The foothills of the heart loom large
among shadows deep and purple.
I climb the winding path
through silver sage, and elderberries,
the song of the stream whispering in my ear.
From within a hermetic voice, a friend
I have not listened to in a long time:
timid, yet hoarse.
It speaks the truth, and flies on a winged arc,
glistening in the mystery of the folds.
Uncovering, discovering, recovering.
Flaming leaves rustle in the twilit breeze.
In the palm of my hand I hold a secret gift.
I will carry it to the mountaintop.
There I will bury it, release it, give it new life.
I searched and found that I have a name of kings. In an ancient language it means gift. It was chosen because in my father’s mind it was associated with outlaw. My parents were smitten by the rebellion and freedom-searching of a generation that wore flowers in their hair.
Along with my first name—a short name with lots of sound, a boy’s name in a girl’s body—came my second, or middle name. This was a cool sip of water that had Gaelic origins, and whispered and sighed, saying yes to unity and divine power. It welcomed all the gods, and spoke of its feminine gentleness.
Together, I was one. Clad in both my costumes, I became whole. I contained the sun and the moon, the male and the female. I had strength, frailty and awareness. I was the giver, and the taker. The fountain of life from whose source clear water sprung for others to drink. The one who also drew in and absorbed, and perhaps often, redistributed in one form or another. Sometimes form became ethereal, and in its diaphanous shimmering it sang into the moonlight, evoking an echo from a distant land that resonated over time. Who are you? Speak my language…
Growing up I always wanted to be a boy, and yet have come to find myself in my woman’s body and mind. A revelation in happening, I became who I was meant to be. I have walked on many paths, and am now finding the road that leads home. In its authentic moment of genesis my destiny was chosen and prescribed. My identity was written in my name—short sounding and sliding in its simmering emphasis.
Followed it was by a long whispering and secret sigh. This word was humble, and yet stood apart defining the identity of that which came before it. It made me a woman in my boy’s garb. Somehow it was my true calling and, if I could, I would have chosen it as mine—as a way to make myself known to the world around me. Not as a boy, a bandit, but as one who spoke truthfully, who in her wholeness contained wholesomeness. Who could describe the rainbow in its evanescence, and sit by the side of the river contemplating the passing water, and its shore. In that relationship—of shore and ocean—I found devotion, and also my true love, whose name speaks of salvation.
It was later, when I discovered in the gift of my name a most profound essence that had meaning beyond words. It signified that I was the bridge between opposite shores. I could speak both languages and make hands shake. Peace was in the making. I contained the power of the gift and was able to receive it.