(written Sept 4 2017)
I absolutely don’t have the energy to do this today. To write for a whole hour. But I’m starting to fall behind and I just can’t stand the thought of not finishing this project when I’ve come so far. It’s been a week of deep, deep inner work, working with a creative limits coach and I think there are things going on inside me that are just taking up energy. My energy seems to be bouncing up and down, and my moods with them. I will just try to push through this, but I fear it will not be very readable. If only I could think of a memory. Well, there is this one thing. Last night I had a dream, and I know it was part of the coaching.
I was bullied a lot as a child. In elementary school it was more physical. But when I got to high school it was different, an experience of isolation, exclusion mostly. But there was one girl, RR, who used to really dislike me. I don’t know why. I know that she wasn’t a happy person, but why she chose me in particular I’m not totally sure. (Maybe she didn’t, and I just didn’t notice her relationships with other people. She always seemed popular, but maybe she had other victims) She lived in the boarding school and her parents were in town, so I don’t know what that means, but I can’t imagine she felt loved or secure in an arrangement like that. RR would, for example, take my things and hide them in empty lockers in various parts of the school. Once she took a leather jacket of my dad’s that he’d kept from the seventies. I knew it was her that had taken it, but she got angry and vicious when I asked her. Later, it was found in her room. She got a little scolding from the Dean of Women, but nothing else happened. I haven’t thought of her in years. I see her on facebook, but even that’s been a few years probably because of the fb algorithms. We don’t exactly have a lot in common. She runs a high end jewelry and fashion boutique in Vancouver. I haven’t thought of her or that time, I haven’t really cared to make the effort to try to untangle that time either. There was so much angst and sadness then, I guess that’s probably true of many if not most people in their high school days. RR was just kind of part of the wash of feelings and part of how glad and grateful I was to get away from that town.
But working with the limits coach (I think maybe I mentioned her in the last essay) I got energy back from a crush I had when I was very little. Then, in the third session I got another ball of energy back. This one was black and turned into a black dragon that was protecting me as a little girl. This morning when I woke up from the dream I had a feeling this was related. Maybe I’m getting energy back from RR. In the dream, we were working together at a camp. My friend Sad Clown was in a bed, sick, and she called me into her room. She told me that she liked RR, and that she found her very open and willing to take feedback. When I got out of bed I felt good, better than I have in a long time. But now that feeling is gone and I feel deflated and depleted.
My therapist did some of this work with me a couple of years ago. And he said it can take about ninety days for a change to take root. It makes sense. There are so many structures built around all the pain in our lives. And to dismantle those takes time, and shifting, and energy, lots of emotional energy. I have been working with my rejection complex since 2010. IT TAKES TIME. I know this. But it’s hard to be patient. And, of course, there are lots of gains along the way. I’m not in the same place I was in 2010, or even the same place I was a year ago. I’m stronger, I’m more accountable to myself. But, at the end of the day I’m still me and I’m still emotional and I’m still …alone.
Today I saw a picture of Bright Ears and the Beatbox and Colour and Gesture and Supercharged and some other folks in Toronto. I was so jealous. I wished I was there, too. It’s hard to be here, even though the Dancing Poet is back from the west coast. It’s hard to be alone in my home after all the community living.
On the other hand I do have more energy to work on the show, and to work in general. On school and on my job. It’s like something has been released. So I want to be patient with myself and my energy. And just try to keep working even when I don’t want to. Like right now. I don’t want to write this. But I’m showing up. Don’t ask me why. I don’t even know. I hope you don’t read this.
I have a pile of journals in my closet. I have a box of journals at home. In the last two and half year I have filled at least twenty of these little moleskin type books. I just put everything in it. So why am I doing this, here? I wanted these to be essays, but on a night like this I don’t feel clear enough to put thoughts in order.
I spent a good portion of today reading Poiesis and Enchantment. I was reading about set theory. It’s quite a bit over my head, but it is getting exciting. I have a dream of creating a series of arts based experiments that help me to uncover new ideas (new to me, anyway) about the nature of time. The set theory and the idea of topological theory are giving me some clues as to how I might do that. Maybe there are ways to create conditions for information to appear without having to “bracket” variables, and thus influence the process. This is one of the really important learnings from Meeting the Universe Halfway. That the measurement problem, and the uncertainty theory are not so much about perspective as they are about how the universe is organized. How, when we measure one thing, then the other information does not exist. I think of it right now as if the universe were completely continuous (and this is what is important about set theory, is that it shows HOW the universe is continuous, and how that continuity is not two or three dimensional, but that it is made up of all kinds of interconnections of emotion, spirit, time, passion…it’s exciting. The implications are dawning on me slightly. I have to wait to see what comes through. With measurement (not numerological measurement, but more like attention) identities or entities or distinct points appear. So maybe this will bring me to a knowing of time that is a bit akin or analogous to the understandings of metaphor that appeared when I did my Master’s work. Then, through that study, I began to see the relatedness and the non-linguistic language orientation of all things and how they transfer meaning. That was a huge shift for me, not in thinking but in feeling. I am hoping that this study of time has a bit of a similar effect somehow, that something is illuminated in this way. Because the metaphor study really changed my work as a facilitator. It made it much easier to see dynamics and to be able to act in a more subtle way to shift relationships and the emotional field in the room through suggestions, body language, eye contact and poetry.
Anyway, that’s what has had my interest today. Yesterday I started working on the narrative for the show. That was also fun. I set the timer for an hour. Thanks to these writings, the feeling of how long an hour is and how to create in that much time, is becoming more clear. It had kind of faded since the hour-long short story writing practice I had seven or eight years ago. I know it will help. Because, I’m sure I told you, I want the thesis to be a novel in the end, so it will be great to have a strong writing muscle. Just to write the essays and the thesis itself it’s going to help a lot. But this narrative was fun, and it came through in a science fiction form I wasn’t expecting. A kind of post-climate disaster everyone-in-spaceships thing. Not very interesting as a premise, I know, but that’s what is coming through and I am going to trust it. That’s how I did the drawings in the first place. That’s how these writing are coming through (weird and brook-babbly as they are). As much as I am afraid of these writings and very often embarrassed by them, they ARE happening. That’s something.
I think there is something about showing up. I remember Bright Ears talking about it in November. That the showing up is the work itself. Because I can’t control the creativity. I can only control if I am open to it. I guess that is an extremely simplified way of thinking about Xin Wei’s writing, too. That by sitting down to waggle my fingers over this little purple keyboard I am opening the conditions for something to happen. What happens, I can’t control. But something is born.
I don’t want this to be all I have. I am so grateful for how my life is right now, but it is dry in a way. Lonely. Some little voice in me keeps prodding, enjoy it, enjoy it. That when/if I ever do end up in a partnership or a family I will look back on these long lonely days and wish for the solitude. Funny, isn’t’ it? Not really.
Ugh. Only half way done. I’m sorry. I’m sorry for you if you are reading this, and I ask you to stop. I have nothing else to say, and nothing else to write about.
I’ve been learning to wear bras for the first time in my life, this week. The real kind, with the lace and the underwires. I never have before. But after the second session with the limits coach, suddenly there was the energy and the desire to do this. It feels kind of like I’m training myself. It’s not comfortable. But I do like how beautiful I feel. The beauty and the posture make me feel powerful. I wonder if I will ever get into heels?
How to keep going here? I’ve been making some collage poems for Bright Ears since his fortieth is in a few days. I don’t know why I always want to give him gifts. He has that magnetic thing some people have. I’ve had the collages on my kitchen table for some months. For a while I thought they wouldn’t happen, I just couldn’t see them coming together, but today I got a little bit of them mapped out. That was fun. I also danced this morning, which also felt great. I look up right now from this writing and I see some copal that Silver Horns gave to me when I saw her last. Maybe I will burn some of that tonight. I’m all about the smoke lately, smoking, burning cedar. And I’ve always like copal a lot. It lifts my spirits.
I have been wanting to take better care of my energy. It isn’t good to get this depressed all the time. I used to sparkle. But as I get older and it starts to really settle in that I will likely spend this lifetime alone it has been harder and harder to shine. I wonder if I will get past this phase eventually? Just accept things as they are. That’s what I wrote last time, isn’t it. That I want to WANT WHAT I HAVE. I’ve been trying, and today felt like I was really on top of it, it did. But then by evening it’s like some of the power has worn off and I need a recharge. Sleep. Thank goodness we sleep. Have you ever thought of that? That without sleep life would be unbearable? When I have insomnia I get a glimpse of it, but not really. Because it’s one thing when I myself can’t sleep, but imagine if no one could, or ever did? If time was continuous and just…relentless? It’s the dreaming and the black nothingness that makes it possible to stand the entropic glare of the day, I think.
I’m looking at a picture of my mother, my aunt and my grandmother on my mother’s wedding day. They look happy, but not overjoyed. My mother looks peaceful, but not joyful. They are all so beautiful in the picture, but somehow subdued. I guess they knew that mom was leaving, that their lives were about to be changed forever. I think about marriage so much. What was she really thinking on that day? There is no point in asking her, because that young woman is gone. That twenty-one year old beauty who didn’t know what was coming. Now, even if she could remember, she would have to tell me about now. That’s all we can ever tell each other. What is now. So what is memory then? Where is the past? These things bother me. What is this photograph and where does it belong? Does it belong here in the now with me and if so what could it possibly represent, if the past itself does not exist?
But that’s silly. The past does exist. It’s more a question of where is it? What is its form, what is its matter, where does it connect to the contiguity of all things in now? Is it through emotion? Is that why emotion is so important? Because it is along the vector of emotion that the streams of time are overlapped and related to each other?
Beside the copal is a rust horseshoe. One of the big white horse Platinum that the Whisperer used to have when we were kids. I have some gifts here that have been given to me that remind me that I do have friends and that I am loved, no matter how alone I can feel. It was so kind of him to give me this horseshoe. And the Baby Tiger, he gave me a vial of leaves from the thirteen sacred trees of England that he collected with his mother when he was thirteen. These precious things. These things full of intention and energy from the past, full of love, and then given to me in love. What does that say about the past? What does a gift say about the past? Baby Tiger’s album is coming out soon. I think he is about to become extremely famous. He is already quite well known, but this is going to be the turning. I am so happy for him, he has that kind of bright golden spirit, that you just know he is in a lifestream of power and success. His brother, too. It’s not that their lives are perfect. Just that they are full of power.
I am hoping that the limits work restores some of mine. I don’t know. I know that I have accomplished some things in this life that I am a little proud of, but I don’t know if I have a lifestream that will really ever become something coherent. Maybe I will just continue to teach, to write my little words like these, these meaningless words that are really doing not much else but marking the time of my life as it flies by, as it streaks by, leaving light and waste and memories behind it. And then there will be death. My death impulse is receded quite a lot (what’s that called again, thanatos?) but it doesn’t stop me from thinking about it a lot. The last few days I’m thinking about the me-ness of death. Where does it go? Into the dark matter, right? I fall into the depths of matter and become again part of the molten shapelessness of is.
Whew. Twenty more minutes. Can I even make it? It is like trying to push my spirit out through my hands. It’s almost painful, to try to let the words appear in the brain. Maybe I will mediate after this. Though more likely I will feel a bit burnt and eat something and watch a sit com or the next part of the history of science fiction I found on Kanopy. It would be good to meditate. Today I watched a three minute clip of an ex-comedian who turned into a motivational speaker and got hooked on meditation. It’s like he’s born again. His clips can be interesting, though he seems so incredibly immature compared to someone like Michael Stone. There is something endearing about him, though. He seems to think meditation will cure it all. He talks about being your real self, and that the real self is bigger than the little ego self. And then he has all these quips and funny things that make him kind of endearing. Today he was talking about the silence. The silence that is below everything, in between everything. I have been hearing it ever since. There is, there is silence in the world that surrounds the earth. It is so vast, that silence and, yes, you can hear it. He says that in that silence everything is answered, everything is clear. I listen into it and I know that life is short, and that there is nothing to complain about. If I listen deeply to it now while I am typing what will happen? I listen to it when Shams comes to me. Maybe I will try it now, just for a few minutes, before it is time to open the fiction valve and then be done with this horror. Like I said, I’m a few essays behind, I think four or maybe even five, so I need to do this again tomorrow. I hope I can find the energy. There is SO MUCH to do this week. But that’s good. It’s so good. It’s good to be a bit busy so the tears can’t open up again.
Okay. So I tap into the silence. And I hear the computer first, it’s interfering buzzing. Then I hear the street, a car outside on the road. I hear the little clock in my living room. I hear myself breathing. I feel the peace that is all around me and it is not full of joy. It is a smooth, cold peace. I feel the roundness of the planet. I feel the planet spinning. I feel the sun, over to one side. I feel the possibility that we really are suspended in space, anti-gravity, moving and turning through infinity. How can this be? How can I sit in a room, with a light on and a screen glaring and talk to people in the future (though for your sake I hope you aren’t reading this) and at the same time be on a rock that is in space and that is a tiny tiny thing going round a big bright ball of fire, and that ball of fire itself is circling and is tiny tiny tiny in the vastness of other balls of fire and rock. And yet here is a rock in front of my, beside the copal and the horseshoe. I listen into the silence and I know that it doesn’t matter if I’m lonely. It doesn’t matter that the American President is a very very dangerous joke. It doesn’t matter that white supremacists are rising all around us, and that there are floods in India, in Texas, that there are landslides and pipelines and clear cuts and that we are all about to die. Because we were never here in the vastness of time. What is time in outer space? That’s something I could find out pretty easily and in fact I think I learned it once. You would think you’d never forget something like that. That the fact of being in space should be the most important thing to my consciousness. But it is a relatively new thought and the thought of finding a partner to take care of me and that I can love and take care of is an old ancient thought that is buried in my DNA and that expresses itself in a longing so deep that the stars seem small and it seems big when what is real is the very opposite.
I thought I was going out alone. I went to see Shabazz Palaces at the Fairmount Theatre (this is true). I walked in, and I sat on a stool. I have my red purse with me and I was wearing a shirt and a the grey cashmere sweater I scored for thirty dollars in April and one of my new bras. I sat and watched the opening act. When they finally began to play it was magic, but I had to blink twice, because they are always just two, but today there was someone else behind them. There were bass lines, live ones, not the live PA but a real bass, and there was a shape, a feminine shape, and I got as close to the stage as I could. I could see it, and then I couldn’t. And then I did, for sure. There was Dagmar, on the stage, playing her damned bass! It couldn’t be. I turned to one of the awkward white people beside me, who were all standing and nodding, (except for the extremely aggressive hippie head banging inappropriately beside me…he kept banging into everyone and soon security was going to throw him out) I asked the man beside me if he had ever seen the bassist before but he looked at me like I was crazy. I’m not crazy, am I? Of course I must be and I’m shocked that this is the first time I’ve thought of it. Characters from my own writing are coming alive and showing up in my life so of course I am out of my mind, at least I am perched between realities and it is not clear where I am. I mean, if it is hard to understand a memory then what is this? I read something, though, in an article called the neuro-phenomenology of dreaming, which suggested in a very interesting way that hallucinations and dreams are nothing like each other. And these two are both, aren’t they. AND they are fiction. So now what? I turn to leave and bump into a big chest behind me. It is Ram, and he’s smiling. He hugs me. I have to admit it feels so good. I’ve been needing closeness. Real or not I need this. She’s good, isn’t she? How can this be happening, I ask him. He leans down and I shout again. Oh, they like it, he said, they get us. They’re doing the same thing. What, I ask, what are they doing. They are dreaming into their lives, he said, just like you are. But I didn’t do this on purpose I shout at him. Purpose? He said. No one does. You are simply living your constitution. This is what you were built for, my love. Ram smiled at me. I hadn’t noticed before how cute and crowded and clean his teeth were. He bent forward and I thought he might want to kiss me but he didn’t. He pressed his cheek to mine and squeezed me. I got you, he said. Everything is okay.
Well, this was horrible. But it’s also the longest one yet. So. There’s one last meaningless thought for you. Reader, please tell me you didn’t get this far. If you did, I am sending you a lot of love, because you must be lonely, too.