Sunday, December 21, 2008

Can you hear me?


I lost hearing in my right ear--the culprit, wearing clay earplugs to bed. After several hours of irrigation, prodding and silent tears I resigned to my fate—my ear was completely blocked. For awhile, my little “condition” was a sweet blessing. It fed my isolationist tendencies. I didn’t have to consciously block people out—I really couldn’t hear them. I retreated into my innermost self. The more contact I lost with the outer world, the more conscious I became of my body—my heartbeat, my breathing, the sound of my voice, for it is my inner voice that I most prefer. My center shifted.

After awhile I started thinking that maybe it wouldn’t be so bad to be deaf in one ear. I mean, look at the great artists of our time—Alice Walker is blind in one eye, Vincent Van Gogh lost his ear, Sylvia Plath was manic depressive. Maybe my physical impairment would give birth to creativity or a new way of thinking.

Unfortunately, acceptance of my partial deafness faded when I walked out into the world. Suddenly, I struggled to monitor my voice and tone—I was afraid of speaking too loudly or softly. I worried that someone would realize my impairment. I was petrified of being different—even more unusual than a black woman writing.

After days of saying “I can’t hear you,” “Speak louder”--I began questioning the strength of my relationships. I mean, would I be loved as quickly, as deeply? Would he, she excuse or accept my impairment if I were to become deaf in one ear? How would I compensate?

Before this incident, I never questioned my physical normalcy. I’ve always believed that beauty is only skin deep—but is that trite? Is it the same as a white man proclaiming to be color blind, all the while enjoying the privileges of his white skin? Am I uttering the words of acceptance and multi-layered conceptions of beauty without acknowledging the benefits that my normalcy and physical appearance confer?

Although I can hear again (my ear cleared suddenly, thank goodness), I don’t have any answers for the questions now burgeoning in me. I do know that I am not special--superficiality has a hold of me too. Somebody save me.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Intoxication


I could use a drink right now. If I smoked, I would most certainly be high. I just need some time…to ease my mind… a minute, a second to catch my breath, or maybe my life. I am overwhelmed. So many decisions with little information, exams, my noisy neighbors and the economy…oh, don’t get me started on the economy and the bailout plan. I went to grocery store yesterday and came out with four plastic bags of food for eighty dollars. As a nation, we’ve collectively bent over and now we are being..uh emm..u know...

I want to be present but it is so difficult. Where is the fast forward button? What do I do with the mundane tasks and the stress resting in the cracks of my existence? As I move more fully into life, I edge nearer to death. Or is it the other way around?

There is one thing that has made me hopeful. That is Barack and Michelle. Michelle, a black woman, un-bossed, unafraid, intelligent and poised. And Barack, a black man who loves his wife as his equal—highly evolved , emotionally aware, intellectually astute, our next President. I marvel at this moment in time, but a cloud has been cast over my celebration by the recent events in California. In a few months, I will be equipped to go out into the world and help protect families in crisis. But as for my own family, I have no rights. No one has ever given me anything and I don’t expect anything today. Power is not given, it is fought for. I will live and take what is mine. Screw the system—I can get married tomorrow and a bond on a piece of paper (which more than 50 percent of heteros break) will not stop me.

But until then, I just need a drink, a respite, some vodka and a safe space to rest before the fight. Can you offer me this?

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

FROM MAUI, WITH LOVE












First, I must apologize for my absence. I’ve been wrapped in school, internships, the job search and most important all, Maui. I’ve missed you, my blog family, so desperately. If I didn’t write today I fear that I wouldn’t have written for another hundred days.

I crossed off one of the "100 things to do before I die" in Maui. I swam naked in the ocean. It was so exhilarating—so freeing—better than any Disney theme ride or bungee jump—just me, my body and the water. I was struck by the simplicity of it all. I am to return to the earth this way, naked and unencumbered.

My ex-husband used to tell me that I wanted too much. I wanted the light and the dark, the hard and the soft, the ups and the downs. It’s funny. How. Life changes. So suddenly. Now, I have sober dreams and un-foiled visions. I’ve tucked in my pixie dreams.

These days, I require little. When everything is taken from you, you know that you don’t need much to survive. I’ve come to think of our incessant desire for commodities this way—in a parable perhaps...


It’s like a man who hasn’t eaten in a while and he believes that he is famished, so with greedy eyes he hoards things which he believes will fill him. In a moment’s time, his stomach swells and he is no longer hungry—but because he fears that food will not return, he continues to binge until finally, the sensation of fullness is numbed. He becomes a slave to the very thing that he thought would once bring him satisfaction—the ultimate cruelty.

I do not want to become enslaved to the excesses of life. I will feed until I am full. As softly as the sun slips behind the clouds, I vow to slip naked into the ocean again every year to remember the freedom of wanting nothing more. Love fortifies.

Sunday, September 07, 2008

THE SEVEN YEAR ITCH




In exactly seven days, I will step into my fourth body. Most people are unaware that as humans the bone in our skeletons completely renews itself every seven years. So while you sit at work, drive your kids to school, and make love, your bones are constantly shifting and re-growing—discarding things unwanted and unused—the ultimate refinement. Every seven years, we become our most magnificent selves—the updated and amended versions.

In exactly seven days, I will be 28 years old. I have to admit that I am not exactly where I once thought I would be at this time. In college, I had imagined that I would have a stable career, moving up the ranks as a powerful attorney.

I imagined that I would be starting a family with a man that I loved—living behind a white picket fence, the embodiment of the American dream.

I imagined that I’d have the wind at my back—all my loved ones here to enjoy the fruits of my success.

However, at the threshold of my fourth body, I am met by the realities of my life. I am not an attorney. To the contrary, I am still in law school and I don’t have a job.

I am no where near starting a family and the prospect thereof is somewhat daunting. I don’t live behind a white picket fence, but in a high-rise. And the most important of my loved ones is no longer here to enjoy the fruits of my success.

But I am content.

What I could have never imagined is the strength of the human spirit. Seven years ago, I clothed myself in visions of power, believing that becoming a big attorney was the only way my life would be of worth. On the dawn of this new body, I know my worth. I know that my value can never be measured in inauthentic and temporal power.

Seven years ago, I never thought that I would ever have the courage to live my truth--to love a woman in the light, unabashedly unafraid of the consequences. Today, I am no longer silenced by religious rhetoric or my desire for perfection. I have never experienced such freedom and fulfillment as it is to love a woman. This is where I was always meant to be.

Seven years ago, I believed that I would never be able to move forward if the center of my life left this earth. My mother is no longer here; yet, I am still moving.

On my desk, I have a letter my mother sent to me a month before she died. She addressed the letter “To my future attorney” and ended the letter with “Your #1 mom.” Between the salutation and the signature, she told me how proud she was of me.

This letter came after I told her that I was leaving my husband, and after she met my girlfriend, whom she hugged and laughed with and loved. She measured her achievement as a mother, not by my accomplishments, but by the woman I had become. To her, I was already a success. She gave me permission to live my life the way that I see fit—and I thank her for her abounding and unconditional love everyday. I will never be ashamed of who I am for I am deeply loved.

So on the eve of this new skeleton, I say goodbye to the former. You have kept me well. You have offered me protection and fortitude in my darkest hours. I will take this new body into the next seven years, and at 35 it shall return to the earth, and I will come again to pay homage.

Thursday, August 21, 2008

A mix of things...



My significant other stumbled across my last blog regarding her request. Let’s just say that she, yes she, wasn’t so thrilled. The birthday gift ended before it even began.

I have to admit that I’m a bit relieved. I know that the frequency of sexual intimacy is not a measure of our commitment. Pause. Now I can savor the decadence of a spontaneous needy fix. Hooray for small miracles.

After some thought, I think way too much, I believe that her request was an attempt to keep me near. She thinks that she is losing me.

With great sadness, I ended my internship last Friday. I’ve had an amazing summer. I will miss the incredibly talented lawyers in the public interest field. They are rebel rousers, social movers and change makers—fighters of unpopular causes. Charles Houston was right; lawyers are either social parasites or social engineers. I am no parasite. I will miss my clients, women at point zero, struggling to regain control of their lives. I have faith in their ability to change and move forward.

I start my final year of law school on Monday—with a mix of exhilaration and relief. I cannot write of all the times that I have thought about leaving it all behind to return to normalcy. Life came around full circle this summer as I was imploring Tara, another woman of color, not to leave law school. But what of those behind you? I thought.

Tara finally decided to escape to California for the semester to gather her spirit and mind. Hopefully she will return in the spring to finish the task at hand. I often wonder about these large predominately white institutions of power—so many brown bodies crushed in the shadows. This is about so much more than her or I. We need a revolution with lawyers on the front line. I am preparing my weapons and armor for war.

I am grateful for the lawyers of Pakistan speaking truth to power—reminiscent of lawyers in the American civil rights movement. They have dismantled Musharraf. They have given me faith in the measure of my professional degree.

Life is unfolding in my hands. Life, deliver me.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

SEX


My significant other has a very specific birthday request—sex everyday for a month. I am willing to give it a whirl but I am sure that there will be a sobering lesson at the end of this journey for the both of us.

Sex is like chocolate cake. Chocolate cake once or twice and week is oral pleasure—chocolate cake everyday for a month, not so much. I am afraid that I will miss out on the intricacies of the connection by having sex just to have sex. I don’t want to lose the tiny seconds of silence that come immediately after the sweet convulsion. I want the anticipation, the shivers…traversing the unknown. I want some kind of sacredness—sex should not be like watching television, eating or dressing everyday. It is not a routine test.

I am comfortable with my sexuality. It is a garment I wear with ease. However, I don’t believe that you need to have sex or think about sex to be sexy. Sexy is not something that you do, it is who you are. There are tons of people who have sex and are not sexy.
Sex, when done properly, is succulent. Sex, when used as currency, is perverse.

Because of love and my passion for learning experiences, I will travel where few other women have traveled before. But do know, that if this becomes routine, as I fear, I might have to opt for a new experience ;-)

Friday, July 18, 2008

Lesson Learned

I’ll sell my right breast (I’m a bit partial to the left one) before I try to hook up another friend. I dabbled in the stars and attempted to play match-maker this week. It was an absolute train-wreck.

Before I give you the details, let me back up and tell you how this all came about. Tim (for the purposes of this blog) is a young, cute, gregarious lawyer with deep dimples and piercing blue eyes. Everyday he comes into my office to talk about family, girls, and all things unrelated to the practice of law. When I learned that he was single, I thought of a friend who I believed could provide some mental and physical stimulation. Knowing how hard it is to meet decent people these days, it seemed purely logical to me that these two should meet. Besides, I love love and the prospect of vicarious new love was too sweet to resist.

We arranged to meet for drinks after work this Wednesday. My good friend, Jenna--sharp, witty and passionate--was stunning as usual. We sat down, ordered drinks and settled in.

Tim, Mr. Lawyer, immediately turned the conversation to himself. He complained miserably about his job and clients for almost an hour. Jenna and I tried to offer levity to the conversation--making little jokes, inserting references to pop culture, to no avail. At the end of the night, we were nauseated.

Although Tim graduated from Harvard and went to one of the best law schools in the country—I realize that he is an idiot (in the nicest way possible). He made no good faith attempt to get to know Jenna –I was embarrassed for even suggesting that the two should meet. You cannot teach good manners, common sense or likeability at Harvard. He is a lawyer, and most lawyers are just like him, socially inept, self absorbed and flat out annoying.

I called Jenna after we parted and apologized for Tim’s behavior. We had a good laugh and agreed to meet again for drinks, just the two of us.

Now when I walk into the office and see Tim, I don’t question why he is alone. He probably will be alone until he moves to corporate law, which he will, and entices some young college graduate to marry him with his 401(k) earnings.

And yes, I am giving up my side hustle. No more match-making for me--at least not with lawyers. I’ve got more important things to do like go make world peace, or find the cure for cancer or something like that. This lawyer thing is so overrated.

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Lovely Little Things

From scanning my past few postings, I realize that you may think that I am deeply depressed and dark—this, I am not. It just so happens that I have used this space to free the unmentionables, and you, my lovely readers, have been present to witness such occurrences. If you could see beyond these key strokes you would know that I am actually quite light, flirty and fun. I live hard. I laugh hard. I love harder. So today, I’ve made a list of twelve little things that I love. For they are the little things that move me so.

1. the smell of skin
2. lying naked underneath my warm, soft, faux fur blanket
3. sipping sweet southern brewed iced tea
4. touching the warm spaces of my lover’s body
5. listening to rain fall to the pavement in the midnight hour
6. two glasses of cranberry juice and vodka before a night of dancing and pure escapism
7. road trips with my favorite people and music
8. flirty exchanges coated with lust and the potential for danger
9. candles and Will Downing after a long and stressful day
10. the waves and sand beneath my feet
11. waking up to see the person that I love resting softly beside me
12. the passing of fear

Tell me, what is your favorite little thing?

Friday, July 04, 2008

DREAMS OF MY FATHER

My father is a junkie, but he is alive and well. There was a time when I wrote of him, wondering if he was safe. Was he tired? Was he fed? Was he lost in an alleyway with a strip of rubber plastered to his sweaty arm?

I would have washed his feet and poured alabaster upon his head like Mary Magdalene—an atonement of sorts. At night, I would lie in bed afraid that I would never get a chance to say goodbye to him—that he would escape me in life, and too, in death.

The day after my mother died, he called me from behind prison walls, his voice thick like gravy. I could not respond. He is here, she is not.

It is the ultimate trick, the final cruelty, that this man with eyes caked shut, this man who cared nothing but of his sweet addiction is the only thing that I have left to claim. I brim with resentment. Barrister in training never had a chance to appeal or petition for her. Who was present to intercede?

His life shatters every concept of balance. He was spared. And for that, I ache. A life for a life, he should have taken her place, and I would have poured alabaster upon his head.

I know that thoughts are cold and hard, but I do not apologize. I stopped believing in fairytales and happy endings a long time ago.

I fold and ask for a new hand.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

4 random points of nothingness

1. I hate public transportation. Regrettably, rising gas prices have neutered my bourgeois inclinations. Every morning I herd onto the 8:17am train—sunglasses to hide my disdain, book in hand to dissuade anyone from looking my way. I am not a morning person.

Today, I came to my stop and shuffled my belongings to signal preparation for departure. When I stood up, an oily white woman standing in the aisle refused to let me pass. My aggressive tendencies, lack of sleep and general distaste for anyone who attempts to get in my way took over. I shoved my large stocky purse into her side two times and pushed past her to make my way out of the train. It was pleasant. I was satisfied. Screw Buddhist reflection—it was 9 am in the morning.

2. I met with my ex yesterday for a “serious” talk. When you are married, an intimacy comes that is unmatched in any other relationship. After all of this time, I still know that when he says this, he means that. And so I knew before he even spoke a word what he was preparing to say. He is ready to file for divorce.

And Although I have prepared myself for this moment, it still ripped through me. We were the best and the worst with each other. Love’s life or life’s love as he often called it. I know that he is still in love with me, and although I have given my heart to another woman, I will always be able to return to him. Some things defy logic.

3. I am getting a kitten. Hopefully, a kitten will curb my appetite to procreate. Can you imagine that? Now, of all times, as I am preparing to divorce, my biological clock finally wakes up and starts to tick. The irony of it all.

I had a dog a few months ago but that was a disaster. I searched over a month to find him and commissioned my ex to drive with me to Amish country to pick him up. He was perfection in the car—hardly made a sound. But when I let him out of the cage to introduce him to his new surroundings he promptly relieved himself on the carpet—and so this would continue for the next few days. I plastered the floor with doggy diapers, tried to get him to go outside, but everyday I would come home to find the doggy diapers tattered and torn and huge piles of dog poop on my kitchen floor. To make matters worse, he yelped and yelled all night long. After 4 days, I packed up his bags and doggy diapers and dropped him off at a friend’s house. It was an open adoption. I never looked back.

A kitten would be much easier. Cats are self cleaning agents. They only poop on the floor, out of spite, when their litter boxes are messy. I don’t blame them though. I don’t sit on dirty toilets either.

4. I am alone tonight. I’ve forgotten how to be alone. There once was a time when I craved space. Now, I fear that I have regressed. Silence has come to visit me. Dreadful thoughts are knocking at my door.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

TO BE WOMAN

More than any other time, I am spilling into my womynness. Walking down the street today, catching the sun in the locks of my hair—gentle breezes caressing my center to travel down my back and the inside of my thighs. I am so alive and wide, growing into my womynness.

The man at the corner winked at me; I smiled back. I am no longer afraid. Time has taught me to appreciate my gifts—subtle curves, tender waist, full lips and warm skin. This is not conceit. This womyness is hard fought—hard won.

To be woman is to be whole and layered. I am remarkably woman—carefully made.

I see, all the time, little girls who mistakenly believe that because their bodies talk, womyness is bestowed. Womyness is not given, it is earned. I’ve waited so long for this-- fought through harsh realizations and sat with unpleasant considerations—walked through the loss of a marriage and a parent, upset of family and friends—two roads diverged in a wood, and I took the road less traveled by.

Zora Neale Hurston wrote that for women, the dream is truth. Truth is inconsiderate and often uncomfortable. Zora died alone and unknown. Everyday I walk forward with blisters on the bottom of my feet. But if I should die today, I wish to die like Zora, fully actualized—fully woman.

So my womynness, I will handle with care. Singing songs of pain and of joy, for I am not alone.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

The Stench of Poverty

Most lawyers go into public interest law to save babies and old people. I help represent the “undeserving poor”—mothers whose children have been taken away by the state—mothers labeled unfit and unable to care for babies formed in the womb for nine months—mothers who still carry faint lines, like watermarks, across tummies—proof of life.

These women live on the edge, marginalized and forgotten, many of them too tired or afraid to fight anymore. The state’s intervention is merely another assault in their daily lives.

Ninety-eight percent of the cases I see involve issues of neglect—neglect varying from sub-standard housing, lack of adequate child care, to accidental injuries. Most of these issues are indicators of poverty—none of which have any nexus to a mother’s desire or ability to care for her child. That the state chooses to snatch children away from poor mothers instead of providing adequate resources is almost cruel. Poverty is not a crime.

I am struck most by the assumption of incompetence—caseworkers and lawyers on all sides assume that poor parents, mostly of color, are incapable of providing for their children. The fundamental right to direct to care and upbringing of your child, the right to privacy, the right to be protected from arbitrary state intrusion is often ignored.

I cannot help but think of my childhood at such a time. My mother often worked two jobs and when one job failed, she would rely on public assistance. I didn’t know that we were poor. All that mattered is that I was fiercely loved.

Yesterday, I met a 19-year-old mother. She was six months pregnant when her boyfriend died. A week after his death, she learned that he had died from AIDS related complications, not cancer as she was led to believe. She quickly realized that her cold sweats and vomiting were not morning sickness, but confirmation that she too was infected. Her baby was born three months later—HIV positive. After several hospitalizations, the state took her baby away. She walked into my office to prepare for her upcoming court hearing and held her head down the entire time. Her sadness burned right through me.

There are events that offer no understanding—there are no answers to offer satisfaction. I don’t believe in moral absolutes—the magical binary of good and evil. I resent those who wrap themselves in “truth” in an attempt to avoid the complexity of life.

She is not a baby, she is not old, but she is surely deserving. Her life has value although the system has thrown her away. I mark my doorways with compassion and say a prayer for understanding.

Thursday, June 05, 2008

BEAUTY AND THE BEAST

Last week I was forced to participate in a tedious orientation for my summer internship program. I am a bit of a recluse—the thought of socializing in a large plastic group had me reaching for a bottle of Xanex. The first day of training was as expected—students anxiously fielding generic questions like, “what law school are you from?” --completely uninterested in the answer. I chose not to participate in the social banter. I’ve been labeled as reserved and aloof. I am what I am and I feel no obligation to prove otherwise. I sat there pretending to find interest in the disheveled papers in front of me.

Just before the first training began, a beautiful girl with a flawless complexion and sexy sway came to sit next to me. She turned to ask me a question, thus beginning our conversation. After only a few minutes, I came to learn that she was not as beautiful as she once appeared. I listened to her go on and on about her accomplishments, her possessions, and the people she knew—by the end of the conversation I was completely uninterested in her. The more she spoke, the uglier she became. How could a girl blessed with such physical beauty not seek to find the beauty or interest in others?

I am sure that this girl with a beautiful complexion and sexy sway had many admirers—many of which I noticed at orientation. And I imagine that she divulged all of this useless information to me in an attempt to make see how beautiful she was too.

To be completely honest with you, I’ve rarely considered physical appearance when choosing to love someone. I’ve been with all types of people—short and stout, tall and lanky, awkward and outdated. I have endured the questions from friends, the trite remarks of strangers, and the painful jokes from family members—all of which were of no consequence when I compared my dizzying happiness to the lives and relationships of others.

Physical appearance is ill-suited to capture the profundity of this thing we name beauty. I find beauty in the unconventional—the belly bulges, the scarred knees, the stubborn hairs, the bucked teeth and burned elbows. I find beauty in vulnerability. Prying open your hiding space to let someone in to see, touch, experience the fullness of you. There is beauty in purity. Loving for the sake of loving without asking for anything in return. I find beauty in revelation. Stepping into the light to allow someone to bear witness to your pain. I find beauty in insecurity—those things that we silently curse in the darkness—those things that produce sadness and anxiety. Insecurity makes way for humility.

The girl with the flawless complexion and sexy sway is an object. She will never know the splendor of a beauty that far surpasses the physical. This kind of beauty cannot be manipulated or manufactured. It compels truth. It compels surrender. When I love, it is my only hope that you will blind yourself to the physical to unearth it in me. And I will give thanks.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

THE REMAINS

I’ve been here before. I know it. I’ve known it ever since I was a little girl. When I was around six or seven I would lie awake and watch my spirit leave my flesh. It would hover around, sometimes floating over my body, and then it would return just as quickly as it departed. It’s uncanny—but I was never scared. The visit, I welcomed. Some people have make-believe friends as children; I had a friend of another kind.

Lately, I’ve felt the split again. Somewhere in the hours between sleep and wake I feel the energy—sense it, like one senses movement out of the corner of the eye. I write about it with such ferocity because it is persistent. I’ve always known too much, been too aware, and too connected as if I am finishing the life of someone else, perhaps a life cut short. It’s a calling, something motioning me forward—I cannot explain but some nights I find myself weeping for events occurring not in this life, but possibly the one before.

Something inside of me has moved. There are things that I do without reason or thought, simulated automatic behaviors, like OCD—the remains.

I am desperately trying to figure out what occurred. Why is it that when overwhelmed or scared I find comfort in closets? Me, a woman, curled up in the closet—my only relief. Maybe somewhere before the artifice of time, a closet was my hiding space. From what or who, I do not know. But the feeling of safety has remained.

And there is my addictive personality. My addictions last for weeks and then abruptly end. Perhaps somewhere before I was starved –maybe I lost something. What I do know is that I cannot stop my compulsion to take and use without measure until it is done. The sense of urgency has remained.

And why do I, a normally self controlled woman experience intense and almost debilitating panic attacks in large crowds? It is a feeling of slipping away. The blood rushing out--my lungs collapsing as if I am returning to a tragedy. The feeling of helplessness has remained.

And then, there is the often irrepressible need to punish myself when I make mistakes. I attempt to stop my hands from clawing, punching—my teeth from biting. Who or what shamed me? What happened in the time before? Why do I feel the intense need to make things right—the need for redemption. The humiliation has remained.

All these seemingly unrelated things unsettle me. But this is the end. In this life, I will put the pieces of the story together. There will be a reckoning. I am not coming back again.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Before I die

Here is a list of 75 things that I want to do before I die. I started this list over six years ago while I was in college. From time to time I return to it. It’s been a frame of reference in a life that has taken so many unexpected twists and turns. I truly believe that life is a collection of experiences. We weave tapestries and paint stories with the people we meet, the places we travel and the simple still moments of life. I eagerly anticipate devouring life in all of its fullness. I want the ins and the outs, the ups and the downs, the dark and the light. I want it all. I am fully fleshed and breathing. Open and clothed with possibility.

1. Publish a book of poems
2. Write an autobiography
3. Adopt a child with physical disabilities
4. Learn sign language
5. Study theology
6. Meet Oprah
7. Produce a documentary 
8. Give a speech at my high school
9. Make a pilgrimage to Jerusalem
10. Learn how to play the piano
11. Travel to Egypt
12. Sponsor a NJ Seeds child
13. Eat frog tongue
14. Kiss a stranger
15. Go nude on a beach
16. Learn how to play soccer
17. Play the drums
18. Reunite with my first love
19. Go to a nudist resort
20. Purchase a home in another country
21. Become a flight attendant
22. Slap someone really hard for pissing me off
23. See my writing in a magazine
24. Experience transcendence
25. Learn how to ride a motorcycle
26. Go dirt bike riding
27. Race a car
28. See Michael Jackson in concert :(
29. Trade on the stock market
30. Fix a car
31. Make a pizza
32. Get my palms read 
33. Go to Disney World and meet Mickey
34. Witness a direct act of GOD
35. Purchase a valuable piece of art
36. Live in a loft with a loft bed
37. Get a degree in counseling
38. Publish a movie critique
39. Eat a chocolate covered cricket
40. Take a mud bath
41. Become a massage therapist
42. Become fluent in Spanish
43. Study Arabic
44. Grow a healthy savings account
45. Be a movie extra
46. Become a judge
47. Be the maid of honor at my best friend’s wedding
48. Meet Janet Jackson
49. Converse with Toni Morrison
50. Experience the beautiful and unspeakable act of love making on my wedding night 
51. Have my pregnancy documented on TLC’s “A Baby Story”
52. Raise “water babies”—take my babies swimming in the ocean
53. Visit my old middle school
54. Reconcile with my dad
55. Read the first manuscripts of the Bible
56. Work on a political campaign
57. Go to the grand canyon
58. Go wine-tasting
59. Open my own club
60. Go on a spiritual retreat
61. Take a milk bath
62. Get a couples’ massage
63. Practice midwifery
64. Hang glide
65. Skinny dip
66. Learn how to surf
67. Live in CA for a while
68. Go to an awards show
69. Cage dance
70. Learn how to strip
71. Join a Burlesque group
72. Own a pair of diamond earrings 
73. Own some real pearls
74. Pay off my all my law school debt
75. Buy a home


Feel free to add your own…

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

The Addiction

Most people find it hard to believe that I lost my virginity on my wedding night; I was twenty –three years old. I waited so long not for lack of opportunity—one only knows how many relationships these clinched thighs destroyed—but out of fear. Years later, I have come to believe that it was not fear of the other that preserved my virtue, but fear of my very self.

This part of my life has been thrown back into the air quite recently. I am still trying to piece together a conversation that I had with a friend a few weeks ago. I met him my first day of school. Our connection was instant. He was attractive, witty and cynical—I certainly thought that he would be a good friend--that is until he saw my wedding ring. He backed off slowly, I understood—I was no longer my own but a possession. Over the years we spoke occasionally, our furtive exchanges tinged with chemistry and attraction. And when I finally left my husband he was there, ready to offer comfort and support. In the summer, we spent a considerable amount of time together. However, when I realized that he wanted something more stable I turned away. I was free and open and wide. I sensed, like fear, that his hands were ill-equipped to handle my complexities –my overwhelming proclivities.

A few weeks ago, he invited me over to his house and prepared for me a meal. It was afterward that he asked me if I would consider at least being “friends with benefits.” I told him that I would contemplate his proposition; I never called him back.

It is not that I was offended by his request. I am a big girl—self possessed, aware and unconstrained by traditional notions of femininity. I’ve wrestled boys. I’m a kick ass take your girl kinda woman. But what frustrates and ultimately dismantles me, at least where it concerns men, is my inability to act; fear renders me impotent.

What is it that I am scared of? What is it that I am hiding? Maybe an inclination—a feeling that if I begin I will not know where to stop. A fear that I will take this body, use and abuse it, leave my soul at the door, manipulate and subjugate, give way to vice. I have an addictive personality, this I know. I am afraid that I have another addiction. This one, unrealized.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Manifest Destiny

There is a woman who cannot forget. All of the moments of her life are a constant amalgamation playing in her mind, every hour, every minute, and every second of her existence in this physical world. I watched her story a few nights ago, with mouth agape.

How intense would it be to have all of my moments present always? To remember every sunrise, every autumn day, the feeling of cool on my skin, the warmth of sand, my first kiss, my lover’s touch--a heightened form of consciousness perhaps. What I wouldn’t give, I thought, to close the passing of time.

But then, just as she began to explain her gift, darkness came into her face and my fascination ended. Her memories have been to her a haunting.

Because she can never forget, she can never begin anew. Her life is a constant regurgitation. There are no cocoons or metamorphoses. She is as she always was, trapped in the moment before.

Unabated memory has stripped her of the ability to transform. Meaning is only that which you mean it to be; its purest construction turned inside out. I am who I say I am. Through this blog, through the words, I am anything that I fancy to be and you will believe. Much of life is edited—our memories and thoughts. We tell ourselves and others stories, our egos run amok. We fashion our very existence--manifest love, sadness or strife. That things are rigid and static is the ultimate illusion. The present is all we have; create or perish.

So to this, I am glad that unlike this woman, I will forget. I’ve already made a list of things that I will mitigate, edit and comb into my life’s historical context. I will forget the day that my mother died, but through each breath, I will celebrate her life. I will discard the utter frustration of law school, but I will always practice justice. I will trivialize and dismiss assumptions and negative inferences made on the basis of my race, sex and sexuality. But I will hold all the joy that this Blakness, this Womynness, this Queerness can contain. I will distance myself from heartache but I will always bare my heart. I will do this today, and tomorrow I will wake to begin again and again and again…

Friday, May 02, 2008

a visit

It’s been over a month since I’ve journaled. I have half written statements and unfinished phrases on the edges of my case briefs. I am lost in moments and time and circumstance; I believe that I am possessed. Not a demon possession. I scared you. No, a possession of another kind. I spend most of my days much too aware of my thoughts. My thoughts have taken on a perverse life of their own. I am writhing with lusty pain. I need a drink to ease my state of mind. Vodka and cranberry will do just fine.

I am so tired—tired of law school with its pretension and lies, tired of junky politics and the desecration of hope.

Tired
of WrightClintonMcCainGOPAmericansLawyersSpinFlagsWarProvencialthinkingBosniaWhitefearCasebooks…add your own. I’m going to build my own fucking world. U want in?

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

damaged goods aisle three

I attempt to plug in holes with written words but today I am void of words for there are no words to bandage the gaping wound that I have caused. I need to un-type, undo the word, un-think the thinking thought, roll the sharp objects that flayed you while you were unaware back into my satchel.

To not have your hand to hold in this world is almost too much for me to conceive. I am spinning out of control because I cannot find my center. I cannot find you and I need you to tell me that everything will be alright. Grab my hand colored girl and skip down the path with me.

To not touch your skin, to not hear your voice or feed upon your words again is cruel.
To myself I have administered the final blow.

Saturday, March 29, 2008

how to save a life

the box of blue pills rest by my side. i fumble with the lid and cautiously slide them out onto the living room table. blue little pills i’ve used so often for relief. tonight i think that i might use them to save a life. when I was a little girl, i read that GOD took Enoch away. one day he was walking on earth and the next day he was free. separated him from the fallacy of this world. this transient and painfully unbearable fa├žade. some nights i ask, well why can’t GOD take me?

i sit here with sorrow carved so deeply. eviscerated.

i want to sleep tonight. blue little pills.
my salvation.
this musing. not a cry for intervention. i know full well that if i put these blue pills in my mouth i won’t make any attempts. i will leave this earth tonight. pray GOD mercy.

Suddenly, I hear her loud like something crashing down. She is in the other room. Completely unaware that I have decided to save a life. I push the pills away. Fuck it. Fuck me.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Mirror Mirror

She pulled back my eyelids
In an attempt to see my soul

Carefully placing in me
Imaginations and illuminations
mythologies and astro-philosophies
Of perfection
Her timid tongue prepared new words
Her feeble legs danced a strange and unfamiliar dance

She desperately wanted to see
Desperately wanted to believe
Praying for me to become
An unadulterated manifestation of secret cravings and ravished dreams
She placed the world at my feet
And blew a wish for possession

Little did she understand that what she had found
Was the ultimate realization of her greatest desires
And darkest nightmares
Further denial proved too fatal for contemplation

A creature so delicately flawed and incomplete
She lifted her face to the mirror only to see
A perfect reflection
Of herself

Monday, March 17, 2008

Flesh eater

It is tragic
That i sit here
starved
wanting
Just a little bit more
Thou dost protest too much

I think that I am greedy to need so much
I have slutty needs
And dirty thoughts

transcendence and understanding have dissipated
I crave the dark

She is rising again
leading me by the hand
No longer
i can resist

Take me
Make a mockery of my good thoughts
Stain my body
Knock me to my knees
Burn the insides of my thighs
Tag me
Rock these bones

Pull tears from my face
Tumbling down the rabbit hole
I am desolation
I am desperation
I am rage

Monday, March 03, 2008

TESTIFY


















































TESTIFY

on this day
today, yes, this very day
spirit left body
slipped suddenly
like rush
mad
opening
spinning through vortex
to re
turn
to the universe
to rest

no eyes
nor ears
present
to testify at its pass...
ing
she journeyed
alone
only weeping bodies left behind
folding
softly
in the wind

we curse light
not darkness
where she goes
i fear
i cannot go
she whispers in my ear at 3 am in the morning
"i'm free"
i smell her scent when i wake
to begin again
where she goes
i fear
i cannot go

with her hands
sullen eyes
and her freckles lining my face
i am here
now
to testify
where she goes
i fear
i cannot go

rest now
in the light
go safely
i am here now
to testify