Thursday, September 30, 2010

this is happening.

I keep repeating the words, over and over, to myself: this is happening. It is my effort to stay focused on the present, to not get too caught up in the weeping tide that might consume me if I let it. They are words to remind me, too, to look up, to breathe, to close my eyes and turn my face toward the sun that is right now shining.

A little more than a year ago I cut off much of my hair. It was a symbolic gesture meant to mark my grief and what was then, I thought, the beginning of a difficult transition. I had expected the intervening year to look quite different. The particular departure I'd been expecting never materialized, but the grief it represented was quite real, and I've continued to keep my hair the same relative length during this passage of time, in part, because I was still grieving, still, actually, actively being wounded. I decided a while ago that I didn't want the relationship I was symbolically gesturing toward to be marked by grief. There has, it seems, in the last several years, been enough things, lives, relationships, moments, that have been marked by grief.

I am ready for joy.

These past few months, I have been trying to do things differently. I have been trying to let go with love. I have been trying to gain clarity, of purpose, of vision, of intent. I have been trying to be present with my wounds without actively engaging their wounding. I have been trying to live my life from a place that is more open, more loving, more dedicated than ever to what I've discovered in my own heart, not in spite of the grief, but through it, because of it. These losses have been lessons, but so too have been those moments of joy, and I have been trying not to minimize their significance.

Today, my dear friend and lover of the past four years, begins to walk a new path that no longer corresponds with mine. We each take our first steps into this next leg of our journey. I have no idea whether we will ever find our way back to each other, or what it might look like, how that might manifest, even if we do. I think the next nine months or so will involve a lot of internal reflection, a lot of digging deep. I don't know how that will feel or what I will turn up.

What I do know is this: my love has never been stronger. Even knowing that I cannot engage it in the ways I have hoped for in the past, even with the lovely RMH making his exit from the state and from this part of my life, does nothing to diminish it. I wish him more love and sweetness and success, more abundance and possibility and joy, more fiercely than I have ever before. And that's saying quite a lot, because I have always been coming from a place of love when it comes to him.

And so this day has arrived. This is what the end looks like, and the beginning. This is happening. This is really very presently happening.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

me and frankie

So, this morning I had yet another odd dream. In this one I'd somehow become slightly unstuck in time (I'm going to chalk that up to the Dr. Who episodes I've been watching recently) and had landed outside some kind of military base. It would have seemed like an outpost for a more active unit, except that there were families and children in close proximity and at least part of the facilities were dedicated to education. More interestingly (to me) was the fact that I'd also become very, very Irish.

Late one night I'd found a small girl wandering the dusty roads, slipping in and out of the shadows, trying to avoid the attention of any of the guards. She carried something small and shiny in her hands, but I wasn't able to make out quite what it was. The girl was quite obviously scared. Her thin, dirty limbs shivered beneath her tattered clothing, though it was hardly cold outside. The stars were bright. I intercepted her and brought her inside my tent. Also beside me in my tent was a handsome young Irishman, who sat with his back facing me, working his way through a book by candlelight. The girl appeared apprehensive.

I asked her, "What have they done to you?"

And she shook her head, glancing up toward my male companion, then sliding her gaze back down toward the ground.

"You don't need to be afraid of him," I told her. She looked skeptical. "I'm going out on a limb, here, but I'm going to assume that the men you are afraid of do not include this here Frankie McCourt."

At the sound of his name, Frankie looked up from his book and turned his face toward the girl. The soft light of the candle made his slight smile all the sweeter. They met eyes.

The girl shook her head again, recognizing that Frankie was not a threat. "Okay. I'll tell you," she said to me in the quietest of voices. She lifted her small hand and gestured for me to lean in close.

As my face neared hers, I could smell the sour scent of ripe child. She placed her hand around my neck and whispered in my ear. I do not remember, now, what it was she said to me, but knew only that her violation would be the last and that Frankie and I were to have a long, difficult night ahead of us.

Tuesday, September 07, 2010

hello world.

I'm feeling exceptionally stupid with happiness today. It's a nice change of pace, and something I wasn't expecting to feel any time soon. So, this is just a tender little missive to say, "Hello world. Thanks for looking out for me all this time. I know sometimes we grow distant, but in the end, you really do seem to teach me all that I need and provide me with ample opportunity for joy."

This makes me want to post this lovely poem:

My Dead Friends

I have begun,
when I'm weary and can't decide an answer to a bewildering question

to ask my dead friends for their opinion
and the answer is often immediate and clear.

Should I take the job? Move to the city? Should I try to conceive a child
in my middle age?

They stand in unison shaking their heads and smiling—whatever leads
to joy, they always answer,

to more life and less worry. I look into the vase where Billy's ashes were—
it's green in there, a green vase,

and I ask Billy if I should return the difficult phone call, and he says, yes.
Billy's already gone through the frightening door,
whatever he says I'll do.

~Marie Howe

Friday, August 13, 2010

lucky 13

I have found myself surprisingly busy lately, and very much acting like an insomniac. Despite this, I am not getting many of my chores done and my bathroom is not getting any cleaner... Isn't that what one is supposed to do with an astounding lack of sleep?

So many changes coming, so many already underway. Mostly, this is good, perhaps even necessary. Still, in some ways, I am carrying around a sadness. For all intents and purposes, I have lost one of my dearest friends, and this is both surprising and profoundly upsetting, not to mention demanding of some serious adjustment. I truly am a fool for love. And I miss my beautiful friend. I hope he finds his heart; I hope I recover mine.

In other news, "If We Are Kind" will be featured in the upcoming print issue of Dark Sky Magazine and I'm excited to see the new issue (and the print format) and will let y'all know where to get it once I have that sort of information.

Also, I kind of love that today is Friday the 13th. Lucky 13!!

Thursday, August 05, 2010


I just received my first ever solicitation for two poems for the inaugural print issue of Dark Sky Magazine-- how awesome is that?!? This means I will be one of their premier poets for the first issue (they've been online to date) and will get to go to the release party, which I'm sure will be filled with all sorts of swanky, cool, intellectual men and women of letters. I'm swirling my cocktail in anticipation, even now. Yay!

Monday, August 02, 2010


I'm realizing I have a lot of undirected angry energy that I need to, not necessarily keep in check, but redirect into things more productive. On the surface, I feel like I am not even so very angry. I am sad. I am hurting, for sure. But then, to say I have no anger also feels a little bit dishonest. Perhaps it's more that I have no present anger, but I have the lingering echoes of prior anger that did not get properly voiced or exorcised. I have spent so much energy in recent times dedicated to the art of bending, to show support, to carry another's burden... at times, to another's will, and now I am simply a little spent and need to rise back up to my full height and strength, to demonstrate with body and mind the full force and power it requires to bend and bow so deeply, to assume the posture of supplicant. I do not come to anyone ground down upon my knees. I am not unaware of my own worth. And this anger, all it is telling me is that it is high time I demand what I want and need and accept no less than what I deserve. I am more than willing to give back tenfold what I ask, and it's time I stop giving to those who think so little of my gifts.

learning be selfish enough to take care of myself properly, but not become so self absorbed that I begin to act like, well, you probably wouldn't notice if I were making a comparison to you, now would you?

Friday, July 30, 2010

baby steps

Step One:
Don't falter. When you find yourself wanting to lie in his arms, send him home.

Step Two:
Continue to speak your truth. It is no accident your worlds collided. Make the damage matter.