Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Letter for a December Baby


in a copy of Hamlet purchased at a used book store, tucked between the pages of Act Four.

Letter for a December Baby

You’ll like being the girl that listens to jazz and languidly floats thought out the open bathroom window on puffs of cigarette smoke. You’ll find yourself happiest like a moving painting with no speech- all image and form. These quiet, winter night hours when you haven’t spoken a word- just glided through your apartment like a ghost touching where and when you want. Expressing the supreme form of solitude that will drive your desire to reenter humanity feeling like you have a richness to offer, a texture gained from opiate night visions when the world seems to be only a canvas of your imagination. Yes, a shell of eyes and breasts and legs and color, but far from the ill connotation of emptiness. Your shell, an oyster even, taking in the small particles of a scientific world and rolling them around in silky nacre, all in preparation for a hardening, an anticipation for the transfer from your fleshy pieces of warm sanctuary to a reality where you wildly insist there lies hope for their beauty.

You will not always be this girl.

But tonight, and for now, it is the particular season of your life.

Friday, October 29, 2010

a story for a year 2006-2010

the thrill is gone, she said

the thrill is gone she said to me
on the street as i passed by
and the shrillness of it haunted me all the way home
my mind went searching for a response to her accusation.
elaborate fantasies:
(the slippery, forceful, wet throws of sex
or the stop you in your tracks reverse the car and go get the girl)
when you are eight you are a princess in a fairy story
fifteen, sneaking out in your boyfriends first car
twenty and the wild ride of testing freedom sans the true heavy crown of adulthood,
twenty six becomes a candlelight bourbon in a studio
straddling the fence.
on one side lusty, youthful memories almost close enough to touch
(like breath that appears and fades when the heat from your mouth hits the cold air)
but the other side?
it is a fence now after all
meant to protect valuables
a reminder to build the border of territory

and then thirty? forty? fifty? shrill warning cries on the street at strangers...
at a certain age
is it still charming to believe in runaway nights and sticky stars?

i can only answer her
the thrill is not gone, not gone. no no no
you simply must make the choice to hold on to it,
although learn to keep it politely hidden away at parties.



i love more quietly now.
not any less intensely, no
don't be mistaken
the waters of my heart are ever as powerful
as they were;
but they churn at new sapphire levels,
close the core of the earth, where stone is forged,
no longer lingering toward the surface
where gusty wind becomes the fierce, quick master.
i am keeping my currents grounded
so that now, over time,
the continents of my life will be moved in the name of Love:
shaped by patience and time,
rather than the whims of an Aeolus-like god.



always at this time, never fails. i find myself in tears. because? ...
the leaves are changing in birmingham and the air is crisp. my mother is making tortilla soup. the front door is open and the mid day pours in while i nap on the couch to the ambient noise of a humming ceiling fan and the football game my father is watching in the other room. a kitty stretches on the floor in the beams of sunlight. there is a pumpkin on the front porch and my sister is not so far away. my car is parked in the cul-de-sac in front of our house and i love feeling the leaves crunch under my feet, because i never take the sidewalk. i hear the kitchen chairs slide across the hardwood floor. i smell the cinnamon from my mother's spiced candles, and when the phone rings it is a childhood friend that i can embrace in mere minutes. i feel the peace of being wrapped in familiarity and love, along with the chenille blanket that is always invitingly draped across the edge of the sofa. i am languid, warm, and safe. i am home in autumn, with quiet eyes and waterless cheeks.


divorce (or the beginning of the end of the beginning)

the pictures are already coming off the walls,
vacant spots,
stray nails with no purpose.
just a reminder of structures once designed with reason
but the use is lost.
all that’s left are meaningless parts
missing the whole,
forshadowing the ultimate deconstruction.


why am i surprised?
i don’t even like to write in pen
too stark
too permanant
too ominous.
now the delicacy of pencil lead-
the fragile marks on clean paper,
never pushing the pressure: needing to be ever present.
only leaving traces of thought in beautiful smoky strokes,
somehow wisely owning the transitory nature of life.
is where i find some comfort.


my mother called.
the tree she planted when i was born
blooms every april,
white blossoms
for 22 years.
this year
they all bloomed pink.


ladies night

i drink too much wine, a little green tea, and stay up too late talking, reading beautiful books, and thinking too much. i take off all my clothes and lay in bed, feeling my body merge with sheet and soft mattress.shedding. listening to the hum of ceiling fan and lull of synthetic ocean waves.mmmmm that stillness in the cycle of one day which has ended, merging into another. dawn is a funny time. one window frame ripe with possibilities. is it wrong to find something you could weep over everyday? everyday i feel like something lands on me, i am so taken. a look, a song, a touch- leaves me so full i don't know what to do with it. can i do what i was meant for? can i accept the hugeness of it? i hope so. but i have to start DOING so more often. i let many things fall to the wayside...to be so passionate i sure can be lazy. and that is dangerous. especially if i want the privilege of making a living as an artist in this world.

grad school

"what we usually call 'developing one's talent' is nothing more than freeing it from the influences that hamper, occlude, and frequently destroy it entirely."
-michael chekhov

to burn that deeply, to live a life so scared and so open that you can wail and thrash and love so immensely, so true. to spark a light in the darkness with your tears and determination. to not let this world own the last thing you can hold dear, your ability to love and live more than you fear. when are we able to regain our lost right? ...frozen by ambition and projected insecurities...when can we give in? and just melt. invoking strength, but not strong like cold steel, or stone. strong like liquid; like water forging through time in its rage of freedom... opening our guts to be pulled forth into the web of humanity we often ignore: not owning our talents as reflections of ego, but truly offering ourselves up as vessels. we end up destroying the gifts that were meant to be our contribution to this world by indulging in fear.


Friday, June 11, 2010

Ode for the Occasional Insomniac (aka: the dreamers)

Well, it may sound trite, but life is so beautiful to me that a lot of times I can’t sleep because I just don’t want to let go of it. As if I stayed awake longer it would stop time from taking the present moment away, which in actuality I know full well it is perpetually doing. It just doesn’t seem true until I drift off and close my eyes… and then when they open again it’s as if they are reacting to the loss- like at the exact moment that I am swindled of a bit of that nectar of life my body instinctively responds, propelling me into attention- begging me to yell, “stop thief!” But in reality, the tectonic plates are shifting under our feet at the pace with which our fingernails grow; time acting in correlation (not being kind enough to rob us with such a gift of swift awareness, but rather sneaking in at such a steady and consistent rate that we begin to recognize the tortoise as a bit of the antagonist in that old Aesop’s fable). I suppose I could go into the Grasshopper and the Ant or The Fox and the Grapes now, but enough analogy for one night, no? At a certain point we must all resign to the Master Pirates of dewy youth- Sleep and Time: cruel enough to take with no discrimination and yet romantic enough to keep fondly provoking the hollows of our mystery regarding hearts.

Friday, May 14, 2010

one more group of three

repetition. repetition. variation.
the three of comedy.
and yet, i read the things i have written at fifteen, nineteen, and since the glory of facebook...even just three years ago. and i feel every moment of everything i composed in the past. i could write it again with the same fingers tip tapping out the arial font- clickity click clack. with the same ache and joy. working by moonlight and wrapping my thoughts in the thick, velvety blanket of night...posing queries like i have never met a lick of melatonin in my small, earthly existence.
the question becomes: is this humorous?! well, i suppose i should find the comedy in my life...so thank you, gods of memory and of media. i am now laughing with the constellations, and it's definitely the best kind of raucousness- straight from the belly.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Julie and Julia

I watched the movie tonight for the first time. Yes, I am late to join in on these things. Yes, I was richly rewarded for the wait. The performances, oh yes, the performances. But the words, the wine, the saturated beauty of every single puzzle piece that went into this inspiring and genuine story. Delicious.

I love that Julia Child wanted to change the world with her cooking, with her words of cooking. Oh, the pages upon pages of carefully articulated results yielded from the art of trial and error! She laughs while packing up the box (holding her eight years of work) to send to her publisher for approval as if it is so naive to hope and wish that she could do something that could change the world. It is what we all want, isn't it? To inspire, yes, but I really believe it is ultimately, to share. That is why we story tell- weaving our webs with whatever malleable substance we can get our mortal hands on- words, paints, clay, treble clef or bass, numbers, protractors...seeking the art of living, of telling the story we are pursuing. However, it is the sharing that matters most. It isn't real until it is shared. The result matters, but not because IT actually matters, but because it can be passed on.

This is why I love language, cooking, wine, and music.... the laughter that comes from a warm kitchen while stories are exchanged and palates are satiated and pleasured. And to think all of this can happen, and it CAN change people's lives. This is why I loved this movie, because it links hope with ordinary life. Now, I know that everything in comparison with this movie is not so simple, or pretty, or perfect- but jeez, it does happen every once in a while! Make a personal vow to take in a little more- that little bit of hope in you to work on a dream- that little bit of heaven in a slow cooked meal- that conversation that suddenly extends until dawn. Simply put: let's savor our stories. Put it on simmer and let it goooooooooooo.......

Monday, March 15, 2010

It's been a long time

Since I rock and rolled yea! (insert bad ass guitar riff here)
Thank you Led Zeppelin for leading me off...
It has been a long time. And i promise to write more soon. But for now, a short synopsis:
Get in line to ride a roller coaster in your favorite outfit on a first date but make friends with the other people about to get on the ride, second guess your decision fifteen times while you are waiting, step into the attraction with caution and exhilaration, immediately enjoy the thrill of the ride as it starts, twist and turn with confidence, suddenly throw up on your new date, become mortified, watch your date leave, then unexpectedly become surrounded with support by the new friends you made in line who were luckily just on the ride too and totally understand. Swish your mouth out with some diet coke, and climb on another ride with some awesome new people. You might throw up again, or you might ace it this time. But it's worth a try...that is why you came to amusement park, after all. To ride the rides, not sit on the bench and eat cotton candy.

I hope that can sum it up for now.
That, and a favorite quote by Galileo:
"I have loved the stars too fondly to be fearful of the night."