a love letter, to be free…

At a recent workshop with the warm & welcoming Joan Borysenko, we were invited to reframe a life story with a love letter written to someone for whom we held resentment.

The women in my life were alcoholics. This may or may not be to blame for the ways in which they were mocking or distant or dismissive.

The resentment in the background of this letter is an old one, congealed in the 7th grade, from a road trip taken with my mother’s mother, to Disney World, where I refused to ride the roller coaster, and she expressed great disgust…

Dear Gram,

kelly salasin, open hands, empty bowlArsenic and Old Lace.
Crab cakes from Uries.
Tea Leaves.
Belly laughs.
Late nights.
No rules.
Piles of books on your bedstand.
And on my bedstand.
And on my mother’s bedstand.

Was there anything else that the three of us shared.?

We were all petite…
One obese. One dark. One green-eyed.

We sang!
You taught me all the tunes, even the ones Mommy didn’t know, especially those….

Tora Lora Lora
Oh Paddy Dear
Bridget O’Flynn
Just a Little Bit of Heaven
Mrs. Murphy’s Chowder

The kitchen.
Do we share that too?
I suppose we do.
Intuitive cooks, the two of you.

“I don’t know, Kel, just put some in and see how it tastes,” my mother said.

“But how much?” I’d press.

I was a child who wanted to be precise. To be right. To be loved.

You wanted me to be free.

Like you had never been.

I am.

Thank you.


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