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Archive for July, 2010

Are we wild animals? Wild in the best way, wild untrained sort of wild. My skin is trained, part of my mind is trained to socialize, but something under it giggles in the dark in secret. I don’t talk like this to people out in the daylight, I don’t talk like this. I write it. Two part of myself, two parts of my existence. They feel so separate in me, but link fingers like old friends walking down an unlit street under a heavy moon. They exist and they don’t. When I want the writing-self to come out it hides, when I want the skin-self to take over some unkempt strand sticks out at odd angles. It’s not a battle – that would mean they disliked each other – it’s more like an atmosphere, you can never predict the change.
Very few people exist in both parts. But there are a few. And even then they don’t see all of me all the time and I wonder why that is. Why my voice is different in sound and in the waves of my brain? I hope someday to be able to converge the two. One eye brown the other hazel. I hope to see the greener left burn brighter. Or should I even try at all?

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Sophia

I woke up at 4am crying, sleeping in the dining room under a shadowed chandelier named Sophia. She’s white a flowery and beautiful and is what I would look like if I were a chandelier. I was freezing. It’s like gangrene – one part of me gets infected and I’m done for – the tip of a toe, the hair on a hand – my whole body cold. I’m shivering. There was full moon light through the window only I wished I could turn her out. I saw her earlier on fire. She was smoking and I could smell her down to the ground. Hazy in her film in clouds. She wasn’t red or flaming, but about to burst her cocoon and bloom into the sun.
How will you bloom if you stay still, a soul of a friend says to me. Of course she is right. Souls mostly are. And of course I’ll keep moving, only what scares me most is wiggling out of an old skin, what the new one may look like when the transformation is complete. But I turned over, held on to love and felt instantly warm. And that’s where I am. Thinking about a time with my mom at Dillon’s Beach and her reassurance that even in my quiet times, my shy times, even in times when others may not understand my distance in such a loud world – I’m OK because it’s who I am. Even in my apartment alone where I started and saying goodbye.

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This morning a black truck sparked its engine in front of me, a bark from a black dog, but i stared him down like you’re supposed to. That’s how you cross the streets in Italy, too, that’s what I learned there – never look away.
But I imagined him running me over. Not to mortally wound me, but maybe to break a leg, some ribs, maybe crack my head. I have odd thoughts of falling down the stairs at my apartment, my body turned in obtuse directions like a puzzle piece. I see it happening. If I slip this time maybe I won’t have to do all the things I don’t want to do. How suddenly my pockets have been filled with heavy pebbles and I hear them clinking when I walk. Life is good when the things you love to do outweigh the things you don’t.

I slept on couch cushions on the floor last night and I fell through the cracks. My cat cuddled me between my legs because she is small. My desk is gone and so is my chair. The bed has only the metal ribbed frame. The clutter is lined up in the cracks. My sweet-pea plant has finally died and I knew it would. I’ve been gone too long to take care of her. I don’t have the heart to tell her I’ve failed and I look away from the green sprouts drooping their heads.

I’m writing on the floor with the dust and balls of cat hair. They have been unearthed like worms and wriggle across the floor with the fan. I’m writing on the floor with my coffee on a box above me. I’m writing on the floor because even in such a sparse space I’ll always love this. I’ll always find color, a room with a window, a cozy chair or a hammock or whatever I want to rest in that morning. I’ll always find it here.

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OBX

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I don’t remember any of my dreams last night. I’ve been waking up the past few days without my colorful, crazy dreams and I miss them. My mind wasn’t free to wander yesterday. it was moving heavy furniture down narrow steps. dark wood, white wood, plastic wood pressed against my neck and fingers and I became a barnacle trying to hang on to the underside of a ship. I became attached to something I didn’t have much control over – only guide.

All I remember of my dream was that I was going somewhere – not happy or sad about it, just going.
I know right now I’m at a place soon to be the middle. I’m almost putting my foot into new waters. almost. I have things in two worlds. I’m in a white zone.

There’s nothing you can do when you see such a great change in front of you – it’s like a wave coming, you’re standing in the ocean and you see it made, you see the curl coming and the white foam frothing at its mouth and all of the sudden it’s built itself into a wall, a moving, fast wall and it’s going to hit, maybe twist you. you can either dive in to the unknown or turn your back and leave it to chance, maybe it will pull you under its tongue, drag you along the sandpaper bottom, maybe it won’t have enough strength to do anything but wash your backside.
But i’ve had more luck diving into the meat of the wave, the stomach of the wave. Extend your body straight as a pencil and jump through the force of it. there’s less friction, fewer ways your arms will get tangled in the mess if you tuck them together. Less collateral damage.
So breathe out hard when it hits (no one likes water in their nose).

And suddenly I remember my dream about pushing through a restricted square guarded with identical Vietnamese school girls with machine guns. but don’t worry they never used them, the guns still had the plastic wrap on them. That’s how I knew they were chickens. The mob is always stronger. Test the bravery of your enemies and know your own. Push through the square and watch as the school girls crumble under the force of many.
Later I found a flat fish with legs in a friend’s apartment. It was walking around brown and speckled. No one knew what it is, how it got there, but we were all so fascinated by discovering something new that all our efforts, thoughts, worries had already become the past and it was too late to do anything but look to the present, look into the future. This flat fish is made for walking.

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What happens to us? the wonder? the fruit of our labor-ous (less) loves? the brown skin? seeping past the bruise itself but to more. muscle. bone – ivory no more but darkening. press a button. press it down. yellow seeps in too around the rim. a dying star of skin. am I a dying star? are you dying too? my skin sloughing off. I’ll never get my cells back. dust it’s all dust in corner cracks. the house moved and empty. corner cracks are always forgotten. I love you. I love this. I love. more than I can. I love foundations and falling off of them. I love my nerves exposed like bright red anemones in an ocean sky. I love it and it makes me sick. I’m sorry I feel more than I control. my eyes blue with wild. the turning I am under a moon. or the kiss of a bee. it’s such a beautiful bee and for one moment I’m a thin vein on a white wing. and nothing more.

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I’m a bit squirrely today running across the street, stopping in front of oncoming traffic, changing my mind and running back the way I came. My skin feels different, maybe because it’s tanner or maybe because I’m normally very white and pale. Am I standing out more now or then? White or Tan? I suppose it depends on what color is behind you or on you.

But my heart feels strange standing in its skivvies. Sometimes I want to pull my head back in my shell, turn on some Christmas lights (apparently I’ve been thinking a lot about these in July) along the ceiling and pretend, in all the darkness around me, that I’m looking at the night sky and the stars and it’s just me clicking my fingers together in creativity, making things with sticks and ribbon.

I’ve been thinking about balance. How balance is not so much standing in one spot in between it all, but waving back and forth like reeds on a pond shore. You go where wind goes and you pop back up. you go where wind goes and you pop back up. I’m trying to balance, pull back when I feel I’ve given too much of myself or push open when I feel I haven’t given enough. It’s not something i have to do, it’s just something I do. Today my center is on the left side, tomorrow it may be on my feet or my head or my pinkie finger.

I’m OK with feeling squirrely today. Tomorrow I will feel something else entirely.

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