July Hudson River, Ursula Schneider 
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Thank-you 5am, for inducing peace in me.

I should feel nervous for the next coming day. Instead I feel peaceful, lucid, understanding, and dare I say content. I feel as though no matter what happens, I will work it out. I will be okay.

I hear baby birds chirping from my window, and I sing back.

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Becoming

I would like to be okay simply sitting in the dark 
without fidgeting, without defense for my body
which naively believes rigidity protects you
from the man waiting and licking 
his mouth in the closet

I would like to to jump fear hurdles
with mindful ease and hushed eyelids
even though I have tied my legs together
with a red ribbon binding down to my ankles
just in case

When I was a little girl I would touch everything twice
clothes in department stores, my mothers left thigh
forks and paper bags, doorknobs, utensils 
and my newly discovered breasts

The nauseous morning when I became a woman,
when the man in the closet ate me whole
I pushed him away twice 
but only twice

I was not a woman yet
I was only becoming

"It is a sign of great inner insecurity to be hostile to the unfamiliar."
Anais Nin
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"Anyone who has known life in the Sahara, its appearance of solitude and desolation, still mourns those years as the happiest of his life. The words “nostalgia for sand, nostalgia for solitude, nostalgia for space” are only figures of speech, and explain nothing. But for the first time, on board a ship seething with people crowded upon one another, I seemed to understand the desert."
Antoine de Saint-Exupery
"Mastery requires endurance. Mastery, a word we don’t use often, is not the equivalent of what we might consider its cognate — perfectionism — an inhuman aim motivated by a concern with how others view us. Mastery is also not the same as success — an event-based victory based on a peak point, a punctuated moment in time. Mastery is not merely a commitment to a goal, but to a curved-line, constant pursuit."
Sarah Lewis