There is a place that is filled with the energy of heavy souls and the giggles of girls that grew up together; Girls that learned from each other about life and culture, boys, food, travel and the meaning of family and good friends.
This safe place is filled with people I never would have met if my life didn't take the turn it did when I was 10 years old and we moved to Queen Anne Hill.
Our younger days were filled with tomfoolery, piano lessons, choir practice, Esther's amazing cooking, Bill's cigar's, new trinkets, new diets, crass talk, and his openness about life and living.
When I am with the Du-Grafs I am in a safe place and they each hold a significant place in my heart.
As we've grown into our adult women skin we have become mothers, writers, teachers, artists and jazz singers.
We've moved away from our childhood homes, we traveled to faraway lands. We've taught in prisons and we've seen the other side of the United States that many never will.
When we return from our life journeys, we reunite in our hometown of QA where whispers of our past fill the warm summer air. We kiss and tell stories over good food, jazz or hip hop in the background and Bill's cackle fills my ear every time.
My life would not be the same without these lovely souls. I know that for sure.
I am inspired by each one of them and I am grateful for their kindness and authenticity over the years.
My Farabella, Isabella, Lauren, Esther and Bill (and Marcelina)...I love you grande...I always have...I always will.