Paper Doll


I am less than a stranger

to my parents.


We lived together

for 19 years

in the same way

that deep sea creatures

might co-exist with other creatures

that they never see.


In the darkness of the ocean

invisibility is not a superpower

it’s part of the culture.

We were not defined

by perpetual darkness (as the fish were),

but had the power of sight

to perceive others

as paper dolls

or mirrors.


I am less

than a stranger

to my parents.


The familiar paper doll

(the friend from the deep sea)

betrayed them.

Shattered their mirrors

(and those clone-like reflections)

in an act

of rage.

Doll no more,

she questioned the culture

she insulted tradition

and asked,

“isn’t it strange that I don’t know you?”


I am less


a stranger


my parents.


“We don’t want to be known!”

they cried,

terrified of revealing themselves,

even to each other.

They polished the mirrors.

They hummed mantras to themselves

in the darkness.

(This. is. all. there. is.)

(Don’t. question. what. is.)


The doll that was me

left the deep

for the surface.

I found something

beyond co-existence

and I drank fully

of the light.


I wanted to bring the light

down into the depths

so I brought a different me.

I brought me,

and no paper doll

to hide behind,

and they said









than a



to my





19 years

were quickly erased


I left the culture

of invisibility.

I became visible,

but unrecognizable


my parents.


Now I am me

and I’m trying to see

that every

paper doll

is someone real.

Not a doll,

not a clone,

not a reflection in a mirror.


My parents are too.

They are real people

who can see

what has been

made visible.

My parents can see

a stranger

who ruined

their paper doll


when they look at me.


They’ve asked me to stop –

my answer:

“certainly not”,

and now

they are angry at

this stranger.


So I am less than a stranger.

I am a stranger

who asked questions

that paper dolls

aren’t allowed to ask.

I am less than.

I am distrusted.

No longer allowed

to even co-exist

in the same space.


I am less

than a stranger

to my parents.


A raw poem

I wanted to write a poem about therapy. personal, biographical, spiritual therapy. The two speakers are myself and the Creator of the universe, in a ‘conversation’ from 2008.
It is clear to me that this was the night where self-hatred ended, and I accepted a truth that I found terrifying, that I knew would change every familiar thing, would alter every relationship, would shift every paradigm.
I guess I could say that day was an earthquake in my life. Funny thing is, instead of falling into a chasm/loosing stability, I was brought out of one.




Lying on the floor alone
deep in a pit of despair.
I’m not useful.
I’m not worthy.
I’m not needed.
No purpose.
My heart is shackled.
I cannot love myself, useless and stupid as I am.
There is

Pity me!
I have nothing to give.
Nothing worthy to say.
I am as useless as a peice of rubble.
I have no value.
in your pity,
I will find some acceptance,
or mercy,
to lessen these chains called condemnation.
Pity me,
for I cannot earn
your favour.

I have no abilities.
No redeeming qualities.
to make you need me.



Beloved, listen to me,
let my voice become your reality.
I am the truth.
I will give you my life.
You will be mine, forever securely loved.

I don’t need you,
but I want you.

Let your heart hear me!
I don’t need you, but I want you!

Let the shackles be loosed!
I want you!



When you run, I will follow.
I want you to be mine.
I want you to know my love.

When you hide, I will be with you.
to me
You are beautiful.

You are beautiful.

You are beautiful.

You are beautiful.

I have never pitied you.
I have never needed you.
I will always want you.
I will always pursue you.
I will always love you.
I will always call you beautiful.

You are mine.

You call yourself rejected,
I call you loved.

You reveal yourself useless,
I declare
that you are wanted.

You confess that you are rubble,
I proclaim

that you

are beautiful.

Not needed,
but wanted.

Hear my voice,
speaking over you,
into your despair.




Pain from a place I thought was locked and buried.

is this possible?

Not pity,
but you see beauty?

My tears
begin to wash away
the lies

I can feel a place called home
where it is possible
-all things are possible-
it is possible
to be wanted,
not needed.

My disabilities, inabilities, incapacities and incompetencies
are all
They are
In a heap
from me.

I am wanted.

not for what I can do.
I am accepted.
not out of pity.
I am beautiful.

I am beautiful.

Despair vanished,
hopelessness fled.
I have found


I do – dance

I do
dance to a different tune now.
It’s the tune that
God was playing on the inside the whole time,
I ignored it
because it meant that I needed deliverance.
Dancing to that tune
would mean
being honest with my parents.
Dancing to that tune
would mean
not using
books and movies and entertainment as escapism
paying attention,
to my heart.
Dancing to this tune
asking God where the wild things are…

wanting to live like
the prophets
and disciples
in the bible.
It’s the tune
that Jonah grooved to
in the belly of the fish.
The tune
that Jesus listened to
when he whispered,
“not my will, but thine be done.”
The tune
that was playing
when Eve was created
in the garden.
The tune
that blinded Paul
and raised back to life
the man that fell
on Elisha’s bones.

is the tune
I dance to

Dancing this way…
I love it
God’s my Daddy,
and he’s watching
twirl and spin,
and be

I feel
I feel free.