Naked and Alone in Chicago -OR- Naked and Afraid
Chicago is a city of great industry. Girth and grit. Tender but tenacious.
What a busy city. So bound by the invisible twine of old and new. One only politely acknowledging the other when societally required. Thew two never quite finding their equanimity in the dance.
I don’t like the word afraid, but its equally as apt to loneliness in many ways. The word afraid reminds me, as a child I grew up feeling scared of certain things in the world. Frightened even. And theres a frailty attached to the idea of fear—the word afraid invokes a residue of a weakness in me that I’ll likely spend the rest of this life scraping at until its done.
So. Realizing I am in in Chicago, fear realized, I am here alone. Naked.
Alone in the sense of are we ever REALLY alone in a city full of people? My sister lives here. The streets are filled with humans. But this being the year of the known solo woman it stops me to yearn for what could be if well. He. Was here.
Stop giving his absence power she says. This is all temporary she remembers. Lets us allow for an easier way she breaths.
The cold air brought with it a chilled sting entering her chapped nostrils. Remember why you’re here. Why you’re here. Why you’re doing any of this.
She resolved to finish packing up tonight. She headed South tomorrow. The city streets continued speak to her sharply. Only the strong survive here. Are you strong?
Nudity implies lack of clothes. But exposure its the idea it truly suggests. When you cannot hide who you are. Theres an inherent vulnerability in that requiring a hefty compact of trust.
If I show you mine will you show me yours? If I reveal to you whats true do you promise not to laugh at my reality? Can we be exposed together?
Whats worse, being naked and alone or naked and afraid. Or are they all the same.