Hey everybody. I'm back in school. This will mean many writings will be thrown upon this website. Here's the first.
My teacher asked us to bring in something from home that symbolized who we are, and write about it. This is what happened:
My symbolic object isn't, precisely, an object. The very word "object" implies inanimation, whereas my subject is very warmly alive, adaptive, and thoughtful. The best representation of myself I can bring to you are my hands.
My hands are the only things I've ever had that have been mine to own, to control, and to trust never to be taken from me. I've made them into something I can be really proud of. They are small, seemingly fragile looking, with short, tattered nails. They are swarthy, becalloused by gymnastics rings, bars, and hot coffee pitchers. My fingers are capped with the influence of my steel-stringed guitar, the backs of my hands spattered with well-earned scars. My bones are laced with the evidence of many days spent pulling down hard on bouldering walls, juggling, twirling fire, and building decks. They are ink-stained, palm-ripped, scar-covered, veined like young ivy, and remarkably adept. These are hands that know how to catch a back handspring, scrub up a park playground, play moonlight sonata on a baby grand, build a house, birth a foal, knit a sweater, throw a punch, hold a sword, and gently rock a baby to sleep. They are not an aspiration of what I hope to be, but evidence of what I've done, a scrapbook of my time here so far.
What I adorn my wrists with changes as old strings fray away and new threads replace them, but etched permanently into my skin is a french proverb that's not going anywhere. It says "Etre fort pour etre utile." "Be strong to be useful." The font is from a messy typewriter with a crooked "l", ink spatters abounding unapologetically. That phrase, evidenced by the visual aids that are my hands, is the best introduction I can give you to who I am, what is important to me, and what I will always work to aspire to.
5 years ago