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Jan 2017
Read more.
Words are the map fragments of wisdom you need to navigate your way in a world constantly sending you searching for that which you don’t yet have a name.

Write more.
And don’t keep it to yourself.  Your voice deserves to be heard too so scream in cursive and whisper in all CAPS, bleed through paper and heal through the spines of notebooks
you’re spiraling onto something, breathe in commas and step over periods because you’re not over
you’re the most beautiful run-on sentence

paint more.
You’re an artist whose perspective warrants an audience,
so leave cerulean fingerprint traces in your titanium touches,
mix gesso with mars and be alizarin against charcoal

stand out. And stand up.

Find adventure in the every day.  Skydive through small talk, zip line through steps up stairs without an end,
life is the ellipses in silences your eyes seek to make stories,

explore.
This world. People. This city you’ve landed yourself and take calculated risks.

Tiptoe through moshpits and stomp through meadows.
Cartwheel into concrete conversations headfirst eyes wide open,

be vulnerable, to those who deserve to see the rawest parts of you.
And leave the ones who’d rather exploit them behind

leave others’ opinions behind.  Let them be the ones collecting dust.
You are stronger than you’ll ever know and ten-fold what they’d ever expect.

So let them guess.
Be the question mark in the corner they can’t place.

Your story is complicated.  But that makes you interesting.
What doesn’t challenge you doesn’t change you and you’ve been challenged each and every day

you get out of bed and speak when so easily you could’ve lost your voice the night you lost your body.
It took you some time and a few nameless faces to claim it again and you’re still working out what that means,
you’ve always had your own way
but all the ****** assault pamphlets name this normal.

[For once it’s a label you don’t detest.]

So this year be normal if you so choose, but also be weird.
Be loud, not small, be confident, and not sorry.
Take up space.
You deserve to.

You are Woman and you are Strong.

Push, but don’t ever shove.
Love unapologetically and fiercely.
But don’t force what a boy is not willing to give.

Find someone who will pay your heart the same attention he does your body.
Scratch that,
find yourself.

Read your body’s brail, your chapters of goosebumps, and play chess with checkers across your skin.
Unlearn and relearn and unlearn and learn to remember you are enough and it is your turn.

Look in the mirror and accept the pieces looking back are in progress.

Keep writing.

Watch the moon make way for the sun. Be brighter than both.
Let your irises draw constellations across galaxies unwritten.
Move so far forward, you stop having a reason to look back.

Forgive that which you cannot change.
You’ll make more mistakes, scrape more knees and trip on chainlink chokers, your jewelry limbs you haven’t yet untangled.
But forgive yourself.

Kiss the boy. Kiss the girl. Kiss no one.
Live in the present tense and with future declaratives.
Appreciate the thousands of little moments still looking to be made yours. Make them yours.

You are worth all the struggle.  Don’t forget.

Be kind but don’t rewind.  
Stay authentic even when you don’t make sense and your words aren’t oil enough to separate

paddle through the waves eyes closed if you have to,
the salt may burn your scars and you may lose your bearings, but keep going.
Maybe this is the year you’re going to learn to swim.
in progress because aren't we all unfinished
Emily K Fisk
Written by
Emily K Fisk  Buffalo; Syracuse; Boston
(Buffalo; Syracuse; Boston)   
  1.4k
     M, Sk Abdul Aziz, sirwca and Dhaara T
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