This is a powerful and poignant piece of writing by Lily Burana via Longreads.
I found her writing to be vivid, full of colour and movement.
There was one line that really stood out to me: even though I have not shared the authors contexts and experiences, it struck me as holding the power of #metoo, watered by the tears of every victim of abuse, exploitation and oppression who looks back on their lives and wishes they could be different.
“Just because money makes you say Yes doesn’t mean the body doesn’t store No in its memory — as sorrow, as trauma.”
I, too, store trauma in this way, although my trauma has come from very different sources. In that sense, despite our different backgrounds and stories, her pain resonates with mine.
I recommend this essay, Elegy in Times Square, best read with an open mind and an empathetic soul.
Lily Burana | Longreads | January 2019 | 8 minutes (1,880 words)
Before Disney sprinkled corporate fairy dust over Times Square and turned it family-friendly, Josef and I worked there. Not together, but at the same time. Not underage, but barely legal. He was a go-go boy at the Gaiety on 46th Street. I was a peep show girl at Peepland on 42nd. Those were dangerous days. Between crack, AIDS, heroin, and that old stand-by, booze, if you weren’t leveled, you were blessed, watched over by some dark angel. We believed we were among the lucky ones.
We didn’t have anything resembling guidance or even common sense to rely on. What we had was the dressing room tutelage of elders scarcely old enough to drink, and the backbone of every sex industry transaction — commodified consent. Customers grabbed whatever they could, based on whatever you were willing to endure. We…
View original post 1,930 more words