Friday, September 28, 2018

Down By The River

The woman had come forward, and it was all most untoward and disturbing.

Something had to be done.

The men, being men of action, did something.

“Oh well,” they sighed, tying heavy weights to her legs. “Time to carry her down to the river and see if she’s telling the truth. It would have been easier if she’d come to us right away, when the water was warmer. Such a shame, such a shame.”
“I’ll tell you my theory,” the eldest one said. “I believe she made a clay statue to look just like him, then bewitched it into life.”
“A sensible explanation,” the rest murmured. “If only she hadn’t, it would never have attacked her.”
“Women must be careful,” the eldest said.

“Take off the weights before you threw me in the river,” she said. “If you don’t, I won’t be able to swim.”
The man looked grave and stern. “Why these demands before swimming?” they asked. “Wouldn’t a truthful woman be *eager* to swim?”
“This isn’t fair,” yelled the onlookers. “It isn’t right!”
“To be sure, to be sure,” the men replied. “But you must admit, we are doing it.”

"If only you had evidence," the men mourned. "But you have none."
"I named a man who saw it," she said. "He's at his home now."
"Yes," the men agreed. "But unfortunately he is there, and we are here."
"You *carried* me here," the woman said.
"No time for questions," said the men.

Some women were watching from a distance.
"It happened to me, too," one called.
"And me," said another. "It was just like she said."
"And me," whispered a third.
"If only those women were not watching from such a distance," the men said, sadly. "We might hear them. Alas."

"How dare you," screamed the accused man. "How dare you say such things about me."
"You've been through so much," murmured the other men. "So much."
"But is it true?" asked a woman.
"How dangerous," the men warned, "If we asked that, we'd have to ask all the other men that, too."

The woman struggled for a while as she sank.
"Did sinking mean she was lying or that she was telling the truth?" asked a young man.
"Who cares?" said the eldest.
They all laughed. They laughed and laughed.
Some women were there, watching from a distance.


  1. This kills me. I am dead. I am either floating or weighted to the bottom, I am not sure.

  2. We all need a way to process what's going on. Your story has inspired me to write, even if in a journal or something.

  3. To live with my secret for 55 years and not being able to put into words what happened wondering why I felt this way very alone but being a mother of four Sons and to explain to them what happened to me and I can thank for putting it into words they will understand

  4. Hi A.R.M.
    StreetArtGlobe ( just popped you into my feed for your twitter content, which came from ArtFido. Do you have plans beyond an excercise of empathy to get conscious men together to support the restructuring/reframing/retelling of how women should be treated by men? From Men, to Men for the sake of Men, but in the end to balance things out for Womenkind? It feels disingenuous to rant bravely - I'd rather be quietly in the background making sure men understand that a change is coming. And this comes from a man who was molested by female teacher while in high school. If you have plans for building a wave of empathy and integrity, I'd love to help and so would a lot of my male friends.

  5. Thank You for this and the "kick in the nuts"analogy. Empathy from my partner is what is missing. I met a guy recently who said he learned his behaviour from copying other men. This resonated through all my relationships and led me to ask "if your most personal relationships are with women and you learn by copying then why do you not learn empathy?" It seems women can affect men but only men can change men. There must be an unspoken rule that a man cannot copy female behaviour, cannot let a woman teach them anything. After I've healed from his use, abuse and neglect of me I'm always left with a deep sadness that I could not help him to heal but not for the lack of trying. At least I've stopped blaming myself for "not loving him enough". It's not just men don't give women empathy, it's also because men can't receive empathy, have no idea what to do with it either way. I don't think anyone can be fully human without it. Part of the Human Spirit, which is totally wonderful (in American - awesome)

  6. There must also be life in us. If the force of a flowing river is powerful, all kinds of plants will grow alongside it and bear fruits. These fruits become food for us. The leaves become medicine for healing.sound of nature

  7. I just wanted to commend you for writing about this. I am deeply thankful for your empathy.
    I recently was part of a thread that started with, "how old where you the first time your body was objectified by someone?" and in less than 8 hours it had 2100 comments describing sexual assault and rape.
    Men just really don't know.

  8. I also want to share these with you:

    Just A Bad Date

    An Open Letter To A Good Man

    I'd be happy to hear g your feedback on these


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