Six months ago from today 20 March, Reynaldo and I embarked on the beautiful journey A Tribute to Womanhood. (Rey and I have been collaborating for over seven months in two major collaborations and 7 small collaborations creating 126 (63/63) works in total and receiving 116 features for our collaborative works). Rey asked me if I wanted to collaborate with him on this 40/40 Tribute to Womanhood Series when we were in the middle of our first collaboration the Passion Series in August 2009. I said yes immediately. I had never been offered such a wonderful opportunity to work with another artist on such a huge project. And A Tribute to Womanhood with such a brilliant and talented artist as Reynaldo was a gift and exciting proposition. I seized the opportunity and we started planning how we would bring these 80 works together and after discussions we decided given the magnitude of the project that we would divide the Collaboration up into four mini series: Real Women, Women in Relation to Men, Women in Fairy Tales and Women Archetypes.
So we set off 20 September 2009 on our journey exploring, creating and examining women form a plethora of perspectives. Sometimes in life an experience happens that leaves an indelible mark on your soul…this experience has for me been the transformative exciting journey of collaborating with the brilliant Reynaldo in our Tribute to Womanhood. In six months Rey and I have created 90 works (80 for Tribute and 10 works for separate collaborations) in the form of paintings, drawings, poetry exploring and celebrating womanhood from many different angles. As mutual muses and partners we have worked in harmony on this inspiring project with synergy and connection our energy has flowed back and forward beautifully from California to Melbourne and from Melbourne to California.
What an amazing and beautiful experience it has been and we cannot begin to express our gratitude to all our beautiful friends on RedBubble who have shared the journey with us. Thank you from the depths of our hearts for your support, comments, favourites and features….As a way of celebrating and summarising our Tribute to Womanhood Collaboration Rey and I will upload five journal entires. This one will be the 11 collaborations where I wrote the poem and Rey created a beautiful painting. Sometimes the painting came first as in Blue Eyed Gypsy Woman, No to Date Rape, Dreaming of Him, Fire In Her Belly, World in his Arms and other times the poem came first as in Yes, Diamond Core, Glamour Trap, Toxic. Working with the brilliant and beautiful Reynaldo has been an complete honour and pleasure. Thank you dear Reynaldo you are an absolute professional with a brilliant imagination and a beautiful heart, generous spirit and a sublime talent.
Please enjoy our first Journal of Five
1. Blue Eyed Gypsy Woman
Blue Eyed Gypsy Woman by Reynaldo
Blue Eyed Gypsy Woman by Anthea Slade
Her crystal blue eyes sparkle
with the verve of life
reflecting the gentle rawness
of her journey that has
sculptured the woman she is now.
Her sensual lips quiver, vulnerable
with the sensitivity of her heart
revealing that through cruel experience
she has blossomed into a goddess,
gracious, wise and knowing.
Her blue necklace and earrings
dance with her blue eyes to expose
the serenity of her heart
Her red dress energies her
to keep moving from town to town,
Her brown hat attaches her to the earth.
Where ever she roams
She becomes part of the time and place
Learning from experience,
Living in the present,
She becomes one with the moment,
She is zen.
A free wind that blows
through one town to the next
Where ever she goes she shows
the local people they can be free
because freedom resides in her heart.
She is there and then she is gone
but she leaves indelible mark
on their minds.
Her beauty and her grace
etched in gold for all who look
and see her radiate love.
It just takes a moment to see her
kindness and warmth
Her true free spirit,
will last in their memory always,
Cause she has courage to keep flying.
Free like a bird of grace
she flies to the next place,
to start the next transformation
Because she is the divine feminine
the alchemist of our souls and for
all those who dare to look
will be forever changed.
Forever free and wild,
overflowing with kindness
she gives all who
greet her a touch of grace,
blissful joy and a
radiant smile on their face.
Anthea Slade 20 September 2009
2. Abandoned With A Rose/Abandoned
Abandoned With A Rose by Reynaldo
Abandoned by Anthea Slade
No one here.
You left like a thief in the night
while my body was still trembling
from where you had been.
A Red Rose on my pillow
is all that was left to remind me
you had been here.
I had admired you from a far.
noticing your wicked charisma, your style.
You had looked at me but not
seen me in the daylight hours.
It had taken midnight drinks
to remove my inhibition
I spoke to you and you looked
into my eyes and this time saw my soul
that resided there.
You suggested we leave.
Liquid desire so fluid
with sensuality ripe,
you took me to your brothers empty
apartment to dance with
You said I was beautiful.
You touched my face all
over with your fingers then
your delicious lips…pulling me to
your breath of honey dew.
With succulent longing
you grabbed inside my heart
a time bomb ticking and
pulled me to your body
In bliss, all night we became one.
And finally after hours of
We fell into a dream,
a note of bliss that played out
in a symphony of surreal music.
Enchanted by your breath and
your scent that whispered to my body,
I smiled dreaming,
drifting off between waking and sleeping.
I fell asleep smiling.
Only to wake to find you gone.
My body still aching, alive
from your loving attention.
My heart now pounding ripped
to the core of pain.
Raw throbbing of emotional pain
that strangled me
and takes my breath
and obliterates my voice
with blood rising to my head pounding.
All the wounds of their leaving
opened up and bled again.
I fell to the dirt in my soul
and ate the soil of hurt and
watched my heart disintegrate into
Melancholy gripped my heart
and the realisation knocked at my
mind, telling me what had been love to me
had just been play for you.
I could feel my head splinter,
shards of glass through my brain
I curled up in a fetal position
trying to contain myself and
not crack my skull.
How could you leave me
When our hearts connected so fine,
Leaving with not a word, a note,
You have split my thoughts into
a million pieces of pain
So that I no longer know which
part is true, which part is me.
You never needed to race me to rejection,
I would never have rejected you,
I do not believe in rejection because
love just is. It is not like
a garment you can take on and off
at a whim. Love etches on your soul forever.
You ripped yourself away from me,
Leaving only a red rose,
a symbol of our perfect love,
that only lasted one night.
By Anthea Slade 27-9-09
3. Fire In Her Belly
Fire In Her Belly by Reynaldo
Fire In Her Belly by Anthea Slade
Embers of desire spark.
that do not allow rest.
Body memories tingle
as his body is imprinted on her forever.
Imagining lips and fingers
running all over parts.
tickle her ear.
Sucked into the vortex of desire
Deeper passion still hides behind her eyes.
tensions of longings
Eternal flame draws in the air
Liquid desire distracts
Steeped in wetness
Blood stirs and heart pounds
Hidden aches of pain
because he is not here.
Wanting, imagining that he
would walk through the door
Take hold of her and dance
and court her through the steps of love
tango, salsa….tension brewing.
Stomach aching longing for his look that is only for her
and burning for his touch that
shakes her soul
and draws her into the ecstasy of unspoken passion.
Burning upon burning
Soaring skyward bound…
sleepless nights of lonely longing
when her dreams of him consume her soul
ebbing rush of desire,
pulsating, reaching, imagining
the fire in her belly burning
to be with only him…completely.
By Anthea Slade
4. Dreaming of Him
Dreaming of Him by Reynaldo
Dreaming of Him by Anthea
Dreaming of him
makes her feel beautiful
Seeing his image
in her minds eye
Filling in the detail
the line, colour and form
He takes shape in line first
and shading of light and shade second.
Sweet words of love
vibrate through her mind
and send her heart dancing
Beating to a new rhythm
one that she has never known before.
She can now see context,
place and see how raw history has lead to now.
Seeing new meaning
that comes from her womanhood knowing
that something so strong
can never be wrong
To be able to see with clarity
and know with surety
that this feeling that builds with
each day is been fed by reality
Where reality skips and plays
and takes over dreams by its majesty
Where reality use to bite
now it kisses her with desire
and no longer bruises her
but tenderly seduces her
into a consistent dance of
passion and tenderness
that takes her dream to a new level
a time, place and scene where she can revel.
Could this be heaven on earth?
Not heaven built on idealism
but heaven built on lived known experience
where the maturity and wisdom
finally come together in perfect balance
that creates beauty from inside out
and that he can see
embrace and honour.
Where admiration and love are
the first ingredients of their desire
and knowing is pulse of their fibre
and she dreams of the days to
explore and reinvent the dreams of him
dancing, forging bringing them into reality
Mutual voice, mutual admiration, mutual
stories spoken and heard
that lead to communication of the highest order
where broken hearts can heal
and live deeper then ever before
Because beauty is based on their truth
and seeing each other as they really are…
Dreaming of him fills her mind
and with grace hope and desire for him
By Anthea Slade
5. World In His Arms
World In His Arms by Reynaldo
World In His Arms by Anthea Slade
She is to him the most precious gift
She is the beat of his heart,
the beam of his moon,
the shine of his stars
and the ignite of his passion.
He shows her that she
is the ocean to him by
the way he tenderly strokes her neck,
runs fingers through her hair
By the way his eyes look
beyond her eyes and his
ears listen to her words,
his mouth asks her questions
longing to know her heart.
He demonstrates his passion for her
by the way he admires her intelligence,
holds up her ideas and never
undermines her sensitive heart
He whispers softly in her ears
urging her to blossom and not
be afraid to dance in the daylight.
And she knows that he honours her
by the respect he shows by hearing her heart
And she feels his attention
by the way he notices the emotion in her face
She understands he loves her
by the way he holds her when she cries.
He holds her in his arms
and she feels contained and intensely calm
She holds him to her breast
and he feels her nurture and respect
He lifts her up to the heavens
and makes her feel like a real goddess.
And he knows the universe smiled on him
because not only does he have the stars
he holds the world in his arms and speaks
out loud – This is my woman!
By Anthea Slade
6. No to Date Rape/No is No
No To Date Rape by Reynaldo
No is No by Anthea Slade
No is not yes
No is not sort of
No is not kind of
No is not maybe…
No to mind games that devastate sensitive brains
No to power that intimidates tender hearts
No to subtext that does not equate real text
No to premediatated cruelty that attacks self esteem
No to dishonesty that disturbs pure minds
No to manipulation that hurts our souls
No to love bombing, where abundant love shifts to deprivation
No to pushing through boundaries that are never meant to be broken
No to sadistic enjoyment of others misfortune
No to words that will never be action
No to betrayal that leads to deep wounds
No to abandonment where ones security is erased
No to rejection that should never be an option
No to lies that deceive and torment us
No to lack of decency and honour
No to black and white thinking that limits our minds
No to judgemental attitudes that bleed our imagination dry
No to undermining sentences that crack our confidence
No to praying on the innocent
No to sexualising children
No to disrespecting our aged
No to exploiting our vulnerable
No to snobbery that alientates and divides
No is not a joke
No is not a laugh
No is not to be taken lightly
No is not an invitation
No is not a temptation
No is not a seduction
No is not a revelation
No is not a suggestion
No is an answer
No is to be respected
No is a protection
No is given for a reason
No is fullstop.
No is The End.
No to Date Rape.
No is No.
That is all.
By Anthea Slade
7. Diamond Core
Diamond Core by Reynaldo
Diamond Core by Anthea Slade
Don’t you try to unsettle me
I can see through to the other side
Don’t try to demean and cancel me out
I will rise again like the Phoenix
Don’t you try to put me to disgrace
and line my face with cruelty
because I will duck and weave
the arrows of war
Don’t you try to invalidate me
because my colour will grow even more brilliant
Don’t you try to rip my voice out of my box
because my voice will scream louder
Don’t you try to eradicate me
because I will never be erased
Don’t try to destroy my spirit
because my spirit is made of the strongest fibre
Don’t try to exploit me
because my intelligence is emotional and intellectual
Don’t pressure me into the stultifcation of dutybound
because I am a free spirit and must fly with wings outstretched.
Don’t try to blacken my heart with pain
because it is and always will be red with passion
Don’t tell me to be selfless because
if there is no self there can be no other
Don’t tell me to remove my esteem with
no self respect there can be no bliss
Don’t tell me there is only one way to see and that is black and white
because I will show you a multitude of colours
Don’t try and disengage me from my inner voice
because my voice will never be silenced.
Don’t trap me into negative thinking patterns
because I will never be brainwashed
Don’t think that by removing love from me
that I will whither and die because
my heart can beat in
a raw dark place.
Don’t use guilt to haunt me into a limited life
because I have always sucked the marrow out of it.
Don’t tell me that my soul has no value
because my soul dances to its own beat
Don’t try to break me, annihilate me
because my CORE is diamond
and it sparkles and cannot be broken
and will cut through and shatter
all your glass houses into a trillion tiny pieces
and will shine on until my last breath.
By Anthea Slade 23 Nov 09
8. Yes is a Gift/YES
Yes is a Gift by Reynaldo
YES by Anthea Slade
Yes to sun on my back and breeze on my eyelids
Yes to shadows that reveal the light
Yes to living fully not partly
Yes to breathing in and listening to that quiet still voice inside
Yes to keeping your heart open even when it breaks
Yes to singing in your car with the volume turned up
Yes to looking in your lovers eyes and seeing the tears that reside there
Yes to feeling the spray of the waterfall caress your cheek
Yes to skinny dipping in the black night with the silver moon
Yes to surrendering to the waves that crash through your legs with intent
Yes to gasping for breath in the face of magnitude of a massive mountain
Yes to crying tears overwhelmed by the beauty of a Van Gogh masterpiece
Yes to the splendour of ice cream slipping down your throat
Yes to looking into the eyes of a friend who has been crying
Yes to standing up when life has knocked you over
Yes to mending when your insides are minced red raw
Yes to facing the day when your heart has been splattered across the wall
Yes to reaching out in faith even when there is only the dark
Yes to having courage to speak out regardless of whether it is heard or not
Yes to a beautiful Red Rose that opens to full blooms and petals begin to fall
Yes to rising from the ashes in the wings of Phoenix
Yes to feeling the exuberance of breathing in our air
Yes to celebrating the process just not the end result
Yes to shiver, quiver, tremble, the vulnerability falling in love completely
Yes to revealing the truth even when the risk is rejection
Yes to dancing in the flames of sexual abandon with the one you love
Yes to surrendering to the beat of a primitive drum
Yes to letting your body open to the quiver and the ripple of sensual pulse
Yes to having your hair fly free riding naked on your horse into the ocean
Yes to whisper in your lovers ear that you love them beyond imagination
Yes to love that considers the other heart beyond its own
Yes to being strong enough to be soft enough to be true to self
Yes to learning from love rather then pain
Yes to seeing tenderness as not insane
Yes to reaching out and touching another’s heart
Yes to creative freedom that inspires and ignites
Yes to words that reflect our inner drives
Yes to laughter that kisses our days with utter delight
Yes to seeing a sparkling jewel in each day, in each night
Yes to discussion that encourages learning
Yes to questions that convey engagement
Yes to open minds that explore your story
Yes to focus that demonstrates attraction
Yes to collaboration that shares your inner fire
Yes to living life with vitality and vigour
Yes to taking risks to be real
Yes to Kindness that is compassionate
Yes to dance
Yes to love
Yes to freedom
Yes to acceptance
Yes to allowing
Yes to knowing
Yes to giving
Yes to sharing
Yes to yes
Yes to Joie de Vivre
Yes to Seize the day
Yes to Gather ye Rose buds while you may
Yes to sucking the marrow out of life
Yes to living life with Je ne sais quoi
Yes to life living true to self above all
Yes is a gift
Yes is an opening
Yes is an opportunity
Yes is a delight
Yes is Yes
Yes is everything
By Anthea Slade 29 November 2009
9. A Tribute to a Peer…Bernard/Sensitivity and Soul
A Tribute to a Peer…Bernard by Reynaldo
Sensitivity and Soul by Anthea Slade
We knew him through his art.
Looking at Bernards painting was
like looking directly into Bernards heart
so beautiful…so generous, he revealed much
with such extraordinary sensitivity
and such nuanced feeling
he spoke to us.
Emotions so real
feelings so tender
following the contours of his heart
the journeys of his mind
All his eyes had it
windows into the beauty that resided in his soul.
Eyes that would hold your attention
turning glances into stares of wonder
thoughts into feelings of awe.
As admirers and viewers of his art
we always responded emotionally to his marks
He conveyed such an extreme sensitivity,
a gentleness and awareness of human emotion
that was unique in his style.
Learning of his leaving
threw us into a state of shock
Bernard left without a warning
gone…with grace and dignity…he departed
leaving his art in his wake…
a transcendent and magnificent legacy.
Just his art from his heart
that revealed his vulnerability
and defined his humanity
and depicted his genius
His style, his own
speaking from a voice within with:
the nuance of emotion
the boldness of lines
the expressiveness of his eyes
the sensualness of his nudes
the humanity and the touch of playfulness
always close to the surface
The breadth and depth of emotion
always left us reaching for words
to define these feelings
Words fell short as his paintings
took us on journeys where words cannot go.
His bold and sweeping strokes of confidence
Showed in his masterful and beautiful work.
A true artist with the brilliance
the genius, the power that urged him to
create masterpiece after masterpiece
Oh Bernard our friend,
Our peer in art
Your finesse and grace
with the genius of your heart
will speak to us forever with reverie
We thank you for the your art
and your heart that
touched our lives and
will forever more
Rest in peace beautiful friend.
You will never be forgotten
Your beautiful art will remind us
of your soul always and take
us deeper into the mysteries of our own.
Sleep well dear Bernard,
Sleep well, and in peace, friend.
We send our love and deepest sympathies
to Bernard’s Family and Close Friends.
By Anthea Slade
10. Where Angels Fear To Tread/Toxic
Where Angels Fear to Tread by Reynaldo
Toxic by Anthea Slade
Fifteen minutes of annhilation each morning
One way transmission bombarding our minds
whilst strategically choosing the next one
to manage out.
Not happy unless inflicting
intense pressure and critical poison on the staff
with the aim to destroy and drive out.
Time is an assassin
Health issues pandemic
Insomnia, Anxiety and Depression
Rising blood pressure
Pending heart attack
as they turn the knife of abuse.
Emergency of the soul as it starts to collapse
Red light as the character continues to corrode
Squash down, destroy staff
Sell and con up to upper management.
Distant management that does not show face
as the manager is given carte blanche to kill their underlings
by severe pressure.
Staff poised ready for the onslaught
Who will they slaughter next?
Narcissism at its most impure
the manager looks only at their own reflection
I am a good manager and if
you don’t like it you can leave?
They remain unchecked as they manipulate
the upper management to believe
the staff are corrupt and have turned against them…
as staff march out the door each month?
Staff leave quickly just to escape the environment
We are urged to empower clients
but at the same time staff
are being abused by management.
Given more than is humanly possible to do
they set us up for high anxiety and
that leads to mental failure.
Decay of character in
the new work place
Post Modern dilemma
as rashes form on our faces
calluses form on our hearts.
Who gave them permission to
destroy peoples lives as
the hammer falls and falters on our heads?
Blood yellow Face black
Conquer and divide the staff
by favouring one staff over the others
Not giving credit to those who are deserving
Rewarding the favourites
Creating internal competition
Making the staff feel uneasy and
insecure trying to devastate inner peace.
The manager’s actions alone trigger all kinds of
High attrition and absenteeism is not a sign of bad staff
but is instead an indication of the
ineptitude of management.
Still the reasons for leaving remain uninvestigated.
Their hostile actions make
hypocrites of what they preach
As they do not practice
a win win win mentality
instead they destroy destroy destroy
No compassion is demonstrated.
Insensitivity is rampant.
Makes our blood boil
blood pressure rise
we are a time bomb ticking
and only financial vulnerability
keeps us soldiering on.
Time is thief
Life is a betrayer
Passive resistance is the only protection
as the staff must put on the armour of war
before each day they enter the door.
Only the need for survival keeps us there
As the hostile environment demands
that to survive we must disengage
Rather then submit to the murder
of our hearts and souls.
They the chosen ones
ride on the success of the hard work
of the victims they hammer
and yet no recognition is given to those
who should receive it.
The manager micro manages all because
they do not trust their staff
to get the work done.
The manager moves with reckless abandon
hammering, white anting, conquering and dividing,
the beast the corporate psychopath.
A power path destroying the fabric of business
and hence society.
Is it really true that 1 in 10 managers have
the profile of a criminal psychopath?
The cult of the criminal mind
the insidious undermining
the blatant favouritism
the shocking destruction of others
where they target and abuse
until either the person leaves
from high anxiety or complete breakdown.
Staff struggle to breathe
Trying not to drown as
they tread water in the muck of this abuse
So exhausted by the energy used to survive
they are too drained to look for work
Self esteem is eroded
Who told them it was ok to make the workplace
a War Zone?
Each word is a bullet of soul destruction where
the knife cuts the core out of our hearts.
Where they set one individual up against another.
Where muted mind try to unravel brilliant minds
Where words always have a motive and
Where nothing is what it seems
Where walking in the office the vital energy is sucked dry.
We pray to escape
We long to break free
We hope to survive and
reveal this so others do not have to be
subject to this utter abuse of the soul
Because this manager is TOXIC and this should
never have been allowed to happen.
Out out out dammed spot.
The destroyer needs to be destroyed
and Toxic transformed to healthy
environment where collaboration,
voice and professionalism reign supreme.
Oh yes this is my cry and this
is my dream.
By Anthea Slade Written 6 January 2010
Glamour…Trap. By Anthea Slade
You’re so vain
I bet you think this poem is about you
You’re so vain
I bet you think this poem is about you
Did Carly Simon
see all those years ago that
vanity and happiness were incompatible?
Vulnerable Marilyn knew
that the lost child in her needed mass attention
and without it she felt invisible.
So she watched herself being looked at and dreamed…
Song bird Judy knew
when she was forced to diet as a child
to make physical self
reflect her gifted and projected self.
Naomi Wolf knew
as she debunked glamour in the beauty myth.
Is our skin in 2010 really more important than our soul?
When did surface over rule substance?
When did voluptuous turn to anorexia as a preferred look?
When did womanly change to adrogenous?
When did lumps and bumps change from sexy to skinny?
Some where between Marilyn and Kate the notion of glamour
was unpacked and broken apart and what is beautiful reinvented.
We just need to look at the mags, the media, the movies
with the smooth, air brushed perfect look of models and actresses to
see what is honoured and admired now.
A 21 year male model visiting my work place told me that
he started to use botox to delay the aging process.
I can delay the lines six months at a time
your face freezes and you stay younger he said.
What about the poison and the lost expression I said.
He looked blank. He could not express his emotion
as his face was dead of expression.
I could not have them airbrush me at 21. So I just froze it
It’s all over for us two 40 year old women cried.
How is it over? I said.
We don’t have that sexual pull that attention on mass like we use to they said.
When did what we look like become more important then who we are? I said.
The pressure to look good and be young is overwhelming
as 100’s of Hollywood movies stars demonstrate as they cut
their lines, their faces and their ages away each hour, each day.
We can take our own self portrait with our iPhones from every angle
We can post our best as we become our own muses and our own models
As artists some use no one else but self for their art.
When did Narcissism become the new religion of this Wired generation?
Narcissuss who fell in love with his own reflection as he stared at the pool
so long he died so in love with self he became someone else.
Has narcissism become the new mental illness of this ME generation?
Do we all fall victim to those blue, those brown, those green eyes
that stare back at us in the mirror?
Did the wicked Queen in Snow White
have it right when she said Mirror Mirror on the Wall
who is the fairest of them all?
Me. At first it was. Until another beauty rose up
and took her mantle of beauty in the land.
Instant online gratification, constant attention
the internet feeds us this Mirror Mirror on the Wall situation
We can take photos and photoshop soften the reality
posting the best we can set up an alluring fascade
to attract attention
to find fine compliments
to feed our ego
to feel an instant high
to feel constant hits
Always on our need to be seen shifts gear to overdrive.
Insatiably we are driven
to be noticed and fed in order to Feel!
We put on the perfume of performance
We become the look of glamour
After all we have the tools and desire to be glamorous
ah…But there is a rub?
Pop philosophy tells us there is a secret.
The laws of attraction becomes a best seller
My father before he died told me that positive thinking
manifests success when I was eight years old.
I wonder what Foucault, Derrida, Descartes would have to say
about this…Is it just one view of many?
Or is it suger coating for our self indulgent need to manifest
a partner that looks, breathes, inhales, thinks the same as
we do? What happened to opposites attracting?
Can we move beyond ourselves? Please.
Ego attracts ego…when did smile lines become a sin?
When did popularity on mass become more important than difference?
When did others opinions of us become more important than our inner voice?
When did the mirror reflect only our own image and prevent us looking out?
When did outside how we appear become more important then who we are?
Are we so choked by our insatiability for attention and blocked by this
notion of glamour that can no longer see?
When did we lose the courage to stand up and say this is me?
The real. The raw. The imperfect. The human. ME.
The fault line of my soul
The aging of my beauty
The corrosion of my character that shifts and flits and falls
away from me on all sides.
Looking always from the fringes
I got a clear view of the centre
Never being smooth and polished and
even as a youthful beauty my voice got stuck
in my throat infront of 300 peers. Mortified.
Always clumsy a fly flew in my mouth
when I was in the choir and I choked.
Undermined beyond recognition I learnt
to listen to that quiet still voice
within and seek my own counsel.
I learnt very young that reality is a lot
different to appearance.
Shakespeare, T.S. Elliot, George Orwell, Vincent taught me well.
Named by my X- Husband – The Essence Girl
You always look beneath the surface of things to the heart of the matter. He said.
Ah but that is where the beauty lies I said.
I love that about you He said.
He still left. But I remained that essence girl.
The quirky, the idiosyncratic, the individual, the fringe dweller.
I always chose the fringe over the mainstream
Empathising with Vincent the eternal fringe dweller
Even though I could have been popular in youth and beauty
I knew that to be popular I would have to sacrifice my inner core.
My mother said I was popular. I never noticed. After my dad
died I turned inward.
My truth to self and Shakespeare had already brainwashed me
Above all unto thine own self be true He said.
So I saw my blemish
Embraced my differencce
Acknowledged my imperfection
and looked out at others
I learnt that to be interesting
one needs to show interest in others
Asking questions is more important
then a one way monologue with self.
When did the superficiality of the outward become
more important then nuanced mystery of the inward journey?
Why do we box ourselves in?
Categorise, scrutinize, glamorise ourselves and leave
our inner life disconnected, unseen and misunderstood?
I say let’s remove the box
Let pandora open and reveal the real
beneath the sparkle and gloss
Let’s look out at each other and see
the beauty that resides beneath the surface
Let the raw be revealed
Let us dance and express the song of our heart
even if it is not glamorous.
Exposing our vulnerability to others is
perhaps the most courageous act of all.
Let us do a dance of character to its full potentional
Instead of trying to stuff ourselves with the poison
the toxic dumbing down of some preconceived notion
For goodness sake let us reach out from our mirror mirror mentality
Let us smash the mirror into 1000 pieces and be real with
ourselves and with others and maybe then we can truly connect
with intensity, with purity, with reality and with beauty, yes the beauty
of who we truly are.
And I believe that then and only then we will be able to move
beyond the Glamour trap and finally connect with others
and be free!
Ah yes vanity and happiness are incompatible.
I know which one I choose.
By Anthea Slade 25 January 2010
Rey and I thank you so much for sharing this Collaboration with us. Your support and encouragement and beautiful comments have been part of the magic and enchantment of this experience for us.
The next Journal will be: Real Women. Our first 20 works in our collaboration.
Rey & Anthea