shot dead

Love, pretty things, soulfood, your body

In the eighth grade, I wrote this boy a note.
It said, “I don’t like you Brandon. Leave me alone.”

That came back to me today as I loaded the washer. I imagine now, that little boy just learning to stand in this world. Just letting the taste of love land on the tip of his tongue. Like all of us young and old no fucking idea about how to handle ourselves or to measure reciprocity when it comes to matters of the heart. Sitting there at the lunch table, breathing dreams of my adulation into the well pressed seams of my notebook paper. And there in jelly roll pen, my cold hard rejection.

Merciless.

That’s just who I am.

I learned that men turn their head and scan your body when you cross the street at the age of nine. I learned how to shut down a cat call with one side glance by the time I was ten. I learned that if you let them, boys and men will be so confused by the delicacy of your physiology, the charm of pheromones that silently radiate beyond your awareness and the safety of your smile, that they will think that they love you. And you them.

I let that boy walk me home from school. I let him drink my kool-aid. Hell I even let him think that I was his friend.

But when I don’t. I don’t. If that hurts well I’m sorry. I’m not the home for your bleeding heart. And I’m not the girl of your dreams.

Unless I am.

When I’m real sure, you’ll want to hold on. Maybe I’ll write it to you in a note. Or maybe I’ll spill my soul onto your lips. Drip respect over your collar bone. Curl amazement into your pelvis. Steadily showing you what it looks like when I love you back. Trust, you’ll know.

Alright

create, soulfood

I’m learning how to make
coffee for one.
Three cups instead of six.

How to ask for help
from people who haven’t promised
to love me.

How to look in the mirror and see promise,
instead of the steeled look of
resilience
and the hollowness of failed aspirations.

I’m learning the balance between
woman and fear
woman and trust
woman and vulnerability.

So much to learn in a world set up for twos.

It was all so beautiful

Love, pretty things, soulfood, therapy

I met this boy with a big nose, a skateboard and a heart of gold. He asked me to be his girlfriend on a swing set. We would walk to the same pizza shop every afternoon that summer and then his mother would drive us in her old Saab to the movie theater. We were those kids in the back row groping each other’s bodies with the immediacy of learning sexual touch for the first time. It felt like Christmas morning and singing the hook from your favorite song too loudly at a stoplight. Every. Single. Time.

This boy and I. We didn’t know better. The only pertinent information was that we were both mild-mannered and utterly infatuated with each other. He would come to be my first great love. The one who would ruin it for every man to come.

What do you mean, men don’t buy you gifts just because it’s Tuesday? What do you mean, men don’t write whole albums of love songs for you yearly? What do you mean you don’t want to lie in bed with me all day exploring every bend and crevice in my body? What do you mean not every disagreement can be worked out be me batting my eyes and leaning in for a kiss? What do you mean?

Our love was sweet as pie and twice as nice. I lived in unadulterated young love bliss with that boy grown man, myself slowly losing my grip on girlhood, for five years.

I hope everyone knows at least once how it feels to be adored. What it means to wake up in the morning a fleshy temple for someone else’s devotion. The space between us, six inches, or six states, oozed with the divine nectar of love. Innocence. Joy.

What do you fucking mean it’s not going to be like that?

The past eleven years have felt like one long fall from that cliff. Hitting every boulder on my way down. Bruised, bloody, and gashed. You should never hike in sandals. Bring plenty of water. Tell your friends where you’re headed. It’s dangerous out there. It requires lots of perseverance. A steadfastness in exactly who you really are or you will be shaken. To your core.
Shaken.

In a crumpled pile at the base of that mountain again. I remember this place well. The rocks that at first looked ominous now glisten in the light. The little specks of mica call me to pull them in for a closer look. The dried pine needles can be gathered in around you, they make a descent enough bed.

Even that patch of cactus can be touched if you’re careful. There it is in all of its splendor, long lost hope for a heavy spring rain instead content with sipping from the morning dew.

 

Some shit is just gonna fuck you up

silly goose

I used to think that I knew things
that I could figure things out.

I’m beginning to understand that life can’t be rushed,
that grief feels like being in the middle of a thunderstorm some days
and the dead of winter the next.
So cold you can see your own breath.

Someone said once that they thought that I hated being alone,
easy, that’s what’s wrong with you.
Maybe you’re right. Alone is the fucking worst.

I’ve started doing all of this extra stuff for my dog,
like hide treats in her dog food and taking her on midnight strolls.
I don’t even care that she naps on all of my new pillows.

That’s why you obsessive dog people are like that,
everyone want’s somebody to love.
Ohhh we just need somebody to love.

 

My Honesty Poem

Love, soulfood

I fall in love
every single day with someone or something.
They’re rarely ever good for me
I like sweet things, good nature, and sentences laced with laughter.

I have the capacity to finely dice you into bits
I’ll julienne your confidence to little shreds
if provoked.
Really provoked though.

I’m growing soft in my old age
I let more and more things float on by me.
I see everything in its core truth,
you see I simply have a finite amount of energy
I must be compelled.

I have a body
a human body
perfect always,
intuitive,
finely woven fibers of magic
that I get to exist in for now.

This is evolving, always. Aren’t we.
For my boyfriend’s honest poem that will bring you to your knees:

I want to tell you

create, Love, soulfood, therapy

Once upon a time there was a little blue eyed baby born in Kansas.

Why the universe decided that this lifetime was to be spent with you people I may never understand.

It is probably for all of the right- hard- reasons
that with time will start looking more and more like a perfectly executed ballet

bad choices and consequences on point, stippling around all of the majestic parts, waving their arms.

I sit down and have breakfast with death every single morning.
It resides in the belly of a man who likes an over easy egg and a piece of toast.
I think about legacy, leaving one, mine, and what that even means.
It feels like the only why,

but then again Walt Disney turned out to be an asshole.

And somehow she lived happily ever after.

The End.

Pivotal Conversations With Women

soulfood, therapy

I sat at her table drinking a cheap glass of wine,
The sweet hum of laughter and old times in the air.
I said, he wrote the most beautiful thing,
Women on both sides of me transfixed by poetry, declarations of love, the promise of commitment

He said, I want to marry you, there is no game, let’s have children.
I watched the long lost sensation of being desired well up in their eyes.
And it was all for me, alas a man who sees clearly.

 My best friend’s mother tempered, girl you’re not going to save him in the eleventh hour.
I swallowed that pit,
From which a sapling of love grew and twisted through my esophagus,
Peaked out of my throat,
Tickled my tongue and bloomed
Bore fruit for three years.

 1,095 nights I feel asleep knowing that I deserved this,
1,095 morning of waking up, reaching, just out of grasp.
The eleventh hour comes with a cold bed and a mounting pile of medical bills,
Overdue.

 We were in the car,
I recounted the inexplicable interactions of the past two days,
But he didn’t even want to have sex with me.
All of these months,
So much tension,
And nothing.

 He called it getting to know you,
Not jumping in,
Being a gentleman.

 

My eyes shellacked rose, maybe this is just different?
Like a good different? Maybe? Please?
The red haired M.D. from the back seat reported a cold hard
Best case scenario someone lives for five years after starting dialysis.
Wow, what a fucking buzz kill.

 

But we were there to celebrate,
And I love a good party.
I rallied. Plastered smiles over my crumbling infrastructure.

 

This reality was best left on the back burner,
Simmering on low for as long as it lasts,
Turn the fire down, pray that the gas doesn’t go out.

 

This woman- this woman, she has great friends,
Friends that withstood the fire, simmer and boil,
Steadfast, a hand placed at the bottom of my spine,
Keep me upright,
Hold me together.

 

I called my soul’s fraternal twin,
A customary, Hi how are you, to be polite and then straight into,
There are no wrong decisions.
You can’t make a wrong choice. What makes sense today may not make sense tomorrow.
And vise-a-versa.

 

She clutters my inbox on every front,
Filled with musings, tangible love, firm advise and big questions.
The woman is a push when I’ve slowed down,
A corset of words lacing me together when my insides have fallen to the floor.

And one day it all clicked.

 “In closing can we both- men and women- stop acting like the bare minimum,
being alive, not being fugly and not being abusive equates a good man.”

 The next day, I sat in a restaurant, lap full of babies,
Over a bowl of soup a waitress named Jessica or Jenny maybe,
She said, I have two boys 3 and 6 and a boyfriend who’s basically a child.
I’m leaving here to go to my third job, thanks I’ll take your check.

And I just couldn’t fucking do it anymore.

 I said, I see you hustling.
I said, I see you.

And I saw me.

 The eleventh hour is a cold bed,
Backseat commentary,
A well placed testimony of your strength,
A timely Instagram caption,
A woman refilling my breadbasket that I’ll probably never see again.

The eleventh hour is an internal hell,
Guilt and self-worth in the balance.
And I’m not going to save him,
I’m going to save me.

You’re Rubber I’m Glue

domestication, soulfood, therapy

I’m a jacket with Velcro closures, stuffed into an over packed front load washer. A detergent of Do The Right Thing carefully measured, poured atop. Fabric softener skipped, we’re cutting back on household expenses.

This damn washer screams a piercing beeeeeeeeep, at the end of every cycle. Okay, okay, I hear you.

Pulled out, heaved in to the dryer above. Stuck to me- the sock, the scarf, all of the soft things. The tear of fibers enmeshed akin to nails on a chalk board.  Torn apart, heaved and hung. I’ll dry out. I’ll keep you warm then.

And you’ll breath in the soothing scent of the freshly laundered made even sweeter, because you didn’t do the washing.

________________________

Today I was reminded that the spoken and written word are always open to interpretation. Try not to be too attached to them. Let them from your fingers and lips freely. Hush your ego when it want’s to jump to their defense. Those words are no longer yours, they live outside of you. Just observe.

 

 

 

Visiting Home

Love, soulfood

Every year because I’m nostalgic as shit, I sit down and write a birthday post. I reminisce about such and such and how it made me feel so and so. We all leave wide eyed, mouthing-over share much God damn. This year you got a taste of that, okay I huge whiff, but it wasn’t really reflective as much as it was let’s all cry for Reagon and her poor little crushed dreams. Sorry ‘bouts that, some days that’s the best I can do.

 

Last night after two cocktails (because I am astoundingly sober and legitimately have a ½ a drink limit) I was scrubbing away at my house as I often do reflecting on my adulthood. Trying to wrap my head around the fact that I’m t-w-e-n-t-y n-i-n-e. I know I know, just a baby. Which I’m sure will feel more true in another ten years. At the moment it feels like I’ve lived 1,000 life-times in the last ten years.

 

I’m not here to attest, another year wiser. Because though it’s cumulative, every year has been different. Each a new lesson. All cataloging themselves in my mental rolodex of this shit feels familiar. Let’s look at that a little closer shall we.

 

19- Grief and despair shape shift from week to week, weak to weaker.

 

20- Ignorance and determination are bed maidens, and sometimes they’re all you’ve got.

 

21- Love will fill craters of inconceivable depth. Hopeful innocence painted the most tender year of my life – Ever.

 

22- You are your mother’s daughter. Can’t and slow down quiver in your presence.

 

23- Ignorance is not bliss, girl. You keep your eyes wide open and steel your heart.

 

24- Loneliness is the most foreign, carcinogenic lump in a rejected throat. And still you will swallow.

 

25- Well I’ll be damned you are fucking physically beautiful. That’s yours. From you, for you. Guard that with your life.

 

26- Run. Explore. Quit. Just go. Eternal love holds your hand when you cross the street of change. You’re still strong and beautiful, that’s enough.

 

27- And you’ll be wrong, like you’ve been before. And you’ll be right, like you’ve been before. What you’re not great at is caution. And I don’t know that I want you to be.

 

28- Why hello love, my old friend. Intricately woven, the fibers sang family, finally. It was all I’ve ever wanted. I pulled that blanket up to my eyeballs and lay in that bed all year.

 

29- You are just a girl. A woman most days. You are not in control, but you wont stop grasping for stability. Balance there is hard. Love, sadness, power, grief, joy and there you are stuck to the side of the drain like a wad of fallen hair. It’s all swirling around you, hurling down the drain. Hey Mom look! It’s a tiny tornado.

 

I love a real storm, when everything falls silent, the sky turns purple, the flatness of distant rain hits your nose. It still finds me in the desert, I inhale deep and let out a thrilled- it feels like home. Watching, hell chasing tornados, is what you know. But don’t you forget that you are just a girl, and it’s undiscerning, vicious, lethal.

 

Twenty-nine, man, and only twenty-seven days in. I don’t know if I should sound the alarm, hide in my bathtub with a mattress pulled over my head or drag a chair out to the front lawn open a beer and take in the show.

 

“Jesus Christ, look, the crazy neighbor is out on the lawn again”.
Heard.

Here We Go

Love, soulfood

Carry me, please, anyone. I asked nicely.
Oh no- girl you will not be carried.
Not in this life.

The hand will mold you
It will hold-back
barley lingering in the background
it’s not here to catch you,
it’s the nudging type.

You will not rest,
Breathe sure,
In fact do more of that.
Life right now isn’t about cradle or respite
You’re in between.

This is the part where you show up,
You push,
You make everything beautiful and well.
You’re good at that.

Go.