I came back from the trip and slept blissfully in my own bed for twelve hours straight. I was dead to the world.
I had to take a hike into the State Forest on Memorial Day. I had to. I needed the communion of trees to cleanse my palate after two days with friends to, from, and at a concert. It drained me. Five different life stories trying to operate as one unit. Soldiers are good at such things. Artists, hippies, whatever we are, trying to function…. I dunno.
I feel very scattered right now. I’m not even sure what I should make this post about. Change? Loneliness? Attitude? Anger? Belief?
There was something about …….. I guess I sensed depth there. I was baring my soul by the third or fourth encounter. I’m not the type to bare my soul. There are things that people have known me for years and years and years don’t even know about me.
The more confused I am the more I must walk, so deep deep past the Posted Private Property Signs. What? You can’t post private property in a state park, can you?
I like to trespass.
Life should be numerous mysteries to explore. I want to immerse myself into the mysteries without disruption but I am always called away.
I pick the trails by watching the wind hit the trees. The trees speak and tell me which way I should go. Signs and signs. Finally one has a name. Posted by the 49 Club. Climbing up and over dramatic steeps and down the other side. Someone wants these sand dunes left alone. I hike and hike to find the trees open onto an overlook of a beautiful reservoir.
This is where I had the communication with the wind. I sat atop the hill and the breeze was so strong that there were no mosquitoes to speak of. I didn’t think I would find a place to meditate today without being attacked. And here it is. And I ask if someone is there for me. I ask if any guides or entities are near, if God can hear me. The wind rises profoundly in response. It answers me again later, even stronger… but I can’t remember what the question was.
I thought it was rich assholes or sinister environmental offenders or rednecks posting illegal signs to have their own private four-wheeler trails. After seeing discarded plant dishes I think I may have figured it out.
1. So you are growing on state land and you don’t want anyone stumbling upon your crop and helping themselves. It is probably more important not to call attention to the authorities by posting on a public land. 2. Get rid of the evidence. Don’t leave it in plain site. Bring it back out of the woods or bury it. It wasn’t even taken off a main trail.
Sometimes I wonder how dumb people really are. Sometimes I wonder how deep the conspiracy goes. Maybe someone is misleading me with those plant trays. Maybe I think I have it figured out but I have been deliberately directed off-course.
Head games. Pa. Pa. Pa Paranoia. Will destroy ya.
It pisses me off that these growers attempt to restrict the greatest sacredness in reality to me, but I probably hate the powers that be more than they do. It is absolutely ridiculous to forbid something naturally growing upon the earth. People have no business regulating such things. But there is profit in it and where there is profit to be had in the United States of ‘Merica…
For now, I decide to leave it alone. I will hike other areas of the park. There is much more to explore. More intrigue awaits.
But now, I know there is a Mecca in the heart of the forest. Someone found it long before me.
I am reminded of that summer in Burlington when I was reading the Black Hole graphic series by Charles Burns. The strips depicted teenagers transforming throughout. They developed ghastly anomalies. One grew a tail. One had bat-like wing structures sprout from her forehead. One had bulbous goiters collar her neck. One had the skin shrink around his mouth so he was baring the gums and teeth of a decaying corpse. No two disfigurements were alike. And they went into the forest to hide.
This series haunted my head, the lake and the land. It haunted the part of me that conjoins with the land in the cold damp mineral caverns. The part that is in the murk and the mist. The part that is very deep in the water. So deep that you feel the immense dark strangeness. There is fear of the unknown, but the exhilaration of engulfing oneself when it warps you like nothing you’ve experienced. Lake Champlain changed me. I will never be the same. It cracked me and poured mysticism into my fault lines. Sometimes I wonder if I will ever make it back to that land.
I was living on the great hill of the South End overlooking Lake Champlain, at the time. Lake Champlain is enchanted. My boyfriend and I mentioned the Lady of the Lake in various conversations. The peninsula, Lone Rock Point, to the right of North Beach is wooded. It is enchanted, also. I wandered it at twilight one night. I came upon a quaint little cottage and I wondered if it were some type of caretaker cottage. I would like to be such a sentinel at this time and place. There is this towering and huge brick building with the elongated windows seen through the trees at the point of the rock. It is a school that overlooks the lake and it captures the imagination from my vantage point down on the road.
If I don’t get swept up, I could stay all summer exploring this forest, the state forest off my grandmother’s road. I feel it’s tendrils already wrapping around me. The mystery must be exhumed. I am not listening close enough. My ear is not close enough to the ground.
Pull me down, I pray you.
When I get off the trails and a ways down the dirt road I see a four-wheeler headed toward me. He’s a younger guy, looks like he could be one of my friends. He has a black lab trotting at his side. When I realize the dog isn’t on a leash, I become cautious. In my whole life I’ve never had a fear of dogs. However, jogging the other day I had to come to a stop as these two big dogs growled and barked only feet away from me. Their owner could not call them off. I felt victimized and now I’m feeling suspect. This dog is friendly and sweet and the guy on the four-wheeler assures me she is OK. He has a girl clinging to his back. I don’t check her out, but she seems pretty young.
I wonder if this is our culprit. Or one of them. It makes sense.
3. Don’t bring teenage girls to your operation to pop their cherries or gloat. Teenage girls may not use discretion.
I understand why someone would begin such an operation. Older and older and nothing to show. Fed the Kanye videos but stuck in the trailers.
I’m not in the mood lately. Or rather, my moods have been swinging dramatically between heartfelt gratuity, moments of inner tranquility to spiking, disruptive anger and dark bitterness.
The mood swings. The balance of positive and negative thought and emotion. Contrast. Life is what it is. It is what it is. It keeps me interested and fed.
My second cousin [whom my grandmother enjoys martyring herself for], is a whining, walking plea for sympathy. She’s parked her ass in our living room for the first half of Memorial Day. I am outraged to find her still there when I return from my lengthy commune with the woods.
She has Fibromyalgia which is short for developing a heroin addiction at seventeen and being addicted to painkillers ever since.
As much as I can conceive we are all part of one whole, I may always feel injustice and self-righteousness. I may always feel like I am the one picking up the slack for a world full of jackasses and parasites.
I’ve been the jackass before. At my lowest, I actually tried to become an alcoholic. I can thank my physical constitution that it wouldn’t stick.
Most of all, I am grateful I am not her. I am grateful her lessons were not mine to work through in this lifetime. We are from the same f’ed up extended family, but I thank God I am not a product of her nuclear family. There is nothing pretty about it.
It makes sense. I came of age with Kurt Cobain’s shrill and fragile rage. When the young heard it we all listened because he seemed to be the only one voicing something real. It is only right that my writing should come of age with angst.
My heart is positive. Really. I am so happy to be alive. It feels really, really, really good. I love my mind and how we play together all of the time. I love my body more and more. I love the sensations it produces. I love the way my naked curves still possess the sacred film of sleep in the early morning. I love my soul so much that to lose it, to dissipate out of it… I can’t imagine it. I can’t imagine the loss of my identity. I truly love myself.
And when I can reach the magic of my dreams where I dip and shoot up on currents of air… when I can stay with the magic of my dreams I am incredibly excited for the future. I realize I can really LOVE people and I don’t love them because they are perfect. I love them because they are special. I chose them or they have been chosen to be in my karmic family.
My uncle once told my mother to get away from my biological father after he dropped to his knees in front of them and banged his head repeatedly against the floor.
I was thinking of this when I began to beat myself with my palm on my forehead sometime last week. I was frustrated with my grandmother and while her back was turned I began to whack myself over and over.
I guess the anger is inherited. I had a moment when my body went limp because I thought my brother, who was at my back, was going to kill me. To be fair, I had just flung a coffee mug at his temple. Oh, those younger years…
But it is so easy to forgive my brother his white hot temper that does not crackle. It only snaps. Because that anger was never ours. It was displaced anger that people shoved onto us because they didn’t know what to do with it. I can remember my mom shouting at him that he was “just like his father.” Then my brother shouts at me years later that I am “just like my mother.”
It was the worst thing he could say to me, just as it had been the worst thing my mom could have said to him. But it fueled me. I made sure I wasn’t just like her. It took years of action to disprove that condemnation. I never said a word to him. But with every single car payment I sent him, he realized I was like myself. He is still realizing I am myself.
I know the power of forgiveness. Rather, the surrender of forgiveness. I truly adhere to the old adage that “To err is human and to forgive is divine.” I know that holding onto things really only affects me. But they are part of me and I feel I need to address the wrongs. I would like some acknowledgement from my mother.
When my eyes turn to question her, I would like her to not avoid me with a glazed-over, wide-eyed stupidity. Did I learn that from her or did she learn that from me? It is hard to say.
I get it, I do. We are all perfecting our own existence. We are all doing the best we can. Stay positive. There are no absolutes. I get it.
So much shit to be exhumed.
It reminds me of high school. Tagging along on someone else’s mission. Joining someone else’s story. My friend is only itching to find her boyfriend because she is jonesing for a cigarette. I could be anyone to her… because part of me is always absent in these situations. It always has been. I’ve left my heart in the forest. Maybe that is what is missing. Or maybe it’s obvious that I’m not where the good time is at.
But I have finally gotten comfortable with myself. I am present at this time. I am enjoying walking on the promenade beside her. That is enough for me, but she needs something else. My friend says, “We’ve got to find some more people! All I have is Brooke.”
I say, “Gee, that makes me feel really adequate.”
“It’s these little things. They can pull you under. Live your life filled with joy and thunder.” Michael Stipe said that.
On the way home we stop at a Denny’s for lunch. The boyfriend we spent last night looking for is eyeing me intensely as I am trying to tell my other friend about raw honey. Except I don’t have my details straight. Heat should not be used for extraction. It will kill the cultures… or whatever. I’m trying to make a bigger point, though. I’m trying to say that not only do you have to worry about getting raw honey, you have to make sure they are using the right process. I’m trying to say that once you become conscious of what you are ingesting, a whole multitude of factors come into play that weren’t there before. It’s pandora’s box.
He knows something about honey. He can be the argumentative type and I can see he is rearing to argue. I say, “Dude, I know what I’m talking about. I went to a workshop.” In retrospect, that makes me sound like a total tool and this is when his girlfriend got up to use the bathroom.
I wasn’t trying to climb upon a soapbox. I’m just trying to have a conversation with a friend.
This seems to be a repetitive occurrence in my life. Me, excited about what I am talking about, trying to make a expansive comment about what I’ve learned, generalizing my facts because I don’t remember. Some male, just waiting to discredit everything I’m saying by calling into question what I see as a minor detail in the grand scheme of the conversation.
I value detail. I do. I respect those that can remember it immensely. But I hate it when I feel like someone is just watching me, waiting for me to screw up. Someone is waiting to pounce.
I apologized days later to my friend and I asked her to apologize to her boyfriend for me. So eloquently she said, “It is water under the bridge,” and I think of the rushing water under the bridge the day I performed the Egyptian spell.
And I wonder why it is so easy to forgive our friends when we hold our parents in Supreme Court. Do we all wish to cross-examine our mother’s until they crumble? Do we all let our friends offenses glide soundlessly away underneath a bridge?
Actually, my mother hasn’t gotten nearly what she deserves in terms of vindication. I have a way of not committing her offenses to my memory. I let them slide away, too. There has just been so many that it is no longer about what she has done wrong, but the person that she is.
Most of my comedic heroes are neurotic Jewish men – Woody Allen, Larry David, Mark Maron, my ex-boyfriend. They seem to be revolted by and ostracizing everyone but themselves. I love it. I’m comfortable here. But. I don’t want to be the cynic who sits in my corner booth studying everyone and thinking the worst, making the snide comments because that is where my comfort zone lies.
If I always believe the worst, I can’t find my dreams in a pile of smoke-billowing- fuselage bashed into the ground.
My mother taught me disappointment.
Maybe I can just state that my mother taught me how to dream boldly and expansively, to fill my heart with hope. However, the lesson of reality and dishonesty was so hurtful. My mother taught me what not to become. I tell her I forgive you. I tell her on the airfield beside my grandmother’s home in the middle of the night as I learn to fly.
And this is beautiful. It is where we both want to be. Yet, I know it is only a matter of time before she snaps at me rashly that my niece and I are being too loud in a pizza joint or threatens to leave me without a ride home from Virginia because I am being too loud in my brother’s house. My eyes challenge her and she knows that is all she has to use. A ride home. The next day she acts like I’m her best friend.
I am the scapegoat. My mother doesn’t dare hiss at my brother. My mother doesn’t dare hiss at my sister, either. My sister is the side-stepping, sensitive crab. Her shell protects an inner vulnerability. When she is upset, her suppressed voice wavers verging on a plunge into breakdown. My mother and I have been afraid of breaking my sister for years.
I will sacrifice this scapegoat on the alter. I will draw the blood over my face and head. I will pin my mother to the wall by her neck. I will make her stare me in the eye as I am anointed in blood.
The friend whom I was talking honey with asks me about my overall concert experience a couple mornings later in the teacher’s room. She is a dear friend, a long standing friend.
I tell her I don’t know why I have to repeatedly learn this lesson. Being a fifth wheel doesn’t work for me (though it happened inadvertently this time). I tell her how I thought I had this deep connection with this other friend but I was wrong. That is O.K. Like all persons, she was just holding a mirror up so I could see myself. What I want is connection… and superficial won’t do. I miss companionship and having that person at the end of the day to cave to. It’s time for someone who really gets me.
Jenn understands this at the most intrinsic level. She is a sun Libra with a Libra Ascendant. I have expressed my loneliness to the queen of balance and relationship. She is quiet and graceful and empathetic. I have told the right person.
Phantoms already inhabit my mind. Her eyes will make my heart sink and her smile so I can’t pull my eyes away. Or he will be all consuming. Whomever this person is, I want them to completely devastate me.
What am I saying? Remember to love your pretend indifference, Brooke. But oh how quick I turn into putty. I can’t callous my heart but I can hide away for years.
I don’t know what it is I’m going for. Is writing a catharsis? Am I exorcising the demons? Am I examining my shadow as I come to know myself even more?
Or am I being negative, manifesting my dark energy? I acknowledge that I protect myself with a wall of cynicism. Should I break the patterns to head past my beloved anger and sadness? Do I use it for awareness and transformation of honesty and truth, or as a source for a comforting rant? Is this just another way to blow off steam, a different form of violence? Words hurt, too.
What is of more value? Discretion and trust. Or full disclosure because I BELIEVE honesty and truth should conquer all. Truth does conquer all because truth just IS. What is of more value? Discretion and trust. Or full disclosure because I BELIEVE honesty and truth should conquer all. Truth does conquer all because truth just IS.
I understand the Law of Attraction but it always ends up feeling like suspended animation to me. It ends feeling like fluff. The substance has to be there, and it’s not. I need the pain, and the blood and guts. It is like the moment when Wile E Coyote realizes he will fall but he is suspended midair.
In some dreams, I am learning to fly. It’s more like sailing on air currents. I’ve spent quite a lot of time in the airfield aside my grandmother’s place in the dark of night. There is no room for doubt when you are learning to fly. You have to practice the continuity of intention. In some dreams I have it mastered. In the latest, I’m trying to figure out exactly how it works.
I understand the Law of Attraction. Not too long ago I was sleeping when all of my chakras began to spin. Every vortex revolved counterclockwise to the two it was near. I understood I could manifest anything I wanted at this moment. I did not have the courage because I knew I would have it. I did not manifest because I did not know what I wanted.
The Law of Attraction is witchcraft. Both manifest intention. The only difference is one uses folklore tools. I prefer to have the materials to reinforce the intentions. It makes it real. It plants it in the physical. Years ago, I climbed across the flowing river to a rock in the center with a burnt candle and a drawing of the Eye of Horus. I spoke an Egyptian spell and I sent it down the river. How dark the sky was that day, though it did not rain! The blacks and grays are etched much deeper like an Instagram shot. No one but me and the magic know that day and I can’t take you there.
I have sage plants growing in patio containers in the backyard.
Stacks of clothes. Stacks of books. Detoxing from the weekend. A reverberating in my mind. He sang, “Why can’t we be friends?” just before he left. But a thick shell has formed around me, a psychic shell.
Three or four possibilities churning around in my noggin for the summer. I must see a man about a horse.
Not sure how to manifest the dreams of the mystic. If they aren’t elusive are they mystical still? How do I make the dreams come true when the dreams are of wandering in the woods and learning to ride currents of air? How does one support such endeavors.
Oh God! May I keep my heart open, but Oh God may I keep my mind open even more!
The devil has immense wings! The devil has powerful legs and cloven hooves.