Speak

The red lipstick on my lips
says, “Speak, girl.
Your words have worth.
Open your mouth
and release your voice.
You were not born
to bow, to zip your mouth,
to go along to get along.
You were born to shout!  You
are to be the resounding bell,
the clanging cymbal,
if you ever want anything
to change. You have to say it.
Name your soul. Name
its desires. Set this narrow
sliver of world on fire!
Say your piece!  Holding back
will mean nothing when
the dam breaks.  (And it will
break.)  Closing in on six feet
tall you were not made to be
small, to speak small, to think
small, to dream small.  Speak
so others can hear you.  Let
what’s buried in your heart
pour out through your Southern,
honeyed mother tongue.
Say your peace.  What will
bring you peace? You have
to name it.  Proclaim it.
Stop zipping your lips.
Stop stuttering and muttering,
and speak.”


I’ve been sitting on that since it tumbled out March 31st, ironically, when I sat down to journal about feeling quiet in recent weeks.  I shared it with some friends, but hadn’t made it public.  I was nervous to make it public (it’s a lot to live up to, for me, at this point), then worried about finding a picture to go with it.

But today, bolstered by friends’ comments and having begun Jen Lee‘s soulful Finding Your Voice: A Voice and Story Course, and since this was part of what drove my decision to take the course, feels like a good time to share it.  As for the picture, in the end, I think the poem speaks well enough for itself.  I don’t think it needs a photographic illustration.

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Categories: Poetry | Tags: , , , , , , | 1 Comment

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One thought on “Speak

  1. Katie

    Rebekah,

    Thank you for bringing this powerful beauty out into the sunshine. It resonates deeply with my journey right now. My calling right now is to find my authentic voice and to play bigger for the healing of the world around me. “Say your peace” and speaking your “mother tongue” ring so true and sacred.

    Thank you,

    Katie
    (your Flockette sister!)

    P.S. I love red lips. Lipstick is my one make-up staple!

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