separate in a shared space again

So it has been a while. Some things don’t get any easier. Some things get better with time. Perspective is all. Trouble is, sometimes you’ve got to go somewhere far, far away to get it.

Woke up in my own bed again this morning, smiling. It was not the blissful blacked out sleep-of-the-dead I had in the hotel room bed over the weekend, waking like a stunned mullet amidst skyscrapers, remembering almost nothing at all.

I think autumn is coming. Everything feels different, but it’s not just the weather. It must be the season for merciless mouse slaughter. We ate cheerios for dinner.

Whatever you have in front of you is what you make it. Funny how we grow into the cliches. They are comfortable and true. But give me an aphorism over an aneurysm any day.

Laughter is good, and so is the kind of love that gets bigger and bigger as time goes on.

Today I wondered if it was normal for grown ups to have the impulse to just up and run away, just like we did back then (whether or not we acted on the urge). And you know what, I think it is completely normal.

I have a place I think about running away to, and I take my buddy with me. It’s like the desert island thing. I have a picture of it in my head. It is a real place. But for some reason I can’t get there. All the barriers are mental, in all senses of the word.

Anyway, this wasn’t what I was going to write about. In my absence the blog traffic spiked dramatically and it didn’t even have anything to do with mentions of s*x as I had naively anticipated. In my absence the cats got on with their sadistic business and the bills kept coming in the mail.

I made the thing above partly in the Auckland Koru lounge yesterday (the words came from a magazine there, and I happened to have pens on me) and partly the other night when I took a photo of a light in the Town Hall. And tonight I muddled them all together into this. Bungling Photoshop/wrangling with borrowed words is the perfect Monday night distraction. And now I might go right ahead and watch some TV.

make it okay, II

Part 2 of the dredged up make it okay files. Not exactly what you’d call immensely readable, layout wise.

At times like these a bit of copy/paste comes works a treat. The non-squinty version bunged below:

my eyes are bright with tears & runway lights
I was a child bride, the little fish you should have thrown back. 
But I begged you to keep me. So you watched over me like an old sage, 
saw my hips fill out, my eyes bulge at the slippery oyster that was the world.
I adored you; you taught me everything I knew. You are wise & beautiful 
like an ancient axolotl. 
Your skin has worn more days than I could ever imagine. 
You showed me a person I could become, pointed her out & said: 
   the world is but a succession of tomorrows. 
   this could be you. 
   do you like the look of her?
    & I said yes, yes. I liked the look of her, 
    this unformed mannequin 
    giddy with potential’s aphrodisiac.
I am old now. Well, older. Those were heady days. 
After the day of the runway lights, we never met again. I saw your name 
on the divorce papers. Our lawyers met over boozy lunches 
& orchestrated our undoing. Our hearts filled with red tape.
I was a slip of a thing, your protégée. You saw something in me. 
I was unschooled in the ways of love & you were patient with me. 
I grew hungry for your gaze. & somewhere in it all I became a woman.
I lay beside you every night & thanked the Lord for the gift 
of your gnarled body.
I loved every one of your deformities, touched upon your sores lightly. 
I blossomed. 
You took me to the end of the pier & made me look at the ocean.
You said:  it is time.
   I do not have the right to keep you. 
   the future is bright; it beckons you.
 This was news to me. We passed through the fairground. I threw balls 
  into the stunned open mouths of painted clowns & did my best 
  to understand your meaning. I won a stuffed donkey 
  & gave it your name.
 My tears could have filled many thimbles; they were the ocean in miniature.

A post, pre bedtime

 lichen and flamingoes 

You know when you are so tired your eyes itch and no steady stream of thinking comes. And sleep becomes academic although desirable, and also something a little bit fearful. What if it never comes again? (For example.)

This is a photo, or two photos, of lichen (top) and an aerial view of flamingoes from way, way up high (bottom). They go well together, I think.

Since I last wrote Si fell through the floorboards. I helped jumpstart a car for the first time in my life. I gave in to work anxiety and felt sullied and disappointed with myself because of it. I woke super early and listened to repeated radio stories about the sad plight of the NZ scallop in scallop season. Something about the fine layers of silt that get stirred up and bury the scallops as they settle. Also their numbers are dwindling, because apparently back in the day everyone just took a few months off and chanced their arms in the deep old sea to dredge them up with not a care in the world.

I have sat in a lot of rooms with a lot of people, nodding and sometimes scribbling, and now I am drinking restful tea with eyes that need toothpicks to stay open.

I have seen what just might be fate in full swing, and have seen someone attribute a favourable outcome to their prayers being answered. And I liked it, although I am not entirely convinced.

I have seen what it is like to be old and alone and bordering on incapacitated and – selfishly – for now – I am pleased that I am none of these things. Because at the end of the day I can’t not relate the situation back to myself (even though I am peripheral to it, at best, or more likely completely irrelevant but a small part of the so-called ripple effect), being, as I am, the very centre of my own universe.

Good night.

the correlation between lucidity & altitude

How the world looks when things are at their clearest
How the world looks when things are at their clearest
It’s the best thing about planes. The sheer ear-popping clarity that smacks you in the face (or rattles in your head like intense cabin pressure) out of nowhere. All it takes is a little elevation. Or distance.
A typical scenario could be:
You’re befuddled on the tarmac,  harangued by the spirally inner monologue you’ve been trying to train yourself out of for years.
Your handbag is an abyss and you are not prepared for wherever you are going.
You should be filled with a sense of pleasant anticipation but all you get is a soulsucking dread.
You won $2 on a Instant Kiwi while killing time, but got a $40 parking ticket for trying to save time on your way to the airport.
You take it out on your travelling companion (although you can’t be at all specific about what it is, exactly), and still he cups his hand over yours, instinctively, during a treacherous take-off. And yet, despite these small kindnesses, still you are lukewarm at best (and even that is an effort).
And then it happens, somewhere above the clouds. The world is pure and clear and you are magnanimous and insightful. Everything is future-bound – in a good way. Things make sense. You are potent and the human version of godlike. You are loving and sweet.
And all that has changed is your distance from earth. Weird.