She made it.
Beat ALL the odds to get here
Most those stories that got her to this moment have never seen the light of day….
Maybe one day.
But til then believe she’s seen some shit.
Her circles strong, her choices are wise and she cares ALOT.
She became the person she needed her whole life… and that’s all she’ll ever truly need.
Driving around the city late this night, we searched for the perfect spot to snap this space in time. To preserve this tiny and precious instance where life meant something on these prairie fields under city lights. The first place we went, the chain link glowed silver with razors edge glistening in the moonlight. Only 4 stories up, the buildings around towered and guarded the moon and stars from our gaze, replacing the galaxy with a million glistening metal and reflective edges. Why would you take me here? Because no matter where I go, every single space is a place with a cascade of memories to transport me back. To literally scaling this exact same fence some 18 years ago, feet and hands clinging to this very building… over 4 stories up, the wrong move meaning the end of you. As we ran from police cars with lights that burned like cherries were red, we felt the heat from all angles. Tonight the angles were different. Memories, these photos, my perspective, my profile. This time, I sit in the moment rather than run from the 5.0. I laugh, and laugh. That’s the one thing that’s the same. Exactly the same. The laughter at the universe, at the situation, at the darkness and danger. I laugh as a woman can only, just as I laughed then as a young girl. Sweet laughter, you are everything, a breath and holler of life in the dark.
I was 15 years old when We created my alter ego, my superhero, the wise woman who watched, and cared for and tended me. First, her name was skoold gurl, then skoold one… then finally, Briskool. It was that dark night in Amiskwaciwaskahikan, in the cold deep cavern of the Central light rail transit station. Even then, Edmonton was such an unforgiving and lonely place, but especially that night. A couple run aways from supposed to be safe spaces that were soaked in alcohol and violence… these young girls called the underground their home for the night. I knew even then, that the love and tenderness of another girl was much sweeter and less destructive than any other force in the Creation, so it was with her that I chose to sit. She sang to me, sweet love songs. The first one I ever heard was “She’s got her hair permed, shes got that red dress on….When you lie, it just don’t show but i know which was the wind blows, A 40 ounce to freedom is the only chance i have to feel good even though i feel bad…” She belted out sublime with the most beautiful voice I had ever heard, and my attention was all hers. Every moment with her was a dream and an adventure, like whatever we created in that moment just made up for and canceled out all of the hurt we experienced til then. Every single time we hung out, she would call me street smart AND book smart, so with this inspiration my name was born that cold night. We hugged, held hands, and comforted each other. It was these quiet moments of intimacy that I remember and there was nothing else in that space but us . Our spirits were so much bigger and more human than these damn concrete walls around us. So we heated it up. She pulled out a fatcap, dripping with ink… this baby was going to seal the deal! “Watch this” she said, climbing up the outer shell of the two story staircase, she advanced up out of the basement floor of the LRT station. Footholds on rough stone, she climbed up to scrawl words that made life new. ‘Fucking badass’ i thought. This girl had my heart, she had my NAME. Immortalized. Briskool was born.