Monday, June 30, 2008

lavish smoke

it has been so long since i've been surprised in the good way. so long, i've nearly forgotten what it's like. and tonight, the chief came into my work and stood there smiling. he produced a box for me, a gift. a bracelet of turquoise and coral. said he was going to pray for me and smudge me, but just slid the box across the counter to me instead.

so i opened the box, and smiled.
i love it. thank you.

and we talked, about what, i don't remember, but i said,
i'll take my break so you can pray and give it to me as you wish.

and so i did. i met his wife, and we stood in the sacred smoke, he prayed and i stood silently.

words escape me at these moments, and my mind a whir with things i've not even begun to understand.

i go into tomorrow's silence blessed. rich with life and wonder.

i hope to go for a long walk and be apart. to find the crow who comes to speak with me daily at my home (but i'll be far away, so maybe i'll meet his cousin).

and the hawk who haunts my steps, haunting me still. and i will be glad of his presence. as i'm glad for the breath of my lungs. the beat of my heart. glad, that all is not lost, not yet.

and i hope to meet some new friends, of the furred and feathered sort. the uncomplicated types.

life can be so very complicated. and i try to wrap my mind around it, but find it's too much for me. and i grow weary.

to send you on your way in peace. to keep you in beauty.

he prayed this and much more. and i am grateful.
beyond words, grateful.

the great gorge

before any diet, i'm not alone in this, one must gorge on whatever it is they are quitting. for me, that's sensory input.

but of course, there is a group of poets meeting tomorrow whom i have been meaning to get to, and it is likely the only time i can meet with them for who knows, maybe ever. so do i go?

i will, if it works out. i won't if it doesn't. how's that?

i decided to work out today, listen to beowulf on tape, and do the laundry, as is my custom on mondays.

it's blazing hot today, so i'm grateful to be able to take it relatively easy.

but this diet of the mind is looming on my horizon and today, i feast. i may have to shop a bit this week, work digs. but whatever.

my girl got up early to get ready for camp, but first, she paints a picture, a watercolor of a horse. and it's gorgeous. i can't deny that. but there is so much else to do and i question her priorities many times.

i won't paint at all this week,
she says.

i'm not saying that. i'm just saying, get everything done before you paint.

having almost missed belly dancing class writing a poem about belly dancing, i can understand how captivating creating is. and both must be done. it's just a matter of priorities.

just try.

i keep trying to bat the wispy worries away. like so many flies that pester me and sometimes bite.

trying not to cloud my transition in worry, i keep reframing it all to the positive. but so many questions run through my mind,
what if they hate me?

my work ethic will win them over.

what about schedules, i have a lot coming up,
will they be as able to accomodate me as the last place?

i hope so, if not, i move again. there is nothing in stone keeping me anywhere. i can do any job, and if i find this one inflexible (that's the thing, they always want you to be flexible, and i understand that, but things come up in people's lives. and i go entire stretches, months when there is nothing on my plate except a poetry reading every month. but coming in with my long list of requests, and being untried, i see how it can look. and i hope it doesn't.)

i've thought a lot about my girl's riding, and i just need help with it. the next two riding camps after this one, if they can't accomodate me with it, i have to work it out some other way. and, i really am okay with this. how many times does she need to tack and bathe a horse? it's not like she doesn't know how, right?

so she has to leave early perhaps, at least she gets to go. three weeks of horse riding camp is a lot.

it's just this new job is farther than the last, making it about an hour from the stables, not just a half hour. and i'm trying to keep my mind clear and focused on all the good. there is so much good ahead.

a boss who actually runs the place by the book, is something.

the company i wanted to be a part of for a very long time, and now, have a chance with them.

there remains some question as to whether my school will let me take the psych of creativity class, since it overlaps my semester. i hope they will. my plan will be to do as much work in advance as possible.

so this week, i hope to do silence and deprivations in preparation for the long haul, which will begin next week if i get into the class.

it won't end until january sometime. but then, i'm done and have a semester and summer off.

i probably need to look at the mfa apps and get that figured out. there is a lot i need to do for that. i can't let up. it would be too easy to slip back into lethargy. but i need to keep moving forward while i have some momentum.

and starting this week, deprivation and silence. at least for a couple days. i haven't done them in so long, i wonder, in many ways what will happen. can i pull it off.

and trust, at least i can try. that is all that has ever been required of me, a genuine effort at something. usually, things work out pretty good.

Saturday, June 28, 2008

ow! that hurt!

so i'm sitting in that chair getting my third tat, and thinking, i shoulda taken ibuprofen before i came. halfway through, i'm wishing it were over. when it's just about done feels like my arm is on fire.

still feels that way, four ibuprofen later.

but i finally did it. got the tat the felt like it was burning its way out from my inside. three weeks bobby says, before i can go swimming.
two or three weeks.
he said,
whenever it looks like normal skin again.

i'm hoping it's closer to two because my kid and i are swimming mwf, but not next week. that's where i got the idea to get this done.

i heal quickly though, so maybe it won't be too long.

pictures to follow, my girl gave me this disapproving look when i told the fam where i was.

you're not my parent.
i told her.

like i need anyone disapproving, like i care.

i told my boss i was going to get it done,
i'll ask about what you want done,
i said.

where do you go,
she said.

i told her, turns out, we love the same tattoo artist.

i'm glad the guy i go to is so reputable. took a bit for him to get the design just how i wanted it, but ultimately, it is perfect.


peace. out.

Thursday, June 26, 2008


i keep wondering how i could possibly make this home a home for anyone if it is not a home to and for me. curious, how that works.

and it makes me sad to say that's how it is, but it is.

after a screamfest with my husband, the first we've had in a great while, i'm sitting here wondering what it means to have a home. a place of peace.

for now, this is it. and i wish it were otherwise. this is not a happy place for me. which is why i work as much as possible nights and weekends. i would simply rather not be here.

with the clock ticking down on my time at my current place, it's quite a nice feeling. that i will soon be on a new journey, a new adventure. and the word at the store is, the place is doomed when i leave. no one really knows or cares about the details of the place. and those who do have a bit of a clue and want to keep their job are woefully outnumbered by those who don't.

it's a tough spot. my encouragement to the others is, finish any training you are in the midst of, and be ready for whatever may come.

the assistant store manager said to me tonight,
everyone working there should keep their eye on the employment ads, that's for sure.

which is a sad truth. i had thought the store would absorb the employees of this joint, but that doesn't seem a high priority.

all i can do is the best i can do while i'm there.

and then, i come home to utter and complete frustration. i'd rather be working. at least i'm getting paid to put up with the bullshit.

riding camp all next week, so my girl and i will be much at the farm. we've not volunteered for extra work this time, which i'm grateful for, i've just got to take some time and rest.

before the rush and hurry of my summer class begins.

i must remind myself to rest. or attempt it anyway.

peace. out.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

warrior i

after yoga, where we held the warrior one position, which was wonderful (next time we're doing a whole series of warriors, and hey, you can't go wrong with that), i found the reservation i'd seen before but never stopped to explore.

i went for a long walk. the place is gorgeous.

i understood why nations would war over it.

there was so much spirit in the place, in the ground, in the trees. the whole place was alive. and it didn't hurt to be alone there. because i wasn't alone there.

i know i have to go back, and go back. spend much time there and write. i have been at a loss for words of late. but that is just a season.

and today, i felt safe, as if i could get lost there and be content.

we went for a swim today, my girl and i. again, after my workout. i still think i'm staminally challenged. but perhaps that will change with our regular swims.

i stayed an extra hour and basked in the sun. thinking of the great stories i have read and heard about sunlovers.

the great war twins of the pueblos were conceived by the sun's rays. that thought kept coming to me. curious though it was.

and i trust it will all be well.

peace. out.

begin again.

a new day. i'm trying to figure out what to do with it. i got a glimpse of tween mood swings last night and that's scary. i tend to be kind of moody myself, so with both of us arcing back and forth, oh my.

i had a dream where james hetfield played a major role, and it's curious, because in all the years i've loved metallica, i've never though he was the bomb. i guess his sobering up, becoming a better dad and husband, all that makes a man attractive in my eyes. it was a curious dream, and i was dancing.

i like that i get to dance a lot in dreams and such.

i'm thinking a lot about the new job, and i'm sorry the comfortable rhythm i've fallen into at my current place won't necessarily carry over to the new place. i need a few things, a saturday am shift, tuesdays and wedsnesdays off. and when i went in, i said these things in no uncertain terms. they hired me, and one of the first questions the manager asked was,
do you really need tuesday and wedsnesday off?

i told her i'll try to be flexible as i can, but i need to take some classes next semester and those are the days the classes fall on.

i've just received word on a story i edited, the author loved my work, though the story has since been reivsed. it takes me so long to get to these things. and now another piece sits on my desktop.

returning a story, a poem, a novel, riddled with my commentary and editing is always a curious endeavor. i love to do it, i know there are some things, some misdirections, however minor, that need to be addressed, and that is the gift i possess. the ability to redirect those misdirections.

even here, in all these words, sometimes they are not clear. sometimes they could be changed somehow. and had i an editor (and actually listened, or cared), i would benefit from that objective eye. every writer does.

even the established ones. it's the nature of the process. needing other eyes to ingest what you write.

and now my mind jumps back to my new schedule, my new boss said,
i have someone who closes on monday and weds. i need someone on tues.

and i'm thinking, why didn't we discuss this earlier? i can be flexible about it until my class starts in september and ends in jan, but i need to take a tuesday night class. for my own sanity. the thought of doing my belly dance and recording it without the kind eye of my instructor is just not something i want to consider.

perhaps there will be some change, something will happen, my transfer to ramsey (closer to home) will come through.

i'm pressing myself at my current place to do things by the book again. we have some ways of doing things that are not kosher, and i'm trying to remind myself these are the bad habits of this place. and to take the time to stop and go back to basics.

when you're trained with shortcuts, it's hard to unlearn them.

and the level i fill my cups to, sometimes i try to get it all in the cup when it simply won't fit. i have to watch that.

there is much to do today, and i must away to put my hand to it.

peace. out.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

the big bandito

so i get to the farm and everyone is glad to be allowed to stick their head in the aisle, even bandit, the big baby who hates to be groomed let me, after i had been there some time, use a comb on the length of his neck. i read somewhere this is where they groom each other.

he stretched his neck out really far and just stayed really still while i worked the comb up and down. he stayed there a long time, until i finished. and i thought, since he enjoyed that so much, i should get the curry and hard brush and try to make them a positive experience rather than a freak out experience.

so he's all relaxed and letting me do more grooming than i ever have to him (i've groomed him, but it was quickly and i was nervous. maybe that was the problem).

so, i break out the massage curry, and he lets me use it on his neck and chest. i move in small even circles, and he seems to enjoy it. then i switch to the other side of him, and he stays, and lets me.

when i go for the hard brush, he doesn't really want me to use it on him, but i let him smell it and watch it for awhile. and finally, he let me get close to him with it (i was close, but i'd rather stand palms turned upright, until he relaxes and lets me do whatever it is i am trying to do.

hard brushing done, i stayed there and stroked his chest and shoulders. when nicole walked in.

i told her how he'd let me groom him a bit.

she seemed pleased. we then flymasked the horses and led them out to the paddock, while my girl took barnaby to the outdoor arena.

i didn't feel much like being indoors, so i went to see bucky and prince. they were gracious. i en oyed them but didn't stay long because i was right out in the open field with them and didn't want godzilla getting her knickers in a knot.

but by the time we ran into her, we were on our way to the wash stall, ready to bathe barnaby. these horses are very well treated, nicole's that is.

which makes me want to do so much for bucky, but i can't. it's not my place. and so i leave him all mudcaked and flypestered, though i did give him a kiss. it's the least i can do. his soft grey muzzle in my face for a moment.

and the hawk, pestered in the sky by a small blackbird circled farther and farther away and i wished him closer and closer. and once, while i was walking the paddock, looking for what should not be there, he came a few hundred feet away. pestered still.

and now to rest. i'm very tired.
and the days they pass too fast.
the nights, without rest.

soon, i'll be in school again and must be ready for it.


don't wake me.

i hate to be waken up more than my girl. so to find her hovering over my head this morning, did not make me happy. she was there to ask me if she could play toontown on the computer in the form of,
when does my summer start.
really now. do you risk mom's wrath for a computer game? apparently.

and so, i told her,
summer never begins.
smiled, then said,
go ahead, play.
off she goes, swearing to let me sleep longer. after she informs me, dad dropped something on me last night, and i didn't even stir. i was wasted tired.

shirt turned inside out, i had a long drawn out dream about velvet. a black mare. my girl and i brought her home, fashioned a paddock in the yard, and put her in there. the next morning we went to her and she was gone. panic ensued. we searched but could not find her. no one could. finally, we had to tell nicole what we had done. though she likely knew with her horse going mia. so, i tell her when my girl walks away in the dream, and say,
they have not seen her. no one knows where she is.

that's probably the best thing that can happen to her,
unflappable nicole says.

and i smile.

my girl returns and i tell her.

we make it home by the end of the dream and who is there waiting for us, velvet. looking like she had never been gone a moment. and we were relieved. i was relieved. and awoke to a hovering child wanting to play computer games.

i would have liked a different form, but accept the one given. so tangible, so real these horses are to me now. and this morning, bandit, the big baby's face hovered in my mind and i let him know i'm coming today.

he's huge, and i'm glad he is warming to me.

the large young thoroughbred let me scratch her mane, and used my body as a scratching post, rubbing her large head, which is nearly the size of my torsoe, up and down gently, so i could get behind her ears and the tricky spots i can't possibly reach without her yielding to my touch.

i would like to sleep more, but the farm calls and for these friends, these i love, i drag myself there and do the best i can for them. and i think they understand how i've come to love them.

my daughter and i were discussing friends the other day. she doesn't feel like she has many, after cutting loose a whole slew of girls who irritated her. and i said, i don't have many either, and we listed two humans locally, and the rest were horses. a bunny. parakeets.

she laughed and said,
your friends are all animals.

which didn't make me unhappy. it pleased me, actually.

kids and animals, that's all i need.

i've said it before, i don't need a lot of friends, just those i can't live without.

Monday, June 23, 2008

a bit farther

have you ever gone just as far as your strength will take you, and then pressed yourself to go just a bit farther?

i feel like i did that today. my girl wanted me to join the pool, and so i did. i told her, we won't go every day, but we'll go for an hour most days. so we spent our hour at the pool today, swimming back and forth, diving, enjoying the wet. (it was a hot muggy day).

this after i had worked out, i can't neglect my mechanical trainer, if for no reason other than, it is what i do for myself alone.

but around five pm, after having been at a staff meeting (our first), for two hours, then an hour and a half of work, i was wiped. completely bankrupt in the energy department.

lagging, i drug myself around the store and asked for lots of help from those i was working with.

the vet was with me tonight, and he's struggling, so i tried to explain a few things. to show him how to use the shortcut tools that are clearly visible. and i amended the new recipe cards so they sit or stand flat, so he could read them easier.

he was grateful, and it's the least i can do. i want the place to succeed.

but it doesn't look good. and tonight, with my last energy bar fading, i leaned heavily on the counters and moved at a sluggish pace. pushing myself just a bit farther.

and home, i asked for help, more help.

when i'm this tired, all that helps is a good cry, but i've no tears. i hope i sleep tonight. i stayed away from coffee, just so i could. and i hope tomorrow the humidity isn't atrocious.

we'll see.

i'm looking forward to the coming weeks. to what is happening.

my boss announced my departure at the meeting and the vet groaned.

which made me laugh.

i will miss them all, but it is time. and i need a new challenge. though i'm told, we have one less month to finalize our culminating semester and, well, i just hope i can pull it all off.

i'm sure i can. it will require everything i've got. and just a bit more.

now, to sleep. perchance to dream.

there is an oriental custom that if you turn your nightclothes inside out, you will dream of your lover. and i think, anything is possible.

i knew it.

the haitian woman i work with, when i handed her the envelope for my boss, looked at me. and i told her.

i knew it.
she said.
i could feel it in here.

when are you leaving?

where are you going?

she shook my hand.

i have to see everyone this afternoon, then work tonight. the store manager, all he said was,
i'm sorry to see this.

and i left, lighter than air.

there's something wonderful about leaving a place, going somewhere new. i like an adventure. i am a bit nervous, what if i'm poorly trained? what if i can't handle a seven hour shift my first day.

i know i can. it's just the jitters. and my j key sticks now so sometimes when i write jitters it comes out itters. and i'm going to just start leaving off the when they don't come out. see. lovely.

now today, i have to find that last editing pro ect. i'm ready to just get it off my plate for good. though it's a quagmire of editorial nits i have to pick, and i'm not looking forward to it. by far my most challenging project.

there's something about the layout of a book that speaks to the value the publishers place on the work. bly's book of ghazals is printed only on the right facing page.

i read it and thought, amazing. beautiful.

to have reached a place in your career, in your life, where a publisher will willingly part with that kind of negative space and be okay with it. just wonderful.

notice i'm using a lot of js. but they keep appearing. so just remember, they won't always be there. something he said to me once and i didn't believe. tori amos has this line,
i ran from him, in so many ways, guess it was his turn this time.

so true. so true.

i'm not running anymore. i'm looking forward, come what may.

humility first

that i know the schedule of my boss coming up, is merely an aside. i went and applied for the new job when i got sent home (hear me rationalizing leaving), and i can't be expected to stay when the place is run like that.

i told them flat out,
i've given you the best i've got. it's not good enough.
end of story. elsewhere i go. i don't continue to give and give until i drop, there is not enough martyr in me to go down for this company, or any other.

we have a staff meeting today, midday, ruining my plans, nearly. grrr. but i'll try not to swagger when i turn in my resignation. i'll try to be humble and modest and brief.

the letter is simple and to the point. there is no negotiating with me, no sum of money could get me to stay. i'm movin' on.

perhaps they'll be glad to see me go. who knows.

i just know it will be nice to see how things are supposed to be run by a manager who knows how to do her job.

i'm looking forward to it. but first, to resign, then the gym, then we're going swimming. (if the rain lets up)

then to the meeting, where i will make it officially official to everyone.

edited 160 pages all told last night, until i couldn't see straight.

finished up my personal project this am. now have one i forgot about left. that's it. then i'm done.

i could use a rest.

peace. out.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

from the editor's desk

got my red pen out (not really, but that is what comes to mind), and i'm blazing through things that have been on my desktop for months. i consider it a particular privilege that i get to read first drafts of unpublished works by great writers. i'm spoiled for unpublished works now. i glut on them like a hog at feed. what can i say, writers need readers, i'm the lucky sap who gets to read.

when i have time, that is.

i always have to be of a clear mind, with no particular agenda to approach the work of another writer. or i steer clear.

if i'm tired, crabby, pms-ing, forget it.

i just put it off.

and today, as i've poured through forty pages so far, i'm raring to go. this is what the work of editing does to me, it fires me up. gives me more energy.

but it took so long to get here. my semester ended a while ago, i don't know how long, but it feels like forever.

first i had to clean my apartment, and while i could do more, i can always do more, i am content with the current level of disarray.

then, i had to check off all the boxes that needed checking off, the mandatory little piddly crap that just needs to be done. and done in a timely fashion.

i'm still not cooking much, i can cook really good food, but if you piss and moan about it, i just stop cooking. why expend my energies when they are unappreciated? i cook during the day for my girl and let the rest go. it's not a perfect solution, but it is what i've come to. i'm too damn busy to be bitched at.

now, one more--no, two--projects to go, and i'm free for my summer class. i thought of a meaningful last minute addition to my poetry collection. a small notes section on the forms of poetry i employed this semester. while the examples i will include are pedestrian at best, they were a useful exercise. that's all i've got to say about that.

though i've got someone writing pages for me to edit as we speak (though this person has been working on it for about a year now, and has only managed a few pages, so i'm not lying awake pondering the prospect of having fifty pages tomorrow).

that simply won't happen.

and it helps that i've got lots of writer friends, because i've got lots of energy to read and edit.

but time is the issue now. i just don't have time to do it. these will likely be my last projects for a while. i have to focus on school, and the project (a poetry anthology for the poets i retreat to/with) i've commited myself to do this coming semester in addition to my studies.

all very worthwhile endeavors. trouble is, there is only one of me.

peace. out.


i just accepted the position for the job i wanted.
i'm out of my current place in two weeks. huzzah!

what a relief.

this as my boss tells me,
this compliance thing is tough.

well, duh.

if i had to put money on it, i'd say there won't be a store of that name there more than two months, maybe three from now. it's just not possible. unless some serious shit changes.

one of the kids i worked with today was so lackadaisical about it (did i spell that word right?), that i could tell she just doesn't care.

i'm so, so, so glad to be moving on in my journey. like this ring of hell has been completed.

it was just that i was working so hard for nothing. i was everyone's packmule. this new place is run with the proper standards and methods, and the work should be more evenly spread out. i'm looking forward to that.

the manager said, flat out,
i had to let someone go just the other day because she didn't want to be here.

which made me happy.

i look forward to working in an environment that is not dysfunctional.

i know no place is perfect, but the place i'm at is scary bad and i don't want to be that kind of manager. i want a manager who will inspire me. who will challenge me to become better than i am. to become the kind of manager i'd like to have.

i don't know how it will work out, perhaps this is just another step on the road. and if i can get a transfer to the store closer to my house, so much the better.

i needed to be sent home that day, it got me moving in the direction i needed to go. i was apparently not ready to make the change of my own volition and now, huzzah, the change has been made.

and i am so relieved, there are hardly words for it.

but it's something comparable to what i felt lying on the beach beside my best friend, our kids happily playing in the water, and there was not a care in the world or one other place i had to be.

there. here. this is where i had to, have to be.

and it's all good.

peace. out.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

dodge, dodge, dodge

i keep asking my girl,
are you going with me to all four days of dodge?

you keep asking me that,
she says, then asks,
what are the dates?

sigh. tweens. it's tough when they get older and a schedule all their own.

last year she went to two of the four days with me. this year, i hope to make it four of four. who knows what she'll want.

but it's a long stretch for a kid, and i can offer up the pass to others who may want to join me for the ride and the day (though, i don't know, sometimes i'm better off alone. but there are one or two poets who maybe i could take with me).

so i've got to get my tickets, i don't have them yet. and word is, someone got my card numbers, so my credit card company is issuing me a new one. i don't know how they got out, but my company said,
did you download some video games?


okay then, we're issuing you a new card.

kids, nothing better to do, i guess.

truth be told, i don't want to drag my kid to dodge, i want her to want to go. and, i think for the most part she does. but it's a fourteen hour day, four days in a row. last year she had conflicting commitments, which meant i had to drive her home midway through the day, then drive back. not doing that this year, that's all i've got to say.

i passed out after we got back from the farm. the horses were hot so we hosed them down, everyone with their head poking out into the aisle, sausages secure (stall guards, i know, but sausages is a cute word).

even the big guy, bandit, the one i ride, he let me hold him and hose at the same time, which is not something i would normally try, but there was a lot going on and i just needed to get it done. he gets very hot, and with those doors shut, even an 85 degree day is a scorcher.

i've come to really appreciate bandit. he used to be a hunting horse. (oh how my eyes itch, i think it's time to invoke benedryl). but now, he's just a teaching horse. i say, "just" but know that it isn't just what he's there for.

it's nice to have him calm and steady with me on foot. i try to just breathe and remain calm myself. it's hard to remember when the animal is towering over you, but he is gentle. if he startles, it's not that he's trying to, it's just that he did.

i keep telling my girl,
don't take things personal.

you see, velvet was in a bad mood when we arrived, but i think she was just hungry and hot. once we hosed her down and fed her, she was a peach.

and i love doing it. perhaps as much i love poetry. never thought i would say that. but we volunteered at a local community service project before we went to the farm, and though we're busy, it was good to do something in service to humans, not just horses.

though humans tax me to my limits, they also are a necessary evil. i keep telling my sister,
i'd really like to never have to deal with people again, but i just can't have it that way, can i?

she replies.

and i understand this. i'm sure other people feel that way too. more and more an artists commune is sounding like something doable for me, perhaps someday in my nomadic future, i'll wind up spending some time in concentrated creativity apart from the rigors of the daily grind.

but that is, in little snippets, what the farm represents in my life.

the life i want. the life i'm working toward. the life that is coming to me.

we don't arrive where we're headed by hyperspace. we get there by deliberate action. by the choices we make.

i'm ready for the good stuff to begin. ready for the changes i've dreamed to take place, ready for the uncertain future, to become certain.

all of this and more.

i'm ready.

strange things afoot at the circle k

if you know what movie that line is from, ten points.

so, the word is, my manager has put in for a transfer. hmm. there's another guy who will likely come up and manage, i'm on my way out, so it's all good.

i'm strangely happy. and that is not something i'm used to feeling. so i'm trying to quantify it. perhaps that is part of happiness, it's lost in the attempt to capture it. so i tend to say nothing. darkness is easier for me to write.

the chief came in today and had more marketing schemes for my book. dropped a few names, which i have no clue who they are.

he said,
maybe i should contact them for you.

but i reminded him of our overriding agreement to bury my book in his private collection.

he said i should assume a pseudonym because others would benefit from reading the book.

i don't know.

think about it.
he said, as he left.

i've thought about it. everyone wants to convince me that there is money to be made, and while i know that is the case, that has never been my motivation.

as long as what i need comes to me, as long as i can pay my bills, i'm solid.

i don't need massive surplus. it's nice to have, but as with any tribal person, once it hits my hands, i offer it up.

but i have a poem to write about that.

i have a sequel,
i told him today.

do you want to read it?

he said.

and so, i should get around to ordering additional copies for sale or gift. i've had positive response at the readings this work has been read at. so, perhaps i'll peddle a few.

the numbers aren't all i'm about. it's the poetry.

and, the fact of the matter is, these things are close to my heart. the circulation of soul in the marketplace is a dangerous thing.

i think it would cut close to the bone if i let it go out now. so, i will continue to hold them close. to keep them in check, for a while.

no one is demanding my work be out there, so why bother with it.

there is so much more to be and do. this is but a small thing. a tiny part of the equation. but one i enjoy immensely.

peace. out.

Friday, June 20, 2008

tell me who you are.

that i am constantly surrounded by people is of little comfort. there is still only one soul i want to be close to me. and that is not possible. so what am i to do? the best i can, i guess.

just do it,
my friend advised.
don't worry about being perfect. you demand a lot of yourself, and you do a lot, more than you know or give yourself credit for.

i said, the sun warm on my back.

a cloudy sky dappled the sun at the beach on wednesday. but i would have sat out there in a hurricane, so water starved i am. i miss the beach, the sand, the sun. there was something so common and familiar about it growing up. something i miss.

and all these things i miss pile one on top of the other.

and today nine years ago, i stood over the bed of my grams as she took her last breath, and i loved her into the hereafter. how i miss her.

some mornings i tumble out of her kitchen, still missing the familiar smells, the chile relleno i've never been able to make her way, but have my own spin on now.

there's so much i want to tell her, so much i want her to know.

do we get those chances again, to sit with those we love, to remind them how they made us who we are today. who we will be tomorrow.

i don't know.

all i know is, there is a seat across from me that stands empty.

for now, emptiness is a strange comfort. a familiar stranger. and i am content. lacking nothing, except the one whom i watch the horizon for.

come back to me.

up early.

suddenly, the days feel really long, and i'm fine with that. i have a lot to do, there never seems to be enough time, but with the sun going down after 8pm here, it's nice to get off work while it's just getting dark.

a cool wave has hit us, and we're grateful. it's been lifesucking hot lately.

i've pretty much decided, whatever the cost, the class being offered this summer is too good to pass up. it will be tough, especially overlapping my culminating semester, but whatever, i'm up for a challenge. and, truth be told, i am a bit lost having all this time and no weight of deadlines on me.

we got those sausages, we call them, stall gaurds--they are actually called, for the horses because it's so hot, and their doors block all the breeze. but a couple of them are naughty.

the old black mare, or velvet by name, is really good with her door open. the other two ponies taste everything, and pull their blankets onto the floor.

the little chestnut, bitty, even tried to slip out while we weren't watching, but the racket she made, made it impossible for her to get by.

so each time she was naughty, knocking over a trashcan (her door was wide open), i shut her door just a smidge, until, ultimately, she could only get her muzzle through the door, but the breeze flowed in her stall, i bet it felt like air conditioning to her.

and barnaby, my girl's new favorite, the one she'll ride in beginning competition this summer, samples everything, but doesn't try to escape. so we have to just keep our eye on him, and move everything out of reach.

it's amazing how far they can reach.

sometimes it feels like the ponies are just kids. i guess it's that innocence. that wonder they possess. they don't mean to be naughty, but the doors open and there are new things to do and play with.

i really should do something meaningful, but for now, this is about as meaningful as it gets. loading pictures of those i love on my phone. writing to and of those i love on my blog. what more in life is there?

i have to go workout today. i try for three times a week, and i think all told, i've only missed that goal five times, two of which have been in the last month. i noticed my calves in the mirror yesterday at the gym. there are all these defined muscles, and i can't recall seeing that on my body, it was a good feeling. i'm not where i want to be, or where i'm headed, but it's nice to see progress.

the mechanical trainer still kicks my ass, and moved me up to an intermediate workout, which is good, but i don't know that i can work any harder than i am. though, having said it, i know it's not true.

peace. out.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

the little things baby

got my new pink cellphone with an mp3 player. and not only that, i get to keep my old cell number, which makes me so happy.

i don't need to win the lottery, just get a nice guy at the at&t store to give me a magic number to call and get my old phone number back.

that is all i need.

i had asked my hubster to arrange it for me, but he said it wasn't possible. ha!

and the word at work is, we're officially on double secret probation. three strikes in a year and we're out.

i'm not sure anyone is surprised (at least i'm not), and i don't want to see this place fail, but it was clear the way things are being run is not right. it hasn't been right from the start.

so, i'm looking forward to moving on.

there is so much work to do at my place and i can't do it all. i know there are others who are trying to help, but it's too little. until everyone takes an active role at work, the place won't succeed.

i'm trying to figure out what i can do positively while i'm there. hoping all the while that i'll get called to move on very soon.

it's kind of bittersweet, but whatever, i'm over it.

one person cannot make a business succeed. and i've tried the entire time i've been there to make positive change. now i'm positive i need to make a change on my own as it's really a dysfunctional work environment where i'm not sure we are set up for success.

in fact, i'm certain we are not. and the latest word is we're going to start using only organic milk, which is wonderful. but the bottom line will be so awful, the grocery store might pull the plug on the place before the licensing people get the chance.

who knows.


Tuesday, June 17, 2008

my stuff and yours too

my girl has been stealthily passing off her commitments to me.

that i don't have time to realize this, or even catch the errors, is testament only to how busy i am.

this, while i'm contemplating a class over the summer, that will overlap the start of my culminating semester. how wise is this?

not very.

can i do it?

i don't know.

i spent the day mucking stalls and thinking about excellence.

i've let a lot, A LOT, slide in my life and sometimes i wonder if i'm making the right choices. i guess we can't know. if we knew it would be easy. life would be simple, cut and dry.

as it stands, it's not.

i'm grateful for the farm, i'm sorry that i can't catch the small details that are slipping through my fingers like wet spaghetti noodles.

but that's just how it is.

i like that my work, my job, does not require editorial skills of any kind. it requires i work other muscles. most of them physical. many of them social. these flabbier parts of my functioning are improving, but the details. my god, how they slip by.

dr. carlson would say,
don't sweat the small stuff, and it's all small stuff.

i could sit here and seethe over missing the dot on the j. but i can't. i have too much to do to waste time wishing i'd done a better job. at least this time we spelled everything correctly.

to my horror, i realized the last flyer we made up for my girl's riding instructor had two hugely misspelled words. i didn't even notice until i went to revise the flyer for this camp.

in picking up a piece of the puzzle she requested, i neglected to note where the camp was. i had thought my daughter did this, as she had said she would.

tonight i got an email asking where the camp is.

nightmare. i feel awful. but i guess, if you don't do it yourself, there is no guarantee the results are going to be worth anything.

and while we want to do excellently, we are fried. i am fried. i do the best i can.

that's what it comes down to.

i have to be good with that and get lots of grace from friends.

reckless and wild

yes, the accept song. that is in my head this moment. let me find it for you to get an idea. btw, i never knew that song was called restless and wild. damn, all these years, singing my own lyrics. who'da thunk it.

restless and wild
by accept

They're running wild
They're on a down hill ride
Like a rebel they look for more
Too young to die
Now you know your dreams are useless
And there 're lies You'll never tell
'cause you're so
Restless - restless and wild
Restless - restless and wild
Restless - restless and wild
Restless - restless and wild
Star born lovers
Angels in the night on a highway
They don't look back
Everybody's lost the way - yeah
The little girl wants to be an actress
Young boys are easy riders
They live so
Restless - restless and wild
Restless - restless and wild
Restless - restless and wild
Restless - restless and wild
Stay down - time will roll on
How do you feel when the night is gone
Stay down - time will come 'round
You are the man made for highway life
For the highway life
City lights moving on
No tomorrows - no destinations
Like a wheel turning on and on
You're a man born to run
Every world that you have seen was senseless
Keep moving on there's no other way
Cause you're so
Restless - restless and wild
Restless - restless and wild
Restless - restless and wild
Restless - restless and wild

anyway, that was a digression, but once i set off looking for a song, i've got to find a decent vid.

and we're driving home, jeremy comes on. and i've got to sing every line of eddie vedder whenever he comes on--so i keep waving off my girl, so i can sing about king jeremy the wicked.

then, they follow that with ac dc's dirty deeds. and i tell my girl, i love this song, i can't think of anyone i know who doesn't love this song.

it's a fine song. even though it is a celebration of a hit.

and i'm singing away, she's trying to deal with it. but i'm lovin' it, and we're tired and smell like horses, but we're happy to be. just to be.

so much to say. but now i'm off chasing songs again. and don't even remember what it was i had to say.

peace. out.

fly little girl, fly.

i still haven't wrapped my mind around not having the professor i wanted, or my back up next semester. it saddens me, but at the same time, these ill turns of fate always come with something surprising.

so i'm looking forward to the surprises. to whom i'll meet this next and final semester, and i will just continue to trust that it will be what it needs to be.

it's cooled off significantly here, and i'm glad. the heat was oppressive. and i don't do well sealed in. having windows open (even if it's warm) is better for me, than being shut in and air conditioned.

headache this morning, and i'm trying to remember how to just go with my day, to see what happens. for so long it's been about forcing my body into some sort of action. and now, i have a moment to rest. i need to do that. though i admit, i feel lazy, and being one who does not need to be forced to nap, it's hard to justify wanting to rest a bit.

i hope the nice weather holds out for the beach tomorrow. though i would probably go sit there in cloudy skies and be just as happy. it's more about the adventure, taking the day to lay on the beach, than the weather necessarily. just getting out of the routine and relaxing.

lying on the beach in my turquoise two piece, soaking up the rays. i look forward to it. perhaps i'll even manage a nice long walk alone down the shore to the boardwalk which juts out to the water. i didn't walk that far last time. but this time, it would be a nice adventure.

we're off to the farm soon. breakfasting at the little cafe. it's nice to have a routine with my girl, for she too needs love and attention, and my scattered attempts are hopefully sufficient. enough. that's all i've ever wanted to be for her, just enough.


Monday, June 16, 2008

the good always seems to arrive shitcaked.


home from a wonderful, WONDERFUL, poetry roundtable. and just got word that my prof, my all time favorite prof, whom i wanted to save for my last term, won't be back next term. sigh.

this is the risk i took, not taking him again, but i needed to study under a poet. and i know it was right.

no regrets.
i have no regrets.

but i'm just sad and going to have to grieve this loss.

that man got work out of me i didn't know i had in me.

and well, i'm going to go pout now.

suffer well, temptation

don't tempt me,
she said,
i don't suffer well, temptation.

and i hear her in my mind, when the chance for mischief comes.

go for it,
she whispers.
it's been a long time.

and i refuse.

what are you waiting for,
she asks.

i may be foolish, but i'm no fool. i may have inclinations toward things that are not mine, but i am also not fool enough to claim them. that which is mine will come to me. i believe this. and so i wait.

i walk away.

we wander together, she and i, my shadow, i guess you'd call her. and i listen to her sometimes, when her suggestions do not require a compromise of soul.

i listen to her sometimes.

my school has summer classes. sigh. and one of my other great loves besides poetry is psychology.

there is a jungian analyst whom i desperately want to study with (but that would take me in completely other directions), who is offering a summer class on the creative unconscious. i think i have to take it.

as much as i don't want to spend my summer studying, i think this is a road i need to go down, for personal reasons.

as the collected works of jung sit, unread in a crate on the floor. i know, i need to get to them, but i'm waiting for the right moment in time.

it's not that i need credit for everything i do, it's that the things i do are like steps in a dance. sure it's an improvisational dance, but a dance nonetheless. so i must wait for the music to dictate the steps, or for my soul to rise up and go. to take the dance, make the leap, step our further than i could have concieved in my mind.

maybe i need a second bachelor's in psych. that would be good. i would love that.

so, fare well free time, i shall see you again someday.

for now, for me, it is psych, and i'm excited.

peace. out.

this morning and every morning

feeling a bit out of it this morning, so i decided to go after the song in my head, anything, anything, but performed on rockstar some time ago when life was simpler and i had more than i realized. i guess that is always the case, isn't it, we don't know what we've got until it's gone.

here's the song:

the song by dramarama, performed by storm large.

Oh, gee, what is it tonight?
At least just tell me what the hell is wrong,
Do you want to eat, do you want to sleep, do you want to drown?
Just settle down, settle down, settle down...
I'll give you give candy, give you diamonds, give you pills,
Give you anything you want, hundred dollar bills,
I'll even let you watch the shows you want to see,
Just marry me, marry me, marry me...

I'm so sick of you tonight,
You never stay awake when I get home,
Is something wrong with me, something wrong with you?
I really wish I knew, wish I knew, wish I knew...
I'll give you candy, give you diamonds, give you pills,
Give you anything you want, hundred dollar bills,
I even let you watch the shows you want to see,
Because you married me, married me, married me...

When I was young I learned a game,
Where love and happiness were the same,
Now I'm older and I don't play,
I found out the hardest way,
I got wasted, she got mad, called me names and she called her dad,
He got crazy and I did too, wondered what I did to you.
I'll give you candy, give you diamonds, give you pills,
Give you anything you want, hundred dollar bills,
I even let you hear the songs I want to sing,
I'll give you anything, anything, anything...
I'll give you anything, anything, anything

Sunday, June 15, 2008

twelve hour daze

i can't recall the last time i worked such a long day, i'm fried. my back slightly aches, my feet are relieved to be shod of carpet and no more shoe.

i notice my tendencies to lift heavy boxes, and i find it curious, that when i'm stepping down a six foot ladder with a giant box of cups, that i put it on my head. like a water pot. and carry it to the cage, still on my head, where i load it onto the shelves, into the little storage arrangement i devised.

curious. i feel aboriginal at times like that. i guess it's as close as i'll ever get to watering someone's horse from a well. so be it.

had my interview today, and it went well.

we'll definately be in touch,
they said.

the drive wasn't horrendous, and i couldn't see beyond the moment, so i decided to let my gut tell me. to feel the place out, literally. do the drive and see if i could live with it.

though i did see a little chipmunk slowly dying in the road. i've never run over an animal before, but as i watched his tail twitching as i drove by (i couldn't tell as i'd approached how long he'd been there, or if his tail were caught in the breeze), but it weren't he was agonizing. and i contemplated going back, and prayed for a quick end to his suffering.

i wouldn't know how to end his life, short of driving over him, and that seemed something i couldn't do, so i drove home, well, not home actually, but to work. my current place of employ, hardly home by any stretch of the imagination.

i'm done, and when i'm done, there is nothing else to say or do. it's over.

so, i'm feeling revived, (or was five hours ago when i went back to work), that soon, it will all be just a memory. my time at this place. it was a necessary place for me to grow. and as i sat and laughed, genuinely, with the new manager, and soon to be ex-manager, i knew it was something i need to do. to leave this place so close to home and start somewhere fresh.

i don't know why i was there, but i will certainly miss the people. even the uncomfortable ones. they grow us, perhaps more than those we cozy up next to.

i'm tired, must vegetate immediately, but fortunately, for this last minute shift (which will be time and a half, plus a bonus for time served above and beyond the call of duty on a sunday). that makes me happy.

and that it worked out for me to get to sit with the poets i love. the poets i love. the poets i love. tomorrow.

then the farm, then the beach wednesday.

all in all, shaping up to be a fine week.


Saturday, June 14, 2008


i call the shower at 5:30, i say to my husband before hitting the hay last night.

apparently, as he stumbled by at 5:28, it's now 5:33 and he's still in there, he either didn't care or didn't hear me. i am thinking the first.

trouble is, i punch in with a timeclock. he just shows up when he wants and leaves when he wants. the luxury of being an engineer i guess.

5:34, he emerges, slightly (at least the door is open).

and i am waiting to go in.

he's out, finally, and i must get ready for work.

are all men this inconsiderate?

i doubt it. just mine. just mine.

Friday, June 13, 2008


that i've been asked to explore the possibility of another mfa program is really wonderful. my current prof, who is now my former prof (he just returned my final packet with his blessing on the road, and not before issuing a gracious invitation to do my master's work with him).

i am considering it.

the other program i am considering is a regular residency program which would require me to be present there and i just don't know how that would be possible. though i really want to study under the matriarch.

another program i'll consider is in philly, but i don't plan on moving to philly, so it would be a stretch.

who knows, maybe i'll just apply and see what happens. alternately, i can stay with my current school, but i'm not sure i want to do that. who knows. i hear it's competitive. we'll see. maybe i should just apply to them all and decide later.

that sounds like a good idea, and for lack of a better plan, i'll go with it. i guess i need to start that process now, since i'll be ready by fall '09.

such terrible wonders.

the sun was wonderfully warm today. and i lay beside my friend and we baked a bit in preparation for our day at the beach next week.

there are very few people i want to spend entire days with. very few people i can tolerate (or can tolerate me, for that long--believe me, i know i'm no peach).

but when you hit it, you hit it.

and tomorrow after work, i'll go watch a movie with her and her hubby, then away to the farm.

the decompression time is nice. and i love them, i really do. they do wonders for my soul. they remind me what it's like to be in a family. and that, no matter what, it's all right. whatever happens, there's always somewhere to turn.

i need that kind of compassionate companionship.

she sent me home with an armload of books today, things she's been hauling around for a great while. i didn't need them, but one or two might even work for next semester's study which i'm getting excited about.

i know the theme of it all ready, and the focal point, where i'm headed. how to get there is the key. i just have to trust the right books will present themselves. that is all i've ever done.

and then, that time will conspire in my favor to bring my essay, my culminating essay, my myriad poetry projects, my belly dance, to fruition with the wonderment i see in my mind.

i have great ideas. so many i can hardly keep up with them.

now just to execute them. and at the same time, keep the ball rolling, the plates spinning on their poles. it's not an illusion, it's real.

and it's time to move forward.

that my prof didn't entirely hate everything i wrote, that he actually had positive (even negative feedback, as long as it's honest, is beneficial), things to say, is some comfort. but i have not changed. i think my work just came full circle in his eyes and i finally produced what he was wanting to see.

perhaps that is what makes us think better and larger of others. that they somehow live up to our expectations. however whack that thinking is, i don't think it too far from the truth. what else do we have in these little minds we carry around, but ideas, expectation, and a fist full of experience.

how do we see the world? through our own tainted lenses.

what has truly changed in my work, nothing from my perspective.

what has changed in my work from his perspective, everything.

which is it? both and neither, i'd say.

perhaps we just found a groove. the same station to relay our varying frequencies. and somehow the words broke through and became distinguishable.

yes, i think that is very close to it.

i've grown cynical about relations and understanding apparently.

peace. out.

sun soaked

today i go to the park and veg with my nj best friend. we'll talk for hours and find again, why we come together so much. kindred.

the girls will circle the pond, and catch turtles and frogs (gross, i know). and i'll pretend to be interested. not pretend so much as not walk away. (which is for me, not pretending).

we will laugh and it will be well.

i look forward to it.

even got up early, worked out. now, it's off to play before work.

always work. but work is the story of everyone's life, mine is no harder or more interesting than another's. only difference is, i frame it in words.

peace. out.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

he of the blue eyes

today i had a conversation with a man who had gorgeous blue eyes.

he called himself, slow.

but i disagreed.

he said i was kind, but i told him,
we're all slow in some area or another.
(he should see me doing math. yikes)

and he seemed to have a quite deep conversation with me.

he interjected himself into my day in such a way that i'll not quickly or easily forget.

i dig those people that can put aside the barista gig and get real with me.

are you buddist?
i asked him.

no, i'm of no particular religion. i was raised catholic.

i said.

i told him how i was walking to work today (because the damn truck was in the shop) and while it was hot, i was grateful to be able to walk to work in a country where we're all fat and happy, for the most part).

he said,
we are the source of our own misery.


he was a good man, and i don't say that about many men anymore. i just don't find many souls who can truly engage in real time. in person.

perhaps it's where i hang out. i don't know.

but it was nice, in a few hours of what i've come to understand is just work, to have someone really be present to me and with me.

to shake me out of the drudgery of my day, and sometimes my existence (i'm not always "enlightened," sometimes, perhaps most times, i'm as lost in the dark as the next guy).

also rob came back in, kayaker. gave me a great tip.

i can't take cash,
i told him.
but what have you got for me in the way of verbal tips?

never play poker with a guy whose first name is a city. like vegas bob.

he has a smile to die for. tall, dark, handsome. he should be in the movies.

his untailored striped shirt slagging off his broad shoulders.

i enjoy the people who stumble into my presence for the most part.

especially when they engage me in return.

it's nice to be treated with respect.

peace. out.

early now

i like that i'm able to roll out of bed by 7:30. that's a huge improvement for me. and it proves, at least to me, i'm not depressed anymore. what a relief.

i sat at the library yesterday, in my chair, and while i saw a hawk break cover a couple times. i didn't fall apart.

big strides. huge, actually.

but i was tired, and we walked home and i passed out. i'm not sure if tired counts as stabalized. but i know a calm in my life at the moment, i've not felt for a long time. it's still a weird calm, but it's not a roller coaster, and i'll take what i can get.

i wore my girl's flip flops to yoga last night (because she'd commandeered mine. i hate it when she does that), and she has these three level black rainbow sandals that must be broken in. i broke in my six level black, and she broke in her six level rainbow rainbows, and we wear my pink flat camos all the time (those are the ones she commandeered).

so my sister, who acquired some at the same times said,
just suck it up and wear them. there is no way around it.

my black six levels have leatherette straps, which were mercifully giving. my girl's have nylon straps which are ruthless.

so i wore them for a short walk to pick up my dodge yesterday, which didn't get fixed. they had the truck all day and didn't fix it. piss me off, now i have to take it back today. whether they want it there or not, they have to fix it. especially since i may have to walk to work today if they don't get it done. grrr.

which is no biggie except that it means i have to walk home, and it may or may not be dark, i can't remember now. we get off an hour earlier, because they changed our schedule. so it may be fine and i can use a nice walk.

i have a lot of energy, shall we say.

but i wore my girl's black three levels to yoga after retrieving the truck because they "didn't hurt" and by the time i got to yoga, spots of skin had come off on the top of my foot, between my big toes. ouch!

and the worst part of it was, i had to reach back and grab my foot and stand with one leg up, the opposite arm up, while i'm clutching this foot. i could feel the newly tender spots burn under my hand, and i tried to focus on breathing through it.

find a focal spot,
she'd say.

my foot ached but not the one i was holding. at one point, we did this lift your leg up and move it knee bent, open and closed, like a door turning on it's hinge. after doing that for a few minutes, we stood with the flat of that same foot pressed into the calf. my down foot, or standy foot as i might be inclined to call it, ached. it got very tired from that stretch.

i think i fought through that pose, but when we started lifting our arms with that one leg up, that is when i fell out of it.

i must away. gym is open.
girl is finally up.

time she's a wastin'.

peace. out.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008


my belly dance instructor is also a pilates and yoga instructor. so i'm taking her summer yoga class. and since i didn't connect with her last semester, it's been over six months since i've seen her. i've missed her, and she was glad to see me too, which is nice.

i handed her my poetry book and she was grateful because her poem is in it. she flipped to it and read it, saying,
i love that poem.

i didn't eat before the class, i hadn't eaten since early this morning so there was no problem with all that bending and such.

i think i stretched things tonight that have never been stretched. and it's nice to see her in another capacity.

when you fall out of a pose, that is your greatest teacher.

remarkably, i only fell out of one pose. though i know i have a long way to go. she didn't weird me out, and that's a plus.

(i did also see my tai chi instructor, and promised to try to get back to it. it's been a long semester off, and now summer off. so i'll have to try for a fall tai chi class. we'll see if i can get the days. i did find out the schedule for fall in conversation with an administrator who was there. good news, the days i need to take are tues, weds. my all ready established days off).

my belly dance instructor is trying to talk me into taking an african dance class in the city, with her. but i'm not going for it. i think if i did it would be once and just to spend the day with her. i really adore her.

but no one needs to see my hiney jiggling around like that (with belly dance it's different), i don't know how, it just is. but if she invites, i may say yes, just to try it. i don't know. it might be too weird for me.

i told her about the songs i'm considering and she knew them all, i hope she will help me with it next semester, because i really need more than what i've got now to feel confident enough to dance for strangers.

my instructor is all about empowering women, so i think this may be the time for me to reclaim the dance as my own.

how i want to study flamenco. i cannot tell you. but first let me focus on this and then, that. that will come in time.

now, to spend time with my daughter.

peace. out. (that we spend all our time together escapes her, and she requires "time" when i'm not passed out or busy with school. sheesh!)

on the death of a cellphone

yes, i've killed another electronic piece of equipment. and walking out of the gym today, i dropped my mp3 player, and it, too has ceased functioning. sigh.

i can't workout without my music. i've said it before.

but the quiet is something wonderful. i'm not sure what is worse, having your cellphone work and not being able to answer it, or having it not work at all. i can answer the phone, acutally, i just can't talk or hear anything being said (which is the equivalent of it not working).

meanwhile, it's still scorching hot out here, and our hole up attitude, is foolish. all the windows sealed up, we were all trying to huddle around the one ineffective a/c in the apartment, i came up with a load of laundry from the basement and my daughter hollers,
the bunny!

he found the temperature around his cage unacceptable as well, and parked himself, elongated across the box fan in front of the a/c. he just lay there, his fur coat swishing in the breeze.

we brought him into the livingroom where we had a family (and bunny) campout because it was just so hot. he has a dedicated fan now and previous too small cage (he can sleep in it, but not much else).

my husband and i argued, which makes it really feel like home. you know?

the man can never hear me, except for when he wants to, so while i'm off trying to cook dinner and find a new cell phone, he's down the hall saying he can't hear me. so i let an "idiot" fly, and of course he hears it.

which i found particularly comical.

he didn't like it one bit, and asked me why i called him that.

because i was frustrated.

and sunday, i have an interview all lined up, but i don't want to drive a half hour, though i'd definately get more hours, i'm not sure if it is the right thing to do.

my union sent me the requested membership book, but also a little bonus. someone else's personal information. it was an oversight, clearly. but i called them and said,
this is disconcerting.

they said,
just send it back.

and i said,
i will, but you have a lot of information in your hands, please be careful with it.

i don't know that he got it. he probably thinks i'm just someone complaining. maybe i am. who knows. i just think if we have to entrust unions and such with our personal information, they should be more careful with it. that's all i'm trying to say.

the freezer guy came over to buy coffee the other day, and i said,
ah, here he is.
he said,

and i replied,
you were busting my chops.

my manager asked him what he wanted, and he said,
whatever she says.

so i sold the guy a large coffee instead of a small. piddly, but it was a nice gesture. and we're square now. though i think i overheard him yelling at someone in the freezer the other day.

something about the cold, brings out the devil in him.

and i'm told by another manager that my manager has complaints against her from another person (at least one), working with us.

so, who knows what will happen. i surely don't.

i just know that work is work. not much can be done about that.


Tuesday, June 10, 2008

to go or not to go

i've got an interview on sunday, which could result in a position change (pretty much lateral), but i would be in the company i want to be in, though the drive is more than the drive i previously left, and with the cost of gas at the moment, i'm not sure that is wise, as the salary increase would be negligible. having said that, i would get more hours, most likely, and then there is tuition reimbursement.

can i handle more hours?

i don't know.

so i'm going to make the drive, do the interview, meet the people. see what happens.
see how far it actually is. it would be a big commitment. huge.

i need to consult with my advisors.

i'm not sure what to do. and right now, i need a nap. i should workout tonight as i didn't yesterday. maybe i'll just pass and do it tomorrow. trouble is, the mechanical trainer isn't forgiving. it leaves me nasty notes if i miss a day or workout.

dinner's on the stove. laundry's making it's way to being done. and i need a nap.

we had a blast with the horses today. we're sort of getting a routine down.

but i think my phone has officially died.

such is life.

racking up the work

so, i've got three projects on my desktop now, not including my private book and another anthology, plus the anthology i just agreed to do for the group of poets i retreat with.


how to find the time? there is no time, one must just dive in.

soon though, i'm going to run out of free time, we'll have to prioritize.

and i go see my sister for a week plus in august, when my final semester begins. i'll start residency there and finish it up here. we're going to drag my brother to the beach with us and just have a good time together, all girls most of the week.

it is so hot out here now, flirting with the hundreds. just blazing.

i've finally finalized all my projects and i'm officially jettisoning them off my desktop into oblivion, not to be unearthed again unless my prof says something is substandard. we'll see. i didn't write much on the books i read, but the paper was still forty-four pages long.

i did share with him my favorite poets, nine of them, and i'm curious to see what he's going to say. he wanted published poets, but these are all self-published, or will someday (i'm convinced--at least if i have any say in the matter) be published.

i need my next tat. i keep delaying it because we're going swimming, or to the beach. etc. but i have to just do it, probably after our beach trip next week.

gotta go. the farm is calling.

Monday, June 09, 2008

plop, plop, fizz, fizz

oh shit is that my phone?

what makes a crackling sound when you put it in water?


my girl rescued mine, so once again it is in pieces "drying out"

technology, what can i say. it is nice not having to be answering it. though there are some drawbacks.

i spent the better part of the day "tweaking" my poetry collection, and i'm surprised but i like it. it's kind of like an overstuffed suitcase, but whatever. i'm going to let it ride for a while, until someone convinces me it's a bad idea.

though i don't listen. that's a fact.

farm tomorrow, though gas is outrageous, it's worth the drive, it's worth the time. it's worth it all. we have to get up early though, that's the hardest part, not every week, just tomorrow.

and i'm looking forward to not having to force read books.

peace. out.


so, i'm up till just past midnight finishing up my poetry book, which is, btw, titled, empty of sorrow, the title of a poem i just wrote.

this morning, i get an email from my prof to the group saying, i've put off your final presentations until june 13. sigh. there is no end to this endless ordeal. i just hope i don't forget to turn up on june 13.

if i knew yesterday there would be specific time to work on that element, i would have waited. as it stands, i'm going to leave it, and call my job done. i've turned in all my evaluations, dotted all my j-s and crossed all my fs.

now, i wait for my prof to tell me his thoughts. for june 13 to roll around so i can end this shindig. and then, i'm done.

but i'm going to start taking it kind of easy now. i still have to find about sixteen more books for next semester, i all ready have my four belly dancing books. i think i have to focus on the psychology/essays pertaining to poetry, things that inspire my particular poetry. ah yes, joseph campbell. there it is.


Sunday, June 08, 2008


how do you spell fried?

my semester is thankfully over, i'm spent, worn out. just want to finish editing my poetry collection, and call it a wrap. all the original writing i'm going to do, is done, and i've left the verbiage just cloudy enough i can save my big momma essay for my culminating semester (which starts in august, hallelujah!).

i've clarity now on what i need to do next semester to finish up this journey. a clarity i've never known before. and i hope it will be as i see it in my mind. at the end of next semester, i'll have that belly dance taped, a poetry collection of my own (another, sigh--and hopefully a companion cd for each, if i can find a soul with a tape recorder and some free time), and a poetry anthology of poets i retreat with (and to), as well as that big stinkin' essay i've been working my way up to.

i'm just not ready to write it now. though if it came to me tomorrow, i'd write it down and be done with it, i know the value of waiting for the right time. right now there is still mist and shadow over the words i need to complete that work.

i'm tired, in the best way. just in from work where i've taken a decidedly more relaxed approach. though there is so much to be done, i just realize, everyone, every single one of us has to help do it. i cannot do it alone. never could.

i understand that afresh.

reviewing my semester in essay today, i see how far i've come. where did i begin? who was i then? i don't remember. that girl has slipped into the sea, never to return. but i like who i am now. today. this minute.

there is a zen koan that goes,
become who you are.


the best of times are coming my way. the worst of times have passed. and even if a few showers fall, it serves only to make the flowers bloom again in time. it can't rain always, or so i've been told.

and tonight, at the end of this path that felt, at times, endless and insurmountable, beyond my capacity--though never beyond my will, it just feels good.

so i will edit my collection, that may never be sold.

but since i finally broke down and gave the chief my poetry book with instructions that he bury it in his private collection. i had been waiting to see what he'd say, wondering if he still thinks there are things that i should not write down. i guess not because he said to me yesterday,
you're a powerful writer. a lot of people can relate to those poems. if you ever need a review, just ask.

he wants to sell my book, to help me sell my book.

but i am not ready, yet.

the time is drawing near. and i hope this second collection becomes more than i imagine it is in my mind. (i do not think it on par with the first, but i have been wrong before).

i am willing to accept it if it is good. i am willing to couple it with the first. i am willing to devote myself to it's keeping, if it is more than i imagined it to be.

long night ahead, lightning illuminating the sky outside, i'm tired, but this is the kind of work i live for. editing. it is my purpose. editing and poetry.

perhaps someday, i will also know peace.


Saturday, June 07, 2008

sponge bath anyone?

so after eight hours of working, i drive an hour and a half to retrieve my girl from my new jersey best friend, and then make our way up to horse country.

we listen to books on tape when we ride that far, and talk.

she enjoys my music, too. there's no end to this kid's refined taste. (what can i say?)

so we get to the stables, and it's damn hot. at least 95 degrees. felt like 100. i had bought my girl a cooling vest, soak it in water and put it on, keeps you cool for hours.

i put it on first to see if i could get myself one in bubble gum pink (my girl's suggestion), but since it's a child size, and while it did fit, it fit more like a child's size, anyway, it worked out, because it soaked me through then i took it off and she wore it.

lovely idea. she'd been bugging me for months to order it, i finally broke down and got it, just in the nick of time, it seems.

so, her favorite (she has two favorites now, as do i, actually, i'm probably nearing closer to three or eight).

anyway, her favorite arabian pony is all sweaty in his stall and she wants to give him a sponge bath.

i'm not about to let her just give one horse a sponge bath when all of them are hot and sweaty, and as much in need of tlc as the arabian. barnaby, by name.

so, she sponges him down while i'm doing whatever it is i do (i lose track and we piddle about a lot now).

but there's this small chestnut pony whom i've never much been drawn to, but she's nice enough. only dragged (or drug) me across the field once. amazing how a small pony, twelve hands or so, my girl says, twelve point two hands, when she wants to go graze, can make me follow. and i'm not wanting, so not wanting to manhandle these lovely creatures. i'd rather just let them graze, but then i run the risk of being viewed as a pushover, so the compromise i strike is, a few nibbles of grass when they behave (unless i'm specifically there to let them graze), enroute. and i move them forward nibbling along the way. i don't always let them nibble. i don't want it to become a requirement. but i hate to deny them fresh grass when all i've got to do is be with them anyway.

so, bitty, that's her name (more because she bites than because she's tiny, though she's never bitten me). she's ridden a lot, lots of little girls like her and i always see her getting groomed, etc. this is not the kind of horse i tend to give my attention to. i'd rather attend to the lesser minded horses. i don't know why, something makes me want to groom the ungroomed, i guess.

well, i started stroking her neck, and she loved it. i scratched that spot on her neck that makes her elongate and smile.

at one point, we had three horses smiling at us and we were standing there laughing. amazing. wonderful and amazing. my girl tells me velvet never smiles. (she has, however, turned her back and farted at us when we were all tired after camp week). but today, all smiles after her sponge bath.

it was gorgeous.

and the big baby is bandit, he's skittish, hates to be groomed. hates to the point of practically ripping the crossties down. but i've been trying to get him used to my presence. and he followed me around his paddock the other day, right with me the whole way around while i picked up trash in there. he's a pushover when he wants to be.

he's giant. just huge. but i lost my story.

no matter.

i wanted to sponge him down because he was one of the hottest of the group. and standing in the aisle with the cool breeze and a light bath, before they had to get closed up in that hot stall again, i'm sure it really made a lot of difference.

anyway, just getting near bandit (the big baby) is iffy. but getting near him in a grooming capacity carrying a bucket, is something i wasn't sure he'd let me do. but i stayed calm and he let me. once i got his neck and chest wet, he was glad to have me do his body. it was lifesucking hot today.

and there he stood. like a gentleman.

and we opened the stall doors, some of them just enough so everyone could poke their head in the aisle and feel the breeze, and that's when time just fell away. we worked and sweated, sponged and played. groomed and loved the horses today.

and there was no place else we'd rather be.

we were supposed to have gone camping after the farm today, but with the heat had decided we'd forego the pleasure of sweating it out, and we were so glad to just have hours to waste on our dear friends.

bucky and prince were out in the far paddock battling flies and gnats. i struggle seeing them bearing the brunt of the heat in the day, unmasked, untended except for hay and water.

but we come to the fence and they let us stroke their necks and kiss their muzzles. my daughter weaved a daisy into my braid. we stayed as long as we could with the flies pestering the boys, and then we went to say another round of goodbyes.

nickering and contented sighs, since they had all eaten. we mucked any new remainders and drove away, just before godzilla (the nickname we've given the owner) pulled up.


utter and complete.

Friday, June 06, 2008

god bless 'em

the union, that is.

i asked them what to do about being sent home, and they said,
a department manager doesn't have the authority to do that.

i let them know it wasn't the first time she's done it. and i'm not the first one she's done it to.

i'm of a mixed opinion about this. i don't want to be vindictive. and i'm going to just try to focus on my tasks at work and get through it.

when i asked them what to do, if i should show up for my scheduled shifts, they said,
yes, talk to the manager of the store and let him know what's going on.

which i did.


i hate this negative vibe happening.

i have to not feed it, so i'm trying to prepare myself for work. but i wear my emotions on my face. you know when i'm seething.

and while i'm not seething anymore, i will just try to breathe. and do my job.

until something else presents itself.

that which is mine will come to me. i believe this.

what is best

i'm not sure what is best anymore. what do you mean by best?

certainly, we aren't talking the best interest of the customer (which is what i think standing for cleanliness standards--minimum, by no means extreme standards at that). the customer is certainly not the priority of this particular establishment.

parting the customer from coin is.

that is contrary to my purpose in life.

while i can make myself the noble martyr, i won't. i know i need to bone up on my sales strategies and confidence, but that is not something that happens over night. i'm amazed at how people are expected to change instantaneously.

it just doesn't happen.

so, if i go for the job i want, i will be hired at and have to drive about thirty minutes away. is it worth the trade off to get my foot in the door of a company i want but having to be so far from home?

i'm just not sure.

since i'm at the grocery, i could be asked to transfer to another department or store, but in a department transfer, i lose the connection with the coffee joint i so cherish. though the cashiering gig is mindless enough. apparently, they want to pay people to stand around and read. and i'm willing to consider it.

(it amazes me how one leadership style can take a productive employee and completely arrest their enthusiasm. i don't want to lead that way. perhaps it's just that companies no longer know what to do with an employee who actually works? wouldn't that be something?)

in a transfer to another store, i cut the commute by about ten minutes, but the larger issues of store politics remain.

i was told today by a fellow employee (the only other older lady who actually cleans), not to involve the store manager in this, but just to stay and do my job. she says,
i have peace when you close at night.
(because she doesn't have to spend her shift cleaning what should have been cleaned before she got there).

but neither of these options really feels like recipes for success. as much as i want to stay in the place i'm at, for sheer proximity alone. i don't know that i can justify it any longer. i will not rush off and be the fool, i will work my appointed shifts, do the best job i can, while lining up a really sweet gig somewhere else.

a mediocre job i can find anywhere, i'm looking for a stellar job.

whatever that may look like.
i'm open to suggestions at this point.


Thursday, June 05, 2008

breathe. breathe. breathe.

so, it was a long time coming, and i kept my mouth shut as long as i could. but the fact is, i'm a damn hard worker and if you don't give me props for that, i can go somewhere that will.

my boss and i faced off today, and i gave her the option of sending me home, which she took.


so i came home via the local competition and filled out an application.

they want to hire me immediately.

what a surprise.

i'm not trying to be a shit, but i'm a valuable worker. give me a task and you don't have to think about it again.

but i can't deal with a five year old manager anymore. something's gotta change.

and so, whether i'm ready or not, the ball is rolling and i'm not sure what will come of this latest exchange, but i've always fared better, and i trust this will be no different.

i told my husband what happened and i said,
are you surprised?

he said,
i'm surprised it took you so long to get fed up.

the guy knows me, apparently.

besetting fears

i don't like to acknowledge them, give them names and faces. i'd rather just have them leave. but they will not.

they come with pulsing emotion, stealing my breath away. and when i say,
i do not do fear.
i mean it.

so in my composed stoicism utterly feigned, i try to remember to breathe.

in and out.

my tai chi instructor once laughed as i blurted,
it's hard to breathe.

because it is. when you're focused on something else. it's hard to remain calm and centered.

i struggle with it anyway.

and my sweet sister confesses her fears to me and i'm full of remedies.

evaluate them. acknowledge them. let them go.

so much easier said than done.

and i tremble at the fears that breathe down my neck, and wish they would just go. or i could crawl back in bed for a long while and it would be better somehow.

but it will not.

there is no place to go if i am afraid of them. they just multiply.

and denial is no river i want to frequent. i've seen the carnage in my own family, those who have gouged their very eyes out saying,
i do not see it. i do not see it.
all the while, it is standing right before them, naked as a jay bird.

how can you miss it,
i ask.

and when it comes to me, it frightens me, i understand afresh, why, how one would rather run and hide than deal with besetting fears.

they are too much and my plans go awry.

when i think it through in my head, plan it out.

in actuality, it spirals out of control (at least my clenchjawed control is fodder for more mistreatment). and i seethe, and burn, and leave as fast as i can.

i would like to conquer these fears today. to look them straight in the eyes and say,
you have no power over me.

i must. i must.

but first, i must breathe.

Wednesday, June 04, 2008

what the

so i walk into work tonight, knowing my boss' last words to me were,
don't clean so much, make sales. focus on sales.


i arrive to a sink FULL of dirty dishes, floors that are nearly black with coffee and crap (who knows what all is there), squeezy syrup things that are all slathered with syrups, and i'm supposed to ignore all that (that is just behind the counter, i didn't even look outside when i got there).

my boss bounces out saying,
sorry about the mess.

and i just keep washing dishes, saying, okay.

one thing she doesn't appreciate about my work style is that i write things down. my sieve of a mind (for things that don't matter--you can't imagine the poetry crap that sticks in there--and work, to me, doesn't matter. i can get another mediocre job anywhere anyday and they will be glad to have a hard worker like me).

jobs are easy to come by.

so i try to tell my boss, rather than arguing about weaknesses (mine is, without exception, sales. i have to work on that. i have a plan, and that plan will be executed. i will not ignore cleanliness for sales though, that is cart before horse in my mind), let's focus on strengths. i leave her a note, we do this all by note:

perhaps there is a way for us to work together using our strengths.

i see that we perfectly compliment each other. if you want to leave a place looking like a dorm room (as i imagine them to be, and since my kids are either college current or college bound, this analogy makes sense), there better be someone who cleans shit up.

cause i say, we can sell all day long. when people start getting sick, or see the sloppy way we're running things, they aren't going to come back, or they're just going to turn around (i would).

so, i'm doing the best i can and am probably going to ignore her ranting about my overmuch cleaning. even the kids i work with said, in my absence,
if suzanne weren't cleaning, this place would be a disaster.

kids say this.

i don't know. i'm certainly not there to argue. and we do need to make sales. but i can't sell shit when the floor is black and everything has milk snots on it. (gross, i know).


Tuesday, June 03, 2008


in the rush and hurry of my life, there are these photo image moments of utter and complete silence.

the horse grazing in the field, the look of contentment on my daughter's face.

no grinding of metal on metal, or alarms sounding, or phones ringing, or cars whizzing by. just silence.

the swish of a horsetail and the rasping of hairs as he bats the flies away.

the warm sun licking my shoulders, the cooling breeze tickling the weeds.

and these are the moments i begin to believe again.

i'm not sure in what. or why.

but i know, something some reason some purpose has to be in place for all this to be. the goodness of these moments.

and i look forward to the coming hard work of the week, the writing of my essays and finishing off my semester.

today as the horses followed me around the paddock, i walking the interior for the first time, they followed a step behind me, one right beside, with me all the way.

and horses have this way of utterly accepting where you're at.

your limitations, your foibles.

sure, they'll get their way if they can, but who wouldn't. it is no slight to their nature that if they see an open gate they'll slip through it. i would.

there's too much grass out there and the flies are thick in here.

sometimes, all we can do, is wait for the one with the power to undo the latches.

Monday, June 02, 2008

the duality

when i get home, i'm not sure what it is but it doesn't take long for the wonder to drain out my toes and dissipate into the ether.

i struggled to figure out what to do today.

my daughter regularly rescues my heart from under the feet of the one we live with. and i try to return the favor.

while i was away, my visual file, the one which inspires and challenges me, was packed up and put away. my girl managed to grab it and tuck it safely out of sight, which she tells me was not its intended destination. (the basement was, if you are wondering)

i find it, on an average day, folded up and stuffed behind the tv. i extract it and open it up in front of the tv some days, and spread it out across the wall others (the trouble is we are the small members of this house and a linebacker sized person can't navigate our tiny apartment without scraping up against it).

that i have tweaked this visual file for years now, i have lost track of how many, at least five, should be some hint of its importance.

but apparently, it's not.

so going from a place where i'm regarded as an equally talented and contributing member of a strong group of artists, to a place where i'm always in the wrong place at the wrong time, breaking things, cars microwaves cameras, yes, i break mechanical things, it's my nature.

but i can do a lot of constructive things too.

and now, when i was flagging from my weekend high, i got the green to begin a project that i can only call serendipitous.

my culminating semester at school had a lot of grey area. i know i have to do a belly dance, but the rest was to be an exploration of sound, etc.

so now, i will propose (or have actually), proposed this massive editorial project to my professor to see if he will sign on to walk me through producing a bonafide anthology.

there is a lot i can do and learn in this endeavor. there is a lot i can screw up. but it is the kind of project i can commit to wholeheartedly and willingly, even though it will cost me everything, it is the kind of risk i will gladly give everything to take.

i am sorry i won't be getting my all time favorite professor for this next gig, but i need a rock solid poet with me on this. and if he agrees, i think he could lend a real critical eye to the project.

i'm looking forward again, and that's good.

the now sometimes bums me out.
but there is always some poet somewhere who needs an anthology or some editing.

and after wandering the aisles at the big journal extravaganza, which is an annual affair, everything in me says, go for broke.

broke it is.