Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for the ‘Monday’ Category

what if I woke up with a lotus on my head

filled with golden sun

and I could even type it with my eyes closed

and all the world made sense

my children whole and filled with golden light (they are you know)

the dark places and spaces, splaces if you like, filled with golden light (funny bits are welcome and are sometimes hard to summon in a person with cancer)

the light of god? not if you don’t believe in god, but it doesn’t matter because all are filled with light (no, I know, there are sick and damaged people beyond, seemingly beyond, the help even of their parents, beyond us….yesterday’s news and that father talking about his son and the sickness in our country, and I whisper in my head may it never be my children, never, and then, never any of my friends’ children and then any child I know and then anyone, let it not be anyone. WE ARE ALL CONNECTED. My network of helping friends is greater than those whose names I know. But this violence happens to someone we know, it is always one of us. We are kin.)

When I am filled in this way, I can forget

the house I haven’t adored or enjoyed for 14 years (too long) and maybe the house is metaphor for my own body and my own being and it’s tragic but true

so now if I don’t love my house, it’s okay; I still I have to love my body and my self, fully. I have to make do and not hate my house yes, hope and work for a better house, but make peace with myself and allow light

I have to Wake Up

we live in the darkness of bustling cars and news and the internet it is wonderfully connecting but we are not well in it we are on overload

My body is filled with chemicals so I have to take other chemicals to counter them, to live

sending the light—did you? because last night, after 2 am, I woke up bathed in it, filled with it, smiling, soft and peaceful, warm and content, feeling whole

I would not wish my diagnosis on anyone; there is no one to blame, so the alternative is to get mad. I haven’t gotten there yet. I need to see my anger and touch it and chew it to bits because I want to be free from it. I know it’s here when I ask “why me?” and when I can’t connect the person who I thought I would become (one who would always be free from cancer) to the one who I am, who has cancer in my body right now. Is it the power of the word cancer, from its history in my life, from the way it swirls around us as if it only happens to other people, takes ones we love, or is it something more?  The power of the word must diminish and it will diminish, but it may take a while. There will be better healing medicines and approaches. I believe every year there is progress and maybe a leap every 3 years, every 5, every 7, every 10.

Maybe I can reframe the meaning of the word. I want to hear it differently in my mind. cancer. multiple myeloma. treatment, recurrence. All the scary words. Can you help me? I want to face them first with a brave warrior stance and then let them lose their power so they are words I can allow to exist without me cringing in fear.

I want to show you my daughters. How mysterious their lives are when I see the photos of them when they were little and simply young; and now, in their lives as they separate away from me and Paul. The mystery of birthing them, nursing them, raising them, but they grow anyway and have a force within. They have to leave and it’s a good thing. It is what we want for them, to thrive and make their own lives with their own, new people.

Cleaving. To split.

Yes, give me a new house where I can be freer and have quiet from the road and constant cars, where the bedrooms are not next to the kitchen, where the ceilings are high and air and light crosses through the rooms. People say you don’t need a bigger house because my kids will leave soon, but that is beside the point. Not much bigger, just better laid out and off a busy road. And who doesn’t expect them to need places to come home to for many years nowadays? It takes a while.

I can feel the empty nest on the horizon and that’s not a mixed metaphor because that is how I can explain to you my experience of its approach.

I will have a new house. I will go into remission from multiple myeloma by god by hook or by crook by the golden light, by gum, as best I can making the best choices I can at the moment with the best information and help and friends doing research on the scary bits. I want it gone for a long while and then I want better options should it peak in again. I want to live. To wear a starry crown, but not a way over yonder like the hymn says; here on earth. To wear a starry crown. I woke up with one, so why not?

Thanks for your food, your prayers, your help, the beautiful flowers; your sending of light and visualizing all sorts of places inside of me, intimate spaces you never thought you’d know in yourself let alone in me. The interior of my bones, my perfect ribs, curving and white. We have little space in our bodies, our bodies are filled with cells and molecules and atoms. Fill mine with healing light. Calm blue waters. Do the same for yourself. Whatever colors work for you. Then receive some light and vibration from someone far away. You leave yourself alone, you sit still, even for a split second, and you receive the light of the universe coming to you. Don’t even try to be perfect, because in this practice, you already are. Leave yourself alone!

We are the light of the universe, how can the light fit into our very tightly-packed cells? Because we alone can conceive it and see it and make it so. It is a thought, a fantasy, a creation of the mind, but it imbues the body. It is a wish. You feel this when you meditate. It is mysterious but real, like not being able to put my finger on the passage of time.

I know, this is out there and sappy for me, but I woke up like this and I don’t give a shit right now. All the signals are telling me to re-read it, to hold it until morning, to wait, to judge. You know what happens when I judge myself? Yes, you are right, I become a better writer. But that’s wrong, that’s only judging something I produced. I can judge my work and make it better and I do and I want to and I should.

I’m going to let this silly sappy piece go

hold it in my hand and blow on it from my lips, right out into the world

all you have to do is receive

kiss the spark that is in you, the same spark that started the universe

there are rogue cells, there are bad chemicals in our air and water, I know. I have known for a long time because I was born in the sixties.

Say with me that these rogue cells must turn off the dirty work they started in my body. no party for them. off, be off with ya.

 

IMG_1491

shoo fly, don’t bother me, for I’m in love with somebody

my beautiful daughters, summer 2013

Read Full Post »

The hard truth of bone

embryonic cells swirling

differentiating into

nuclei

osteoblasts

blood

Dear readers:

As you well know, I have been struggling with pain in my upper body since April 2013 and before that with a couple of rib injuries in 2012.

Last December, things got worse—more pain and a sudden, painful protrusion on my L clavicle.

I started to feel really crappy, said to Hubby, “I am not myself; something’s wrong.”

I have been seeking help and answers the whole time—blood tests, lyme tests, RA tests, lupus tests. X rays; physical therapy, acupuncture, doctors. Everything I had been tested for came back negative—I’m strong and healthy by all appearances.

In January, I had a CT scan because of a concern my doctor had. Lo and behold, my ribs, sternum, clavicles, and spine are full of tiny fractures, ones that never showed up on 3 different x-rays over the last 2 years. These indicate multiple myeloma, a cancer of the blood.

More markers have come back which show certain proteins in my blood, further narrowing it down to multiple myeloma.

I need to use my blog again. Perhaps I will start slowly, perhaps I won’t use it much, but I need to refill my creative outlet here. I am steeping myself in a helpful, loving community and I ask for healing thoughts and visualizations and meditations. I ask you to see my ribcage and bones in white light, in liquid gold, healing, healed. Maybe you see violet, maybe you see the cool blue of water. Anything healing that you see when you think of me, send it.

Not only do I believe that my bones will be cleared of this after chemo, but I want the faulty signals causing the cells to have the wrong kind of party to be reconfigured so the right messages are sent to the marrow.

I ask you to chant and meditate and breathe for me and my family, for peace, for calm. It is hard for me to ask for these things, but I am learning, humbling. I know that quieting the mind and lighting up the chakras works, the visualizations help tremendously. I hope they help us all, givers and receivers alike.

I am on a healing journey and I am using the full force of what Western medicine has to offer. My adjuncts will be my acupuncture and my imagination and any healing thoughts and incantations you can send. I am smart and I will be with some of the best doctors around who treat mm. A world-class specialist at Dana Farber in Boston will likely coordinate with my local oncologist and I can still get chemo and day-to-day care locally.

I will allow comments here, but I may shut them down if I find it too difficult to field and manage input.

I do not want information that you have from the internet. I do not want questions. I do not need new information about alternate therapies at this time.

On the other hand, if you have a delicious recipe for a high-protein smoothie, I say AMEN!

In other support places, I am emphasizing being honest with my emotions, not matter how yucky they may be, but also I’m trying to remain positive and open. The use of my blog, my writing, may be slightly different. This is my space. You are guests.

My blog is sacred to me and I will be using it as a creative outlet and force, a place where I will allow myself to go into the dark if my soul needs it. If you judge me for this, I will block you from my blog.

That is all for now. Send love and light and thoughts of calm sleep and freedom from fear.

Peace.

Read Full Post »

The raspberries are in at the farm and they are super delicious, maybe more than any year previous. But this is exactly how I feel about the raspberries each year. Certainly this is the best they have ever tasted.

The town is emptied out because it is August. The students aren’t back yet and everyone and her brother is on the Cape or in Rhode Island. The sun and the air are perfect, especially at the farm.

I like to pick the tarragon in the herb garden. I don’t think anyone but me uses it. I think I single-handedly keep it robust, for you see, when you pick tarragon, it causes it to keep growing. Brookfield Farm tarragon the best tarragon I’ve ever eaten. It will not grow for me at home, neither in my garden nor in a pot.

One year I could not stop eating tarragon. I would pick it and eat it, lots of it. I think it affected my health. I didn’t grow an extra limb or anything, I just suspect it was acting on my hormones, something deep inside of me, bad. It made me a little crazy, I wanted to eat it at all hours.

I like the way tarragon makes my mouth kind of numb. I am experiencing a resurgence in my craving for it, only this year I have been eating it and then picking raspberries and popping them in my mouth. It is a taste sensation, I tell you, and I won’t be surprised when raspberry-tarragon desserts start showing up in fancy-pants restaurants from coast to coast.

When I eat the tarragon and pick the raspberries, I feel sinful, like I’ve gotten away with the Devil. The raspberries are in the accessible garden, directly across from the tarragon, so they are not for the regular farm share. That raspberry patch is way in the back of one of the main fields and not yet part of our share. I only eat a dozen or so of the raspberries at at time from the accessible garden and sometimes I think the sin is that there are so many overripe raspberries because no one is eating them at all.

Ah, summer. The real deal.

Read Full Post »

Turtle Facts From My Brain*

turtles are reptiles (therefore cold-blooded, therefore seek to sun themselves in warm places)

a turtle’s shell is made up of 13 plates

turtle is water critter; tortoise, land

THIRTEEN PLATES! Each and every turtle. How cool is that?

The mama sea turtle arduously drags her body onto the beach where she herself was hatched and in an annual ancient instinctual ritual, she digs a hole in the sand with her back legs (flippers?) and lays her (gooey) eggs. As the turtlings** hatch and attempt to crawl to the sea, thousands die in an ensuing feeding frenzy.

Once the giant sea turtle reaches maturity, it has few natural enemies (save MAN) and can live for over a hundred or two hundred years. Same with the giant tortoises.

Habitat Destruction and Environmental Degradation

I saw a giant sea turtle when I was snorkeling in the ocean in Hawaii. Yes, it was huge and beautiful and I can hardly believe it happened to me.

snapping turtle

oviparous (though some reptiles give birth to live young)

need wet places to lay their eggs (go turtle mamas, go!)

I drove my car home on 116 in S. Amherst on Friday. A turtle was in the middle of the southbound lane.

The turtle was in an apparent state of shock while car after car ran over it (not the wheels), not moving for at least the 4 minutes in which my car approached, I took in the sight, turned around about two blocks ahead, parked in the middle of the road (this is a busy street, peeps!), grabbed a towel, picked it up the turtle, put it in the grass away from the street….

Did the turtle crawl back into the busy road after I moved it? Don’t know.

*no, really, these tidbits are what I remember from any episode I’ve ever seen of Nature about turtles. Fact check me. Go ahead, I dare ya.

**turtlings is NOT a real word, but if you use it, I will know what you mean

Read Full Post »

I remembered a tiny piece of a dream from last night. But I warn you—it was very scary!

I walk into the kitchen in the morning and the bag of frozen poppy seed bagels is ON THE COUNTER, left out overnight, thawing in the room temperature air!!!

Are you all right? I know it was scary. Don’t worry—when I really woke up and went into the kitchen to make breakfast, the bagels were safe and sound in the freezer. Whew!

It sort of reminds me of this.

Now I will tell you something else scary that happened today and it was NOT in a dream.

I was at the DOT (Department of Transportation, but I’ve also seen the monikers RMV and DMV and BMV. I wish the Commonwealth would make up its mind!), and I saw a man with head fat. Yes. It’s true. He had a roll of fat on the back of his head.

Why do I share this? I don’t know. I know it’s not right to speak poorly of a person because of his/her appearance but I’m in a state of shock. Maybe the American diet really is as bad as they say.

Read Full Post »

blogger’s block

IMG_1206

I saw 2 male cardinals in the back yard this morning, such bright red. What else is bright red around here? Not much, not that particular red.

It seemed unusual, one male cardinal chasing the other in flight.

I have had some health challenges of late and maybe that is why I haven’t been writing here. Pain and exhaustion. Pain and questions. Boring boring health problems when all I want is to do as I please at all times that I please.

I am not writing poetry much more or less than any other time, I suppose, but I am working on a manuscript for submission. I get into a great space when I am working on it, a little vague when I’m not.

I know it’s a risk to lose readers when I don’t post regularly and it pulls at me.

My cat, she is crazy. Maybe the most bizarre and hard-to-love cat we’ve ever had. Just now? She had her front paws around the leg of the kitchen table, right next to my feet. Like she was in love with the table leg, hugging it.

The other morning, she climbed partway up the wall between the kitchen and basement landing. I had never seen that before. She jumped and clung pretty high up, I’d say about 4 feet and her body lingered there for at least a few seconds. That’s a long time when you are trying to defy gravity on a vertical surface with no footholds.

The cat is stir crazy, crazy for spring. Me, I want the snow we were promised on Saturday, the snow that never came. I am not ready for spring. I am glad for the snow and cold we’ve gotten even if I DO NOT LIKE the overcast skies day after day. I could do with more snow.

I think about the ocean a lot. I miss it. A winter ocean; a summer ocean; a tropical ocean; Ipswich, Cape Cod, my great loves. Even though I love the winter when it’s sunny and cold and when we get a lot of snow, I always love the ocean.

We were in Rockport, Mass last weekend, right on the ocean, but it was already nighttime and dark out and we could not see it. By morning, we got caught in a massive blizzard and had to hightail it west so we would not get stranded on Cape Ann.

I am the only one in the family who consistently loves the cat. She is a pain in the ass, always attacking humans when she wants to be fed. But she knows. She knows I’m the one who feeds her. So she hangs around me.

I saw the cardinals and I hope the cat will not get one come spring. This cat has never brought me a bird. Only mice and chipmunks. She is a keen attacker of human flesh (exposed feet, tender thighs) but maybe not a great hunter.

This you know.

(here is the link to this image: http://www.centralpark.com/usr/media/contest/winners-winter-2009/large.2nd.place.3.jpg)

Read Full Post »

IMG_0325

I think you can spell grueling with one l or 2. When I try with 2, my spell check gives me a red warning line.

I found out that the deadline for a chapbook competition to which I want to submit is NOT January 31, but January 4. How did I miss this? What was I thinking?

I am in the happy state of scrambling together my manuscript RIGHT NOW (except for this blog post).

Because I submitted a full-length manuscript back in July, I am in pretty good shape and this is only a 28-page chapbook.

This is not really grueling, but what is grueling are the voices in my head, the NO NO NOs and the YOU CAN’Ts and the THESE POEMS ARE NOT GOOD ENOUGHs and the YOU DON’T KNOW WHAT YOU’RE DOINGs.

Lie down, meditate, run, jump, hike, bathe, cook, clean, shovel, say om shanti as many times as it takes to kick the voices out and clear the mind and proceed. Do laundry, cook and clean some more. Make lists, clear desk.

I’m accepting any votes of confidence and encouragement from you, my pets. YOU. I need you.

One thing that is encouraging, all on my own: in looking over the manuscript from July (rejected, yes), I see, as with previous rejected manuscripts/poems, how many poems can be removed completely; I find words and lines that can be edited out. Looking broadly through my files, I also see that I have more new poems than I realized. I see that my writing is getting stronger, if not particularly varied in tone or subject, and I know that my ability to edit out pittances is better. I am earning a keener eye and ear.

This is the end of Year Two of my blog which I love knowing. I remember how scary it seemed at first, how exciting, how I felt on the edge of offense or scandal with each swear word or talk of sex or nudity. I read old posts and I know I have matured and gotten more comfortable. I know I am a better writer and that I can continue to improve.

I do believe this is my 400th post. I like the tidiness of it: last day of the year, 400 posts.

Good Riddance 2012!!!

IMG_0327

 

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »