she, who packages her face and body and eye gaze neatly within the
confines of self
there, nothing and nobody can penetrate her
in her ultimate safety
wary, her downward gaze tells me, of getting attached again;
unsure of the longevity of it all
she doesn’t like loud voices
Pain is constant, yet each episode temporary
(I tell her)
Soon enough she will understand…
that each episode of her life is a finely crafted square of her
delicately stitched together to
If she is at all like me, the toughest of pains will grow the largest and most beautiful of forces within her.
If she is at all like me, she will don her blinders of self-preservation until she is able to inhale fully, expand her diaphragm to capacity, and exhale with strength and resolve.
If she is at all like me, she will stumble and fall and roll and crawl as she aims for grace.
If she is at all like me…she will never give up.
Rays of sunshine are angling their presence through fronds of palm and dancing on my cheeks. Warmed. I don’t enjoy when the dance becomes too intense though. The heat turns my focus to feelings of discomfort and away from the real thoughts prattling around in my head – the ones that aren’t even truly known to me until, somehow, they make their way onto the pages I write to find me.
I think that words and paper became my solace around twelve or thirteen. Maybe even earlier but I have no physical proof of my heart smeared into journals prior to that age. That was back when we were all sleeping on waterbeds and rollerskating under disco balls and we didn’t know that we should have been sleeping on Posturepedic mattresses all along to prepare us for the aches and pains that show up and linger as we age.
I was a professional wallflower in my younger days. I always assumed it was just a personality deficiency that had been gifted to me… or perhaps a symptom of undiagnosed Asperger’s… but I am typically most comfortable when I am alone inside my head. Writing my truth has always been easier than actually speaking it.
I feel the warmth of your kind heart and tender soul enveloping me. There must be a goldfinch nearby. Either that, or you have woven yourself into these rays of sun shining down on me. It would be like you to do that in spirit – (you never were one to exhibit force or neediness) – peacefully inserting yourself into my words as they assume the persona of your sloppy-bordering-on-unreadable scroll. You chose this perfectly reflective moment in which to rest your hand with the light touch on my shoulder, adorning me with that familiar pat-pat of yours.
I think you’re telling me it’s all OK. You were always good at that.
vanilla nut warmth and contemplation
tentacles searching to answer me
that which is my contemplation
lost in the words of great writers the
contemplative state of mind begs answers
that elude and allow me to think upon
the very act of thinking
i am my sea and ocean
my waves of knowing and
unknowing wash me in thought
and leave me there
to wonder upon my wonderings
and enjoy the existence
of being in thought
space of alone is beauty
given from within
a gift i offer and see, only when
i allow the aloneness
of my contemplation
to lose me in myself
and the words of
I did not…I wasn’t even fucking close to…getting this one right away, this 50-thing…just as I did not get 40…or 30, or likely any decade before the afore mentioned decades. I had great aspirations and goals for the turning of each; only to find that where I found myself at the changing-of-the-calendar-guard was not, in fact, remotely even hopefully close to where I actually wanted to be.
I would say, looking back behind myself, that each monumental decade-turning number held some force over me – perhaps as a reminder that I had lost the authenticity of myself somewhere between the non-zero years. Lost I was, only later to realize, with each decade, that I had been screaming out to a self – for some painfully and mistake-making period of time – who could not hear me.
Each new decade in my life has gifted me with a massive life blowout; an ending or beginning of sorts. With each, I returned to the warrior within. Through each, I surfaced stronger on the other side whilst collecting the pieces and particles of self and soul again; combining them back into the woman they best knew how to be.
She writes her words and even still is amazed by the patterns threatening to define her existence. She thinks that she probably starts slipping away from her core so slowly that she does not notice until she can no longer tolerate the place in which she finds herself; the impending blowup the necessary catharsis for her to take steps to re-re-re-re-(this is getting really old)-define herself.
Is it only the writer who is plagued with these thoughts over and over again until they must explode onto paper to help her understand her existence? Where does all the endless pondering go if not given an outlet? Surely it would take you down swiftly, without remorse, and with so much baggage that you may find yourself, at some point, unable to utter even one more spoken word. Or breath.
I know you non-writing ponderers have some of the most poignant thoughts never shared. Your real and raw is to be admired, and I’ll tell you why. What you hold so deeply is sacred. You know your thoughts are brilliant and that alone scares you. I get it; trust me, I do. But whaddya you say you just throw out a proverbial bone and see what happens?
twenty car rides
four dog tags
bracelets, all colors
too many to name
five boys loved by two of my girls
three photos pro style and pro money
six outfits well planned
one birthday of 13
colorful macaroons aplenty
nerves, glowing cheeks, near fainting
long lines and lite rain
orange plaid pants
and a very long scrabble game
I dream of you often lately. I have a strong sense that I am coming to understand you better. At least it feels that way in my head. I’m answering some of my own questions now as well –- viewing life through older and more mature lenses, it’s easier to see the human experience as a collective whole and embrace compassion without needing to understand. But anyway…in these dreams…I think I remember more than was ever present in my conscious. Or, maybe it is not memory at all; but desire. I’m not sure I will ever know, and I don’t even think that matters. It’s not really the knowing that burns in me; it’s more the desiring of a memory I can smile upon.
I carry a piece of you inside me now. I think it’s still rattling around in my head trying to figure out just how and where to perfectly perch itself upon my being. You always thought about things like that. But right this moment I am thinking tattoo. Which is the least likely way in which you would choose to be represented, but since this is my story, I guess I’ll do the choosing. And also, I think you’d get a good chuckle out of it after you blew your steam…just like you did with that Ketchup Incident; that time that ketchup somehow got splayed across the periwinkle-ish-like, felt-ish-like cloth that was the interior ceiling (do you call it a ceiling in a car?) of that oddly large and strangely colored car that you drove around for a while. I wonder if you remember that one? That sedan, particularly, was really quite different than any of the other cars I remember you driving around in. Maybe that was a hand-me-down from Grandpa John after he realized he had surpassed his sensible driving years. Or something like that.
Anyway, the Ketchup Incident was one of those times when your wishing-to-be-quicker-than-your-target arm flew back from the driver’s seat to the rear in a visually un-aided search for a leg to grab on to and squeeze as hard as you could. I don’t mean to rub this part in, but you couldn’t catch one that time. And you were not happy. And then I’m pretty sure you laughed after your cheeks were no longer splotched in that red that I now know is indicative of your How-SWEDE-It-Is heritage (and mine too). And my leg did not get squeezed before or after your red face splotches came and went.
I don’t remember how long you had that car with the ketchup on the interior of nebulous color. Probably or maybe not long enough for my leg to ever have been caught or squeezed, and definitely not long enough for me to have ever been the driver…especially not for me to have been the driver when ol’ periwinkle insides could have been packed with teenagers doing questionable things and not what they told people they were doing. And not maybe going to the places they perhaps said they would surely be. And definitely not ever sometimes driving over the state line. Not in that sedan (if that’s what it was called). However; I’m not saying I did those questionable things at all, ever. And even if someone stood up and swore on their talisman that I did…I know for sure it was not in the Ketchup Incident car. You didn’t have that car very long. At least not how I remember it.
Albeit late. Hanging desperately on the precipice of 51 and feeling like I don’t know any more or better than I did at 21. They say time makes you older and wiser, but presently, and for a while, if I’m being truly honest…I only feel older. The wiseness does not come like they tell you it will…you have to really work to earn it. And work you will. And even then it is still quite surreal, like you might feel it at one moment but it surely does not last, sometimes not even long enough for you to figure out if it was real or completely within the confines of your own delusional mind.
So what am I saying exactly? Quite possibly, I’m not at all sure. I only know that I want to continue exploring that which I don’t get or understand on an intrinsic level, so that I may, most hopefully, grow some sort of brain mass that helps it all make sense in my head. And maybe the sense-making in my head will guide you to be able to make some sort of sense in yours, and we will each surface on the other side of self-imposed impossibility, just a bit more enlightened.