Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Pale as a Moonflower

Slow breath. Dark bulky sweatshirt, folds and creases rising and falling. Inside you are elsewhere. Floating where it's frayed. Trying to be where it doesn't matter, except it does. Electrodes taped to your chest and abdomen, I watch with the machines, count the depths of your breath. Most of the night I hold your hand, or rest my fingers by your arm. I never take my eyes off you, your closed eyes, the way you are distant and so very close. I understand the frailty; I wonder when a love of life will bloom like dawn across your consciousness. How did we come to this impasse, my love. How do we turn from it?

He is there, loving, bereaved, regretful, angry, guiding you through. Eventually he lies on the cold hospital floor, resting his aching body, while I keep watch. Unwavering my eyes never dimming. The love doesn't go out for an instant, not the whole night through, nor the next day as the watch continues. Unevenly breathing, heart rate fluctuating, I trace every motion on the monitor, its steady throb, the green cursive lines of your life on the screen.

You are a nexus of love to me, a fibrillation of love, your sweet and willful spirit. What pulled you to these depths, what despair swallowed you?

In the long, slow night I fill you with a radiance of healing. Strong warrior luminescence, but I see how the drug invades your mind, the way it overruns your brain like a parasite offering a light sparking like fool's gold, rendering you helpless. You lie prone, barely breathing, too nauseous to move, nearly insensate.

Do I count the minutes like prayer beads?

Each breath a gift, a reclamation of your stolen spirit.

Late the next day when you rise you are pale as a moonflower, slow and unsteady. How can I protect you from what claws at you from within?

When you are mesmerized by death how can I call you back from the underworld, dark realm of Hades?

Your lips are the colour of the narcissus Persephone plucked and followed like a red star into the gaping wound of the earth. You are too young and innocent for what has been thrust upon you.

You have gone with him now, and I pray you are both safe.

Monday, May 28, 2007

Spaghetti Straps are Verboten

Perhaps it's the scapula, or maybe it's the clavicle that's more dangerously libidinal. The scapula is a beautiful bone. A half white wing, a bone that billows over one edge like a wave, a molded piece of clay shaping into a musical instrument, a flute or a set of pan pipes. It's a bone caught in the moment of undulating. It arches from the spine in two melodies, the supraspinous fossa and infraspinous fossa, and the notes slide concavely. The upper part of the scapula is so thin as to be almost transparent. Is that why we can't show the shoulder's delicacy of skin? Or is it the delicate angles of the claviculae that arrest? I once met a woman whose criteria for dieting was until her clavicle bones showed in their sinewy slender grace. Is it the soft shadow of the cleft between the clavicles, or the rounded caput humeri of the humerus, the shoulder bone? Those pectoral girdles are certainly enticing. What drives men to distraction about a woman's bare shoulders that necessitates rules being created about covering them in the corporate world?

Friday, May 18, 2007

Dance of the Solar Wind



"...behind thought I have a musical core. But even further back there's the beating heart. The deepest thought is, then, a beating heart." (Clarice Lispector, Stream of Life, 36)

Monday, May 14, 2007

Appearance of the Glass Blowers

Presently I am immersed, cannot appear clearly. Leaves unfurl in the Spring; who knows how they make the immovable movable, unwrap and flutter in the wind. Fresh, opalescent green. Discovering the sun for the first time, before the caterpillars come, or dry spells of Summer to dim their colour. I write blindly, onto a blank screen because the system can't keep up. The Windows 'hourglass' blinks furiously. It's trying to save me as I write, but so slowly that I write onto a white screen without words; in minutes they will appear. Is that me groping along the white pathway, waiting to appear? When will I, and how to, even in time-lapsed words that foreshadow.

Is love loving me in ways I cannot comprehend. I watch glass blowers, hand-held poles, in and out of the furnace, pure sand from the ancient ocean bed in the middle of the continent, melting silica, forged into light-filled opacity, interior glow, thickness of transparencies, an art. In the furious alembic, boiling at thousands of degrees, coming out to dip into colour, to swirl in a shape, pushed back in to melt for the setting. What experience is teaching, the unfolding of the path, understanding that can glow in the display case for the film that is showing me myself.

Or you. Whoever you are. That I cannot know. What your secret of unfurling is.

On this quiet, cool day, buds are pushing inside, like tiny, green, scrunched wrapping papers. And flowers will unfurl from my head: a flower woman, lying under the earth which is wrapping and unwrapping me. The furnace of sun. In the interior, on the dry ocean bed with the pure sand, its perfection for melting into glass. No, I didn't step onto a shore strewn with tiny natural glass bits but it moved through my vision and fell in beads glittering on the beach. Alchemies of light. To embed light in the density of earth. The earth becomes light through the shining, the way you shine through me like the sun shines through the crystal blown by the glass blowers holding the melting.

Can I become the glass through which you look illumining the world with your light?

Even typing these words that cannot see until they appear?

Thursday, May 10, 2007

Reunion

Reconnection with what is familiar. Like deja vu, only not the strangeness of the unexpected familiarity of a memory that doesn't exist. Rather reconnecting to memories evoked by what has accompanied one through years of living. Scratched perhaps, a little tacky, needing refinishing, but redolent with the past.

As I unpack, my past unfolds before me like one of those cut-out stand-up books of children's illustrations. From each page something springs forth that's newly found. It might be as simple as my Tibetan-patterned duvet or as complex as a filing cabinet of old journals.

The distant rocking of the subway coming into the station in the earth below is like a dim thunder traveling through the soil into my bones. It's simultaneously a rocking, comforting sound and electric. If I am sleepwalking through the days it's because I'm mesmerized by the dream that life is.

It's not just unpacking my household but a voice from the past that's shaken me from the insomnabulism of settling into sameness. I'm re-entering who I am as a different person.

Writing is like scrying, perceiving the deeper truths. I could throw alphabets like yarrow stalks into the air and see how they land, or toss Tarot cards with their symbolism over the bed, or my Chinese coins with their holes in the centre six times and read the prognosis of the I Ching, or hold my blue lapis lazuli pendulum with its fine gold veins by its silver chain and see which way it swings when I ask the secret questions.

We have fiction because life would be far too strange without fabrication.

I survey my boxes of books and clothes and furniture and writing and paintings and am stunned that I still have everything.

How does what we thought was lost become found?



Is reunion a reciprocity that is inherent in existence? Not just breaking apart, the entropy, but 'coming together' itself as a process. When what is familiar returns to its original relation. Or is it that I cannot lose what's mine? I am surrounded by what I have collected. And with this collection comes an identity that I was shorn of when I had nothing.

It's miraculous, yes, but also about reception and acceptance.

We know time and space bend. Was it always curving so that while we thought we were traveling apart we were actually flying towards each other?

I don't mean to speak in riddles, but with reconnections and reunions on different levels I am reverberating in the strangeness of familiarity.

What was past becomes future. Time and space nestle within their own mysteries. I find my past opening like Chinese boxes as I magically find the trail that led to here.

Memory becomes living heritage and I feel I am bequeathed such gifts by a younger self. How to fathom the depth of the love of this deeper reunion?

Friday, May 04, 2007

Shapes of the Phantasmagoric World

I couldn't bear the incoherencies. I wanted writing to fall neatly over the world like a well-made garment, to drape, with tucks and darts, flowing and fitted. But only stitches, bare basting.

Then your visionary eyes, blue like the sunlit sky of the ocean where you fly, composed of brilliant blue light. It's all I can see of you, nothing else remains.

I couldn't establish which seam of thought to follow. It became filled with complexity. Though the simple euphoria of being still existed. How long would I stay where I was? Updating Excel files was a type of work that left me time to write discreetly. Not secretive exactly, but hidden. I don't think anyone cared why the honeybees were abandoning their hives.

Huge chocolate-dipped strawberries, a slice of white cake layered with whipped cream icing lying on its side on the plate, everything dusted with icing sugar, confectionery moments of an office birthday. And fat peonies with rays like white suns, elegant purple irises, labic pink roses, lots of green foliage, bouquet of celebration in a clear glass vase.

A warm, continuous block of radiant energy pours through the window's glass. It adheres to the straight lines of the steel frame but wraps me in a duvet of light. I nap in the sunlight at the food court. This view of sun falling down concrete stairs, rare in the office complex, basking.

Despite the euphoria, the way events take their own momentum once you started the motion, how organized it was, I was ignoring the deep and unsettling crisis that moving is. I knew by the unconscious behaviour of my body, its bleeding, its red tides.

Stress releases deep, unsettling sediments, the systems of the body run awry, raging flow of hormones as I near menopause. While Muslim women pay French doctors to have their hymens re-sewn.

The world moves in on me. My nights spent moving, unpacking, exhausted, muscle-aching, but high, ecstatic. Eyes tear in gratitude. Impossibilities become possible.

My back aches with a pulled muscle and every four hours I take extra strength Ibuprofen. My belly is full of thunder, but the bleeding stops and desire resumes itself in writing.

It wasn't that writing could not occur; it was that no point had occurred. It was from the point of no-point that the writing came, weaving its way from the centre of a spiral in linear circles.

Is it that I bear no apparent relation to myself?

What translates my sensory information into you? With your eyes that are lit from within. That I remember from memory. Sometimes I see the pathways that you passed through, like the embroideries of jets in the sky that have been sewn in smoke.

In the deep interiority, alternatives are indistinguishable.

Or am I only interfering with myself, like the photons in the quantum eraser?

Do I contradict the identity I want to project, leaving a disabling sense of being exposed, when I blush, or stitching words together, write?