Saturday, November 17, 2012

strange fruit.

I decided to let it go. All the anger, all the helplessness and frustration. I converted the back file room of the shop into a printmaking studio and will spend most of a week hand carving linoleum blocks and printing over 200 holiday cards for businesses and clients that work with my shop. I shut out the world and found something that has been in hibernation, taking in experiences and contemplating how to utilize them in the most powerful way. My body and brain are tingling awake, and finding dimension in what seemed previously like a flat world.

In perfect tandem with the solar eclipse, helplessness is being eclipsed out of my life.

I am reborn.

Monday, November 12, 2012

the river tasted me once, spit me back out, so i'm not afraid of her.

The devil? He exists. I've seen him. He lives in the shadows, and fills the holes in our being caused by self doubt. He lived in the words that found me on the playground, whispers from my peers that fell from the lips of their parents, the PTA, who saw we didn't go to church, didn't follow the rules, didn't attend bake sales or fundraisers. Satan worshipers they called us. But he also followed me home at the end of every day, as I trudged as slowly as I could through the thickness of trees in my lush little town, past houses, each one with a different personality to be considered, until the foreboding of turning the corner into my own neighborhood. Often, as I was growing up, I awoke in the middle of the night to the devil standing in my doorway with my light on, watching me as I slept. In the guise of Stepfather, my voice had no meaning, for the devil distracted my mother with lust and laziness, and my fear and words and needs were insignificant to the soul she traded for the ease of darkness, and the wickedness of idleness. As I grew into my voice, and my strength, I would have killed him, beaten his now fragile drug infused bones to a puddle of hate, with no remorse, but it didn't matter how hard I tried to protect my family, the greed and hunger for an easy life was still a flame in the remnants of my mother's soul. She slept with the devil to acquire things without the effort that honest people earned with the hard work of their bodies. She gave away one of her children for an afternoon, traded the innocence of my little brother, as well as her own body for a piece of my Stepfather's inheritance money before it was lost in drug trafficking and prostitutes. The devil drives a peacock blue 350Z and carries a duffel bag full of money.

I did not get a chance to kill him, and he changed his form to fit my evolving insecurities. Donning small, sweet breasts and a sassy upturned nose, he inflicted a pain so close to my heart I mistook it for the fire of being in love, and I lost myself in the urgency of feeling that ransacked my body for three years, the scar tissue building up so fast it obscured everything important in my life. 'Worthless', she screamed at me, so many times those three horrible, lost years, I had that word for breakfast everyday, I drank it from her lips when we fucked in the shadows and I believed it. Nothing fans the flames of abuse like honest intentions. My goodness and trust were the knives she used to flay me open to the spine like the center attraction at a pig roast, skin charred, and the devil invited everyone to grab a plastic fork and cheap off-brand barbeque sauce to sample the texture and flavor of my beauty and innocence and moral integrity.

I thought I had put some distance between me and the devil, but I glimpsed him the other day, lurking in the eyes of my coworkers in the shop, in the poisonous words that have suddenly poured slick and stinging from the one person who had my back, whom I shared my triumphs and accumulating dreams with, as well as my fears and insecurities. It doesn't matter what I do, good or bad, if I have to defend myself from verbal abuse, or I fight for someone to get a raise, or take on responsibilities I won't get paid for, simply because it needs to be done, the guys in the shop will whisper over the table at the lunches I have been ostracized from about how all of those things merely prove that I am the reason seasonal workers have been let go in the past, that I am the reason people who don't work get addressed by the bosses for not working, that raises are withheld as well as handed out because of me, that failed crops and plagues are dictated by my whims, that anything I receive: respect, accolades, raises, authority are born solely from the whiteness of my skin, rather than my competence  rather than my own strength and ability. And I watch smart, capable people choose ignorance over growth, to spit the devil's rime rather than recognize the truth and beauty of the people around them. It doesn't matter if I have no awareness of things that are happening that I get blamed for, but they are still my fault, and every gesture I make with good and honest intentions gets twisted by these people I use to love, into cruel, evil shadows of themselves. The only way to protect myself is to become a ghost again, when I have been trying so hard to become real.

All of these occurances feed off of the depth of my insecurities, my need for validation, my earnest desire to see people treated fairly and getting what they deserve, good intentions and open, honest conversations, and the more of myself I give away, in love or in fear, the more I fan the flames of hellfire that scorch the souls of my feet and stumble on my path. I am a different person than I was three days ago. I can no longer blame my childhood for the setbacks and confusion of my adult self, or use it as an excuse for my lack of awareness of the darkness that waits in the shadows of every action of my physical being, of every word that falls unguarded from my mouth to be twisted and misunderstood and used against me. I am solely responsible for what I give away of myself, and what I allow to dog me. Self doubt and insecurity are the doorways that open to the devil, and the only way to escape is to eradicate all self doubts and insecurity. The only way to survive, is to wholly, without question, trust your instincts, trust your intuition, and ignore your fears. YOU HAVE TO TRUST YOURSELF COMPLETELY AND WITHOUT QUESTION. Yourself and no one else.

Then the devil will be blind.