The Female Voice
Let me out, Keep me in. By Cheryl Rodes
As a writer I struggle with two personal dynamics, both dynamics are a part my female voice.
I write “female” because that’s what it is – I can never explain to a man what it feels like to walk to my car late at night in a bad neighborhood, or the burning desire to tell someone where to go after he makes an incredibly chauvinistic remark.
One dynamic wants to be kept private, safe inside. It wants to hide behind the security of my relationship, my passive spirit and the rules of society. The other wants to run free with horses, yell from the rooftop and challenge the world.
This struggle will forever be present and I’m learning to embrace both dynamics.
I’ve learned to use my “Keep me in” dynamic during arguments or disagreements, doing so prevents future pains for all involved. However, when I write a story “Let me out” can’t be stopped. Given, that I’m choosing to be a professional storyteller I haven’t seen much of the “Keep me in” dynamic.
I began my writing in poetry and now write as a screenwriter. The “Let me out” dynamic has taken my voice to a larger venue. It’s discovered how to empower it.
So when I decided to write this article I felt that I needed to revisit my “Keep me in” dynamic. I went to my old Myspace blog and it enlightened me to discover that my “Keep me in” dynamic has navigated me through some of my hardest times. The “Keep me in” is a poet and the “Let me out” is a fighter. During my weakest moments, it wasn’t the fighter that I needed—it was the poet.
I’d like share some of my “Keep me in” work, because for the past several years all I’ve been sharing is my “Let me out." now this one's for you... he left me little whispers of how it would be... yet forgetting as he does... he forgot about me... whispers lingered... words became air... so busy deciphering I didn't realize... he didn't care... so I packed up my loneliness... surveyed the land... went on my way... threw in my hand... when the storm had passed and I was still standing... it wasn't the flight that defined me, it was the landing.
what avails me is the same thing the suppresses i bind myself to endure the struggle of unbinding I walk in paths i tell myself to not take
Exhaling when my moment should be an intake feeling freedom out of my own skin
touching elation and ignoring it
smiling when no one is around
frowning when you are trying to keep up from down drinking to forget yet to expand the movement ignoring when you know that you are affecting creating verbs of frustration
webs of restraint
waltzing into time that you can never get back laughing when you know that you should cry
crying when you know that you should be strong
in my blissful avoidance i find complications
in complication i find peace
in friendship I find solace
in anger i find comfort
in me i find no one
in him i find me
yet it is the same place in which i lose myself.
i haven't cried in a long time... and yet i hurt
and i search
for a replacement
not as broken
as i feel inside
I listen to music relating to emotions of musicians
i am filled with anger
i wasn't supposed to feel this lonely
for this long
i miss his laugh
his words of destruction how come i loved
why do i feel so damn unhealthy?
my mind is working faster than eternity
ignoring the words
that my heart speaks
shipwrecked mission failed life a mess this
insomnia haunts me my solitude
i wanna smoke a cigarette i want him to like
to leave me
remove all of his scars undue the damage remove all my fear
chisel this deposit
this calcium of loathing
i want to find him
in the end
and be able to
walk away and not run
I have to admit I feel slightly vulnerable in sharing these poems. Yet, perhaps it was the one thing that “Let me out” could do for “Keep me in.”
I truly believe that this is a universal feeling for women, that deep within our voice are these two dynamics, and learning how to cherish, embrace and use them – well that’s our journey, that’s our beauty.
Cheryl Rodes was born in LA county and raised in the OC. She began acting in films and television before she began kindergarten; this produced a wonderful merge of her love for performance and her education. She obtained her first degree in theatre arts from the University of Irvine. After graduating from college, her tough vixen style and strong eyes led her to roles in several independent films. A woman of many talents, her love for being in front of the camera naturally took her behind the scenes as well. She continued her education in Screenwriting, obtaining her Masters from the University of Southern California. During her studies at USC, Cheryl began to direct her written work, discovering that her passion is to create her films. She is a managing partner at Purple Wallpaper Productions and her directorial debut, FOLLOWED, is scheduled to come out later this year.