Smile, and Nod.

So last year (as well as the previous year), I recall writing a post around my birthday about how my mother flaked me off for the dinner that she had planned and made me commit myself to way ahead of time. She is a professional at this type of thing and has been celebrating my birthday in such a manner since I can remember, in all honesty; so it doesn’t affect me, anymore. If anything, the instance of this type of things wins me money placed on bets made with various people leading up to my birthday, without fail.

  •  May the Gods bless my mother and each and every one of her strange and remarkably injurious shortcomings toward her children.

This year, she surprised me a bit by completely switching the date of my birth to that of yesterday. We sat through a meal last night following an intense disagreement surrounding the day that I was actually born. Upon my pulling out my driver’s license, she even went as far as to try and tell me that they incorrectly recorded my birth details (because I was born on the reservation and the record-keeping wasn’t too reliable back then), a statement which I KNOW to be untrue because my father told me so many times about taking me, himself, to the local hospital and county clerk, etc. to handle my true and technical registration as a person.

In my Life, any discretion between my parents always ends in my own mind with my long-dead (too fucking long already) father winning, hands down. He was a logical man; an engineer brain, a computer geek, and a military spirit…the one and only fluke to his behavior was the uncharacteristic element of “a psychedelic artist”, in spite of being the notorious “wet blanket” among his friends due to his unwillingness to ever try any type of hallucinogen during the 60’s and 70’s. He was a damned good acid-trip painter; and painted shit that made me cross-eyes, even as a sober little girl. But, I digress…

Point is, there has always been a striking contrast between my parents; the story of them is so bizarre and happenstance in its totality that it left me and my brothers pondering their union as very young children, in the face of such differences in their characters. Apparently, these ponderings will never end until we are all dead and gone, because they were strong as ever last night as I “celebrated my birthday” with my beloved mother, Willow, three days early.

Sullen Swim.

If you’ve ever swam outward,
against the tides,
using only –
one arm and its hand;

You will know, then,
the difficulty lies,
in between –
a horizon and the sand;

If you’ve embraced the ocean,
in the blackness of night,
amid curious faces –
worn by beast, and no man;

If you’ve long made point,
to swim beyond,
the buoys –
farthest from the land;

If the water doesn’t sting,
your eyes or burn skin,
carry on then,
carry out the plan;

If you have ever taken,
that final, Sullen Swim,
to let spread –
the ashes of beloved wise-man;

If you’ve ever hated,
what you usually love,
an affect of –
the end of a father’s lifespan;

If you’ve been tangled in kelp-beds,
way out with the otters,
cracking clams–
with their human-like hands;

If you’ve been out too long,
dazed by a breaker’s blow,
defying–
the tugging at your hand;

If you’ve been spun,
like a washing machine,
hard tumbled –
inside a tornado of sand;

If you’ve had that moment,
when reality,
starts dawning –
quite differently than planned;

If so, you must know as well as me,
of a poisonous affinity,
the salinity –
measuring
four quarters of who I am.

 

Set On Fire.

I found out about it this morning upon waking up to look at my phone (set on silent overnight, as per my usual routine); and I will say that my heart dropped down into my belly somewhere and hasn’t yet returned to its proper place.
I groggily read just a few snippets of the slew of text messages sent throughout the night by my Mom; catching things like:

“Your father (by this, she means my step-father) went to get Boo downtown and hasn’t come back…”,
Or:

“He’s STILL not home, I’m worried…”,
Or:

“It’s been THREE HOURS NOW! I have no car, and I’m going crazy…”
Or finally:

“His phone just goes straight to voicemail…”

It was just the day before yesterday that I sat out on the front porch with him to escape my mother’s  hollering into her Bluetooth inside (she still doesn’t grasp the notion of the other person being able to hear her fine if she just speaks in a normal tone); that I verbalized some very haunting visions to him in a foretelling plea for his logical side to come out and hear me…in total vain, it turns out.

Boo has been consistently dishonest and destructive to my parents ever since that dreaded moment in which my mother was struck by some gods-awful notion that she had to see Boo through the next few surgeries until the tracheotomy is removed and she can speak naturally again; she has brought with her presence in their home nothing but grief and disarray – dope fiend maneuvers, and all things associated with a fucking street hooker’s lifestyle, in essence. My parents are so naive…sickeningly naive…naive from age, apparently. Because, the clueless and vulnerable old folks that each has evolved to represent these days were NOT the two people who I had around during my teen-aged years, by a long shot.

  • Boo’s despicable thievery has, thus far, totaled up to at least: $3,500.00 (yes, you read that correctly) stolen out of my sleeping father’s wallet in the wee morning hours while she was awake and whacked out on drugs; but, there have been other instances as well of stolen cash in much smaller amounts, too.
  • She has stolen family heirloom jewelry (oddly enough, her father literally stole pieces of the exact same set almost 20 years ago) from my mother’s room while being left alone at their house during the workday.
  • She stole ALL of my mother’s medicines (a very notably sized plethora of pills including but not limited to Oxycontin, various tranquilizers, psyche meds, and the handful of different medicines that my mom NEEDS for rheumatoid arthritis and lupus.
  • She stole my father’s entire wallet; as well as a stun gun that was deep inside of one of her bureau drawers.

In a nutshell, she has been horribly ungrateful and disrespectful, she has remained in constant violation of the home that they have, once again, opened up to her in her time of need. Last night should have undoubtedly been “the straw” for both of them…

My father drove downtown last night to pick Boo up at the drop of a dime when she called, claiming she had been punched in the face and her phone had been stolen (I live in the silicon valley, a live and wide awake place where downtown isn’t welcoming at nighttime to the average person); 

when he arrived to the place she had directed to meet her at, he was beaten nearly to death by five grown men who appeared from nowhere – only seconds before Boo suddenly appeared, as well. One of the cowards even went into his car and found his ginormous Maglite flashlight, then proceeded to beat him in his face with it until my dad went unconscious in the street. I was not there…I do not know for myself any of the minor details surrounding this heinousness; but I do know that it changes everything – forever…for ME at least.

The Empath and the Opportunist – Continued.

NOTE: “The Opportunist” is someone who broke my heart pretty completely about a year ago; someone who I gave too much to, and got little in return from; someone who made it painfully apparent when I failed to present any further opportunity for him that he had no reason to stay.

He showed up on Saturday to watch the fight at the Man Cave with his lifelong friend, my roommate, Dice. I had known he would be coming – they were ALL gonna be coming, I knew (it turned out to be 16 men and 2 women, including myself) watching the fight.
His face told very sad stories immediately upon opening the front door and seeing him: eyes down-turned and swollen, bottom lip protruding out slightly…unable to make any eye contact with me. I knew something was wrong right away – because despite everything we have been through, he has never been unable to look me in the eye. Oddly, before I could even give it any logical thought, I blurted out:
“What’s wrong Opportunist? Is it your Dad?” (Of course I used his real name, though)
He just fell apart right there on the spot. Came unglued altogether. His father has been deteriorating at a sporadic pace from Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s; and has recently become very fearful, paranoid and much like a strange child to his own helpless family. I watched when I was a young girl, as my great-grandmother faded to Alzheimer’s – it undoubtedly broke my great-grandfather’s heart and was the most traumatizing experience that he had ever lived through…I often think he wished he wouldn’t have.
Anyway, the empath in me was alive and well on Saturday; I hugged him, and sat with him, and talked with him for hours – let him talk about the living nightmare that he is currently undertaking in regard to watching his Dad slip away in mind and body. We ended up missing the main event fight altogether because he was obviously in greater need of talking to someone about his Dad. In a house full of his best friends that he’s known since first grade or earlier – I found it striking that it was ME he ended up in the garage with all day and night while none of them bothered to even inquire about his father’s status. I guess that’s just a guy thing, I don’t know. Either way, there we were together.

Running Distantly.

I remember these things,
the late afternoon’s lulling,
“G.I. Joe – A Real American Hero”,
the ‘Three’s Company’ opening theme,

the sound of an overhead airplane’s engine,
fading away to the south, as the evening draws in,
the sounds of a lawnmower, running distantly,
cutting down grass and sending the scent to me,

I remember the pipes in the walls that would moan,
a surefire way to know when someone was home,
the sound that the front gate’s dragging board would make,
the dogs in the back that always scared the Pizza Boy away,

Anticipation of dinnertime and seeing my Father’s face,
every evening, the hope of seeing him walk into our place,
the leaves skipping up our walkway alongside his tired feet,
the Gods blessed me with a Dad so dedicated and hard-working,

these things I remember, they are mine to recall,
only because of the good I had – my Dad, after all,
and I’ve never been sorry in the slightest amount,
for basking in his warmth before it was snuffed out.

Sullen Swim.

If you’ve ever swam,

against the tides,

using only –

one arm and its hand;

You will know then,

that difficulty lies,

in between –

a horizon and the sand;

If you’ve swam underwater,

in the blackness of night,

seen faces –

worn by beast, and no man;

If you’ve made point,

to swim beyond,

the buoys –

farthest from the land;

If the water doesn’t sting,

your eyes or burn skin,

carry on –

carry out the plan;

If you have ever taken,

the final, Sullen Swim,

to dump –

ashes of special man;

If you’ve ever hated,

what you love,

an effect of –

the end of a lifespan;

If you’ve gone out too far,

beyond the otters,

cracking shells –

with their hands;

If you’ve been out too long,

until you turn code blue,

ignoring –

the tugging at your hand;

If you’ve been spun,

like a washing machine,

tumbled around –

inside a tornado of sand;

if you’ve had that moment,

when your reality,

hits you –

a little differently than planned;

Then you must know then,

a poisonous affinity,

salinity –

Four quarters of who I am.