Reading the News

There are ice-storms in Massachusetts,
and to the north, a valley full of flood.
Newsprint records the span of the world’s fits and tempers
but my mind doesn’t register that much.

I’m just saying that the magnitude can conquer
the fine intercession of the soul:
You can care for an hour, or a measure, or a moment
but then you’re just an ember in the cold.

Wait- We are all composed of moments
that erase like a dream-dismantled touch.
I glimpse the vast picture in a brief illumination,
but it dissolves when I recognize too much.

There’s a reason for this ache, this endless bleeding;
it’s not something that the mind will understand,
but it sounds in the space between the pulmonary surge
and the brush of your hand against a hand.

There are ice-storms in Massachusetts,
and in the north, a valley full of flood.
My heart spares a beat for today’s worried families
in hopes that it will do some good.

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2008 – some highlights

Let’s see. Thinking way back to the beginning of 2008…

I had to go into my blog and try and see what it was like last January. This post seemed to be my summing up then:

Can’t Look Back so Give it a Moment

Things aren’t so different, but they’re completely different. Isn’t that weird? And weird how the people change, from year to year. You don’t think things are changing, particularly, but subtly, the characters in your circle change.

This year is different in that I actually attempted and am still working on my long term goal: To write a book.

So the decision to write that I made two years ago, January 2006 has evolved in its way from daily writing practice, to articles, to articles and a blog, and now  novel writing.

Wow. It seemed for awhile there that I’d never be brave enough to start a book. I have nanowrimo friends to thank for that, particularly Lazy Buddhist

Last year, at this time, I was getting over a brief and intensely romantic fling with a man who used to speak broken Italian to me in the morning. I thought myself heartbroken for the span of a very long weekend, and I thought myself disillusioned and done with the love game for a couple of months, and then I met the most stubborn, solid, accepting person I’ve ever met who has been anchor to my storm, support while I explored old wounds. My brief declaration of heartbreak evaporated and I haven’t felt lonely since those late days in February when my heart got all tangled up in him. 

I don’t know exactly what we are, or what we will be, or what will happen before we can be more, the way things stand- but I know he’ll always be in my life. 

And while storm and transition took place in his life, I met someone who also brought me joy. And then there was sadness because I couldn’t really decide which direction to go- or if I was in a good state to be with someone at all. So I stalled out a bit.

So I start this year with choices that I may not be ready to make. And that actually feels harder than losing someone. Because unlike the story books, where one is actually the better man, and the other has a hidden agenda or a bad character, they’re both incredible people of integrity, people I’d be lucky to have as a romantic partner.

So there was that confusion.

My daughter… she’s older, and taller. I can’t stop that need in me with each passing year to dig my heels in and stop time somehow. That’s a feeling I may always have because of mistakes I made early on, time that I missed being engaged in her. Being ‘out of it’ in my early twenties was hard, I guess, but it’s harder, this continual process of waking. There are definitely benefits to anesthesia of the spirit, but that’s scary stuff. 

So much time can pass before you wake up.

2008 saw the death of Heath Ledger, who gave a mesmerizing last performance as The Joker in Batman.

2008 was a year of exhaustive campaigning. And we weighed in here, and everywhere over the internet, blogging and writing and reading about political possibilities. And then Obama won.

That was a big part of 2008.

2008 saw three friends of mine return from Iraq. I don’t know how the experiences they survived there will influence their 2009’s, but I know it will be there, maybe deep under the surface, a silent factor in everything they think, feel and do.

2008 I met Bob Church, here in blog world. I met others too, who mean a lot to me today, but I must mention Bob specifically because our acquaintance was brief. He no longer is able to type and to write due to the cancer that has ravaged his body, but that acquaintance was very meaningful to me. I feel cheated that I didn’t get to know him for longer, but incredibly grateful that I had the chance to know him at all. His blog ‘Not Quite Right‘ will be on my blogroll for as long as there is a Stop & Wander. I hope people who read this will sometimes go and visit his words.

In 2008 I learned a little bit more about patience, but I’m impatient with myself about all there is still to learn. :)

In 2008 I took steps to seek help for the long-lasting repercussions of the abusive relationship I was in when I was twenty and pregnant. All that time and personal complication, and the diagnosis was pretty simple and clear cut: Post-traumatic-stress disorder. For some reason, having the name that identifies the set of personal set-backs I’ve encountered gives me a sense of relief. I have identified the problem. That’s the first step.

I’m no more extroverted then I was a year ago, but I derive more pleasure from my intimate relationships. More than ever, I love a good story. I think stories are important. Maybe this year I can look around more at my family, at their stories. For a long time it’s been easier to focus on the stories of people I didn’t know.

And that’s my summary. 

It doesn’t call for resolutions, just a continuing along on our story, Sierra and I. And the people I come to know, like all of you here. It’s beautiful to me to see your stories, to get to laugh along and cry with you. To be touched, to reach out and draw in. Those patterns of a really great story.

I wonder what will be in 2009.

I wonder.

Big Boom

Listening to the news, but I don’t really believe it. It’s like that movie, armageddon.

Is anyone else hearing this?

7,000 just GONE. An ‘estimated 7,000 people’. They keep showing that satellite picture again and again, and it looks like a movie with the impact and explosion, so I don’t really believe it.

Meteor hits. Thousands dead. Just ended.

I don’t even understand how people can continue to live when it’s that random. They’re talking about the impact and comparing it to the bombs dropped in Hiroshima, and it seems like exactly the same thing (but different).

All these people just evaporated with no say, and it made no difference what their plans or ambitions or how they lead their life. I keep checking on Sierra.

I swear I felt something- not to get all Star Wars and shit cus the nutbars are soon enough going to be talking about judgment day, but it wasn’t the impact (from that far away? naw) it was like an uneasiness. a ‘disturbance in the force’… yeah, go ahead laugh, but at the moment it doesn’t really seem to matter how stupid what I say sounds. 7,000 people were dead like in a millisecond.

I guess when life is that random it’s best to express yourself when you have the chance. I’m gonna go call someone I love.