Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Dear Penpace,

I have the restlessness of the recovering. Pacing the cage with no where definite to go or direction to set off in. A vague apprehension I've missed the planting season and won't have anything to yield come harvest. Thus assuring me doom. My interior castle took on water. There was a violent storm and the girl in gold has collapsed, luckily face up in the water. The other girl on the steep mountain had to come down to assure the one in gold she was going to be ok. But it's not clear on how much was understood since she was unconscious.

Besides strange dreams and landscapes, I've slept through the night the last few. The trajectory of the downslope- gross things about slightly pitted skin, scabs and copious amounts of ointment...not whincing and saying breath prayers for unconsciousness. And besides photographing the journey, I'm reading a historical romance- a monk forbidden love a girl named celia- centuries later the two come together again... to contrast i'm also reading a book on chaos theory. I've just got through the section on fractals and now we're talking fluid dynamics and the problem of turbulence. Reminds me of when i was in school and the constant exchange of ideas were swirling around me. Ah, nevermind. Let's not romanticize learning and school. Pshaw.

As a sidenote have you tried ear protection for when you vacuum? Or mow the lawn. Or even noise canceling headsets... I have a pair and it does make it all better. They really should make those things more stealth like. It's enough that my computer has a loud hum to it and when i leave my dvd player plugged in it cycles on and whirrs. Most annoying.

Well nevermind. I'm full from pineapple and am vaguely sympathetic about the fish situation and obviously at this moment sort of glad to be single. The whole thing sounds terrifying. And also speaking of animals Mortimer hasn't quite got the hang of the hunting thing. I mean he caught a mourning dove and it looked like it was bearing up under its death well but sort of humiliated by the presence of Marley who clearly thought Mortimer was bungling the job. Which he was-- trying to bite at it, while it was still quite alive and not finishing the bird off fast and efficiently. Feathers everywhere. All of it unsightly. And i feeling as if i'd come to late to be of any use but to shake my head at the whole state nature and the fall. I apologized to the bird all day.


Monday, May 30, 2011

Sunday, May 29, 2011

current conclusions -

I’m over the fish tank.Why did I replace it. I don’t want to clean it. It’s a pain in the ass. Verging on an eyesore. I kind of secretly wish the fish would die peaceably and then I can be done with the whole fishy affair. But they’re so damn hardy, those five remaining fish. Ugh.

I love oak trees. Spring, fall, dead of winter – doesn’t matter. Hands down the best tree shape and really it’s my favorite ever. Oak.

I’m also an idiot. Because for a few months now I’ve been all, I would love an oak tree for the yard! Wouldn’t that be cool to watch it grow. And while I was mowing today I realized the two young trees in our backyard are oak trees. Duh. It’s kind of like the lavender discovery, only less serendipitous than stupidly obvious.

Occasionally I wonder why any of us ever have children. Okay, maybe not everyone – allegedly there are people out there who love children. I’ve seen these people. They do exist. And I wish I was one of them. I mean – I love my children. Of course I do. But half the time I don’t know what to do with them, and the other half they’re vexing me with their noise and their needs.  And in-between those halves I feel like I am penning their therapy pages. Bleh. Children.

I feel like it’s probably time for a change in routine so maybe I won’t feel that way about children. Because I don’t always. Just right now, the feeling is very strong.

Bourbon and ginger isn’t bad. I’m not sure it’s awesome. I’m not drinking any right now, but I did try some yesterday evening. Much sweeter and less a chest-hair tonic than I ever imagined.

Mowing the lawn trumps vacuuming every time. I hate vacuuming. But I also hate mowing in the oppressive heat, which makes my face turn reddish-purple. In spite of how much cold water I drink. And then every member of my household harasses me about said purple face. Which annoys me. Especially having just toiled in the hot sun.

A lot of things annoy me.

I’m even annoyed by it being nearly midnight. And I feel neither sleepy nor accomplished, considering the day gone by. Many undone things loom over my head. Annoying. But that’s all I’ve got for now.

irritatedly yours,


Saturday, May 28, 2011

Dear Grain,

Why are you breaking up with us? We had something good. I mean there were good times weren't there? It's not just that you were one of only 3 people who read the blog, though we noticed you really hadn't been reading much of late. And since november it was true you didnt have much to say longer than a sentence update in that other place we won't mention. I suppose we should've said something then. I'd glance to see if it updated but the days went longer and longer and then well- i guess I always thought you'd pop back on with an apology and renewed vigor. It's my fault for not seeing it sooner. For not reaching out. You never really loved us the way we loved you. Is that fair? No. I know. But I guess its one of those things- we've grown apart. Started living separate lives. And now you don't have anything to say to us. We used to love your stories though. Your thoughts about things and your struggles. With or without work. We're going to miss you. I guess it's the final thread and its good of you to decisively chop it off and not let it linger. Not pretend you're ever going to come back with promises and maybes. You've changed. You've moved on without us and aren't looking back. But it came as a bit of shock. We plead, we say- it's different. It's a different voice these enterprises you've embarked on... but then i stopped writing out of the blue and i suppose you have every right to not blog. But still. It's a blow. One less voice over the wires and plastic keys. A death. let's call it that. We've lost the thread of history. I know it's melodramatic. But it's true. A human story in minuitia wiped out and given way for very important things, only big arcs now and coded language. Blogging used to be a fad and a craze and we've hung on out of lunacy or quirk or maybe we both need to see how long we can last. Until blogspot closes or we die maybe? Until we print all the pages and make a tome of all the priceless words. Until we're the very last ones. Ok, you're right. We can make new friends. Friends come and go though. Like Kurt and Horace who died of old age. We miss them still and it's hard to go on sometimes. To keep saying what you have to say even though no one cares. But anyway. Nevermind.

Goodbye dear blog whom we've known for at least 5 years or more. I would go back to check but it doesn't exist anymore. It was as if... and then... So here's to you, no more to have such insight, you have faded back into time, like a star extinguished, reached us finally only years too late, and then gone.

To see a world in a grain of sand,
And a heaven in a wild flower,
Hold infinity in the palm of your hand,
And eternity in an hour.... WB.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Dear Bruckner,

I have suspended the husband search- as it's true being at the end of week one- only 1 of 3-5. I could be enveloped in this meloddrama for a month more. I mean, you know you're life has taken a turn when you think, i can't wait till blisters stop erupting from my skin and dreading the unholy after effects and pleading for everything to scab over quickly as that will be at least be cool and interesting opposed to sensing some alien presence breeding on your back, waiting for the ooze and trying to explain to friends exactly what fiberglass in the skin feels like as pulses of haywire nerves make you whince like you've just been hit by a stray dart. But nevermind.

You mentioned in your letter you had thought due to the number of ailments someone else had taken over my blog moniker. Being self-analytical and neurotic are not good combos for when one becomes sick is all i'm saying. I do not handle it well. I do not have what you would call fortitude, especially if I feel whatever brought upon me is undeserved or over the top. But this year- only 4 months in was quite a doosey? doozy? i don't know. But 1. the cold that over took my camping trip in january 2. the wretching nightmare that almost made me miss chicago 3. my dog died in march 4. the death cold of april has lead straight into the 5. plague of may. not to be outdone by anal fissures sometime between 4 and 5. All of it heralded by a malaise lasting clear in from Novemberish and reaching a bad pitch in through early spring? Well what to do. One should make a story of peppercini seeds landing in your eye- as novelists it would be symbolic for life and some ironic twist that makes you see yes, the absurd, the random pain of life, take that. But the novel is becoming literal. They'd say, that's too much. Or I'd say, I'm going to make a comedy out of it. I may get there. I may make it to the frown upside down-- if i were writing.

One will just have to wait and see. But I take your point Bruckner. It's writing in the minuitia opposed to pulling out and developing an arc. A true arc of suffering or of comedic prat falls which say something, which tell you something. It's not just throwing stones in a pit or watching someone bail water from a sinking skooner 50ft from shore. My god my character has got to learn something. There has to be some-Thing behind all of this. Something funny and a bit pathetic in the character hunched over on a wooden box with a bag of frozen corn to her back.

Don't pay attention to her self-pitying demonstrance and her pleas for attention. It won't work. It simply won't work. This girl has a pie in the face coming or she's going over the waterfall in a barrel. She just wants to make sure someone's watching. Just give her a glance out of the corner of your eye and look the other way. That'll be enough.


Tuesday, May 24, 2011

for your amusement only -

Because I know you’re just suffering at the moment. With your shingles. Have you tried cold compresses? Ibuprofen? Weeping silent tears?

Anyway. I’m growing out my hair – part rebellion, part fear re: new town and new hairdresser situation. Can’t go there yet. So sometimes I like to pin it up. Usually when it’s hot. Which it is, all this week. Hot and stormy.

I also saw some lightning in the sunset-sky. And heard some super-loud, house-rattling thunder that nearly gave Bailey a panic attack. Actually, it really might have been a panic attack. She’s not as young as she used to be.

Here’s my pinned up hair. And the incorrigible but fabulous K.Lo. And oh, since I’m sitting at my desk – let’s have a look at your birthday present!



I found him. Jesus, I mean.

One of these days I’ll get to the post office and you shall have him.

Here’s the dusky sky. Sadly, not the best lightning of the evening, but I did capture a bit of it nonetheless.


And now I’m going to bed.





Sunday, May 22, 2011


i think i have shingles. who doesn't love numbing, persistent, intermittenly prickly, stabbing and burning, discomfort to usher in their 35th year? i mean THAT or its a really painful allergic reaction. either way- as j.lo would say, WINNING!

who wants to see pictures?

Saturday, May 21, 2011

from under a twisty tree -

Have I mentioned I like the riverwalk?

And trees?

Especially twisty ones.

All of these are taken from the same spot. Up, down and around.




Thursday, May 19, 2011

do not look: warning! gross shingles pictures

if you want to see the progress from wednesday/thursday morning to monday here it is... it all started with little fiber glass prickles and then got horribly worse from there. pulsing localized pain to a band of burning. and its not getting better- i mean the blisters are just starting to appear and well... whatever. whatelse. i actually don't have the energy to go into it any further except to say it sucks. which can't even incapsulate how wronged i feel.

this is the heinousness in my left panty line...

Monday, May 16, 2011

but then I took this really cool picture of a butterfly

So let’s take a deep breath and shake off the ticks.

Butterfly! The hazy background was a fortuitous accident.


this is what I’m talking about -


Absolutely repulsive.

Particularly when they are, shall we say…well-fed. Picture a gray jelly bean. With 8 tiny hair-like legs that continue to move even though the rest of its body is basically a blood bladder. And what I suppose could be called a face, even though its really just a proboscis that exudes pure evil.

But one fell on the floor (from who? we check the dogs constantly). And I couldn’t not take a closer look.


Also, there’s a really sick picture here. In case mine don’t do justice.


Sunday, May 15, 2011

Drumroll please,

(I have for your witness a picture of danica taken in turkey from 2004. boo-YAH)

Friday, May 13, 2011

once upon a time,

On a 13th day of May, in a faraway land that was presumably very sunny, an M was born.

I wasn’t there for all that.

I was there many years later, in a windy city, in a class of 3, sometimes 4 students, containing one mysterious personage called mendacious.

You weren’t actually called that then. That would come later.

But surely there was nothing random about this intersection of lives. I blew in and out of that windy city in under a year. And me being fully submerged in my phase of complete reticence and somewhat fearful of the world – we might not even have talked much or hung out much during that time. But it didn’t stop me from being in awe of you, the Girl Who Wanted to be an Artist. With your curious short stories about dust motes and your sketchbook that transformed into another universe under your hand. Your astounding color choices. Your black and white photographs of a gerbera daisy engulfed in flames.

One day our teacher, not unlike Glenda the Good Witch, said, “You two girls will be friends for the rest of your lives.” And I think in that moment she made it so.

This girl not yet named M pursued me. Somehow made me answer the phone. And speak. And speak more. And say truthful things, laden with snark. We emailed. She made me blog. And keep blogging. She became M, and I Pen.

M wore down the concrete that lay over my head.

M is:


Among many other things.

And today is the anniversary of the day she entered into the world.

I’m thankful for you every day, my dear! May your 35th year unfold with wonder and energy and many opportunities to inform the world of your awesomeness. For you are, truly, a gift.

Happy Birthday, Mendacious.

all my love!


Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Dear Pen,

this is from monday night when i went to squeeze the peppercini on my chicken and it literally exploded in my face, drenching it and a seed landed in my right eye. it was good times. obviously.

bruckner brought up some very good points as he always does- i mean if i were talking about a journey of jobs he would be a blazing highlight and of unexpected friendships too (he shouldn't feel so left out that he's not a higher blip on the church journey- you're in there too but i just dont have the head space right now to tell that story)--

so before i continue i'll address one in an addendum as i hope he wont mind that they're in a letter to you- this pushing for freedom thing is curious and he brings up a somewhatvalid and well articulated point that i do feel some of my more ambitious friends agreeing with him and nodding vigorously. so i will not dispense my wrath just yet. the woman actually meant it in a spiritual and emotional context though and she was dead wrong as i'd been doing quite a lot to unchain and unshackle myself by the time i got to her, and she was being arrogant in assuming that because my path isn't stereotypical to the totality of spiritual health i must clearly still have ISSUES. which i don't remember being a pre-requisite for the program, to be clear of them- and if she had, in some way, meant it in the other sense she'd be wrong there to- as i was in fact risking quite a lot and pushing for something i thought on the job front would really bring me some fulfillment and i was flayed alive. there was some risk there. GAME OVER. it wasn't just school. this was going to be a future and a hope AND an adventure. and i didn't get it. i will say i've done very little in the last year since then.

now my friends who aren't me are saying yes, BUT what about everything else, and my answer to those types would be to say, then God has to change me. i'm open to it. one of the greatest things we're tyrannized by is trying to be something we are incapable of being. i wish i could be a networker. i wish i could reroute my circuitry to give a damn about quite a lot of things. do i need to guard against sloth and complacency? yes. have i fallen victim to them? totally. in addition to despair and hopelessness. but i cannot make myself into something i'm not. i dont have ambition. it would be one thing to have my sights on something as a target and walk away from it. or have completed something and stopped shy of launch out of fear. i dont think i've done that quite yet. i think the problem is i have all the pieces of what could be success and accomplishment and when jobs come across my path i apply. i walk toward them with interest if not passion. but that doesn't add up to someone who is going to be successful in a worldly sense. and its beyond frustrating to talk to people who are successful and they ultimately think, well you just didn't try hard enough. as if the millions who aren't famous actors right now, and ooze talent, oh, well it's their fault. they just didn't try. or if they did, just not long enough... and that is a total crock! my abilities do not need to translate into cash. i wish for my convenience they would but they don't need to. more on this later- there's a good essay my friend wrote about it. 

also lets keep in mind what i really want to be is a wife and a mother. i would pursue that with passion in a covered wagon across the plain, if i could. i have that in my sights and i want it. and yet. and even then people will say, you're just not trying hard enough to find a husband. now that's my fault to? now, back in the day it's true i wanted to be an author and an artist. and i am those things, but even then i didn't want to be "famous"- i thought, it would be nice to be known in a circle of people, of influence for the work i do. and there i suppose is where i've failed myself but with the usual excuses of moving slow and i did in the midst, climb a volcano, and create some jewelry whilst traveling here and there. but yes, he's right penelope that i do resist change and cling to comfort. but i can't say i feel very comfortable where i'm at.
but anyway i will take it all in a good hearted, we want the best for you sort of way. there is a fine line between waiting for opportunity to fall in your lap and looking for avenues of opportunity to pursue i suppose. and i have been terribly tired of looking down the lane.

anyway pen, i've got to get breakfast as i've gone on a bit too long per usual. so we'll just have to mindmeld about amazing race commentary, swimming on monday, unexpected meetings, traveling to the airport- for now laying out, a book and maybe-- 3 things from you just came up. what are they! i must go check.


This is SPACED, and it is mostly brilliant.

PLEASE go ahead and join the revolution:

free eps are now on HULU:

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Dear Bruckner,

Journeys also make for fine reading.
What sort of journey'ed tale did you have in mind? Mine is boring or if not quite boring mostly of the mind. For if truly we told the tale in concrete terms I've been sitting at this same desk for nigh on 2 years or more, with some jolts that may make it onto the scheme of life but otherwise my ass is sore as my bank account poor. The rest of the tale will not be so jaunty. It's like in that episode of 'Spaced' where daisy leaves this heartfelt note and the guys both go "skip to the ennnd". Just tonight when i was complaining and danica had to go make a frittata she said, skip to the end- i realize i struggle with encapsulating. Either I am completely cryptic or completely ridiculously longwinded. and even then i feel i'm missing something.

The journey to which you may be specifically alluding has to do with The Church. As somebody who has lately been studying the redemptive gifts i was identify'ed as RULER. It confirms every bossy impulse I've ever had. More on that later- But it also confirms how wrong this one particular person was in the worst interview I've ever had when she said I was waiting for life to happen to me (rulers totally don't do this. go manifest destiny! i am however waiting for something to rule.) and my essay told her nothing about me... my essay was about institutions and Rulers have serious issues with institutions as their principle is Freedom. We may or may not have a hard time respecting covenants and God-installed leadership. And so when my primary issues were with the Church, School and Family it really should've come as no surprise. It should've actually told her a lot. (It's near the anniversary of the Massacre.) I may or may not have to keep forgiving this woman in my mind who said i wasn't ready to help people and that I had to fight harder for freedom (as if its my initiative or strength that does the doing *snarf!)

But I digress. LIkE i said. S.T.T.E.

Anyway Bruckner, here is where the story starts (in vignettes) and it goes long.

1. the 20 something mom is bathing her daughter in the sink. she loves the light from the window. the daughter to this day loves the sink and likes to sit on the lip of it. the deep cool ceramic and the mint green tile. part of the mythology the mom is creating in the daughter is telling her this story: when you were a baby i was giving you a bath and i baptised you in the name of the father, in the name of the son, and in the name of the holy ghost. she motions with her hand the cupped water spilling over the infant head. and in that moment I felt the Lord heard me. i felt the Lord claim you as His. what the mom actually means is that, it was a special moment. but all she actually does-- she touches her heart to indicate the feeling. what the daughter believes, a divine anointing.

2. when the daughter was 3 she did not like DaddyLongLegs or worse yet, JuneBugs, that haunting buzzing thwacking sound. she remembers the fear of those particular bugs in her room. and her mom said, one night you screamed out really loud, I WANT GOD! the mom knows the Lord brought her to provide for the daughter and care for her. for she's the one removed the bug. the daughter sees it as a sign that God has long been instilled upon her heart. that she knew who was the utmost boss of her bossy self. from where does my help come from?!

3. when the daughter was 6 or so she was on the toilet talking to jesus. she was really worried she didn't have jesus' forgiveness. she really really wanted to make sure he loved her and accepted her. this worry was probably not unrelated to the fear she had of never passing each grade she was in. she felt irrespective of grades that something in the inbtw time of summer- something would go horribly wrong. am i saved jesus she'd ask? she'd hope yes yes yes. please FORGIVE me jesus. please love me.

4. along the way she became really upset at the devil. she remembers singing "if the devil doesn't like it he can sit on a tack!" she doesn't remember the rest of the song but here is part of it. i think it's appropriate the girl did not remember the joy part.

I've got the joy, joy, joy, joy down in my heart.
Where?  Down in my heart!
Where?  Down in my heart!
I've got the joy, joy, joy, joy down in my heart,
down in my heart
down in my heart to stay.

And if the Devil doesn't like it he can sit on a tack.
Sit on a tack.
Sit on a tack.
And if the Devil doesn't like it he can sit on a tack
Sit on a tack today.

at the time the girl was stomping vigorously upon the wood floor. and she probably said a great many other things but she and the devil? they're not friends. later she became convinced that everything that happened to her in high school was his attempt to get her to abandon jesus. she was not incorrect.

5. she also sang this song a lot, and just like the other one there's more to the song but this is all she sang, over and over until the neighbor across the street yelled out the door SHUT UP and slammed it shut. later in life he got hauled away in cuffs as the cops confiscated bags of dope and shotguns. the girl was watching through a slit in the blinds.

I love you, Lord, and I lift my voice
To worship you, Oh my soul rejoice!
Take joy, my King, in what you hear
May it be a sweet, sweet sound in your ear...

6. the daughter also got used to telling the mother a great many dreams. she's sorry that blurry eyed from sleep in the bathroom and sitting on the toilet with her mom trapped in the shower she did not write a lot of the dreams down. many of them however included casting out demons. they included black amorphous spaces. they included a pressing and a threatening feeling. she remembers being jealous of a girl who heard angel wings once in highschool.

7. she sat through over 600 chapels (every wednesday or so for 13 years).

But i was going to tell you about Church. I read scripture when i was young and i wore robes and lit candles. But wait, the mother recently said,

8. the daughter liked to sit up front. she liked to talk too and her mother drew her pictures and encouraged her to write notes back and forth instead. she doesn't remember much about sunday school. this is before she sat in back with her arms crossed with her friend crystal. she had a car and they often went to get fro-yo or tacobell during the sermon. but the girl does remember the steps down where the robes were kept. it seemed mysterious, musty and holy.

9. and despite not understanding church must = coffee, her pastor cursed her in a couple ways: when she was around 12 or so she really just wanted to be a secretary. the desk, the organization- she really liked it. it hadn't occured to her to be anything more or less at the time. he said, you could be something better than that. and one time after a whipped creampie fight in the new youth room he whispered in her ear, i'm really disappointed in you, and then later after all the youth had gotten into trouble because of her, don't be surprised if they hate you. (the mother heard what the pastor said and was not happy). and then, you can't babysit our kids anymore. and then at a confirmation class the girl was making a cross with a pencil, knife and rubberband- the pastor threw the knife across the room and yelled, how old are you?! FIVE!?

10. the girl stopped going to church.

11. but the girl often sung

Father, I adore You
Lay my life before You
How I love You
Jesus, I adore You
Lay my life before You
How I love You
Spirit I adore You
Lay my life before You
How I love You

but the dad saw the song tucked into the vizer of her car once and the girl was sad it could not ever be for him. (she knew the signlanguage version too. ) he didn't mention it as he slid it back into place and neither did she.

12. meanwhile the girl found her way to a christian acting company on the base of a presybterian church. the route would be obvious but i don't have time to tell you about school too. anyway, she learned to pray in small groups better, and thought look at all these people practicing their faith and they're actors... they were not however good at being friends. (she knows they were family in the middle there but she doesn't have time to talk about the acting company either). but waiting for a sunday matinee show to start one day a woman named elaine saw her and said she should come to church sometime. she held out for the better part of 3 or 4 years but eventually she decided to give it a go. she was mostly bored there too, but she did like the occasional bibleclass and from there she hopped around churches- went kayaking, read the bible all the way through a couple times, found interest in the old stories, went on a mission trip to Alaska (near disasterous as it was profound) moved to chicago, kept going to church, found more profound moments of forgiveness, volunteered to paint fences, tried and failed to find biblestudies that didn't make her cringe, helped a girl to found campus crusade on her grad campus quite accidentally, and after she made the decision at 18 that if this was her faith she needed to speak about it and tell her friends, she found that her friends did not answer back. she entered a desert and by 2003 told God that in no uncertain terms she was done with church if she didn't have a community. waste of time. she should've known that after asking for peace and losing one friend after another, with the idea that God was her anchor and no one else... she found peace but thought she didn't quite know the cost, she should be careful what she prayed for.

13. so that in the midst of reaching out one particular day she met a girl named danica childs who was wearing white with queer black bangs and piercing blue eyes and in charge of a team going to turkey. it was a sort of nonspecific trip the girl needed. no orphans, just a tour. she didn't need to fit into some passionate demonstrance. just go. watch. pray. and there it began.

14. then she met a couple new to the church, and somehow found her way into the best biblestudy she's ever known. it lasted 2 years and ended abyssmially. but in the meantime it was family and it was beautiful. they dined together. played laser tag. the girl read of her own accord one of her first christian non-fic books. she prayed on the sides at the end of church services. she found comfort in the din of the really loud band and the non-traditional service. she didn't have to cringe everyttime she heard liturgy. there wasn't any. she decided in obedience to become a  member of the church after 12 years of on and off attendence.

15. they even had an 80's prom. that was near the beginning of the end. when the church itself began to crumble from the inside. it split. it hemorraged. it was a massacre. but the 80's prom was one of her favorite memories so far in life. she was ok with never going to church again but she was caught up in a conversation and she couldn't leave it midsentence. she renounced her membership however.

16. so that in 2005 she left with her rebel band and started something new. she grows ever tired of hearing the word founder. the word it was all of us, not you, not just the 7 no. and here's where despite the blur in the middle, gets hot and jungle like and a bit intense. but it's late and i've grown tired. but there amidst the survivors were fellow pages whom she liked and actors whom she tolerated, and somewhere in there the word 'calling' came. because the girl suddenly found herself in a position of obedience over mere desire. and that's where the pressure became crushing. and the word community became some sort of harbinger. a struggle. a crying out and a pain.

17. and i could tell you between here and there the word hate was uttered, the absolute horror of entering the building, the anguish of attending, of negotiating people who were once for me became against me, being innundated, working for, friending, and in the midst helping to run the prayer team and at the time not really understanding what it meant or what it could be but gradually catching on until my ego was crushed and my spirit so low i had to leave it and slog through thank god on the mercy of friendships and duty.

18. and then around 2009 as a man named mick prayed long i was healed FROM the church as he said BY the church, as my spiritual guide at the time said, FOR the church.i wish i had the time to describe it. if you've read this far my dear bruckner you tell me and i'll write more- but suffice to say i might have doubled over laughing. i might have stood weeping and gasping at the profound thing that broke over me- the legalism, the hypocrisy, the cynicism, the hurt, and all the lies, authority, feeling small and marginalized and gaping wound at my foot... healed.

19. and today i'm tired. i try to carry things when i should let the Lord. and the girl who saw demons still sees them though by this point she may have seen a giant angel munching on something dark and squirming. i smiled. the girl, she prayer walks. she breathes. the water is deep and clear as it is mysterious as it is sometimes unknowable. but anyway she's been walking this road a long time. and she grows weary. not of the call which is light, assuring and its pursuit is straight. its the people obviously and the long way in which to get the natives to understand the language she's speaking. she pursues it because she must. and does not quite understand how she found her self here. or where she'll go next. this middle part she thinks will work itself out in a few encapsulated moments 20 years from now. and obviously the problem is her. and the problem is the devil too. and things get muddy when you hear too much of everything but the Lord. and its not so much the work i put into Him but the work He puts into me. and the working out of a relationship in which it is essential to trust. He calls me to it this mess the church. of humanity.

20. but to be specific, more on the journey of me and the prayer council at my church later... the rest of this is merely prelude.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

I can’t complain -

My natural inclination toward a holiday like Mother’s Day is just – no. Don’t give me presents and look at me. It’s nearly as bad as my birthday. I mean, not that moms shouldn’t be celebrated, because they really, really should. It’s the hardest job there is, and you don’t even get paid. And I do know quite a range of amazing mothers, including both mine and yours. But I reject anything faked or forced, as you know, and often take serious issue with societal conventions. I’m cursed with always seeing the shadows. Anyway – all that aside, today was a good day.

I had an omelet with sliced tomato on top. I was showered with flowers to plant in the ground. Three different sorts, and they are all relatively low-maintenance and attractive to butterflies. My card made me laugh. I watched a movie I hadn’t seen before on the Wiiflix that didn’t inspire much, if any, new cynicism. I walked and hiked and got a little lost in the green, green woods for a whole hour by myself. And ordered entirely too much food by mistake at the Mexican restaurant, but what I ate (chicken-tortilla soup with rice and avocado!) was good and the rest I took home. And it was all half-price bcs of the mom thing.

Success. I’ll take those lovely moments and put them in my pocket and bring them out to reminisce over on a rainy day.

Here’s some pictures from today and also one of Bender yesterday.

100_0721 (2)-1









Friday, May 6, 2011

no words really -

Just, my new tags. My license. I got them finally. There was obviously a reason I waited well past the limits of legality. Two children. A portal to Hell itself. Who wants to go there.

It only took 3 trips, 2 separate days, 2 separate DMVs on opposite ends of the earth, 2 horrible mug shots, a McDonald’s bribe and every scrap of patience in my possession to acquire said tags and license in their correct form. And I might have snapped at one point and nearly strangled the children. It’s entirely possible. It was DMV Trip Number 3.

Whatever. Check that shiz off the moving list. CHECK!


Thursday, May 5, 2011

Dear Bruckner,

Peril is thrilling.
There was a small room and a handful of writers. I told the professor, I'm afraid I'll never write again. She dismissed it, but I wasn't reassured. Perhaps I always knew there would come a'time when my imagination would lie fallow and be heralded into a different direction-- not forever but for a long while. Maybe the next 20 years? I can't be certain.

But imagine then if you can, a field of trees I was ordered to keep watered and primed in the meantime, a whole village in fact relying upon the water irrigation and me walking a long ways to see fields wilting set off running only to find a landslide- and my hands cramping, my mouth dry, the spade broken, clawing into the dirt and rocks with the sun blazing one last time before i collapsed. And then came a small stream, just enough to revive me...we still don't know about the village though.

Or better, more closer to the truth, it was an ordinary day. The girl parked the car in the shade. She saw a friends car and thought of missing the meeting and drinking coffeebean instead. But the girl didn't like coffee bean and ultimately you know meetings, they were expecting her. Little did she know.

The girl sat in the room with a glass of water, cross-legged on the couch.

And the other one, the dark one whose spirit screamed wrath, screamed hostility, told the girl that she loved her as if that was enough to make amends when the word spoken hollow had the air of a curse- and the conflict rising up surged against the girl as she sat silent, baffled and uncomprehending.

It followed her out of the house and there was an ominous stillness to the air. Her body leaned forward hunched by the weight of something, she didn't quite know what. But it had come over her, it was trying to over take her. She knew it the next day as a tickle came down her throat, as she violently was brought to her knee on the boulevard. The jalapeno in her eye mere mockery to what was threading all around her, trying as it were to choke and expire the very light within her.

Here she stood on a precipice, the edge crumbling, the earth giving way, and down down she went scraped and bruised to a ledge overlooking the dark space of nothingness sometimes called despair.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

and there were baby goats -

Alongside the back road I take to the library sometimes. So cute! The picture doesn’t really capture their awesomeness, and I admit I’m slightly disturbed by the choice of passage on the sign, if you zoom in. I see "Romans 1:27-28,” but I could be wrong. I do need bifocals as you know. Something about it gives me the shivers – like why, if you must post a verse? that one? And a slight worry re: pulling over to photograph and exclaim about said creatures. Like what kind of angry, sad soul dwells there, on the land with the baby goats.

But anyway – clouds, trees, grass and little baby goats with little horns. Love.


xo, pen

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

oh my -

How did we only do 8 posts in April? I mean it’s appalling. A bad month shouldn’t equal a reticent month, should it? Of course sometimes life is just too overwhelming to speak. But I really feel like messenger had something to do with it. The non-public portal of communication between pen & m. We truly must not deprive our reader(s).

So even though I’m spiraling into the depths of hormonal despair, I’ll post about My Very Eventful Life. I painted (with my mom’s help) the play room – flipping finally. It wasn’t just that the cave-like paneling needed to be addressed, it was that I had started to paint it cream months ago, decided I didn’t like it, purchased the sky blue, and then never did anything about it. So it was a half-painted eyesore. *shudders* Anyway, that and the magical red table and chairs. The last tabletop coat of which I just completed maybe an hour ago, and now it’s pouring, and I hope it doesn’t somehow blow onto the deck and ruin my finish. I could see that happening. Just because.

On a related note, it’s been windy for all of 2011. It’s not my location. It is just windy. I do occasionally wonder what that’s all about – and is it a portent. I suspect strongly that it is.

Tomorrow I have to clean up said paint project and somehow reattach the chair seats? Which are blue, but they work. Americana, yo. But how do they go back on? They were much easier to remove, I must say. The furniture set, I also feel worthy of mention, is an estimated 65 years old. My dad used to play under the table as a baby. Love.

I haven’t really exercised since November. Let’s be honest. No yoga. No cardio. Nothing. It’s sad. My joints and my jeans and my spirit are all feeling it. Today on a whim I took the kids on a wagon ride up and down a few hills. I felt like Rocky training in the mountains to beat the Russian. Hauling logs on my back. Rah. Seriously it the hardest damn workout I’ve done in a long while. That’s 70-some lbs. of children, you know. My heart might have taken a long while to calm down.

It’s entirely possible that I spend more time adding books to my goodreads and movies to my Netflix than I actually do reading and watching. It’s like I’m preparing for Someday, provided these luxuries and services still exist by the time I’m able to indulge for realsies. This also might be sad, but I’m not sure.

Also, I swear I need bifocals. Or reading glasses to supplement my contacts, whatever. Killer headaches. Eye strain. And bitterness. If it turns out to be true, I find it completely unfair.

And I broke my SHIFT key. Because breaking things is what I do.

I suppose that’s all for now – lest I tap myself out on words.

let’s pace ourselves

and make it a brilliant may,



As a testament to the darkness that has recently enveloped us I will point out April was our lowest blogging month in the history of our 6+ years blogging together. There was that one January where I thought taking a break would be a good idea and it only bred apathy but this 8 posts in April is just completely different. And one was recapping March and another was a prayer pleading for joy. Pretty bleak needless to say. Recently I got a letter from a concerned reader, which we will in the next week or so take on in a series of editorials about our current state of the blognation of mendacious and penelope. I do not know if I can promise to reveal and unfold everything but we'll do our best. I mean we only have a few readers anyway and its best not to alienate them.

In the meantime I have enjoyed the letters even if from time to time they are lost at sea or found months later clutched in the dead hands of some postal carrier in the desert. I dont know what he was doing there anyway.

I would say more but given our state this seems quite a lot, so why push it eh? The usual going to shower, go to pasadena, try not to complain about the lack of digestive enzymes in my bowels still applies for the day to day operations of me. Oh and I finished quilting phase1.

Chat you later.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Pen, Enclosed please find the following recap of April. I miss you.

Given how last month went I tried really hard to not succumb.
But there were a lot of snails. Thousands in fact. Our duck and possum are MIA. All sorts of tender things were getting eaten.

Despite that, I even went to a party. We read aloud from SVH books. We ate puppy chow and GF pizza.

And my friends after long last moved from an apartment after 11 years to a house.

And I, a few days in from a deathcold soaked, steamed, slept and coated myself in mud to no avail. I remind myself of one of those modern art statues. Does somebody know what I'm talking about. Sometimes its not so bad being heavy but I can't quite find rest here.

There were moments of peace but down I went. My physical and spiritual health declined. I came close to losing my voice.

I even defeated a creature called the Destroyer, but by then it seemed sort of a let down. I died 7 times before I figured it out. It felt good but then the game ended. I went to kill zombies afterward but somehow it just wasn't the same.

And I found this note in the church lot, and she wants to do an article. She says it warms her heart. Of course I heard people in a meeting today still want to cover it in concrete. She just doesn't understand it.

And my garden at home does look like this... I should spend more time there in btw the heat waves. It's glorious in a way I can't understand.

But mostly I feel like this in the midst of it. I just experienced deja vu writing that. Weird.

I did have a meditation on Thursday that had me in a castle under seige, and asking from where does my help come from? The blue sky was breathtaking. I was clothed in gold. But i was still waiting. I did have messanger doves to send notes...

In the field at balboa there were redwingedblackbirds dipping in out of the mustard. The sound of the grass whipping in the field was peaceful too. I suppose even though I must conclude that April was an epic fail in the arena of mental resiliance and inward peace and stamina- as i was mostly depressed and found none- there were signs of glory all around me. So i have to conclude my joy was not lost, just hard won.