Tickled Pink by Kevin Kling

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Reposted from Twin Cities PBS

Kevin is a playwright, storyteller, actor and public speaker based in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Introduced to a national audience through his regular “All Things Considered” commentaries on NPR in the 1990’s, Kevin has traveled extensively to speak on a variety of topics, including disability, resiliency, diversity, and storytelling. He has been awarded fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts, The McKnight Foundation, The Minnesota State Arts Board, The Bush Foundation, and The Jerome Foundation.

TRF is excited to welcome him as a special guest at our upcoming event, “Bodies, Brains, Trauma and the Arc of Healing”. Kevin and Matthew Sanford will come together to discuss the integral role that story and healing narratives play in recovering from trauma, both in their own processes and in the processes of others.

Tickled Pink by Kevin Kling

At times in our pink innocence, we lie fallow, composting, waiting to grow.
And other times we rush headlong like so many of our ancestors.
But rushing or fallow, it doesn’t matter
One day you’ll round a corner, you’ll blink 
And something is missing
Your heart, a memory, a limb, a promise, a person
An innocence is gone
Your path, as though channeled through a spectrum, is refracted, and has left you in a new direction.
Some won’t approve
Some will want the other you
And some will cry that you’ve left it all
But what has happened, has happened, and cannot be undone.
We pay for our laughter. We pay to weep. Knowledge is not cheap.
To survive we must return to our senses…touch, taste, smell, sight, sound.
We must let our spirit guide us, our spirit that lives in breath.
With each breath we inhale, we exhale.
We inspire, we expire. 
Every breath holds the possibility of a laugh, a cry, a story, a song.
Every conversation is an exchange of spirit, the words flowing bitter or sweet over the tongue. 
Every scar is a monument to a battle survived.
When you’re born into loss, you grow from it.
But when you experience loss later in life, you grow toward it.
A slow move to an embrace, 
An embrace that holds tight the beauty wrapped in the grotesque, 
An embrace that becomes a dance, a new dance, a dance of pink.

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