Friday, February 21, 2014

Wheel of Time

Back to Songwriting

This is a link to a rough draft of a song I wrote. I've written, re-written and scrapped this one so many times, and then suddenly, after months of being unable to produce anything at all, this little ditty just finished itself.

Thursday, February 20, 2014

the bravest thing I've ever done

I was probably eight, and playing
in the yard because it was springtime
and my mom told me that I had to stop reading
the Bible because it was just a bunch of begats and begots and
it made the church ladies very nervous.

You sent me outside to get some fresh air, which
was not so mean, because I was losing track of the order
of the biblical stories; some were clear-cut and concise,
 others were pieced together, like
the yo-yo quilt we had hanging as a shower curtain in
the only bathroom of the house.

So I was pretending that my cat was a
pilgrim on his way to the holy land, and
I followed him over limestone outcroppings,
avoided the places where Ellie said there was poison oak
down to the path behind my house owned by a man
who mumbled to himself and rarely washed
his hands.

and he still owns fields where
he keeps dozens of horses; the setting for
a fantasy of a girl of eight who thinks
that reading the Bible is a satisfactory
activity on a June day.

We pass old Fords and boxcars and budding wineberry bushes
and black-eyed susans and I lose track of my
white cat, Snowball, named in an age before irony was
 the common tongue spoken in our home.

 I do not know the way and I keep walking, never thinking about
who might have written the graffiti on the trees, and why someone
would dump a rusting 50's style car into the woods, or how long ago
the pile of ashes in front of the boxcar had been a fire.

At the end of this seemingly endless path, there is a gate--
and in the gate there is a field and in the field there are
probably five unbridled horses running and walking, but
mostly just standing around.

So, of course, I climb under the fence and enter.

I walk to the top of the hill and just sit in the field, and watch
the horses do their horsey things, I think about how
this is freedom because I didn't have to spy through
the slatted gate or step up on my tiptoes to
pet their velvety noses, I just had to sit quietly
and wait for them to come up to me, and some
of them really did.

And that is the bravest thing I've ever done.

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Excerpt from a dream journal kept in Irving, Texas.

in trying to sort out what I am and what i want, I have been following my father's advice, and looking through my dream journal for answers.

August 20, 2013

In the dream, I am on an old-style airplane. Like the ones Wright Brothers flew.  Two of my old lovers are sitting in the back; they are merged into one person with a flickering face, changing constantly between the two that I have known.

We are flying over sights just like the ones in the American Airlines inspirational video.  Above is blue.  Below is Canyon DeChelly--even more beautiful than I remember. 

I blink, and the controls change. Now they are modern and complicated, full of command buttons and a joystick instead of the yoke I'd seen before.  

The plane is falling. Gradually at first, then into an impossible tailspin.  Trying to help, Brendan(s) tries to crawl up to me, just as the airplane pitches forward to an impossible attitude.  He is thrown from his seat and into the air, holding on to me by linked pinkies.  I try to fix the positioning of the airplane, but the engines are out. heis screaming for help, asking and begging me to fix it, but I can't. 

He tumbles out completely, face still flickering...

I slide out of my seat, simple and light, and follow his descent without protesting. Because, what else could I do.  

In the air, We detach from one another, and I watch him become a speck and then disappear below me. I am suspended in the air,  floating like paper in the sky. Before I hit the ground, I evaporate into that robin's egg blue and the  green-speckled clay of Canyon deChelly. I become nothing. 

Tonight, I want to dream something new.