The women of Lake County Jail had a performance on 12/16/11 and it was a joy. Millie, the aforementioned actress from my blog entry on 12/13, was superb and has taken a shine to the stage.
I asked her for permission to share some of her ideas with you. She obliged my request and I couldn't be happier.
Her sass and wit are things one cannot teach, and her writing is revelatory. It is at all times sarcastic, sincere and heartbreaking.
She was asked to talk about what she believed. An exercise we do frequently. She writes:
1. That there's something truly evil in Waukegan's water.
2. That most people want/need just enough information about you to categorize you.
3. Sometimes a fake wedding ceremony can/should be pulled off.
4. Jail is the worst experience of my life but I've never laughed so hard.
5. Cats can be used as dust mops. She underlines and makes bold strokes in her writing.
She scrawls her name at the bottom of the page in block letters.
Millie has probably been my biggest source of humor in what has been a stressful few months preparing for the show. But one writing in particular stood out to me, and it didn't make me laugh. She wrote:
Be like the air in thew ay that I hold you. And in the way you see through me. Pass through the walls, through these locked doors and I'm free again. Free to keep forgetting the part of me that I've lost. The air of me. The air that is you. We wander as we please but not too far form each other. No. Not far from home or our youth. The air is fine and sweet over here. Here with you, dear. I keep it close and pretend it's not just a dream... A cartoonish heart is doodled in the dead space of the page. She continues...
Be like the water and take me under. Take me down deep and drown me in forgetting, forgetting the part of me that I've lost. I'm like a current now and so are you We keep moving together and not too far apart. Nothing stays the same this time. So much here but I wish I was there...
Be like the earth in the way you grow me up. Keep your worms and roots a secret. I dig at you, wonder what's beneath. There's tunnels and so much inside you. I want to leave so much but you keep me inside of you...
When she reads this aloud to the class we are silently stunned. It's the type of moment people like me live for. Shock and awe.
December 21, 2011