Tuesday, December 28, 2010


so, i'm in a funk. how to shake out of it?

not sure. i think the start of residency will be good for me, it is, if nothing else, a diversion. strange i never thought my soul expression would be classed in the diversion category. but i'm full of questions. i got my ass kicked six ways from sunday last semester, and i'm just tired. not sleepy, but worn out. a bit of butter scraped across too much bread.

what to do? how to shake this funk?

maybe the benefit will be i'm actually receptive to people at the residency. though, it could go another way entirely, i could resort to hermitage amidst my fellows.

i don't know what tomorrow holds, but i know today, i have to ride this out.

all ends well.

how does it?

it's a mystery.

Friday, December 24, 2010

done again.

so my paper is done again. this time, for good. it's a relief, truly. i am refraining from handing it in until the requested date so i can read over it one more time and hopefully catch any issues, there shouldn't be any, i'm just being overly cautious for once in my life.

i'm in boston, loving it. it's snowy and i'm all toasty warm in the bed of the one i love. doesn't get much better than that.

now to edit a poetry book i've had on my plate since before the beginning of this semester. it is kind of tragic i didn't get to it back in the day, but everything happens for a reason, so i'm going with it.

i will be hanging up my freelance editor shingle again, in an effort to transition to my real life, from my day job status as editor. i do love editing. and while this paper has shown my many flaws, among them having pared the language down, mutilated it to a personal style which is unyielding (except after hours and hours of revision work...yes, i revised, even over-revised, never let it be said i don't go overboard when i go). i am now able to see how much i leave to the reader to intuit.

it's not a bad thing for a poet, it's awful for a prose writer. and many prose writers had to help me fill in the blanks by simply saying,
what the hell are you talking about?

and i would explain what i saw so clearly. but it was only clear to me. i understand this.

i'm not tired, for once, i feel quite good. excited about the work ahead and the beginning of my final semester in my mfa program now that i know i am passing this term.

what a load off.

so, to commence the work of editing, which is my natural and best work. perhaps friends would argue that point, but i don't see poetry as work, it is soul expression for me. that is entirely other than work. i don't know how to make a living at my soul expression, perhaps it will be revealed to me. but in the meantime, on to the work that inspires me. editing.

peace, have a wonderful holiday.

Monday, December 20, 2010

the last gasp

i swear this semester is neverending. even when it is supposed to have ended, i have yet another rewrite due. sigh. i must remember this is a blessing in disguise, the alternate could have been not passing, yet my prof was gracious and wants me to clarify just a few more things. at least she is no longer saying my argument has no merit, she is saying,
this is becoming a fine persuasive argument though i have concerns about some of the claims you make.

there are always going to be concerns about the claims i make. i'm uninclined to wait for verification.

and so many times she asks me to clarify things that i feel are plain and simply laid out, but they are not laid out plain and simple for anyone but me.

i'm trying not to be discouraged by this or a few of the other of today's occurrences though they have not resolved anything. i am just weary of things being drug out.

it will be well, i know it will. i'm trying to stay positive and focused on the near end of these seeming endless obstacles.

the end is in sight.

and all is well. i had a lovely weekend, one of the best i can remember. all i could feel was joy. i don't remember that ever EVER being the case.

and now, well, it's a tough act to follow.

but i believe it will be well. life is unfolding as it must and that which i need will come to me.

i believe this. i have always believed this.


Tuesday, December 14, 2010


well, it's done. i've printed it out, sealed it up and it will go in tomorrow's mail.

i'm fried.

i learned a lot this semester, mostly, about the virtue of not giving up. keep at it until they call the game. why quit when you can try just a little bit harder.

now, i don't know what to do because i'm so used to doing that (as wretched as it was).

first things first, i guess i'll clean my apartment, which looks like a bomb hit.

then, i'll go a visitin'.

Sunday, December 05, 2010

scenic routes

i realized the other day while driving the lovely way home (not the fast way, nor the economical way, but the lovely way), that i've finally found a bit of breathing room in my life again. a small space where i can sit for a minute at the library in my chair, it has been a very long time since i've been there in that chair for more than fifteen minutes. while i was being productive in my chair, it was nice to be there again. to remember back to what was, while so eagerly welcoming what is to come. remembrance is good. hope is better, and i'm feeling hopeful again. it's been a long time coming.

so i am driving down roads where the mountains could not be moved, i'm spending a lot of time with my daughter again because i'm not so exhausted i pass out as soon as i get home. i make her dinner when she arrives home from school, we talk about the day, then work on homework side by side. it's been lovely. feeling like me again. or doing things i remember once enjoying.

i should get back to it, i've had a little time this morning to unwind, but my everpresenttodolist beckons.

i will tend to it, freeing up my tomorrow to spend with my dear friend.

peace and may you remember to take the scenic route.

Friday, December 03, 2010

almost home

well, i talked it over with everyone. my daughter said,
don't quit mom.
so here i am, still plugging away. i've gutted my thesis and i'm restructuring the argument. it's a far better paper than it was. i had a lot of work to do, still do, but i'm halfway through this latest revision and i'm beginning to feel hopeful again. like time is not after me, but i do have a lot on my plate.

it seems i wanted a certain thing to be. that certain thing was not what i hoped it was. no surprise there. but i had to mourn the idea of the thing, before i could move into the new thing. it's how i am. i do everything by feeling and intuition. maybe not the best way, but i've still about twelve days before my paper is finally due, and i know i can do it. as i said, i'm feeling hopeful again.

when my mind starts to wander down the list, the seeming endless list of obligations and deadlines, i just pull out my clipboard and write those things down. i have crossed off a great many of late, but the list is by no means done.

there are a lot of changes in store, i can feel it. this paper, this process, this ordeal, has changed me. and that's okay. i need to improve, there's always room. i think i was most shocked that i needed a good solid kick in the ass to get me moving forward. i had worked so hard to get the paper to where i thought it was done, but it soooo was not. i see that now. the paper is infinitely better now and it's not even complete yet.

my girl is happy, i read my paper aloud last night, the first ten pages of it. and it was far better than before. my girl and i sat side by side working on her homework and mine. she needed help with ideas and my strange associative mind was the perfect thing to bat around these long convoluted scientific sentences. i swear i don't remember any of that from school. she had to keep explaining the concepts to me and i would look at her blankly,
lactic acid, what?
she would sigh, and repeat herself. she is infinitely patient with me. which helps.

i swear it was like listening to charlie brown's teacher. i could barely comprehend what she was saying. but i tried really hard to focus, and sometimes she had to repeat the sentence and the explanation three times for me to even get it. but i did. we figured it out. and so you don't think i'm a total ditz, let me just say, i was working on my thesis at the time, so at least the first time she said the sentence my brain was still otherwise engaged. no explanation for the last two repetitions other than, damn, eighth grade science is hard.

one of the things i've realized, is i've so brutalized, maimed the english language here, so firmly entrenched myself in this style of writing that is me, that i can't write a normal paper without much angst. first of all, forget writing an outline. that ain't happening. second, using full sentences and caps. damn. third, i leap around a lot intuitively. this space is mostly the prewriting for my poetry, so i don't really care what the words say, it's the poems that matter. the words help me muddle through the clutter, but then, the poems come and they are spot on.

committing yourself completely to a thing, an angle, a process, a way of doing something is good and bad in that it takes a great deal of effort, conscious effort to fit someone else's box. mostly i'm hanging out of the box, and bitching about the box, but i've got to get most of my shit in the box so i can pass. i understand this now.

i will most definitely have earned this damn degree when it comes time for me to graduate.

and i can see the flag announcing the last lap.

what a relief, this semester has sucked major cojones.

so, time to get back to it.

Wednesday, December 01, 2010


well, i've about decided what to do, that takes a lot of the pressure off. and whatever, it is what it is. i'm tired. sick to death of trying to make this thing live, but apparently it's crap. i have to come to terms with that.

though it's not crap from my vantage point, mind you, merely theirs. the thing is, it is their opinion that lets me move on. do i keep trying. why do i want this. what the hell am i doing.

sometimes i think i know. but mostly i hate this program and i wonder if i should just toss in the towel, except that i'm not a quitter and i'm half way through. what will the second half be like, i don't know. i can't possibly know.

apparently i've contorted the language so much, into my own style, that it is incoherent to others.

so be it. the troubling part is, i can do this editing work for other writers, but i can't make it happen for myself, is it because it's not meant to be, or because i am typical of all writers who cannot distance themselves from their own work.

dunno. i'm struggling though. what the hell am i doing and why.

is it worth it, this credential, to keep at this, to keep trying. why give up now.

so many big questions. i'm short on every answer.

all ends well.

how does it?

i don't know, it's a mystery.

Sunday, November 28, 2010

it's not a toyota, it's a car

i have come to understand the major issue of my paper to be this. i was making too many fine distinctions in a realm where i need to merely make an argument. i was sorting sand from grains of rice but that was not the task set before me. now, i have to figure out how to meet criteria i'm not entirely sure of and the only thing i can come up with is, go big. it's not in the minutia, it's in the broader scheme of things. i tend to focus in too closely. hell, i made keats and oliver talk about obe's. my argument was too pointed. i need to broaden the expanse without generalizing. what i've come to understand this to be is, i was making the distinction, it's a toyota camry. when all i really needed to say was it's a car. no one really cares that it's a camry. that's my nuance. they care only that i make a solid case for it being a car.

four wheels, an engine, headlights, gas pedal. = car.

i have spent the better part of the last four days mourning my paper as was. i think i'm ready to let it go, to launch it out into the proverbial sea in a bottle, in hopes of actually passing this semester. this program has always been wrong for me, i chose to stick it out because i want an mfa degree, for no reason other. they are not teaching me anything here that i will necessarily directly benefit from. because i'm not that kind of writer. i'm an entirely different species of writer.

what i need to do is get my style of writing, my method, or process, out there. perhaps it will help other artists. perhaps not, but it is what i am coming to understand. the degree is not the definition of anything other than a certain set of criteria. adhere to those standards, be gradable, then you can move on. you don't have to be brilliant, you don't even have to say anything original, just meet criteria.

i object to this approach with all my being, but i have a child to support. i want certain doors to open that i believe an mfa is the key to. first i must obtain the key. this path chose me in the way my life unfolds, so i have tried my best to reconcile it. to understand what exactly i'm supposed to take away from this experience aside from frustration. i'm still at a loss to answer that. the best thing has been the one solid connection i've made. i would do it all again for that because that is what matters to me. connection.

so, i have a week to try to say, it's a car not a camry in a way that is passable. i'm groping around blind here, but i think i've got it figured out. i didn't think it was supposed to be this way, that it would come to me grappling around in the dirt again saying,
i won't let you go until you bless me.

but here i am, arthritic hip, bent wings, very worn out. but still struggling for the blessing.

i have a child to support. i will do what it takes.

its also a car, i must remind myself of that. because while i believe with all my heart that the camry is first a camry, it is also always first a car.

i can do this.

i will do this.

i have a child to support.

Friday, November 26, 2010

out of my mind

i have walked away from it, the best i can. but it's always there, in the back of my mind. what i want, what i want to do. and i know i can't just give up. it's not my style. i don't know how to quit. i just keep swinging. i'm tired and frustrated is all.

my sweetie is on her way to me, and that's a wonderful thing. sometimes, alone is good. i forget how much i like to be alone, but now, i've got lots of alone time. i'm becoming my erratic, anti-social self again. by holing up, i lose my social graces, whatever remnants remain.

and i asked her,
you said i don't like to meet new people right

she said,
i mentioned how when i first met you, you got up and walked out of the room during our conversation.

she's now my best friend. the closest person to me at this particular point in my life. and i didn't give her the time of day until i was ready to open myself up to her. but then we bonded, and it's been fun.

she tells me that
master's programs are brutal.
that she told me this two years ago when i was starting this whole process. and i just have to say,
yeah, yeah,
because she's always right.

you have way more freedom than i did,
she says.

but these constraints, any constraints for that matter, feel like they will be the death of me. but i'm going to will myself through this. i am genuinely baffled though. maybe, when i turn to it again, today or tomorrow, i will understand what i've missed in a way i can address.

i want to move forward. i want to work on my creative work next semester, and i'm just afraid i won't. but i won't let that stop me. i acknowledge that fear and determine to do whatever it takes to pass. my conscience is such a damn bully though, i have to stay true to it. that's not a bad thing.

now how to fix this paper. how to remedy this situation.

i look forward to successful resolution.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

my best shot

the thing about it is, i've held true to myself this entire time. it's always been a problem. why should that change now? i don't know that any artist has it any easier, we get a vision, we pursue it. try to convey it to the world, and are met with misunderstanding at best. it's troubling, but that vision doesn't fade. through the years, if you pursue it, it will gain contour and form, become palpable and like a friend. one i cannot betray now.

so i'm resigning myself to what will be. i can let go of this damned degree if that is the case. i don't really care either way. i'm tired of this. i am just trying to do something with my life, but what does that mean. does it mean i've failed if i don't pass this semester. hardly. it means i haven't met a certain criteria, though i have worked as hard as ever to do so. i have not measured up. no surprise there. it is not their definition that matters to me. it is mine.

i guess the thing that sucks is that far lesser (and by even acknowledging that thought, my ego threatens to rage out of control) artists are able to do this, why can't i? why won't i? because that's what it comes down to. will i or won't i? am i consciously trying to fail, of course not. it's just how it is. i have never worked so hard on a thing to be told it was shit. but i understand, it is not my style, not my anything, it is just a criteria i have to meet. or no.

that's the thing. i am trying to figure out now, how to salvage this, and i just don't know. if you genuinely give something all you've got, your best shot and then are told you fucked it up, how do you fix that? how do you remedy your best (ill-conceived attempts though they may be, if it's my best work, it's my best work bottom line).

i just don't know. so i walk away from it for now and focus on the details that i must.
looking to my life to save me now. my deadlines and duties to distract me from this discouraging turn of events.

if it didn't matter so much i'd just let it go and say fuck it. but it's my work. my poetry here. and i have to keep trying. though, at the moment, i'm not exactly sure what that means. as i said, i gave it my best shot. what else is there?

Tuesday, November 23, 2010


well, my prof hates my paper. wonderful. where to go from here. i have to give it my best shot, and hope that is sufficient. i'm going to try to refrain from saying more than that because i am trying to be kind.

sometimes i wonder what this means, how can it be so off, so misconstrued. so confused. how can i miss the mark so completely.

what it feels like to me is this, i am a certain kind of writer, artist, poet. i am very color out of the lines. mix colors. play.

when i come into an academic arena, i want to meet criteria while also being true to myself.

at the moment, it feels very much like a pissing contest, and i hate those. so i will do my best to gut my paper of all offensive (to the academic mindset) stray coloring, and get this thing into the box the best i can.

will i succeed? i don't know. will i try my best, certainly. i've tried too hard for too long to let this one paper, this one professor stop me now.

it feels like it always feels, like it's personal. for me that's not a surprise because i am deeply invested in poetry. hell, it is who i am. i value nothing apart from it, and i regard nothing close to it. i have opinions, yes. but does that make them invalid because they are mine? i don't think so.

i always thought the purpose of education was to hone your voice. to be a truer you when you were done. to do your thing with panache.

now i'm finding, it's just about doing what your professor wants the way your professor wants it.

i never expected that this semester, particularly because of whom it is in question.

the bottom line is this, i'm being judged on personal criteria and hell, i bring it on myself. i am always putting myself out there. if i could stick to the strictures of prosody, if i could yammer on about how a poem means, i wouldn't be in this boat.

but i am in this boat.

i believe poetry is more than what the academics say. my bad for not being able to convey that convincingly yet, but not for lack of trying. if this is my last semester and my program ends here, so be it. but i will have done the best i could.

i genuinely thought i revised my paper to the best of my ability and was told i overrevised. HA how fucking hilarious is that. i'm not entirely sure what that means.

but i have one more stab at it, and won't go down without a fight.

i promise you that.

i don't just roll over, i don't know how.

the help i need is on the way.
i can do this, i will succeed. i know i can.

even if my professor doesn't agree.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

curiouser and curiouser

times they are a stranger. sometimes i forget myself who i am, where i'm headed, what i want. but i do know what i don't want, especially when it's staring me in the face.

sometimes i wish i could see what's down the road so i could plan. i plan as much as i can anyway, but i never know if my plans are actually going to come to fruition. i guess that is the story of every farmer. they plant, the tend, they wait, they harvest. my story is no different from any others, save that it is mine.

tonight i am leaning into the weekend, wishing it were here sooner than it will be, but knowing, it's better to be in the moment at hand than wish it away. even if it is uncomfortable or painful. there is nothing that happens without meaning.

so when i surprise myself, and behave in ways i wish i wouldn't. or when i'm surprised by the behavior of others who behave in ways i wish they didn't. i just have to cut everyone some slack and offer peace.

i want that more than anything.

i want to not be mistreated either. i won't accept it. i can't. i've worked too hard to change my life to accept poor treatment, and so, i will not.

it is strange, the past twenty four hours, but there was some purpose. something i will understand someday.

and perhaps it all unfolded as it should, though now i have to trust that is the case.

and soon, my love will be in my arms again, and i will be grateful.

Friday, November 19, 2010

finding time

i think i have approached this whole thing wrong. but there is always time to start again. and so today, i begin again. i will try to focus afresh and chart my course. no point wasting this downtime with fevered dreams. i've been tired but feel much better. my child is happy and that is all that i really can ask for. the rest is up to me. it always has been. what do i want to accomplish.

i've got a running list. some things have to be there. but i'm trying to remember the things i let fall along the way. the things that mattered to me but i haven't had time. mostly, i find that in friends. those who remind me of who i am. i have heard myself laugh more in the past year than i have in the past decade. i like that change. it bodes well for the future. laughter heals.

that's really the bottom line. i'm being restored.

it's not only about the physical state, its about all of it. i am just discovering lost parts of me. not sure i've ever really known who i am. i've never doubted i would find me, but i always thought it would take something else. not this. never this.

so i abandon myself to the process of living. and laughing.
i remember how to nurture those i love, and find, i miss it.

there will come a day when my real life, my work life, makes this nurturing possible.
that i can be a mom and an editor. that i can be a mom and a poet.

for now, i'm just learning to define what i truly want. what i need.
the language doesn't exist in some cases, so i go with a color of feeling.

and trust.

always trust.

in what,
she asked.

in goodness.

fear and worry breed scarcity,
i told her.
gratitude creates abundance and peace.

i had two dollars in my checking account the other night. i went to bed, grateful for that two dollars. certain it would be well. i chose to trust what i need will be there when i need it. in the frosty morning, i went to start my car to drive my girl to the bus stop and it would not turn over.
start walking,
i told her. she took off for the bus stop.

i got my car running and made it to the car place where i also got the oil change i was right on schedule for (my pony is immensely considerate to wait to break down until i have time and money to deal with it).

so, we're good. the money arrived. the car is fixed. the kiddo made it to the bus on time.

that is all i know. i'm grateful. immensely grateful for every unravelling mystery. for even the unresolved that i will never comprehend.

but i trust that which is mine will come to me.

the help i need is on the way.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

this time i mean it

i did what i could and had a friend look at my paper, it needed help. so i worked it over. this morning, the day before my deadline i turned in my packet because i'm sick of looking at it. i haven't failed yet. and this pleases me.

i'm not sure what's next. i'm just checking things off, trying to get done what needs to be done by the next deadline. i genuinely have so many it's hard to keep them all straight. there was so much i wanted to accomplish, but mostly, just not failing is enough.

the rest is gravy.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

in the curious way

of my life, i have completed, at last, the critical thesis. i have dotted the final i and crossed the final t. i hope to get signed off and move on with my life. though i have one more packet to pull up if i've nosedived and am delusional.

it's been a strange week. i'm not sure i understand what is happening, in me, out of me, beside me, around me. but i don't need to understand. i am just grateful for friends who love me and make time to help me heal. i have not been a very good friend in this season, but i simply cannot manage more than my daughter, myself, and my school at this moment. i want to, but i can't. don't have it to give, and what i've got, i'm pouring out on my child.

she seems happy enough. i love seeing her sleep, so sweet. so innocent. i'm grateful to have her here beside me, fully aware of who i am. fully engaged in our life together.

i do not know what tomorrow holds, but today, the sun is shining, my paper is finished, and i will make a cup of tea and go sit on the porch. it's all good. every last bit of it.

Friday, November 12, 2010

what the

i'm not sure what i'm doing right now. hoping it all comes together, that the ends actually meet and i can move forward. i have been practicing gratitude lately. i am genuinely grateful for all that has transpired thus far. i welcome more goodness, more love, more trust, more faith into my life. but i'm not entirely sure i know what that means. will it be in ways i expect from the people i love. not necessarily. so, aptly, my daily horoscope reminds me of the buddhist principal of non-attachment, non-aversion. i'm not very good at maintaining that line, but i am trying. sometimes, i can. mostly, i lean more toward aversion. though my friends would say i lean more toward attachment.

it's a curious time when i'm home a lot. i'm supposed to be off my foot, and i am. but that means, what's left.

i guess i should go have breakfast with my friend today, i'm feeling a little caged.

i hate that feeling. everyone who knows me knows it leads to nowhere good for me.

so, i must get out. go sit somewhere other than here.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010


i've spent a lot of time, recently in my alpha state. there is a lot going on creatively, the major thing now is my critical thesis. which i can barely stomach rereading at this point but have to. i hacked off the intro yesterday and will begin trying to reformulate something. i'm waiting at the mall for an apple appointment so i can get my itouch to stop playing bad brains incessantly. i like them, but damn. i've got hundreds of albums on there, must i hear them every five minutes. i could just delete them, but i'd like a tutorial in this rather than trying to struggle with it. asking experts or in this case, geniuses is a much better idea for me who is lacking in both time and patience.

so, i have my thesis with me. i will take another stab at it today, and likely hack it to further bits. the scene is quite macabre.

meeting with my best friend today. that will be a nice change. i've spent most days home alone. my cats, most emphatically don't like metallica or blue october. no accounting for taste, that's all i got to say. but the thing is, my lady gave me a speaker dock for my ipod and the kitties have been skittish ever since. it took one day and a cat sitting in the window actually meowing in agony for me to connect the dots. come on, lars ain't that bad. bunny has adjusted, but this is, arguably, the first time the cats have actually heard my music.

on the cat front, all have been fixed or adopted out, and i have only three in my care now. much, much better than eight. i came home one day and there was a bunny, two teenage girls, and ten cats (four of them kittens) milling about my apartment porch. it looked like a scene from some bad movie. but all is well. we are moving on, moving forward. not reproducing.

so i am waiting for hot topic to open because last night i bought everything for myself one size too small. i can squeeze in, but i'd rather have breathing room.

then off to orange county for a day of hanging out with my bestie.

i must face my pages at some point. will do that when we're at her appointment and i stay in the car with nothing else to do. i must be forced to attend to my pages. sadly.

but it is progressing. i have the requisite pages and could conceivably hand it in, but i want this paper to rock. that's my problem. i want it to convey my meaning. not just meet a requirement. at the moment, it does not. i have a way to go yet.

but all ends well.

how does it?

i don't know. it's a mystery.

Sunday, November 07, 2010

look me in the eye

it's about ten minutes before our reading, i'm here. not really feeling it because my mind is on other things. are these distractions, not necessarily. they simply are.

my friends cannot come because that is how it works in my life, the people i love do not generally hear me read though the exciting part about this is, my girl is here with me. she has never seen nor heard me read except her lifelong private reading which have taken place in california, arizona, texas, new york, anywhere we happen to find ourselves. it's something to have her here with me.

and so i move forward in my life, it is all i know how to do. to get through a day. to open myself to wonder. and to hold myself open.

i forgot to publicize this reading because my heart and mind have been elsewhere,
are these distractions, not necessarily.

Thursday, November 04, 2010


the gods decided i needed a rest, and so i have one. unexpected, and i'm grateful. spent the day curled up beside one of my foundling cats and slept the rain away. there is a second of the eight souls i am now accountable for in my own mind, beside me purring away. i don't know how i became foster mother to these but they are here. i am at their disposal. three of them got fixed this week, and what a ride that was. two am, one is dangling from the miniblinds, and i'm hollering at it,
stop that.
like cats listen. the other two were up to mischief of their own, but very little topped the miniblind acrobatics. around four am, about twenty two hours post surgery, i booted them all out, bellies full into the wild. that is their actual home. momma impatient's home for foundling cats was closed. but too soon my child awoke and the day carried me away with it.

i went to the laundromat, then made my way to the doctor where the prognosis was not so good.
it may take weeks for this to heal
she said.

so what do i do?

i can't tell you what you can do, i can only tell you what you can't.

now, i'm in a window of found time and going to try to make the best of it. my foot needs to heal, but most of my work is mental. compiling lots of notes, finalizing my paper for this next packet, due the day of my next doctor's appointment.

i'm grateful for the rest. i'm exceptionally tired.

now to figure out what to do first, or after that pile of dishes i've been ignoring.

away to boston this weekend, and then home for a poetry reading. i've got fifteen minutes or so. i will likely read for ten. i'm pretty much over myself as a reader. i enjoy it. it always goes well. but i'm ready to get on with my life and become.

so much to do, i need to pace myself. and if today is any indication, all is well. all is very, very well.

my baby will be home soon, and that is a wonderful thing.

peace kids
may joy light upon you.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

i miss you

it's an odd feeling, not having time to write. some part of me feels denied, lost. but i genuinely have no time at the moment. and i know i'm not supposed to be saying that, that if i say, i have all the time in the world, suddenly i will. but that just isn't the case. i'm just swamped.

but it will be well.

i keep trying to navigate the quagmire, and sometimes, somedays, it feels decent. like i can do this. like my life is not living me. i'm grateful for those days.

the past two days at work have been hellacious. i'm not sure why, or how, or what exactly is going on, but a lesser bobka will not do. i am glad to have held up on my own and found my footing. i've grown lazy in my new store, and sometimes i'm grateful for the respite, but mostly, i miss busy. i would rather be racing the entire time i'm at work than standing around. any day.

so, the girls are out by the fire. we roasted ginormous marshmallows, they are so delish because while the outside gets charred nicely when flambed, the inside stays mushy soft. so there is a more even balance of the black carbon coating to soft white near gelatinous sugary substance. two thumbs up.

this is why i'm not writing, it all just sounds idiotic. like bullshit.

i'm in a semester where i have to do something that isn't necessarily my thing. it isn't not my thing, but i have to try to do things properly. and, well, you know how that goes.

so i am just going to do what i have to do to graduate.

that means, focus and get through this semester. it's all i can do.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

haven't failed yet

i told her
i usually stare at the ceiling for a day or two grateful that i haven't failed yet,
after a packet is turned in. this time, i have nothing but deadlines. everywhere i turn, someone needs something else, and these aren't the kind of deadlines one simply ignores, believe me, i would if i could. i can't.

so i turned in my packet, for better or worse. i will be humble, submissive, grateful, and brief. i will revise. and get help when i'm ready to shoot myself.

it's worked out.

my daughter makes me laugh. i'm grateful our relationship continues to improve. i wish i could say the same for so many others in her life.

that's all. the good news. i'm focused on that.

i haven't failed yet. :)

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

just three stinking pages

i have just printed out my rough draft of my paper. i've got twenty eight pages. i need three more pages to be safe. i'm getting there. i will soon go through it, and elaborate on what i can. hoping it makes sense. that i have some logical thread, that my prof can actually see what i'm doing and not have to guess.

i am so fried, but this will get done and then i will clean my apartment which has, in true mfa student fashion, hit the skids.

i'm going to make this deadline, i've got a lot of work to do on the paper, but it is coming together and i'm excited. it is nearer now to what i hoped it would be than ever before. let's hope i can dial it in and tighten it up in the next two revisions.

i'm kind of like a zombie with all these deadlines, but it's okay. the work is getting done and i'm leaning in letting momentum carry me.

my schedule shifts this week from all closes of last week, to all opens/mids. i am discovering this alternating sleep schedule is very rough on me. but it will be well. i will survive this, and thrive.

but for now. i need to veg. to rest. to give my mind a break before the nitty gritty of revising the rough begins. my deadline is tomorrow and i'm only three pages away.

Monday, October 18, 2010

flashes of things to come

i'm still doing it, editing myself. not pushing publish. so not like me, but i have reasons. and i am too tired to deal with much at the moment, so while i am still writing, i'm not posting. this is not a bad way for me to be.

i try not to look down my list too far beyond the very next thing because it gets overwhelming. and the tendency is to panic. i refuse to panic. i keep trusting it will work out as it is supposed to. i trust. bottom line.

do i understand any more than i did last week, or even last year, no, but i don't really need to. i'm really going with the flow in so many areas, and now i'm just conscious of it. which is a good and bad thing.

i took my girl to the salon recently, and she looks like a young lady. my best friend has been telling me for some time that she's blossomed but i never noticed it until she got her hair done. now, my baby is gone. all traces of child, save the dirty hand prints on the wall, are gone. she's a young lady. a beautiful young lady now.

and the good news is, i saw it. completion of this season of my life, the doorway to the next phase. and it was good.

i was told by a prophetic type dejavu is a sign that you're on the right path. headed in the right direction.

while i do get that a lot, i also get flashes of what's to come. a preview of coming attractions if you will. i have decided to share that with my besties because when it happens i want someone else besides me to know that i knew.

i need to listen to myself more and trust that knowing. it's hard to do sometimes. everything looks contrary, but i know there is a lot going on behind the curtain and soon, very soon, the best act of this particular play begins.

i can't wait. it's like a long intermission and there's a line in the ladies room. it's fine, necessary. the break is needed. but it is the moment between scenes. the action has subsided on stage in a sense. but that's my point, it really hasn't. everything is happening for the big finale. when the lovers unite. the battle is won. the standing ovation occurs.

and i can't wait.

Wednesday, October 06, 2010


i think i've been asleep for days, between working jags and obligation. i've had little energy to check things off my list. but i'm trying. the sad news is, one of the kittens killed a bird. a golden finch, a female, from what i can tell, dressed in drab yellows. cheese puff, the playful, is still toying with the kill, carrying it around and i can't help but feel awful. perhaps leaving the kittens (soon to be cats) here is unfair. perhaps luring the finches with seed is also unfair. perhaps what we do when we try to help is only make things worse. i don't know. i don't have any answers.

but i am beginning to work on my thesis again and i come across this quote which stops me cold and demands i pay it homage before proceeding.

the creative person in a sense does something for all of us simply by being, and perhaps we help ourselves when we help such persons in the process of their own creative unfolding.
frank barron, 1969

as much as i believe this, it feels selfish to me. perhaps because it gives me some license to creativity. but, it makes me feel responsible to others in some way for my creativity and the use i make of it. i'm not sure which is right, if we are gifted with talent and do the best we can, or if we serve with our talents, again, doing the best we can. perhaps both are true at the same time.

i think of the burgeoning weight of responsibility i feel at the moment, and try not to let my shoulders slump, but keep leaning in to the weight, certain the help i need is on the way. i can do this, it is possible for me to succeed. i must, first, believe in myself.

had a brief discussion about vulnerability with a writer i love, and what it comes down to for me is, that i write on the edge of immense vulnerability. that i live in that place. which is why i fight so fiercely to protect it.

it may look like i'm fighting just for fighting's sake. but i'm not. i don't have an ounce of interest in warfare. i am keenly interested in creativity. in pursuing my bliss. in making the sound i am capable of making in the clearest possible way. is that always easy? is it always pretty? absolutely not.

anyone flailing on the edge of vulnerability knows it costs a lot, an awful lot to remain there. to write from that place.

i trust that i will make my sound and it will be heard.

i will succeed in this because it is what i am meant to do in this moment. even if now it looks like a man of straw, it will quicken. and live.

soon enough.

Monday, October 04, 2010

sleep, sleep well

i'm just home. a million things to do, but the million things will have to wait. i need a nap.

i am trying not to psych myself out by the size of the tasks at hand, just trying to cross one off every chance i get. so far, it's working. but i'm tired.

it has gotten cold, and i will curl up in a ball like a kitten and sleep.

opening my store tomorrow, and having to juggle paying peter and paul, but it is well. we will make it. the universe is abundant.

but first, a nap.

Thursday, September 30, 2010


so i've roughly patched together about ninety percent of my paper. it is not the prettiest thing i've ever created, but it's mine. the arguments need to be strengthened, the flow eased, the poetry evaluated. there are two poems on my plate right now and while i was told to do certain things with them, i have to approach things my way. i don't know how else to function.

i genuinely wish i could adopt the tack of others. that i could write the way they do, produce what others would or seem to be wanting to read. but it seems to me we are in a master's program to demonstrate mastery of something. if i don't take this opportunity now to articulate my theory, my own process, when will i ever have the chance again. i know that sounds overly dramatic but it is my genuine question, the one i came into the semester lamenting when i was going to forego my paper for the internship. but then, got the opportunity to focus on the paper again. there is a plan. a higher purpose. do i know it, can i see it, no. i'm still stumbling along as through a fog. but i do believe.

my best friend tells me i am fighting unnecessarily. but for me, i don't know how to give ground on this. my opinion on creative matters is all i have. and it keeps coming back to me, that i have mastered this process by which i write, and so i need to articulate it. or at least try.

meanwhile, the drama of court continues and i try to focus whatever i can on getting it done. mostly, i'm at the carrying blank papers around and trying not to think about it stage, but that luxury will soon come to an end. for me, this court deadline is not as pressing as articulating something creative on the page. my whole semester depends on it. and when it's time to write, like now, i must let everything else ride.

am i gambling, taking chances unnecessarily. yes and no. i gamble as part of my process. i trust my way through my writing. it is always a gamble. i always come to a paper deadline and say,
this may be the time my process fails me.
but after seventeen years of this process, i am gaining confidence in it. i trust it. it has not let me down. was this last performance stellar, no. absolutely not. but i did accomplish something. i sorted through a lot of peripheral issues and got down to the meat of my paper. that is what counts. will that reflect in my grading, well, we are not traditionally graded. and i am, in some ways, expecting some heat from this, but i will trust that it will be well. that my paper, my semester, my program will work out.

i have had to find the right balance of rest, play, work, writing, reading, and creative indolence. i can force my mind through so many things, but then i'm just demanding it perform. it becomes the mouse on the wheel, the donkey tethered to the grindstone. so, i've been experimenting with silence again. letting my mind breathe as i have been suffocating in the ideas of others.

do i want to fight, to battle my way through things. no, of course not. i wish i were easy, that i could be a joy to my professors and the people in my life. but mostly, i am just me. i trust it will be well. that which needs to happen, does. i believe this.

i also know that which is mine will come to me. it always has, it always will.

now, to hook this frankenthesis up to a lightening rod and flip the switch. that is where i'm at.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010


i try not to say it,
i'm tired.
because then it seems to drain me more of what little i may have at the moment.

so, i won't say it. i'll just press on.

got my packet back. she says things about my beautiful mind. i understand what i did, the angle i am taking is not expected. but that is who i am. i have to risk it. or i would not be me.

i have much yet to do. many personal obligations and such but that is not an excuse. i am not making excuses. we are in this process to learn, to grow, to challenge ourselves.

do i know how my process will bring this all together? no. i never know. but i trust it. that is all i have. trust.

in the face of some serious questions, i have only trust.

do i wish i could write like other writers, of course. at times, when charting progress and making headway are tangible ideals. but mostly, i have to just abandon myself to my best effort. to try. if i blow it, i blow it. so be it.

it will not be lack of trying that stops me. i will do this.

the acceptability factor is always a question. one i cannot answer now. nor need i ponder long, since, i am not the one who decides what is to be and what isn't.

i know only what is.

Monday, September 27, 2010


i will be the first to tell you i'm a hopeless romantic. that i believe love can conquer anything. vanquish any foe.

yet i have just come to understand that i have been wrong.

the gravity of this revelation is what stuns me now. how i held out for love, hoped in it, wished for it, trusted it.

but it is not meant to be so. there are some things love simply cannot remedy.

hell, i know this first hand, i'm in the middle of a messy divorce. i'm struggling to keep my head above water. why would i even dare dream of love now?

because i'm a fool and always have been.

my daughter said to me today,
text her and ask.

no. i can't.
i told her, and i tried to tell her why, but resorted to,
i'm mad at her.

though i'm not.

no, i love her,
doesn't make any sense. i can't explain the foolishness of it.

so i have said, as i will say,
i love her and wish her well.

for me this is not about right and wrong. good or bad. it is simply what is. and what is not meant to be.

i am a fool, i understand this. but even a fool knows when it's time to leave.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

censor me

one of the things i don't do well is censor myself. lately, i have been deleting more than i've been posting. that's not me and i think the problem is i'm thinking too much. about how it will sound, how it will look, better if i just don't contemplate any of that and do what i do. it has gotten me this far, not tending to the who's of it all. but lately, i've turned my attention to things that are not naturally my domain. this is problematic.

stop thinking about what i think, and what she'll say.
she said.

and she's right. i just have to write. like i've always done.

i am not the kind of writer that thrives on attention. better to tunnel my own path through the underbrush and end up where i will than announce myself.

a friend said to me last night,
come back on land pisces

because i was wafting away in the current of emotion.

try to say it, in even tones, without emotion
she counseled me

in many ways, it's easier for me to attempt to fly. and so i come here, uncertain in all areas and say again, i have no idea what or how this means or ends, but i'm still at it. still giving it my best shot. and hoping, believing, trusting, it will be well.

that which i need will come to me.

i believe this.

Friday, September 17, 2010


i hadn't intented to miss her so fiercely. she'd be gone, then come back, i'd be skipping along in my life. she'd be impressed at my ability to handle absence. but it was not to be so. i had, arguably, the worst day i've had in a long time. granted, i'm an emotional person, but this was rough. there are so many things pulling on me now, so many details to sort out, and miss none, that sometimes, it gets hard to remember why i'm doing what i'm doing. how it's possible. because mostly it's not. and i finally said to her,
everything i believe is bullshit.

and i could not be convinced otherwise.

but i've emerged from the depths of that place, and am finding that while things are still bad. there is hope. there is always hope. i wish i could, like thich nhat hahn advises, kill hope. but i can't. so i don't try anymore.

the thing about it is, we are guided. what we need arrives just in time.

and it is this hope, that i cling to now.

i have a packet to write, and mostly, i'm lost in the words swirling around in my head from so many books.
stop reading,
she says,
and write.

and so i will. i will do that now.

i just hadn't expected to miss her so.

Friday, September 10, 2010

working out

i'm not sure how it's going to come together, but i am trusting that it will. my love is on a plane as i write, and i am doing laundry, being the domestic goddess i pretend to be on occasion.

i didn't have money for back to school clothes for my kid. i wasn't sure how to make it happen, so i kept waiting. i kept asking for her patience. we acquired the had to have stuff, but she needed more. i didn't want her to feel uncomfortable, and fortunately, her dad arrived and bought her new converse, a back pack, the real noticeable stuff. plus, the real expensive stuff. and i just kept asking her to wait.

so, slowly, bit by bit, as my grams would say,
poquito por poquito,
we acquired enough to get her started.

yesterday, we hit the motherload. hot topic is having a killer sale. i'm so grateful.

she looks so cute, she's found her style. we wear the same clothes and shop at the same store. which i find comical. i refuse to let her buy concert shirts for bands she doesn't know, so it's kind of a music appreciation lesson at the same time. what can i say, ever the homeschooler.

so, she is safely tucked in bed after staying up all night (until probably six this morning), and i am going to try to finish up the stuff distracting me, and hopefully get my car back in time to ride gloriously in to work. otherwise, i'm hoofing it to the train and walking home after midnight. such is life.

it's gotten marvelously chilly. i'm grateful for the weather change.

there is so much yet to do. i'm not sure how it will all come together but i trust that it will.

these trials make us stronger.

and i enfold her in my wings, and she rests safely now, and we have a home of our own.

she looked at me with a giant smile yesterday all dressed up with her pleated black elizabeth tripp skirt complete with handcuffs, her thigh high socks and mary janes, with her social distortion shirt, and she said,
i've finally become you, and that's not such a bad thing.

your dad is going to flip when he sees you,
i keep telling her.

she just smiles.

i keep meaning to get the last of what she needs to dye her hair purple. but it is not at the top of my priority list. mostly because it will be messy. i'm a cool mom in some respects, but i can't imagine what a mess that will make.

Thursday, September 09, 2010

delightful mess

today my horoscope said i was lucky, that my pollyanna attitude is what will get me through but with jupiter in pisces for the remainder of the year i'm good to go in that department, i've got luck on my side.

appears so.

there were so many collusions of fate today, so many blessed obstacles, it's hard to even comprehend them. yet, i am home, safe and warm with a very happy child in the next room.

everything i love is safe at the moment. that is all that matters. i remind myself of this often.

for i understood today, that even with all the challenges, the creative financing of my life, the need for providence to actually kick in and grace to suspend my credit a bit further, that even with all those potential dead zones, i am still grateful to be here in my life today. and that is saying something.

she's reminded me of so many things i've forgotten. we've talked a lot about our pasts, as writers are inclined to do, being read these things come up. and she's reading me. poor thing, she said,
every time i see you, you give me a new book.
and it's true. i had forgotten how many manuscripts i've accumulated over the years. so she is wading through my words. slowly.

i can't blame her, there are other writers in her life. not just me, but she said tonight,
we like each other's writing.
and i said,
yes, that helps.

i devour what she writes, because it is compelling. damn good. i say. and i don't say that lightly.

i'm going to go to bed and believe it will all be well, because i trust, and know it will be. every single bit of it is conspiring toward goodness for me.

and i told her,
i am waiting for you in october.

but the truth is,
she is also waiting for me.

i will turn in my packets on time and surpass expectation, because that is what i do.

i'm grateful, for all of it. even the challenges. they help us grow.

it's not going to be easy,
she said to me once.

it's not about ease,
i replied,
it's about growth.

and i still believe that.

Tuesday, September 07, 2010

take no note of him

my back aches. i'm trying to concentrate, to focus on my work at last. i've paid the bills, done the laundry, made dinner, received my child home and signed the requisite first week of school forms, i've ensured no check will bounce this week, and now i'm finally in a chair, with my computer attempting to focus.

but my back feels like i've got a knot in it.

i'm going over my professors words trying to ingest them, so many words. more books. i've ordered them, requested them, and they will arrive, and add to the mounting piles all around me. it feels like i just shuffle and reshuffle books, finding no rhyme or rhythm to the dance. it's all thumbs jutting out and erratic movement. so much for style.

meanwhile, there is much to do, endless details to keep track of, life details. and i wonder how i did it every semester before now (i've been in school with only one semester break for the past three years now. i'm getting tired).

it feels like it will never end. and i try to remember, i'm halfway through my master's program. don't fail now. don't fall down on the course now. keep getting up if you do fall down. keep trying. because that's the best i can do. keep trying.

it occurred to me last week that if i give up on myself, all is lost. if i stop believing i can do this, if i stop challenging myself and demanding i perform, i will. i've accomplished much of late, but there is much yet to do.

i try not to look down the road, looking back is little consolation. i just have to do the task at hand. accomplish something.

and when my back starts roaring, or my arms throbbing, i rest them. take a nap. my feet have been pounding, and i have to get more shoes. always more shoes.

but that's okay. i need to take care of myself. if i don't who will.

so, when my back demands i take a break, i try to ignore it at first, then yield.

perhaps it's right. i do need to stop now and again, and just rest.

there is just so much to do.

yet, i know i can accomplish only one thing at a time. this moment, my back takes precedence.

Saturday, September 04, 2010

balancing acts

while i have a judgment in my favor, that is all i have. the juggling continues. today wasn't so bad. last night i had trouble reeling my mind back in when it would veer off into unseemly terrain. but then, i was reminded of the park.

the park represents a lot of things in my life. first of all, i had no phone with me, which was nice. i looked at them and said,
you're with me, and you're with me. i don't need my phone.
i left the phone at home. that felt really good.

then, when it turned out i could have used my phone as my child went wandering off, i had them exchange numbers, which also felt very good.

we sat on a bench and talked. looked at the swans and ducks, the geese and pigeons. a very normal day for me. the kind of day i love to spend admiring beauty of all kinds.

we sat there for a while, and then drove home. we retrieved the chairs from the part of the yard that was shady in the morning, because the shade had shifted to the porch. so we sat on the porch and talked.

even when we didn't talk, it was good to just be there. to be silent together. which is how we spend some time.

i came home and it all rushed back in on me, my life.

i've decided, i have to focus. to force myself to accomplish this semester as i have all the previous semesters. no one can make me do it except me. and while i have no intention of blowing it, i have a lot of things coming out of the woodwork and distracting me. focus is essential when i can muster it. before it was late at night.

here, not so much. and early mornings the kittens are so cute and distracty. the finches catch my eye. it's all so lovely. that it seems i'm going to have to go away from here and study. my life is herky jerky with demands, and i'm having a hard time balancing.

but i will, because i must.

i must finish this semester and write a banging paper.

i must make ends meet a few more months as relief has been stymied somewhat by his refusal to pay.

i must scrape by just a little longer, because the floodgates of abundance are opening to me, and i will soon need more friends to give the excess to.

i must believe. continue to believe that i can do this.

and i'm grateful she's there to remind me.

Thursday, September 02, 2010

let me stay here awhile

there is something to be said for knowing how to leave. i do it well. i can feel when a time has ended (or at least when i'm through). everything in me flatlines and i look to the horizon. i move on. but usually the disengagement has begun sometime before, in this case, a year plus before.

the buddhists say,
once the decision is made there is no struggle.

i have found that always to be so. i labored over that decision, put off making it for a year, an entire year. until, at last, i could not bear it any longer. by then, i was done. everything had gone dry. there was no unused reserve to draw upon. it was time, some would say (in fact, many have, past time). and so, when the time came it was effortless. leaving for me, usually is. aside from all the practical bullshit. the actual dismantling of lives together. that is effortless for no one, i'm convinced.

what i want to learn now, is how to stay. to settle in. to engage in the lives of those around me with no intention of leaving. like i do with my child. i will not be parted from that one, even if miles separate us some day. i will be in her life. regardless.

but i'm speaking here of a quality of engagement i've not acquired in my life.

driving around her neighborhood with her mom, they pointed out where she grew up. basically the same town. i have never known anything like that. i've been a nomad my entire life. perhaps this is my nature, my ancestry. but i don't think so.

i'm pueblo. village dwellers. adobe and such. cultivators.

i'm stumped by it, really. i guess, being that up until 1998, i averaged a home every two years, it might be more than just my will at play here. i was not the decision maker in most, if not all of those instances of moving, though i did move a few times of my own accord when i was a teen and going to college. i jumped ship on my ex a while ago, and now have lived in two different places.

my heart still aches for roots.

my neighbor, whom i love, said to me recently,
you come and go. staying largely apart from the dramas that go on here.
and i do, it is how i live, on the move. but she said,
i have to be here.
i understand that. or want to.

mind you, i've never been happier. never experienced more joy, more freedom than now. the thing about it is, i want to experience it with those i love. but what does that mean. my family is on the west coast. i cannot live there, they irriate me (and likely, i them). so, the world is my orphanage, i am free to roam and call wherever i choose, my home. the only thing is, i have this little girl, this fellow wanderer beside me. i don't want to disrupt her life, (though i already have) the way mine was disrupted. though this past weekend when we were laughing and enjoying ourselves and our host, it felt good.

she has you, that's all that matters,
i'm told.

it would seem selfish of me not to consider the ramifications of relocation on her, but at the same time, i can't not move forward because my little one has friends at school. though i hate for her to lose connection, life happens. that cannot be avoided. in fact, sometimes the good must be sacrificed for the best.

she's starting high school next year and i hope to be somewhere she can do all four years without disruption. that's not too much to ask, is it? to see her through an entire run of one school?

i tell her,
sometimes a fresh start isn't so bad. it's helpful. you can be anyone you want.

and you can. i understand this, i have done it my entire life.

but there is never that certainty of knowing a place. a land. a home.

that, i would not know.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

are you done?

we used to visit every day, but not so anymore. my best friend and i have largely parted ways, and for this, i can only look back in gratitude and appreciate who she is. used to be i'd fall apart and she'd watch me melt into tears then say,
are you done? can we go have fun now?
and we would. she wouldn't hold anything against me and i love her for that.

i got a lot accomplished today, but there are still about a million things on my list. the unwieldy list i try to wrangle into some semblance of order on occasion but mostly, just try not to let the urgent run the show. though it felt a bit like that today. though i have some ideas sometimes and they prove to be so wonderfully right i cannot help but giggle.

much of what happened today was the product of synchronicity and a gleefully conspiring universe. for that i am grateful.

tomorrow is a day off and i've pledged it to my employer, so we'll see if i can get out early and knock off some of the last things on my absolutely must do soon section. not to be confused with, you better not forget to do this asap (hear: you're racking up fines at the library dork).

i just decluttered my livingroom floor, which is a mental load off. now if the legal bits would come together i'd be set. i think they are. synchronicity. there's something to be said for it.

i'm tired, not wanting to push it too far, but not wanting to let up before the burst of creative get it done energy has passed. though my lower back is saying,
it's passed. it's passed.

time to hit the hay.

nighty night.

my lady, my love

spent the most delightful weekend in boston, then came crashing back into my life. as i sat there, crying, from the surprise (yet again, i am surprised by being surprised) of another twist in the suzanne gets a divorce drama, she kept saying,
it's just a small setback, you'll get through it.
and i just had to completely freak out for a while. she let me, i'm grateful.

sometimes i can't see. i am no visionary. i am all trembling mass of quivering doubt.

but today, the fog subsided somewhat. i have found a book she asked me about, the thing is, we talk on the phone every day. we spent the entire day sunday together, just talking. not searching for things to say, but just talking. comfortably. enjoyably. together in the breeze of her yard. enjoying companionship.

it's hard to come home and stammer through my life, and i just got back.

though, i walked into my store, fresh from the return trip from boston and everyone greeted me with a smile. they all knew i was at my wits end and needed a break. so they conspired to give me one. i was, and am, so grateful.

i don't want my boss' job. i don't know how she does it. how she deals with all the bullshit. i don't think i could do that job very effectively for very long. a week seemed too long for me and i only had a fraction of her headaches. a fraction.

but i'm being drawn and quartered emotionally with the ex. trying not to let that happen, but sometimes, i realize there goes an arm, there goes a leg, and it's gone before i realize what has happened.

it's not so much him that is doing it to me. it's me. i get mentally strungout and have a hard time finding the separated limbs and reattaching them.

but i won't be stumped for long. that is one of my feline abilities.

and so i dug out a book that i had long forgotten. she and i talk about everything, and in the process, so many old lines of poems i wrote ages ago come out, and there are still more books, more collections.

every time i see you you give me a new book,
she says. and it's true. i do. it's something to have someone quoting my work to me. i have also realized i have not compiled anything since i started this mfa program, and it's high time i do that.

but now. i need to read. to focus on my
poetry manifesto
as my mentor has dubbed it.

and so it shall be.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010


i'm not sure what makes things happen. how one is freed to move from point a to point b, but i'm ready. i'm so ready to be where my dreams are calling me, i can hardly stand the now. but that's not the point. projecting into a future unknown, to the discontent of the now is not the point. so i must wait. be here. be patient. try to engage again. though i'm over it, so over it all i can hardly breathe.

i can hear it in your voice, how frustrated you are.

and it makes me slightly nervous that i will get reckless as i'm inclined to do. that i will leap before time.

but is there ever a time when it is too soon to leap?

sometimes, i feel the master of my course. completely in control. at the moment, i understand that there is also a timetable at play. i have understood this concept before, but right now, on the cusp of so much good, it is hard to resign myself to patience. to embrace the moment.

but i must.



be here.

there is something for me yet to learn or i would have moved on. i understand this.

and so, trying not to pace the cage, as i'm inclined to do, i'm trying just to let time unfold surprises and say yes to good things.

there are many coming my way. i am willing to receive them now.

goodness come to me, you're a long awaited guest.


there is some relief, i will admit, to getting a packet out of my hands and into my mentor's. there is this, i haven't failed out yet feeling that i guess is just old habits of thought. i feel it less now than before. something about this semester, i thought i would have less control, be at somebody's mercy (that is what i dread), but it's not so. so i'm writing what i want and it feels good. unsafe. wild. risky. but good.

i'm grateful to be able to do this.

i asked a beautiful african goddess how we write about those things we are not supposed to discuss.

you have to enter into the middle of them,
she said,
and own them.

yes. i understand.

she challenged me immensely. we have since lost touch, but being in touch is very limiting at times. it fosters this false sense of familiarity. sometimes people are supposed to be lightning flashes in a life, and they are lovely to behold, but you cannot hold to a flash of lightening.

so i let her go. as i will let everyone else go.

letting go is all i seem to understand. it surprises me still when someone stays. i'm grateful for it. i welcome the comfort of it. as i lay entangled with my lover, our bodies perfectly locked together, listening to her heart beat, i couldn't help but breathe a sigh of relief.

it is so good. all of it.

and today, i'm off work. i have a list as long as my arm to accomplish. but i will let it go for now. and sit here, watching the rain fall, listening to bunny chew. seeing kitties scramble in and out of the rain.

and know it will all get done someday.

but not today.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

reach out

i've been writing, it is gaining momentum, which is how it happens with writing i guess. for being a writer, i profess no expertise, the muse is mysterious. distrust anyone who says they understand it. i certainly respect it, but i do not understand it.

so, here we go again, putting myself out there on the page. trying to fashion words in phrases that stand up to critical evaluation. i do love this part. i can be a werd nerd and make a case. but i also love convincing people of my point. not so much that they have to agree, but that they see the merits of my case. my case has many merits.

trying to unveil what exactly i am getting at, circling in on the prey, is where it's at for me at the moment. gratefully, i have one reader who knows me, knows my works, and she helped weed out some selfdepricating diction. which is the kind of critique i welcome. i don't want misplaced humility (or mislabled humility) to diminish the strength of my work.

i'm moving forward. packet due tomorrow. more than halfway done. not that i mean to put it off, but my process is largely subconscious and somehow, all the conversations, all the snippets i read, all the cud i chew come together to say something.

i am grateful for this gift. for the muse who delights and intrigues me. who makes me want to keep writing.

even when i'm tired. and fear i've nothing to say.

she beckons me again,

reach out

and here, with symbol and screen, is my most direct line.

surprised again!

the way my mfa program is designed we submit packets of work. five packets in a typical semester. my first one is due tomorrow. i'm trying to sort through ideas racing through my head, an uncertain hunger in my belly, and just plain boredom with my job.

i keep saying this,
that the only thing that surprises me is that i am still surprised.
i should expect my ex to get me at any cost. he got me again today, and i was surprised by it.

i am amazed at how much i marvel at the way things are, i guess because i've been decent. or tried to be. except for the whole keying the car thing which was when we were still married and living together and i was angry. i'm not angry anymore, just done. over it. at the end of my rope.

and technically, he got all bent, but it was my car i keyed. and i told him,
if you want to key the toyota, feel free.
then, after that every scratch he got on his precious car he blamed me for, when it wasn't me. but how do you prove that?

you don't. so i let it go. he, likely, hasn't. dudes and their cars, i'll never get it.

so, i keyed my own car, so what? move on with your life man.

and now, another semester, the penultimate (i hate that word), as they say. and i can't wait to see what will happen. it's exciting what will be going on now that the internship is out of the picture. seems i am going to have to write about that later. i shouldn't say anything about it now.

i hate shoulds, seems i am doing a lot of those lately, but i'm trying to learn from my mistakes and grow.

even when i don't feel i've made mistakes, i'm trying to keep from compounding confusion by speaking my blunt mind. believe me, i'll speak when i'm free to do so.

but for now, here it is.

i'm going to start picking over my ideas like a primate parting the hairs of a fellow primate looking for bugs to eat. that's a pretty picture, right?

i'm off to see what happens. with my writing it's always interesting. and we'll see if i can bang this out something noteworthy. i think i can.

Monday, August 23, 2010


so, it's not so much that i worked an open and close in one day, same store. i've done it before. though, it was two different stores and i had a break in between where i sat in my car for a couple hours and thought,
what the hell am i doing?

this time, i had to open the next day. there was no lingering in bed while i found strength of body and mind to drag my ass back into work. no, it was out of store at ten pm, back in store at 5:15, which sucked.

my existential dread due to the fact that i now have some relief coming. help is on the way. at least the court has ordered it. when it will appear, i do not know. but i'm tired, been tired for some time. and i need a change.

i say that the motto of our company should be,
we love to hate you,
because while i appreciate you're paying an arm and a leg for something, giving shit to the person making or from whom you're ordering your drink does not bode well of your intellect and or foresight. karma's a bitch, that's all i'm saying.

so yesterday, had a grown man, about twelve hours into my shift, when i'm looking like i could rip someone's head off, bemoan the fact that i didn't want to dump an entire pitcher of tea to make him his one refill. he looked like he would cry or have a fit. i said,
if it's an issue, i'll do it.
but i made only an amount sufficient to refill and perhaps one extra. the kid i'm working with comes up behind me and makes a full pitcher, which we proceeded to dump at the end of the evening.

best laid plans. what can i say.

i am beyond caring at this point. if douche wants tea, douche can have tea. what does it matter to me?

then this one guy tells me to put twenty on his card. while his tab was twenty three. i tell him,
there isn't enough.
he says,
put twenty more,
like this is my miscommunication. i wanted to reach across the counter and snap his little chicken neck because i know how to add twenty on after the tab, but he specified twenty. how douche was going to pay the balance was not for me to decide. speak english. communicate clearly. this is why we love to hate you.

a bunch of narcissistic people bitching about foam. this is my day job.

i need a new gig like you can't imagine.

all my life through, when i've needed a change, change has come quickly.

i need a change.

universe, do you hear me, i need a change.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010


when i wrote, may justice light upon me, i had no idea that it would. i only hoped. nine months i've struggled to keep my child fed, and kept, without help. without any compassion from my ex. i am a parent, i am a woman, i am a single mom. this is my task, caring for my child. i'm so grateful i have only one. i can't imagine trying to meet the needs of more than one person at this moment in my life.

so the judge asked very few questions. numbers do not lie. and she got to work, banging out numbers based on pay stubs and cold hard facts.

when i asked for help he so flippantly responded, that i had no choice. we had to go to court. i had reached the end of my ability to do this entirely alone. i needed help. court mandated help if that is what it took.

so, when she said what she did, my attorney's mouth dropped open, and i cried.

justice lit upon me.

i told him, before we even went,
i would have been so much nicer to you than they will be.
and it proved true. i am not feeling bad about it, because he forced my hand. he dared me to take him to court. he would not help me any other way. now, he has no choice but to help.

the judge ordered it. may it be so.

and i cried.

is this all you earn?
she asked

i've been a stay at home, homeschooling mom for fourteen years,
i replied.

and she asked me no further questions. we left, grateful.

i only wish that he doesn't force me back into court, that he accepts this as the best it will get. and that, now that i have some breathing space. some, don't have to work till i drop time, that i can buy a real bed, and pay off the mounting bills.

it is well my dear ones, it is well.

that which i needed has come to me.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010


so i have this legal size, doublesided, tinest writing in the whole damn town form i have to fill out in triplicate, no less. a tangle of figures i have to commit to paper, then tuesday back to court. so much fun.

i opened five days, maybe it was six, in a row. which was nice but i aimed to sleep in today, and i guess 5:11 is sleeping in when one is up at 4:15 the entire week before.

just got final approval for my spoken word cd. i'm so excited. it sounds great. now i need to go back to the studio and lay down more tracks. when, is the question? i don't know. i think maybe i need to compile them in a book first. don't know. but i like my new work, and want to get it out there. i realized, not only have the people i love most not heard me read, this is a chance for them to hear me reading my works. not performing it, mind you, but reading it.

it is enough.

and now, i am looking forward to my people coming to my graduation in july. i will give them a private reading if they don't arrive soon enough to hear my reading (there will be a lot of us graduating). so let me go back to sleep then, and finish the paperwork later, it is not difficult, just tedious. and i'm trying to read a few books and get some thoughts on paper. first packet of the new semester due in a couple weeks. i hope to have read at least four books.

i've had no time to write creatively, but i'm collaborating on some poems with another poet and my poetry group from residency. which is exciting in its own right.

Thursday, August 05, 2010

so long

i couldn't just throw in the towel, it's not my style. though, on other occasions i have been the first to realize a dead thing, is, in fact, dead. this was ill fated from the beginning and i won't lose time contemplating why. i'm just excited to get going on something new, something i've been wanting to do for ages now.

leave all the other things aside, move forward. forward is all that matters.

Wednesday, August 04, 2010

someone died today

and it puts everything in perspective. the little bs we let sideline us, it doesn't matter. i will admit though, it was tough standing there for four hours explaining to every customer "what happened" and answering the inevitable question,
did they die?
do many people survive being struck by a train? none that i know of. it just got way old, it was ptsd wednesday at the bux. hated every minute of it.

a customer whom i'd always felt a kinship toward, maybe it's the venti chai he drinks, came walking in, face distraught saying,
i have to use your phone, i have to call 911.
and it went downhill from there, some nightmare unfolding in the picture windows we stood in front of.

and every two minutes,
what happened? did they die?

YES, they died!
we finally answered.

it was rough by the time i left because hours into this, we're still getting people who have no clue,
someone died,
i said. and turned away.

i didn't cry. wanted to several times. wanted to hurl, wanted to lose it in all manner of ways, but somehow, held it together.

it's strange how that shockwave goes out. the guy walking in the door,
i need to use your phone.

his face, his breaking down on the phone to his wife,
can you just come and sit with me for a while. i need to talk to the cops.

then, hours later he returned.

i'm sorry for how i acted.

no one needed an apology. i told him,
i would have hugged you if it didn't feel inappropriate.

he was falling apart. he slapped me on the back as he left, his thank you for my unrealized gesture. i watched him drive away and said,
i hope he gets therapy.
because he saw it happen. he kept replaying it saying,
if only, if only.

those moments never leave us. they scar the mind.

i hope, for the many people who witnessed today's tragedy, for their healing. for their collective outpouring of grief. for the mom who will get the inevitable phone call, for the friends and loved ones who will soon find out, that she just stepped out in front of the train.

i hope that they cherished every moment with her, because she's gone.

and i drove up to see my friend. i had to lay eyes on someone i love. to hug my child. to hold my bunny.

my boss made me leave on schedule saying,
any other day i'd be grateful for you to stay, but you need to go.

and i was glad to leave. so, so glad.

i couldn't take it anymore.

but now, home, grateful for the breath in my lungs, i will go sit in the sun beside the freezing cold kiddie pool with my neighbor and cherish the stifling heat, that i am still here to complain about it.

and maybe, i won't complain, i'll just be grateful i'm still here.

still here.

i wish she was too.

Tuesday, August 03, 2010

um yeah

finding myself at crossroads again.

i felt this way on saturday when the past came rolling up the drive. it's hard to prepare for the unknown (at least it is for me). so, i just do the best i can and muddle through. that's all i can do.

i understand a few things in this life, among them, that there are consequences to every action.

trust is huge for me. once lost, quite possibly, never regained. i simply move on. it's who i am.

so, now, to deal with that which is before me, soundly in my field.

that which needs to happen, does. i believe this.

i will lean upon that which i know to be true, and the rest will fall away. the rest will fall away.

Monday, August 02, 2010

why write

i'm not sure why i come here, to this place and write these thoughts. why i share them, why i continue to open up but the answer isn't as simple as one response can hold. there are many reasons. habit. boredom. nowhereelsetoturn. no therapy. literary exhibitionist tendencies. you name it. why does anyone create art? is what i'm doing here art? that is not for me to decide. but i do know artists create art by virtue of the fact that they are artists. not the other way around. art is not the impetus here, artists are.

this is something i've not really come to terms with until now, but we were asked at the midway point of our residency by our fabulous new poet what we would do with twenty million dollars. the responses varied from the practical to the wild, mine was,
whatever i want.


will you make time for writing?


i don't have to make time for my writing. this is my life. it is who i am, what i do.


i feel the same,
she said.

it has been too many years that i've given myself over to writing for me to question that process, that ingrained nature now. a dear neighbor whom i'm just getting to know offered to teach me folk guitar, but i have to refuse because i have only so much time for one, and my arms must be saved for writing. already i give too much arm and hand to my job. cannot divide the waters again.

someday, when art is my sole occupation, i may take up guitar. at the moment, making a living is the priority, and thus the demands it puts on my arms are warranted. but that will change as well.

i'm not sure how, i'm not sure when, but that which i need is coming to me.
i believe this.

Sunday, August 01, 2010


i'm trying to digest this very meaty portion of a book i'm reading. some princeton university press book, which is thick with logic and i find the invocation of myth. i love it when this happens, granted, but it sure makes me work very hard to articulate my argument when i so disagree (or simply diverge from the path well trod), with what's being said. in this case, much as in my personal life, i find the assent more captivating than the negation.


it is all i feel coursing through me. the yes of the moment. the yes of inspiration. the yes of hope.

there it is, there it all is in that passage. my paper is waiting there for me to uncoil it from the snake's suffocating embrace. the question is, how do i do that? how do i accomplish what i'm hoping to accomplish here? i don't know.

that is never comforting. that my process begins and ends in unknowing is most disconcerting. not for me, mind you, i live in this alien territory. i have to keep myself calm, and centered, and let my mind do the digesting. when my tummy starts to turn, i say,
no, it's okay. we've got this under control.

and then, i push it out of my mind. it's madness really. that my process is so seemingly detached. i understand how disconcerting it could be for someone hoping i can give them any valid answer when all i can say is a genuine, i don't know.

because i don't.

bottom line. will i fail? no. my mind has never let me down, it won't start now.

will i be successful as i want to be? i hope so. that remains to be seen. if it can be had by hardwork and ingenuity then it will be had by me. if not, then, it remains to be seen. but that is life. life is all mystery. we simply do the best we can with what we've got before us. good, bad, indifferent, our best is all we have to offer at any moment.

and i grow weary of my station. i want to launch out. i find myself chomping at the bit for that better life i'm imagining. i'm creating in my mind. that place of peace and happiness i will no longer live without. how does one get to that place? i don't know.

does such a place exist. surely, there is a whole world to be had out there. i'm not asking for anything more than goodness. not an ounce more than abundance. nothing less than utter and complete triumph. no more unhappy endings for me. i won't settle for that anymore.

and when i go flying from my misadventures. whether tangible or figurative, i will laugh the laugh of a content woman. and be grateful for a moment of defying gravity. and look forward to the next flight.

favored of the gods am i.

my paper is right there in this one passage, waiting to be unleashed. so be it.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

set a course

i've not worked on my visual file (ala artist's way) for about two years. maybe longer. i lug the thing around (it's about six feet long by three feet high and currently acts as a very inspirational room divider. trouble is, it is two sided and the back side is blank except for my girls attempts to create a visual file, which consists of about five pictures of spongebob, fairly odd parents, some random animal shots. a few horses, and lots of parrots. i'm going to strip them off, because i thought about just pasting over them, and i don't know that it won't compromise the core to not have it all adhered nicely, though that sounds mercinary, ripping off pictures, even random pictures, that my daughter pasted there.

this is why i'm doddling.

so i've had it in my mind, have an O magazine or two around, been meaning to shred them, often there are very fine words in O mag. but that isn't enough. i found a stack of martha stewart living at work today, and brought them home. they are perfect the photos really inspire me. and now, i will begin giving substance to my dreams. because what i've found in the course of this file business is, dreams really do come true.

watch and see.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

safety here

i've compromised my own safety, no one did that to me, i did that to myself. now i have to figure out where to go, what to do with it all. how to proceed given my new self imposed constraints. i don't do well constrained. so, part of me says, fuck it, just do what you do. let the chips fall where they may. and i'm trying so hard to be nice. it really requires a vast amount of effort for me to just smile sometimes (granted, there are those who get the gentle, soft, cuddly suzanne, but those are the few, the rare, the chosen). everyone else gets the hedgehog, or porcupine might be better.

all i know is i don't know where to go or what to do now. constraints confound me.

while i understand i can chew the cud to nothing then regurgitate it and chew it some more. this process i understand, it is part and parcel of who i am.

what i don't understand is how someone like me makes it in a world where politeness is the rule. granted, i don't throw tantrums (my closest friends get that), but i can stay pretty well composed in most situations. but sometimes, i wonder how i'll get anywhere. baffled. my own fault. but i am who i am.

so where to go from here. what to do with who i am. my very bent is this way.

i keep trusting it will be well. in part because there is not a whole hell of a lot else i can do. sure i can wring my hands but that has never been an activity i much engage in. rather, i get active and do something about it. if the context can't change perspective can. there's lots of room to shift focus. to feel around the elephant and describe some other part.

i can do this. i know i can. these trials are not bigger than me. my will is strong. my stubbornness serves me well.

but i'm tired. i'm busy. i'm trying to be positive but finding there are variables i can't control.

i tell my friends,
control what you can. yourself alone.

i need to take my own advice. but sometimes i'm trapped in my head and when i've offered up my venting space, well, i've screwed myself in ways unimaginable. only now am i realizing it. the problem of lack of foresight is not knowing where you're headed.

likely, this is all hormonal (easy to chalk it up to that), but i want to grow beyond this. to evolve.

that can only happen if i'm gentle with myself and those around me. i have found lashing out helps no one.

i keep trying to change my life, and i trust that i have. that things will continue to come up, but i am equipped to handle them.

i am safe here. in my home. in my head. in my heart. here is my land and country, and no one has constraining power over me here. not even myself.

there is some comfort in that fact.

Monday, July 26, 2010

find your way back

there are so many things i could say. so many ways i could trip myself up. but nothing is wrong. i have to just trust that even when it feels like doom is impending, it isn't that's just some catastrophic thinking i have learned to live with and i'm not living like that anymore.

my girl had her heart set on a particular bunny. we found him and adopted him today. it was nice to see her wish fulfilled. wish i could do that more often. and he has such a sweet disposition, that he let her hold him for an hour while we dashed about trying to get the things he needed to live with us. (someone more practical, perhaps, would have had everything prepared in advance, but not me, i like to wing it. or i'm so used to winging it, i don't know how to plan which is why i assembled the cage with two walls upside down and had to reconfigure it). my girl said,
next time, let's read the directions.

i did!
that's the trouble. directions don't work for me.

but bunny is happy and we are well. now i have to start knocking out some schoolwork so i can rest. i had a lot of personal stuff to tend to (still do) when i got back from boston, but i'm through most of it, by no means all, but most of it is under wraps. my pony has had an oil change, a good 1400 miles later than i usually get around to it, but i've been racing. so, i've let a few things slip.

now to cuddle that bunny and settle down for a nap before my phone starts a ringing. which fortunately for me, it does.

there is no other shoe, this goodness will prevail. trust it and see.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

come to me

did i tell you that i was trying to change my life. i stood at crossroads some months back and asked my friend,
do i need to move for change to happen or will change happen, then i move

she didn't know, as i did not know. so i moved. i leapt out. i went for it. and now, everything has changed. everything.

there is no going back. i never want to go back. it's good, great, getting better all the time. i'm learning what it means to live.

and so i told her everything i could. bared my soul.

then she bared hers. together we cried.

but i'm happy,
i said.

and she understood.

happiness is reason enough.

do we get to keep it, the heart treasures we unlock from stone? i believe so. sometimes, a warm breath is all it takes to defrost them. and the closeness of two bodies to melt the isolation away. sometimes, presence is all that is required. no voices. no intrigues. just heartbeats and togetherness.

this is what happiness means to me.

and soon, hopefully very soon, i will have another i love come to me again. i try not to get my hopes up, but they fly. they fly.

let it come to fruition, then i'll share. a story is better told in retrospect rather than speculation.

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

Saturday, July 24, 2010


it comes in many forms. for some, it is the unspeakable. the avoidable. the danger zone. for me, it is the fertile soil, the air i breathe. i don't know that it's right, necessarily, to speak truth as much as possible, as often as possible, but it's all i know. it is my greatest liability. and so the trend continues. i speak my truth, affirm who i am, and find myself less afraid.

it was time to tell her. she had to know. i want always and only for her to know me. and so she does. good bad or indifferent.

what does this mean, perhaps more than i understand at the moment. it's all new to me. i am green in this life. but i want to live it on my terms. to be open and honest as i can be. and her knowing was key to my moving forward.

and so she does.

what now? life goes on as before in some respects because nothing has changed. that's the thing about the truth. it is not dealing any new facts into the matter, save awareness. understanding. possibly, misunderstanding, fear, prejudice. that is always a possibility. but the risks are worth the truth, always have been in my mind.

i could not live freely if i were trying to not be who i am. the thing is, i'm always discovering something new. there is a strange confidence here, a fierce courage. and a willingness to grow. it has been so good. and i want to grow.

a girl at work told me of a trial she endures on a regular basis, i listened but was not afraid.

in my own life, on my own terms, i am going to grow. to celebrate. to discover what it means to be the woman that i am.

i trust it will be well.

and so it shall.