you press your hand into mine – an immeasurable gift; i trace your still-tiny toes as they tuck up against my belly under the blanket — you smile some knowing smile i know not when you grew into – some bundle of knowledge that has blown through your brain ; i look at you and sometimes astonish myself with how large you seem, how grown up – the maturity just beginning to peak out in the smallest of features, the way you look when you’re concentrating on a problem, the tuft of your nose beginning to sharpen your features ever so slightly – the small mannerisms of language you add to acknowledge awkwardness or self-awareness of your own social foible (i cringe at this awareness, as i prayed you’d never have to meet it) ;; your giggle still sounds full toddler-abandon, when i get you to belly laugh from way beyond social convention , you still gaze in awe and wonder at beautiful things, ask for rainbows, sing to your stuffed animals, the sweetest pitch of a voice climbing over a perfect hill — you still ask for snuggles, greet my hand with welcome, nuzzle on to my leg — but you tell me you know things too, when i remind you of them ; you start to wander down your own path, when we walk together in the woods ; you start to groan when i ask you how your day was ; sometimes i even feel the first twinge of embarassment from you when i ask hold you at just too public of a moment — you grow up and out and away and towards, and still i know the love i have showered all over you was the best thing i have ever done with my life ; still i know it comes up endless and endless, and it will never stop being my greatest accomplishment : loving you, and watching you grow just your own way
((a little late in posting))
2019 in all its fumbling beauty. to moving you in to your new place, the aisles of target, the tumbling new objects up new stairs; the excitement of new carpet and a room that is yours. winter discoveries in big tan chairs; snuggles and laughter – we giggled at Matilda at the walnut street theatre; Aida, the cold chasing us up river rd to lambertville, Karl, singing in the car, false eyelashes, black wig, warm dancing feet — super bowl party in Manhattan stumbling out of a shower; 12 seconds to judgment at the arden and fabulous hot dogs; valentines day in philly in a dusty little comedy show ; to austin and roaming about, vegan ice cream cones and sunsets on the water while the bats nestle under the bridge; chasing buses and mapping uphill new city names;; march and the world beginning to unfurl slowly, slowly — key west and this bikeride i took across the island while the sun dipped under the horizon – when i chased it to try to find where the moon was hiding the stars; when i pulled myself out onto a dock deep into the water and watched midnight blue all around me settle onto the dust of the oceantop — open call equity auditions — my first extra work – marvelous mrs. maisel and the deuce, early morning crack of dawn arising; the pancake of makeup, the curl and rush of hair and costume, creation and waiting, huge spinning lights and wheeling cameras — our silly little lawyer commercial, on a cold day in the middle of nowhere: discovering jim thorpe on a magical st. patrick’s day festive day, the glow of a fire outside a beautiful set of buildings pulling themselves out of a mountainside matthew’s 21st birthday and our bareburger + bar extravaganza; rehearsing for judas iscariot and pure medea at the same time – flying my way to philly and back to the little shed at the edge of the delaware river back and forth as the sun peeled the earth back into spring; and the drop, the shock of Benny April 8th — the way the world spun on its head in the middle of the magic gardens and i could feel all the creation around me reflecting some sorrow i didn’t know how to digest yet – your funeral doused in music and covered in photos, laughter, tears; the tears, the endless tears that seemed to go on and on past the human body’s ability to make them // judas iscariot and the layers of beautiful planks that formed the beautiful set we all dressed ourselves with ; the words, the rich words, the beautiful people, the aching creation ;; the end of game of thrones and writing and writing endlessly;; pure medea and the rough-hewn brick room that housed our words, all our beautiful rehearsal spaces carved out of this precious city, the hollowing back of my projected monologues, the love of dancing in the street while you sang falling slowly to me, and i twirled around in a purple dress and a bow in my hair on my birthday – you gathered up the reasons you loved me and wrote them down for me; we laughed playing corn hole in old city – we danced on cinco de mayo in a fabulous whirlwind of mirrors and philly frills (we danced always); on father’s day too, in a little bundle of stones in the city and tossed our father stories into the wind; i flooded myself back to the city, in hot upstairs rehearsal rooms and in a tiny little blackbox in Mayfair – All This Intimacy – a helmet strapped to my belly to form a pregnant belly, thai food in the rain, and barcade + garage and celebration ; jamie turning 5 in a pirate party [hot tub laughter and secret hitler late in to the night] Bloody Bloody and friendship; laughter and cardgames and sleeping on haybales in a huge, hot barn; the july air wakening us in the morning to come to life – to sing, to dance, to pound our hearts into a stage we built, and unbuilt. to Church + State – our magical commercial, stuffing amazing meats into our mouths, dripping with sweat and tasting the view of bucks county from atop an old tower; to san diego, racing through dry hillsides, telling my dad to stop working over hard kombucha in a bar in ocean beach, to brother dan, to sunsets and shaking lemons from a lemon tree; to august warmth wrapped me like a pair of solid hands – langhorne players dancing around us, the old firmaments too solid to be shaken when you climbed inside the doorway that could barely fit you – the stonework and wood gone moldy still holding our laughter in, our good work, our good efforts and listening – the cohesion of us 4. to Photography. new work and scary work – facing fears, getting comfortable, playing the part until i was the part – of photographer, ready to create, ready to face any task. finding the light, finding myself in the strangest of circumstances – rising to them. finding myself unsure and answering the question for myself. finding myself delivering on promises, building myself up; taking risks, working hard, carving out my own career by myself — to vermont – skating up through the mountains, surprising casey with love, laughing in the rain with boxes full of vermont cider, giggling down the state to woodstock – to vegan ice cream cones and sweet bowls of noodles, wander feet and gushing streams over exposed roots, tumbling back home towards the sunset – no one needing us anywhere but the road — to september, moulin rouge and jeremy’s wedding, to jamie beginning school – a soft september walk up to the new yellow school bus, all new, so new ; to september rolling forwards like a bad dream, Cat on a Hot Tin Roof and the amazing friendship of Matt, the blessed words i got to speak, the great work we got to do, the wonderful play we got to engage in, indian food and a room in the newtown methodist church, the beautiful newtown theatre opening up like a woven tapestry of wood and new memories — my phone getting stolen out of my bag, the emotional wave of fire and ice – the capsized boat – the turntable of reality — the words i got to wish out of my mouth – the head and the heart, nahko, the rennaissance faire, halloween come clean and glowing for me , tunneling down some lambertville street, laden in costume and taffy sweet jamie smiles — november come like a swarm of bees – tia’s party in all the glistening gold, Cabaret and this new set of souls to swim with ; old friends and new friends and new pants and laughter and strange ramblings through hun school gamblings – thanksgiving rattling down to pittsburgh, my brother and i singing songs all the way down the turnpike and back; to december, red hair, rolling wishes, dear evan hansen and jagged little pill and laughing fever-dreamed sleepovers, half-baked christmas cookies and josh over for christmas day; laughing and games and something framed by the word family, cold, hobbling and wind whipped searches for a tiny house; new year’s eve back in your arms, laughing all the while
but who knows your soul like i do and who writes fire like i do / whose eyes see the magic in you and the magic in me and how our minds touch just so – how our bodies line up just so – the way ours do when we press into each other in the midnight light — because ours do; ours do
it’s christmas and i miss you, of course. i feed my heart through a tube, i pull my musculature sideways through doors that used to fly open; i push through the melancholy; i miss your hands, the way my hand fit in yours, i miss your shoulder, and my head resting on it, i miss your laugh and the way your eyes light up when i say something that makes you laugh; i miss the way we get one another
this day won’t last forever; this moment won’t last forever; but here you are, 5 years old and curled up in my legs, all of our limbs reaching towards one another, in love; we look in to each other’s eyes like lovers – you ask for me to stay forever, i know it will never be hard for me to promise; the very best thing i’ve ever done; i bundle you, your little soft hair rubbing under my chin, a sickness in your chest that i can feel in my own body;; two everythings beating together
so much gratitude to be had; so much perspective; so much learning to be had – every day, the great unfolding, every day, partnering myself, holding my self close and teaching myself about how i want my life to be; about how i want to be – endlessly more patient, more loving; how i am doing so little if i am accomplishing personal goals but creating disharmony with the people around me; giving my life as a healer, in service to those around me; this should be the greatest accomplishment i focus on
i am thankful for my body in all its parts, strength and athleticism; thankful for my heart, it’s endless loyalty; thankful for my heartbreak, the way it keeps teaching me
How the years have pulled me like a sideways cloud; drifting penniless through the aching twirl of new autumns gone by; how, when I was 12, I pressed my fresh footed boots into this soil ; cut my heart on the sides of tree branches ; placed promises to what I would be into the mud ; how we walked, we laughed, we gasped at the feelings that arose in our body like new strangers come to rest inside of us ; How we prayed for love like tattoos on our flesh ; wondering how free we’d get to be when we were no longer 13 ; stuck in the middle of a flesh hurricane ; a puberty pressure pressing us into the sidewalk like daisy chains into cement / a love letter written with mascara on a pillar of marble / How many times I walked down this path pressing some name onto my lips like a ritual ; an obsession with setting myself away from the line of squares that lined up geometrically ; and when the bell rang. how I filled my pockets with acorns; or laid in the dirt under the stars and giggled until I knew how to giggle in a way that was socially appropriate ; how I learned to tuck my hair behind my ear ; pull a ribbon into it ; check my makeup in the mirror ; how I learned to girl, to woman, to grow and to shrink; how we best friended down the woodland path ; how our lives stretched out in 1,000 different directions: my friends, my friends ; and what I didn’t know ; what I didn’t know ; how to recognize the sound of the wind; the sound of my child’s laughter; the sound of my heart beating against the waves of some distant shore // When holy meant the edge of the forest path because the forest was unwalked; unknown; or if I had walked it – the small space it covered in this small town was a wild mystery large enough in itself to span several countries in the imagination ;; when sacred was the tiny comfort of being seen by two small eyes on a lonely big world not big enough for me yet
The light turns buttery ; fringes through the branches ; curls light green at the edges ; the forest is sending postcards // today the stream is laughing awe-filled laughs;; each drop a silent memory released ;; the drip-drop humble hands, the tips of branches gone dry into the restless pool of water beneath it;; begs for something shallow , cool , irreverent ;; something to bathe itself in ; the coolness everywhere peels back the saturation , the vibrance , the funnel of summer colors that reach towards the endless blue ,, everything pulls away; pulls back in on itself; chlorophyll like a half remembered promise — passing through for today ; a cheat day today; the cheap linen cues cascading around the bushels of greenery like a half-assed acceptance / here and there the color windows / just here and there it seems it pulls back from the world / like a frozen lullaby , like a soft beautiful virus , metastasizing slowly , effortlessly [ with great ease ] no makeup, no care for presentation, just a bunch of old roots sending messages up the tree willy nilly – an optional RSVP at this point in the season,, a forged signature, a foraged bundle of new paints, a slow attempt at learning a new skill // fall never comes in the cascades of color pops that adorn some windows 97 screensaver;; it comes in oceanic waves, subtley, inconsistently – never quite fully satisfied or in cohesion across the forest, each little drummer beating its own autumn tune at its own pace — the natural drumbeat of release,, always somehow in tune with itself,, unplayable by me, far too many harmonies, this perfectly strung chord, impossible to replicate, just above sonically recognizable, but breaktaking to hear
radioactive love, this mountain of moving music // the miles from my eyes to yours ;; the stretched distance which becomes thin upon listening / the curvature of sound which never makes it from my lips to yours / the desperation of angled skin cells ; hunting for one another ; like a desolate skeleton of love once-discarded ; always buried ; never burned ; ashen in cruelty ; and firmly, fearlessly;; still alive
Because love in its unending rapture fills me to the brim ;; my pockets carved like perfect stones formed out of words still left hanging in the air by blossoms hurling themselves into the atmosphere — like the sound of September sinking in the water // consume, consume, roll slowly, the endless air perfectly round // capsize at the edge of a tongue / the syllable of a sound forming ; word-forming breath ; forming heart-shaped lullabies floating in the air ; capturing love songs like whispers ; like momentary vibrations ; like artery strings (guitar-somethings) ,, the wild assassination of the leaves ,, the blackberry surprise of the day winding and unwinding — the plant sprouting seed-birthing no-seed listening to the end of the season — it’s still tucked tight into the sound your tongue is making against the back of your teeth ;; The firm seed growth pocket in the dirt of your gums – a growing thing;; I love the words that love to wind their way through the wind;; towards the effortless fist of your heart never clenched
Terrible black magic this thing called Love ;; terrible white-hot heat this thing called heart — fire in the lungs, earthquake in the mind, terrible fascination , this rapture for romance — terrible trick of the light, these wide-eyed trusting eyes I have ,, terrible tricks of the light and dark ; terrible illusions the delusions of grandeur and points on the map hunting towards anything other than regret ; hopeless eyes, hopeless eyes, thundercrack goodbyes and all the promises to never keep
at first the pain was just too sharp to even write,, the edge began to peel off slowly — but the singe still feels hot to the touch and my insides are still a garbled bag of misplaced organs. heartbreak happens mostly in the stomach.
the rich soil of my indignation; the reticence of the new world spinning forward – the force of electricity through my skin – back through underground tunnels from my heart to yours — the burrowing promises / hide in the soil / friendship lingering around the sound of a couple of decades; over the Long island sound ; over the sunset peeking over the top of the horizon ; the waves lap against the side of this promise House // two intertwined in the promised Land. And now the flash of my everything – purple flower days unraveling like so much September light getting light at the edges ;; fringes turning foggy , Gray good morning dew hustling back the old season and clamoring towards the coldness we all await // the colors receding like so many promises let go
we barrel down the little avenue we live on ;; across the old stoney bridge ; across the canal ; the walk is just two blocks but today it feels like an eternity // the golden 8 a.m. morning light splashes through the still-summer trees // we trip along together at a clip ; being positive ; being brave, the both of us ;; I turn my face every time it scrunches up into tears and try to hollow my voice anytime it sounds shaky or gravely ;; I tell him he’s going to have so much fun. You lurch when I let go of your hand to take a picture; holding it out desperately; like a prayer for me to clasp back on. Suddenly, the big yellow cat of a bus pounces next to us on the sidewalk ;; the moment is brisk : the line is filing : the older children are ready. You are the last one on;; your eyes filled with a mixture of awe, excitement, sheer terror and absolute love. You hold on to my index finger until the last possible moment ;; until you’re almost ascending the second bus step; you climb; hurdle; tumble over yourself with the weight of your backpack // you walk halfway down the rows of bus seats until the red-haired mop of a fellow kindergartener in the front calls at you to ask you to sit with him ;; i watch you turn around and hurry towards the front ;; the bus lurches forward like a monster and peels away into the golden morning light; instantaneously; [it happens in about 45 seconds] and my heart is broken at the fault line / I can’t stand the feeling of without you. I pedal around the house / I feel the absence of you everywhere // I have loved all the endless arrays of 45 seconds laid on top of one another that I have gotten to share with you // I have loved the moments that have brought us to this day // I have loved the last 5 years / I try not to cry in front of the other parents / I try not to cry all day / I know you will be okay. I am so grateful that I get to be your mom.
The summer escaped through my fingertips like honey-ed sunflower-seed wine // your little hair gets filled with light — gets filled with knots — and all the afternoons I got to roll dice with you and move trolls across board game boards are worth more to me than anything else I could ever accomplish. I need nothing else. Nothing else makes as much sense as spending time with you. Thanks for the last 5 years.