Keep telling these folks that everything they have and are is because of their white, male privilege.
Actually, it is because of your privilege that they are impoverished. But go ahead, keep pretending that your economic class has nothing to do with your advantages, that’s it’s all about the accident of skin and sex.
This morning I couldn’t sleep. I woke up at 4:30 and finally gave up trying to sleep sometime after 5:00. It might be the election keeping me awake. It might be one of a hundred other things that I’d like to control, but can’t. It had to do something with the backwash of the election, the great sense of loss and bewilderment I am feeling, so I wrote about it.
In the process, I wanted to use the image of the mirrors used by police, psychiatrists, and researchers, to observe subjects of suspicion or curiosity. But I didn’t know if they were called one-way mirrors or two-way mirrors. After I wrote the following piece, I googled it and found out that these mirrors are referred to as both one-way and two-way, which is interesting, but it is the discription of how the mirrors work which makes the image of them even more appropriate to what I am grappling with in my writing this morning.
I started writing a story about Clytemnestra years ago. This morning, I woke up thinking about her. Thinking about her name and how difficult it is, how unpretty. You’d have to be a queen of no small stature to pull off such a name. Since she is a fictional character, I feel at liberty to reimagine her, to lift her out of the culture a little bit, enough to consider how terribly the stories treat her. Is Clytemnestra truly the story of the passing of matriarchy as some scholars posit? The Clytemnestra we know most familiarly is the one Aeschylus created out of the older stories. There are many versions of the story. In some, she is exiled instead of executed. In some stories, her sister Helen is Polydeuces twin, in others Polydeuces and Castor are twins. The stories are ambiguous and contradictory as are the most useful mythologies. We have to make them our own. Thread together what makes sense to us and disregard the rest understanding that what we take from these myths are what we comprehend of life and that is an ever-changing mirror.
The following is an excerpt from the first chapter of the story.
Helen and Polydeuces began one night while our mother, Leda, slept in the room that Castor and I shared. It was not uncommon for her to sleep there. She often did so when Father was away looking for allies.
Castor slept in the cradle next to mine. I could see his face clearly because the moon was uncovered and the touch of its light had awakened me. Beyond Castor, I could see the outline of my mother as she slept on her back, one arm flung above her head, her hair a thick black streak falling over the edge of her bed. A shadow crept slowly across the path of the moon. A sudden wind rose and pushed against the outside walls of our room. It funneled in through our window, roughing my cheek Continue reading "Clytemnestra"