nesting (day 17)

day seventeen at my shambles
of a nest
&
i see his fabulous nest
& though i do not think of him
as a potential mate
i look at him
preening
in front of his
fabulous nest
& think
hmmmm…
maybe?
& for the first time ever
i understand those women
who choose mates
by their fancy cars
& their fancy houses…
but
still
at the end of the day
i fly home
to my dilapidated nest
because
it is mine
it is home.

true story. i love my house. maybe i love it most of all because it is mine. but i do love madness manor and even enjoy looking at my gutted walls & imagining what will happen there.

i’ve been reading up on salvaged homes. i love the idea of finding materials that need a home rather than buying materials that are designed for mass production.
my home will one day be it’s own work of art.

shits & giggles

little victories today
folding laundry
washed
at the old house
& travelled
to the new
little victories
mopping the mud
off of the bathroom floor
mud left by a flood
three
years
ago
mud from rivers & hills
mud that has lived in this house
longer
than i have
& with modest
success
driftless mud
mopped up
for shits & giggles
not out of any sense
of duty
it’s my bathroom
i wanted to see what it would
look like
sans mud.

i keep looking at all the things i need to do (boxes piled & still packed; walls with screws & nails that need removal/repair; a door that needs hung so one can poop in peace; etc.) and just kinda shrug. meh. i’ll get to it eventually. i’m hanging around this place for awhile. i can take my time figuring things out.
it’s nice not to rush. not to freak out. not to listen to the anxiety telling me i better get it done or else.

so in 2018, one of those freak storms happened that dumped tons of water in a short amount of time. as a result, three? dams in the driftless broke and water filled the little town i now call home. the water filled the basement of this house & went up to the third step as it creeped toward the second floor. walls, cabinets, appliances, and carpeting was destroyed & ripped from the house three years before i met it.
i like to think of it as a baptism for my house. a beginning, not an ending.
i lived in illinois at the time.
in the flatlands.
some think i’m crazy for choosing to move to a valley where one is warned not to put anything they care about in the basement.
but i like valleys. i feel safer there. more at peace.
why does someone from the flatlands of illinois crave the lush intimacy of a valley? well, durp, why wouldn’t they? i have seen enough plains & cornfields. i have had enough big sky & unstoppable winds.

today the kids & i played in a beautiful creek & watched the shadows of the clouds roll over the hills and i said to them, “aren’t we lucky! we live here!”

day seven

day seven at madness manor
sexy…so not sexy
my house is sexy
not i
forgive me my sins
my trespasses
i would better serve you
if i were
sexy
fuck.
i’m lonely
…if i buy it
build it
will he come?
my handy
man
yes?
to my sexy
house.

so i started being a “free-aholic” in the spirit of “freegans” …in that i am only drinking when the alcohol is free. so i’ve been mostly sober lately.
however
my ex husband brought me a six pack of strong beer when he came to take the minions.
this poem is the result of drinking two of those too closely together.
yikes.
but i do feel very lonely. i look at myself, alone, and i feel such a profound pain. i think maybe my pain can be heard. like a siren’s song?
ah. a journal page for another day.

(this was written on day seven, but posted on day 12)

if i should fall down

yesterday i paid cash
for a house
an entire house
well, almost…
& today
i am giddy as fuck
the house is mine
if it should fall down
i will put it back up again
for every damage done to it
i will make repairs
because
the house is mine
after years of feeling lost
today, at least,
i feel as if i have found
my way
home.

i wrote this almost ten days ago & inked it a day or so after that…but i have not posted it because i was feeling sick of my art. that happens. yesterday i took another look at it & decided to post it.
also
i haven’t gotten much art done as my mind is all wrapped up in this house. thinking about solar power…thinking about rocket mass heating…thinking about a traditional farmhouse style of kitchen…thinking about replacing walls with shelves…tackling the yard gone wild…counting the trees & celebrating them…finding kindred spirits to put their energy into this massive project….
it can totally preoccupy a person.
but!
i do want to keep working on my art & my writing. so i am catching up on journal pages, working on my novel, and thinking about future projects that don’t require heavy lifting….

sky goddess

i’m entering in to
a long term
relationship
with a structure
all relationships
terrify me
but also fill me
with an
intoxicating bliss…
anything could happen
me & my house
two damaged
soul mates
looking to be
whole.

the house sale went smoothly, & i was able to buy a house with a cashier’s check (thanks dead mom & dead dad.) the price was super low…one step above foreclosure. i felt sad for the woman who had to sell it, but she seemed at peace with it.
i’m super excited…giddy…a little numb….
i’m hoping i don’t crash again. new house. new book. an earth day art show this weekend. things going a little too smoothly.

potential

potential
a deep pool
a vast meadow
sneak peek
behind
the veil
what could be
so seductive
& alluring
potential
a romance
i cannot
resist.

as i write & schedule this post, it is a couple of days before the closing on my house. but as it posts, i am at the title company handing over the largest check i have ever written to make this house my own.
the house is chock full of potential…just like me!
i am very excited about this new adventure…when i’m not having back to back panic attacks.

here is what my house looks like now:

and here is a photo i just found on google maps that shows what it looked like before it was damaged & abandoned:

neurotic or instinct

am i following my dreams
or sabotaging myself….
is it intuition
or an anxiety attack
is this what i want
or am i just
living my life
out of spite.

i am in the process of buying a brick two story built in 1900. this house was in a devastating flood in 2018 when a dam broke here in the driftless region of wisconsin. consequently, the heating system, the electrical, & the water heater were wiped out. additionally, there was a lot of damage done to the first floor. walls & cabinets were damaged and removed leaving a blank slate for me to create from.
i kinda jumped on the house without much second thought due to the fact that i could buy it for the money i inherited when my folks died. i wanted to find an investment for the money before it was nickeled & dimed away. in no other scenario could i have a brick two story house. banks don’t want to loan me money because of my lack of income…but i can slowly work on the house and bring it back to life as i can afford to while also living there with no mortgage to pay.
but this whole happening has me suffering from panic attack after panic attack as i get unsolicited advice from way too many people…one being an older sister who is doom & glooming me into believing the house is going to fall down on top of me.
i had it inspected, & i trusted the inspection. i have instincts telling me it is a good move. i have friends who totally think it is a good move, including one who works in building salvage.
do i trust me?
do i trust me?
i have been turning everything over in my head. over & over & over.
no, most people would not choose to do this…but i am excited & want to learn about solar as well as wood-burning resources as well as cabinet building. i want to be unconventional & low-impact & turn this house into something awesome. i live in an area of the country ripe with amish craftsmen, artists, and do-it-yourselfers. i think i am in good company & am ready to make new friends….
yet still terror sneaks in…& then i have to talk myself down again.
but i am able to talk myself down.
remember that summer i lived on a bus with no running water for three months? i can totally do this, right?
(or am i setting myself up for disaster???)

earth day art

in between a sister have a psychotic break on my couch
waiting for the proof of my book to show up
(both excited & terrified)
& impulsively buying a house
that is at least as damaged as me…
i am working on art for an earth day exhibit
i have too many pieces already,
but it is so calming to thumb through my journals
and creating new pieces from old ones.

by the way
any piece you see here is totally for sale…
let’s say $60 for the 9X12 & $75 for the 12X16
(the story & goddess of creation)

update: the song, goddess of creation, & the story have all been spoken for

trust II

i was never taught
to believe in me
i was never taught
to have faith in myself
to trust
that i could
make the right decision
follow that right path…
funny thing
in all my efforts to follow
that path
i had forgotten that learned lack
of faith
that distrust in my own instinct…
but even forgotten
it popped up into my life
to fuck me
all over again.

so! recently i started the process of buying a house. it was in a flood here in the driftless when a dam broke in 2018. the boiler, hot water heater, & electrical system as well as walls & cabinets and most of the kitchen were destroyed in the flood–followed by the owner abandoning the property.

so, you know, deeply damaged, of course i fell in love with this two story, circa 1900 brick house. in all the damage i saw how i could make the house my own.

plus i am in a position to buy it outright.

my heart said, “yes yes yes!” but then the unsolicited advice from family & acquaintances started picking away at my poor (already compromised) brain.

that’s when i remembered my parents telling me “it’s a nice hobby, but what are you really going to do?” when i was a twelve year old artist/writer who had already won contests and just needed that support to believe in myself…which left me wondering for the next 36 years until i finally said, “no. seriously. i want to be an artist & a writer.”
fuck.
how do you learn to believe in yourself when taught not to believe in yourself?

i feel this house & i are meant to be…but i am struggling with believing in myself…which totally sucks.

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