“If someday the moon calls you by your name, don’t be surprised, Because every night I tell her about you.”
…we still will not leave, not until you force us to, with repeated betrayal…
…or with indifference…
We’ll just keep you at arms length, and you not even know the difference, other than the air somehow smells different, the food tastes narrower, and the golden light of the sun is a bit muted…be worried then.
I will never turn back.
I will never not Love God…why do you keep making that a condition?
When God has chosen (for what reason I know not, certainly not based on any merit I have, being the worst example of a human being that has walked the planet) to reveal Themselves, Their Beauty, well…
…the one to whom the revelation is given is slain forever…wounded forever and will forever bleed
and love and love and love.
This is not about me, or about righteousness…it is about adoration.
I shall always always love Them, for They are Good and Kind, Clean and Pure, and have no shadow or smell of evil in Them.
If me renouncing Them is a condition for you, then you might as well go rave at Kilauea, go worship Krakatoa (if you can find him, blown apart in his own powerous pouty poofery)! Go lay hands on gouts of liquid rock, let them run through your fingers and clench down their flow and see what happens…
your flesh will not burn nor melt neath their heat…for you are ice and icy, austere in your inviolate Olympus of self, and I find myself cast out of your heaven and consigned to your outer darkness midst the sound of your gnashing teeth…But you have thrust me deeper into that side pierced and bleeding…you have pushed my face into His Heart Bloody with Boundless Love…you have cast me on my Mama’s Breast (the one for me, contained in Her deeps, She: El Shaddai, the Many Breasted One with place for whosoever will…even you, dearest, even you…no…especially you).
I am my Beloveds’ and They are mine…it is by Their Hand and Word and what can I do?
To even renounce is to affirm for I use the Voice They gift to utter forth a word and thus it turns and leads me home again…
I will never
turn from Them, for with Them have I trusted my soul and I shall seek Them all the days of my life.
And the rest of you…who think that I have fallen into “sin”, into “sexual perversion”, into (you don’t even know, you just “know” it’s bad and tragic)…to the rest of you?
I cannot convey to you how truly irrelevant to life and love your gossip and gibbering is. It is as consequential to me and my fate in the Hands of the Lord God Almighty as a flea is to the ocean.
I love Jesus and follow Him, for He has accepted me and declared me His own and worthy.
I love Holy Spirit, blessed Holy Spirit, my Mama who calls me Her own and instructs me in Her way.
I love Father…who is good and kind and generous and forgiving and always always smiling on me in the darkness.
I care not if you read this and judge me…don’t you get it yet? My faith is not about you, and it never will be. It just isn’t. I no longer live to try and impress you, or please you, or deserve you.
I do not require you to say or do or believe or be like me in order to connect and laugh and love and live…why do you lay such requirement on me? Because you will never get it.
I will never leave Them. Never.
Found, at last, and in Them I shall dwell forever.
sometimes i run out of words
(yeah, me, speaker of torrents
dropper of waterfalls
fountains of rivers
of words and more words)
how can i talk this feeling away
when i feel so ugly in every way?
how to describe that gulf so vast
laying between the me i feel
and the me i see?
looking out from inside this place
and seeing with heart-eyes
beauty where others recoil
and horror that others call beauty
and me always out of step?out of my time, out of my place
in my own rhyme but dissonant chime
to the swan song of youth
and its foolish pronouncements
so expertly made with no history?
and words fail me,
no…i fail them, words.
and i am lost in seas of ugliness
and i am stuck in swamps of clumsiness
and i am doomed in deserts of desire
and no words
Here’s What’s Okay (And Not Okay) to Say to a Trans Person – Once and For All — Everyday Feminism. Dear Constance, this article will be good review for some, and a great beginning for those who are interested but don’t know protocol.
The one that is most crucial to me? The one that says my story is mine and not yours…and you have no right to out me to anyone…even though people have done this to me. It’s sorta weird to meet someone I knew then and hear that there is all kinds of gossip about me happening…that means that the paragons of virtue who told me I was beyond a river they refused to cross and that I was demonized?
They started the rumors and passed them along…and likely think they served Jesus in doing it. The trouble they caused me…I weep still at times over things that I could have shared in my own way and time that got shared and soo distorted… …but that’s the way it goes when you deal with the privileged…whatever they say is God’s will becomes God’s will…
It’s getting so old, so tired,
and it acts so new, so hep
It’s mere cold-love
all-dolled up in
and cheap mascara.
Nowadays it masquerades
as a mantra, this year’s model
on last year’s red carpet walk
while the fawning gather
while cold love kisses hearts
with curses, vows, orders
to walk away quick at the first sign
of imperfection or humanity.
Well, I like the trees that twist in the moonlight
and scrabble hard on the stones
and grab rocks, not to throw
but to grind into dirt
and eat from!
Joshua, Bristle Cone, Pinyon,
yeah, I’ll take them anyday,
thorns, stingy stubbornness
and faithful all day long
ain’t no walk-away in them
ain’t no easy walk-way,
and my kind of people
those bristly-ass trees of
gnarled stubborn stick-to-it.
Big Mamas and lil mama
with a call of wake up
the moon is up
and canyon calling clear
in the night,
away from the easy walk-away
and into the long present
…it turns your UGH into an Awwww…
I am upside down and now ya look like a cat-lover!! YAAAAYYY!!!
*Charissa pokes and needles in joy*
“I have noticed that when all the lights are on,
people tend to talk about what they are doing –
their outer lives.
“Sitting round in candlelight or firelight,
people start to talk about how they are feeling –
their inner lives.
They speak subjectively,
they argue less,
there are longer pauses.
“To sit alone without any electric light is curiously creative.
I have my best ideas at dawn or at nightfall,
but not if I switch on the lights –
then I start thinking about projects,
“and the shadows and shapes
of the house become objects,
not suggestions, things that need to done,
not a background to thought.”
— Jeanette Winterson, “Why I Adore the Night”
I love thought that runs in this fashion…not on “eros” as a topic…but the way in which it is discussed.
This is Signifier and Signified Thinking and a good example of it.
“Eros is an issue of boundaries. He exists because certain boundaries do. In the interval between reach and grasp, between glance and counterglance, between ‘I love you’ and ‘I love you too,’ the absent presence of desire comes alive.“But the boundaries of time and glance and I love you are only aftershocks of the main, inevitable boundary that creates Eros: the boundary of flesh and self between you and me.“And it is only, suddenly, at the moment when I would dissolve that boundary, I realize I never can.”
Constance…you are all so kind to me, supportive and for me. And sometimes, you just put your feet right in it, and not even know it!
Because your comments are not intended to harm or other or police me, I nearly always do not give a clue as to how they have hurt me…but they do.
Like when you say “Oh wow, you’re looking so great today girl, and you’re gonna look even better when you get that 5 o’clock shadow” lasered off”
*OOooffff!* That hurts…especially because there are many cis-females that have more naturally occurring facial hair than I do!
Or this one was particularly cutting: “Why don’t you consider getting your Adam’s Apple shaved? It will make you look more feminine”…
…so I went home and cried after that one…cus lots of reasons, but one of the biggest is that there are many drag queens and transvestites who look 100% feminine and completely identify as gay males and in no way consider themselves female…while here I am, female thru and thru and yet told that I need a shave of my Adam’s Apple to look (read “be”) more feminine.
Or “you sound like a boy so you are a boy”…wow, don’t know where to go with that one because here is the fact: any human being whose vocal cords are exposed to testosterone is going to have those cords damaged by that exposure and it will be permanent, irreversible damage. The result is that person’s voice will then deepen, coarsen, and sound like what we have been socialized to believe that men sound like and not women.
I would add one that the author leaves out: we trans-folk are not your personal research assistants! “Why Charissa, whatever do you mean?” Here is what I mean: many of you have taken baby steps out into the jungle, and trans-misogynist tigers have roared loud at you, eyes glaring…and you scurry to me and say “CHARISSA!!! There’s beasties out there! Give me some bullets PDQ!!! What do I say???!!”
Umm…so here is what I want you to know: we are not born the “Golden Child of all knowledge trans!” We were born inside these skins, as tabula rasa as you…what we learned was from hard work, investment of time, research, learning Google-Fu and using it, and then more of the same! The information is out there…the same things I found and tested and tried and learned.
I cannot be an ally for you! You either are or you aren’t.
You can’t just show up when it’s convenient, and expect me to carry the ball the rest of the time, give you your lines, take all the arrows so you won’t be harmed…I am already taking arrows and dealing with that.
It’s the nature of being an ally…get some skin in the game.
It makes me heartsick when “allies” come around because they need something, but they aren’t around when I am under assault and feel like I am fighting the Battle of Bastogne all by myself.
Oh…and please, PLEASE: don’t get all hurt and go away pouty when you ask me to give you all the answers and I reply with “It’s out there…go dig!”
Allies…by now, you could be eating meat…why do you content yourself with milk?
Awwright…lecture over…go read the article if you still are here LOL!!
When we talk about biological sex being “what’s between your legs,” we’re forgetting that sex is actually much more complicated than that. Genitalia, chromosomes, hormones, and secondary sex characteristics all contribute to our assigned sex at birth, but ultimately, sex is just that: assigned.
Biological sex is a social construction, meaning it’s something we as a culture have created. That’s not to say it isn’t relevant to our health or that it doesn’t influence our personal realities, but the categories of “female” and “male” must be recognized for what they really are.
…but you still have to open the cover and read
Love you, Dearest Darling!!! You’re the Best Grinch Ever
…and as these moments roll along
across the mountains, over hills
and I listen to soft windsong
because your voice has grown so still
and time passes, by waterfalls
while clouds grow black and threatening
and sulfurous gouts of thunder roll
and lightning graphs your fearsome name
it’s silences and storms these days
my heart is torn in these two ways
the words I need, you fail to speak
the words that kill…they slice my cheek
and also cheek I turn to you
and that one, that one, then…adieu
i find myself alone, just me
winds, waterfalls have set me free
to see you in your silent tower
and you in thorny violent bower
and you who will not talk at all…
it’s you who’s deaf to Love’s pure call
I’ll sit me here in peace, just so
and breathe the earth’s exhales, and know
I’m fine in Jesus’ nail scarred hand
And marked forever with Grace’s Brand
This was very early on…I had internally chosen transition, but I was waiting. I wanted to interact with family members and discover what response if any may result from the news of my gender journey.
At the end of that year those discussions occurred and support/affirmation was given, so I embarked on the journey.
Since then much has changed…
I doubt that I would have gone forward had I known then what I know now.
But then again, that’s why God set up time the way it is. Because the truth? In spite of the horror words spoken and the ineffable sadness of those words that used to be spoken not being spoken now, I am better off for the transition.
Fascist Architecture and all that.
It’s hard to know if all the things presented in evidence against me now were there all along and just hidden…or if they are the after-the-fact distortions of individuals who are deep in major cognitive dissonance now…certainly I feel like the email/artifact record presents a dramatically different story…I lived a dramatically different story!
No matter…it is what it is now, and those things are held as axiomatic and reality.
Anyway…this poem was at the very beginning…such naivety, such anticipation!
long letters, diatribes, litanies…
…i prefer cats.
short notes/band aids for skin deep cover…
…i prefer cats.
silences/absences or being on to-do lists…
…i prefer cats.decisions made/enforced and handed down hard…
…i prefer cats.soft.
minds of their own.
love hidden in kitty paws
and Mama purrs
and rough comfort tongues.
I prefer cats
Oh Constance…it boggles my mind how much has changed.
How much has changed…
It’s good that I knew not what would happen…and yet, no way I would go back.
Back to the bondage of those days, back to discontents concealed and blame laid up yet hidden and at the ready to be doled out…back to that skin, that servitude to a virus that has infected this entire planet and its mammon-serving economic blood.
Bruce Cockburn said this…in his amazing song “Fascist Architecture”
“you tore me outta myself alive”.
Here is the link to last year’s poem written on Father’s Day…it makes me laugh ruefully…I was so proud of it.
I was so proud of us…thinking we would be different than…better than.
Pride was my downfall, as it is for every person prideful.
Praise our God of Grace and Humility, for Their Mighty Deliverance and Salvation from the Hell of ourselves!
Why don’t you click Play on Bruce below…listen to him tell the truth, and read of my naive optimism?
Thank God that though optimism fade in the heat, Faith remains unconquerable!
One year later,
in this year of grace
I sit in stillness
ringside once again
but only with dead ashes,
I know it has to happen, yes
this death of me, this death
of who I was, no…
what I was, or rather
what you thought I was
and what I wasn’t too.
You thought me as a god,
and just a little lower than a god.
Your “glorious glorious father”
shining strong and tall,
quick and certain, no one knew
that was but wooly curtains drawn
over a stage making the ready
for a play to become real-life…
But…what’s a child to do when god betrays?
When god is thus unfaithful and capricious…
that god must become monster,
and vicious harsh taskmaster,
when god must be recast as sick pretender
(your words, love, not mine, those are your words)
as just the “other”, empty, just a mask?
Well, Nietzsche showed the way, now dint he?
He sussed the death of God and birth of crisis…
He understood the very underpinnings
of everything are quivering like liquid,
all foundations kicked asunder
and this hollow edifice
left floating in the shell-pink air.
Nietzsche called for total transformation,
he demanded blood, the death of God,
and also everything He stood for.
I get it…I do…the death of god
No really, I know it’s me, not you…
Problematic in my breathing
and offensive in my joy, well
this aggression will not stand, man!
And so it is that I must die…well,
he must die and be defamed
for every single gripe,
complaint or wound or sling
he must be destroyed
because he wasn’t He
and now it’s clear
that he would never be…
but I will be…me.
Go ahead, beloveds,
it’s true that I must die
so you can be set free
and God at last can finally BE
that God of Wonder
far beyond the Galaxy,
high above and right beside us
bringing life again to you and me.
Use what silver knives you have
(I placed them in your hands so long ago,
carefully planned, bequeathed to you your
weapons of words, of music and of comprehension).
Use the ropes you find inside your packs,
laid lovingly from Lorien in wonder
and in sober long anticipation yes,
that someday your blood be required
of me and on my head as well
(but it’s in my heart forever).No crucifix for me, how gauche,
how gothic and old fashioned!
No…a shiny scaffold glittery
erected stainless steel there, gleaming
austere, so implacable
and one thin razor wire noose
with my neck’s name writ there
(except it’s not so plain as all that)
no…the old name that speaks of
I have confidence in you
(this is not stupid or myopic,
this is love, Lovelies).
I see this execution
is but you living out
what I have taught you
that there is no god but God
(not even glorious father)
and all things that you love
descend from His Great Goodness
and Mama’s bag of riches
I wish you all good always
and hope that someday your mouth won’t be cursed
with this burnt aftertaste of death,
and me just acrid curse to you…
if my death expiate your soul
and bring release and freedom to you all
then quick, oh Hangman, let the black bell toll
and pull your lever that I may hard fall
and on you live, free
building brave new worlds
but I will still be like those flickering fires
that linger in my mind while I sit here
beside this ring of ashes never warm
and those seats empty in this quiet storm
“The madman jumped into their midst and pierced them with his eyes. ‘Whither is God,’ he cried; ‘I will tell you. We have killed him—you and I! All of us are his murderers…Do we not feel the breath of empty space? Has it not become colder?…Do we smell nothing as yet of the divine decomposition? Gods, too, decompose. God is dead. God remains dead. And we have killed him.'”
There’s a stone in your body
where heart used to be
there’s a hurt in my heart
where your smile ran so free
there’s an echo of you
deep within, here in me
but your voice trails off
You have wandered so far afield
into the satin night
while I am touching
the circle of golden light
shed by the memories
of what we shared,
what we might share again,
if you’d stayed within sight
and let love be our shield,
let love be our shield…
But I wear your flowers in my tresses, braided
in my hair the scent of your laughter, it lingers
longing for you to return and to claim
those words that you uttered then, sitting so empty,
forlorn, blurred and muttered without clarity
and without true commitment
to something beyond the grave,
waiting to rise again,
new…rise again, new…
It’s not that far, really,
when you consider
the arm’s reach
or the stride
But that distance
between you there
and me here
in its elasticity
in its plasticity
it grows and shrinks
with the mood
of the moon
and the shades
of your heart
rolling up sunny
pulling down flinty
and all laid just so
at the feet of that
lead based busy god
pretending at time.
I wish I could
escape the shell
of time and dance
in a twinkle
and a dash
Dear Constance…there is a graphic floating around Facebook these days, and it creates quite a few conflicting emotions inside me. Generally speaking, it shows up on pages of people who are known to be compassionate, usually also quite passionate, and also people who are pretty gosh dang strong spiritually, emotionally, and intellectually. They are enthusiastic, with big hearts and even bigger tents, and they do not suffer fools lightly and they do not suffer shirkers at all.
I like that they post the graphic because they are doing what they do best in the action: establishing ally-ship and striving to exhort their fellow human on to better places. It is sort of a reverse litmus test for me, in that it shows me someone who cares enough to reach out…enough to listen…and most likely won’t bail when the going gets tough because they eat tough for breakfast and spit out butt-kicking for lunch.
But the graphic is problematic for me…and I suspect likely is for others as well, who have fought for our lives against that relentless Nazgul crossed with a Balrog called depression. Churchill called it his “black dog”…um, Winnie allus was known for his gift of understatement.
So the graphic itself is at the bottom of the post…scroll down and read it please, or wait til you work your way thru my thinking (your choice)…
Please know that these are my thoughts and conflicts regarding the graphic itself and are in no way, shape, or form any sort of comment on the motive or intention of anyone who posted it. As I said, I know the places I have seen it the context of that person’s online presence is as an ally and friend and nothing else.
First off, it is generally preceded by a line that says something like “I am a therapist, and I have this poster in my office. Apparently it has saved lives so I am posting it here”. Now that is the first thing that I find troubling, because the therapists I have seen wouldn’t have a poster like that in their office, because generally speaking their offices tend toward the neutral or the abstract, because therapy isn’t about the therapist, it’s about the client. And that leads me to believe that the graphic was in fact created by a well meaning person who has given their decidedly normal thoughts about a decidedly abnormal condition…one that is truly not depictable in terms of what it is, how it feels. I have tried for years and never found a way that suffices.
If you don’t suffer from depression, and I don’t mean feeling sad, or going thru a trial, or grieving, I mean depression, then you just do not really know.
Now, in general I don’t like things that are posted and purported to have occurred, even when I might like the story or the outcome…if we need to rely on a fabrication to make our point, then we are using a shortcut to relationship and not being fully authentic…I read of miracles that supposedly happen, or students who supposedly said things to professors, or any number of things like that which get passed off as real and are in fact in urban legend territory.
So to summarize my initial take, the actual poster being in an actual therapist’s office I question…it could be…but wow does it not jibe with my own experience.
Secondly…I would never say something like what is reported to someone who would then call me “somebody”…like people are just coming up right and left and saying something like that so blatantly and clearly.
No…it just isn’t like that. First off there is a huge cloud of shame that overlays a person with true depression. They have been told all their life to “snap out of it”, to “straighten up and fly right”, to “wipe that puss off yer face”… “Laugh and the world laughs with you, weep and you weep alone”… and worse. So you internalize right away that your very existence is transgressive because you feel something that is not okay and you should not feel it and thus it is a self-fulfilling prophecy about how awful you are and depression increases and over and over again.
So that shame itself would preclude such a straightforward statement. No…that reads to me like someone has an opinion and something to say about depression and about their acquaintances who suffer from it.
The cries for help are far more subtle and conflicted, and quite often are hidden…even from the one making them. It is not until after the fact that they are seen as cries for help…and here is the real killer. When I was in the worst of it, I did not think there WAS any help to be had, so I would not waste breath asking for any…it was a deadly f**king duel to the death between me and depression, and it took everything I had to make it to the next minute, and the next and the next…and it is never halftime, it is never the end of a set…it is f-ing triple match point ever g dam second of every quadruple match minute in every hail mary hour of every we need a miracle day.
And this notion of helplessness is introduced by the maker of the graphic…not the person who reportedly made the statement…notice that? Supposedly someone has reported they have severe suicidal ideation and they are asking for a reason not to do it…and from that the word helplessness is entered into the discussion…a straw man that is then whipped on the rest of the way. I won’t even get into the legal aspects of a therapist’s obligation as a mandatory reporter when someone has made such a direct statement of intent.
Helplessness has nothing to do with this. It comes from the imagination of someone outside of the cloud, who imagines what it is like for the one they imagine to care about (I am speaking of the creator of the graphic, not anyone who posts it).
Thirdly…depression is more like mustard gas than it is like Hitler. It is a fog, a smothering force that slips thru your fingers when you seek to wrestle it and defeat it. It doesn’t “beat you up” or call you names…it just chokes you, drains you, takes you captive and enthrall…and after you have breathed it long enough, for all intents and purposes you are those things, ugly…stupid…pathetic…or in my case, you simply think it would be better if you simply had never been. Suicide is tempting but it doesn’t fix anything because then you hurt everyone else around you and it is the utter proof of your failure…so you just hang there like Prometheus, ravens and vultures gnawing away at you…and you suffer…and suffer…and suffer…
Fourth…my tummy hurts when I read the simile of a marine…honestly, I detest that comparison first of all, and secondly the marine has it easy by comparison. The reality is more like this: you are America and you have the might of history’s greatest military at your disposal…and your enemy is immune to every attempt to repel it…without exception. So you would never be like this “Give me a stick. I’m not dying out here.” (Nevermind how this contradicts the beginning place of the person who has ideated suicide to the place of a plan even…)
Here is where I started to get agitated…the assumption that a cry for help is an obligation to the listener to “take pity on you”. And do you see the phraseology in the graphic…the writer says “…makes it sound like I’m supposed to take pity on you.” There is a bit of a combative undercurrent here…a peeved ness that masquerades as exhortation and bucking up someone…it pretends to be a “hail fellow well met” bonhomie and backslapping encouragement…but the back slapping is that too hard by half walloping that the tricky conniving bully gives the lil kid so as not to get caught…and it communicates to me “hmmm…better be more careful to keep my guard up around this person. Mustn’t let them see beneath cus they feel like what I may or may not say creates a “supposed to” for them.
I have never asked for pity…that is a worthless appearance that says more about the giver than who it is offered to. In fact, part of the issue with depression is you never ask anything of anyone! And to have someone think that they know the slightest thing about my insides and that war and then characterize their perception as me asking for pity!!??
And then the last lil part sadly feels like a mini-lecture to me…correcting me in however I might be mischaracterizing things as depression when in truth I am mistaken: my depression is just the manifestation of the will to stay alive.
Wow…it is hard for me to look at the sunny in disposition, the asskickers and asskissers who get thru life with an emotional get out of jail free card…and have them lecture me about the will to survive. It soo reminds me of men who mansplain how “not all men” and privileged people who complain at how hard they have it and see how they overcame so just do like I did and yada yada yada…
and then at the end…after the walloping, having the whole thing said to be someone handing out a stick…rather than hitting me with one.
The end result of this is that I just avoid those sorts of people. They are so far into their own desire to quantify my depression so that they feel better about it that they do not even see the bruises their words have raised.
I have survived it…and I think at last I am coming to some deep places of strength. Suicide rarely crosses my mind these days, after living inside my bone marrow half a century…this is a literal truth: one of my earliest remembered thoughts is that I should not ever have been born, and the fact I was even here was a huge disorder in the universe…and that all would be better if I just had never been…I was about 3 and a half when I thought that.
I used to walk around the house crying and wailing at that age and when asked what was the matter, I just said “It’s the end of the world”…and that story told hundreds of time as pertaining to how overly dramatic I was and overly sensitive and so we need to tease her more and toughen her up (except it was “him” in those days…)
It is beyond my abilities to communicate to you what it is like…but I will be damnified if I would ever even be capable of saying what the graphic purports to be a common communication…let alone undignify myself that much to say something like that…I would be far more likely to say something like in my poetry. But that’s just me. I speak only for me…depression has its own unique horrors for every one of its slaves…and if you are in its grip and still here you deserve something far more than platitudes purporting to be sticks…and by the way? Why sticks? Why not a gun, a knife, a nuclear bomb?
Because to me, as a sufferer of depression, that graphic is actually a mere placeholder for something like that Carl’s Jr advertisement that says “Don’t bother me…I’m eating”.
Centuries ago, a man named Job suffered horribly. He had some friends who came to him…they started off so well. They sat with him over 3 weeks in the ashes without saying a word. But then they went to giving out sticks and the phrase “Job’s comforters” was born.
“So Charissa, what should we do, then?” Well, first of all, whenever you feel a “should”, you should just leave me alone…I am not your mission field. I made it this far without your help, and if you come in the power of should your corn will be mealy anyway.
But if you wanna know “what can I do?” Well…looks straight into the eyes that show compassion and kindness and also some black humor…those are great. Hugs without words are fabulous. A tear in the eye that you let me see. A card. A timely visit or phone call checking in on friendship…a willingness to sit in the blackness together.
And then just follow your heart.
But really…shortcut graphics designed to communicate a priori what is okay and what is not is a bit like dressing in certain fashions to let everyone know how you roll so they don’t bother you while you eat. Take that spark which makes you attracted to the graphic, and refine it, identify it, and feed it with the fuel of true friendship.
As I conclude, I want to emphasize this: I am not judging anyone here! I am showing the insides of me…how I react when I see this graphic and what I think about it in light of my own life. I take all insistences of good faith as exactly what they are. Oh…and if anyone can give me provenance for the poster and therapist, I would happily correct that part of things, my feelings and reactions about it notwithstanding.
Do justice. Love mercy. Walk humbly.
Constance…here is why I chose my name. I wanna be this amazing…I wanna be this full of Grace and mercy.
Reader: these people lost their family members to murder and offer grace…and yet you still shun me because of your own perceived “loss” of a “perfectly good man” and your words consigning me to someplace “across a river which you won’t be crossing”…and your right to my face statements that I am demonized and in danger to my mortal soul…
…you have not even shed blood, been affected in any way personally…how bout a lil grace?
Don’t worry, I won’t soil you…hey if Jesus could take on human flesh and walk amongst us…going so far as to live inside you, and not become defiled, well I am pretty sure that you can interact with people you have shunned without ruining your Sunday Souls and risking getting dirtified.
How about we all walk in these magnificent footsteps, one to another, offering grace upon grace…seems like a good idea to me.
It’s not a game, my dear,
to see who keeps their cards more near
and shunts examination clear
behind them and well, to the rear.
You win, okay? I freely share
I put my bleeding heart out there,
and if I’m foolish, I don’t care
cus holding back is just no where.
Please share your heart, it feeds my soul
and when you open up, I’m whole
cus your friendship is just like coal
becoming diamonds in the toll.
You all already saw this article, right? Cus we as a society have decided that transwomen should be protected from violent murderous sanction…oh wait, we didn’t do that?
It could so easily be me…so quickly become me.
…this would transform the world.
It is the hardest thing for me…ever…to not hear from loved ones, and then get a dashed off note with the word “sorry” (not even “I am sorry”), and a line of sandwich filler, and a conclusion of “love you” (writing “I love you” takes too long).
Saving time and all…for what? Where is all that time saved? In a bank somewhere drawing interest?
No…it is spent…everyday.
Every. Last. Red. Cent. Second.
Ticks and tricks…tickles and trickles thru your will and then your heart…
…and finally your fingers to lay there at your feet as the record of what you did and what you did not do.
Charissa is regularly labeled wordy…of generating too much content…of putting too much out there to be dealt with or responded to…
but I guess that’s just how I roll…cus time. Fading. Flowing…flying away and done too soon. And I want to give everything I have to give…especially my time.
Do Justice. Love Mercy. Walk Humbly
As time passes it becomes increasingly clear to me that you are incredibly shocked and perhaps even traumatized by recent events. What started as a journey rooted in solidarity and a narrative of history held in common, stitched together by memories of holidays, traditions, and countless days in the sun has been blown apart by a story describing a life experience so different and distinct as to seem like the most crazed and addled of fictions.
And trying to put the spotlight of truth on “what really happened” is as fruitful as running on the beach to try and catch a seagull…memory and our past flies up and away when we run hard at it.
Certainly there is a plethora of artifacts that buttress my own experience…but here is the rub for me:
So much of those days is fuzzy to me, blurred by time and by the assumption that we were pretty fortunate to have one another…but most of all so much of it was swallowed whole and robbed from me by a Leviathan called Dysphoria. In the bone-frying terror of trying to survive the assaults of despair, a lot of my memory is reduced to memories of just hanging on.
As you all have been processing things, you have gone silent, gone angry, but mostly, just…gone. Nothing. And what reports do trickle back have been shocking in their vehement accusations and recollections, have been utterly astonishing in the gaping holes where context tells a radically differing tale…and completely and totally devastating to read and encounter.
It has been like a pogrom on my history…and what is worst of all is that whatever or however it happened, you have come to this time and this place where you have these driving needs to tell your story and write your history thus.
I want you to be and do and say whatever it is that will bring you expiation and freedom.
I want for you liberty and fruitfulness.
I want for you life and wholeness.
I want for you what I have always wanted for you and sought to provide you.
And I love you…regardless of what you might think or not think, say or not say, remember or forget.
I will never not love you.
Perhaps someday you might be handling the artifacts that my fingertips and heart tendrils trace daily, and you might find the tracks of my tears and the perfume of my love…in letters, in cards and emails…in memories other than the ones who swell and swarm our landscape like Red Tides…
…and if that ever happens, please do not waste one moment of your lives in regret or remorse…while it is evident to me that it is highly unlikely that this will ever happen, there is a chance that you might feel as if you have in some fashion or way done wrong in the process of this becoming of ours, and if this is ever the case I say to you
I love you
I forgive you
I have no record of wrong
I believe everyday in who I know you are
I want the best for you as you are able to discover it and access it
It is my honor to have had a part in your coming to be and it is my doom to be accountable for the innumerable ways that I failed you and caused you pain and horror.
I hope everyday that you are finding the sort of strength in becoming that I am experiencing.
Should you ever glance my direction, I am here at the end of the lane of home, everyday standing on tippietoes and my eyes combing the horizon and my heart listening to the wind and my nose sniffing the air for your presence…
…hoping to see you, praying for your safety and shalom…and never ever failing to hold you in my heart precious.
I also want you to know this: whatsoever you need to write, need to shout, need to throw, need to yell, need to think or tell or believe…whatever you need to do or be in order to be whole, it is okay with me.
I refuse to ever be “a betrayed one”
I refuse to ever be “a wronged one”
I refuse to ever be “offended”
I choose you and your wholeness.
I choose you and your horror that you lay at my feet and at my accountability. Let it be on me, to make things lighter and easier and more fruitful for you it is my glad and sacred honor.
If the narrative is now that I was the worst abuser, a victimizer, a (fill in the blank)…whatever it is…as long as it is an assignation of responsibility that enables you to be delivered and put in a place where you can choose life and choose wholeness and becoming, then it is a sentence that I want to have over me that I shall do my absolute best to carry in the way that creates the freedom and deliverance and cleansing within that brings you the very best that can be brought.
May it be my meals for the rest of my days if in eating it there is even a modicum of relief and wholeness for you.
Everyday without you is like Kafka’s world with no exit…unless in the absence I have the assurances it is resulting in your liberty and gladness and joy…
…and in that case it is the greatest of honors to be in this place.
I think I know who I was…and who I wasn’t too, finally. I think I acted in good faith, but who really knows? When one is dysphoria’s ball of yarn it gets a bit discombobulating to be batted around for 5o years.
I love you with all my heart, and I am honored by each of you in your strength of voice, your commitment to one another, your loyalty to truth and your heart for justice.
There are many who could have loved you more perfectly.
There are none who could have loved you more.
I loved you utterly, totally…I still do.
And I always will. Love you.
Say on…it’s okay, let it rip…do what you must and need and want…be…become.
Written in my blood and tears and sweat…and the tattoo ink of forever love,
Me…the one who was there and now is here…the one who engendered you…
There is an indigo bunting
outside my window singing
in the moonlight streaming by
a million miles an hour.
But it is not the window
on my mind tonight…
I keep returning to that door,
the one between you and me.
Fumes of light stream from my soul
and ribbons of sound rise from my heart.
I glow with purpose and echo with meaning
and love descends so soft upon my shoulders
and kisses my brow
with lips of apple red
that grace the inmost curve
of the coming sun arising.One:
Some people drown in the darkness of the night,
some people drown in the waters of the lake,
some people drown in the creamy golden moonlight…
I drown in you, your heart my anchor
pulling me down to the depths of you,
to the bottom of you but never finding it,
ecstasy of sinking
Luminescent and Limerent and I know
in my depths the outside is temporary.
Your fatal gift, the fatal gift of beauty
was revealed when the Redwing Blackbird
stopped by our house tonite,
and perched on her throne there
in the blue spruce tree grey in the night
at the center of the grey green wood all around.
our proceedings with her song,
and all was well.Two:
Beyond, on your side of that door
the moon tickles the lake
with her golden liquid fingertips
languid in the soft night
and sounding of rivers of song
that soar between stars,
that pour between galaxies
*in arpeggio miles*
The moon is loyal always,
but only to herself.
She comes and goes…
She is always there,
and knowing us in
our light and dark moments,
She wavers with us as we wax
She knows what it means
to be on display and assaulted
by meteors in the night.
I buried her nose
(the nose of the moon)
in my hair,
(my hair, rampant and unpinned, on the loose,
set free from the usual noose of clippie or headband,
untamed and untameable but always laying back
and down for you, your palms, your fingertips
in those tresses thick and fine, golden-shine
and dusky red overlaying and singing
of my inner pulsing red wet passion)
she drinking in/thirsting for me here
and my perfumes in dim rose-tinged light,
and there we danced upon the air,
hanging in the space between there and here,
and I felt the tips of my breasts swell and tighten,
come to focus and awareness, the smoothness of my belly
and my thighs clenching on hers and meshing tight,
an intricate creation of vaporous mist and lightning
of rain and dust, of desire and aching, groaning must.
And we two, in our separate skins
but sharing those common vital organs of us,
face to face and flying in freedom
to discover each other’s universe
and thus enter in and live this love adventure
full of risk and promise.
The moon pries at the ripples and the lake stirs into waves
under her touch and inhales swift in desire and exhales
in winds of want, and her lakey answering song of delight
rises from those moundy wet humps of her body
against the rocks, and onto sandy beaches
It’s the song of lovers lost and longing.
It’s the song heard only by hearts that listen.
It’s the music of the stars writ in the moment
in dancing waters by calligraphic moonlight rays
extending from forever and into never ending
and never ceasing until those waters answer
with sweet frothy songs and foamy longing harmonies
sweet and sibilant whispers against the dry and thirsty sands…
and then at last, in gurgly gasps,
her answer of longing for the moon
rising and falling and caught
by the moon’s grip,
mesmerized by her gravity.
The wind’s soft palms caress my face tonight,
her tender tendrils pluck my tresses,
kiss my cheeks rosy and peachy-soft and me here,
beside the stirring lake and beneath
the ministrations of the moon
inside the heart of the naked night
and lost in starry reaches over galaxy beaches
strewn over the vast expanse of nothing.
*and yet it is
never really nothing,
is it? nothing
doesn’t really exist…
And all else
is not that
and thus is
and nothing is
and this is
why this song,
why this light
and the water
and the sound…
why the you
and the me
is a something,
an us, and
not a nothing,
I stir and shift, as the waters in the bathtub
lose heat and their ardor is dampened
in the thirsty soft night air sneaking in
thru the cracked window, brushing against
the curtains you made me in
the 7th winter of our vast contents.
I run my hands over my hills (yours)
and they dive into valleys (yours)
like fog banks rolling in for the week,
beneath the surface of my bath (this lake)
and you so far away
I am still yours and yours alone love…
well, and the moon and the lake
and the stars in the night…
I am theirs too, but as they lead to you,
what’s that really matter?
My fingers dance lightly into my lake, across my folds,
they pry like moonlight into my depths,
probe like starlight into my galaxy cores that stand,
eternity’s target for time’s arrows of light
shot from the bows of longing…
longing for you, always
you across the sands of time
vast like beaches,
small ‘neath reaches
of stars and space
and become as nothing
when I summon to my mind
your face…your face…
your curve and swell
and moans escape my lips,
and such tales those moans do tell
but they speak only in tongues
not of men but angels
and sound bells sweetly
between the lips of time
and there again,
I gush like rivers
I am yours,
I am thine…
and all the symphony
of us escapes my lips
in sighs and whispers
of your sacred name
and in the air above
my parted lips
and just outside
my lowered fluttering lids.
Our song hangs there
over my yearning face
as sung by me
in solo sotto voce
so softly in
the slick and velvet night
and tender touch
of golden glad moonlight.
It swims above
my longing heart so red
across the distance
indigo that stretches
until it finds you, there,
until it touches
you in just the same
way it just took me
and you enter into
our Holy Us,
our Glory Be…
But now the winds subside and waters have cooled
and night recedes, sucked back into the stars
from which it oozed in hungry sweet washes
and time looks on, time resumes, time takes back
its rightful place around me, in huffy shrugs and jerky yanks
of garments back in place…and jeans just so
and nothing is what remains of moments long unceasing
except the footprints of the moon across the surface of the lake
and brushes of their dance on sands
in footprints keeping time locked firmly in its place
and held in check between the stars, behind the shining moments
of the galaxies showing off, immune
*to time’s inoculations.*
But water graces my bare shoulders,
drops of starlight linger in my hair
and our song dances in my eyes and lives
in my heart and you
always, always always
are only here
and questions are at peace now,
and answers? They are known,
like long locked rooms in an old familiar house
where each creak and groan
is recognized in darkness
as the sighs of a familiar
The mind lacks understanding and I am standing,
under, under moon and stars in something, here.
I spin on my axis and show you my other face
for we all like the moon, we have 2 faces,
and we also like the moon keep our best side facing out…
but is that side the one most real, or even best?
And so I turn and hear the creaking of the turning on my axis
to face you with my other face, the dark side of my moon me
and the light has come to set me free and time is there
and is of no meaning, not anymore, not ever.
Wallace Stevens said
“sometimes the truth depends upon a walk around the lake.”
but I know different, I know the sojourn that I take
to walk on waters is to know the place
where truth is held, in love’s own heart of grace.
So let’s not hurry home tonight, let’s linger, here,
in hammocks under diamond slick black sky.
The stars they are on fire tonight so high
above us, I think someone could go check,
see how they shine, how they shine, OH.
And the miles are present too, they are
like an overly unctuous waiter eager for a tip,
hovering between us, connecting your there with my here
and taking the lone from the a,
we are connected in what is called
The birth of stars
begins with death,
begins with dark
collapse in depths,
and destructions mark
a beginning, the birth
of a star from collapse
and crumble.They came with
and struck light from
space and didn’t even
give the dignity of
a blazing trail of glory
as this star augers in
to gravity.I collapsed in
on myself tonight,
crumbled from nebula
to white dwarf.
And while their
words whirled round
my head in stardust clouds,
if there would be
the birth of a star…