To the Modern Wild Woman.
“Within every woman there lives a powerful force, filled with good instincts, passionate creativity, and ageless knowing. She is the Wild Woman, who represents the instinctual nature of women. But she is an endangered species.” ~ Clarissa Pinkola Estés, Women Who Run With the Wolves
Now, if you are wondering what is meant by Wild Woman, you can google its definition. However, all you will come across are sexual, party, alcohol and drug-related qualities that will serve an epiphany of yours as you continue swallowing these words with your vision.
Contrary to popular belief, a Wild Woman is not a die-hard party animal (not that there’s anything wrong with being that, but this definition is not the accurate one for the coupling of the words Wild and Woman).
If you google the definitions of those words separately, you will come across something like this:
Wild /wʌɪld/ adjective: (of an animal or plant) living or growing in the natural environment; not domesticated or cultivated.
“a herd of wild goats”
Synonyms: untamed, undomesticated, feral; unbroken; fierce, ferocious, savage
uncultivated, natural; native, indigenous;
Woman /ˈwʊmən/ noun: an adult human female.
“a jury of seven women and five men”
Synonyms: lady, girl, member of the fair/gentle sex, female;
Therefore, through connecting these two not-that-accurate definitions, your mind can get a glimpse of what a Wild Woman is. If you are a Wild Woman at heart reading this piece, I’m sure you cringed at the sight of the third synonym of the definition of the term Woman. For those who don’t get why we cringed, scroll upwards, read it again, and realize how Google automatically defines our sex as the gentle one.
Here lies the source of the silencing of our wilderness.
Let’s carry on.
The modern Wild Woman is everywhere. Hidden in the nooks of society, constantly baffled by existential crises. She could be your mother, sister, best friend, colleague, teacher, boss, or even you.
The Wild Woman is she who doesn’t look away when you accidentally lay your eyes on hers. She is aware of the power her gaze holds, and she is not afraid of entrancing those who are blessed by it. She is the one who steps into the room and lifts your head up to make sure of whether or not you are still in an architectural structure, or if you have been teleported to a deep forest somewhere afar.
The Wild Woman bewilders you. You can see her avid presence, smell her soothing existence, taste her serene words on your tongue, and involuntarily be knocked over into oceans of confusion because she reminds you of the rebirth of the wild women you have known in past lives and whose nature you have forgotten about.
There is a scent of fresh Earth and wildflowers in the movement of the Wild Woman’s figure as she walks past you. You see, she casts spells with her steps. She reminds you of your roots.
And as she leaves your perimeter, you observe how her bare shoulders control her anxious hands, and how her gentle waist hurriedly moves the particles of the air as she escapes the buildings that lock her in, that suppress her lust for the wild, for the unknown, for the mysteries that breathe life upon her thirsty spirit.
She escapes the buildings and runs hastily to the vehicles, the buses, the legs, to anything that would help her in her great escape from the modern-day prisons for a few hours — her job, her husband’s garrulous family dinner conversations, her meetings with the bank, with the reunions with friends she did not even want to reunite with, from anything that made the Wild Woman in her scream, “Get out of there, now.”
But sometimes, most of the times, she doesn’t get out. She stays. Her veins rip each other to shreds as her body begins implementing her decision to stay, but she does. Even though it feels like she is running a knife through her wrists, she stays.
Most of you don’t see how the modern-day Wild Woman is in constant inner suffering.
She might be sitting there, facing you, with one leg crossed neatly over the other, her smile appearing as genuine as could be, but as the voice within her articulates that soon-to-be disrespected command, her eyelashes shiver at the rush of the tears that suddenly conquer her eyes like a hurricane, and her toes start to notice how irritating those heels actually are, and her head begins to burn from the remembrance of how the hair straightener burned her precious locks like fire.
But the Wild Woman has become a master at hiding her wild. She notices the changes that befall upon her embodiment as her spirit aches to be let free, but she remains quiet.
She has learnt self-control in the schools that gave her detention when she started dancing in the middle of the lecture, in the looks of disdain that people rested upon her face every time she voiced her opinion too loud, too feisty, and too unapologetic.
Her persistent intuition screams and burns its throat, screaming, “Get out of there, now,” but because the Wild Woman has learned to silence the voice of the inner goddess within her, she stays where she is, afraid of how following the wilderness inside her would backfire on her good-girl reputation, her modest salary, her upright honor.
She stays seated at those dinner tables and office desks and laundry machines and the messy beds she didn’t even feel like laying her naked body in during the after-work hours she looks forward to in order to dance in her living room, to draw or write or sing or do anything that would make the Wild Woman within her calm down for a little while before being silenced over and over again when societal duties call.
To all you women who are reading this:
You are not only a member of the ‘fair and gentle sex’.
In fact, those adjectives are not the only ones we are meant to be looked at by.
We are creatures of the wild. Our presence holds a mighty power without which the cycle of birth and rebirth could not go on. Do not look at yourself with contempt. Do not force your thighs to suffocate in those tight business skirts if they are hurting you. Do not continue with that lover if he is not truly worthy of being a lover. Do not cater to those idiotic fears planted within you by the wicked gardeners of society.
When your intuition speaks to you, respond with gentleness. Do not silence it with but‘s and what if‘s. The words that tap upon the doors of your mind are the words of the goddesses who have been burnt at the stake for being too wild, too woman. Let your heavy thoughts rest amidst the petals of daisies and the mosses of the forests.
Return to the mother who incessantly calls your spirit to melt within her tender arms through the words that echo in your ears every time you are somewhere you do not belong. Empty your palms of moisturizers and make way for earth and sea-water remnants. Empty your throat of giggles you force yourself to voice in order to prove your presence in a room.
Instead, yell and scream and make them hear what you have to say whenever you have to say it. Do not imprison yourself in walls that will only steal your precious breaths and make you question the beauty of existence.
And most important of all, when you hear your spirit telling you, “Get out of there, now,” do it. Get out. Go to the nearest forest, and be the Wild Woman you are when no one is watching.
Perla Tsoler Kantarjian is an English Literature and Linguistics student from Beirut who spends most of her time flowing in circles inside her hula hoop, allowing her thoughts to mingle and mix in the rush of the act of the spinning, and before she gets nauseated from the twirling, she places her lavender-scented words upon her typewriter, her writing blog, anything that could preserve the magic of the thoughts that only come to her for ephemeral periods of time. She also finds herself constantly amazed by the wild and unthinkable depths the human mind can dig deep into when left beside the ocean, or inside a forest. Perla is also the founder of the first official dreadlock studio in the Middle East, Dread’em Up – Beirut. She is currently working on her very first novella. You may find her writings on her blog.