Towards Freedom


“You Parting Your Red Sea” by Michael Black

We are teaching ourselves to crochet. Yesterday, we started by making yarn balls. Mani observed that hers came out hard-packed, like snowballs that would seriously leave an egg on your forehead if for some reason they were to collide with your face. Mine were soft, no doubt more likely to unravel. We chuckled at the obvious. I unravel more often, which is one the ways I move towards freedom. Every time, I come back a little stronger.


Passover is coming up. It’s that time of year. The anniversary of Selma just passed. How many people are walking today towards freedom? Each of us alone, all of us together? We will tell the story again, as we do every year, of enslavement, of injustice, of deprivation, of leadership, of plagues and of miracles. And then the Red Sea will part and the women will dance with timbrels, and it will be on us to not stop there but to keep walking the talk that is very much a reality for millions of people, and I don’t mean people faraway, or people in terrible news stories or YouTube videos we can pause or click away from. I mean people in our own schools, neighborhoods, cities, and towns. I mean people under our own roofs. I mean us. I mean myself.


Towards freedom looks like standing on one leg on a green yoga mat in the bedroom where we eat, sleep, write, read, crochet, talk, laugh, cry, get dressed, get undressed, stretch, yawn, moan, complain, give thanks, and wake up. It means stretching as something that never, ever just happens all by itself. It’s not an autonomic function, though the breathing part is. Tree becomes dancer becomes half-moon. Towards freedom means transmutation.


Last night, on that same mat in fact, I sat facing the wall after the stretching. Everything became very quiet. And I saw things, kind of like cave drawings of my future, some old markings on a new path. And there was a message these came with. It said: Don’t worry about it. Just let things happen. Move towards freedom by moving through the days as they are, and the rest will unfold without effort. Just leave your phone on and keep your heart open.


I was washing the dishes. My thoughts were doing that useless swirling thing about things not even worth naming, and then I got pissed off, not at myself, not at the housework, but at the gnarly collision between ego and inner critic. So I lifted the plastic drain cover and swooshed the water around, washing both away. And then I got on my mat. This was not complicated. It was good. It was a move towards freedom.


Today’s freewrite prompt, courtesy of Mani. Want to join me? Set your timer and keep your hand moving. What you write doesn’t matter. It’s just practice. It’s moving towards freedom, 10 minutes at a time.

Image: “You Parting Your Red Sea” by Michael Black

2 thoughts on “Towards Freedom

  1. Nicki says:

    Mani has some phenomenal prompts! That inspire the most incredible writing. I was about to say how I was longing to be in the presence of the two of you and your gorgeous writing minds… and then I realized I am! Thank you both <3



Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s