i feel like i am stuck lately. and as i look back on this past year i come to see, with all that has occurred, i haven't really allowed myself to flourish with the changes. it seems to me i am stubborn in swimming against my own tide. God only knows why because, allow me to tell you, it is quite exhausting. i have picked up some pretty lamentable habits that i am surely not proud of. which if i really step back and think about, isn't all that surprising as i am inconsistent as fuck. i haven't treated my body with an ounce of respect. i don't really take care of myself. it seems as though i have just perhaps the tiniest grip left before i slip completely. and i don't know if it is because here we are approaching a new year that has me looking backward, or if it is mere coincidence that i am noticing all of this. i suppose it doesn't matter the reason only that i am in fact aware of it. i keep saying "tomorrow..." or "next week" or "monday" i'll do better... i'll eat better...i'll honor my body... i'll let go of you...i'll stop talking... i'll stop letting people walk on me or call me impolite names... i'll hand it all back... i'll begin again. yet, what's stopping me? why am i continually delaying the inevitable? and i feel like i have written about all these emotions in the past, so it discourages me that i am still no where closer to understanding these things about myself than i was last year... fuck, two years ago. i've been thinking about him a lot, as usual. but lately a little more in depth, i suppose the holidays will do that to a person. it's just that i kinda feel as though i only allow myself to BE myself about 43% of the time. i play facade, i smile my plum-lipstick-smile and toss short yet witty remarks into typical conversation as i swallow my real words along with granulated happiness to trick myself into thinking everything is okay. all the while i am screaming inside. if i were to wipe off that hint of a grin and present myself as the true cynic i happen to be, people would flee. it's unfortunately just life. no? who wants to hear about how no matter the color of sky on Christmas Day, it's the color of coal to me? essentially it's just another day in a year without him but it still breaks my heart he's not here. and who wants to hear that i resent the fact that you pray for something completely nonsensical while my brother is dead? no one, that's who. so, i just keep it inside where it belongs and smile and people think they know me.
alternately, people seem to dance into my life with seeming ease and then leave just as elegantly. yet here i am scrounging to pick myself up and put it all back together. oftentimes i wonder why my life has always felt like a gruesome battle, a complex puzzle... for i feel as though i am continually at war with myself, perpetually trying to fit all the wrong pieces together.... and scratching my way through the rose garden day and i promise you, with where i'm at and what i have, i do the best i can.
the point is... i have decided that enough is enough. i think i am done with the wallowing, moping, feeling sorry for myself... how long can this go on? now, i need to actually put some effort into myself. nothing will change if i change nothing. ha. at this point in my life, i don't necessarily believe in new year's resolutions but i feel it is a good excuse to kick start myself into gear. why the hell not, right?
"look," she says "there..." her voice cascades up an octave like a whispering melody.
i follow the direction of her skinny arm to the cluster of 3 stars.
Orion's Belt... as if it is her first time seeing it; the magic never fades for her. there's a slight grin painted on her face and it is a beautiful sight to behold. trust me.
her eyes are buoyed to the sky and i watch her in sheer wonderment.
"did you know..." she tapers off and takes a pull on her cigarette. (i love when she begins a thought with "did you know")
"that Orion borders the Gemini constellation to the northeast?"
she knows i am a Gemini, not that it matters. neither of us are into Astrology... it's just that she knows. i envision her reading about Orion's Belt and as her green eyes skim across that piece of information, they light up like electricity... she keeps it in her pocket and takes it out at precisely the right moment; while we are standing under a blanket of sky, her and i.
why did she pick me to love like this?
we stand quiet, for dramatically stretched out moments, each lost in our own galaxies. the sky the color of burnt coffee. the peculiar December air kissing our exposed skin. i think of how she is the only human whom i could sit with in silence, for hours, yet feel as though i've just had the most incredible conversation.
she reaches for my hand just then, as if she can read my thoughts.
it's milky smooth and friendly. i want to take charge of her body and encapsulate her with mine, but i hesitate... i can sense she is somewhere deep. so i resort to tangling my fingers within hers... so she knows i'm here.
because, for her, that's enough.
4 places you've visited: 1. Dominican Republic 2. Puerto Rico 3. St. Maarten 4. St. Thomas
4 places you'd rather be right now: 1. my bed 2. my couch 3. my downstairs couch 4. chicago
4 things you don't eat: i will pretty much eat or at least try everything the only exception being : ketchup. fuck ketchup. 4 of your favorite foods: 1. Pizza 2. Shrimp Scampi 3. Cereal, in general 4. Cheese, in general. 4 TV shows you watch: 1. Gilmore Girls 2. Alaska the Last Frontier 3. House 4. Pretty Little Liars
4 things you're always saying: 1. "Fuck" 2. "ya know?" 3. "I feel like..." 4. "coffee time" borrowed from this cool chick, alissa
"Whiskey." she said, and it wasn't a fucking request. "What'll it be?" the barkeep inquired, "Something off the shelf or from the well?" "Does it look like I give a goddamn?" she spat back at him. Fumbling from pocket to pocket, she found a nearly empty pack of smokes and a matchbook now on its last legs. She knew better than to ask for permission, or an ashtray for that matter, it wasn't that kind of dive. To her surprise, her drink was delivered and the bartender didn't bat so much as an eyelash. Maybe her face said everything he needed to know. She ashed on the floor and took her first, of what was sure to be many shots that night. The whiskey bit and burned its way down her stomach. "Fuck..." she whispered under her breath. "You." her mind finished the sentence and she drained the glass. Bartender boy was already pouring another, it was that kind of bar, it was that kind of night, and the whiskey was the only salve for this kind of wound. – here
oftentimes i feel like the ghost of myself, haunting old places that used to hold meaning they no longer hold. i've been in the same place for so long now that the different eras of my life –different selves, are layered in a fine mist that builds up into a fog upon this town and glimpses of the past show through the cracks between the trees and houses like bits of old, peeling wallpaper; like falling autumn leaves. it's comfortable yet equally as oppressive.
a car drives by at midnight, as i lie awake in bed and i wonder... where are they going? where have they been?
and when i finally succumb to sleep, i have this reoccurring dream of a stranger with a familiar face. and the way he touches me is as if i am made of more than just skin. he tells me that the beautiful is always bizarre. and he is the only person i have ever encountered who seems to have the faintest idea of what i mean when i say a thing.
and i wonder...
i feel so young but at the same time, unspeakably aged. when i am silent, i have a monstrous thunder hidden inside of me. i dream, i dream so vividly yet when i wake, everything is black. i have to urge myself to notice when i am happy because i too often get caught in that sepia-colored gloom. i am paradoxically challenged.
i remember the day i first realized i don't know who i am. it was spring, and the rain came down in sheets with a relentless fury. i guess some may call it an epiphany, i suppose it was something like that. because, it's a strange phenomena to suddenly become aware that you just have no idea who you are. this person you have been living with for the last 25 years is a fucking complete stranger.
and i wonder...
because, it's been 609 days... and i don't know if i am any better off than i was on that gloomy day back in may? i am stuck in this philosophy where i know there is no God damn way of turning back – i know too much, reverting is not an option. but i have forgotten how to walk. my legs are made of clouds and i can't figure out how to progress...
laying on that bed, i felt as though my entire being was flowing like the influx of the ocean. half aware by the pull of the tide, yet drifting off with each passing swell. short jolts of semi-consciousness would drown me in the feeling of utter hopelessness. and then just as swiftly with the waves, i was swept back into pure, black, nothingness again.
i remember waking to the sound of rain. at first, i felt like i was just a little girl, wide-eyed and curious, like i was all those years ago, half riddled with sleep after a night of terrors. i pulled the dark red sheet up to my chin and only then did i realize i was not in my own bed... shadows of tears stained my rosy cheeks... the smell of blood and abandonment filled the unfamiliar room.
back then, i didn't realize the ransom that night would hold over me for many years to come. i was but a girl, 14 years old – bourbon in a teacup, soul full of vinegar and glitter. but my woman was stolen from me in a haze of starry sky whiskey and a boy in a leather jacket.
i was so full to the brim in shame i couldn't face myself... i faded away behind a constant veil i draped before me... those sharp corners of my mind became desolate gardens planted with prickly rose bushes and intimidatingly vast meadows i never dared enter. i would go on to make my own mistakes, plenty of them. each one seemingly worse than the last... but never would i allow another human to make one for me again. though, i wonder... if the stars were not so intoxicating that night... would i have never fallen in love with the moon?
now as i enter a chapter of my life where i am ready to explore the depths of myself, i find it still scares me to death to scratch my pale skin on the stone walls of my mind. when will i stop being frightened? when will the acquaintance with old ghosts stop agonizing me? where do i find the strength to voyage beyond the shadows of my mind and straight into the fucking abyss of it?
a friend of mine asked me today "who are you, what makes you... you?" it surprises, and intrigues me, these kinds of questions. the ones where i have to kinda step back for a moment and think about the answer instead of just blurting something inconsequential out. i thought for a minute and i told her that if i was being honest, i don't really know who i am... but i'm beginning to, and i like her... she scares me yet excites me all at once. but getting to know myself has been and will continue to be an adventure that, i think, will be ever-present.
after the conversation spilled into other topics and things got quiet again, i really began to mull it over. who am i? i have been struggling with this question for a very long time. these past few months have worn me out. once the frenzy of summer is over and the beautiful commotion we all make of October has expired... i am left with a lesser known November, callous and barren. the layers begin to peel away to reveal the bones that have been there all along but i habitually tend to cover up. i'm trying very hard to confront myself. to look at my heart and my face and my body and love her as i would love a friend. i see she is ruthlessly fidgety and hopelessly foolish. but i am working to sit and find beauty in what i can no longer hide. pondering the things i both love and hate about myself. she's unpredictable and stubborn. fierce and fiery... but really, at the end of the day, she's all i've got. so rather than lamenting over these things, i want to begin to look at her, to study these layers without flinching – without turning away. i want to be able to sit with myself, free of distractions and penetrate every facet that has been carved out these last 27 years... but, do you think that one can ever be entirely comfortable with oneself?
journal entry april 4 it happened. i was just sitting here on the couch, wearing my light pink tank top and listening to Phillip Phillips, minding my own god damn business. if i'm being honest, i felt it happening the last few days. this burning desire, a ball of fire lodged underneath my rib-cage... a profound pressure building. every touch, every sound.... my skin is made of electricity, pulsing in massive waves of static. i jump easily, but i smile easier at the same time. he says "hey beautiful" and i'm grinning, panting, utterly breathless for every single word that comes dancing from his lips. because everything he says to me is meaningful... and all i can think is... why? why on gods earth did he pick me?
"what are we gonna do when we're completely used to talking to one another all day every day? although, i think i already am. i miss you every night before i let you go, and then i missed you this morning until you let me know it was ok...
i go to work and i'm thinking of you. you would think doing this job in between talking to you might occupy my mind with something else but its unsuccessful. you've already taken me over. you could pretty much ask me to do anything for you right now and i would.
my body has been numb for days because the tingling doesn't stop and my heart is off the charts.
my head is in the clouds, and not only from the marijuana smoke, but from the buzz you've given me all over. the one you're feeling now.
can i continue? i'm on a roll..
i want to infuse my poetry into your soul just to know what it feels like to be one with an angel. nothing you do is going to peel me away from you, you've got me.
you've got me, baby, i'm helplessly in love with everything about you and i don't regret saying it. and i don't regret letting it happen.
"you should have seen what she was wearing the other day."
"yeah, she's just wicked weird, did you see that picture she posted?"
i'm sitting on a high stool, one leg tucked underneath me, my back against the wall. sipping on quite the splendid glass of pinot noir – just listening, observing this idle talk. i swirl the crimson liquid in the glass like my mother taught me, and watch as the thin legs of the wine creep down the side of it. lost more in my own thought than this mundane talk. but i have a sudden urge to speak something and perhaps it's the wine but i do.
"isn't this all kind of frivolous?" i don't divert my eyes, i look at each of them.
one chuckles and asks what the word means. another looks blank-eyed back at me. the other one makes a harmless yet snide remark about me. "how do you know these words?" in the tenor of someone who feels threatened. not by someone who is intrigued. assholes.
"i read." that's all i say.
they brush me off. which, i have come to accept as a gift rather than punishment at this point. i just smile and nod my head almost as if to say "yeah, i'll shut up now." yet inside i am screeching! but, it's futile... i hold onto it, but let it go.
there are times, and this has been occurring more often than not, when i sit in my head and i cannot, for the life of me, fathom why these are the kinds of people i associate myself with.
please do not misinterpret. i do not think i am smarter than anyone simply because i may have a more diverse vocabulary. nor do i think i am a better person because i choose not to participate in simple-minded gossip. i do however feel compelled to have thoughtful conversations. i am an intellectual for fucks sake... and i shouldn't feel abashed by that.... because, god damn, i am proud of my intelligence – i earned it.
let's talk about life, lets talk about death, literature, art, music, poetry, film. give me the ingredients to what makes your heart come to life, tell me how you want to leave your mark on this world. lets discuss religion and ideas of the afterlife, of this world, tell me what your stance is on anything with relevance. and sure, lets drink wine and giggle and be the silly girls we always will be – but hell, give me substance. give me more than empty words and shallow thought-processes.