Monday, August 10, 2015

wishin and hopin. [and emergin.]

Why do we tie our worth to our romantic relationships?
We feel on top of the world when we're with someone... like all of our insecurities slowly melt away.  The person we love more than anyone else in the world, thinks our imperfections make us perfect for them.
And so, when they leave... especially when they leave for someone else, we begin questioning our worth.
The absurdity of it is so easy to see from the outside, and yet, even I am only just emerging from the fog of lies that fills your head and heart space when a breakup puts your emotions on life support.
The irony is that the person you fall in love with is seeing what your family and your friends have all been seeing. This is old news to everyone else. So, maybe it's that we have someone hold up a mirror and point out all of the beautiful things about us (inside and out) and they celebrate those things out of an adoration.  Maybe they're incredibly good at doing this... or maybe you've had the situation where your partner takes that mirror and uses it as a manipulation tool and they only remind you of the truth about yourself when they want something.   Maybe the person you loved turned out to be someone else entirely, and so you assume they were lying about your worth, as well. Maybe no one has ever held up this proverbial mirror, and when it happens, it's as though you're seeing yourself through the eyes of love for the first time.  If they leave, it so often feels like they obliterate the mirror and confirm all of our fears about our inadequacy and leave us wondering if our magnificence ever existed in the first place.

I remember, not so long ago, walking into the bathroom each morning, looking at myself in the after day... searching for a moment, finding myself still looking back... and I was so ashamed of the flaws screaming at me that I would burst into tears.
I found myself wishing my hair wasn't curly anymore...
wishing I'd color it...
wishing I was skinny...
wishing I was shorter...
wishing I had an entirely different bone structure...
wishing my skin was pale...
and that I had a penchant for covering myself in tattoos...
essentially I was wishing I was some sort of suicide girl pinup.
I wished I was a bit more feisty and mouthy and a bit more liberal and maybe had some relaxed morals... on and on the ridiculous but very real rabbit trail went, until I realized, I was wishing to disappear.  I wished I wasn't myself. I wanted so badly to be perfect for the person that I still loved, that I would make myself disappear, if it would make him love me.

[  n e w  -  k i n d  -  o f  -  l o w  ]

What is actually happening is a bit more like this:

It's a Night at the Museum, and Leonardo Da Vinci's "Head of a Young Woman" comes to life like an animated pixar character. She looks up and begins weeping and thrashing about, spitting on the mirror hanging opposite her because she's disgusted with her image. She begins shouting abuse at herself and telling her masterful creator (who's statue is also alive in this moment) that his work is sub par and that he has definitely made many terrible mistakes which she painstakingly lists in alphabetical order.
Finally, she explains that she should look more like Mona Lisa.

And as absurd as it sounds, it happens so often.
With me.
With you.

I don't know the answer.

I just wish we knew our worth, and didn't forget it so easily.
I wish we loved ourselves better.
I wish we loved each other better.
I wish we were more purposeful about how we navigate relationships.

I wish I had an answer.

But, if you are in that place... stop. Don't wait until you feel like it, just stop wailing on yourself. Stop abusing yourself. Stop repeating these negative things over and over. Get reacquainted with you. Whatever that looks like.  Start writing down things you love and things that make you smile. Spend time with people who will remind you of who you are. Put on music that YOU found that reminds you of whatever it is you're passionate about or your favorite place in the world. Watch a film that always makes you smile, and ask why.  Read a book that you loved as a child.   Remember what makes your heart beat... your dreams... your goals.
Take off your masks and armor and get to know yourself again. Then revel in who that person is. Not in a weird narcissistic way, but "treat yoself!"
That person is pretty wonderful, to say the least. It may not happen overnight. It most probably won't. But get to know yourself again, and realize it's a really complex individual but it's a masterpiece.
And it will get better.

Saturday, June 20, 2015

f e t c h .

I’m going to remind you that this is all far fetched. Gloriously far fetched, but fetching. I could be next in line - next in the queue. All of these familiar feelings and unfamiliar ways...
But I like it very much. So, for now... for today... until whenever it’s without question.
If ever… I mean…
I’ll keep it in my pocket like a lucky stone.
Anyway, there are these moments where I can just float along and forget.
I hope and pray and dream and I can just be.
Even, this afternoon just as the storm came, I was drifting.
And then, out of thin air, curiosity slinks round my thoughts like a sneaky house cat, and all that was stilled, began moving. Later on, when I'm good and vexed and moody, there will be a sound when i least expect it. A feeling, a reminder like a gentle breeze whispering over your skin setting the butterflies alight... and I’m gone again. Just gone and set adrift. Just like that, I'm all at sea.
And so, let me remind you that I know that it’s all a bit far fetched
Except that it isn’t.
I feel it breathing
With me.

Tuesday, May 19, 2015

lady di.

We were on the patio that warm night
I can still smell it
The rich foods fading as the kitchen closed down for the night
The temperature falling, but not too much…
Spring was giving way to summer
I was glowing
Much like the red awning with all of the lights beneath
I was in love.
Something stunning.
Something came alive in me
The stars had “aligned”
It was my turn
The sketches of dreams now filled in
I could see him
My gorgeous man
And I gave him that room
That grace to become
And I bloomed in the reciprocity
I was his.
It was beautiful and I glowed in it.
I never was moved by southern city names,
But it was all made right in Memphis.
Though it all began much earlier for me.
That night, I was floating.
I felt like I’d won the lottery of love.
The dreamy boy in school picked me!
That night, she approached me… meeting my smile
Happy for me, and I was surprised.
I knew we got along, but didn’t realize I meant much to her
It’s a sentiment echoed throughout much of my life, if I’m honest
But that’s another story for another time.
I was waiting with friends for him to clock out…
And she walked over to me as I sat at that black high patio table
I remember the grates and the feel of the chair beneath me
I remember her heels as she moved closer to me
Such a beautiful lady, she was.
She spoke to me with an air of authority that stilled me
She said, “he better treat you like a queen, and don’t you dare ever settle for less”
I remember that I stopped breathing for a second.
Hindsight is 20/20, isn’t it?
You see it all so clearly…
Not how it felt, or the heaviness of the door, or how familiar the place had become
Not the table numbers or the drinks or the faces of regulars
Or the playlist on heavy rotation… what game was on
What time it was…
But every feeling filling in the details with color
And the fact that I still saw myself as a girl of the cinders
Waiting to be discovered by a prince
Waiting to become a princess

When all the while I was a queen.

Saturday, May 16, 2015


Find me
Full of light and fury
Full of dark and hurry
Full of angst and worry
Anxious in a still still room
On a bed
Held only by walls I painted
Tucked in some lonesome corner of the county
Wrapped up in shrouds of beauty
Most of them would curse it
Most of them would lay down and die
The heavy weight of being cast off.
The moment you wake to realize you are no longer…
The love of anyone’s life.
The highest priority…
The deepest heartbeat
The most beautiful
The apple of their dark eyes
The motivating factor
The color in the sky…
The light… the light that makes them move…
You’ve been unraveled
And ushered by your lover into the very jaws of hell…
And left
To drink the seas of loneliness down…
The pale ring on the finger of your left hand…
The diamond lost.
Now, wrapped up in excuses and justifications
And the passing off of blame
Heavy on your shoulders
Heavy on your head
Heavy on your furrowed brow
Heavy on your mind
Always on your mind
Silent and haunted.
Feeling breathless
Burning lungs
Cracked lips
A prayer ever on my lips…
Unuttered words
And lost affection
Stolen affection
And the red marks of lies like welts to the face.
And so in this brokenness… I wait.
Wait in the feeling
Wait in the knowing
Wait until I’m healed
Wait until I’m found

Find me…

the madness. [prelude]

There are the blues.
There are the mean reds.
And then there is the madness.
You cannot choose it.
It’s like an illness of providence.
Not mad in the sense of being a harm to yourself or others…
Not mad in the sense of creating your own reality…
But mad in the sense of being able, or rather willing to sit in the ache.
To find words to explain the feelings.
The highest of the highs…
The lowest of despondent lows…
And giving meaning and depth… making a song out of the rhythm of the every day.
Because it isn’t always these tiresome waves…
Waves of jubilee.
Waves of sadness.
That word just seems so mild.
When what you mean is something so incredibly cold that it burns…
And bones ache
Delirious with the feeling.
Every breath is agony.
But there’s this mark that your eyes are fixed on…
This deep intent to survive it.
To be still in the chaos… not to be part of it, or to allow it to become you…
Not to overpower it with anger.
But breathe through it slowly like labor pains…
Trusting that there is something miraculous on the other side.
Trusting that you’ll be carried to the shore,
And find your feet again
And so you sing your way through it
You give the pain a sound
You harmonize with the wailing
To make some beauty of the dark.
The madness…
Is my being thrown against the blackness of the sky
Being buried in the grief of midnight
And letting it crush me until I become a diamond
And my pain explodes into a hundred stars
To guide some weary eyes to a new dawn of hope.
It is hope singing in the middle of the night.
And so here I am.
It has eluded me.
I have run and run and run til I can run no more.
Put the day to bed…

And let me sing again.

Friday, March 6, 2015

It is flashback friday after all...

i found some old entries from twenty-ten.
it's so remarkable to me...
i understand that hindsight is 20/20. but i was so passionate. so alive. so very confused. but i'd rather that state of confusion than the one i'm in at present.

there was a man in my world at the time who doted on me like none has.
i found it too good to be true and i ran from his advances.
tried to anyway.
looking back, i see that i blossomed in them. i bloomed. i came even more alive. i missed him until i ached. i spoke of him whenever i had the chance, and my face glowed and cheeks blushed when i thought of him.
he may very well have been a charlatan.
he may very well still be.
but i was, for a few very real moments falling in love with him.

d i s t a n c e .

i wrote so many songs.
putting up a fight.
and falling.
he spoke to me in ways i'd never been talked to.
he chased after my heart.
he was the first thought in the morning.
my last thought at night.
and i eagerly awaited his calls and messages.
they went both ways.
i wasn't pursuing.
for once in my life, it wasn't all me.

how lovely life can be when it is two instead of one.

all i have now are these snapshots.
and i compare and contrast.
and it all seems so very silly, in the end.

i have no idea how i got here.
in the middle of winter... in a thick forest full of trees.
it feels endless on all sides.
and i just want a hope for the future.
and to be adored here.
to have a joy here.

oh God in heaven, what on earth has happened here?

Friday, February 27, 2015

i have hit the canyon floor
wonder if i can take some more
my heart is broke; my head is sore
for better or for worse
i have told my love to leave
but i'm the only one to grieve
there's oxygen but i can't breathe
is there blessing beyond this curse

shaking in my bed alone
clinging to all the promises i've known
but my heart is now without a home
and nothing's making sense
they say i should run away
doesn't matter if i go or stay
are you mine or will you stray
again and again

late at night i dare to dream
that you find your way back to me
that everything is finally
for better not for worse
nothing could keep you away
the darkest hour began to fade
am i sleeping
or wide awake
is it all finally ok

tell me it's enough

Thursday, February 26, 2015

Imagine if we all told the truth about our lives.
Imagine what a difference we might really make.
If we didn't hide behind pretty fonts and catchphrases and hashtags. If our faces were bare with no filters or blur tools. I love instagram for sharing beautiful things. I love capturing life and sharing the little pieces. But it isn't all of life. If you saw all of my life, you'd likely sit down and weep next to me, because, at present it isn't pretty here. Maybe my excuse is that I'm trying to celebrate the small beautiful things. But I want to confess that you are not seeing everything. It isn't the whole picture.
My soul is in agony.  There are decisions to be made that I never thought I would have to make.
My heart is broken. I have been rejected and cheated again and again. I feel abandoned. My number one priority relationship of the kind that is chosen... is hanging on by a thread. A thread that is unraveling. And it feels like my heart hangs over the edge of a cliff.  The person holding the other end, deigns to hold it... there is no passion. There is no pursuit. No fighting for love. No valiant effort.

When I was very young, I saw Cinderella for the first time. I wanted to be her. I identified with her in many silly and many real ways. I'm not a damsel in distress longing for rescue. I'm a strong woman. A queen, deserving of a king. But, I have been discarded like a piece of trash on the side of the road. I see myself in that way, sadly, and so I have allowed it.

Every choice I make is making indelible marks on the canvas of my little girl.
Every day I am building her foundation.

It's time to stand up.
It's time to remember...
Who I am.
Who's I am.
What I always wanted to be.
The woman I wanted to become.
It's time to listen...
to the beat of my heart.
to the song in my spirit.
to the truth.

I have hit the canyon floor.
I can lay down... or stand up.
And honestly, I've felt like I can't stand up... but I'm fighting to.

And that's when I heard it...

You are lifted.

Tuesday, February 24, 2015


i boarded the northern train
courage in my spirit
determination in my eyes
an empty platform
and smoldering ash left behind.
but i could feel your ghost breathing
next to me in the empty seat
i missed you terribly
but kept on riding away.
i meant to change lines...
or did i?
i boarded the southern train
i wanted to be sure
i wanted to ride for a while
maybe i'd made it all up in my head
maybe it was just a dream
that had driven me from my bed
and i wished it to move faster
and closer still
waiting for the stop to bring you near
you said you'd be there
waiting there for me
and as i descended the stairs
i could only see
you confiding in another
waiting on the seat
and i wondered why you couldn't
just wait alone for me
and i fled the platform
the excuses and the whys
boarded the northern train
with anger in my eyes
and stayed awake all night
elephant seated on my chest
breathing shallow
in silence
watching the night hold tight the rest.
i nodded off
no blanket
i was frozen when i woke with a start
telegrams delivered
hope beating in my heart
and i jumped trains again
to return as you'd asked
because you meant it
you were broken
i could feel it
deep as the wounds went inside.
the weather got rather bad, it seemed
there was ice on the bridge
delay after delay
if i could make
2 more stops
one more ridge
and i arrived
so soon the flame had gone?
my heart imprinted with your palms
and you - unsure of what you want
run here and there
with no qualms
and i am circling the state
in my tiny little car
going mad with every shake
i flip the coin
and every day it lands on the other side
so tell me once and for all
tell it plain
look me squarely in the eyes
and tell the truth
and nothing but
will you stay or will you go
take a minute
make up your mind
are you
or are you not mine?

Sunday, February 22, 2015

shapes in the trees.

the branches made a hand
a finger pointing
with a giant ring
wouldn't it be nice for us to see such things
so obviously.
and then, i was startled from my mental walk...
she woke up screaming
and it broke my heart
night terrors in the middle of the day
for a moment, i saw myself in her
but i didn't know what to make of it.
so i blinked a few times
and all i could do was hold on tight.
my nearness kept her still.
and all of the chaos inside, for a moment
was quiet.
my little companion.
oh how she loves me.
and my adoration of her...
i'll be trying to translate it into words all the rest of my life
this love
there is no fear in it.
there is no doubt in it.
i went back and sat down next to that cherished furry friend
and he laid his sleepy head on my hands.
i didn't realize how often i wring them...
or how cold they stay
until he kept them warm and still.
he often keeps me warm
in the night and in the day
he senses everything
without ever having to speak
for now, at least, until he too is gone away.
i allow the rules to be broken, here and there
just to give my head a little relief.
a little moment away from the grief
and it all just goes on.
and i'm not sure where it went.
or where it's headed so fast
or why it can't wait a moment for me.
why is my love so easy to leave?
why isn't it enough?
when will it be?
i found myself confiding in the wind.
it whispered for a while
and then wailed to me.
it shook against the window
and cried against the frames
but i couldn't understand a word it said.
i prayed softly... help us
let that peace come in
let it drown and banish the sorrows within
let love Himself find me here.
and when i wake up screaming
and it breaks his heart
he'll hold on oh so very tight
for the nearness of Him will keep me still.
this love
this adoration
there is no fear in it.
there is no doubt in it.
and all the chaos - for always -
be quiet.

wildflowers. [an inner dialogue]

I think she's winning.
Or already won.
I'm not even sure why it's become a competition.
I didn't register for a competition.
I signed up for love.
I loved.
See it still beats love...
My heart heaving there on the floor...
covered in knife wounds.
And in the midst of all of the suffering here
In the recovery
In the trying
I am thrown in a race... running...
Fighting for my own given title
Fighting to keep my name
on my own damned track.
I am invisible and he is bewitched.
She is bewitching.
I hate it.
All of it.
White rage.
Black out.
I've lost consciousness.
I've lost some sort of grip.
No steadiness.
And so,
I came to
An ocean rushing in... slow and loud...
I sat there just letting it all wash over me.
Letting it all bleed out in tears.
Every heartbeat pulsing the ache.
Every vein carrying the pain.
and still so empty and hollow.
At least I can button my coat.
But I don't feel particularly warm.
Just cold all of the time.
And I wept... wept to free myself of it
Of the deep sadness
Trying to rid myself of it all...
and it won't go easily.
Our DNA strands got tangled.
I feel I'm killing my body trying to rid it of him.
Trying to turn myself inside out
So I give in... for a moment... just give in.
But we aren't ever alone here, are we...
Always a ghost.
A shadow.
The scent.
The laughter.
Looking over my shoulder.
My face, uncherished, won't glow
My lips, unkissed, won't turn upward
My heart, unwon won't sing anything but the blues
[Lament, you weary fool.]
My body unwanted buried in black.
My mind, tormented, paces like a madman in a cell.
Back and forth.
Back and forth.
Back and forth.
Repeating back lies like incantations.
Seeing all for a while... seeing it all in plain sight like a silent oracle.
And still repeating lies.
[You unfortunate wretch.
They beg you to wake up.
An heiress dressed like a pauper.
A queen bowing to her king's cruel mistress
In her guilded cage of stockholm syndrome
Wake up, you sleeping fool.
Take this pill and carry on.]
I'll take nothing.
I want to feel it all
I want to feel the depths of these dark days.
But I'll no longer bow.
Leave me to grieve it, now.
But I'll rise.
I'll rise like a sun.
Like a scorned goddess plucked from the yawning jaws of death
by the hands of providence itself.
Let me weep here for a moment.
I'll take back all that is rightfully mine.
But for now, just you watch this terrible dance...
Just get lost in the sound.
Let the dreary symphony finish.
Let them revel.
Let them finish their spinning of lies.
The dawn will turn those words to dust,
and I'll have mine.
I'll have mine.
I'll have mine.
Just let me cry for a while longer.
Let me sleep, until I wake.
I'll awaken...
and a gentle hand will place a wildflower in my hair.
He'll say...
Come away
Come away
Come away.

Tuesday, February 10, 2015

I won't ever forget that night.
I remember an afternoon before, I was wandering round the old building in the cold trying to find my way in. I found a stairway down to this magical little patio that I'd never seen. All of my life... tucked away just there beneath the sidewalk... and my roving exploring eyes never noticed it. Just tucked beneath a garden with fairy lights everywhere. And as much as I adore autumn and winter, even I, for a moment, longed for spring. In seconds I'd painted this elaborate daydream... the voices... the sounds... the passing cars, all unaware. I could smell the food and taste the wine... white for a change... a moscato, perhaps.
But we were talking about that night.
I remember the moments before leaving that evening. I looked in the mirror and was becoming happy again with what I saw.  Post nursing allowed me to fit into old tops... skinny jeans... I only wished I'd had some heels or chelsea boots. I bought new makeup. A new foundation. The magic kind that only happens every once in a while. Not too dewy. Not too matte. Like taking a blur tool and just ever so slightly taking out of focus what no one else probably could see anyway. I was glowing. I'd dressed up a bit and pulled it off and felt just short of a million bucks. But just short of a million is still a lot of money these days.
It felt so good.
I rushed down the stairs.
I strutted out the door.
As a yummy mummy might with child upon hip.
Hair disheveled now, but it didn't matter. She - the finishing touch.
We whirled to the car and sang on our way.
I had butterflies.
I wanted him to notice.
We arrived.
I was this darling, beautiful woman - comfortable in her own skin again.
I found myself fluttering around the room just dancing with her. It's what we always do.
In a few moments I'd find myself twirling with her into the room next to the patio I'd noticed a couple of weeks past. I was carelessly singing and laughing and dancing... she loved it... I loved it...
It felt good.
We celebrated life and love and all of these wonderful things.
I celebrated him with everyone.
But in the end, he didn't notice.
He didn't see me.
He was watching her.
I wish I was difficult
Always have to be right
I wish I was typical
Oh the cruel to be kind, kind
I'd make a scene of it
All the stories I'd tell
I'd make you pay for it
Make you pay for this hell

I wish I caused turbulence
The way that you do
I wish that you'd suffer once
The way I have for you
I'd turn you black and blue
If I had all that strength
And no heart to control it with
Lead you on to the pain

I tried it again last night
Tried to turn inside out
But the tables were turned on me
And I must do without
It's a city of one way streets
And I have to abide
And there's no reciprocity
Only wrongs and no rights

I've grown
Used to the shoulder and
I've grown
Colder and colder
As it gets
older and older
I find myself
Not myself at all

Take me
down to the river
And pull me
down through the waters
And heal me
Heal me or just let me go
Let me go cold

Saturday, January 3, 2015


i love the way my fingers find their way
on the worn pages
devoured pages
transcending the ages
words like a feast
the table, set and decorated
in that old world fashion
in this room that i've waited
and i prayed that in the very least
i'd find some hidden treasure
scribbled near the crease
some promise
in ink
some signature
some proof of it
of the wine
of the drink
of the way you move in it
of the way you think
lessen the blows
or explain them away
tell me again
and make it plain
what have i forgotten
what have i to learn
what is it i'm holding
fan the flames that still burn
half dead
half alive
either way
either side
i've been on the edge
of the day and the night
it's almost come about
but that doesn't make a good story
when almost doesn't count
and there is no glory
i want it all
i want it all to come through
i want it all
i want it written by you