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if only

November 16th, 2015

flower2Today I attended a holiday boutique with my lovely, talented, oldest daughter, who was showing her hand-made aprons. The show was in a a hair salon. It is more modern I suppose, than when my mother had been their client many years ago, but essentially the same. I recognized it right away.
My mother had thick, unmanageable hair. Today there are many products that could have made her life easier, but back then she resorted to keeping it cut short and styled simply, so that she had to struggle with it less.
I don’t know how long she had been going to that salon, but it seems that the stylists had started calling her Brillo hair.  Brillo is a product made of thin wire and soap, used for cleaning pots and pans. How terribly sad. How cruel we can be to one another. if only continued »

rain

November 1st, 2015

rain-300x170-300x170burning black sand

extravagantly bright flowers 
quite suddenly dripping
 with warm rain
 that pounds the earth with unreasonable fury

in a moment, the rain is gone 
and the sand is burning hot again

violence is not rain

it does not simply stop.

bravery is necessary

yet one time more 
than you believe is in you

run

before you cannot


storm

October 24th, 2015

winter-storm-300x143suddenly the storm is me
my emotions rage and tear the air 
like debris tossed about in a wild wind

i will not be peaceful if it means dying with the words suffocated behind my lips

i will not be a shadow any longer
i must stand in the light
even if it is a storm

merciless

September 8th, 2015

Image-5downcast eyes, twisted smile,

she thinks that she is hiding the pain
dancing on a wire

to a tune played by her leading man

it is a frantic dance,

a carefully choreographed ballet.
any flat look of disappointment sends ice into her heart

there is no end to the music

no breather between sets

she must anticipate each twirl and spin

for failure is unthinkable

and punishment is swift

when she finally sleeps,

her dreams are wastelands.

sadly, she still hopes to please

to find what is lacking, repair the breach, 
and return to the fairy tale

she seems brittle,

as though truth would open her veins


time

July 14th, 2015

IMG_4912time is crashing into me
heavy
demanding

i have bared my soul to the universe so that
perhaps
one
woman might live a better life

i hope it is enough

destiny

June 6th, 2015

I never wanted to bring children into a world where an idiot with a red button could end every living thing in moments, or, where nuclear fallout could make survival worse than death. What a fool I was. I thought the world was too dangerous for children, but my relationship with their father was the real poison in our lives.

hiding place

I was not his victim. I realize that now. I could have walked away a thousand times before I became so stuck in my own mind that escape seemed impossible. In the end, I became my own victim. I decided to believe that the things he said about me were true, his estimation of my worth as a human being, and my abilities as a parent.

He said that I would never leave him because I could never make it on my own, that I would never be able to support our children. And I decided to believe that I needed him. I decided to believe that I was helpless without him. I decided that it was my destiny to have that life, and that I deserved my fate. destiny continued »

stupid, worthless, fat/skinny, ugly bitch

February 1st, 2015

twisted trees

“Nobody will ever love you like I do, you f*ing bitch.”

If you have heard this, you are being abused.

If someone has told you, repeatedly, that you are worthless, stupid, fat/skinny, ugly, and/or completely unlovable . . . will you, in the end, believe this? If you have been continually abused with words, hatred and violence, will you, at some point, begin to believe that you deserve this treatment?

Abusers use repeated verbal attacks to break down your self confidence and strength. If you just hadn’t done that (whatever) . . . It’s your fault that I had to do that. . . Why did you have to go and say/do (whatever) and make me do that . . . ? It’s all your fault!

stupid, worthless, fat/skinny, ugly bitch continued »

abuse

December 18th, 2014

rain flowerinterpret the word however you like.
if you have absolutely no power in your relationship,
no control over your own life
and no hope
this is abuse.

stalemate

October 16th, 2014

pink flowers monterey garden

I had a dear friend once. She was originally from England. She had a uniquely marvelous perspective on the American world. She was one of the few truly honest persons I had ever known. I loved her within minutes of meeting her.

I came to learn that her husband was terribly critical of her. He found fault with everything she did or said. They seemed to love having company, but he would embarrass her mercilessly in front of guests. Having been there, done that I watched her face as he denigrated on her in the company of their friends. She put up a brave face, but I saw the tiny wrinkles in the corners of her eyes, I knew she was crying inside. I also knew that there was trouble brewing.
stalemate continued »

i saw the play

June 18th, 2014

Image 1 It’s been thirty plus years since I left my abuser. Thirty years, and still, the reminder of one moment, all that time ago, can steal my breath.

Not any particular moment. There were a lot of bad moments back then. It can be just a random memory, even a sound, or a smell, but most of the time it happens in conversation.

People say things. People who know, somewhere in the back of their minds, that you had a hard time way back when. After all this time, no one would think that an offhand comment could do any harm. Why would they? It’s not personal to them.
i saw the play continued »