Saturday, November 22, 2014

quotes and songs and careening creatures

It's like this:  I have to turn off the voice in my head that you might choose to call my "inner goddess".  When I met John, I'd gotten so frustrated with my idiotic behavior in regards to men that I decided I needed to just let the whole dating thing go for a while.  He was just so different than anyone I'd ever dated that, when he showed up a week later, it just made sense to go with the flow.

I assume like most people, all I ever wanted was to find a good relationship.  I wanted love.  A friend in high school dubbed my song "Somebody to Love" by Jefferson Airplane.  For whatever reason(s), I seemed to always be the one guys, uh, well, lusted after...but never the one that anyone really fell for...I was not commitment material, I guess you could say.  And I hated that.  And I played into it far more than I like to admit.

When it became apparent that I was going to lose John, something inside me broke.  It's like there was this small creature, living finally sated inside me.  When we would fight, I'd take a moment to check around inside myself, inside my heart.  And the creature was still sated.  My love for him never faltered.  It was the most amazing feeling I have ever had the blessing to experience.  But when the Grade IV diagnosis came back, that little creature went bat shit insane and broke every tether that could or had held it.  It screamed and cried and threw things.  It banged against every part of my heart and soul and mind.  It sent things flying, broke things, and would just not shut up.  And that hurt so badly.  And it was scary.  And this part of me, this "inner goddess" part panicked fiercely.  She wanted it back the way that it was...she wanted the beast sated again.  So too soon, I thought about a physical comfort.  I wanted touch, tenderness, kisses...I thought of the movie High Fidelity when Robin Wright's character finds out her father dies.  She goes to the funeral with John Cusak's character, who had been trying to get back together with her after she left him.  They have this conversation: 

Laura: Listen, Rob, would you have sex with me? Because I want to feel something else... It's either that, or I go home and put my hand in the fire. Unless you want to stub cigarettes out on my arm.
Rob: No. I only have a few left, I've been saving them for later.
Laura: Right. It'll have to be sex, then.
Rob: Right. Right.

 All I wanted was to feel. Something. Else.  But that's not quite right, because that creature was careening around inside me, screaming to have its peace back, John back, love back.  And that was not something I could offer.  So I reached around for a hundred different things to try and help me, like a blindfolded kid trying to pin the tail on a donkey that didn't exist inside a shop full of hand blown glass figurines, flailing hands just crashing around and breaking everything, hands getting cut, feeling confused, knowing there should be a way to connect and succeed, but not knowing how or why it was turning out to be so damned hard.

Today is the 18 month mark.  Last night, I lost my mind for a little while.  I was using the passion and support of someone from my past to try and quiet my crazy creature.  It worked amazingly well in moments.  But the moments have been getting fewer and fewer.  And then I asked for something small, something loving, something that crossed the line.  And the fact that it crossed the line was like a knife in the kidneys.  It was a sucker punch.  But it was sort of like a Fight Club version, because I basically did it to myself.  I knew I was asking for too much.  I did it anyway.

So now, I have to face the fact that I am terrified to be alone.  I don't want to raise three kids by myself.  I also remember seeing an ad for one of the Nanny shows I used to like to watch.  I saw it when John was about half way through the fight with cancer.  The mother was sitting there crying while the kids went bonkers.  She was telling the nanny that she never signed up for this, raising three kids alone...her husband had died.  She was not handling it well, not at all.  I stopped watching that show then.  But I kept her in my mind and vowed to not let my kids get out of control like that.  But I have to admit, I feel a lot like her.  And I have no clue what to do about this.

I am imagining I need to let the fear of being alone wash over me and run down the drain.  I need to accept the panic that comes when I think of how I work in a field where there are rarely any single men to interact with.  I need to face the fact that online dating may just not be the right thing for me.  I need to breathe deep, love my kids, and just let myself be lonely and scared and angry and lost.  Because I am those things no matter who I try to reach out to, no matter what I say.

When the truth is
To be lies
And all the joy
Within you dies


When the garden flowers
Baby, are dead, yes
And your mind, your mind
Is so full of red
 Tears are running
They're all running down your dress...
Don't you want somebody to love?
Yes, in fact.  I would.  And I have no control over that.  And perhaps I just need to accept that, too.  Accept that I want it, can't control it, and let those things was over me, too.  It sounds so easy.  The screaming creature inside me tells a different story.

"I must get my soul back from you; I am killing my flesh without it."  
--Sylvia Plath

Friday, November 21, 2014


sometimes things boil
and there are spatters
that make you scream

sometimes the heat
simply simmers
and your jaw seems
to never

your face floats before me
and muscles tighten freeze fire up

awards for internal
fear and loneliness
are not on any list

if my fingers could feel it right
I'd shoot sparks from them

If my words could feel it right
you'd cringe

if my heart could feel it right
I'd never have walked that way

I miss the idea
that something as strong
as a bear
could guard me
I have no guards

I feel my face react
and freeze in its frame
nose-breathing through moments
of lonely lost confusion

and it makes it hard to breathe, that 

can you feel it?
the fire?
I want you to feel it, too...
I want a weapon
I want repreive
I want
too many things
that are not there

is a long, hot, deep pressure

perhaps it's not a high school hallway
with headphones on and a classic song

perhaps I am finally
rock like.

Sunday, November 16, 2014

the places it will warm

peppered with wasted
worn and withered things
that once lived
and burned so brightly the eyes
wore halos

as the fire eviscerates
in order to reincarnate
and ashes, corpses, wilted wishes
become fertilizer
essential for new life
sprouts and sprigs
squeezing through the gray crumbled

so there will never be
a part of me
by everything you are...

each step taken
grinds in the disintegrated
unabated touch
sends it deep into the living soil veins
so that where there seems to be
seeds stream their roots
deep below the line
of site sending
a different kind of

there is passion here yet
a spark that fights for
furious fire, full and
in the places it will warm

a giant forest fire
a viscous lava flow
leaving behind
lush lands
potassium rich swirls
of iron
adding life to lifeless things
like the fire of hands
on skin on lips
on hips and the heat
of ursine
desire invisible
leaving a misty shadow beside
the one
alone so that
in silhouette
at least
there are still

Thursday, November 13, 2014

unclear understanding...vague shadow pictures

the shadows
of my prayer flags
fumble large against the
white picket fence
across the street

my babies rest soft
one hand upon another's head
while I stand guard amongst the cats

our home is made
by the momentary mention
of temporary need.

Is "need" in the moment
made large
by the manifestation
of multiple small people
and a dream of a world
where we never need
a sign

perhaps it is weakness?
Perhaps need?
perhaps it is a vision of strength

there is wonder in shining
moments of sparkling magic
and hope in the pretense

too much

I know who you are
watching over me
a shadow that follows me
that is with me forever
yet never touches

and illumination
makes you crumble
fall back and float
immutable moments
of lonely lack of communication

closing each opening,
sparkles falling
upon broken wings
full of cursed and crumbled love

fire light in midnight moments
spattered in mud
curled bodies cuddling
with not one
and silent, magical tuck-ins
too full of moments
you cannot
go back to.

Like when my wings
were stolen, when you died
leaving me wishing
surrounded by nothing
but soft moment
silent snowflakes

that which is severed
cannot be secured
that which has been blessed
will never be torn

Sunday, November 9, 2014

swimming potatoes, time, and peaceful protest

Sometimes, it seems the necessary lessons
come from small, seemingly inconsequential
Like playing spider solitaire

it's a game I find quite challenging
and tonight
I walked away
because dinner was ready

Baked potatoes and salad from the food bank
frozen turkey burgers
from the last shopping trip
bread, again, from the food bank

One of three finally ate
and liked!

We discussed Gandhi
peaceful protest
the energy content of potatoes
and their historical connection
to the Irish

and when I came back to my game
that seemed

I won.

Perhaps it is distance
good food
stimulating conversation
family and connection
that create understanding

of things unconnected

I still carry a conundrum:
how do I distance myself
from what I am neck deep in?

I fall back on the advice
from a cartoon fish
that has carried me through
from that day to this:


Perhaps, if I do
there will be something
like a win
in my future

Friday, November 7, 2014

short and not so sweet

It feels like someone leveled me up when I wasn't looking.  To be honest, sometimes I stare at the t.v. without seeing anything, repeating silently "I hate everything.  I hate this.  I hate it all."  I am as ashamed of that as I am of almost anything.

Shame is an odd emotion.  I understand that I am doing my best.  I know, too, that I make mistakes and poor choices.  But I want to do my best.  I know I am trying.  I don't really feel like I am failing, I just feel numb?  burnt?  worn?  Perhaps scabbed is a better word.

If your wound is scabbing over, it is usually still sore, itchy, but getting stronger. 

I just wish I had a fast forward button because all of's big...and it's damned hard.

Sunday, November 2, 2014

second and third

there was a baby
who wouldn't crawl
and when he moved
he rolled
eventually, he crawled,
but wouldn't walk.
Instead, on hands and knees
he bounced
his hair an electric crown
preventing hugs with zaps and sparks
full of giggles
with more air between knees and bed
than you would guess

His tiny forehead torn open
with a black round spring
strapped to a board for stitches
before he knew what "bored" without
video games was like
I held his head while the needle threaded him
His eyes shared only a tear or two

There were moments when I confused him
with my own limbs
feeling broken in foreign ways
when he was not close enough
to reach out and touch

the evil took his father
and I watch him grow
into a sensitive ball of effort
Effort to fix things
effort to help
effort for effort's sake
which does no good and only
twists him
into anxious balls
and teary trembling desire

This phantom we miss
he is part of everything
I will never be the same
because of him
this small person would not exist
if not for him

he didn't walk
he bounced
and not on knees

He stood and saluted
and counted out ten tricks, bouncing
focused, twisting and flipping
Then ran as fast as possible
to hit to surfaces
holding his core tight
pointing his toes

I missed it all
but helped to make it

We move and try
and bounce from one to the next
our hands often empty
our hearts with holes
but the blood in us
runs like the air through a woven
trampoline bed
whooshing and springing up
strong enough to send you to space
and leave waffle blood marks
on your chin

We are like those woven beds
whole and strong in our brokenness
full of holes and springs that can cut
but still call us
to bounce