Around the bend…

I’m a new woman
I’m a whole new girl
I just woke up, in the middle of this evening
and saw a whole new me… looking right into my own eyes

I’m standing here
on my own two feet
I balanced on that wire
I made it all the way across
I gathered up my own bones
and took them to my own promised land
I took me by the hand
and honored my pain
and honored my power
to heal myself

I’m standing here
whole
and broken
and whole again
all by myself
and the very next step I take
will be to just exactly where I want to go
and maybe you’re right
maybe I can’t see down that road
nobody can
nobody can
nobody can
see what’s around that bend

so what are you so scared of?

Heart on a Platter

she stares at the blank page
hoping that she won’t fall in
not again
not again

last time she came this way
it was better
there were words on the page but

now there are no words
no words at all
there’s nothing here to show where she’ll end up
so she
can’t fall in
can’t go down
can’t step out
into that
blank world

where have all the words gone?

it changed
it changed
it changed
he pulled the world out from
under me and it changed

there’s a plate on my heart
empty
staring out like a headlight
like one beam of light
out into the darkness
this white plate
there is nothing on it

there is nothing on it
but reflection

the moon stole my heart away
but I got it back
when the words fell off the page
and the world fell away
I took it back off that platter
and now
I see the words again
all the new words

and there is nowhere to fall
I only thought there was

All the words…

I’m thinking of all the words. The ones I want to say. And then I remember… maybe I already said them. To that person I thought was you. In that moment I thought was this moment. And then I don’t want to say them. I don’t want to say them again.

My fool eyes, my damned tongue, my Judas hands that wrote those words… to those inconsequential impersonators, wolves in soft clothing. Those thieves of golden moments, turned criminal by those fucking traitorous words. Those words, like black glue they permanently adhered to the pages they were scratched out on, and the ears, and the hearts that mistook them from me, those hearts and ears, those thieving eyes that held me. Laying in wait, they ambushed me with trust and robbed me of that rarest of moments, that first moment, that first time, that first word, shared. And heard. And gone now.

I’m throwing all of my words away. They are garbage and trash and I’m burning down the house they have lived in. I want to walk through the ashes of my history of words. I would be silent for years if I thought I could wipe the slate clean. I have kept away from the wolves, the ones that feign connection and promise and paint futures that I’m able to consider long enough to wrench my words from me. Your words, the words I meant for you. But though I have kept away these years, the words have still been spent. And they are not renewed. They are banished the moment they fell from my lips. Banished to a lost place that I do not know. Carried away with the men that took them to heart.

I find myself hoping that my words have in part or at least fallen on deaf ears but might have landed squarely on your heart. And every time another woman pretended that she could love you like I already do, and every time she promised that she would, her words fell like worthless currency on the table and you had no use for it. And there it remains, on the wood you never bothered to knock on.

My tongue, no virgin. No pure and sweet and new words are left. Those have all passed this way before, tied to balloons, lofty with hope, or blooming like fucking daisies. All the words I’ve said before are ringing in my ears. The thoughts and dreams and all the things I said I wanted to do.

And now all I want to do is find new words for you.

Dusting the Cat (a Christmas story)

So it was white alright, just not quite Christmas when this merry little tale began to wag. It was in fact the night before the night before. ‘Twas upon the eve of Eve that all through the house of us the ruckus ran amuck. There would be no silent night for mine as strange things were afoot and also at hand in our not quite wonder winterland.

My husband in skivvies and me with my nightcap were settling down for the eve. Little did we either know what soon I would believe. While sipping my nightcap of coffee, Hubby slowly slipped under sleep. Sweet in blissful ignorance, unaware of my forthcoming plight, I sipped my nightcap of coffee unsuccessfully defying the night.

Soon the moon and its night overcame me and I too fell softly to sleep. I slept and I slumbered and I slumbered some more, I slept and I slumbered till quarter of four. And then fitfully, and tossfully and turnfully more, I finally awoke at a quarter past more.

Having come to terms with the fact of the matter, I arose from my bed to make peace with my bladder. Together we walked, my bladder and I, until we were stopped, stunned, hallified. For there in the hall on the floor lay before us a blanket of fluffery powderish white. It had snowed in the house sometime during the night!

In the twink of my eye the cat dashed into sight. She was all tweaked and freaky and just not quite right. Our cat was black, but this cat was white. Had it snowed on the cat? Could this also be so? Every place that I looked I saw snow, snow and snow. It was on the chair and the bookshelf, the VCR and the table. It had snowed every so, any so where it was able!

And why was I leaning? Or was it the tree? Maybe if I stood crooked, one leggedly? My now slanty tree was naked to boot, but for one patch of ornaments hung motleyfied in a crew. The rest of the ornaments were missing or broken. Like last year’s forgottables they lay strewn on the floor, hither by my feet and yon thither, by the door. They had been dashed, crashed, and gleefully smashed. There were wooden sleds and angels with wings, Santa Claus heads and all Christmassy things. In between there poked shards of Christmas ball glass, colorful, shiny, and sharp, but Alas! There in the snow, amidst the fallen décor were one tiny, two tiny, many footprints more.

Pitter pattering frantically about in my head, I knew I’d need faith to believe where they led! ‘Twas an obvious conclusion, anyone would agree. This gremlin was no little monster indeed. He was just a bad little beady eyed seed, a renegade Elf out for Grinch infamy. I would track this imp down and give ‘im a go. Some Who was gonna have to clean up this snow!

I followed the footprints leading straight to the kitchen. This bad little dude was on a munchable mission. Onward ho, ho, ho he did hungrily go, on a hunt for some yummy to mum his rumatum tummy. Perhaps he was hankering for something gooey, crumby, or gummy. Mayhaps a simple bean of jelly, or sugarplums fair and goopy, or maybelly even something just a wee bit more soupy.

Yes, this elf was a cheffy little snoop… he had even tried to make some onion soup. He had tried to make soup, with a knife or three. He had tried to make soup on a plate. He had tried to make soup with no water. He had tried to make soup, but wait… with such short little knobby kneed leggies, how had he reached all of these?

He had reached all of these atop a tiny pink stool. He had reached all of these and more. He had reached lots and lots of sugar, which he sprinkled and poured galore. He had reached hills and mountains of flour. It was in heaps upon the floor. The flour and sugar abounded! They were every so, any so where! Any so, every so, just like the snow. And so…

Ever so slowly I was dawned upon. Ever so slowly I knew. My house had been snowed in with dry goods. Why hadn’t I had a clue? I had been dumbfounded and done in by a snoopy soupy duper indeed. And so indeedidly I decided I would hunt this dudeling down. I would search from Pole to Pole or at least from town to town. I would find this messy little marvel and force him to clean up my home, and then I would dip him in Mod Podge and make him a shiny yard gnome.

I fervently followed the elvish tracks on out and over and around. Powdery poufs and sticky sweet patches were all that remained to be found. Until, the path abruptly stopped. I had followed, and it had led to the little bitty foot of my baby girl’s bed. It had pittered and pattered and petered out here.

Had he snowed on her too? Had he snowed on my pink chubby cheeked Lindsey Lou? The answer was yes… but there was much more! He poured a mountain of flour in her nightstand drawer. There was sugar on top just like pretty please, but then the truth struck me and wobbled my knees.

Just who was this Who I was bound to discover? I now knew quite who it was not. This were no holiday elf, of that I was certain indeed. T’was no Santa’s helper gone bad. There would be no pointy shoes and there would be no pointy hat. For I had finally found the fiend what scared the dickens out of the cat. Here lay the ghost of the future, the present, and the past.

The ghost of the future jeered at me. Leering, she eerily chanted, “More, more, more of the same! Many more, many more years of the same!” My bones rattled as I pondered the merry scariness of life. Then merrier than scary the piggytailed ghost of the past popped by. She jingle jangle sing sang to me, “See me, see me? I’m you when you were two, too!”

Perhaps what goes around does come around, like peace and joy and bread on the water. Bread is made of flour, and I guess flour comes back around too. Who knew? Perhaps these ghosts were trying to flag me a warning. Hide the scissors. Get rid of the matches. And never leave soap by the fish tank alone. Check, check, check. Check, check, checkin’ it twice.

But where was the ghost of the present? Why hadn’t she come tonight? And then, ever so slightly, I saw the glimmer of a heavenly light. The ghost of the present is an angel it seems. She is an angel that haunts your cheek when your baby kisses it and then falls asleep. She warms empty arms even after snuggly hugs are gone. She softens your heart and makes everything all right just to see that she’s safe after one long night of knives and pointy shards of ornament glass and a really bad plate of soup. Here with her halo perched sideways on her beautiful beddyhair head, was my very own angel. My very own Lindsey Lou Who.

Hark, the angel snores a blustery chorus of happy snowfilled houses and of soup that warms both heart and soul and of Christmas trees decorated her way, just so… and of white kitties that used to be black and run really, really fast when they’re under attack.
I looked at her there, with flour all in her hair. Sugar was plum tuckered. So I tucked her in and kissed her sweet eskimoed nose. I dusted the cat and turned off the light, and nothing there stirred for the rest of the night.

Well, that is except for my bladder, you see, I forgot through it all to go for a pee.

Lindsey Lou Who (thirteen years later) :)