i drink wine. your water is heavy.
i feel light with merlot in my veins.
you feel light with nothing in your stomach.
my limbs grow heavy; a thick blanket waits for me.
your water is heavy. your mother waits for you
to cook and fetch and carry and mend.
you live there. i live here.
water runs through our bodies,
the same crystals, the same elements,
heavy and light, harsh and warm,
the same and the same, different and different.
have some wine. let me carry your water.
by isabella mori
for blog action today, october 15, 2010, i am posting 15 water poems in 15 hours.
i just read too scared to pee – about women in nairobi’s slums for whom it is just too dangerous to go to the washroom at night.
details. it is details that make things real for us. statistics like “30% of men in a south african survey believed that women ask to be raped” are scary but they can’t grab us as much as the story of the woman who pees into a plastic bag at night because the 10-minute walk to the public latrine might get her raped. i haven’t even told a good story yet and already the imagination runs wild and questions pop up.
what do you mean, “public latrine”?
how come she doesn’t have a washroom in her house?
who are these animals that make her live that way?
i go to the washroom at least twice at night, how would i survive something like this?
it’s the same with other situations. the other day, a young woman talked about the things she has to do each morning because she has juvenile diabetes. a guy tells a story about the difficulties with finding work because as a single father, he needs to take his 6-year-old son to and from school each day; the son’s social anxiety makes it impossible for him to go to after school care. and when i was working with people with chronic pain, it was the daily details that people were talking about all the time: taking two hours each morning to get out of bed, not having the strength to make elaborate meals and therefore eating a lot of junk food, difficulty wearing shoes …
when we hear the details and the stories, we connect. why is it often so difficult to tell the stories then, when they are so crucial? and what is it that moves us when we go the other way and say, “spare me the details”? are the two connected?
what’s your experience with telling and hearing stories?
as promised, a video about poverty every day this week – blog action day week. this one is a moving piece from last year’s day against poverty.
again, i want to take this opportunity and both thank some people who have been good to me, and also shamelessly use this linkbait to draw everyone’s attention to the issue of poverty. today, i’m tagging some of my friends from entrecard: