8.29.12 -- A letter to my future children &/or a reminder to myself.
I’d ask that you to trust yourself above all else, that you give this precedence over everything else. Even when everyone and everything around you is telling you otherwise, I’d encourage you to listen to the loud but little voice that speaks to you in the quite hours of the night and fights for attention during the rushing moments of the day. The voice that at times feels more like your enemy than a friend but is really just growth in disguise. Life will try to distract you. Well not life, but society will try. We can’t help but feel its effects as we move through the world. But life, in its simplest form of nature, will show you the truth, if you slow down long enough to observe it, to listen to the things you deem to be insignificant.
I would encourage you to create a relationship with silence, to be okay with just listening. Learning to be comfortable with silence sets you up to deal with everything else. Silence sets you free. Distracting ourselves imprisons us. We so often run from our own silence because the thoughts in our head dominate our day and tell us things that discourage the brave boldness needed to find out who we truly are. Fight for your soul, fight to know the real you. Question what even I as your parent thinks is right for you. Only you and your soul know what is best for you. But remember, when you dislike me, that I am not your enemy, only a lighthouse helping you to return home to yourself when you need it, or a harbor you can safely reflect and restore within in. I cannot save you, no one can, and the only thing you need to save yourself from is yourself. Only you can save you. All of the outside obstacles are only reflections of the internal edges attempting to soften.
Question society. Society is constantly demanding you put forth a version that they expect, but you need to find what is authentic to the life you want to live. The person that exists without what we as your parent’s have imprinted on you, or the social class you were brought up in, or the friends and family you find yourself surrounded by.
I would also ask that you question even yourself and your own beliefs about life. A beginners point of view is priceless. Try not to get self-righteous or think you’ve got it figured out. If you had it figured out you wouldn’t feel the need to prove it. Life seen in its purest form is humbling. I would ask that you always try to treat others, as you would like to be treated, to put yourself in the shoes of the other and see things from all sides. Try to have compassion for everything you encounter, knowing that we are all on the same journey, walking our own path. We just walk it in a different way, a way you may not understand. Let people be themselves and they will show you the same respect. Always teach by example. If you see something you dislike in someone else, it’s only a reflection of something you need to look at within. Don’t judge anyone, and if you do, forgive yourself and then let that judgment shift into a desire to understand what’s different. Observe those who disrupt you. Let life show you what you need to know by carefully and lovingly taking it all in and discerning what is true for you.
Forgive, because forgiveness feels better then holding onto the pain. What you hold onto haunts and hurts only you, not the person you believe deserves it. Forgive them. Forgive yourself. Forgive the world. Life is perfectly imperfect and the people who wound us are also a strange and beautiful part of the journey to wholeness.
I’d ask that you are patient with yourself and all the questions that plague you, all the unanswered questions that consume you when the uncertainty of life engulfs you. It happens to us all. Nobody has the answers. Nobody. Everyone is faking it. This letter to you may seem like I’m trying to give you answers but I am not. They are just observations I share with love. Observations I have come to by reading the words of the wise who came before me and then testing them out in my own life. I continue to test them and evolve by trial and error. These thoughts are just my experience and I share them in hopes they inspire your own exploration of life. But they are still only my personal experience and I can’t wait to hear how yours is similar and/or completely different.
I’d ask that you find the courage to look at the thoughts that occupy your mind, that enter your heart, the things you fear in yourself, and to face them. The shadow self is a just the terrified reverse of your fearless self. It’s just a part of you waiting to be illuminated and accepted. When we learn to be compassionate toward our flaws we can transcend them. What we run from chases us faster, and what we turn to becomes our strength.
I’d encourage you to never forget, even when you’re eighty years old, that life is always an adventure. We are travelers in a foreign land, here for a short time, to explore it all, embrace it all, love it all, and then to let it all go.
Letting go is something I would try to encourage you to practice every step of the way. It is easy to hold on, it is hard to let go. Everything we love is going to go, that is the law of nature. The idea isn’t to fight for certainty and control what we can, but to become comfortable with uncertainty and let the magic and harmony of life steer our course. We need to not only let the things that haunt us go but the things that give us the most pleasure, because even what brings you the most joy can eventually be the thing that brings you to your knees. Loving detachment is an art. I still don't know how to do it. But the idea is that we must constantly remember the ebb and flow of life and not get attached to either the bliss or the pain. It’s all a part of the big picture endlessly moving between the two. Equanimity is the key to peace. Life is not black or white, but grey, a beautiful grey area where anything and everything can exist, where the unknown becomes the knowable, and the end the beginning.
Give yourself permission to make mistakes. A wise woman named Sophia Loren once said that “mistakes are the dues one pays for a full life” and I believe that to be true. We sometimes learn much more from the things we wish we hadn’t done, then the things we did right. We also learn from the people that don’t fit well with us. They teach us so much, including how to honor and be able to see those that do compliment our nature. Please give yourself permission to not have it all figured out. These difficulties make you vulnerable, and vulnerability is your greatest strength.
Share everything, every inch of your heart and soul, every dream, and every fear. By sharing your fears, they will lose their weight, and by sharing your dreams, they will multiply. Share it all, your sorrow, your joy, your love, your mistakes, your money, your time, and most importantly your love. There is an endless supply we’ve just been taught there isn’t enough. It’s a lie. The biggest lie. Share it all. Share, and never be afraid of what might be taken from you, because what is really yours cannot be taken. If it is taken, and it will be, you must trust you were not meant to possess it any longer, whether it be your lover or your youth, everything runs its course and has its time, just like the seasons, just like night and day, it all is constantly changing and moving into something else. Let it go with trust and be open to what comes next. Remember, none of it goes with you when you die anyway.
Even when it feels like you are living in a tragic drama or light-hearted romantic comedy, try not to lose the importance of each moment. We so often overlook the moment, thinking it is not enough. It is more than enough, and so are you, every step of the way. The moment is the goal, not the minor or major milestones we hit along the road, or the highs or lows of the mountains we walk. Beauty is happening in every moment if we observe and trust that it will all work out. If you are feeling it isn’t working out, I would tell you it’s because you are in the turning point of your story, not the end. In fact, I sincerely believe there is no end only a transition into something greater -- even in death. Life always works out if your moving bravely toward yourself, with spirit, not away from it.
I want to say it again, nobody has the keys to life, including myself. These thoughts are just things I’ve learned along the way that I impart on you in hope that they inspire you in some small way as you embark on this magnificent adventure that lies before you. I’m excited to see how your story unfolds and what you do with this beautiful life you’ve been given. Never forget your life is a gift. Cherish it and have reverence for everything around you and every person who crosses your path. They are you, and you are them. See the through the illusion and it will reveal and impart gifts beyond your wildest imaginings. You can experience heaven on earth -- if you want to.
I love/hate how a song can take you places -- for instance I'm now in Paris France with just the gentle tap of a piano key -- it reverberates through my skin and pulses through my blood into my mind like a tsunami. I can see the end of something unfold all over again in it's rhythm. The sting of something unknown emerging in the lyrics of early spring.
Blossoms and frost wage war over the streets of Saint Germain as our eternal connection sneaks through the subtext of brick walls being born. An emotional world war three is taking place and it's happening at a rate we can't face. No strategy or defense -- only clenched fists and grit.
We both flirt with the waitress. Saying everything we want without saying anything at all. This place is fancy. A glass of champagne slides across the white table cloth soaking it up like a sponge. My glass -- yes, I did that.
A silence so deep begins to drown us both -- decadence and immaturity collide like gasoline hitting a flame. It catches us both off guard. Our mutual frustrations cake and solidify into an unspoken conversation of confusion. The beat of the song hitting each awkward moment in unison with the beat our hearts. We gather our words like arrows and shoot them at each other.
Her anger is hot like a stove and I can feel Paris about to catch fire. The level of defense seems unwarranted and I want to shake some sense into her -- I can't grab hold. She dissolves like water and evaporates in my hands. I hear myself say, "You wanted to come here. I told you not to."
She denies everything. I want to break like a prisoner but my ankle is cuffed to the table -- I'm held hostage by my own projections, struggling to grab hold to the truth of the situation. I'm stuck in a jail of my own making and this understanding is devastating.
Smash cut: we're cramped into a smelly tax - the driver cursing as us in French -- it magnifies our unrest. City details fly by like comets as past lives descend upon and the night continues to implode.
I'm lost in city of love... and suddenly found in the realization that things only have the power we give them -- that she is a gift even in the way she says everything I don't want to hear.
The song on my iPod changes -- Yeah Yeah Yeah's comes on -- it's 2005 and her lips are on my hip. My heart in her lead hands. A different "her", but in hindsight, a familiar situation.
Like a time traveler -- the realization hits me -- I can pick a new song -- something I've never heard -- I do so and the track changes. Suddenly, I'm transported to the precious present carrying a bag of tools -- an arsenal of experience . I create new memories as each strum of the guitar unfolds ... the melody is...
HAPPY THANKSGIVING 2013 (things I am grateful for today)
I.) the hummingbird stuck in my house right now
your gentle wings flap against my window
a wall of glass keeps you trapped
you can see downtown in the distance
an invisible barrier between here and there
i want to rescue you
i can hear my cat scratching the door
behind which he is locked
you softly pant in between fierce flapping
you beautiful omen, you
your exhaustion hurts my heart
panic is making you blind
i’ve been there
in the past
stuck behind an illusion
a prison of my own making
i was the activist and the dictator
i was the window and the world
i pray you slow down enough to see that the door is there
always waiting for you
to fly through
II.) growing up in a nursing home
taught me that life is precious
none of us get out alive
a great reason to stop fucking around
you are worthy of everything you want
so is everyone else
what is yours cannot be taken from you
if you’re holding on tight
it means you should probably let it go
give the world everything
give it all away
it can’t go with you anyway
rapture is what you will gain
the ultimate gift in disguise
a mirror of self love
I am divorcing you fear,
my new mistress is magic.
you illusive teacher
you ball busting bitch
you tornado of gently fury
you bearer of humility
you arrive uninvited
destroying my walls
dissolving my armor
blasting a spotlight on my flaws
but more importantly
your lessons are appreciated
(but maybe next time you could use a flashlight)
today the gratitude for you
is beyond clumsy words
restless summer winds move across
mellow tree branches
sun beaten roof tops
through lonely kitchen windows
to momentarily dance with incense
past the record player
a needle hops along the vinyl edge
humming the 60’s
rubbing a piece of history
jesus hangs on the wall
above the orange and yellow tile
out the bathroom window
around brick buildings
under a black cat
tickling her whiskers
onward through the rusty metal fence
floating up the cracked wooden stairs
under the crevice of a front door
she mixes with red wine
and cigarette smoke
gliding over lovers lips
pale white breasts
leaving goosebumps on unshaven legs
inhaling their secrets and sounds
continuing out french doors
past the plaid curtain
afraid of the dark night sky
over a balcony
trying to hold on to it
begging to stop
but having no such luck
every day she looks for a place to rest
searching for solace
she courts each house she passes through
hoping one will let her stay
oblivious to her own nature
to the facts
to the truth
comes from denying the nature of things.
ETERNITY IS NOW
Life's most significant moments rarely happen in celebration, with tons of commotion, or friends and family around. They are often born in the quiet breathes we take when something ends, sensing something new emerging in the dark night of the unknown. We feel something bigger taking hold. It's terrifying and exciting, but usually unassuming, found in the gentle smile of a stranger, the subtle connection you feel with their mutual longing. Sometimes, if you're lucky, it's seen in the soft light of dawn, as the sun rises after an anxious sleep and the mind settles just long enough to understand we get another day -- and in the deepest part of us, without a doubt, for a second, we know that is enough. We grab onto that feeling, hoping never to forget. We think to ourselves, this must be what the entire ride is about -- a series of experiences giving us an opportunity to love within the confusion and pain of it all. We are left wondering if the paradox is an endless chance, beckoning us to let go and start again -- to love ourselves and others unconditionally. Our existence could be an eternal opportunity to dance with each other in the adventure of uncertainty. Perhaps rapture is always a heartbeat away from us accepting and sharing our desire with another, giving into nature's process, however illogical it may seem, surrendering to our divine inheritance of well-being. Maybe inner peace is a birth right gifted and understood by those who run wild with the knowing and allowing that even the most tragic mistakes, are perfectly imperfect. What if all those seemingly meaningless and insignificant moments are breaking us down and breaking us open to the magic of life. What if all the suffering and bliss is trying to expose us to a universal truth, a vulnerability, a key to a lock we all search for when our sense of security has been taken from us, grounding us down to that place beyond illusion and distraction. Heartbreak might just be the call of the infinite, begging us to see the harmony in chaos. Beckoning us to step out of what we've been told, asking us to believe in the limitless space that lays before us. Maybe that moment, the one that happens over and over again, is life simply asking us to decide what we want to trust in, inspiring us to decide what we'd like to create next.
I'm a museum of mayhem, lost and found in the art lining the inside of my heart.
I excavate through veins, into the arteries of empty space and past mistakes.
I glare at paintings like their stars, begging for answers like crops beg for rain.
I come up with nothing but an army of sorrow and a war of grief splattered across walls like a Pollack painting.
I never really got him anyway.
Deep down I'm a Van Gogh kind of girl,
wild and tender, a misunderstood masochist teetering on the precipice of here and there.
Society's suicide of a man touches a nerve as I catch your perfume in the dusty wind of the desert.
It floats on translucent scorpions and the rhythm of your strings, I load stars like bullets and fire at everything.
BIBLE ON FIRE
I burnt my own bible
Lit that shit on fire
Tore my morality down
Like the Berlin Wall
Stripped off my skin
Like it was a tragic dress
Put my bones back together
Like a Lego Castle
Ripped out my heart
Sowed it back into place
with some bubble gum and grace
Shame equals humility
Humility equals compassion
Compassion equals forgiveness
DEMOLITION (a love letter to your soul)
You've got a bomb shelter full of secrets and a box of dynamite under your pillow. I tried to help you escape, but the door is bolted from the inside. The blood from heartbreak has filled in every crack except for a slit above the door. I wait on the other side. You can't remember how good the light feels, so you draw pictures of sunsets on little notes in an attempt not to forget. Sometimes you slide them through to me.
Your patterns have you locked up like the federal reserve. You're holding on so tight your gold is diminishing at a rate you can't take. Good thing eternity is now, and inflation an illusion. You've forgotten this. You've forgotten that you only get what you're willing to give, that love enters only by letting go. I believe in you. I know you'll remember who are when you're ready. I write this on the back of your drawing and slide it through the door. The silence is deafening. I turn and don't look back. I'll save me and you save you. I take shelter in grace, dancing on the other side of the world, waiting for you to escape. You detonate. I feel aftershocks in the back of my chest. Trust is my bulletproof vest.
I'll meet you at ground zero when the dust has settled and you've risen from the fire. We'll read messages in the ashes and grow a beginning from the end. It will be the healthiest thing that ever was born in either of us. It will be so easy it's terrifying. Our past lives will collide with the present, burning so bright, the entire world will find wholeness in our light.