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“House” x Dominic Ganser

Jul 1, 2020

The house was never big enough to contain me.

The cracks in the walls, the chipped paint, the broken glass around it’s sides from a history of decay and destruction- it all threatened to fall in on itself with each passing day.

It held my earliest childhood memories, and became the setting of all my nightmares and dreams.

On nights when it would storm, I would hurdle underneath the blankets to protect myself from the harsh wind that would blow right through the creaky windows, and from the water that would drip in on me from the holes in the ceiling. If I was lucky, I would be able to sleep through the house shaking.

On days where we couldn’t eat dinner, going to bed early was our only other option.

Every day in that house would be a reminder of what promises there had been set for my life: poverty, struggle, and never a feeling of wholeness.

At school, we are taught to work hard, or we’ll never get anywhere in life.

If you are coming home with splinters, bruises, and even scars, that’s still not enough.

They tell you to just apply yourself more, more, and more.

It was when I saw the world outside their lens that I found a way to live. Still scared of never being able to truly do so in the violence of poverty.

It was when I was 10, staring out from my bedside window, not letting the house be something that caves in on me, but rather something that explodes outwards as I broke out from it.

Outside, I saw the world as a brilliant flash of colors.

A bee pollinating a flower. The children’s laughter as they play in the grass. Trees swaying in the warm winds. The sun that hugs you like an inviting blanket; it reminds you that you exist.

There were details of the world left out there for me to discover.

While my house may have felt demeaning, that is when I learned that I do not just live in my house.

I live on the Earth, in all its ugliness and beauty, and I have more to live for than capitalist ideas of success.

I have the power to hold success by inciting change, and by adding more color to this world.

I am bigger than I was ever told, and I am breaking out by going against oppression.

That house was never big enough to contain me.

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