Dear Unwise Hawks:
May you land beside her, rather than two inches in front of her flapping your fancies in her unfinished work— or putting your name on her work without knowing what she sees.
May you not mistake her eyes for shiny objects, pluck them from her and label her with an exhausted metaphor. She is not a broken bird.
May you not criticize her precarious perch. The tiny branch you deemed inadequate, is one she made. It's where she gave birth and raised her child. It's where she was attacked and struggled to remain. It's not your place.
May you not blame psychopaths who came before you for the pain you offered to her or become tangled in the braided cords rising above her— they are braided so they may break and heal simultaneously. They are bound to her and to powers beyond you. They are her faith and cannot be destroyed by you.
May you discover why you become angry when she is afraid and why you fear her metaphors but not your own. Metaphorically speaking, should you slice her in half, don't be surprised to find whole knives, arrows, and other indigestible weapons in her bloodstream. You are not the first to harm her, to become a part of her. Her tears are not only for you.
May you not characterize her as a thing so that you may feel less afraid. A thing entertains you when you turn it on. But you can only turn it off by breaking it, to prove you're in control of it. Breaking a thing that becomes more alive upon wounding is more frightening than caring for her as she was, back when you found her in organic form.
May you not punish her for healing, or assume she is capricious for expressing herself instead of doing the yoga pose you imagine. If she presses her delicate wrists to the earth, shoves her ass to the moon, and gazes between her fragile ankles at upside-down memories you, for she is so lost without you, she may never see right side up again— it's not her. It's just your thoughts. Thoughts are things, not her. Even if the moon outlines her body as if that ass had an independent aura— it's your thoughts, not her.
May you not remain confused about what feminism is. Your thoughts, your concept will attack you, and your judgment of it will oppress you— especially if for decades, you've been fascinated by the story of a woman who was abused and driven to violence. If you spend your life reinventing this myth, pondering the idea that sex is the sole weapon of an empowered woman, or that sex is power at all, you will feel attacked by your attraction to her.
May you not flatter yourself with the idea you would protect her. You can't protect her if you can't experience her. All you can do is sit at a distance watching her without her knowing, without saying a word, as she untangles a massive pile of tiny chains and you decide that she is pained and therefore your myth, and all of this is for you— although it's for her own release, not for you.
May you be assured when she combs her braids and puts them back in place, she does not accept your punishment. Your punishment is not for her, and it's not for her child. It's absurd to threaten her child, to think you can. Her child knows her, not you.
May you discover why you would attempt to harm her child that you may own some part of her. It would be easier— far less dramatic— to take your name off her work, return it to her, and take from this experience your own purpose. Or if you are so desperate for an idea, just let her know. She is charitable though she did not agree to work for you.
May you remember the results of her work are more pointed than she is. When she works (and copes), she typically sits on the couch with a bowl of popcorn, a laptop, and a tea. No matter her muse or her feelings, it's not a violent event. She wears a robe you haven't seen— it's an experiment in sense memory— inspired by a kimono and realities she would prefer to forget but cannot. She invites these realities to be transformed. Her work is to create symbols, to cast abstract votes for new realities.
On this day, she barricades her door for a sudden fear of you. Your choices have left a sinister taste in the ethers. She fears you don't know the difference between your myth and her, that you are bound so tightly by the workings of your mind, you cannot differentiate between your thoughts and her being. It's a fear she bets will pass as she remains aware it's a bet that other women have lost. She shares her work as a means of overcoming such fear and hopes it will be sharp enough to penetrate the hearts of those who need it, even if just one isolated heart, like her own.
There is no law against it, nothing to restrain. She is free, as you are, to make art with the workings of an independent mind. She is free, as you are, to explore a role in any myth and discover what is true, or what is truer than this.
May you not be an Unwise Hawk
It's not for you