without feathers

without feathers
i watch the snow fall
around me
“i love the snow,”
i say quietly
and try to keep from
without feathers
i battle the demons
inherited from my
relationships taking
wrong turns
down one-way streets
“i want to live,”
i try to convince myself
i feel in my heart
intense hope
and bottomless
and i continue my journey

to keep my heart safe from dusty, i find i have to remember things i would rather forget.
some of you were with me during the really really awful bad terrible fucked-up hello kitty catastrophe.
you know, when dusty started dating a 30 year old in a hello kitty backpack while he was living with me?
how she would come to our apartment & hide in the bushes & wait for him? how she would write graffiti about the two of them on the bike paths around where we lived?
how she gave him a phone so they could “sext” each other?
how he would sneak off to see her & leave me alone pregnant…with a newborn…and his three other children?
how i would happen across the two of them…how i developed an anxiety whenever i left the house that i would see them somewhere, together?
how i would constantly find fucked-up little gifts & notes from her to him on our front step or hanging from the trees around our home?
how he refused to leave madison with me & the kids because he wanted to stay near her?


this is what i have to replay in my head.
the cold way he would look at me when i happened upon them somewhere near our house, embraced.
the way he shoved me when i tried to find out what was going on between them & behind my back.
sitting alone in a courtroom waiting to find out what would happen to me for having a public & profane breakdown.
finding out, too late, from people i thought were friends that this had been going on when i was being told it was not.

this is what i am trying to recover from. among other things. meanwhile, dusty keeps trying to creep back in. still blaming me & telling me what a cold heart i have for not loving him.

i’m tired, y’all.
i’m tired of doing everything alone as he watches & complains that he isn’t being included when i would love to include him–but instead feel it necessary to protect myself from him. i never wanted to do this alone. every day as i struggle to take care of four kids & homestead & have time to myself to do art & to try to keep from losing my mind but losing my mind because i never seem to get time to re-charge because there is always something that needs doing…someone who needs me….


i really like this self-portrait.
i think i should take the ones i feel strongest about and do them on a good watercolor paper. this one…i really like it.

ps. so i worked on this last night while watching the netflix original movie a futile & stupid gesture based on the life of doug kenney (who founded national lampoon)…. i totally recommend it. it made me both laugh & sob–which is my criteria for a good story. it also made me think that maybe it is a good thing that i am largely unrecognized for my art, etc. i mean, these depressed & damaged people who make it big & realize that it fixes nothing & end up killing themselves because they still feel like failures….

so today i am thankful that i have never been successful enough to feel like an utter failure.


this hole in me

part of me is missing
maybe you know
where it is?
every morning
i wake up
it’s another day
that it is
another day
another day
another night
i go to bed
knowing that my morning
my next day
will bring more of the same
& i want to scream
i do scream
i cry
part of me is missing
you know where
it is?
it is you?
i read something
that said grief
is just
trapped in the corners
of your eyes….
i don’t know what to do
with all this grief
part of me
is missing
& i’m oh so tired
of looking…
but if i stop…
if i stop
will i drown in
all this

i like this illustration. i’m not sure i captured in my words what i feel…but i think i captured it in my drawing.

i think i am still recovering from the visits of my mom & my ex-husband. two people who put the knife in and twist it. both are relationships that i desperately want to be different. i know i could be a more complete person…
if my mother had mothered me
if my ex-husband had been able to love me
if neither of them had emotionally abandoned me
& betrayed me….

i desperately long to heal that wound. that emptiness.

but maybe i have turned to stone.
to clay.
to something that barely resembles the person
i could have been.

that’s not me

the most i have is
what i already
i’m empty now.

it’s not me…but it is me. it’s not a self-portrait…but it’s still me. i was drawing this & writing this while having a fight with dusty. one of those spiral fights that i try to leave & then get sucked back in & we just go around & around.

i really enjoyed drawing her and kept catching myself smiling (i do the expression as i draw it–i’m one of those people.) then i worried dusty would freak out because i was smiling to myself while fighting with him.

i never got a chance to recover from my parents’ visit because as soon as they were gone, dusty went from being mr. charming & helpful to being mr. self-fulfilling prophecy. he likes to anticipate that i am going to reject him and then do everything in his power to get me to reject him. and then he gets pissed off & self-righteous about it.


so i packed him in a truck & shipped him back to wisconsin.

maybe now i can recover?

nope…now the minions are on full blast needy.


repulsed by romance

she is the reason
i divorce so easily
she is the reason
i fear relationships
they are the reason
it is the two together
i don’t want to end up trapped
you see
trapped in a marriage
to a man
like my father
losing my mind
so i run
live in fear
craving a connection
replulsed by romance.

this self-portrait pretty much captures how i feel right now.
like there is not much of me left.
a demon me with a halo of stars.
little bits of me.
flying away in the wind.

so dusty is down here to help me. and he has been so much help because as it turns out, i can barely deal with being in the same room with my parents. i am constantly nauseated and crawling out of my skin and looking for a place to hide.

so dusty was a life-saver…. except. i dunno. i was being nice to him–affectionate–trying to make sure he was surviving okay. doing for him what i would want done for me.
but i guess that was the wrong thing to do?
because then he got pissed off at me for sending mixed messages?
yelled at me and accused me of hurting him.
what the what?
so now even more of me has shut down.
i feel like i am barely functional.

my parents are here–they started my destruction.
dusty is here–he finished me off.

all my best destroyers in one house for the holidays.

who am i ?

the only thing
i’m good at sharing
is my pain

…but when i went to write “pain”
i almost wrote “heart”
i started to write “heart”

i am the first to underestimate me

who am i?
who do i want to be?
what if i’m not so godawful as i think
i am?
what if i am already
the person i want to be?
what would my reality be if
i am not
an asshole?

seriously. i started out this journal page with the idea of all that i am good at sharing is my pain.
but instead of writing pain…i started writing heart.
and this totally fucked with my head.

like something i posted on facebook earlier this week.
the more i find out about other people
the more i realize…i’m not really that bad.
i’m not the crap-ass i think i am.

so…well…i guess this means i’m having an identity crisis for christmas.

maybe this will be a good holiday after all….


the pain
that special pain
of losing someone
& for no good reason
everything does not happen
for a fucking reason
it does not
there are so many
senseless happenings
in this goddamned
unless pain is it’s own
would be just

this time of year is just one big clusterfuck of bad memories
& bad feelings.
i have this fucking dark cloud hanging over me. every move is like i am underwater. just trying to tie my fucking shoes or something.
& it feels impossible
& i hate myself
for not being able to pull it together.

how it begins

i am the sad one
the broken-hearted
i am the one
who feels
my pain is invisible
i am the one
who feels
too much
…but when the little voices
“don’t give up”
i listen
i may be sad
& broken-hearted
…but i don’t
give up.

so if i were to start an art journal memoir…this would be the first page.