Below the Line

There’s a sickness in my soul
It’s filled with self-creating holes
The blood both paint and soap
washing painting losing hope
Entropic forces rip apart
Tear the wholeness of the heart
Ceaseless void and darkened eye
Deep and never-ending sigh


Below the Line

Referential Existence

Words are so remarkably frustrating. They never fully encapsulate what I am trying to convey… the swirl of thoughts and logical strands, the elegant images and buzz of emotions tingling in my veins… they never flow out of my mouth, instead they tumble and crash like the waves on a beach trying to reach the dunes but failing because their shoes have been tied together and so they fall on their face and are dragged back to the sea of confused meaninglessness by the moon, which doesn’t even make any sense because the moon is so far away so how can its influence reach us.  These things, these letters and words are so limiting so constraining so endless so infinite so definable so utterly incomprehensible…

I took a poetry class in my final year of college.  I sat in a desk,
watching our professor try to pull the strands
just enough to let the light come through the impressions painted with pens,
just enough to get a glimpse of the supple curves and delicate skin,
without shedding the fullness of the harsh light that would shatter the seduction.
Just enough to convince us that we are not alone in our aloneness,
that others, too, are thwarted in their attempted sharing of the solitary oneness of self,
looking to the tilted mirrors of those around them, disappointed.1
Yes, and2
That others, too, recognize words as an elegy to what they signify,3
wavering between being and loss, awash in an incommunicable sea of existing.
That others, too, have sensed the strangeness of holding an unusable, yet somehow beautiful, broken tile of memory 4 in hand with a gentle wondering of what to do
that others, too, feel themselves at the center of a powerful and baffled will,5
Yes, and that others, too, are desperately avoiding erasure6
Aware of oblivion’s inevitability7
And the feeling or fact that
what has been done will be done again
and that there is nothing new under the sun8
And that originality is a myth
And that why is ultimately unanswerable

And so,

Vladimir:             What do we do now?
Estragon:             Wait.
Vladimir:             Yes, but while waiting.9


1 Hass, Robert. “The Apple Trees at Olema.” The Apple Trees at Olema. Harper Collins, 2010.
2 Rankine, Claudia. Citizen: An American Lyric. Graywolf Press, 2014.
3 Hass, Robert. “Meditation at Lagunitas.” The Apple Trees at Olema. Harper Collins, 2010.
4 Hass, Robert. “Novella.” The Apple Trees at Olema. Harper Collins, 2010.
5 Hass, Robert. “Misery and Splendor.” The Apple Trees at Olema. Harper Collins, 2010.
6 See footnote 2.
7 Reference to John Green’s The Fault in Our Stars
8 Ecclesiastes 1:9
9 Beckett, Samuel. Waiting for Godot. Grove Press, 1954.

Referential Existence


Hello out there to the few, the proud, and the emotional. 

. . .

This blog:

my blogging cycle

This post:

this post

. . . . . . . . . . . . . .


My Current Life Transition:



Obviously both have pros and cons, good days and bad days, and much more to say about them then I listed.  And I am incredibly grateful for my architecture freelance job. But in general, these seem like some of the biggest differences, a week into the transition:



Gotta get off this computer. My shoulders really are killing me… How did I used to do this for 8 to 11 hours a day?!


Beneath the Insomnia

_20160923_184552.JPGShe paints the same canvas
Again and Again
In her dreams
while they sleep
and it sleeps.
Because otherwise
they never stay still
long enough
to dry
Her tear
drops of paint
That leave trails
of subtle color
behind them
And behind them
previous paintings
also made without brushes
That always end up
painted over
the next morning
to hide the evidence

And the canvas of it all
Is her face
and her fears
For at the core of each night
when stripped down
She will always find that stark white woven surface
of fears and insecurities
whose texture shows through each layer
And whispers to her
between brushstrokes
Reminding her that
There is no escape
For gravity cannot be bribed
And the running never stops because he’s holding death in his hands, at her head, and as the neurons fire she finds they sound remarkably like gunshots and all she seeks is safety and sleep
But she can never find foundness
Awake or asleep
So as she tries to decide which one is less terrifying,
She paints.

at the core of each night
mare each poem each painting,
Remains a reminder of running,
is running.

Beneath the Insomnia


brick low resThe small finger traces the maze of mortar, sliding through streets that run between buildings of brick in a vertical city
and that finger doesn’t know that a standard mortar joint is assumed to be 3/8″
And that brick sizes are determined based on that assumption
And that Frank Lloyd Wright spec’d colored mortar to accentuate horizontality
And that even though the little pig was protected by his house of bricks that the walls of home can’t protect from everything
Because so much of this world is a facade
And it’s the wood framed interior that goes up in flames
And the mold of sadness in the basement that slowly creeps in
And the termites of time eating away at the bones
But her bones are still young
And her skin is still soft
And her eyes are still smiling
For they haven’t yet witnessed the things that huff and puff more viciously than that wolf.

If only the shelter of childhood was built to house us all.




Her signature unknowingly picked up the gauntlet
that he unknowingly dropped.
And this unknown challenge was both imaginary and impossible:
there were no rules and all the rules,
nothing was defined and everything was.
With no weapons and all the weapons,
it was all and nothing

Like the space between walls

that we call rooms

And the pauses between words

that we call necessary

But his homelessness felt all too familiar
Longing for the lives and places that were no longer his
Now existing in an obsession with isolated oscillation
A mouthful
Of memories
Creating the pieces she held between her fingers, trying to place
Because she was accustomed to the lonely company of puzzles
Wanting their wholeness for their own sake
For she imagined she knew what it felt like to be shattered into 1,000 pieces and placed in a box on a shelf for a rainy day

But this one,

this one was like the one at Goodwill –
Where she was startled by the violent eye contact made across the room
While standing in the checkout line
And he walked in through the door
And neither knew what the rulebook had to say about this
So he disappeared amongst the shelves
And she out the door.
But now every time she goes back
She can’t help but feel her stomach drop out of her torso
Like it did in that moment
In the store with the puzzle himself –
Who never gave her the satisfaction of having all the pieces

So instead of admiring the whole
It’s the gap that holds her attention,
The emptiness that drives her insane
As she sits still trying to determine if anyone won
Amidst all the losing.


Tongue released: Brain tried for misconduct

my tongue is tied in knots and not speaking only causes everything to build up to the brim, the sea of the seen welling up to my head from my heart – overflowing out of my eyes that are leaking (at least they should be) the why is because my hands have been resting, testing the waters, at least that’s the excuse I will make, but it’s fake, for really I am scared and normal (and scared is normal) and really my eyes only leaked two or three times since before, I am fine, really.

…but who is looking for fine, really.  The best of the best or the worst of the worst for if I see one more generic landscape painting, one more adorable wide-eyed kitten, one more “5 five ways to flatter abs” I think the fineness of it all will overtake me and the mundanity will take my insanity, for all of it is playing a game, aiming to make us all sane, painless and numb, too dumb to speak anything new or original, for there is none of that anyway, so what do we do with these tongues of ours besides tie them in knots out of fear of not being anything other than normal.

. . .

It has been a while since I have written anything on here.  (It’s funny that life can go on without my online presence, regardless of however insistently opposed to that idea social media seems to be.)  There was a chunk of time when the increase in audience, however small it may be, really affected the way I was thinking about my blog.  One effect, that I foresaw to some degree, was an increased timidity: too timid to write anything new for fear of offending, hurting, or being judged.*  (And with the recent increase in talk of race – a topic I have been wanting to write about since having read Claudia Rankine in poetry class – I have become even more fearful of being misunderstood) However a secondary effect took me by surprise: the feeling that I must only post the best.  The best writing, the best experiences, the best insights.  And if things aren’t going well, then I must post the best of the worst. (aka deep insights into my pain, poetic lamenting, coherent arguments, etc.)

But honestly, my life is pretty normal.  My writing is pretty mediocre.  My daily activities and thoughts aren’t very earth-shattering.  But I don’t want to waste your time by posting things that aren’t “worth reading.” And that means I don’t stop to try to write anything worth reading because nothing has really happened…nothing except, ya know, just, my life.  ((And THEN I internally debate if this the “right or wrong” response…If I only feel the need to keep up with a blog because I am part of the technology generation or because I know it helps keep me sane or because I feel this pressure to keep friends/family updated…have you noticed that I tend to overthink basically everything?)) So, if I disappear for a while it’s probably because I am just making dinner and buying groceries and watching children and hanging out with friends and have decided that you could just go on Pinterest to replace anything I would post.

(Or because I have been too lazy to download all of the Alaskan cruise photos off of my camera…or because I fear I won’t have anything deep and insightful to say about the trip and will ruin my “intellectual, deep-thinker persona” haha…just kidding…but also totally serious… Let’s be honest, you kind of expect that of me, don’t you?  Some long rambling post about societal norms and emotions and poetic writing?  Or maybe you don’t and I have it all wrong…I’ll start posting pictures of cats… not that there’s anything wrong with posting pictures of cute cats! Just not my thing… oh no, now I offended all of the internet cat people…time to go back into my hole, as my dad would say, no offense dad, you just say that so I was just saying it because you say it not to make fun of you…oh no….speaking of my foot lodged in my mouth..)

So with that totally ridiculous post out of the way, I am going to write a list here so that you read it and I read it and so that I actually write about these things because I genuinely want to (and I genuinely want to have conversations about these things) but haven’t had the discipline to actually do it yet (also I was on a boat in the middle of the ocean for a week, so there’s that):

  • Short book reviews of recently read books (from signing for babies to danish education to poverty memoirs to dystopian fiction)
  • Alaskan cruise photos and stories! (also, visiting Seattle)
  • Race, Claudia Rankine, Citizen, and Whiteness
  • Things I am learning about personalities
  • The Generation of Sarcasm and Cynicism

If those sound lame, well, no hard feelings. :) If one sounds better than the others…COMMENT.  I would love nothing more :)  except maybe a replenished stock of mint chocolate chip ice cream…


* Prior to my blog presence on Facebook and Instagram only strangers could read what I was sharing.  Inviting my personal world into my deepest thoughts and fears was a lot harder (and a lot more impactful) than the invitation to the general population of the internet.  There is something to be said about anonymity and freedom.  At least if I offend someone, I won’t run into them at the grocery store. Or if I share a struggle, I know that I won’t have to worry about someone mentioning it in conversation when I am unprepared to discuss it.  But I have also found that while some of my posts have led to difficult conversations with the people in my life, they have also led to deepening of conversations, opening the door for more real and intimate connection.  It’s interesting how much easier it is to talk about something (e.g. expressing fear, hopes, struggles, anger; admitting doubt or error) once someone else has already broached the topic.  Don’t you find that you are more open to be honest and open with someone who has already been honest and open with you?  Nobody wants to be that person who expresses some deep part of their soul to have it laughed at or thrown back at them.  So we play it safe and remain guarded.  We turn everything into parody.  We chose sarcasm over authenticity.  We make a mockery of our fears and flaws and insecurities in hopes that others won’t see how broken, scared, and helpless we really are – or if they do, well, at least we said it first.  …..or, is that just me?



Tongue released: Brain tried for misconduct