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An Open Letter to Neil Gaiman

The day I found out what you did

Silver lockets might as well have been

 piles of ash flowing between my fingers

Nothing was beautiful


in my basement, I curled up on a beanbag chair full of stuffing

And slept until it hurt less


It wasn’t just the assault allegations

Those were pretty bad, sure

It was the quiet whispers and casual mumbles that

You’d slept with fans

Young ones

And even if everything was above board, I couldn’t help but think

If I had lined up for hours or run into you in the right kind of club

With padded walls and restraints on the benches

Would you have ignored me because I wasn’t pretty enough

Or worse, paid attention because I was


We are not strawberries to snatch from the roadsides of life


And now that I am older and past what Orwell called “the wild rose beauty” stage

And I am a rosehip

If ever I was a rose, which is doubtful

All I can see are the lines and rows of beautiful tough mysterious Fey young women that

Keep cropping up in your work

and kept swirling in adoring eddies around your table at conventions


You knew better

You had the power

You could crush any one of them in the palm of your hand


Who would believe a young nanny over a famous author

 

You used to be the person I most wanted to have lunch with

Now all I want

Is to write better than you.


I may never be as famous; odds of that are high and stacked against me

But I can push myself harder and climb higher and feel something deeper

And if I can’t, well,

I’m at least going to try.

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