Full Circle

Spinning like leaves
loose falling and slow
and scurrying brownly
to nowhere…no when…
fast flakes flying, fleeing
the huffy long Storm
of The Great Tree of Life
abandoned indifferent
for the dim tree of EGO
dried out, lacking relevance
and fading, and fading
disconnected and done
just a leaf…just a me
and lost in the pile

And the stormings of Autumn
turn cold here, outside,
clammy and indifferent
to everything else
but the deep dark long job
of laying down still
in the cold cooling earth
and The Long Sighing slower
and slower.

I have lost my True North
and grown cold and weary
in my mission to Grace:

to be Grace remaining
in roots, to drink Grace
clean raining so free
to walk on Grace quick
in the wind, to swim deep
in Grace beneath the vision
to fall like Grace landing
like swans white and dolorous
to crash…to settle, to touch
like Grace.

The fallen brown flakes
they smolder and smoke
as skies above tense
and bunch and blow white
and acrid smells clench
all around me and promises
piles disappeared…
into ashes…and yet…

I can’t find a flame
and can’t feel the fire
on my skin, in my bones
and real tears on my cheeks

and I find
I have come
Full Circle

Used Pig: Of Toads and Truffles (dedicated to Tina) | Charissa’s Grace Notes

People…CONSTANCE!!! (“Constance” is a moniker for “Constant Reader”, btw…)

So what is UP??  Why is this gem getting so little attention?  Is it because I use Pig as a metaphor for Someone?  Is this a bridge too far??  HAHAHAHAHA!!!  If that is true, it misses the heart of both the pig and the Someone.

Give it a go…I rather love this poem, with its little oinky rhythm and pace…
It is clouds…just clouds, hanging nowhere,
in nothing, like smoke curling quick
in Blue extending here and there
(and Here to There too…yeah)…

Source: Used Pig: Of Toads and Truffles (dedicated to Tina) | Charissa’s Grace Notes

Our Little Hut | Charissa’s Grace Notes

I think this is among the handful of poems that I really feel good about, from the point of view of technical craft…I think I really hit the sweet spot and was risen above a mere hack or journeyman kind of poetess…

I wrote this, pretty much the first true poem I wrote after a seminal crushing happened to me and I was worried that my creative fonts had been polluted forever…thank God this worry was unfounded, as this beautiful little creature shows.

“…You were a wordless humming song
and tidal in my veins you moved
in rhythm, rhyme, in time to that
strumming music tidal
joyous humming in the dancing of the waves
and sand and wind and sky.
We walked each day steady
across those shores ever reaching
to the sea and the sea ever running
back to sands and sunset ever blessing
everyday each moment with its many colored kiss
in hues of pinks and purples, oranges, yellows, hues of bliss
in reds and blues, and greys… you…
always grey lining blue of mine with you,
in silver shot straight thru
with grey shot thru my blue.
We knew each sunset,
whiled away another day
closer to that sunset last
and that final mystic gateway
at the end thru which we enter
Lone and sundered, hoping that we yet may
walk together on a new shore
where there are no sunsets because
there is only sunrise
sunrise
sunrise
yet again
and yet again…”

 

Source: Our Little Hut | Charissa’s Grace Notes

On Seas So Grey | Charissa’s Grace Notes

A couple of years ago…and utterly slipped from my mind, but oh how I remember it now…what a beautiful word, Re-member…
What’s it like, on the grey seas
in the silver wind, with sails
so green and full and billowing?

Skimming swift and dangerous, light
on the waters while the crew scrambles
‘neath that Captain loud and bellowing?

Stinging spray by facefuls founting
up from waves slosh-frothing, faithful
and fateful leading cross the edge

to horizons promising much more
of the same and something different,
something different, too.

Source: On Seas So Grey | Charissa’s Grace Notes

Used Pig: Of Toads and Truffles (dedicated to Tina)

It is clouds…just clouds, hanging nowhere,
in nothing, like smoke curling quick
in Blue extending here and there
(and Here to There too…yeah)

and then pulling, parting, LO!  Beyond the blue It Comes, it comes,
The Pig steps forth majestic, shaggy, Wild with Wonder,
Pig of Power Looming larger than the sky from which it bursts
in sounding sniffing grunting thunder hooves a rumble tumble tango
striking sparks in their first touch so terrible and taut with cracking
sound of sizzle snap and clacking tap-dance Prince Pig prances slapping
touching earth, made into holy place, and touching down in France
and also somehow, every other place as well…
‘Tis red and ruddy, bristles stiff like forests, thick like brambles tangled
heaving bunching with each lurching hidden graceful step…

Mille Chiens!!!

What is this Thing, this Scion stepped down from Beyond and then stepped in,
this Archetype, this Power pulsing reddish brown totemic wonder
of an Uncreated Creature Come to sniffle, root the earth
and dig the children of the clay out of their seedbeds into day
where they will grow in deep delight of our Delight and Love and Grace

pig…Pig?

deliberate it shrinks, so slow and funny, so intentional,
soon become short, ordinary, just a snuffle huffle snorting
porcine pot of piggy, trotting almost dainty, dancing
deep connected to the wonder hidden in this ancient dirt
so new and old and full of life just waiting to be sniffed out, found
discovered there deep in the wombs and be drawn out from earthy tombs…

look quick and see it…hiding there…beneath that “used pig” thin veneer
and human truffles laugh and jeer yet if you listen you can hear
the Pig inside the pig just laughing as it shuffles, snorts and sniffles
each and every human soul (human truffles if you really wanna dig deep into Truth)
the Pig roots rough and ragged thru the forest, sniffing, grunting, rooting
sloughing with its trowel snout deep thru the red red red rich dirt
running deep down to the core and in the middle of the deepest
scents of mother earth the scents of birth, the scents of womb,
oh, NOT a trifle, scent of truffle waiting to be sent from tomb and tussle…Image result for sheep grazing in a vineyard
the sheep are walking gracelessly, unaware and grazing in among the vines
and looking down their noses at the rumbly Pig
deep in the fields and forests pregnant…

sheep so sleepy, unaware that buried there are toads both dead and yet alive
and full of death and parasite that’s also camouflaged, disguised
to look like truffles…sheep cannot discern, distinguish which is which
and what is dead, relationship of death and just a rancid bond…
and what is still just waiting, still, to be uncovered in its shell and be delivered here…no trifle!

But the Pig, it knows the secret of what really happened in the forest…
that smells like roadkill lacking graces to just let go and return, that tastes
like tin foil soaked in vinegar, metal, and electric acid anti-truth
the Pig, it knows those puffy toads so poisonous…but leaves them buried
deep entombed where they belong…to root out truth found deep in dirt
so red, so rich and truffly and toothsome to the soul…

Toads or truffles, that is what
The Pig came down to give to us, a choice…our choice…
but we must be rooted out and snuffled deep
and ripped into our very bones and breathe so deep
the earthy scents of just becoming

Just…Becoming…

as blood like liquid dirt that pulses,
courses thru our veins like rivers,
rivers in our noses

just like truffles…
rooted out…
by that disguised
and worn out
old Used Pig

Going Out Weeping, Returning Rejoicing

Yesterday…it felt like a dream.  I was thinking of that beautiful Psalm

“When the Lord brought back the captive ones of Zion, we were like those who dream! Then our mouths were filled with laughter and our tongue with singing! Then they said among the nations that the Lord has done GREAT things for them.

“The Lord has done great things for me…

“She who sows in tears shall reap in joy. She who continually goes forth weeping, bearing seed for sowing, shall doubtless come again with rejoicing bringing her sheaves with her.”

It was like a dream to me…or rather, it was like waking up.
I think that is what death will be like…we shall fall asleep, and when we wake, we are shocked and stunned at the THICKNESS OF REALITY that we are swimming in!! What we shall see…what we shall hear…what we shall taste…

…talk about #SOULSTROLLING !!!!!! Kayce Stevens Hughlett !!!

But yesterday…the children are seeing me, and it is spreading like a case of holy measles or chicken pox lol!! My lil shadow cadre is growing…and I have spotted some little torn ones and sent them the message without words that they can talk to me with words or with eyes…and that is a good and sacred Mama thing of which I think I will not speak…but it is VERY good.
Let’s see…what did I do? Well, I am working for a brilliant young teacher who frankly has a chance to really make a mark in teaching should she discover this as a life long and intense passion. The fact of her name is also a promise to me…of this I maybe can write about later.

This teacher is giving me permission to help, truly help and I lack the words to say how this feels, after being in a place where it seemed that other agendas dominated the subtext.

At recess, I played soccer, I told stories…oh by the way, I am WAAAAYYY OLDER than a thousand years old!! I am so old that I know the stories of every single tree around our playground, and I know how to hear the language of all the little grasses and bushes that the trees protect…but I am NOT a MILLION years old because then I would be a dinosaur!!! (Yes, I did say all that, and I DID turn into a dinosaur, but very briefly…I quickly was me again laughing and joying!)…

I taught them how to walk on this little divider/container that looked like a balance beam, and soon I had 20 plus kids walking this little balance beam that probably was a good 200 feet or even MORE, all around the play structures…and OH MY GOD!!! It was soooo fun…
They were using gross motor skills, FINE motor skills, and in their minds???

Sometimes we were on a high wire at the circus…sometimes we were suspended over a pit of ALLIGATORS…sometimes we were suspended over a pit of PUPPIES wanting to lick our faces…sometimes there were people watching ready to give us medals if we stayed on…it was truly fun. Truly. FUN!
Did you have any fun yesterday? Like…FUN? Did you play yesterday?

Human beings need to play…every single day.

Staff is genuinely warm, welcoming…all things are going well.

It is only two days in…and these two days feel like waking from a dream…waking from the captivity of purification.

It’s always worth it, friends…the purification…so much so that you can even seek it out, if you are a Fool like me LOL! You can intention for purity…do something that is a ritual for you…it really doesn’t matter what it is, because it is the intentionality of your being which attracts Mama’s Eye and Heart…

I used to burn incense…but as my asthma got worse, I once asked Mama if I had to do that and She suggested that it was the incense of my Song She loved the most…and BOOM!!

Now I just burn me…

It is important for you to know that as I write these things, I sit in stunned wonder and actually laugh out loud at the ABSURDITY of it all!!

I GET TO PLAY…and I GET TO LOVE…and I GET TO TEACH…and I GET TO BE…

and in the moments, yunno the ones…when a little is flummoxed or triggered, or their lil brains have flipped and they cannot process the rationality of things…and you just sit there and say “omg Mama wtf am I gunna do???”

And She drops something down like a feather…or it PLOPS up from the soul-geyser and splats into your mind…or you sniff the inner breezes and smell Her near…or you notice some lil cue…

IT IS HER!! ANYONE CAN DO THIS!!!

Mama says this morning “Whosoever will, let her come to Me and come quickly, for it is your DESIRE that determines your DESTINY! Desire will determine which path your foot finds, and once you find that path it will pull you along, push you along, draw you in and up and IN AND UP…until…”

…until you laugh like Charissa.

I am like one who dreams.

Oh, one last word…yunno those verses I quoted above? Those are saying something very important.

She who goes forth weeping, sowing in tears, sowing her seed? This speaks of a very important principle in farming and also spiritually…

See, Mama and Jesus and Father (insert your own name(s) for Divine God here) give us food yes…They give us bread. BUT THEY WANT MATURE WHOLE FRIENDS TO WALK WITH!! Because Their Love and Joy is Great, and They LOVE to share that. Each person who comes merely multiplies EXPONENTIALLY the available Love and Joy to be shared…so yes, They feed us…but more importantly They TEACH us and DEVELOP us…just like I am teaching Their jewels.

And so here is the key: Besides the bread, They give us SEED too!! We generally finish the bread…quickly. And when our tummies rumble like Pooh Bear, we nibble a kernel of grain…and WTF that is YUK!! Tasteless, toothy-breaky…what do we do with THAT!!

And we toss it away and sit, feeling forlorn and lost and abandoned and have ourselves a pity party and invite our friends over and have P when we should be having T (make the joke in your mind)…

But after awhile we notice that those seeds we tossed away are growing!!! And Mama instructs us in the lessons of seeds…

Jump FORWARD…and NOW look at she who walks, weeping…and yet sowing seed!! She has learned that she cannot discard the seed corn!! She has to keep it, and she has to walk, weeping to water what she is sowing.

Did you know you have to water your dreams with the tears of your broken heart? Water what seeds you have with tears, copious and wept unafraid and unashamed…you can FLY at Mama with tears, of rage, of fear, of sorrow, of grief, of pity-party-ing, of whatever…

Just.
Weep.
Them.
As.
You.
Sow.
Your.
Seed…

and behold…you shall DOUBTLESS come again, REJOICING, and bringing in your sheaves behind you.

Your sheaves are NOT stalks or wheat or ears of corn…your sheaves are your OWN littles (mine are these jewels of Mama)…yours are…well…

What ARE your sheaves? Only one way to find out: go forth with your tears into those barren fields!! Your tears shall wash away the salting of the enemy and purify the dirt…EARTH…and behold, your seed will fall from your broken hands which feel as if they shall never again hold joy in them…

but I promise that you will, as you weeping walk and sow…and sow…and sow…and just when your bag is empty you shall be back where you began…but at a DIFFERENT PLACE ON THE SPIRAL!! (you DO realize that history does NOT repeat, but rather it spirals?? And in your personal history, you revisit places over and over and over…except that you are “higher” or perhaps “lower” or perhaps “deeper” or perhaps “on dry land” or perhaps at last “swimming or flying” or…you get the drift)…

If your hands are full…start tossing seed…it is your promise of future harvest but MUST be sown in order to yield to you the fullness of your dreams…and weep…weep…weep…

And if your hands are empty…then dry your eyes, square your shoulders and look again…and again…and again…peer into the darkness intently…

and when you get discouraged, think of Silly Charissa…and be encouraged, for I tell you truly: If They will do it for ME???? I freaking GUARANTEE to you that They will INDEED do it for YOU, because I am truly the least…the very least of the baubles in Their Treasure House.

Love to you all this morning…LOVE to you in thick creamy schmears!!!!

Kayce Hughlett – live it to give it_blog – On grief, owls, & pilgrim’s pockets

It was a year and 9 months ago, give or take, that I first encountered Kayce Hughlett…she and a friend, Betsey Beckman were to lead a spiritual retreat that I just knew I was supposed to go to.  The tale of how that all worked out is a wonderful one to be told some other time.

What I am trying to say is that as a result of encountering Kayce, I gained a friend, a sister, and yes, a mentor of sorts…she is deep waters without being brackish or strangely tinged with divers minerals…She has written a novel that I absolutely adored and endorse…you can read a review at the link, and of course find it on Kayce’s website and Amazon.  It definitely had me mindful of a college text called Three Faces of Being which was an existential psychology text that influenced me greatly.

Anyway, Kayce wrote this particular piece a year ago…and she used language that I found myself using yesterday morning on a post I wrote for Facebook…a post that I was writing before I had read or even knew about this post of Kayce’s…it was when I was finishing about the last third of my post that I saw she had posted this on my wall…and I kept typing, eager to see what Kayce had sent me.

After I posted, I clicked thru and started reading, and I was delighted at the synchronicity of Mama’s mind, and the flow of things that spiraled from a year ago ahead…and then back to three years ago…

I highly recommend Kayce’s writings…please consider being a regular at her website.

❤ you always, Soul Sister!!

Source: Kayce Hughlett – live it to give it_blog – On grief, owls, & pilgrim’s pockets

The Convenience of Giving Up | Charissa’s Grace Notes

It was my knees that began to ache
from bending over, my hands that
occasionally encountered some
stinging or biting insect of one
kind or another, my muscles
that would cramp my
fingers and hands
from relentless
weeding and
digging…

Source: The Convenience of Giving Up | Charissa’s Grace Notes

Jacob’s Half-Sister | Charissa’s Grace Notes

This poem is written in recognition of all that culminated in the legal name change I obtained three years ago today.  I am very happy with this poem, rich in allusions and metaphorical double-backs…

It will reward the diligent who read it and then meditate on it.  Resonances emerge like poetic harmonics and sing of many strange and holy waters.


“…the stone under my head grows soft
and i think about my long ago
half-brother, and his ladder.
i search the brooding night sky
for mine, my eyes
pleading like puppies
hungry for milk

but my ladder is my heart.
i know that, finally,
and the skies will open
only as my heart pries open
to spit the pearls formed
within this shell-shocked soul

the stone under my head becomes flesh
and i think about how jacob named
that stone, that ebenezer memory
of open skies and accessible heavens…
bethel…and it echoes in the dark,
rings midst the stars and
chimes in cloudy choruses.

that stone,
that living stone had legs
to wander, God’s house sojourning
from place to place and time to time
ever wandering…
the stone of Scone
stone of destiny
stone of coronation
old, red, sandstone

the stone under my head becomes red
and throbs and thrums and thrills
my soul open and searching the skies,
and i sense it will speak
as it spoke so long ago
and whisper my name,
my new name from heaven.
but it pushes me to listen elsewhere,
my answers not from
rock and sand and ruin
but from the Cornerstone Rock
and its bloody open hand
red and throbbing and thrumming…”

Source: Jacob’s Half-Sister | Charissa’s Grace Notes

Mama You Told Me | Charissa’s Grace Notes

This poem is the sister poem to another one I wrote on the exact same day, several minutes earlier.

It was three years ago, and it was the day of my court hearing which would change my name legally…it was a huge day of excitement and anxiety…and it led to my professional execution less than 2 weeks later.

Ohh, but even in the loss of so much, it is worth it…for in it were the seeds of becoming.

I hope you enjoy one of my own personal faves

…and me…spit up and emptied
and waiting for You
to fill the silent spaces
that ate grace and jeered
while feasting on my food.
me emptied, waiting …
and my heart,
ego-stained and washed clean,
captured
by Your face,
Your gift,
Your grace…

waiting…for that one grain of sand
to start an avalanche within me
of hope, nay!
of Hope…

Source: Mama You Told Me | Charissa’s Grace Notes

Soul As Big As Autumn | Charissa’s Grace Notes

Another older poem…based on an overheard conversation, and then what I “saw” as I looked up…

I saw her, hair caught,
transfixed on dancing
wild breezes that lifted,
poofed, primped and pinched
braids and bangs and barettes and her eyes
lit with that autumn afternoon fading fire
gleaming from behind the clouds
carrying water for Miss Autumn in Her sudden rush and approach.

Source: Soul As Big As Autumn | Charissa’s Grace Notes

Of Rain On Rooftops | Charissa’s Grace Notes

This lil poem is a year old…

**************

and it is in night…
tumblr_n73dnpuPxz1rbl5n4o1_1280
like a babe in fresh blankets
snuggled and seeing,
quiet and jumping

in jammies with footies
singing of safety,
hot chocolate and nibbles,
tumblr_o47z33a0aK1uvues3o1_1280
then raindrops on rooftops
tingtingtingthrumthrumthrum
silver tin foil lightning…

(entire poem at Source: Of Rain On Rooftops | Charissa’s Grace Notes)

Like Mama | Charissa’s Grace Notes

This was written the same day as “For JD” which I just told of my horrified discovery regarding how it was defiled and twisted.

Catch the irony that on the same day that I wrote that poem, I also wrote this one, which describes the very deepest desire of my heart.

and i must find the courage
to smear me on the world
like oranges on the morning
smeared on the fingertips
that pry with nails sharp

 

i must be resolved
to be spread thick and creamy
on hearts so dry and crumbly
and tasteless in their leaven
like butter sweet and salty

Source: Like Mama | Charissa’s Grace Notes

For JD | Charissa’s Grace Notes

I wrote this for a friend who occupies a very distinct and unique place in my life and history.  She is a woman that I have never met, exchange conversation with “occasionally”, or at least compared to other friends…she is of similar spiritual ilk and call, and is cut from the same cloth as me.  My beloved one and only knows about her, knows her…and we have never been anything other than what we are:  “Litter-mates”.

If you have ever had a dog who had puppies, then you know what litter-mates are…pups born at the same time from the same conception…and they are together until around 8 weeks when they all blast off to their families where they live…litter-mates are more than close…they are simply litter-mates…siblings.

My friend is like that to me, and when I first encountered her, I flashed on so many more things than I can write about, but HAVE written about here, and here, and a few other “here“s too…

This poem was written in that blissful innocence and joy that two people have when they meet and just know they are fast friends and sisters forever…it is my heart, flowing and pouring forth such beauty that it is capable of retaining from the Beauty That Comes With Poetry…it was in the moment and will always be my pure commitment to her, my sister.

And then I discovered to my horror and defilement that it has been used to accuse…that JD and I are accused of being “lesbian lovers”!!  Remember, we have never met…and that I myself am accused of being a “predator” who was “grooming” my incredible friend (whom I have never met, and whom my one and only till death we do part beloved knows about and rejoices in)…that I was grooming her for…this part I still do not really comprehend.

It is two years later…and my poem is now covered in shit and filth…from a literal whore-monger and thief and also from a religious dementor who is so deranged she makes the Pharisees look like the blessed meek.  One of them is sex addicted…and both of them are self-addicted…and I find out that they violate this poem, they violate JD, and they violate me…and I feel so sick and nauseous at this…this absolute shit.

Maybe it is the picture that did it in their minds…which is stupid because each woman has on her swimming suit, and even if they did not it would STILL not necessarily say anything!!  The picture represents the utter joy and abandon that comes when one is cleansed of all extraneous distraction and burden.  The water is the Divine Flow…the exhilaration is freedom.

Asshole Pervert:  I will never ever talk to you or have any contact with you ever.
Religious Dementor:  YOU I will give a chance if you ever find the One that you doll up in your shitty clothes and filthy rags imported in from the Law so you can feel like you are adding your work to the work of the One who said “It is FULL” which is usually translated “It is finished” and it means “It is totally summed up and completed”.

Sadly, for me?  This poem will ever be shit-stained by a monster and poisoned by a daughter of the slithering viper of poison tooth…but I know Mama will cleanse it, and those stains will at last be the colors which make JD and my friendship even more close, and even more surrendered to the Holy…to the good.

JD…Jennifer…I love you with my whole and true and innocent heart, dear Litter-Mate and fellow prophetess.
i clothe myself in wonder
for you, i wrap myself in night
i am your pirate plunder
you can have without a fight

the milky way my shining sash
the moon my pendant true
and cricket song my lingerie
i give myself to you

you there, so strong, so brilliant
straightforward as blazing suns
your ready laugh, your brewing storms
the way your rivers run

from mountains high, jagged austere
you flow into the sea
for you i wait, indigo here
for you to give you me

we…night and day bonded and true
and joy our wonder-fates
you wrapping me, me inside you
Mama’s happy litter-mates

Source: For JD | Charissa’s Grace Notes

Lil Mama’s Run | Charissa’s Grace Notes

I wrote this two years ago for a dear friend I have never met.  I call her “Lil Mama” cus she has helped be a Mama with skin on.

*******************

i don’t run so well these days,
what with clouds of unbecoming
filtered thru rejection
inhaled into my heart
asthma my constant partner

i suck air in like water
and splutter to get breath
a leaky bellows creaky
and riddled with these tears
that steal away my power

but i like you so much
i follow here, behind you
and see the place your feet
left rainbows in the rocks
and fuzzy from your socks

so i just trot along
me, gretel in this stone
but looking not for witches
but for your heart, my friend
and your smile leads me home

and just when i despair,
and my way seems so blocked
i find your evidences
that you want me to follow
and I can face tomorrow
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Source: Lil Mama’s Run | Charissa’s Grace Notes

The Keepers (For JD, my keeper)

The keepers are all that remain, the ones
with both feet anchored to Earth
and their hair being pulled by the stars
to the Milky Way and Beyond

They’ve learned how to swallow it all, it all,
the medicine of ghostly tragedy
they can hear the high keening stories
the stories of tender hearts’ piercings

The keepers, the ones that remain, remain
they keep the connections to meaning
they keep the transitions so sacred
and they bridge life and death with their bodies

they become that bridge, graceful, suspended, suspended
unseen and constructed from blood
and composed in the song of the blood and the sweat
and revealed in the sacred teardrops

and they stretch over oceans with skin, with their skin
they anoint with the oil so sacred
of trauma endure-ed and conquered
by outlasting its flailing last gasps

and they hold in the dark, in the still dark
like an armor that never needs donning
and that never need be taken off
they are Mama’s Heart in skin and bone

The keepers are all that remain, the ones,
The ones too stubborn to leave
the ones too persistent to wipe out
The keepers alive in Her flame

“Scars”, the Illustrated Version

Sometimes I am asked if I illustrate my poems…but please PLEASE note this:

All images are found online unless I specifically state otherwise that they are either pics taken by me or drawings done by me.

This particular illustration is from a major book I am working on for my friend.  It is unique and one of a kind.  It will be the only one, and were I to illustrate it all over again, the exact same poetry, it would look completely different.

I am really really happy with Scars though…I think I might never attempt it again, as it feels like it captured it. Oh…and for you who need a lil help mining for the diamonds, here is a lil “key” to the poem.

Like Sunlight, Like Fog | Charissa’s Grace Notes

I am so enjoying posting old work for a while…
certainly so many things rushed out of me in the trauma flow that
many nuggets got carried further downstream than where people stand to pan for the gold.
I’m often told I’m confident
(like the march of blazing sun
across the hills of night
awakening each day)

I’m told I look like rushing waves
that roll in from the sea
and pounce upon the sand
in joyful swelling sounds

This makes me laugh inside my heart
because I’m more like fog
that silent moves unsure
which way it wants to go

But still committed to the march
inexorable and slow
to be true to myself
in soft embrace sold out

to be completely there
and wrapped around all things
I cherish in the hug
of insubstantial presence

there, and yet untouched.

Source: Like Sunlight, Like Fog | Charissa’s Grace Notes

Singing In My Holy Heart | Charissa’s Grace Notes

Ahhhh…last year I wrote this to try and express how closely the ecstatic and the erotic dance in me as I connect to poetry and the words enter, flow and exit…

I’m asked sometimes if I write erotic poetry, and I allus laff and ask “Why?”

The question is like asking someone if they are eating McDonald’s french fries during the best feast of their life…

So anyway…this poem is about Poetry, about connection with the Divine, and yes, it can be about connection with the person you love to…connect with.

PS:  this selection is towards the end of the poem…there is a staircase that gets you there, but you have to decide whether you ascend these steps, or descend them…either one is wow!!
…I am buried living-forward
I’m resurrected dying-backward
I am stained forever always after
with that pungent glory,
with Her Glory running down
my chin and from my lips so wet
and thus I shiver deep within
all the way from my down-low throb
to the very roots of my
ecstatic shining hair…

Source: Singing In My Holy Heart | Charissa’s Grace Notes

The Center of All Things | Charissa’s Grace Notes

I am reposting a lot of old poetry…not because there is nothing new…but because these are some very nice lil poems that few eyes ever noticed…and they deserve a moment.

I sat down by the fire
in the middle of the roses
planted all around
and fragrant with buzzy bees
so busy in the dusk.

The air shimmered
as you approached
skimming across the grass
like a clipper ship
under full sail and
high on the sea.

And when you sat down,
beside me there in
the crackling fragrant
breezy busy air
it was like the entire
universe had come home
and I was at the center
of all things.

Source: The Center of All Things | Charissa’s Grace Notes

This Place of Living Bliss | Charissa’s Grace Notes


a foggy night in late summer
seems like such a strange thing,
seeping up from the ground
like bathwater draining in reverse

we go walking in this cool
clammy oddly warm chill
orange under streetlights…

Source: This Place of Living Bliss | Charissa’s Grace Notes

On This Shore I Break,We Break | Charissa’s Grace Notes

I wrote this for the first human other than my dearest darling to really see me, Charissa…she has never not seen me.  She has never seen him, even though she knows all about him, and I have told her everything about him that matters and also that she has asked…

I would tell her everything without reservation…but sometimes, she simply is bored by him, because he is an absent caterpillar and she loves the butterfly.

By the way…where do caterpillars go when the enter the chrysalis?

I love you Dani…you are my first friend and my dearest heart of friendship…special and distinct from the many friends and sisters I now have.  ❤

PS:  Pay attention to the line length…just a hint

Listen…
you can hear
my words in waves
breaking on your beach
and celebrating…

lament at long last left limp
in clammy depths
‘neath the surface of seas
of blessed forgetfulness
and chuckling…

midst the shells and sand swirling,
rejoicing surf returning resurrected,
remembered, sanctified by sorrows
faced and sorted…yielding
wholeness certain, sure…

on this shore I break,
we break,
on this shore gently
and joyfully too
we break…

on that shore
that someday shore
we will unbroken break
on that shore and in that circle
by and by…in that circle

by and by…

Source: On This Shore I Break,We Break | Charissa’s Grace Notes

Reflections | Charissa’s Grace Notes

SO loving this old one…”old”…HAH!  Just a few years, very early on in transition…and a word play via homophone leads the way in this one.


The scent of our home,
funky quaint and riddled
with books and bikes,
and the long laid scent of family.
The scent of the kitchen,
yesterday’s dinner
and the overlay of croissants
like fierce french washer women
scrubbing away all other scents.

…the scent of our clothes,
and our laundry soap…
the scent of the air cooler,
that of the soft night air
waltzing in,
slow and sleepy
from her night out
amongst the stars,
and carried in drowsy
on cricket wings…

…the scent of popcorn
shared on the couch,
of our wine wafting
from bottles possessed
by only the last 12 drops,
our lil garden outside,
and the auto sprinkler
which has come on to water
in the dark and the cool…

the scent of your currents,
your deep distant observing soul
that hangs back and watches,
even in the midst…

i do go on…

from here…from now…
in the sweltering heat,
where you and I lay,
you sleeping,
me watching you sleeping,
soft face limpid and languid…here…
listening to tides of eternity
race round and round
inside our veins, our universe…

i do go on…

Source: Reflections | Charissa’s Grace Notes

Maybe So, Maybe Not

I think prophetesses are cray cray,
sometimes cackling, always peering
deeply into foggy noggins
past the eggy soggy boggins
at the slick silver toboggans
shimmering in dancing air
to run the ride down truth’s face fair

and standing in the circle broken
hearing profound wholeness calling
symphonies of glory sounding
Mama all around in Wonder
spilling, splashing peeling thunder!

All the while the people slumber
neath the broken blankets lumber
over shards and nails and thorns
while Wonder blows her Golden Horns
and wholeness plays that glory

oh that glory

Yeah, we cray cray,
looking at this shattered world
blemishes and ugly cuts
just like punches to the gut
so why do we think differently
and call out so instictively
that this is not the “Supposed to Be?”

Why do we think we were fashioned
made for wholeness, transformation
by a beauty big enough to
embrace life as well as death
that gurgles in the swamps of dazed
and drunken creature comforts crazed?

It’s seen, a fleeting flashing glimpse
in roaring subways rumbling
a quiet act of kindness given
a cup of water cool and sweet
to quell the fires and cool the heat
of hurt and hate and slaughtered meat

just dim glimpses, visions dark, muddled
when we see the face of God
and recognize what we have yet
to see, and know we always knew it…

Cray cray?

Maybe so
maybe not

There, Brown And Small

I am not
the only one
here, brown and small
wearing a mask

so fearsome, fell
created from
conflicted heart
streaked red and blue

colliding with
my resting soul
green on those hills
those tumbled hills

there, brown and small

Sleeping Skin to Skin | Charissa’s Grace Notes

Three years old and holding up VERY well!!

Somewhere in the dark,
in the warmth of black-red
before we woke up swimming,
surfing sultry heartbeats and
waves of new bones growing
green and rooty-fibrous,
we navigated bold our
seas secure and buoyant,
our universe and listened…

Source: Sleeping Skin to Skin | Charissa’s Grace Notes

An Eclipse Of Grace

we are down to it now
here in the land where dragons
have forgotten their names
and deny their children
who loved them

Puff and Jackie are no more
it is now all sturm und drang.

A monster has arisen
and graves quiver and tremble
as fingers long thought dead
scritch scritch scritch
on those coffins so
recently buried

and show that they live
and gibber in glee
with prospects of release

scritch scritch scritch

but the moon has not forgotten
does not forget her beloved
now hot and baking in the
disjointed unhitched sunlight
called not-Puff (Sturm) not-Jackie (Drang)

called alt-
and hate
and patriotism

the moon has made her move
and soon will shed her grace
a respite from unrelenting baking light

An eclipse of Grace is coming
to save from the eclipse of Grace
found in this screaming perpetual
day without softness
without tender coolness
and velvet still…

I hear the moon move
in the dry drumbeat of bramble
as I pass by, smelling their
desperate intense perfume

the canes of thistles move
in the wind like bones
and sing to me

sooon  soooon…
beneath the croon
of probing beams
that are definitely
way more than they seem

the sky will bend and yield
as moon she rides in day
and comes to eat, to take within
her belly all the taint
of poison so-called light

our moment of escape will then present!
a moment, chains can break and curses rent!
in dark while others fall upon their face
we who watch well an eclipse of Grace…

can learn there at her knee, her royal knee
and small eclipses everywhere we’ll be
from our burnt courage burnished bronze in heat
as we the moon and grace together greet
and mercy kisses truth…at last they meet

may things be healed by our eclipsing feet.

The One Who Knows | Charissa’s Grace Notes

This poem is the antidote to “The 25 Hour Yesterday”…and it is attempting to write about redemption, and how it is only relational and never NEVER legal.  You want to see changes in this world?  Then change your relational dynamics…with yourself…with others…with the Divine…

“…It is the Valley of Dry Bones,
the charnal parched and bony strand
with bone-dust laying down for sand
that walking comes The One Who Knows
and singing re-creation songs
and the truths we tell make harmonies
to reach the very stars…”

Source: The One Who Knows | Charissa’s Grace Notes

Come Home To Yourself | Charissa’s Grace Notes

My dearest heart of hearts.  She alone stood steadfast, faithful, amidst her own dealings and sortings and studyings…and she transitioned WITH me!

She NEVER left, shunned, or re-wrote our history to suit her current mood, as a couple have done.

She never othered or divorced as so-called friends of three decades did…

This poem is my attempt to express how I felt/feel about her, and her soul and her love.

She is the truest person I know…even when she is searching for that truth…and I love her with my bones.

PS:  It is written in my favorite meter…because I want that rhythm to speak to the central most shining thing about my darling:  her steadiness.

It all seems like a dream…like I woke up
into Real life and there you were, grinning,
that crooked lil smile and that small dimple
at your mouth’s corner, honey cupid bow.

It was as if we happy-laughed forever!
And cried for ever too, both all at once.
It was as if my torrid fever broke!
Things clear now to me, I’m in on the joke

regarding the us that we were…we are.
How I must have puzzled you, my dear!
Befuddled you and discouraged you too,
for you saw my real red and pulsing heart,

and underneath, the shade of deep dry rot…

Source: Come Home To Yourself | Charissa’s Grace Notes

This World Too Much

It was somehow so moving, so compelling
up from the shaggy earth, looming and shorn
so sleek with steel and concrete ribbons running.

It wrapped around the way
the way entwined with it
and it was wet and smelled of wind forever.

I stood, soaked to bone and fully brindled
against that wind that prodded at the dangle
of knots, of cracks, of edges all atangle.

And yet, somehow it still all glowed in glory
and still my eyes thrilled at the vital touch
of movement, place and people in the crush

perhaps I love this place, this world too much.

Breaking Beans | Charissa’s Grace Notes

AAHHH!  Wowsa…again with the metaphor choice that I love!!

Green Beans…human “beans”…and again you can launch from there.  I really REALLY like how this one turned out, sitting here a couple of years later.


the snap of those fresh green beans
the smell of fresh linen
infused with lacy scents of
fresh baked bread lingering

the sound like
*past* and *present* and *future*
punctuated with
period.  period.  period.
and my heart the ellipsis that lingers

like the freshly baked bread…

Source: Breaking Beans | Charissa’s Grace Notes

Reaping Waves | Charissa’s Grace Notes

This was a couple years ago…”viking” is metaphor for “patriarchy”…and the rest should follow naturally…


I’m no Viking, not me!
Charissa Grace?
Pshaw…I do not sail
on waves like crops,
oars for ploughs
and battle lust for seed.
I shudder at the thought!
Of harvest moments
in peaceful lands
and no limits but my lusts
and the certainty of loss
at the end of Ragnarok…

Source: Reaping Waves | Charissa’s Grace Notes

I Lost Time Today | Charissa’s Grace Notes

PLEASE:  Read this out loud, and zero in on the rhymes as the key to where to place your meter.  Lovely, lovely effort, this.


I lost time today…misplaced it completely
as I sat, wondering how
the lavender takes body and position
in the skies above.

Does it wish its way up there?
Does it woo with song and dance?

Notes so sweet floating on air
to paint and wash and seize its chance
to smear its bloody beauty stain
upon the sky’s face once so plain
just blue…and now in wonder-grains
of beauty brief that won’t remain…

I lost time today…

Source: I Lost Time Today | Charissa’s Grace Notes

Poems About Gender Dysphoria From 2014

Here are a couple of poetic attempts to describe the special hell of Gender Dysphoria.

In the first, I talk about the feelings of guilt and self-loathing…what it is like when they are tyrants inescapable.

In the second poem, pay close attention to homophones…words that sound the same and sometimes are even spelled the same and yet depending on context they have different meanings.  This is extremely important to understand if you wish to get inside this poem to the place where it will give up its honey to you.

I hope you enjoy them…3 year old poems that stand up pretty well.

That Numb Relief

Born On The Edge
tumblr_mr7ao1YaDq1sw327to1_500

Butterfly And Bone | Charissa’s Grace Notes

And again…aren’t we all?  Butterflies carved in Bone?I’m a butterfly carved of bone
white, bleached, sun-baked bone

my wings are just my lungs
spongy-red and wet but free
inside my chest is open space
soaring chasms awaiting light

butterfly, bone, breath over breadth
I’m a butterfly carved in bone

I am diamonds in the night…

Source: Butterfly And Bone | Charissa’s Grace Notes

Inside Dead Wood And Splinters | Charissa’s Grace Notes

An older poem about transition and the power of congruency


You woke me
and I didn’t even
know I was sleeping
inside dead wood and
splinters waiting for
a spark or a coal
from Your
altering
Altar

The hate and ignorance
of the petrified forest
is matched…

Source: Inside Dead Wood And Splinters | Charissa’s Grace Notes

Refresh My Thirsty Roots (For Melissa)

It’s the wind, fresh splashed
with wild rain and then dashed
across slate and sand and then

strained thru my window
thrown open and grasping
for beyond and beyond and…

then scent simply there
and all around me sent,
in my hair and nose and lungs,
as if I were the tree
and that old gnarly oak
out there was me

except that I am
sitting beside you dear,
laying there in your
innocence and cheer
still fresh from so far
away before you came

Before you were
sent so near to me,
oh my lovey,
lovely, my girl…

I sit, and drink of you
as you refresh my thirsty roots
forever until Forever.

After More Than 20 Years as Conservative Leader, Paul Williams Comes Out as Transwoman

This story is very parallel to my own.
I encourage reading it, especially for the understanding
of a Gospel of Incarnation rather than a Gospel of Law.
“Transgender teens with unsupportive parents have a suicide rate 13 times higher than their peers. They are the most at risk group in the nation. Most of those unsupportive parents are Evangelicals.

“I have been in personal contact with thousands of LGBTQ individuals and their families from seven countries on four continents. Almost without exception these souls are Christians who have been ostracized from their churches and/or families. They always ask the same painful question, ‘What do I do now?’ I feel the weight of the responsibility.

“In my previous work, I hoped to save people from spiritual suffering. In my current work, I hope to save people from dying.”

Paula went on to state: “I do not care about their (evangelicals’) brand of orthodoxy.””I have no interest in debating it. It is of little interest to me.

However, I do care about their orthopraxy, how they practice the Christian faith. I find it lacking. I find any religion lacking that leads with judgment instead of leading with acceptance and love.”

Source: After More Than 20 Years as Conservative Leader, Paul Williams Comes Out as Transwoman

In Arpeggio Miles | Charissa’s Grace Notes

Ahhhh…omg how I LOVE this poem!!

I wanted to talk about gaps, about distances…
those that exist on a vast continuum of connection,
and yet no matter how close you get,
you never really can connect…

the gap between two people, regardless of closeness…
the gap between the earth and moon in spite of gravitational pull…
the gap between us and ourselves…
the gap between stars…

and I wanted to also talk about connections, too…

and of course, it is a simple love poem at heart.

I encourage you to spend some time with it,
and perhaps even linger with some of these
metaphors and layers of meaning…

it’s a rich poem and I am quite happy with it.


Prelude:
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.…

Source: In Arpeggio Miles | Charissa’s Grace Notes

Burnt Offerings | Charissa’s Grace Notes

This is an older poem, and I really like its rhythm.  Try reading it aloud, for you will find that the sound of the words shapes how you say the coming ones.

These words are my offerings burnt
singed in fires of pain and hurt
written as gouts of bright blood spurt
from my contrite soul.

I take treasure from my heart
pleasures, pains, my every dart
burn them for a brand new start
the incense of my spirit …

Source: Burnt Offerings | Charissa’s Grace Notes

This Fire Of Fires

Together
We have nurtured
A small sprout
A sapling
A tiny spring

We fed with time
We watered with tears
Our endless selfish bull shit
Gave food to this living child
Of ours… Our love, Love

This garden of delight
This torrent of life
This fire of fires

A Futrospection | Charissa’s Grace Notes

Written long looong ago, when this lil crabbie “Cancer”
was becoming friends with a lil scorpion Scorpio…
a match made in heaven and forged on earth.

It was trying to project into the future,
based on the past and spoken in the (then) present.

I hope you enjoy it.  I know

if you met my beloved you would admire her as I do.


There is a tenderness
in your eyes
in your voice
a trembling

so I can never
tell whose mother
or little girl
you might be

and even I
must believe it
tonite, remembering
in your eyes

such a tenderness…

Source: A Futrospection | Charissa’s Grace Notes

i sit in winds | Charissa’s Grace Notes


i sit in winds
and let my shawl flow
loose around me
and lifted like wings

and as it unfurls
the hard ground exhales
and i become light
as i sit in winds

my heart rises up
when liberty sings
though limbs sit so still
though limbs sit in winds…

Source: i sit in winds | Charissa’s Grace Notes

I Live Inbetween | Charissa’s Grace Notes

look for me, search
in my solid words…
and you will miss me
in their sparkle-spazzle
and solid spunk echoes.

i’m in the spaces
in between my words
shining and shim’ring
in dance-implications…

Source: I Live Inbetween | Charissa’s Grace Notes

Living Origami | Charissa’s Grace Notes

A poem about the fingers of God inside the fears and frailties of a woman.  And yes, I am cognizant of the implications, and wonder why this is not more commonly experienced by others…the touch of God is so very intimate…
I feel your fingers
in my folds and
my fine feathers
ruffling, riffing

sometimes ripping
for your pleasure
folding me and
creasing me

until I do not
recognize
the shape
I’m in.

Turning this way…

Source: Living Origami | Charissa’s Grace Notes

The Sound of Beauty Silent

Standing beside gull-force winds
strong enough to blow a waterfall
back into its own face, something
no man has experienced but needs to
Image result for waterfall flowing backwards gifs
I watch Beauty roll down and meet unbelief.
And I remember all over again how I am haunted
by the ghost that grows when Beauty glows and screams
to the body transcendent and compelling and

then goes silent once again
a waterfall thundering down
and pushed away with every might
and longing stirs all over again

as I just wonder how it is
that God can be resisted, how
that God has chosen suffering, now
in person and in heaven, wonder

that God is…that God is…that

then the song is sung by Beauty’s
absence in the scattering
the scurrying, no one cannot not be aware
and longing for the shelter

of The Safe Wing Stretched Divine
though it feels ominous, and gone and here
the absence of what cannot leave
beauty…or itself.
Image result for a guillotine
a guillotine to answer to the knife in my clenched fist
and I realize I must go thru this once again, this absence
that leaves all things scattered, scurrying, suffocating
in the Stripping of the Altar, in the scattering of all

and the sound of tombs slammed shut
and the sound of screaming triumph
and the sound of darkness looming
and the sound of Beauty Silent

all compel a halt to movement
so we listen in the stillness
to the absence, to the absence
to the looming screaming absence

and the Sound of Beauty Silent

 

 

 

My Offering Of Violent Worship

Born transgender…
concealed…
in rushes, in tulies
wandering deserts
and walking lonesome valleys…

and we walked around the sun
50 times, spinning, circling
while I, spinning and circling
spiraled out of myself

torn in two
or maybe parted
by Solomon’s Silver Blade
my inner me stifled and screaming
“Give Her Away! Give Her Away!”

as he just shrugged and said
“I don’t wanna be here anyway”

but then to come to myself slow
trickling back home
and draining up and in
before coming out

the sun so bright
the wind so fresh
creation dancing

and the stink of hate and horror
and the sting of brutal spittle
and eyes that bruise and stab

and the cries of the powerless
and the silence of the othered
and the dust of death settling

I dance, I sing, I SHOUT!
I whirl and lift that dust to the wind
as my offering of violent worship
of our Liberty God, Our Graceful GOD
our LOVING GOD

and I hear Their loving strong whisper:
“For such a time as this you were created”

and I take my place with Ester
and take Mary of Bethany’s hand

and settle into this truest truth for me:

“My maids and I will fast likewise.
And so I will go to the king, which is against the law;
and if I perish, I perish!”

ever Spring, ever Autumn

My own poem from last year…I do really favor this one.

it looks the same to you
whether you stand
in winter or summer

…the gate of my heart…

The Great Gate

Source: ever Spring, ever Autumn