Because I, the distillation of an abused child, live inside my head…a small room with a door that went away. Because I view the world through a window with panes glazed in old glass; full of ripples, bubbles, and cloudy in places. Because I never venture outside this room to feel a breeze upon my face that is felt by other faces. Because the windowsill has smooth-worn grooves that match the callouses on my folded arms; and a greasy smudge on the glass from where my nose so often presses against it. Because this room is full of echoes; haunting voices of the past that can be heard through the walls, and never fully fade. Because those voices are the ones that taught me…back when things were absolute. Because I was always their child, never my own. Because this room is where I fled to when I began to realize that those who were the foundation upon which all is built might themselves be broken. Because I had already learned shame and fear and guilt. Because I was broken before I found it and learned to hide in isolation. Because here is where I practiced being whoever I needed to be…and in so doing, pretended that I was no longer alone. Because here I discovered how to hide myself, falsely believing that this kept the inside safe…that only the shell could be wounded. Because this is where I learned to lie to myself…the greatest being that it was to the world that I lied. Because within this room I found pens that gently eased from white paper its virginity as I began my struggle towards understanding. Because, through my window, I see wonder in faces beholding that broken maidenhead as they glimpse a world viewed through bubbles in rippled glass. Because their glances briefly flicker to my room, my window…to me. Because I can almost pretend that I am one of them. Because, through my window, I can see another house, another window, another nose pressed against clouded glass. Because I yearn so much for what I can nearly see though that glass…almost as much as I fear it. Because I can hear the nib of a pen tap on glass and scratch on vellum in the room behind that other window. Because, in my fear, I am no longer alone. Because I must.
Laying pen to paper, I begin to dance.
BanWynn aka Suta Sunmanitu (Tough Coyote) is a hermit, hippie, experimental beat poet, speculative fiction writer, nature photographer, cultural historian, social activist, NA pipe carrier, husband, father, adult survivor of child abuse, mentally ill, disabled veteran, gay, pagan Cancer with a criminal record. And he uses every bit of that in his writing. He loves to create but hates the job of finding good homes for his work and is attempting to train his Border Collie to become his agent. He lives on a small, 400-yo farm in southern Sweden in the middle of a remote forest grown over a Viking village gone a thousand years.
–Art by Milton G. (Paradise Found)