stuffandthings
Fork in the road.

Fork in the road.

Willa hid from her father in the brush outside their house. She tried to breathe quietly and steadily although the terror inside her made it difficult. She could hear his boots on the porch. He said her name. He did not call out, he simply and calmly repeated it. Willa could hear her mother inside as she hushed her brother. Willa knew that welts were rising and that likely, skin was broken. Her father’s belt and hand leaving red shadows on them all. Willa  tried not to move. Branches poked at her and made snapping sounds as her weight shifted. Her father said her name again. His boots left the porch and made a softer sound on the grasses that led to where she hid.  Above her, the moon was out and the branches surrounding it, glowed. Willa was inside something with veins and arteries and a moon-shaped heart…but it was not safe here. Willa’s mother held her breath inside the house, and Willa closed her eyes.   #nightwalk

Willa hid from her father in the brush outside their house. She tried to breathe quietly and steadily although the terror inside her made it difficult. She could hear his boots on the porch. He said her name. He did not call out, he simply and calmly repeated it. Willa could hear her mother inside as she hushed her brother. Willa knew that welts were rising and that likely, skin was broken. Her father’s belt and hand leaving red shadows on them all. Willa tried not to move. Branches poked at her and made snapping sounds as her weight shifted. Her father said her name again. His boots left the porch and made a softer sound on the grasses that led to where she hid. Above her, the moon was out and the branches surrounding it, glowed. Willa was inside something with veins and arteries and a moon-shaped heart…but it was not safe here. Willa’s mother held her breath inside the house, and Willa closed her eyes. #nightwalk

painting with my phone.

painting with my phone.

"What if the Hokey-Pokey really IS what it’s all about?"

"What if the Hokey-Pokey really IS what it’s all about?"

Venus sits with me on the floor. Sweaters and tea help us imagine it is Winter.

Venus sits with me on the floor. Sweaters and tea help us imagine it is Winter.

Mae woke before the sun came up and dressed quickly. Cotton pants with an elastic waistband. A cotton t-shirt. Slip on sandals.  The clothes and shoes were soft and old like she was. Mae thought it appropriate they all go together. Mae was not hungry, but wanted something from the earth inside her as she rejoined it. In the dark kitchen she sliced and juiced oranges from the three trees just out back. The trees had been good to her and Mae thanked them and the fruit as she pressed and then drank. Mae whispered a thank you to her house as she walked away from it. She did not turn around for a last look. Mae knew the windows and porch and screen door all smiled at her as she moved away. It was a short walk through tall grasses to the cliff. The sun began to show itself as if someone with a steady hand turned a dimmer switch. Gently and steadily upwards.  Mae took her sandals off and tossed them into the air in front of her. Her eyes followed them as they rose and then fell; far far far down the cliffside. She would meet them there. Mae touched her face, arms, chest, belly….wiggled her toes…and then, with her mouth wide open, Mae stepped off the cliff. She let the wind and the rocks, the sunrise and her own physical weight bring her to a quiet place. It was time. Mae was not sad. Mae was just aware as her eyes opened that morning, that it was recycling day, and she was to be a real part of that.  #nightwalk

Mae woke before the sun came up and dressed quickly. Cotton pants with an elastic waistband. A cotton t-shirt. Slip on sandals. The clothes and shoes were soft and old like she was. Mae thought it appropriate they all go together. Mae was not hungry, but wanted something from the earth inside her as she rejoined it. In the dark kitchen she sliced and juiced oranges from the three trees just out back. The trees had been good to her and Mae thanked them and the fruit as she pressed and then drank. Mae whispered a thank you to her house as she walked away from it. She did not turn around for a last look. Mae knew the windows and porch and screen door all smiled at her as she moved away. It was a short walk through tall grasses to the cliff. The sun began to show itself as if someone with a steady hand turned a dimmer switch. Gently and steadily upwards. Mae took her sandals off and tossed them into the air in front of her. Her eyes followed them as they rose and then fell; far far far down the cliffside. She would meet them there. Mae touched her face, arms, chest, belly….wiggled her toes…and then, with her mouth wide open, Mae stepped off the cliff. She let the wind and the rocks, the sunrise and her own physical weight bring her to a quiet place. It was time. Mae was not sad. Mae was just aware as her eyes opened that morning, that it was recycling day, and she was to be a real part of that. #nightwalk

Zep is enjoying the ‘out with the old, in with the new’ phase.  #space #lettinggo #charity #hardwork

Zep is enjoying the ‘out with the old, in with the new’ phase. #space #lettinggo #charity #hardwork

John moved through the apartment quietly. A scented candle still burned, low and milky in an owl shaped holder on the nightstand. Next to the girl. John could not remember he name, but he had laughed with her hours earlier and even danced; slow and soft, in her livingroom. John could not think of another time he had danced with a woman. Perhaps at school. In another lifetime. Another place on earth when things were not as they were now. His brother was still alive and he had plans. Now John smelled of this woman and of vodka and some sort of food he could not recall. He reached for the doorknob to exit this place, and turned around slowly to have a last look. He could see her through the open bedroom door, arms and legs spread wide. He thought about the people that would miss her, and John realized he was one of them. He took a small ceramic bird from her shelf by the door and placed it in his pocket. He turned the knob and thought about how romantic the night had been.   #nightwalk

John moved through the apartment quietly. A scented candle still burned, low and milky in an owl shaped holder on the nightstand. Next to the girl. John could not remember he name, but he had laughed with her hours earlier and even danced; slow and soft, in her livingroom. John could not think of another time he had danced with a woman. Perhaps at school. In another lifetime. Another place on earth when things were not as they were now. His brother was still alive and he had plans. Now John smelled of this woman and of vodka and some sort of food he could not recall. He reached for the doorknob to exit this place, and turned around slowly to have a last look. He could see her through the open bedroom door, arms and legs spread wide. He thought about the people that would miss her, and John realized he was one of them. He took a small ceramic bird from her shelf by the door and placed it in his pocket. He turned the knob and thought about how romantic the night had been. #nightwalk

Alice held her hand out, and those who walked by ignored it. She had collected leaves and stones, seed pods and small wrappers. Alice wanted people to see them. To come to her and point to each gem and ask about it. She had a story for each of them. She had overheard a couple decide to keep the baby as she picked up the seed pod. The man told the woman that he loved her, and their baby. The woman cried and kissed him and smiled. Alice held the seed pod like a baby and went about her day. She wanted to tell her stories, but those who walked by saw only a woman asking for money. Palm up and cupped, holding what looked to them like bits of garbage. Alice saw them as gems. Tiny witnesses to moments and exchanges. Alice was not begging for change, she was offering it.  Maybe if Alice were still a child, people would stop and look at what she held. Time gave her more pages, but changed her cover. No one knew what a great book Alice was.   #nightwalk

Alice held her hand out, and those who walked by ignored it. She had collected leaves and stones, seed pods and small wrappers. Alice wanted people to see them. To come to her and point to each gem and ask about it. She had a story for each of them. She had overheard a couple decide to keep the baby as she picked up the seed pod. The man told the woman that he loved her, and their baby. The woman cried and kissed him and smiled. Alice held the seed pod like a baby and went about her day. She wanted to tell her stories, but those who walked by saw only a woman asking for money. Palm up and cupped, holding what looked to them like bits of garbage. Alice saw them as gems. Tiny witnesses to moments and exchanges. Alice was not begging for change, she was offering it. Maybe if Alice were still a child, people would stop and look at what she held. Time gave her more pages, but changed her cover. No one knew what a great book Alice was. #nightwalk

Peter could not stop drawing the tree. He drew on everything he could. When his allotted paper was gone and covered on both sides,.he drew on the walls. He drew on paper napkins and toilet paper. Peter went through pencils as if they were lit candles. The led seemed to simply burn away as the tree emerged again and again. The Doctor he was forced to see twice a week was an angry and fat man. He had no questions and spent most of their sessions discussing his wife and her sadness. He mentioned once that he enjoyed Peter’s drawings, but never asked about them. He had no questions, only complaints. Had he asked, Peter would have answered honestly. This tree he drew was where he found his mother hanging. It was years ago and.when he was too small a boy to cut her down. He had come to this place because he could not stop stringing women in the trees on his property. Ornaments he could finally reach, but found, each time, that watching the women move and swing until the life left them, was far more interesting. He had once seen a ballet on public television. Peter drew trees that turned ordinary girls into ballerinas.  So much spinning off the ground…Penciled branches and leaves, like feathers and tutus and hands smacking together in applause.   #nightwalk

Peter could not stop drawing the tree. He drew on everything he could. When his allotted paper was gone and covered on both sides,.he drew on the walls. He drew on paper napkins and toilet paper. Peter went through pencils as if they were lit candles. The led seemed to simply burn away as the tree emerged again and again. The Doctor he was forced to see twice a week was an angry and fat man. He had no questions and spent most of their sessions discussing his wife and her sadness. He mentioned once that he enjoyed Peter’s drawings, but never asked about them. He had no questions, only complaints. Had he asked, Peter would have answered honestly. This tree he drew was where he found his mother hanging. It was years ago and.when he was too small a boy to cut her down. He had come to this place because he could not stop stringing women in the trees on his property. Ornaments he could finally reach, but found, each time, that watching the women move and swing until the life left them, was far more interesting. He had once seen a ballet on public television. Peter drew trees that turned ordinary girls into ballerinas. So much spinning off the ground…Penciled branches and leaves, like feathers and tutus and hands smacking together in applause. #nightwalk

Henry clipped the paper bib around Bonnie’s neck and aimed his large light towards her mouth. She was wearing lipstick again. A reddish orange that by the end of her examination would be spread across her cheeks like strange ribbons, or stretchmarks. Bonnie smiled at Henry with her eyes and opened her mouth, wide. He could smell her breath through his paper mask. Warm and woody; coffee and licorice. Henry watched as her chest rose and fell with her breaths, just out of his sight, below her lips which he so desperately wanted to part, more than was natural. He wanted to gently rip her open and crawl inside. He wanted to fill her….to drag lipstick in with himself and find a place to land. Somewhere inside her; beyond her teeth and above her legs. Her heartbeat loud against his head and her breath and lip color on and all around him. Henry wanted to be inside Bonnie, and to look upwards at the light that came in from her open mouth.  #nightwalk

Henry clipped the paper bib around Bonnie’s neck and aimed his large light towards her mouth. She was wearing lipstick again. A reddish orange that by the end of her examination would be spread across her cheeks like strange ribbons, or stretchmarks. Bonnie smiled at Henry with her eyes and opened her mouth, wide. He could smell her breath through his paper mask. Warm and woody; coffee and licorice. Henry watched as her chest rose and fell with her breaths, just out of his sight, below her lips which he so desperately wanted to part, more than was natural. He wanted to gently rip her open and crawl inside. He wanted to fill her….to drag lipstick in with himself and find a place to land. Somewhere inside her; beyond her teeth and above her legs. Her heartbeat loud against his head and her breath and lip color on and all around him. Henry wanted to be inside Bonnie, and to look upwards at the light that came in from her open mouth. #nightwalk

Chuck had been lost for hours. He had gotten a phone call about his son and a car accident. And then the words, ‘he is gone’.  Chuck had closed his laptop and left the office without speaking to anyone. He moved on the carpet casually, as if he was headed to the men’s room, or the kitchen. He was not. In the elevator he saw his face and saw the parts of it that were his son. The eyes. Lips. Chuck left his car in the parking garage and began to move, on foot. His steps were assurred enough that no one stopped him and asked if he needed help. He did need help. He needed to know how time and the Heavens worked so he could not feel this pain. He longed to be the super hero he thought he would be when he was a boy on the roof with a towel for a cape. He thought about his son and tried to remember his voice. Pain made a sound inside Chuck’s head. He walked all night and continued to remind himself to breathe. As the sun came up, Chuck stopped outside a seedy bar. He saw a sign. He could taste the relief just reading the words. Chuck saw his boy’s face from years ago. It reminded him of why he had stopped drinking in the first place. This was a sign. But just a sign. It was not a magical message about giving up. Chuck adjusted the pain inside himself and continued to walk.  #nightwalk

Chuck had been lost for hours. He had gotten a phone call about his son and a car accident. And then the words, ‘he is gone’. Chuck had closed his laptop and left the office without speaking to anyone. He moved on the carpet casually, as if he was headed to the men’s room, or the kitchen. He was not. In the elevator he saw his face and saw the parts of it that were his son. The eyes. Lips. Chuck left his car in the parking garage and began to move, on foot. His steps were assurred enough that no one stopped him and asked if he needed help. He did need help. He needed to know how time and the Heavens worked so he could not feel this pain. He longed to be the super hero he thought he would be when he was a boy on the roof with a towel for a cape. He thought about his son and tried to remember his voice. Pain made a sound inside Chuck’s head. He walked all night and continued to remind himself to breathe. As the sun came up, Chuck stopped outside a seedy bar. He saw a sign. He could taste the relief just reading the words. Chuck saw his boy’s face from years ago. It reminded him of why he had stopped drinking in the first place. This was a sign. But just a sign. It was not a magical message about giving up. Chuck adjusted the pain inside himself and continued to walk. #nightwalk

Patsy woke up in the hospital, her mouth like something salted in the sun.  There were people in the room with her. Some sleeping, others awake and holding their cell phones. Two of them were children. A  boy and a girl, who drew shapes in the steam of their breath on the one window the  room had. Patsy could see hearts and stars on the glass and the tops of trees outside. A man ran from the room and came back with a Doctor. The rest of the people, all strangers, surrounded her bed and cried. The children called her,  ‘Mama’.  Patsy was sure there was some mistake. Maybe she had changed bodies. She was no ones’ Mother. She had no family. She felt repelled just by looking at the needy faces of them all. They called her Lyla, and asked too many questions.  All Patsy knew was that her head ached. And her privates. And her eyes. She remembered that she had been out walking…..and then nothing. Nothing but the certainty of how she ached, how much she wanted water, and how little she enjoyed the company of these strangers.  All of them so hungry to get at her. Giant baby birds; featherless and starving. So many open mouths moving towards her,  it made Patsy dizzy.    #nightwalk

Patsy woke up in the hospital, her mouth like something salted in the sun. There were people in the room with her. Some sleeping, others awake and holding their cell phones. Two of them were children. A boy and a girl, who drew shapes in the steam of their breath on the one window the room had. Patsy could see hearts and stars on the glass and the tops of trees outside. A man ran from the room and came back with a Doctor. The rest of the people, all strangers, surrounded her bed and cried. The children called her, ‘Mama’. Patsy was sure there was some mistake. Maybe she had changed bodies. She was no ones’ Mother. She had no family. She felt repelled just by looking at the needy faces of them all. They called her Lyla, and asked too many questions. All Patsy knew was that her head ached. And her privates. And her eyes. She remembered that she had been out walking…..and then nothing. Nothing but the certainty of how she ached, how much she wanted water, and how little she enjoyed the company of these strangers. All of them so hungry to get at her. Giant baby birds; featherless and starving. So many open mouths moving towards her, it made Patsy dizzy. #nightwalk

Amazing day. Not over yet.  #ew

Amazing day. Not over yet. #ew