fallen VII

when i noted that
my children
were
the spawn of satan
i assumed
that if was their
father
who was the
devil
on retrospect
i should have realized
he was too
lazy
unmotivated
& lacking in follow through
to be a king
of the underworld
i, however,
am a dedicated
loving
nurturing
queen of the damned

i’m sure y’all aren’t surprised i was happy to find yet another way to use the madonna & child symbolism.

as i was illustrating this, i was being tormented by my minions. while climbing all over me, three out of four of them asked me who was in the picture (the oldest one claimed he knew better than to ask me.)
i answered each of them, “it’s you & me.”
the two boys acted upset by my drawing horns on the heads.
my daughter did not seem fazed at all. of course, she has a 666 in her social security number & is left handed…. (seriously)
i mean, this devil stuff. it’s a woman’s job. attention to detail. multi-tasking. making sure the right people suffer. women’s work.

i asked my oldest son what he would think if he found out i was the devil. he said he wouldn’t be surprised.
and when i greeted iggy with, “greetings spawn of the devil.” he replied, “it takes one to know one.”

my kids are awesome. i love my lovely spawn.

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freckles

as the sun rises
i wake up
to find poppy & the puppy
already awake
as the chores wait
i lay in bed & listen
to these early morning musings
by poppy
as he imagines that the puppy
has feet
like a person
insists
really
that he had made a potion
to give people feet
to puppies
i love the bedtime & early morning
musings
of these little people
who enchant
my life.

just messing about. this reminded me of a poem i wrote about iggy when he was four and as we were cuddling & reading bedtime stories he told me he wanted to eat a live pigeon .
if i could just do all my momming while laying about in bed.

my poem for iggy:

pirates in disguise
“they’re made from recycled money,” says the woman
handing out pencils at the bank.
“recycled money,” i repeat.
“that’s cool,” i tell him.
“noooo,” he insists. “recycled bunnies.
she said ‘bunnies,’
‘cause the bones are hard like pencils.”
when it is bedtime he tells me he wants to eat a chicken
boil off the feathers and eat it.
i remind him that he has eaten a chicken.
“oh,” he says. “i mean a seagull.
i want to eat a live seagull.”
he asks me to dye his mohawk purple.
he asks me to sharpen it when the hair on his head grows too long.
he changes his clothes many times a day
just like he changes his mood.
he is fierce & he is powerful.
only four years old;
he is mighty & the world belongs to him.
i know he is mine because i see
the stubborn
feisty
rebellious
warm & fuzzy
miracle that he is.
we cuddle together & tell each other secrets
like
i love him all the way to the moon & back
& he loves me for all the sharks in the ocean
& sometimes i feel halloween is the only time we show who we are
every other day
we are pirates in disguise.

itchy fingers

no pages written
no pictures drawn
looking at other people’s art
& being
down
on
me
wondering
when i will get it right
when i will
win the race
trying to find my way
and feeling like
i’m going in circles
today is a new day
but
in all fairness
so was
yesterday.

just me. fucking around with lines & colors & concept after looking enviously at the art of other artists on instagram.
i looked through five journals today, trying to figure out which of my self-portraits i like the best to do a final draft of. that is a lot of me to look at. and although–yay–i like a great number of my self-portraits, i suppose i am going to have to narrow it down. maybe i will try to get some audience participation 
who wants to pick self-portraits for me?
i also worked to edit my short story, “together, tangled” while sharing my laptop with three minions who think they should all come first. c’mon kid, is daniel tiger more important than my becoming a successful writer? 
i guess that depends.
eventually, i got tired of the editing & pulled out my journal to see what would happen if i put pen to paper.
but even in my goofing off, i am working towards being a better artist, a better writer. 
i feel very grateful that the things i love to do are the things that i love to do. 

treasure hunting

so it turns out that if you spend thirty-six years writing without locating a publisher who will publish you & then just saying “fuck it” and squirreling all your writings away, you create a bit of a situation. 
i just went through some actual folders (not virtual ones) to find these gems from the early 90s when i was still using a typewriter because, fuck it, i am….(wait, what’s the opposite of cutting-edge?)
retro?
archaic? 
luddititious?
a dinosaur?
(if i am a dinosaur i want to be a velociraptor.)
wait–you know what–i am going to circle back & say i am cutting edge. i was years ahead of the hipster typewriter trend. i am a goddamned trendsetter. 

typewriters are cool.

so, in addition to my working on creating a book from select pages of my art journal self-portrait series, i am also working on putting together a collection of short stories. 
short stories that i wrote, and then left to age.
i think they are well-aged at this point, and ready for harvest.
or bottling? 
how would that metaphor work?

as you can see from this incoherent post, i am using all of my brain power for editing short stories & art journals while juggling four screaming minions. 

meanwhile…i am almost almost so close to being done with the postcard commission & the portrait commission.
so close!

too many fish in the sea

the minions are away so i can spread out
& take over
& work on all those projects i have been 
waiting 
to do.
someone commissioned some quixotic mama under the sea cards
my biggest problem?
picking the sea creatures to paint.
so many awesome sea creatures!
she only asked for 10 cards but i was all
“better do more…just in case”
and because i had too many fish 
i wanted to paint.
also! 
i am working on painting a portrait other than my own!
what? 
really. 
i was scared about it at first…as if my brain would not be able to
process
a face other than mine.
turns out, i am so enjoying it.
new lines
new shadows
new demons.

and if that were not enough.
i made a list of my top priorities right now.

that is just about as organized as i get. 
so exciting!
i am hoping i can get a rhythm going that i can maintain
even after the return of the minions…
without losing sight of my 
commitment to my kids.
time to don the tiara & grab my golden lasso & get to work.

blue me

it’s when
you’re feeling the most
self-destructive
that you are least
able to
embrace
self-care
self-love
self
acceptance
thrown under the bus
when you need them
most
instead
you burn bridges
alienate friends
hide under a rock 
avoiding your yoga guru
your morning routine
your
brisk
walk 
in fresh air
while saying fuck
fucking mindfulness
in the ass
while pouring another
drink 
and re-living every horror
every 
moment
of pain
or better yet
burying it all deep under
an avalanche
of 
forced smiles & 
no, really, 
look how good i’m doing.

this is one where i wrote down the rough thought & then tried (tried!) to flush it our while transcribing it.
also, i never wear high collared shirts because apparently they make me look like this. 

in other news…

i have a 22 year old “fan” over on tumblr who is flirting with me, & it is making me oh so uncomfortable. i wonder how men who date much younger women do it. i mean, i guess they just don’t care that there is a huge gap in what you know, what you’ve experienced, how much you are actually going to get of what i say….
bleah.
then my ex-husband (dusty fucker) texts me to ask if i am pregnant because we had “unprotected sex” a month ago. conveniently forgetting that i got an IUD after poppy was born.
or, rather, a year & a half after poppy was born–having refrained from sex for all that time because he was being a fucking asshole.
but, then, when i had the lapse of judgement of reuniting with dusty, under the condition that he be in a monogamous relationship with me, i agreed to get an IUD to prevent any further minions appearing. again, with the condition that he be monogamous. 
well, shocker. he lied to me, & i got an IUD while he continued to have sex with other people.
strange that he would forget. 

just so you know, the sex a month ago was a one time thing to get it out of my system–and it totally worked. 

i have been journaling about confidence and about the undeniable fact that–though i am lonely–i am choosing to be alone. so you have that to look forward to once i get around to doing the illustrations.

yee-ha

without hope

i don’t know
what i could possibly
be hoping 
for
what would even cure
this
thick
bleak
sludge
i call my soul
what could ever change
my hopeless situation
i mean
it’s
hope
less
that is
without hope
that one thing
pandora supposedly kept
from escaping
her box
hope
hope is gone
because really
i’m pretty sure
it was never there
to begin with.

this is from the other day when i was in a deep dark place, deciding that i should just do away with hope because what had hope done for me lately?
in case you’re wondering
or conference calling me with the suicide hotline
i am feeling less bleak today. 
i mean, if i think too hard, i could probably recall my reasons for eighty-sixing hope. however, i am going to try to float a bit above that abyss for now…until i trip & fall into it again.
until then….

ps. it doesn’t make sense. if pandora opened the box & let loose all the horrible things onto humankind…but slammed it shut before hope could escape, wouldn’t that mean hope was locked away from us? or that the awful things flew away from us? one or the other? why was hope in there with all the horrors anyway? wouldn’t it be kept in a box with love & kindness? or why keep hope in a box at all. let the little fucker run free.
i mean
i get it–but it doesn’t make sense.

credit to arthur rackham whose depiction of pandora i borrowed  heavily from.

courting death

self soothing
is thinking about 
the blade against my skin
self soothing
is a match 
to burn it all to the ground
self soothing 
are the words
rolling around 
in my rotten brain
no one has ever loved you
anyway
self soothing
is a free fall 
away from my nightmares
and into a comforting
emptiness
love
love is the easy answer
if by easy 
you mean
impossible
death
makes more sense
no longer fantasizing about love
saving me
only 
hoping
for
death.

death. the ultimate distraction. no. i don’t really want to die. most the time i plan on living forever. but some days there is something deep & dark inside me. an overwhelming lack of hope. 
it has a lot to do with escape. that’s what the thoughts of death are. i mean, when i was in the midst of it, i thought, what if i didn’t die–but just disappeared?
it was all the same to me. well. actually disappearing was more desirable than death.
i am sure other mothers feel this way. i am sure none of us like to talk about it. i talk about it because i have to.
if i keep things inside, it only gets worse. 
squeeze it until it bleeds…& then it can get better.

i am not sure how i feel about this illustration/self-portrait. i feel like i am…too sexy? is death sexy? i wasn’t going for sexy. i’m not sure it is even sexy. trust me, i do not feel sexy. 
i do like the illustration…it feels comic-booky to me. i just feel like a fraud for having drawn/painted it.
don’t ask me why. 
i don’t fucking know.

seven hundred years

sometimes i feel 
like i have been alive
for seven hundred years
i barely
remember 
yesterday
so for all i know
i’ve been alive
forever
&
i wonder
if i’ll ever look back
on these days
of struggle
of isolation
from the comfort
of a soul mate’s 
embrace
look back
in wonder
& awe
how did i ever survive
such desolate
times
to feel peace 
in my heart
while remembering
a time when peace
was a fantasy.

this, and a few more pages to come, were written yesterday when i was feeling especially hopeless & suicidal. good times…. being a single mom with next to no support system. i need to tell y’all, do not try this at home.

strangely, once i accepted that there was nothing to hope for, i felt a bit calmer. that’s me. finding comfort in the concept that i will never find comfort. 

this page does not have my standard issue self-portrait…unless you consider that that is my soul flying under the full moon. 
owls symbolize being able to see what others cannot. i identify with the owl, though i assume everyone else can see what i see. 
which, i guess, is not the case.
so!
i make art.

i may have gotten a little carried away. i think i painted my words out.

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