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before this current life

My paycheck is spent on responsibilities.

Rent.

Food.

Insurance.

Bills.

The occasional sex toy.
I’ve got a grudge that I’m holding, against everyone, this includes you and your family, your pets, your pantry, your husband, your job.

I’m not sure if this is innate or if it surfaced with time. I can feel my muscles tense up right when I wake up. I can’t get it together, they stay like that throughout, gnawing my soul, not lovingly, real rough real mean, like the stray dog that bit my face when I was deported back to the homeland in 1991.
Where does this shame come from?

Does everyone feel it?

Is it cause we came from sin?

Are we all destined to this melancholy bullshit?

Is the creator to blame?

Does he see my pocketknife?

Does he understand that this loneliness has followed me, followed all of us from birth.
My mother gave me some crucial advice growing up.

Advice I’ve just recently understood as true.
“First you, then you and finally only you”, she’d say.
It’s the same with love and everything in-between.

Look out for yourself, the heart is a vulnerable stupid thing.

You give it away only to get it right back, broken, in pieces, completely and uncomfortably unrecognizable.

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musings circa 2013

I think I’ll drink tonight, I’ll pretend I have something worthwhile cooking in my brain and speak of all the books I have yet to write and all the movies I have yet to watch. 

There’s nothing wrong with carrying around your fears and crudely soothing them with poison. I’m a drinker Monday thru Friday and take the weekends off, but not today. I have a budget strictly for it and plan on making the most of it. Drinking alone isn’t all bad, I enjoy the sound of my music and the smell of food cooking. Food I took the liberty of marinating and dressing up to suit my palette. 

It’s date night. 

Date night with myself. 

The time of the month when I indulge in my own presence. 

The time of the month when I’m not bleeding and I’m not emotional.

I’m stable and starving.

I take real good care of myself then.

I set the table and let Miles Davis set the mood. 

This whole gender role bullshit always had me twisted up in a knot. I never wanted to give into the feeling of being a woman. I thought it weak and benign.  I could never be those things correctly, I thought. I could never live up to all the woman I’d see in the streets, on television, read about in literature or was even friends with. I lacked some sort of Venus aspect. My mutable masculinity permeated my every move, the tone of my voice, the way clothes hung on my body, the way I held a fork or smoked a cigarette. 

But someone would come along, I’d tell myself. 

Someone would look at all those things and make me remember my worth. 

But no one ever did come along.

I waited and waited.

I searched and pulled away in hopes that maybe someone would see me from afar and feel this unbearable pull towards me. That weight in the pit of the stomach, the need to stare into my eyes until they could see their reflection in them, until they could count how many specks of black adorn my brown retinas. 

That close. 

That deep. 

Until I could smell their breath and taste the pungent aroma of cigarettes. 

That close.

Closer even.

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I’m 38.

At this age, one should have a career, perhaps a family, a husband, some savings.

I have managed an office job, some plants, a beautiful husband, and a dwindling savings account.

I think about death too much. My face resembles overgrown jungles and my body, a volcano. Bubbling, erupting, dormant. 

I wasn’t made right. 

There are bits of me that need a fresh coat of paint. 

Yellowstone has been active and the geological layers are weakening. This eruption is overdue and honestly I’m ready. I’ve found the love of a lifetime and everything else, even my writing career, seems frivolous. The temperature would plummet and we, as Californians, would die. 

We are not equipped for cold. 

I am however, used to it. Mostly from my mother and my father. They are experts at being cold. They’re good people, if good means making sure I had food and a roof. But cold cold, like a harsh Chicago winter that my husband often describes, I wouldn’t know about those kinds of winters because I am ignorant to real cold. I just know the coldness of home. 

I am not alone.

It’s a shame really.

That they didn’t get to know me.

I’m fun.

Funny.

A good conversationalist.

Witty.

Passionate.

Engaging.

They missed out on me.

That’s what I keep telling myself.

It’s the only way I can deal. How does one deal with neglect? With the lack of motherly love?

I must sound like a baby that never got breast fed. 

I’m everything but. 

I indulged on the tit. 

Sucked on it, till it deflated. 

Tried to be a good daughter, always.

Failed.

Never good enough. 

Never.

So my adequacies are just, at least in my mind.

I keep moving on.

Always moving.

Always slow.

Always steady.

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Summer is coming to Los Angeles,

and I am hopeful that we will survive it.

You wouldn’t know it looking through our window lately though, this “rain” is ridiculous and honestly it is starting to annoy me.
I am hopeful that our love is strong enough to endure the cruel cruel scorching hell that becomes my apartment during those brutal summer months.
Well, OUR apartment.
I have died on the cross in this apartment.
Created whole worlds, attempted knitting, made cupcakes.

 

He is afraid that his love of baseball will be the end of us.
…but the sounds of baseball make me feel warm.

Nostalgic.

Brings tears to my eyes.

He reminds me of everything that was good and safe in childhood.

He will never know the impact his essence has on me.

How much I love that he is everyone and everything I’ve ever loved wrapped into a whole.

 

HipstamaticPhoto-537061717.153070

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I sleep with demons.

Sometimes they’re so faint, I forget they’re near.

I don’t carry them on my shoulders like I used to though, instead they’re infatuated with the idea of making cameos. They have their own agent, make their own schedules, take 2 hour lunches.

They’re scum. 

They can feel when I’m soft, calm, warm. They can feel when I’m melting into comfort, that’s when they come. That’s when they know they’ll really leave an impression. I’m not surprised or even upset when they come. I do however cry, because the feeling of defeat is overwhelming. 

Imagine thinking you’ve killed something, only to have it resurrect over and over again. 

I’m one of millions. 

I’m not special. 

I was born.

I grew up.

In-between, some fucked up shit happened. 

I kept growing.

More fucked up shit.

Patterns.

Patterns.

Patterns.

Then one day, you see it like a mathematical equation and try a new method. An easier method. One that doesn’t require so much erasing, so much of everything.

Confidence swells, and your ego and pride get fed, not much, just a snack, something that satiates, and you feel like a savage. You’ve pilfered these demons, they’re dead. Gone. Butchered. 

Only.

They’re not. 

They’re the cockroaches of the subconscious. 

They will outlive me, I’m positive of it. 

So I get dressed, write down these words, and hope that this delicious ‘May gray’ lasts a little longer.

You have to trust the void.

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Being on a 28-day menstrual cycle makes everything nuanced. When the 27th day approaches, I am an emotional mess, my face gets re-aligned, I cry at nothing, my back feels twisted and broken. 

By the 28th day, my silk robe is stained, my fingers are bloody and my husband strokes my face and re-assures me he’ll get the stain out. 

This was my Thursday morning. 

I was hoping I was pregnant, so I mourned my bleeding uterus by wearing a black bohemian dress, crushed blue velvet tights and sandals. 

When did I become this person? 

I am an upgraded version of myself. 

A version I was adamant on never becoming. 

I smoke a couple of cigarettes before I head to work, eat some fruit that my thoughtful husband cut up for me and thank him by sucking his beautiful cock and having him come in my mouth. 

1.2 billion of his children now swim in my belly. 

I love him. 

I park and know that when 4:30 p.m. rolls around, I will have forgotten where it is that I parked my electric blue car. 

There are meetings and lay-offs and bad coffee and people from the sales department that look like Russian serial-killers & Cher drag queens. There are bitter old yogis who have been on too many Ayahuasca trips and uptight men in bad unironed suits. I eat cashews for breakfast and stare at my screen that loads at the pace of a dying turtle. 

I want to be home, writing, making love, writing, making love, napping, smoking, taking strolls hand-in-hand with my new husband, writing…

Instead, we’re inside the “war room” talking about the future of our jobs, and the eventual changes that feel like impending doom. I stand in the corner because that’s where I belong, hidden and opaque. 

I ask the hard questions because everyone is too scared to speak up. 

“Will we be compensated monetarily if we take on a larger load?”

“Why are you making us wait till June 30th to determine our fate in this company?”

People laugh nervously and I bleed onto my adult diaper. 

I am a warrior, I think to myself. 

A beautiful bloody warrior queen. 

The kind that moves effortlessly through office halls and goes home to oil portraits her talented husband has painted of her.

It’s a good life when I’m not on the 9th floor on Brand Blvd.

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Yes, this fear comes from being bombed in the womb. 

Civil War trauma in the womb.

Grenade womb.

Volcano womb.

I blame the womb for everything. 

Blaming anything else makes no sense. 

That’s the egg. 

The beginning. 

The rest is a consequence. 

This moment is merely pounded behavior, mixed with GMO’s. 

I speak and write funny cause I taught myself your English. 

You Americans are thieves, you’re complicated. 

You’re lucky I can even express myself correctly. 

I’m lucky that my accent is next to dead. 

That I watched Valley Girl enough times to kill it. 

Kill it. 

Murder it. 

Bury it.

I thank 80’s music and PBS for my education. 

I thank MTV and VH1’s Pop-Up Videos.

Life-changing events and birthdays are to blame for my poetry. 

Celebration of the womb. 

Keep the theme, keep the womb in the forefront of the mind, because you’ll notice, that all you do, all you think, all you fear, all you love goes back to the beginning. 

Nostalgia lives, because the womb calls it. 

 

I need sleep.

 

I need to crawl back to the womb.

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Tragedy. 

I’m always tragic. 

My very birth was tragic. 

My mother had me standing up, almost killed her. I didn’t, but it always plagues me. So I hold her in my heart and she held me in her belly. Evens out I think.

How was I supposed to know that I was gonna meet the love of my life at 38? 

How was he to know? 

We walked around, him in snow, me in humidity, clueless that life had her own plans for us. This world, this world that erupts and shakes is only here temporarily. It all seems so fragile after an earthquake, a tsunami, a hurricane. 

We are nothing. 

So love hard. 

Love and love and love and love and then love some more.

We are temporary nothings pretending to be somethings. 

We use paper to buy costumes. 

To look like we have shit figured out. 

To pretend that our fragility is a farce. 

We give of ourselves to predators and sometimes we break some hearts. 

We solidify, become calloused and then slice open our chests again, and again, repeat repeat repeat.

Back to tragedy.

When he is away, I feel tired, lethargic. 

Innocence intact.

He’s a warlock. 

Banishes ghosts. 

Indulges in love and doesn’t cloud his feelings. 

Wears them like an amulet. 

Knows we’re only here this once, so he lives passionately. 

Wants answers, but knows there are none. 

Loves me like children love. 

Unabashedly.

I think of catastrophic events, I think of the possibility of being far from him when the Earth decides to swallow itself up. 

I wonder if he’ll feel me dying? 

If I’ll feel him slipping back to the cosmos?

If the crows that follow us when we’re apart will come to assure us that the other is somewhere thinking of this great love?

Death doesn’t scare me anymore. 

I’ve died a million times, the difference now, is that I’m alive. 

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I never wanted children. I never played with dolls; I never coddled them or wanted to take care of them. I cut their hair real short and made them have lesbian sex.

I made them have threesomes with other stuffed animals and drape them with ridiculous outfits.

I’d open them and re-stuff them, hold them at night mostly because of loneliness, not for an aching need to take care of something.

The years skimmed by and everyone began to have sex and spit out children like baked bread. Not just one kid, but several. I’d see young mothers in continuation school with a history book in hand and a baby on their lap.

It was terrifying.

One boy got HIV. Others got herpes, chlamydia etc…

I was so scared, and luckily pretty unattractive. So at the very least, I had some leeway into safety. I was also friends with the town faggot, so I was shunned straight-away.

Dubbed a lesbian since I dressed in boys clothes.

Ridiculous.

It’s fucking comfy.

I guess playing lesbian Barbie with friends didn’t help.

The fag was great though, at the time. He and I broke fag-hag/faggot barriers in that pathetic little town. We’d stay up nights high on meth, smoking cigarettes outside my balcony.

We’d make up B-movies in my living room and take the bus to the beach.

We charged the neighborhood children money to watch porn in the comfort of his house since his parents owned a video store and were always home late. Funny what you can get away with while puberty is lightning strong.

Anyway, I never wanted children. I’d rather get a pug.

A beauty of a pug, too with an apricot fawn coat and a flat squishy face that I’d adore till it died.

I’d give it the attention I never got, minus the teen-parent-drama. It’d love me every day the same and never talk back or do drugs. It’d sleep and snuggle next to me and never get sick of the same food.

I’d name him Socrates, since the man was stocky & short, with bulging eyes and a snub nose. It’d be fitting. Like most philosophers and pugs alike, he’d showcase ignorance and end up looking like a fucking genius.

Yes, I’d rather have a pug. I never wanted children.

Except for when I did.

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Why do we look like all the great loves? he asks as we fall asleep.

 

I love this man.

 

LOVE.

 

Why must I have an office job instead of being at my grimy soft studio apartment next to the one I love?

 

I should be churning out writing while he churns out art…

 

WHY?

 

We are not meant to be in tall buildings, inside small offices.

But I have health insurance

 

We are not meant to have nature as an unattainable thing you can watch through frosted glass.

But we have a courtyard with cacti.

 

We are not meant to ingest 8 cups of coffee a day.

I bring creamer I got on sale cause no one here deserves good things.

 

We are meant to do everything BUT that.

 

I drive through Los Angeles and its May Gray.

A soft pillow of clouds hugs its skyscrapers.

Everyone is in a hurry, pretending to have their shit together.

They probably work in a fucking office.

 

No sign of heat anywhere and that concerns me.

This time last year my father was dying and the heat was unforgiving.

Hours were spent inside clinic cafeterias.

In pews by the information desk.

In hard chairs taking soft naps.

Screaming heroin addicts.

Holes drilled in my father’s head.

Hospital Arias.

A symphony of catheters.

 

 

This year is different.

I died and died and got my lungs handed back to me.

Got my heart chewed and wrapped in soft fur.

A breath of fresh air.

Poisonous in its danger, but healing in its power.

 

This is wedding season I’ve heard say.

Time to exchange chaos and make promises of both love and disappointment but love nonetheless.

A promise of forever. A forever that lasts as long as you do.

 

Lately, my death anxiety has been replaced with an eagerness to live.

To remember why I’m breathing.

The thought of him helps.

Our love is ancient.

Pure.

Filthy.

Beautiful.

It is everything sacred, innocent and genuine.

I miss him.

 

Time to go home.