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Writer's Block: Charmed, I'm Sure [Mar. 4th, 2008|07:03 pm]


What is a "charmed life"?
Sucking mango juice that's burst out of the fruit as it runs down the length of my forearm with the low late afternoon sun burning red. Waking to a cottage garden outside my bedroom window and a couple of pups snuggled together on their bed. Lying listless in a hemp hammock with icy lemonade only a stretch away. Having a shack out back that is filled with light, plants and good amount of space to paint and create art in.

Of course there is the meaning of the phrase true and unchanged:A life of guaranteed good fortune or invulnerability, by virtue of a charm or spell. However, that is not quite what I had in mind when I first read it. There are particular things that I would love to have guaranteed such as financial security and basic good health (healthy weight, good blood pressure, etc). Otherwise, I have to say, some of the best things have come from how everything is so incredibly not guaranteed.

I met Destiny's mom yesterday- Had I not known any better I would have sworn she is not a mom at all. Destiny told me her mom went crazy after a car accident, asked me not to laugh. She told me today that her grandmother told her that she hates her.
Jennifer wrote in her paper how she is scared at night because the cops take people away for being bad. She talks about Mexico with a fondness, yet I am sure her family risked everything to sneak her into the ghetto to give her a "better life".
Auleria cried this afternoon because other girls don't want to work with her because she takes their things. There was nothing to take, but still, they didn't want to share a space with her. She said she was dumb and no one liked her- she knows because her family said so.
Pedro comes to school everyday in the same clothes. His undershirt is different and he is a small boy, but his pants are getting shorter on him by the week.
My life today, though riddled with everything but a guarantee of good fortune or invulnerability, seems quite charmed indeed when I look at my kids. Somedays it's hard. I look out onto my students and I am amazed at their ability to survive. Some even manage to thrive. They come to school and do their best to giggle and find some joy in the smog filled, days of drive-bys, poverty, stray dogs, cheap hand me downs and broken families. Somewhere in the midst of all of that, I look at my kids and see hope in their eyes. Therein lies an innocence, still. That innocent hope that everything will be alright, that they will grow up and get out and show this world a thing or two. That alone brings a charm unto itself that I hope never ends, and eventually pulls them through.