September 30, 2009

1. i show up at stages
2. i tune and sound check
3. i play my songs

my admittedly depressing songs.
this is what i love.
this is what i have.
this is what i am.
and i'm always grateful 
that no matter how hard those three things get
because i'm lazy
because i'm tired 
because i'm broke 
because i'm busy
or heartbroken
or on the rag
or hungry
or sad
or bitter
or undressed
or sick
i still want to..

1. show up
2. tune up 
3. sing

September 29, 2009

it's a low sky today
and children are dragging 
in the possibilities

September 23, 2009

The doors
i still speak our language.  mostly to the dog.  mispronouncing words the way we always did, kill becoming kile.. a sound effect before peeing.. all sorts of subtle and odd changes to an otherwise mundane english language.  we made it our own.  we made everything our own.  i have tried this language out on friends but they miss the changes or they are only hearing every seventh word or they have to hang up because they're getting another call.  but like i said i speak it mostly to the dog.  her ears twitch at my every word.  sometimes i say your name to her and she looks hopefully at the door.  i do that for myself and i know it is so selfish but for three easy seconds she believes that you are coming through that door and for those three seconds i believe too and i feel light and safe knowing that you are coming home.  then we are distracted by september 23 2009..  a neighbor walking their own dog, a leaf blower, a shout from the tennis courts..  and we are back in the moment.  

i am not the same person now.  and i don't know where the girl i was went.  the girl who changed the dressings on your wound when you broke your leg, the girl who wanted to be buried in her wedding dress, the girl who was obsessed with your profile, the girl who lay on your chest.  she's gone.  you're gone. we have become other people.  i was once yours.  now i am my own.  that sounds so strong to me as i write it but i want to write it for someone else, not me.  it makes me desperate and scared.  my own?  i can't keep a plant alive, how will i take care of myself.  but i do.  somehow i wake up every morning and find my glasses in the covers and boil water to make my instant coffee and take my medicine and wait for the grizzly back pain to dull..  i take mabel outside to pee and try to determine my mood based on the weather.  

i am the same person as much as i am not.  our language has become my language.  you are only across town.  you go home to yourself now.  as i walk hopefully through my own door.  to our dog.  who looks for you when i say your name but who is helplessly in the moment and when suddenly remembering her stuffed toy, gallops off to attack.

September 10, 2009

tonight my head is in conference with my heart.  my head is getting tired of the tricks and games that my stupid heart has been playing.  it has graphs and charts that it has layed in front of my heart but my heart isn't having any of it.. it's burning the graphs and making paper airplanes of the charts and it's up on the conference table mocking my head.  and my head is shaking.  hearts are children.  my head has seen this before.  this wild and reckless.. this pitiful and shameless thing.  this dark youth that dominates us.  it always wants more. it's a sad little savage, this greedy heart of mine.  so my head takes it by the hand and puts it to bed early.  lets it cry itself to sleep again.  because that's what hearts need to do to survive.

September 8, 2009

early signs of trouble...
in the afternoons of the first home i remember, my mom would take naps. the house would quiet to a stand still and shades would be pulled and all the air would be sucked out of the little apartment in a sort of dark grey haze.  i would lie restless and waiting next to my mom on the king size bed as she rested like the dead.  for a thousand years i watched the ceiling, finding animal shapes from water stains..  water stains like clouds.  they seemed to form and reform.  one of those afternoons i just couldn't take it anymore.  i threw my four year old frame over the side of the bed, careful not to wake my mother and slid on my bottom down the carpeted stairs.  the kitchen was warm from something my mother was slow cooking for dinner.  i wandered the two shaded downstairs rooms and then did the only thing i could think of.  i pulled a chair across the linoleum to the stove and hauled my tiny body up onto it.  then i put both hands, flat and palm down, right on the stove top.  one on each burner.  

i wore socks slathered with vaseline on each of my hands for a week, my injured paws some kind of young badge of courage. 

i am always hurting myself to see what happens.

September 7, 2009

sometimes i think that i might have used up all my strength as a child.  this grown up that i am doesn't feel as strong as she once did.  it's as if my skin has been removed and i walk around in my broken bones.  i rattle like an old man.  i carry my heart outside of me like a purse.  filled with lost things. i bend and creak like a door. the chill in me.. a ghost passing through a sunny room.  

i saved my vulnerability up like nickels to spend later.  and now i cry too easy.  a small connection with a stranger.. a god bless you after a sneeze.. a door held open..  two parents holding the hands of a child between them..  and it starts, that one never ending tear that pours in slow motion out of the corner of my left eye.  a strange tear that makes a beeline down my face and falls like a thin river onto my collarbone.  a collarbone once broken as a three year old.  

i remember falling off the see saw and quickly pretending nothing was wrong, not wanting to worry my parents. already in me was the fear of being a burden, of being pitied. or weak. it wasn't discovered to be broken until, weeks later, at my monthly chemo treatments the doctor noticed that i wasn't using my arm.  an x-ray was taken and as it turns out, i had broken my collarbone!  as an adult i have made trips to the emergency room because i was "nervous."  times have changed.   

perhaps this is what happens to us as we get older.  the world begins to look very fragile and beautiful, glass.  we see through it..  the break-ability of it all.  it's scary, this lovely breakable world.

September 5, 2009

how was
ever a party girl?

...home. single. saturday. night. 41. me.
it's finally raining and the greedy trees are soaking up each thin and sparkly drop.  the grass is still dry and jealous.  it sounds so pretty in the sky.  it's like a goodbye party for the summer... thrown by clouds.

September 3, 2009

i am under a wordy spell
a feverish language
overcoming my morning.
in the short form.

September 1, 2009

Okay holy gamoly.  I just realized that the day after I posted a poem titled, Everything, my computer crashed and I lost everything!  I told the universe that I couldn't choose what to keep and what to let go of and it chose for me.  The universe is awesome.