Writing Me Back to Mat(t)er, 1

This is the first in a series of snippets from my memoir, Writing Me Back to Mat(t)er (a working title). Please let me know what resonates with you.

gypsy danceFrom the Prologue

…for many women the relentless effort to be good had prevented the development of a more authentic voice.[1]

For centuries, our culture has disdained matter, and so deep and so unconscious is our contempt for the body that we cannot see the rejection of the living body… Mothers and grandmothers for generations have despised their female bodies, their sexuality… The unspeakable black hole that many women face in their dreams is that place of rejection.[2]


… mother and gypsy are one…[3]


I am Silence I am Song

I am Gypsy I am Ghost

I am Hestia I am Aphrodite

I am Madonna I am Eve

I am Mother I am Me


I am three and all I want is a tambourine. I want to make it jingle, I want to make it sing. I see the women twirling and stomping, clicking their castanets, banging and shaking their tambourines, those flamenco dancers. Bright, full skirts and black full hair flare as they spin. Silver in their ears, color at their throats. The music pulses in my stomach in time with my pounding blood. Although tiny, I feel their passion in my body as if I was spinning there beside them. Once home, I can’t contain the fever those women have burned in me. The living room becomes my stage, my heart beat my drum.

[1] Belenky, Mary Field. Women’s Ways of Knowing, 209

[2] Woodman, Marion. Leaving My Father’s House, 362

[3] Woodman, 364


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