I’m in a writers’ group that meets through the auspices of one of the homeless services organizations in the area, and this week, one of the writing prompts was this, from Marjorie Agosin:
All exiles are like deep breaths, imperceptible in uninhabited landscapes.
This is what came from that prompt:
How did I wind up exiled from my own life? Or maybe it should be “my old life”, because I am still, demonstrably, alive: I see and hear and feel, both in body and in mind; I breathe in air and smoke and scent and bitterness and joy, and breathe out plant food and mist; I move through the world, and the world moves through me, and together we are.
And yet…I wrote a blog about my accident, but thinking of it now, it’s bloodless — the accident was bloodless, too, physically, but my heart’s blood pumped out onto the street along with the oil and antifreeze, yellow-green puddles and streams down the hill.
I think I was hiding from my feelings, or thought I was reconciled to a new kind of reality — hoping for one, almost, a way of moving forward but looking, feeling, rather like moving backward for a while. But the blog, I think now, lacks emotion. Not bad, just kind of empty, and I’m not empty, don’t want to be empty, don’t want to be an exile in any more ways. Because “All exiles are like deep breaths, imperceptible in uninhabited landscapes,” and I refuse to be imperceptible.
To be uninhabited.
To be an exile.