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When asked


Please provide a 250 word personal response to the following Virginia Woolf quote, our thematic point of reference for the 2015 Retreat & Waves Discussion Series: Writing Against the Current.

“I’m fundamentally, I think, an outsider. I do my best work and feel most braced with my back to the wall. It’s an odd feeling, though, writing against the current: difficult entirely to disregard the current. Yet of course I shall.”


By sticking to the stickiness of the body, I write against the current of alcohol that flooded my family, generations generations generations momentum. I write out toward my blood-linked people who will not read me. Calloused hands, full-time food service jobs, female bodies back-bent, worn and pickled. My own left knee, the ligament torn at 17, no money for surgery, now permanently puffy. The current of currency, all downhill, away from me. To speak from salt, to write against the tide of lineage, dreams sucked and swallowed, reconstituted into weapons turned against the female self. Find the river raft of women writing, borne on blood and mucus. Writing out against and up and over waves of misogyny. I write as an unapologetic lesbian, a radical love for women. Mostly self-educated, I write out against the current of the canon with which I am largely unacquainted but which defines the establishment literary. I write into the tributaries of June Jordan, Adrienne Rich, Audre Lorde, Judy Grahn, and others.



One thought on “When asked

  1. Oh, how I feel this. I’m so often mistaken for a normal “girl”. but Inside it’s all been rearranged and butchered for effect. The alcohol is a curse – my mother… The service jobs – the trying to pretend I was more privileged and entitled than I’ll ever be – it all makes me weep. And yet ,the peril drives me – it makes vivid the mesh of hidden truths. And here we are. Miss you kiddo. xoxox d

    Posted by Deborah | August 16, 2014, 2:33 pm

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Poet and Tarot Reader, specializing in Water Cartography
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