i, rabbit horn, sea monster, rattle death – i call sadness into my ribcage to light fire to my heart. i mourn the afternoons bathed in autumn light through the rose curtains. i mourn the ring of singing voices in hollowed tree stumps. i fear the bones of winter crackling towards the sky without relent. i fear the branches; the harness of the sky to the earth. i fear myself. i search myself. i become more of myself. i grow in to being a teacher – giving strength, welling patience, harnessing words. i hark to the light. to the purpose that petals my feet forward. i hollow towards the light. i hear my own whispers; i repeat action and action and action and i rest not wearily enough. i hunger, i rattle, i raise. i reach towards the light – i keep reaching.
rattle frames – art museum condenses me into hue – into paint and form / radiance and reflection // little boy rattles the air with laughter, grandfather sits with wise blue eyes, smiling softly, curling hands, 2 flannel shirts stacked on top of one another – warm bones. mama takes our legs through unbuilt houses – heaps of wood and thin board, rattling together like skeletons – november wind whipping through strange windows of rolling plastic sheets: my childhood comes back in an instant – all the half-finished crater houses spelunk-ed in our rapshackle, ticky-tacky development – the only tradition my family had. the only pastime. we’d hobble along the cul-de-sac and curbed, mowed fences to a shamble of bones lying wasted in the winter air – a house being constructed — unstable, something that would rattle in the wind
and here december turns ash of our flame / i was walking up a creaky set of stairs and i fell back in love instantly / and my hands ring around the rosie, and my pockets are full of gaseous and nosey words, and my heart is full of window panes and light-rivers / my school chatters and sings, bulges at the walls and sews together little bits of things lost and remembered / my heart pounds and dashes, dots, dots, dots along the path
and the smell of burning rocks – rocks with fire twisted up inside them / water steaming life from life / words pounded into drums, drums pounded into hearts, bodies swollen with honesty, feet trenched in mud and vulnerability / and the full moon glazing, and the full fire blazing, and the hollow of a hut holding sixteen people tight – and the mountain of song spilling out, and the cheer of bones against muscle, and the sweat – the sweat – the sweat dripping off every curve, every hollow / and the spill of water into pit, into steam, into conscious breath, into no breath possible, into breath into a sweater and stay low to the ground, stick your finger out of the tiny hole in the hut, gulp the winter air onto your skin and the heat – the heat – the heat / and the release – the gash of air tunneling your body, finally, finally – heart melting / exposed, ravenous / blanketed on leaves, naked skin against winter dirtearth – leaf bed, full moon canopy of black-branched labyrinth streaming towards the sky – streaming towards the sky – steaming towards surrender – and the surrender, the surrender, the surrender – the will power, the achievement, the strength – the release of ego – the release – the sweat, the swell, the season, the surrender, the sublime, the sacred, the sanctuary, the summit; the sound of everything
scoop me up, november wind. tussle me around like these burnt, brown leaves. leave me alone, big wind. leave me alone, biting chill, hungry coats, scratchy hats, bottomed out boots and swollen socks. leave me alone, coming cold and bottle necked branch billow breezes
saddle me with love – love the backsides of my knees, the places where my skin curls into freckle, the turn at the base of my skull where hair meets air. and i too, love the minutiae of waking up – of turning on the cellular limitations of liminal space, of devoting myself to loving every day, everyday. to at least attempt to find the glow of love at least momentarily – everyday.
I don’t mind the Instagram-ed glorification and beautification of life (if done right) because it is precisely feeding a hunger our society needs – the sacred versus profane – crossing the liminal space to the magic realism of everyday – providing perspective to the mundane moments of our life – honoring aesthetic everywhere – honoring the beauty of our lives everywhere – finding the sacred in the profane and lifting it up – elevating moments of life that otherwise slip by – consciously cultivating an awareness and reverence towards the formed beauty of our lives splayed out – dabbing art here and there – crossing the boundary lines between prose and poetry; between the pastoral and the profound daily. a meditation, a practice, a transformative tool for creating guerrilla art in everyone’s hands (just please don’t waste it only on selfies, dear friends and lovers)
just show me the way. just show me the way. show me what matters to me, how to attain it – show me what i am – how to be it, how to find it. how to hang holly above the door and bless a space. show me what sacred space is, how to make room for it. show me where my soul is – how to poke it with a stick. show me what i love, how to love it. how to honor it. how to feel it beating inside my chest. how to stay organized, clear, resonant. how to light a candle and let it burn. how to be patient with children who have chaos in their bones. how to quell, how to find that meaningful. how to show that. how to show up, everyday. how to be more of myself. to find more of myself. to not be afraid. show me what i love and how to share it. how to give it. how to become more of myself.
engender my body with gesture – with the movement to move, the courage to soothe, engesture my body with gender // with the firmament to fulfill a role already rolled out of the dice / wrap me up in the wrapture of my hormones; my genital fever ; my general fear of forgetting the way i am supposed to be presenting // present me : the present prescience of my perennial pubescence (the purpose of all that period blood) // hinder me, little wheel looking for a quixote – for the quixotic narcotic of hormone that makes my body moan ; twist ; contort ; retort and rotate and tolerate | so | much | bullshit — give it to me, girls parts ; tutu hearts – too, too heartfelt; too, too full of heart – you feel too much – you feel too much little girl — be like me little girl, stuff it. be like a man little girl, swallow it whole. devour feelings for lunch. let them fill you up with bone and anger and muscle and cartilage and ledges to lean over (not jumping, just leaning, just trust me — not jumping, just leaning; not learning, just pumping, just thumping – just trust me). let them fill you up – you’ll expand; balloon outwards; topple over yourself with musculature and strain; your chest will puff up – puffin-wide and proud – you’ll look remarkable – you’ll look large – you won’t have to feel it at all – you’ll look large – you won’t have to feel it at all – you won’t have to fear it at all – just fill yourself up with it. keep it safe in your intestinal tract. don’t trust anyone, little girl. all the men you see will have a lifetime of feelings bottled tight in their intestinal tract, don’t you see? stay smart. don’t wear your heart on your sleeve. that’s the smart way to do it – you’ll stay safe. you’ll keep everyone out. you’ll keep everyone out. you’ll keep everyone out.
isn’t that quaint – she isn’t afraid to feel. how adorable.
what a brave little fool.
exhale, little girl, exhale. let the world drain through you / pipe dreams, river songs, musket fire of mosquitos on the lane /
same canal, but the greens have been sapped and the oranges pulled out of luminance – the yellows curl inwards from the edges and miniature piles begin to curdle themselves on the top of the water. things beginning to pool, to flesh themselves out onto the top, to come to fruition and reminisce together. to bask. to release. always, to release.
am i ready for what’s happening in my life? no, almost certainly not. will i rise to meet it? i will try. i will try to release in to it – like the brave piles of leaves that let go.
how can i possibly begin to place these moments in boxes and send them down the river? do i have to? do they flow inwards, towards the ever-present me, perhaps/ and not outwards – endlessly away, as our imagery always seems to say?
the show ended and we hung our coats up and i placed an orange peel on a beige mantel and we peeled our pictures off the mirror (careful not to break the tape) and we wrote out thank you’s scribbled in jibblejargon pen speed and we gave gifts that fit sweet memories and we toasted lines that we were glad to let slip back down our throats and i cherished a few that i loved to spit out of my tongue and little green grapes got gobbled up and bang-crackle doors got closed. and i am grateful once again. grateful for the laughter, for the words, for the challenge, for the spitfire brain focus, for the growth, for the gift. for the gift. always grateful for the gift placed before me.
and michaelmas too – a swing of gravity pulling autumn light towards me – fragile light, dappled, angling, subtle, cool // the marigold dipped silks hanging limp and dancerly on the string tied between two oak trees. the ground splattered in acorn halves, children’s feet and the first few leaves. golden all around, golden all around. and laughter and little eyes clutching at golden light. and apples halves and quartered – and wheat flour floating in petaled clouds under the trees – bread dough rising in the morning – cobwebbed oven burning bright with captured light (fire or glow or autumn heat meeting october in the morning). and child hands rolling balls of dough into beads of bread. and family hands holding graceful lines from sweetness to sweetness. golden light, autumn breath, windly twists of trunks of trees growing tall, little child hands, little child laughter growing tall, little child hearts growing thick with golden light. plant a heart, water it with light, let it turn golden in the oven, let it rise, let the dough rise – do not fear; the days will always glow warm inside the light.
all i really care about is if i can see the glint of 3pm sunshine meandering through the pine needle canopy and how the golden light is pressing itself through chlorophyll on the side porch. all i want at night is to sleep on the screened in porch so that the swarm of insect chorus can lull me to sleep and rouse me with the new light. the friendship of singing swells. all the world really wants me to do is watch it. notice it. be with it. listen to it. and honor it. like a friend. like myself – in a thousand trillion pieces around me. the branch my sister, my friend, myself. and on to itself – the light – the thousand trillion pieces of light dancing rhythmfeet. bodies – like bodies of light // light – like bodies of death and undeath. like dream marbles falling out of the mouth of the sky // like rain bodies finding flight // finding light and light-ness and gravity // like gravity, like autumn, like 7pm, like yearning // like yearning is all we’re supposed to do – the only truth we’re supposed to swallow like light // like darkness is a river i am always swimming, like lightness is not a dichotomy but a body – like my body is always both at the same time – the river, the swimming, the rain, the evaporation, and where the river is a constant in a flood of variables and equations equating signs for symbols — like bodies — like shapes — like translation of form into meaning — like my body translating itself from light to shadow // contrast and lux making imaginary imagery immortal in mortality // like words pressed against one another like bodies // like shapes – you, me and the swell of the sound of an insect chorus in september ;; fading, cacophonous, resonant, signifying everything
no i can’t write about it
so my arteries are stopped up and my mind is chopped up
life is still hotfoot and flooded; busy / full / resounding
jamie is still pitter patter spitfire and full-blooded consciousness soaring
autumn is still approaching; hands-wide, mouth-open, sky speckled and darting
school is sanctuary ; school is therapy, healing, meditation
photography work is the dream ; challenge, learning, pulling, gripping, capture
music is everything
the play is fire ; fire is igniting me ; ignition is pulling me close
but i haven’t submitted any writing since april and the past 6 months of shows have been consuming and i need a break and i need to get back into my pocket and i need to finish projects and i need to keep tunneling up the mountain and i need to keep writing
and i need to keep my head screwed on straight and stare straight into the sun and not at the moon and not at the shoreline and not at the river and not at your heart just fucking here in my fucking hand and not at the season slowly closing and not at my phone gently vibrating and not at the screen piling pixels at permanence
just ride the bike, just ride the canal, just ride the water. just listen. just pull the trees towards you, tuck yourself in under their branches, tuck yourself in, tuck your self in
she used to be mine – sara bareilles
and now the fall crawls towards me ; autumn hands like bedsheets, like linen and ash and muscle contracting. stone bones curl inwards, hurricane eyes flood skeletons of summer hammocks. the sunlight starts to shiver. the weight of color begins to hunger in the green canopies. bumblebees and busy-ness ; the buzz of horizons burning black. embers now, embers now. remember how to shiver ; remember how to clamour for heat. how to tap your feet together like dorothy in the chilled reminiscence of bare feet.
new words take tumorous shape within my brain now. new play to open, new theatre to prowl, to inhabit, to listen to. and moments and mistakes and retakes and gamble feet talking into focus.
new children who gaze at me sidelong and wide-eyed ; infant-handed and perfect-mouthed. little fears tucked behind their ears ; little dresses approaching their scabbed summer knees. little lives splayed out in front of them like a game ; like a memory ; like a toy ; like a play.
and little me and little you, and little story still hammering at my life like a memory ; like a game ; like a play // like a song.
keep singing to me.
my first boyfriend got engaged yesterday. and Bekah got married. and life rolls on. and youth dissipates. but does not scamper. peels. twists. contorts. and some of the faces are gone. and some of the faces are still there. and the things that endure – the people that endure – there is something wonderful there. about the things that get stuck in the wash. and the things that wash out in the river. that keep floating downstream. the faces of people gone by.
the hum of insect reverie slips through me. i am an opal of heat still rising into september. i am a ball of cotton sopping up humid dreams. i am still summer, i am still green. i am still wild – i still churn onwards.
and the best air is yet to come. and vultures can’t feed on my carcass yet – i am still flooded with fire.