Power, by Adrienne Rich
Living in the earth-deposits of our history
Today a backhoe divulged out of a crumbling flank of earth
one bottle amber perfect a hundred-year-old
cure for fever or melancholy a tonic
for living on this earth in the winters of this climate
Today I was reading about Marie Curie:
she must have known she suffered from radiation sickness
her body bombarded for years by the element
she had purified
It seems she denied to the end
the source of the cataracts on her eyes
the cracked and suppurating skin of her finger-ends
till she could no longer hold a test-tube or a pencil
She died a famous woman denying
her wounds came from the same source as her power
Well, that was very un-psycholobitch, wasn’t it? I mean here we are, setting boundaries, honoring the cunt, liberating anger, being total queens. Funny queens who would totally invite you to our castle and help you dance off any fucktard blues you might have. Queens who would insist that chocolate is a food group and feed you plenty. Queens who would laugh at fucktards. Like the one who asked his ex wife to pay for his vasectomy during their divorce. Or threw a tantrum over toilet paper being marital property. And queens who are also grateful that we did not become queens by having a crown surreptitiously thrust on our heads. We have earned our crowns with blood and tears.
We have earned our crowns through much wounding and self-examination. From the high windows of our castle we can see fuck-it mountain, that reserve of experiences that laid us low, some done to us, some that we have done to ourselves. When we wriggle into this world all pink and rosy, we do not have any clue what we have ahead of us, and still, compelled, we wriggle on. We walk and feel our way through growth and experience. By the time we have been through a lot of life, and we have also acquired a shit-ton of wounds.
My colleague wrote about fucktard repetition, and it made me think how one does not learn to repeat in a void. Somewhere along the way we are taught that this is reality. That all we can expect is one fucktard after another and that we will always be screwed. Fuck it, we say.
Dealing with the wreckage of repetition compulsion and honoring the cunt means we do not become like Marie Curie and keep exposing ourselves to our own radiation and become martyrs for the cause. She had radiation sickness, we have fucktard sickness. Her eyes had cataracts, our hearts have a compulsive attraction to fucktards. She had “cracked and suppurating skin”. We have a pile of fucking motions that bleed us dry after five years in family court. Or a whole notebook of abusive text messages that show how fucked up someone can be. We have absolutely been,”totally fucked”.This leads us to a “cracked and suppurating” heart, reeling at how someone can be so hurtful. She can no longer hold a test-tube or pencil. We can no longer open our hearts as easily as before. We have to even reclaim our own fucking cunt! The one we gave to some pissturd, some twatmonger, some dickfuzz. We have to forgive ourselves.
The whole beauty of the poem comes at the end. Marie Curie could not possibly fix her physical wounds, the ones she denied, the ones Adrienne Rich says are powerful. We cannot fix what happened in the past. We cannot fix fucktards. But we can purify our own elements. We can feel all that pain, grieve all those times we were not seen, or heard, or loved. We can rail at the unfairness and injustice of it all.
And then we can wriggle on, taking the power of our wounds and using it to make something good of our lives. We use our power to find our voices and express them freely and with liberal use of the word “fuck”. We set healthy boundaries and do not let some fucking asshole, some slimy cockwaffle, name us. We commit to healing all that pain and shame because that is the purification.
That, my friends, my queen bitches, is reclaiming the cunt.