playing with demons

invoking one demon
to do battle
‘gainst another
inviting a demon in
to drive another
out
it’s a tricky thing
to do
& is oddly
entertaining
appealing
to see them tear
at each other
blood & gristle
claw & horn
pain that would
otherwise
be yours
your demons share
with one another
but…
when the smoke has cleared
you are still left
with one more demon
to banish.

aw crap. i called dusty to help. he came, & he helped. and my mom doted on him and said i never should have divorced him and she praised him while she defiled me. and he never stood up for me. he never confronted her until she spoke badly of him? of the minions? until he was grumpy & she was an inconvenience?

then they clashed. and battled. and i should not have enjoyed it…but i did.

in 2010, when i divorced him, my mom took him aside and told him, “it’s not your fault. she is difficult to live with” and he didn’t say anything. this past visit, there were multiple days of her talking about what an awful daughter i am.
and he said nothing.

so, yeah, a sad, sick part of me liked watching them scream at each other.

but now my parents are gone. we are left with no common enemy…just each other. and he has already projected that i am rejecting him.
now i am walking on eggshells not around my volatile parents but around my volatile ex-husband.

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heavy

when someone close to you
dies
it becomes part of your description
she has brown hair
a nice smile
and her brother is dead

birthdays are the hardest
his last one
I didn’t know
it was the last
his voice sad on the telephone
my pledge to keep in touch
this time

we live in a world
where I can obsessively search for
intimate details of his death
available in short video
burning plane
gray matter splattered on a playground
his last words, “oh, fuck.”

notorious IT guy for the other side
the Forrest Gump of stolen elections
everything reminds me
of him
the sound of a single engine plane
sad songs on the radio
politics, Christmastime, and charismatic men

I drink Irish whiskey this time of year
but it was Scotch at his wake
four years now
four years since the last election
four years since the plane crash
a conspiracy theorist’s wet dream
murder Republican style

when someone close to you
dies
do you let it redefine you?
hello, I’m Connell
a mama, a student, an artist
let me tell you
about my dead brother

(written in 2012)

unreasonable

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

this time of year is just one big clusterfuck of bad memories
& bad feelings.
shitballs.
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.

just kidding

people can’t tell the difference
(or maybe they don’t want to)
between my
laughing
& my crying
my being funny
& my being
tragic
but can i blame them?
when i so often
cover my pain
with jokes?

i guess
for everyone
it’s easier to
laugh
than to
cry.

sad aloneness

sadness
aloneness
& i wonder how many times
in how many ways
i can say
the same thing
& not be heard?
the comfort
of my invisibility
suffocates me
i want out
i. want. out.
can you hear
me?
please
get me out
of
my own head
before
i decide
i never
want to leave.

i think maybe this project has reached a conclusion…or maybe it will go on forever.
maybe i will go on forever
comforting myself with my own suffocating sadness

or maybe i will start an illustrated memoir.
i should really start an illustrated memoir.

okay.
so…i need an agent & a cheerleader.
someone who can tolerate large doses of bitter animosity & self-pity.
also, must enjoy loud children.

eye pockets

eye pockets
are one of my very most favorite
of facial features
i love them so much
that i used to pump up the muscles under my eyes
hoping that the bulge
would somehow add contour
to my own face
add some character
to my “girl next door” blah
except
when people asked
i told them
that i was working on building up my under-eye muscle
so that one day
i would be able to close my eyes
from the bottom up
like a frog

this is one of those random things about me. something i think is hilarious…but that is probably just me.
i thought of it because i have been watching terriers on netflix and michael raymond-james has the yummiest eye pockets i have seen in a long time.
i want to marry his eye pockets.

granted…i am lonely as fuck…but he is hot.

and i am lonely as fuck.

sad & lonely & thinking about eye pockets.

self-portrait on a tuesday morning

the only time
the only time my parents
showed interest in me
paid attention to me
put me in their spotlight
was when they were
desperately
trying to dissuade me from being a writer….
just imagine
what would have happened
if they had put that same energy
into supporting
into nurturing
into being proud of their creative daughter
building her passion
giving it wings
rather than
pissing on it

ug. this is what i spent last night crying about. stupid, huh? i know i’m not supposed to dwell in the past–the what-ifs…because i need to just accept that that is what it was and move on…
but sometimes it really sucks…
and i can’t help just imagining if i had had supportive & nurturing parents…if i had married a supportive & nurturing man….

so the summer i turned seventeen, my parents sent me away to camp.
this might not sound odd–unless you knew my parents. there were six of us kids and they hated spending money on us. or, at least, it seemed that way to me. none of us ever went to camp. for the money reason–and also because we were free summer labor for my dad. so it was totally weird that they sent me to camp.
i thought about it last night.
this was eons before the internet–how did they even know about the camp?
how did they find it?
i must have told them i had an interest in forestry.
so they went through all the trouble and research to find a forestry camp to send me to?
all because i wanted to be a writer…i was a writer. i had even won a national award (2nd place) for writing when i was thirteen. i had written three books at this point in my life–sure they probably sucked–but i was writing books when i was just a kid. i was producing substantial work.
but they sent me to forestry camp because being a writer was…was what? did it embarrass them? were they afraid for my future?
because thanks to their lack of support and encouragement, i have spent most of my life working menial jobs, wanting to be a writer, but having no confidence in myself….

when i finally got myself into a creative writing program in 2014, 44 and a mother of four, my professor told me i should go for an MFA due to my talent & skill with writing. she thought i had promise.
of course, i had to quit school and move away because my ex (mr. school is a waste of time) husband was being abusive and sabotaging my very existence…. yay.

so i’m wallowing a bit today.
thinking of running away from home.
mentally packing my bags & my goats and wondering if i could just take the minions and disappear from my own life….

tueday morning…another day to survive….