Tuesday, December 31, 2002

Listen 08/2007

The problem is, at least, twofold
First - you have created lives & relationships where you are not one, but two-in-one. You develop them, nurture them with all understanding that you are inseparable. That what one thinks, what one does, the other echoes. There can be no separating. Like conjoined twins, you may have a foot that is "yours", a hand that is "theirs", but in the end, all is one. So when this heart shuns or breaks, who can say which "me" is really the cause?

Second - you have shown me how you love, how you heal. You have shown me how you - each of you separately and together - act when you truly care. You surround people. Quite literally, you surround them, engulf them, immerse them in yourselves. You place yourself in their lives, and draw them into yours. You become a part of every decision, every activity. You get so close to them that skin becomes an impediment and bathe them in breath, warmth, life, love. You put yourselves physically into their presence so that the things in your heart shine into them like sun on a hot summer beach, so that it soaks into them, willing in the moment or no. And while one half shines, beats, throbs, sends their heart and soul out shining warmth, acceptance, love, the other whispers words to unlock the ears & the heart so that it can begin to believe the messages that are being sent on silent channels.

You know. You know what things the dark whispers. Dark corners of the room... dark corners of the heart. You know what sibilant doubts, nasty thoughts, evil soul-sucking knowings come out when the light goes out of your life & you're all alone. You know. When you came, you said to me in your silence, "I know these things. I have heard them." And you shared light & warmth with me, and I heard your soul say, "I see you. What those whispers say are not true. You must not listen. I see you. I know you. I don't speak well or often, but I love you. I will lay beside you and I will hold you so that your heart can hear what my body will say for me. Look into my eyes while we are close so that our souls can merge and raise and bask together in joy and celebration. Lower your sheilds, throw away your defenses so that we can hear one another. Listen to what my heart says and we will melt the darkness away. Listen to the things I send you through our very skin where it touches, to the things I spill into the air around us while we hold you. Listen. Trust me. I will hold you, I will not drop you. I will not leave. We will drown the whispers from the dark in waves of pleasure, in pure peace and bliss and stubborn acceptance and even in everyday nothings that are everything. We will hold you close in our life, close to our body, close to our heart. All is One. Always. Listen to me. You are good. You are worthy. You are ours. I love you and I will not let you go. Listen to me. Listen to me. Listen to me."

And I, having only one self to send all messages, heard the You. And I listened. And I believed. And I held you and cherished you in your entirety, regardless of which body was speaking or which way it spoke. When I had trouble hearing it, I tried to say so, trusting come hard but given, believed that missing pieces were not missing, only misplaced. Only a matter of time & effort to find, to find the right spot to nestle them into, and that it didn't matter how long that took as long as we just kept trying. And I sent back in every way that I could find to send all those things you said to me and more so that sorrow shared could be broken into many tiny pieces until it became insignifcant, and joy shared could become joy tripled, joy rippled, joy sent outwards into those around us and into the world itself.

Now... now the darkness laughs at me, and it's worse than any begging doubt they ever tried to send me before I met you, for now they have teeth, and truth, and substance with which to flail me. When I close my eyes, bodiless things come out & surround my feeble bastion of pillows, filling the cold emptiness next to me with mocking. Worse, sometimes they come warm & solid, & in those seconds between sleep & knowing, I think for the briefest of breaths that all will get better - that you are finally there, that knowing how, you have come. You have come while I slept & are surrounding me once again, strong enough to shush me, hold me, refuse to let me go or speak or think until I can hear you in the silence again. Then they whisk away, sucking warmth into their soulless empty whispers, leaving me cursing & weeping for the dawn. When daylight comes & their ugly twisted visages are shielded from open eyes, still they whisper mocking laughter from those dark corners of the heart. "See? We were right all along. Who is with you now? Where is your shining shield, your precious joy now? Where is that warmth and love you so cherished? Vanished. They looked at you and when they really got to know you, they discovered they were.... mistaken. You are not good - you are broken. You are not worthy - you are worthless. And most importantly, you are not theirs. You are ours. They do not want you, they found you lacking, they do not want you, and they have left you to us. They do not want you. They want only a little piece of you. There is noone and nothing that wants all of you. Ever. Listen to us. There will be no other voices but ours again. You are ours. Listen to us. Listen to us. Listen to us."

And I hear them. This is the danger of bringing someone in close - I know what "really" feels like now, and a half-hearted substitute yields no joy. I hear them. The single voice I sometimes hear speak out against them is thin and far away, and comes but rarely now. I almost cannot hear it at all, and being only words it is oh, so quickly washed away, drowned in the fathoms. Even when I am with you, I see you, hear you from far away, surrounded on all sides by buffers of whispering, walls of grey mist. I have to work to hear you speak, work to respond, work to keep them from spilling out of me into you. That is the hardest - I must, at all costs, keep them away from you. I may be worthless & disposable, but I cannot let them spill into you. I cannot let them near you, cannot let them have you too. I must keep you safe. They laugh at how far away you are, how your heart turns to look the other way, stays in its own beating space. The darkness laughs at me, there is no hope left to me to hold them at bay, and memory is but a wisp. Listen. You know what they say - you have heard them. And you have left me to them. You know. I asked you to help me, & instead you have left me. You have left me to them. Knowing.

Close Only Counts in Horse Shoes and Hand Grenades (07/2007)

Children laughing, playing together
over a game of Aggravation
The Object is not to lose your marbles.
stay safe.
find home.

Roll... two steps here.. 6 there..
"Home! I made it Home!"
Roll again, jump to the center
"I got one! I'm safe! I win!"
Then, "awwwww"
& cries of "Do over!" fill the room

When you leave childhood,
that privilege is left behind
but the Object stays the same
not to Lose Your Marbles.
stay Safe.
find Home.

in this year
there are too many dark moments
hours where
I struggle for anything to hold onto
some requirement to keep me here
things to require that
I stay

As my soul sits
curled in on itself
wretched in dispair
I hear them crying out -
laughing, full of life
indignant, but sure of respite
"Do over!"

and I
I whisper a hopeless plea into empty
as though now that I'm an adult
respite might still exist.
it is swallowed up
in space and silence:

"Do over"


Underestimating Anne 06/2007

The year kept stumbling on. Every day, every hour accompanied, encompassed by a silent howl of despair that underlay every breath. The tiniest scraps of good were scrabbled together in a desperate attempt to keep going, and misery was part and parcel of saying hello to each new morning. Sleep wasn't a refuge either. Dreams used to be a mystical fantasy place worth escaping to. Now, if they came at all, they were dull... colourless, flavourless... or bad; bad as the most despairing moments felt in the lonliest deepest part of the heart. Worse, there was this sense of anticipation - holding. As though the very air KNEW there was more in store. Somewhere, sometime, sometime soon, another shoe would drop. Then another. Ugly, unhappy-making shoes that would fall with a depressing thud, knocking another few ounces of goodness out of the pitiful store you had left. It got to a point where it didn't even feel worth trying to dodge the next bullet when it came. Really, the best that could be hoped for was to endure. Yeah, this wasn't going to be a year for joy, or happiness. I just tucked my head down & hoped it would be over soon.
~~~ 2007

The Foolishness of Living 05/2007

I've heard it said that you have to hit bottom before you can come back up. Well, the night I wrote this came pretty close to bottom. Not quite, but close. And just because I'm not there today doesn't mean that for a little while, this wasn't the truest thing I could pull out of my soul. Some nights feel as though they will never end... too many things here burrow deep into my darkest fears to say they're completely untrue. And yet somehow, the night always does end. Perhaps an eternity later, but it does. And when it does, all these ugly things I wrote & felt that might make people want to feel pity or disgust, distance themselves from something broken seem ethereal, unreal, not myself. This is not, on the balance of my life, who I am. It is a dangerous darkess that it would be hypcritical to deny, but it is not how I have spent even a fraction of my lifetime. We are all a mass of contradictions, a melee of emotion, a conglomeration of things that ought to make no sense when you put them together. But somehow, they do. They are "Human". And sometimes being human isn't all that pretty. Here. If you're going to revere me for being strong, then do it knowing how far wrong you can be. And yeah... I'm hiding it deep in history on purpose. If you found this through anything other than sheer chance, you've got too much damn time on your hands.

There is no future worth having. I see no joy.. I see no love.. I see no days ahead with enough sunshine anywhere in the world to warm me again. I see days filled with meaningless nothings and long nights where the darkness stretches endless and friendless and cold and alone. My daughter gives me no true joy, for there is noone to share her with. There is noone to share the frustrations & the challenges... noone with whom to share the triumph of her very existence. Noone to end a day with, sharing warmth and tiny tales, talking over little problems and laughing at miniscule joys. Noone to turn hard work into play. My body ages and withers and all the fruits granted humans therein wither with the passing days, uncelebrated. It doesn't matter if I spend my day in laughter or in tears, in the end there is noone to share them with. Noone to turn back the coldness of utter indifference. "Home is that place where when you have to go there, they have to take you in" -- there is no home. There will never be a home other than my own skin, my own soul, and what a dark & sorry place that has become to call home. I carry pain like a hard stone just under my breastbone, and walk thinking at any moment it will double me over. That it will pull me as surely as a muscle cramp into a tiny ball of agony unable to move. That I will not be able to find a dark corner in which to cry these tears, that I will spill them here in public - over the vegetables at the grocery store, the brass kettle at the antique store, gas station, mailbox, school... I see years ahead of me, dry as dust on a forgotten shelf. Each day breathing only because the body hasn't sense enough to know the soul has given up, and because the soul is too cowardly to command the body to die. My parents anchor me to this world, because I understand the agonies they have already endured, simply by being parents, and I cannot purposefully send that sort of sorrow and doubt and regret and pain into their hearts... while they alone live, I stay. They are the only people in the world whose love I can ever trust, and even there I shy away from truly working to know them as people, because I am afraid that like everyone else in all the world, if I begin to know them too deeply I will find them just as unable to truly and fully love me as all the rest of humanity. I would rather keep the child's sure naive certainty of a parent's love than risk the deeper knowing of them as people: the fear of losing it is far too great. They hold me here, chained to each breath.. .but if today, this minute, they were no longer, I would cease these utter nothings and leave this world that has nothing in it for me. I would run from the beating of my own heart as though the hounds of Hell pursued me. I would hope and pray there is no afterlife, no Heaven, no Hell, no reincarnation, but that it would be Oblivion to greet me when the last breath was done. I am lonely. I am alone. I am unwanted. I am worthless. I have nothing anyone wants for long. I think I find a love that circles round and round and brings joy to all, only building hope and security for all of us with every go 'round, and I am wrong. I am always wrong. I am always wrong. In the end, I bring nothing but sorrow to those I love, and do it by the very fact of loving them. Those I love, I cannot love less. Those I do not, I cannot love more. And neither of those is ever the right thing... is ever good enough... it is never enough. Nothing is ever enough. Nothing is ever right for very long... the years of my life spin by faster and faster and have become a few brief moments of real, golden happiness surrounded by forevers of bitterness and sorrow and unfulfilled longing. A life which began with such promise, such power & strength & beauty... has become such a sorrid comedy of always being wrong. The world.. Fate.. dangles hope in front of me like a small boy dangling a string in front of a kitten... who watches, waits, waits, and finally believing it is truly to stay within reach, pounces, batting out a paw to catch the elusive string... only to have the boy jerk it away. Laughing. Fate laughs at me, and it is not a kind laughter. Fate mocks me. I am a wrong thing. I should not be.