I just finished devouring Amy Palko’s soulgift From Revolutionary Lips for the fifth time. And I will do so again and again. In her foreword, Amy says: “early readers reported back again and again this sense of being taken on a journey. And not just any journey. But one that would take them deep into their own lived experience of their body, their desire, their voice, their frustration, their loss, their wounds, their sexuality, their place, their heart, their shame, and their truth.”
I was one such early reader. But I think I was wrong. I think in this revolution, Amy’s creating an exodus, really. It may be MY journey. But it will be OUR exodus.
Dancing with Amy's words, I see it laid out like this:
The collection, the journey, the exodus, the revolution starts with a sigh. An awakening, really. A scan, an inventory of what’s here. Really here. Soft belly, stretch marks. This mysterious land with no map. To learn, by us, for us, from the inside. Oh, it’s THIS leg of the journey that we avoid. And many of us stop here. Stay here. Wishing there was a map. Sipping tea and shrugging shoulders with resignation. But when the tea’s gone cold and the prospect of not moving forward becomes unbearable, we rise from our chairs. And we walk to the edges of oblivion. To the depths beckoning to be explored. The wounds of broken spaces, Scabby places. We will smell the rotting of pain and taste the metallic blood of grief. We force ourselves to stay here, probing the toothache of the soul, because we know it’s here that the questions reveal their gold. And yes, we know they’ve locked people up for less. But we must keep looking ‘round corners to see what’s here. Twists and turns. Collars flipped up to guard our necks from the chill. Until we see the glow. There it is. What we’ve hidden for so very long. What we’ve silenced. What we’ve ignored. Our desires. Ready to be reclaimed. Ready to be chosen. Again and again. Ready to take us home.
Yeah. It’s like that.
It must be like that.
I wanted to talk to my beloved friend (and this week, I'm thrilled to have her as my house guest!) Ronna Detrick about this business of wanting and owning our desires.
Here's the poem I've chosen to read and to discuss with her. May it lead you home.
The veil of ambivalence settles close to the skin when desire lies latent - tamped down by stories of excess and extravagance. Oh, she's too much, we say, all the while denying ourselves the permission we seek to want what we want without shame without fear without
Please consider this questions and DO share in the comments (or over on my Facebook page for Amy and Ronna to see):
Who would you be if you could want what you want without shame, without fear, without...?
Thank you, Ronna. And thank you Amy, for the gifts upon gifts of this collection.
Amy Palko is the creatrix of Red Thread Voices – a publishing house that aims to offer a home to the voice of exiled feminine, She is also a goddess guide, poet, photographer and lecturer whose work has been featured internationally. She lives in Edinburgh, Scotland with her husband and three teenage children, in their home that overlooks the deep harbour, and the wide mouth of the River Forth as it opens up to swallow the cold waters of the North Sea.