Telling the Truth

connecting the dots of my life

Tag: Inconvenient Truth

Three-ring circus

The three-ring circus
Drones on without apology
Mesmerizing the faithful
And the not-so-faithful
With thrilling chilling
Unheard-of stunts
And dare-devil moves
Designed to grab attention
And votes of confidence

The world beyond
The Great White Tent
Descends into despair
Tripping over truth
And inconvenient facts
Of now and then
Looking the other way
Refusing to breathe deeply
Hoping for something better
Though it hasn’t been
In style for ages

Meanwhile
The Hope of All the Earth
Looks on wondering
For this I came, lived
And died?

We live in an age that loves to watch deceit and cunning. Not just in The Great White Tent, but in our neighborhoods, churches, schools and businesses. This seems to hold true whether we like or dislike deceit and cunning.

It takes inner strength to live in truth these days. Especially in relationships with people we see or meet every day. Nonetheless, even on our best days we aren’t The Hope of All the Earth. Instead, we’re a company of earthlings loved by The Hope of All the Earth. Right now.

Wishing each of you Advent blessings,
Elouise

© Elouise Renich Fraser, 3 December 2019
Artwork by Linda Mears, found at pixels.com

Inconvenient truth

Bad timing
The look on your face
The tone of your voice
Your choice of words
What you said
How you said it
And a thousand other
Inconveniences
Called upon as evidence
Against you and your kind
Will never withstand
The strength of truth
Spoken out loud
By just one survivor
With nothing to gain
And everything to lose
Including false shame

If I had to name my greatest achievements in life they are, in order:

  1. Seeking help from a psychotherapist for unrelenting IBS, depression, shame, anxiety attacks and more. I was in my late 40s.
  2. Setting up a meeting with my parents and reading to my father my two-page statement. In short, I did not deserve to be shamed, humiliated or silenced by his beatings. This meeting took place on the eve of my 50th birthday.

The poem acknowledges the excruciating reality that there will never be just the right moment to tell inconvenient truth. Or just the right way. Or with just the right looks on our faces.

I applaud survivors of life-changing events, endured at the hands of others, who do their ‘homework’ and then speak out. As many times as needed.

We are an inconvenient truth in this nation.

We’re everywhere, in sight and out of sight. We want freedom from false shame, debilitating depression, anxiety attacks, and lies we tell ourselves about ourselves.

Many of us were violated as children or babies, before we were old enough to know what was being done to us. Often violation against us preceded our own violation of others. That doesn’t get us off the hook. It just clarifies the lay of the land and what we must do to make sense of what seems senseless.

We can’t change the people who victimized us. We can, however, give ourselves the gift of facing what happened to us, getting professional help, and learning to do what we think we can’t do to make amends to ourselves and others. No matter what the consequences.

A liberated voice doesn’t come cheap.

© Elouise Renich Fraser, 10 Oct 2018

An aching void

An aching void
stretches the length of a canyon
through my heart

What would it mean
to inhabit this land
waiting breathless
to learn its fate?

Bones of natives
and explorers
lie dormant
beneath
dead dreams
and living nightmares

Who are the settlers of today –
willing to inhabit the aching truth
of our collective past?

Truth about this country lies in yesterday’s buried news–told and untold. As a nation, we didn’t get here because of an ‘accident’ of history. We got here on the backs, shoulders, hopes, dreams, half-truths, lies and ignored truths of generations before us.

I’m grateful for the true settlers of today–courageous children, women and men unwilling to settle for half-truths, lies or apathy.

I’m also grateful for the weekend. Not as a diversion, but as an opportunity to focus on Sabbath rest. I don’t inhabit this land. I inhabit a tiny corner  of this world God created for sheer love of beauty. This Sabbath I want to rest in some of God’s beauty and truth.

© Elouise Renich Fraser, 25 August 2017
Response to WordPress Daily Prompt: Inhabit

a pretty sure life

The rights and responsibilities
Of a pretty sure life
Hang weightless around her neck

She glides fairly easily
From one scene into the next
Wearing privilege on her skin

Without effort she blends in
Sometimes anxious but rarely for her life
Mature, sweet and polite she passes easily

A charming married woman with children
She meets the gold standard
Against which womanhood is weighed

No need to check her credentials
Her language or demeanor
No need to run a background check

She’s one of us
Sometimes unruly and annoying
Yet harmless
Because her heart beats white

I’ve been the beneficiary of many opportunities. Not strictly because of who I am, but because I’m a white woman. And because I’m not a rabble-rouser or revolutionary. I’m just a steady, dependable, meticulous, relationally gifted white woman who gets along with just about everyone. What more is there?

I don’t regret the opportunity to be part of an academic faculty and administration. I do, however, regret how oblivious I was to my white privilege even though I was part of an unusually diverse community of students, staff and faculty. Only with the Rodney King event and its aftermath at our seminary did I begin to scratch the surface of my white privilege.

I’m reminded daily of how easily our country ignores, suppresses and tries to bury our history. Mr. Trump has made visible what’s been there all along. No secrets here. Just inconvenient truth, and an opportunity to seize the moment.

My heart beats white. I’m still unpacking what this means for me.

Thanks for listening!
Elouise 

© Elouise Renich Fraser, 23 August 2017
Response to WordPress Daily Prompt: Visceral

%d bloggers like this: