A letter to the Goddess: do I hafta answer these questions?

Dear Goddess;

When we last met, in the place that cannot be revealed, we discussed how we could keep in touch given the issues of time, place and space — the things you say don’t really exist. You mentioned telepathy as the primary method of communication for the day-to-day stuff and I was thinking about the wisdom of that and was about to ask you something, hoping it would not sound like a dumb question but then, then you got that look. The look you get when you are about to veer far off the mandated (womandated?) Goddess path. So I didn’t ask you anything and waited instead for you to talk.

You looked at me the way you look at me when you want something and said in the voice you use when you want something from a mere mortal.

“I want you to do something for me,” you said. “Will you?”

I dared not think what it could be, and since I do not blindly answer yes — even for you — I said nothing and waited for you to continue.

“I want to receive a letter, in an envelope. Something I can touch, breathe in.”

A letter? Oh Goddess, of all the human experiences to have, you want the experience of getting a letter? I couldn’t think of anything to say, so I did not say a thing.

You went on to explain that you wanted to receive a letter with human questions and wonderings that only you could answer. I continued to listen and say nothing. I wondered if you would ever consider watching Downton Abbey: it might help you understand the soap opera of everyday human life. Sadly, there is nothing anywhere that captures the soap opera of lesbian life. My thoughts were wandering. I brought them back.

You stopped explaining things for a moment, looked at me and continued, asking me if I would, at a time of my convenience, send you a letter c/o the place that cannot be named, addressed to the human alias that you use. You asked that this letter be a handwritten one, signed with my full — first, middle and family — names. You asked me if I would do you the honour. And if I would do you the honour, would I then mark the paper with a kiss, my lips coloured with red wine or lipstick.

My first thought was, um, no, I am not going to do that for you. I don’t kiss paper for anyone. My next thought was wine or lipstick?

I looked at you intently as you asked me these things, wondering why you were asking me these things. You must have read my thoughts because you switched gears just then and asked rather pointedly that if I wish to, I could write you instead about things which confuse me. I remember how you laughed at my reaction when you said that, as my chin raised ever-so-slightly, as my eyebrow arched. You were goading me.

You smiled that smile. We both know I can say no, even to you and I smiled my smile, saying I’d think about it and then we were all air kisses and shoulder hugs and you were gone and I was back in the busy world that concerns itself with its own busy-ness and as it turned out, writing about everything and to everyone but you.

I made you no promise except to think about it, so I was certain that it mattered not one little bit that I hadn’t written you and had no plans to do so.

Perhaps Goddess, you grew impatient? Perhaps in your impatience, you created something to capture my attention? Pulled the rainbow threads? After all, you are an old-school Goddess, aren’t you? Full of human wonders and weaknesses and an obsession to meddle in the lives of us mortals for your own amusement, especially us lesbian mortals. Well, if that’s what you did, it worked.

The impulse to write you fairly flew into my mind. I got out my finest linen paper. My favourite Mont Blanc pen. Unplugged the phone, put my cell phone away and turned off the computer. Sat in my favourite spot in the house to write you a letter because there’s something that’s bothering me and it seems you are the only one I can turn to for answers. You see a few weeks ago, I received two questions in my email:

  1. “what are the words that turn a lesbian on?” and
  2. “what does it take to turn a straight married woman into a lesbian.”

My initial reaction? I gagged and couldn’t breathe and broke out in enormous hives — I am seriously allergic reaction to dumb questions. I rescued myself with my EpiPen.

My second reaction was simple: Shouldn’t these questions be going to you? But then I realized that perhaps these are simply questions about sex and power. So yes, they should be going to you and not me.

My third reaction was not as simple: Did you plant those questions? They can’t possibly be real questions asked by real people. Can they? If they are questions by real people, are they serious questions? And if they are serious questions, are they questions from anyone of any intelligence? Maybe these are questions sent by the drones from the highly secretive but effective Cult of the Dumb Question. That’s the group sworn to prove that evolution is wrong and to turn the clock back to 1855.

Then I got to work once the swelling went down from my initial reaction:

  • First, I wrote the questions on a piece of wood. Big letters.
  • Then I asked one of my more power-tool inclined lesbian friends to carve out each letter of each word in question.
  • Next, I mounted each letter on a pole, and assembled the letterpoles forming the words in the questions.
  • Finally, I stuck the letter poles in a two different marble bases. Each marble base is one question, in full 3D colour. Life size, because I needed to get the questions out of my head. To see them. Touch them. I figured that if Duchamp could mount a urinal in a gallery and called it art, I could create sculptures of questions that people asked me, even if the questions were asked by people and not a Goddess playing tricks.

Once the sculptures were assembled, I walked around each question and when I finished doing that, sat in front of each one, in half lotus, to meditate and contemplate the meaning of the question. I thought of each question separately, deeply.

Words to turn on a lesbian? Because reading from a shopping list of words in a certain order unlocks the keys to a woman’s mind. Or body. Silly people. It’s not like I’m going to give such a well-guarded secret away. I’d be disbarred from every secret lesbian organization I don’t belong to and one or two that I do. Goddess, tell me true: did you or did you not plant that question? Either way, I am not going to answer it.

As for the other one, you know I don’t agree with the tribe of lesbian hunters who view straight women as prey particularly straight, married women. Worse than many men, those lesbian hunters are.

If these questions aren’t from you, or from the cult, are they from women who think that they might be lesbians and who wonder how to go about meeting other lesbians? Or are they simply dumb questions asked by dumb people? You know my position on dumb questions — contrary to public opinion and grinning human resource/therapist and workshop facilitator types: there are indeed dumb questions in this world. Everywhere, every day. In fact there are so many dumb questions just about lesbians in the queue of the National Dumb Question Collection Centre that I wasn’t able to pawn the questions off there either: it has a seven-year backlog.

Here’s the thing: Maybe I don’t hafta answer anything. Maybe I’m not gonna. Maybe I’ll pretend that both questions were lost in the spam file and that I never saw them.

So the truth is that I don’t know what to think about these questions. They are confusing. What is the real question behind each of those questions? Should I care? Should I answer? I’m sure you can see why I am writing you this letter. Goddess, I need your help. Please. I need to be unconfused and only you can unconfuse me about these questions.

My hope is that this letter provides some of what you wanted and that you have an answer to ease my confusion. Perhaps a dream intervention? Or a worldwide ban on dumb questions about lesbians? To be honest, I continue to harbour a suspicion that you’re behind it and if you or one of your minions are behind these questions, you and me need to talk. Immediately.

For now, I will hold my suspicions and my confusion in abeyance until I hear from you. Until I get answers: What is it with all these dumb questions about lesbians?

With the warmest of lesbian regards, a hope for a swift Goddess response…

… and many air kisses and shoulder hugs,

Frances

About FS

Toronto, Canada. Writing about slices of life, the moments and minor details of which come into awareness or out of imagination and the spaces inbetween. On hiatus from writing anywhere else but here ... at least for now.
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10 Responses to A letter to the Goddess: do I hafta answer these questions?

  1. tomboy says:

    I do feel sorry for your ‘dumb’ people. Sometimes, people don’t know the goddess personally, and have to resort to wise women like you to answer their questions, or relay them onto the goddess herself. This world will never stop asking questions, so here’s mine- What’s the best way to tell someone you love them? Might have to make blocks for that one too and wonder what has happened to our world to make it so dumb.

    • FS says:

      Dear Tomboy; We are a questioning species. Very true. It’s also true that not everyone has a personal access to the Goddess. I can’t tell you the levels of meditation and hells I had to go through to get that. Not that I had any awareness that the process was a Goddess process and that it would get me to Her, but if I knew that, I might not have embarked on that journey at all. Life is surprising. Love is too.

      In a million, trillion, gazillion years never would I ever think that is a dumb question. In fact, I think it’s one of the smarter questions we can ever ask since it demonstrates a sweet thoughtfulness and consideration.

      Does she know? Does she have any idea? Is this love as in, in love? Congratulations, if you are asking this question for you. A happy, unsettled time, isn’t it? Hmmmm… the best way to tell someone you love them. Shall I share with you a quote? “Once the mind releases itself to love, there are suddenly a thousand obvious ways to show it.” And perhaps to that I could add, there are suddenly a thousand ways to tell it, too.

      Telling her you love her? The best way? There’s no single answer to that thoughtful question. When you feel it and you want her to know and wanting her to know overrides whatever fears you might hold about telling her.

      The best way is the way that suits you and her. A whisper in her ear, or a roar at the park when you’re both swinging on the swings. When both your heads are buried in books, or you’re walking along some quiet street, being quiet with each other. Or waking up in the morning. Maybe you write it on her arm. For her to watch you do it, then read it… or tell her when she is being exactly who she is that you love so much: when you catch her in the act of being herself, whom you love. For instance, say that she’s the only person on the planet who you know to spend time digging through the cupboard for crackers to have with Nutella. A good time to smile at her and tell her then.

      There is no best way, really. Perhaps some better ways than others: Privately works, when the two of you are alone, although some people might like the rush of being told quietly in the middle of a crowded room. You can see how that might work for some and not for others. Some might say it in a note, or a text. I am not so sure about that: for the first time of love-telling, I tend to favour telling in person.

      There’s no single answer to that thoughtful question. The best way is openly, honestly, and with your whole heart. There is nothing so strong, scary, warm and wonderful as declaring the unique vulnerability of loving someone.

      Good luck. I’m going to ponder your question some more. Mind if I use it as inspiration for a future post?

      If anyone has some thoughts and ideas, please feel free to share.

      • tomboy says:

        I think we both sort of know, but are both too afraid to say it. It keeps feeling like she’s trying to tell me, but I get too tongue-tied around her to reply or explain myself. Then there’s always the fear that your only seeing what you want to see and maybe I’m not interpreting them properly or to their full extent. I don’t know, I don’t think I’m very good at all that anyway, but I should tell her. And sure you can use it as a post, I think I need all the help I can get.

      • FS says:

        Hmmm… I will post something over the next few days: promise.

        Tomboy, you have to know that being a tongue-tied lesbian will not serve you well. There are no ‘shoulds’ in this part of life: (repeat after me: I will not should on myself today …) Should is a word of judgment, and not a good one.

        Ya know, I think if anyone was good at all this, it would be kinda weird. What you might get good at is keeping a promise to yourself: to honour your feelings and to trust your feelings. That’s not to say that everything will follow the plan you have laid out in your head. It means that you will come to accept that you feel what you feel, that you will not hide from your own feelings, and that you will manage what you feel and not be held hostage by that. You can feel anything. The rest is about how you choose to act upon what you feel.

        As for love…well, what can I say? I’ll try to find something to put in the post. 😉

        If you have the feelings that you have and if you want her to know what you feel for her and about the two of you: Take a deep breath, anchor yourself in the truth of those feelings, take some more breaths and tell her. You might be the quiet type who rarely talks about feelings, and that’s fine. But if you love her, and want her to know, and if she is not telepathic, you are going to have to use your words.

        It’s fair to wonder whether you are reading things correctly. At the same time, in the circumstance of love, of falling in love, you can only and ever take responsibility for your feelings and if the two of you are where you are, together (ish) and if it’s landed with you in love, then that’s where you are. You feel what you feel, regardless of whether you’ve interpreted everything precisely. Love and loving is not entirely subject to the laws of logic and analysis.

        Just so you know, that first time of saying “I love you” or “I’m in love with you” or the less intense, “I think I love you” or “I think I’m falling in love with you….” is always scary.

  2. natasiarose says:

    “power-tool inclined lesbian” those words totally turn me on.

  3. Malkor says:

    Those read remarkably similar like those you have in your Dumb Questions of the Day.

    The sender can only be trying to pull your leg, because if those questions are authentic, and were not spawned by a troll-brain, then I have no words to describe how sad that would be.

    Either way, doing more than putting the address on the filter-list is a waste of your time.

    Since I’m already on the topic: In one of your previous posts I saw you wrote something about internet-intimidation and hate-mail. It’s none of my business, but since you mentioned those things in your blog I assume you read through mail from some of humanity’s worst products and were at least a bit bothered by that. Again, its none of my business, but I’d recommend not to read an e-mail at all when the title or first words hint at malicious/hateful/trollish content. The less stress way – better in the long run.

    • FS says:

      Dear Malkor: Indeed: there is remarkable repetition in the dumb questions. It might be a tad depressing if I wasn’t so surprised by it. Or agonized. Perhaps even stupidity can be instructive, can have some value, if only as a real reminder of the gap that exists, the bridges still to be built between the diverse world of lesbians and those in the world who believe the somehow have implicit ownership to everything about a woman, including the freedom to explore her sexuality, her freedom to explore any identity she wishes. Changed laws do not immediately change attitudes. And I don’t want to be complacent. It’s easy: I live in Canada, where recently, a woman proposed to her girlfriend at a national hockey game — down on one knee on the ice. The crowd cheered when the mascot held up the sign that said “she said yes!” Meanwhile, in Africa, a lesbian activist was killed, leaving her partner and their child bereft.

      And thank you. I’m all for leg pulling.🙂 Laughter even. Which is why I do have to wonder if they are real. But on the off-chance that they are real, yes tragically sad. Clearly sex and sexuality education is failing miserably.

      You offer quite sage advice. 🙂. I do in fact do as you suggest: any hint of words of hate and I stop reading. Trash it. Sometimes hate is buried in the middle of a comment. I guess…my reaction to the dumb questions builds up and then along comes an even dumber question that just exasperates me and I wonder yet again how on earth do people come up with these questions. I thought putting them in a section all their own might give me a place to say the same thing over and over to the same sorts of questions. Perhaps another attempt to ignore the peanut gallery is in order.

      Thank you for popping ’round 🙂

  4. valerie says:

    I haven’t had the pleasure of meeting the Goddess…. Can you hook us up??🙂

    PS: I’m pretty sure stupid questions are meant to be ignored… much like heat rashes and headaches. Ignore them long enough, they go away….

    • FS says:

      Um. hmmm. I’m told that everyone has to find her own way to the Goddess. She’s funny that way. And likes to organize her own hooking up 😉.
      I like the strategy of ignore and have perfected it for the most part although sometimes, what I might consider a stupid question is simply a question about something I have not explained very well. So I do try — hard — to understand what the questions are all about. But these questions…are beyond reason. Or maybe me trying to find reason within them is silly on my part.

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