Tuesday, December 27, 2016

I'm afraid. But I have choices

I’ll sit on my deck
I bet the warm winter air
Will blow my hair
In a way some might say
Is beautiful
I’ll eat a cookie
Meant for Santa
That I could not finish
On Christmas night
And maybe
There will be a star
To wish on
If I believed
In wishes

But I don’t
I believe in loss
Hugs.  Oh!  I believe in hugs so much
Music is an amazing thing to add to the list

When I was young
I fell in “love” with boys who barely knew my name
I sang them songs
Plunked out on simple piano notes
No chords
Just words
And tears
I wrote tear stained poetry
And lamented
Tender hearts
Left broken
On sandy shores

I’ll sit on my deck
Eating Santa’s cookie
Looking at stars 
And knowing
What it is to be alone
It’s so odd
What humans can do…

I hurt then:  I remember a babysitter’s bed
In Martha’s Vineyard
Where I learned that the “he” I thought would “be”
Had lied and “loved”
TWO others.
I thought my heart died that day
And I thrashed at the sheets and tore my hair
Till my everything was spent.
And off I went, to babysit

We live…when we choose to not end it
And when cancer and luck and heart disease
Don’t jump in our bath with a toaster
We live
And we remember the pains that painted everything
Onto our bodies
The backside of our eyelids
That changed the tempo of our hearts.

But left them

I’ll sit on my deck
My hair might blow in the breeze in a way
Someone might say
Makes me look beautiful.

I won’t feel beautiful.
I barely feel alive
But that
Is what
I am

So I promise
Thought I’m terrified to tears
I promise I’ll try
To honor that life.

I’ve known too many

Who’ve died.

Sunday, December 25, 2016

Community vs connection

Both are foundationally

for a strong way forward
ANY way forward
I’ll tell ya, this starts all poetically, but it isn’t a poem.  It’s just another tiny moment of realization.  I live in a paradox of gratitude and jealousy…joy and grief…optimism and depression

People from my past, and from the mist, push through and zap my family with light…a sparkling halo of calm and hope and comfort
And I am able to spread magic
Small, sparkling, splendid magic
And then, my little magicians,
They go to bed
I see one of my friends in my mind’s eye:  with his wife and his three kids
Annoyed at struggles, worried about vomit, with so much family and the love of his life
To put his arm around, and lay beside.
I see another friend:  so very betrayed, she spent years fighting to be the best mother ever.  Her heart is a living spark of hope…always has been…and she is no longer alone…she lays her head beside the one she found online
And another friend:  such a sweet connection, caring, yet intentionally distant. I keep reaching, accidentally, into the void where I think he stands..

There is also the one whose cancer came to her life while she was pregnant.  From a distance, she seems to have love, again. I am grateful...and, if I am to be honest, bitter...jealous

And the one whose death came on the birthing bed…a moment of talking to him, years ago, gave me moments of connection that made me pause, wonder, hope…for not long enough…and there isn’t even a friendship…but I see him in the distance, with a woman in his profile
Is part of the water cycle

we drink what once was
dinosaur pee
Disease continued a cycle that had nothing to do with him, My Love,
One where I end
But cycles are about connection
And life is about community

Remembering that it’s the tiny bits and pieces
That make the puzzle of every picture
So, in the evenings, when the moon sings softly to the vibrating stars
And the sun sings harmony on the upside down
My task
Is unending and large:
Do not become what they were
Do not give up
Do not give directions on life based on what not to do.
     Imagine:  a taxi comes to pick you up.  In the back seat you say
     “I do not want to go to D.C. I also do not want to go to Baltimore.”

I do not want to be the women that were.  I do not want to be
A “woman in waiting”
I do not want to be broken, to be lost, to be afraid, to be
I’m in the damn taxi
So I cannot choose from places of “I do not”
I accept the community that surrounds me,
From so many distances away
I crave so desperately the connections
I do not seem well enough to carve
And do my best to create a vision
Of what I
Even when I do not know what that is.

Saturday, December 17, 2016

poem with thanks to Into The Woods... (just typed, not edited...)

Things are bigger than
You think they are
And they are smaller too
What you do to me
Affects you
And like the butterfly
Wings flapping
The pluck upon the spider web strand
And tremble things into life
That otherwise would not have been
And the connections are layers
Topsoil feeding eluviation layers
And making regolith

Growth isn’t always on the surface
In the glow of the kissing sun

In the woods our lives
Are made of moments
Bad ones
Good ones
But if life were made of moments
We’d never know we had one
So they whisper in our ears
And guide our dreams

Through us they speak of respecting women
Regarding mistakes made
When we were too young to know
What our tongue could taste

And love
Love is all the things
And nothing:  connection and loneliness
Joy and guilt
Hope and hurting
Healing and destruction

Just remembering you’ve had an “and”
When you are back to
Makes it all mean more

With nothing
Being easier.

So the song singing to the moments
Is my siren…remember them.  Hear them
Heed them.  You may not believe they are connected
You do not need to.  You may not know that one pluck
Keeps a heart beating.
It just does
And thus
You continue

Moment to moment
Springing and singing from strand to strand
In the hopes that your dance
Brings life
To someone


Thursday, December 15, 2016

Cognitive Dissonance

My space heater rumbles
Like a part is loose
Everything inside me

In the first place
Every place is hollow
I promised not to say broken
So my fingers hover
Over keys and my heart argues
With my mind

I can’t write
I can’t love
I am nothing
I am everything and everyone
I can do it

And every choice screams in the echoes of our hearts
We betray
We honor
We help
We harm
How many of our foolish steps are
Steps we took to save something
That ended up
A pirouette
Into a place where our deepest insecurities
Slide and melt us
An illicit


Thursday, December 1, 2016

our last first tooth

I prefer my pets to people
It’s not that they are perfect.
My dog has destroyed my couch, ottoman, three pairs of my shoes, my daddy blanket, Cecilia’s daddy blanket, two of Neil’s shoes, 3 of Cecilia’s, my sheets, my new blanket, three pillows…
I STILL like that mother fucker better than people.
Today, my baby, our baby, lost his first tooth.  It seems like it took forever to happen!  But now that it came out, I want to shove it back in!  And revel in the awesomeness that is his growing up.  And the hollow that rings in my chest echoes and echoes and echoes.  John didn’t even get his first tooth.  There is that silent screaming thing I do, again.  I don’t make plans for things often.  I guess when I do, I do it without realizing.  I have always loved kids, but never planned on having them.  Mostly because I didn’t think I would ever find anyone I’d want to have kids with, anyone that would love me, anyone I wanted to be with.  I even threw my coins in the Trevi fountain in Rome and asked only for a husband.  Because I had to be sure.
As far as I can tell from this side of things, "sure" ain’t nothin’ but a deodorant.  And I’m here raising three kids on my own, going to bed night after night, getting up and going to work, and on and on ad infinitum…never having a best friend anymore.  Always having to create the safe space, never entering it.  Comforting and caring for.  How do we do it?  The single parents who are single forever?  How do you keep going?  I feel like a life vampire has been attached to my hip for three years, on and off, mostly on…sucking away at my life.  Count Rugen’s awful torture machine, set on low and made to be worn like a back pack…increasing the loss of life incrementally.  I see my hands and they seem to represent the slowing and drying of my heart.  The psoriasis hasn’t fully gone away and there are always spots that are peeling.  And I so often think to myself in a mumble how I don’t want to do this anymore.  The loneliness is a poison dart in my spine.  I got nothin’.  So I take a breath.  I go to sleep.  I try again tomorrow. 
And at least I have my pets.  Between them and, for now, my kids, I never totally sleep alone.