life: acoustic & amplified

poetry, quotes & thoughts about life

stylin’ myself

  
I have always loved fashion

I still remember my shiny red rain boots 

before I was even in first grade. 

that blue satin dress

with puffy sleeves,

the purple gingham smock top worn with white bell bottoms. 

I still remember the feeling 

of falling in love with the words 

‘desert boots’ on the school bus. 

all through my life fashion has been

my field of study

what looks good with what, 

on which body type,

what shoe looks best with what look,

it all matters in some weird way, 

and yes, I am a believer in

shoes make the outfit. 

BUT…

There are days when I enjoy 

carrying on a family tradition 

of really bad fashion

I remember my grandmother

free and easy

in old men’s pants with rips and tears in unfortunate places

old shirts, ripped and shabby. 

Plaids and stripes of different colors and generations

smelling of pipe tobacco and mothballs,

mixed with house coats and bare feet,

occasionally high heels from a different day.  

I remember my embarrassment,

and my wonder at her courage,

to wear these things 

in public

(Declaring I would NEVER do such a thing)

and then to dance in them for us, 

my cheeks would burn

the many times she blatantly revealed to all present 

She was ‘commando’ 

(long before I knew what that term meant)
I remember my Aunt Margie

wearing ripped and way too thin 

cotton 

T-shirts and long-johns

Mis-matched and 

way to revealing 

to be comfortable

for anyone but her. 

My Uncle Buddy used to say,

A stitch in time…saves embarrassment! 

Neither listened. 
I smile at myself today when I chose a mix of plaids and stripes,

colors clashing cheerfully,

sweat pants and flip flops

my hair flying in the air

I wear a smile and there’s passion in my eyes. 

Revealing my faith 

and the firm belief that,

in a moment, 

anything could happen. 

It makes me happy every time

I catch my colorful, jumbled reflection in a mirror,

or the microwave door. 

I feel connected and rooted to my ancestors. 

The ones of family folk lore, 

who wore fur coats in the summertime and had fights in the middle of church –

sisters pushing each other off the organ stool…

just because their hair looked good that day 

and they wanted to be seen…
yes, I am a descendant of colorful characters,

ones with imagination and courage,

ones with flair and the brass to stand proud 

and pull off their living, 

and fashion, with

style and grace, or at least,

loads of panache 

and silliness. 
I am now older, 

and a wee bit wiser

from that easily embarrassed, trying to fit in,

 girl I used to be.  

thankfully I have grown comfortable in my own skin. 
I now realize 

the true power of fashion 

is the reflection and revelation of how we view ourselves. 
the true power of style

is the reflection and revelation of our character and creativity. 
the true power of beauty

is the reflection and revelation of how well we know our own personal value(s) –

and respect the value(s) of those around us. 
today I stand in the power of my heritage

the beauty of each person’s worth,

though you will need to look behind and beyond

these stripes and plaids. 

At first glance you may think I made a mistake with my wardrobe today. 

I may not seem to know much about fashion. 

But if you take the time to look,

with new vision, 

you will know I chose this on purpose 

and you will begin to see 

the vastness of this gift,

this legacy I have just begun to 

fully love and appreciate:

beauty is in each one of us,

style is knowing the truth 

of our beauty within 

and letting it shine!
AL

 

Listen to Tony Bennet & Lady Gaga sing Lady is A Tramp http://youtu.be/ZPAmDULCVrU

photo sources found on www.pinterest.com/al513 

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