My throat is protected by fierce warriors. They have been standing guard for many years. In childhood, they protected me. I spoke the truth far too often then. I told my father his nose looked crooked as I gazed at his reflection in the bedroom mirror. I questioned why my smiling mother was so sad. I called their fighting “fighting,” and was told it wasn’t fighting at all. My warriors listened well and learned the lessons. They stood guard. They knew what needed to be done to keep me safe. The words I once spoke clearly and freely now died on my lips and dripped down to my stomach where they grew ripe and fermented.

My warriors saw the strange looks on people’s faces as I told them of the angels I saw, ripped through the fabric of the world as I knew it. They heard the giggles of the girls in church as I spoke with fervor about religious things. They heard the awe and wonder of my parents as they told the story of my three-year-old self finding the lost plane tickets miles away in the gutter. They knew by the frequent telling of the story that such stories were uncommon and peculiar. The warriors acted as a barely porous cork, allowing only wisping drifts of the powerful me to make it past my throat. They wove my disguise, sticky strands of Maya, interlaced and hung on my aura like so much cloth on a starving man.

In adulthood, they stood guard as the stones and slings of outrageous fortune pummeled me nearly to death. They grabbed at the words, the biting phrases of anger, the black drops of sorrow, and held them, arms full to bursting, to keep them from escaping and causing me harm. They kept me from speaking fences of separation from all I knew of love and acceptance. They kept me safely comfortable in the world I had created for the shining growth of my soul.

And then came the time I started to fight them. I grabbed my rusted sword by the hilt and thrust blindly at my guardians, and they blinked and dodged, confused by my sudden attack. As I begged and pleaded and cried for release from them, they wept at my betrayal, yet defended me still. Like a mother crying into her pillow at night but continuing to serve her teenage daughter bread, they soldiered on in their duties.

Dearest warriors, fierce defenders, may I lull you now to sleep? My heart shakes in fits of sudden seizures with the fulness of stifled love. The kundalini mother in me longs, desperately, to reunite with her beloved Shiva, meeting at the crown of godhood. My eyes, bleary from straining to see through the shroud of layered Maya, long to see from the true eye. My soul, unfurling like a spiraled frond, finds no room to stretch her legs or stand tall. Hunched and aching, she longs to straighten at long last and claim her place in my eager, receptive body.

My warriors, I plead with you to lay down your weapons and pick up the keys to the locks that lay unused at your bare feet. Walk with me, side by side, arm in arm, and transform yourselves into the locksmiths, the ushers, the gilded, winged seraphs of wind and ethers and glittering Truth. May your discarded weapons pierce the rotting bits of unspoken fears and render them lifeless. Walk with me. Oh, how I need a friend.

I lovingly release you from your duties. I thank you for your service. I seal with a kiss on both of your armored cheeks my gratitude. Let us transform together. The mother and father are calling. Their voices echo near. They long to embrace. You need only turn the skeleton key and let the door blow open.

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