the color of my tears

the color of my tears
is the color of my eyes
some muted mix
of blue & green
that falls freely from my eyes

i get my brother’s birthday & his death day
mixed up in my head
he was born…
three weeks (& 45 years later)
he died
the last i spoke to him
was his birthday
so it is the last i remember of him
from the end of november
to almost christmas
it all blends together.
the end of him
& every time i see 12:19 on a clock
i forget that it is the birthday
of my children’s father
& only remember
it as my brother’s death
day.

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out with the old; in with the new

i’m trying not to be sad
today
i’m trying not to lose my mind
today
i feel music in my soul
today
not quite drowned out
by the screaming
crying
sometimes playing
sometimes fighting
children
my artist’s soul
& my mother’s heart
trying to live together
in my troubled
self.

october 26, 2016 is the date inside my old journal. the day i started it. today is the day i end it. there is one page left…but i have already spilled some angst onto it and now just have to illustrate my own pain.

the first page of the new journal, also, is already decorated with thoughts fallen from my head.

i love being productive. i love looking forward to a blank page. i love writing down my silly, sad, sentimental, and sordid epiphanies to ponder with pen & ink brush.

ha.
i am not a poet though.
i thought that today when i could not think of the word for what some of you might call my “poems.”
i am not a poet.
i just vomit emotion, often & as colorfully as possible.

loss…lost

i was breastfeeding
my second son
when i got the call
that my big brother
was dead
…plane crash
he crashed his plane
i’d just gotten his christmas newsletter
“keep christ
in christmas”
& his devastation
over the election of obama
to the presidency…
i had been making fun of him
to one of my liberal sisters
earlier that evening…
just around the time
his plane crashed into an ohio suburb

i usually start my pages with words & finish with a drawing. this one i drew first, and then the words came.
tomorrow is my big brother’s birthday. he would have been 54. he died 9 years ago.

when i was a girl

when i was a girl
i started writing books
books about girls on adventures
girls escaping from their evil mothers
(my father–a violent alcoholic
never appeared
in my stories…
i simply erased him.)
when i was a girl
i started taking long walks
walks through fields
& woods
just thinking
& feeling
the world around me
trying to make sense of it
when i was a girl
i would sit & stare
stare at the horizon
imagine breaching
the walls of the valley
surrounding me
escaping
the warm sun on my face
the massive clouds
eluding me
& i would wish i were
braver….

this is the second version of this i did. i don’t usually re-do these; they are quick sketches done in ink with no revisions. that’s me. that’s my technique.

however!
yuck. i did a representative picture of myself as a girl. bleah. it just was awful. i’m not even going to show it to you. in fact i burned it in my kitchen sink, saying a spell for my art to listen to the whispers in my head rather than depending on what my eyes see….

recently someone was nice enough to compare some of my journal pages to the pages of william blake. so i checked out some books from the library so i could see what he manifested. when my first drawing failed, i cracked open one of the books and looked at a few of his drawings. this second one was inspired by what i saw there–and the feelings of my heart rather than the what may or may not have been more true.

this is not what i looked like as a girl. i actually had bangs.
but, you know what? fuck bangs.
so this is what i looked like in my heart.
as i rise up over the mackinaw river valley
escaping into the clouds.

so cold…so dark

“so cold…so dark,” is what they others taught him to say.
and it’s funny to hear
a four year old loudly whispering
“so cold…so dark.”
it’s funny…in a creepy way
and we all laugh to hear him say it.
“so cold…so dark,” i whisper to myself.
it feels different coming out of my mouth.
like it dwells inside me
that cold
that dark
and i wonder
what kind of mother am i?

succubus

i’m so tired
of these feelings of desperation
these terrible
needs
for connection
what is real?
what is longing?
& what is just a big chasm
something intrinsically wrong
with me?
a hole in me
a black succubus of love
any warm body
will do.

disappearing boyfriends

when i was twenty-two, my therapist told me to stop dating.
she feared i had a sexual addiction.
in fact, i was (am?) addicted to relationships (which is one reason it took me ten thousands attempts to break up with dusty)
& being also afflicted with contrary personality disorder (i just made that up)
i shook off my therapist’s instructions & found some troubled
& troubling
boy to date
whom i wasn’t even really attracted to
(a re-occurring personality in my grab-bag of relationships)
anyhoo
long story short
when i realized i was being stupid
i called the boy up & told him i needed “to talk” to him
…& i never saw him again.
i mean
he disappeared before i could break up with him
strangely
or not
that is not the last time i had a boyfriend vanish before i could break up with him….

okay–so while i was doing the illustration/self-portrait/comic for this, i messed up my drawing & had to cover it up and then when i was doing background color–my ink smeared??? but…i think i salvaged it.
my ink is not supposed to smear. bad ink.

so it looks like this might be the direction this whole experiment turns to. a comic. an illustrated journal/memoir.
that would be kinda cool.
let’s see what other noteworthy memories i can dredge up.