Journalling to My Self

“This above all: to thine own self be true,
And it must follow, as the night the day,
Thou canst not then be false to any man.”
                              – William Shakespeare

To thine own self be true. If only it were that easy. Most of us … after many years of questionable upbringing, sibling rivalry, an education system that seemed bent on knocking the stuffing out, and a society where everything, even the pain we suffer, is measured … are still striving for a perfection that seems forever just beyond our reach.

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The long skirt flaps around my ankles, hem sodden from the splashing of the waves. A huge sandy paw mark decorates the front of my Tee-shirt.

I had woken in the dark, yearning to go to the coast. I’d not even given it a thought the night before, but suddenly it was the perfect idea, albeit a crazy whim. We left town by five a.m., racing westwards, the sun chasing us. The drive took twelve hours, but we won. The sun had a ways to go before it would set.

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“I hope you’re not afraid of ghosts.” It was more of a question than a remark.

“My father was the most sensible man I know,” I reply, “and he saw a ghost once.” My childlike confidence denies my forty years. “Besides, I’m a Celt, we invented them.” We talk some more, short disconnected sentences that only later would be threaded together to weave the magic of the moment. We stand overlooking the sweeping plains below Head-Smashed-In Buffalo Jump. It is a glorious hot weekend in July, and the preparations for the annual Powwow are underway.

“So tell me about this ghost,” I try to keep the flippancy from my voice.

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© Shena Meadowcroft

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