To My Scottish Clanswoman

The Stewart clan motto: Courage grows strong at a wound.

Deep in my DNA you raise your sword
of fiery retribution and vengeance.

To battle, to the death! Triggered by
the bloody attack and ultimatums:

you do not belong and never have.
Do as I say or leave and never

come back. A spiteful vindictive
manchild with so much power

to hurt, to throw me out
is raging with terror. Yes, I see

it in you, my father, afraid
that death will come and grab

your breath—no ventilator for you,
old man. From your chair you lash

out at me, obviously
the cause of all your distress.

The fear porn you consume reaches
deep in our lineage, ancestors

cresting in a wave of trauma we’ve
called to surface. I sent an engraved

invitation to my own fierce warrior,
the one I’ve always judged, ashamed

by power that I’ve never claimed.
Good girls surely don’t bellow

bloodthirsty and yet, we hear.
I cower from your passion. I have

forgotten I agreed to come
and set you free. Remind me

again to embrace your wild
energy and bring you into

my coherent heart. This is
where we will start. Publish

the proclamations: my infrangible heart
is willing to host any ghosting.

These cruel tricks are no joke
wafting like smoke and still I breathe.

Inspired by: Ghosting, Infrangible, Publish, Trick and Joke.

Finding Breath

Where do I fight my experience?  Can I stop and say, this is what it is right now, and can I stay with it?~Anjet Sakkat

The I shoulds interrupt sleep
and so I rise, longing for deep
sweet breath, not this jerky ragged
approach to death. Bedraggled,
I resist the medicine
that covers and masks what is.
There is a gift to explore
a pattern in my core
though I would much rather
tickle a slick dance, gather
all my worries and doubts
undeserved love hideouts
throw them out labeled wrong
as if my birth does not guarantee
I belong. How can I soften?
The key to love these tired
eyes, this chest contracted.
My allies present the path
I so resent. And so I feel
the earth below my feet, real
and grounded, here I am
calm, watching the gentle
lift of diaphragm.

Inspired by: Undeserved, Slick, Tickle and Explore.

My Voice Creates

Be specific enough to go to the root.~Thomas Huebl

I’ve played this game before, the doctors scratching
heads bewildered, grab the constellation
of symptoms and a label, ratcheting
up the fear–there is no cure, but we
have drugs, and off we go, action-
packed, ready to do whatever it takes except
looking within to find the root.
We are compelled to make sense, to gather
disparate pieces and hide the dissonance
–we’ll call it vaping illness or I’ve got it
covid-19, use fear to isolate the willing
people. Don’t want to kill
your families? The only way is stay
away, like magic, primary resources
out of reach. How can you object?
Better safe than sorry. The economy’s
collapsed, we have a new war, this
mysterious virus that no one can test.
Our grief and agony leads to distraction.
Got any Netflix recs or can you share
your Hulu password? In reaction to
my pain contraction, triggered by the
rigged disinformation that passes
for elucidation, onslaught
I’m not buying in. Like the economy
I’m broke. Did I mention I’ve been
down this road before? It took me
years to ask for more,
to realize the doctors had no clue,
to understand I am compelled
bespelled, inquiry quelled
by my desire to be fixed
and make it quick. Go out for a pass
stay in the game, chasing power
and head-fakes, what cannot be tackled
outside. What we resist persists.
Now is the opportunity we’re granted
to turn our attention, we’ve ranted
and raged against the machine
listed all the overhauls we need
when all the while the symphony
embracing humanity’s plight
with sheer delight. Listen:
we laugh we scream we live
we die we breathe we choke
we dance we scheme.
Pull the curtain, now the wizard
is exposed, we know
deep in our hearts
this is no dream.
Wake up! Come into now.
Embody and allow
our shadows surprising
uprising, and we’ve this golden
chance to sit, welcome what is
if we can brave the waves
of fear we hold so dear.

Soundcloud recording here.

Written for Overhaul, Pass, Looking Within, Isolation and the Stream of Consciousness prompt Welcome.  Once again, the SOCS prompt never wants me to stop, leads me to places where my editing fingers plead, but that, my friends, is against the rules.  And we must all follow the rules.  

There is a free event today at 3:00 p.m. ET, a one-hour Zoom meeting with Thomas Huebl regarding the coronavirus.  You are warmly welcome to join me!

What’s Coming

At the top of my list, of course,
is breath, but my next best friend

is death. They walk me, teasing,
loyal life wants to live

escorted in the arms of lovers
dancing in the flavors love

layers. Naming every birth
we create separation illusions

with our powerful beliefs
that sweep us past and future

rocketing by the song-now.
Birds chittering through oldgrowth

forests sound the alarm as we
play foreigners, our roots forgotten

we emerge from trees
and soil, composted

through uncountable millenia.
We chirp until named, we spread

our wings in arrogant denial
a flurry of greed to clothe ourselves

in what we buy in fear of
our imminent demise. Missing

the call to shine, eminent
moment of this particular voice

in this astral alignment.
When we walk in peace with our death

unafraid, we open up the stranglehold
past, let go of the predetermined

future at last, the patterns blown
in our explosive joy.

Death isn’t lurking, looming, it’s coming
for you now in deep orgasmic waves thrumming:

Our only prerogative, let’s be clear,
is to be alive right now, right here.

Inspired by Prerogative, Explosive, Foreigner and Eminent.

Soundcloud recording here.

I See, Have Seen, Will See

To all the disappearing and the disappeared.

In these days right before he
becomes unhinged, medicated

beyond distractions, now the side
effects come crashing in

the decrepit hovel he drags along
sheer weight of dread and

fear and curdled anger
leaking in places long

forgotten, out of sight,
all of the life juice

that longs to sparkle
held, concealed

the doctors up the dosage
talk amputation

Would an electrician say
the only way to brighten

this dim room is rip it
from its foundations?

The ancestors call, childhood
trauma drumbeats. Agony.

All of this not hearing
deliberate and focused:

don’t look here
don’t feel

In Star Wars films he watches
the Deathstar destroy a planet

and only those who know The Force
pause and grieve

just a momentary stumble, gasp,
hold the heart before the fight

resumes. Resistance the imperative.
While rooted in our only earth,

drinking the poisoned air,
breathing the toxic water

right before he becomes unhinged,
madness descends and we swear

we are here, watching the unnourished
limbs–ours–disappear.

Inspired by: Hovel, Brighten, Unhinged, Sparkle and the need to bear witness.

Listen on soundcloud.

Pulled By The Past

He’s bursting to play in this brisk
autumn, so soon after we both succumbed

to the nasty bug from preschool.
Something inside cries, no! Seemingly stray,

a thought, how did they manage in olden
times? And just like that, I catch

the epigenetic trauma alert interlaced
and concealed. Keeping us alive.

The whole damn town reeling two
hundred years ago, this child’s

fifth great grandmother losing four
loved ones in the fall, weather

so similar it stirs our guts and
makes us jittery. We’ll bundle up,

declare this trauma broken up,
a new ruler of integration and

consciousness, choosing fresh air
and being present for ancestral warnings.
Inspired by: Jittery, Brisk, Broken and Ruler and the tragic life of Mary Glaze, my third great grandmother and the traumatic fall of 1838. First Solomon, her 43-year-old husband, died on September 26, followed four days later by her five-year-old daughter Sarah, and three days later her three-year-old daughter Elizabeth.  Did I mention Mary was in her last trimester of pregnancy?  On 28 October she gave birth to a son, Joseph, who died several weeks later.

The Way Through

We’re tuning in together across
the planet, deliberate, setting

aside our jaded lies. We’ve treaded
water, gasping and choking, trying

to heal ourselves in the poisoned
system, rising and falling alone.

Throbbing wounds from unexpected
splinters: we do not rush to kill

the pain. Instead we witness the
longing for death, trace its descent

through our lineage, the millennia
a tangled knot we cannot integrate.

Setting aside our individual triggered
drama to illuminate our collective

trauma. Each of us a fractal symptom.
Summon our skilled weavers. Illuminate

the net which binds us, blindly grasping
until we let go. The tapestry emerges

familiar and strange: our wounded
ancestors’ intricate scenes of carnage,

victim and perpetrator dances too horrifying
to love. Release the story. See the spin.

What breathes through us, what moves our
passionate living? Opening our vulnerable

hearts now, we sing what is. Resistance
chorus urges us to act. The future

clamors: repeat the unexamined past
fast. And still we sit, allowing

the tightly held terrors. Safe now
in our warm regard. In this relational

space we create entirely new
breathing what is in the way.

Inspired by: Descent, Jaded, Death and Splinter. and the Collective Trauma Summit going on this week (it’s free and it’s liberating!)