I want to clarify my use of the term patriarchy:

What I hold dear and clear is wholeness, healing,
and reverence for all of life.
Unconscious shadow appears in our awareness as a gift — for a reason —
to be tenderly seen, looked at, felt, and healed.
Misogyny is an old wound.
When battled against it perpetuates itself
in the basements of our lives.
This historical wound has been exposed in many forms
from economic oppression to domestic violence,
And in ways that brutally shame and pain me to name:
sex trafficking, rape, and genital mutilation.
This oppression is referred to as patriarchy.
Institutions built upon patriarchal ideologies also damage men
and perniciously leak into societal structures that plea compliance.
Our eyes have long been opened to sergeants of tyranny.

Men also grow up with toxic cultural stories that imprint upon their psyches
demanding they behave in ways that show their man-up-hood.
Behind this hood is hurt
Beneath this hurt are fears and tears of isolation
Aching to grasp, hold, reclaim innocence.
Generations of damage are unraveling through our bonds of affection.
Together we lift the compulsion to dominate.
The life of all genders restricted within the walls of patriarchy
is one of scarcity, insecurity, and endless anxiety.
We have to wonder how much a dominant man must be hurting
to violate and abuse the infinite gifts of the sacred feminine
within and all around us again and again.
When any of us enact the dominator role of abusive, power-over behavior,
our real needs for tenderness, intimacy, and belonging are not met.
We can choose to delete blind allegiance to the vast array of patriarchal structures.
By not dosing up to join the ranks
By rooting down to sacred ground
Where we are all the same
Already enough
Revealing ourselves home.