Category Archives: Storytelling

without expectation or grace

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Law and Grace

an apprehension for reality, the death of the flower,
the collapse of hope, the crush of
wasted years, the nightmare faces,
the mad armies attacking for no reason at all
and/or
old shoes abandoned in old corners like half-forgotten
voices that once said love but did not mean
love.

see the face in the mirror? the mirror in the
wall? the wall in the house? the house in the
street?

now always the wrong voice on the telephone
and/or
the hungry mouse with beautiful eyes which now lives in
your brain.

the angry, the empty, the lonely, the
tricked.

we are all
museums of fear.

 

there are
as many killers as flies as
we dream of giant
sea turtles with strange words carved into
their hard backs
and no place for the knife to go in.

Cain was Able,
ask him.
give us this day our daily dread.

the only solace left to us is to hide
alone in the middle of night in some deserted
place.

with each morning less than zero,
humanity is a hammer to the brain,
our lives a bouquet of blood, you can watch
this fool still with his harmonica
playing elegiac tunes while
slouching toward Nirvana
without
expectation or
grace.

Poem for Nobody
~ Charles Bukowski

little scraps of wisdom

Before I dig in – happy 11th anniversary to me on WordPress!

I started this blog because I needed one that provided password protection as I worked through something in which I as working with quite a few mean, rich, white, ladies. I never thought I would migrate my very first blog over here, but I did – because of my mom… which bring us to today.

The world, it just keeps spinning, doesn’t it?!?!?!

https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Nathaniel_Dance_-_The_Pybus_family_-_Google_Art_Project.jpg Nathaniel Dance - The Pybus family
Nathaniel Dance – The Pybus family

So, for today’s installment of “my mothers reality is just not my own, but I keep learning from her in ways she might probably resent” –

My mother, with a solid gold heart posted this to her social media;

Which is true, absolutely true – with one exception. She is living in a home belonging to someone else (other than her) home and I don’t feel like this applies right now – though in any other place where she has had a piece of the pie this is absolutely true, and I mean it is absolutely true.

And so in my failing wisdom in thinking that she could acknowledge this I commented something along the lines of “if you lived in your own house, it would be”. I will admit that I was probably guilty of being too strait a shooter in this case, I thought she would get that this was true – based on her own comments to me about where she is living.

Anywho…

With in minutes I got one of her texts (I am starting to think that she refuses to call and face shit because she loves the anonymity of texting – you can be as big an asshole as you want without having to visually or audibly deal with the reactions… and  I get it – I am a coward too).

I am the blue –

 

So yeah, I’m not innocent in the exchange.  But, I loved the idea behind the social media post (which is the primary way she talks to me, she really only emails my husband – and rarely calls anyone – which I get, I hate talking on the phone too)….

**blargh**

 

Mom’s – definitely can’t live without them… but (and it is a big BUT) it is what happens after that, which the real miracle… right?

 

 “I believe that what we become depends on what our fathers teach us at odd moments, when they aren’t trying to teach us. We are formed by little scraps of wisdom.”
~ Umberto Eco, Foucault’s Pendulum

 

As though with your arms open

I scratched my cornea again. Not through any action other than just opening my eyes to greet the morning. 


Yes, that me and how I look when this happens, but with the Snapchat filter that prettifies.

This shit is fucking painful.

By the time that picture was taken I was on day 4… and one day after seeing my eye doctor.

I can’t explain how heinous this pain is. The eye feels like it’s full of sand, the light sensitivity is breathtaking (in the bad way), the pain shooting along the affected side of my face was inducing thoughts of possibly inflicting more severe pains as a form of getting relief.

People, take care of your eyes!

This is how my cancer experience has managed to linger, it’s been a new part of my life since the surgery. My doctor thinks it’s an erroneous assumption on my part, he is probably right… or maybe not.

There are things you can’t reach. But

You can reach out to them, and all day long.

The wind, the bird flying away. The idea of god.

And it can keep you busy as anything else, and happier.

I look; morning to night I am never done with looking.

Looking I mean not just standing around, but standing around

As though with your arms open.
~ Mary Oliver

the last wall of the universe

For Christmas I was given a box, made of French ivory, that held within its confines a piece of jewelry that  had belonged to my maternal grandmother, aka Zun. In some ways it is so wonderful to have something of hers that rests just above my heart. Zun was one of those magnificent grandmothers that creates such a spate of wonderful memories that there is nothing but deep gratitude she was mine.

The piece of jewelry is a gold chain that has a penguin charm on it. The penguin has emerald eyes. My Zun loved penguins, she even used to claim she must have been one in a former life.  The emeralds are a symbol of where I was born.

I was most grateful that I could add to the chain and include my miniature gold tumi. My tumi was a gift from my host family, when I returned to Ecuador, as a gift for being in their lives and like a sister to their children.

“What matters is at the end of life, when you’re about to pass into oblivion, that you’ve at least scratched ‘Kilroy was here,’ on the last wall of the universe.”
~ William Faulkner, Lion in the Garden: Interviews with William Faulkner

Oh, and here is a wonderful, though different, quote in French;

“Oh ! Les vieilleries ! Vieilles lettres, vieux vêtements, vieux objets dont on ne veut pas se débarrasser. Comme la Nature a bien compris que, tous les ans, elle doit changer de feuilles, de fleurs, de fruits et de légumes, et faire du fumier avec les souvenirs de son année ! (19 octobre 1906)”
~ Jules Renard, The Journal of Jules Renard

the most massive characters are seared with scars

If so, then I must be YUGE!!!! (to invoke a recent expression to our collective North American vocabulary).

When I got dressed this morning I put on a shirt that carries a small almost imperceptible stain on it. I  got to thinking about the situation when it happened. It seemed like a scar, a reminder so a wound. And because of that, I gently loved the little stain on my shirt.

Scars are pretty awesome, they tell a story. I like to think of them in that Japanese pottery meme a crack filled with gold.

I have scars, the physical kind on my ear lobe, my chin, my eye, my face, my forehead, my wrist, my shoulder, my knee, my foot, and then there is the one on my abdomen (like in the picture below) a bastard child of scars.

I am still reconciling that story, making it something to be proud of…  to feel some gentleness about that line across my skin… I am nowhere near there though. I look at it on occasion and my heart still feels heavy and full of pain. I am trying to get past that, I would hate to have to go through the rest of my life with so heart wrenching a reminder.  It, the scar (maybe I should name it) has found some horrible ways to remind it is there… when I move and have to bend, my panties curl up in the front and rest along the line… a uncomfortable feeling to say the least.  In the midst of a cold day, it can tighten up and feel like it has just tasted lemons… another uncomfortable feeling. In the summer, and especially here in my beloved desert, it tends to pool with sweat and I will get a sweat line on my clothes above it.

It, in reading this post as I write, seems to be like an ill-tempered child, seeking attention. I need to love it, and I am bound and determined to find a way. I should give it a name.

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“Out of suffering have emerged the strongest souls; the most massive characters are seared with scars.”
~ Kahlil Gibran

 

 

 

like certain portions of the anatomy – 302/366 (catch up)

What was the best conversation I had today in the last twenty-four hours?

I think it was with my son, about our experience listening to the audiobook; The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot.

What a magnificent audiobook, it is a fabulous story. Science made real, and personal.. the way it should be. The book made me cry, it made me laugh, smile… it was profound, and light. It was family and academic.

I recommend the audiobook to anyone. I got mine through the library.

PS – I am now only twelve days behind in these posts!

 

“Conversation, like certain portions of the anatomy, always runs more smoothly when lubricated.”
~ Marquis de Sade

 

 

settle for too little – 296/366 (catch up)

Am I settling for something?

Yes, I am settling on a relationship with my father that is based principally on his demands.  I am kind of done with that.

I have to say that the period of time where having both parents living and feeling like my relationship with both of them was dependent on something was horrible. Thankfully, it was a temporary one with my mother… but as I reflect upon this, why should I let my father get away with being the dictator of our relationship. If I have to love him under his conditions to be able to have a relationship with him, then I don’t know that I really need a relationship with him.

“The biggest human temptation is to settle for too little.”
~ Thomas Merton

the miserable plant in the lone flowerpot – 294/366 (catch up)

How many emails did I have today?

Have? I save many, mostly for boards I sit on and may need for reference. So, with that knowledge (and that  I have had my account for ever and a day. I got it back when people had to get an invite.  So, I have 66,322 emails in my account!

“We may know that the work we continue to put off doing will be bad. Worse, however, is the work we never do. A work that’s finished is at least finished. It may be poor, but it exists, like the miserable plant in the lone flowerpot of my neighbour who’s crippled. That plant is her happiness, and sometimes it’s even mine. What I write, bad as it is, may provide some hurt or sad soul a few moments of distraction from something worse. That’s enough for me, or it isn’t enough, but it serves some purpose, and so it is with all of life.”
~ Fernando Pessoa, The Book of Disquiet

crushed by someone who loved me – 269/366 (catch up)

Who did I hug today?

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No one. I rested my arms across my son’s shoulders as we got ready to head to school this morning.

While I don’t mind being touched, I am not one to go out and touch others anymore.  I do think I touch my son, much like I did this morning, quite a bit though.

 

In other news I am a month behind again. This was the post originally slated for Oct 2,  then moved about eight days further out due to my start date for this post-a-day crap. Maybe if I do two or three a day I can catch up?

“I wished I could spend the rest of my life… being slightly crushed by someone who loved me.”
~ Gail Carson Levine, Ella Enchanted