Tuesday, December 18, 2012

...and invite them in.

The Guest House 
by Rumi

This being human is a guest house.
Every morning a new arrival.

A joy, a depression, a meanness,
some momentary awareness comes
as an unexpected visitor.

Welcome and entertain them all!
Even if they're a crowd of sorrows,
who violently sweep your house
empty of its furniture,
still, treat each guest honorably.
He may be clearing you out
for some new delight.

The dark thought, the shame, the malice,
meet them at the door laughing,
and invite them in.

Be grateful for whoever comes,
because each has been sent
as a guide from beyond.

Friday, December 14, 2012

Thou Art

Thou Art
12:40am, 14 December 2012, upon watching the Geminid meteor shower

Gazing up
I see that
Thou art
Thou art
Oh, Thou very art!

Thou art that Thou art.
And why not?
What other reason should there be?
Splendor, glory, beauty, grandeur, light, mercy...
What other why need be fulfilled?

Gazing in
I see that
I am
I am
Oh, would that I am!

I am that I am.
And why not?
What other reason should there be?
Noble, imperishable, hidden, treasured, rebellious, awe-struck...
What other why need be fulfilled?

Wednesday, December 5, 2012


I have this weird idea that "not unique" means "not challenging."

I shared this thing in my therapy group today that to me feels very big and bad and I have shame around. And someone said (totally from a good place, my reaction is all me) that it didn't seem that different than an activity that a lot of normal people do very regularly and is not at all seen as unusual.

What I heard was "this is just your slightly different way of expressing this common human trait." Which is probably fairly close to what he was trying to say. But then I continued to extrapolate to "therefore, shut up and get over it, everyone deals with this. You wuss."

I've just come from group, and I'm still processing. A lot. A lot of processing. About a lot of stuff. But I wanted to get this thought written before I lose it.

I am both more and less special than I think I am.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Renaissance Constellations

In my head, Renaissance Festivals are like constantly morphing constellations.

Take this idea as a base, but don't get too stuck on it:

In my head, the artists and performers and vendors and musicians and street cast and administrators... all the people that make up a Faire, are little dots of light, that are constantly swarming around the country in ways that look random until you watch a specific light for a while, and then you see a pattern.

Within the thousands of patterns, sometimes many dots will converge in one place, and stay there making a very bright energetic shining light together for a weekend, or several weeks, or even a month or two. And then suddenly the individual dots burst apart from their convergence, like fireworks, until they converge somewhere else; some of the same dots meet again in convergence after convergence, some a few times, and some only once or twice.

I like to think of the of Renaissance Faires as a constant fireworks display of creative energy.


My therapist commented today on how much more I am opening up, how much more I am allowing myself to be vulnerable.

She said even my body language and facial expressions were so much more open and flexible.

I felt embarrassed and naked.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Regret Nothing

Dorianne Laux

Regret nothing. Not the cruel novels you read
to the end just to find out who killed the cook.
Not the insipid movies that made you cry in the dark,
in spite of your intelligence, your sophistication.
Not the lover you left quivering in a hotel parking lot,
the one you beat to the punchline, the door, or the one
who left you in your red dress and shoes, the ones
that crimped your toes, don't regret those.
Not the nights you called god names and cursed
your mother, sunk like a dog in the livingroom couch,
chewing your nails and crushed by loneliness.
You were meant to inhale those smoky nights
over a bottle of flat beer, to sweep stuck onion rings
across the dirty restaurant floor, to wear the frayed
coat with its loose buttons, its pockets full of struck matches.
You've walked those streets a thousand times and still
you end up here. Regret none of it, not one
of the wasted days you wanted to know nothing,
when the lights from the carnival rides
were the only stars you believed in, loving them
for their uselessness, not wanting to be saved.
You've traveled this far on the back of every mistake,
ridden in dark-eyed and morose but calm as a house
after the TV set has been pitched out the upstairs
window. Harmless as a broken ax. Emptied
of expectation. Relax. Don't bother remembering
any of it. Let's stop here, under the lit sign
on the corner, and watch all the people walk by.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Super Powers and Kryptonite

This shame group thing is intense, man.

Tonight we touched on the idea that most shame in most people comes from either their super powers (their gifts and talents) or their kryptonite (their struggles or vulnerabilities).

I don't enjoy airing my vulnerabilities, but I don't find it overwhelming, either. Or at least, not for the most part; there are a few that make me nauseated to even think about talking about.

The thing that pretty universally shames me is naming my gifts. I find it unbearable to say "I am creative, I am intelligent, I am..." Wow, I had to stop there because even writing that first made me tear up and then brought me to absolute freeze when I attempted to add a third item.

In the group tonight, as a closing exercise, the therapist asked us each to speak out loud an affirmation about ourselves. I couldn't do it in front of the group but I said that I would say one out loud to myself once I was alone at home. Haven't done it yet.

What is so darn intolerable about admitting there is greatness in myself?

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

My Shame

I'm taking an 8-week course about shame; about how it's based on fear and blame and disconnection and can be overcome with courage, compassion, and connection. It's based on Brene Brown's work, who I think is an amazing lady. 

In the first class there was talk about the importance of recognizing one's own shame triggers, so that in the moment of experiencing shame you can understand better what's going on and why you are reacting to things the way you are. In the interest of building the courage and connection parts of breaking shame, here are some of my recent/current shame triggers:

weight/body image
impulsive spending
food choices
exercise choices
outsourcing "my" work (ie, cleaning and cooking)
dental hygiene 

Interesting point: this post has been sitting open for about 10 minutes now, waiting for me to get the courage to press the "publish" button...

Thursday, August 2, 2012


I've decided I want some simple direction in my life. I tend to be a really fluid and laid back kind of person; there are a lot of things I like about that but sometimes it can manifest as me being uncommitted or unmotivated, which I'd like to change. So here is an idea I've come up with.

I took some time to look at what is really important to me in terms of my values and my wants. At first it was pretty overwhelming, but I came to realize that really it boils down to four main priority categories:

God (my religious and spiritual practice)
Family (both biological and not)
Health (my own mental and physical health), and
River Breeze Wellness (my health counseling business).

Every day I intend to do at least one thing to strengthen each of these categories. It doesn't have to be a big thing, but something that increases the health of the priority. For example, one day I might make sure I do a meditation in the morning (God), call my grandmother in Florida (family), go for a walk (health), and check in with my school's website to catch up on what other students are up to (River Breeze Wellness). Of course, some days my activities might be bigger, like giving a nutrition workshop to feed my River Breeze Wellness priority, or spending several hours with my nieces and nephew. And some days I might do several things in one or more of the priority areas.

I also plan to look at my daily activities in light of these priorities and ask myself some questions about them.
How does this thought/behavior/action effect my priorities?
Does this thought/behavior/action feed one of my priorities?
Does this thought/behavior/action negatively impact my priorities? If so, is it truly necessary? If not, drop it. If it is necessary, how can I change it to reflect my priorities?
If this thought/behavior/action seems to have a neutral effect on my priority areas, is it worth putting my energy into it?

I like how kind of simple and basic this feels; just keep four things in mind as I live my life. And yet, I think it could have some pretty profound impacts.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Anonymous Letter of Frustration

(Note: this letter does not necessarily represent the views of the author when she isn't quite upset.)

Dear Someone;

There was a time when you answered my texts.
There was a time when I told you of a problem and your answer was more than "I'm sorry that is happening."
There was a time when you still insisted on being heard, but balanced it with listening.
There was a time when both your actions and words showed that you cared.

If now is no longer that time, please at least stop pretending it still is.
Frustrated and Annoyed,

Monday, June 18, 2012

The Care And Feeding Of Me

Someone asked me today (via email) how I support myself emotionally and mentally. It was an interesting exercise to break that down into some clear and solid points, so I thought I'd share my response.

- I do individual and group therapy (and have for many years).

- I make sure I keep a good balance of alone time to social time (I'm definitely an introvert, I need my alone time to feel stable).

- I stay away from processed sugars, gluten, red 40 food dye, dairy, and caffeine and I limit my intake of unprocessed/natural sugars (except for whole fruit), and other food additives (it's the red 40 that effects me most, though).

- I make sure I get good quality sleep and plenty of it.

- I meditate/pray daily. I find this grounding and reminds me of my ideals and that there is a higher power at work.

- I feel good when I know that I am being of service to someone; even if it's just something like leaving an extra-good tip for a waiter, I know I made a positive difference in the world.

- I try to get in a walk or some yoga (or any other form of exercise, but those are the two easiest for me right now) every day, even if it's only 10 or 15 minutes

- I'm really working on self acceptance; being ok with who I am and where I'm at and not comparing myself to anyone else, or any ideals.

- I take Vitamin D and B-12 and sometimes a multi-vitamin daily.

Saturday, June 9, 2012

John Trexler

Thinking of my friend and fellow Renaissance musician, who passed away this evening following a bike accident.

Listen to the story told by the reed,
of being separated.
"Since I was cut from the reedbed,
I have made this crying sound.
Anyone apart from someone he loves
understands what I say.
Anyone pulled from a source
longs to go back.
At any gathering I am there,
mingling in the laughing and grieving,
a friend to each, but few
will hear the secrets hidden
within the notes. No ears for that.
Body flowing out of spirit,
spirit up from body: no concealing
that mixing. But it's not given us
to see the soul. The reed flute
is fire, not wind. Be that empty."
Hear the love-fire tangled
in the reed notes, as bewilderment
melts into wine. The reed is a friend
to all who want the fabric torn
and drawn away. The reed is hurt
and salve combining. Intimacy
and longing for intimacy, one
song. A disastrous surrender
and a fine love, together. The one
who secretly hears this is senseless.
A tongue has one customer, the ear.
A sugarcane flute has such effect
because it was able to make sugar
in the reedbed. The sound it makes
is for everyone. Days full of wanting,
let them go by without worrying
that they do. Stay where you are
inside sure a pure, hollow note.
Every thirst gets satisfied except
that of these fish, the mystics,
who swim a vast ocean of grace
still somehow longing for it!
No one lives in that without
being nourished every day.
But if someone doesn't want to hear
the song of the reed flute,
it's best to cut conversation
short, say good-bye, and leave.
A craftsman pulled a reed from the reedbed,
cut holes in it, and called it a human being.
Since then, it's been wailing a tender agony
of parting, never mentioning the skill
that gave it life as a flute.


Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Relationship Responsibilities

I've believed for a while now that how I react to things is all about me, and not about the stimulus. And the opposite: how someone else reacts to things (even if that thing is me) is all about them, and not about the stimulus. At some point, though, that stops being entirely true. I mean, even though I'm totally not responsible for other people's emotions and behaviors, it's still not ok for me to go around slapping people and calling them rude names. Those two things are clear to me. What hasn't been very clear is where that line is, or how to figure out where that line is.

So tonight in my group therapy we were listening to a CD of a woman sharing some of her ideas about boundaries and how they get set and that kind of thing, and I was struck with the inspiration for a bit of a formula for figuring out my dilemma.

If I am in a relationship with someone (any kind of relationship: significant other, friend, relative, customer service/customer, whatever) and some stimulus that I give creates a response in them that they don't like (and of course, the vice versa is true as well), there are four options:

1. We (or one of us) can decide we will no longer continue the relationship.
2. I can decide that I am willing to change my stimulus-action.
3. The other person can decide they are willing to change the beliefs they hold that result in the feeling/thought/behavior reaction that they don't want.
4. We can decide that it's a livable issue and agree it doesn't need to be addressed further.

Note: I don't think it's necessary to discuss this in every relationship. If I don't like the way the cashier at the grocery store speaks to me, I'll just put up with it for the 3 minutes I have to deal with her (as long as it's not abusive or whatever, of course), and then probably choose to avoid her line in the future. That's me deciding first number 4 (I can live with it for now) and then number 1 (I won't continue the relationship). Things like that, I don't think need to be talked about. But in deeper relationships, I think discussion might be important.

It's helpful for me to have this kind of framework for where two ideas meet in a very fuzzy way, so I thought I'd share in case it turns out to be helpful for anyone else.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Mother's Day

Mother's Day is kind of a bittersweet day for me. To observe this one, I spent some time at the cemetery.

This is my mom's grave. Sometimes I think my relationship with her is better now. I know that she doesn't have things like ego and judgment anymore, and that makes it easier to let go of mine sometimes when I pray for her or think of her.

She loved purple.

I spent a while there by her grave, praying and thinking and getting a bit teary sometimes. There was a moment when I felt intensely loved, a love that extended to both my brother and I. I had the strong feeling that I should call my brother and let him know about it, which I will do as soon as I finish writing this.

At one point a thought came to me, apropos of nothing that I had been thinking, that I should take one of the tulips for myself, as my own Mother's Day Flower.

This is my son's grave, just a few meters from my mother's. Mothering doesn't stop just because you can't hold your child.

After spending some time at Kahlil's grave, I got up and walked around a bit. I helped an older woman find the grave she was looking for. I saw an extended family having a cookout around a grave. I saw two children playing tag while nearby a middle-aged man was sobbing into an elderly woman's arms. I don't know what the truth there is, but what I saw was a grieving father comforted by his mother, glad but still somehow hurt that his children either don't remember or have somehow moved on.

Loss is universal, but I wouldn't exchange the honor of being my mother's daughter or my son's mother, for anything.

Saturday, May 5, 2012


I've recently been reminded of how many kids want to just be kids, but because of prejudice or judgment or abuse or neglect never really get to just hang out in the world in joyful innocence. So I'm gonna post a few pictures here of kids I've known who are absolutely gorgeous in every way, but have extra struggles in their lives.

Next time you see a kid who doesn't adhere to your idea of beauty, or behaves in a way that you might not understand, or interacts in a way that's not what you are used to... stop and take a minute and realize all they wanna do is be kids, and they deserve to be loved for it.

Eating Well

I've been trying for a while to figure out ways to eat well for my body while I work on convincing myself that cooking isn't a horrible odious task (which kinda might take a while). For me, eating well means only natural sugars (and not many of those), gluten free, largely dairy free, and very little processed food. Here is my current strategy:

  • I found a local food service that delivers premade gluten-free, sugar-free, 80% or more organic/pesticide free meals once a week. All I have to do is heat them up; they even come with instructions! They have a minimum amount for delivery, which it turns out takes care of most of my lunches and dinners for the week.
  • I have fruit, rice cakes, and a few snack-chips sorts of things for snacks.
  • Breakfast has still been a bit of an issue (I'm even lazier in the morning than usual!) so I just went and bought fruit salad and smoothie ingredients, a few gluten-free cereals and coconut milk, gluten-free bread (really only good as toast, imo, 'cause it's rather dry), eggs, and bacon. My idea here is to find a time when the kitchen doesn't seem quite so unpleasant an idea and go ahead and make up the bacon, fruit salad, and a smoothie, to save in the fridge (somehow eggs don't seem very savable and the cereal is kinda already done). 
  • For those times when for some reason I really want to eat out (I sometimes really like the feeling of sitting at a table and being served, it suits my "nurture me now" side), I have gotten myself a gift card to a delicious raw cafe that is near me. Somehow having the giftcard makes me more inclined to eat there, since the money is already spent. There is also a decent Thai restaurant just up the road (I haven't asked them about gift cards yet). My idea is to try to stick to those two places for eating out (when I'm on my own; social adventures are different). 
So that's my idea. It seems kind of fool proof so long as I exercise a little will power, but I am known for being stubborn when it comes to bettering myself! 

Saturday, April 28, 2012


 I've just had a realization that I live surrounded by and filled with fear, and that while I trust myself and the world on a material level (mostly), I dont at all on an emotional level.

That's all I have to say about that right now, but it seemed important to get it written down and out into the world.

Friday, April 20, 2012


God Says Yes to Me

By Kaylin Haught
I asked God if it was okay to be melodramatic
and she said yes
I asked her if it was okay to be short
and she said it sure is
I asked her if I could wear nail polish
or not wear nail polish
and she said honey
she calls me that sometimes
she said you can do just exactly
what you want to
Thanks God I said
And is it even okay if I don't paragraph
my letters
Sweetcakes God said
who knows where she picked that up
what I'm telling you is
Yes Yes Yes

Friday, March 30, 2012


So, I just went to the doctor (where I found out I have pneumonia, but that's not the point here). When I need a regular Western doctor I just go to a clinic down the street, so these people don't know me or anything.

As they do, my nurse asked about the scars on my arm. I told her "I used to self injure." Most medical professional then ask how long it's been, and/or if I'm in treatment. I tell them "3 or 4 years" and "Once a week therapy" and that is that. Fair enough.

But today when I said "I used to self injure" the nurse said, "Oh, is that emo?" I said "...I'm sorry?" She said "Emo. Isn't cutting yourself called emo?" So then I had to 'splain to her "Actually, emo is a stereotype. One that a lot of people in my position would find offensive. Self injury, on the other hand, is a psychological disorder." She stopped asking. 

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Regret Nothing

by Dorianne Laux

Regret nothing. Not the cruel novels you read
to the end just to find out who killed the cook.
Not the insipid movies that made you cry in the dark,
in spite of your intelligence, your sophistication.
Not the lover you left quivering in a hotel parking lot,
the one you beat to the punchline, the door, or the one
who left you in your red dress and shoes, the ones
that crimped your toes, don’t regret those.
Not the nights you called god names and cursed
your mother, sunk like a dog in the livingroom couch,
chewing your nails and crushed by loneliness.
You were meant to inhale those smoky nights
over a bottle of flat beer, to sweep stuck onion rings
across the dirty restaurant floor, to wear the frayed
coat with its loose buttons, its pockets full of struck matches.
You’ve walked those streets a thousand times and still
you end up here. Regret none of it, not one
of the wasted days you wanted to know nothing,
when the lights from the carnival rides
were the only stars you believed in, loving them
for their uselessness, not wanting to be saved.
You’ve traveled this far on the back of every mistake,
ridden in dark-eyed and morose but calm as a house
after the TV set has been pitched out the upstairs
window. Harmless as a broken ax. Emptied
of expectation. Relax. Don’t bother remembering
any of it. Let’s stop here, under the lit sign
on the corner, and watch all the people walk by.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

One Month Sugar Free

Today is my 29th day sugar free (OK, so not quite a month, but close enough)!

I do still have some cravings, but they are infrequent and mild. Often when I think about eating something specific, though, the idea is unpleasant and I find I don't actually want to eat sweets. I think I just still have an idea that I want that kind of stuff. The other night, actually, I had a sugar cookie and it made me ill (literally). My body now recognizes that processed sugars aren't good for it, and will do something about it!

Putting aside the fact that I currently have a cold, I am feeling really good. I am more clear headed and motivated. I have lost 14 pounds in the 30 days (and all I really changed was not eating sugar and sweeteners) and I am getting fewer headaches.

While I have had a few days of low energy/ depression during the past month, it was directly attributable to an event and it only lasted a couple days (versus a week or two of indeterminate-origin depression, which is how my depression usually manifests).

I have candida rashes under my arms which are almost completely gone now. When they totally disappear, I will add moderate amounts of natural sugars back into my diet (ie honey, agave, occasional brown rice syrup or evaporated cane juice, fruit juices, et cetera) but I intend to stay away from processed and artificial sweeteners altogether.

Monday, March 5, 2012

Two Weeks Sugar Free

As of today I am 14 days sugar free! (Except I had a glass of Dr. Pepper twice, and about 4 bites worth of agave-sweetened raw-food dessert at a holiday party.)

It's been quite a struggle at times, and it's been really interesting to learn how much I rely on sugar as a mood stabilizer and booster. I find myself thinking things like "Man, I feel lonely, I need a cookie," which works in the short term for feeling better, but doesn't address the issue at all. I can see the silliness of it, but it doesn't make me want the cookie any less! Instead though, I'm learning to do other things to address my emotion needs, including just feeling the feeling and realizing it's just a part of being human and that it won't actually hurt me.

Some things that have been helping me out in this process:

  • I have a sugar-free buddy. We quit sugar at the same time (actually, she is a day ahead of me) and we message each other online every morning and evening (and often in between!) for support and cheer leading and as a bit of accountability. That's been really great for me; I honestly don't think I would still be sugar-free without her.
  • I have hypoglycemia and I noticed that if I have a small bit of unsweetened fruit juice in the mornings the rest of the day is a lot easier. I think it might be that my hypoglycemic body needs a little sugar jump-start in the mornings after the night's fasting, just to get things kinda evenly keeled. 
  • I'm not sure if this is a contributor, but for the past 2 days I've been drinking alkaline water and for those two days I have had fewer cravings. 
  • I am reading a lot of articles and books (I especially recommend the book "Sugar Blues" by William Dufty) about why sugar is so bad for humans, and its history. It's been good to have these constant reminders of why I am doing what I am doing for myself.

Friday, March 2, 2012


Sometimes I get frustrated and I just have no idea why. Maybe irritable is a better word, but whatever it is it makes me both want company and be bad company all at the same time. I try doing things to alleviate the feeling, but nothing I do is quite "right" somehow.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Raised Red Scars

I have recently had what I think is my first experience of truly disliking my self injury scars (I have quite a few, and I do not bother to hide them). Generally I feel pretty neutral about them; I don't feel shame that I chose an unhealthy coping mechanism for part of life. In fact, I am glad that I managed to come up with a method that kept me alive; I really believe that without the release of self injury (in the absence of healthier coping mechanisms) I would not be alive today.

Most of my scars are white, either raised or flat. Some, however, have healed a pinkish-red. I haven't looked into the science of why, but I do know that some scars just do that. The problem is, it makes them look as if they are newish. In fact, a friend who I haven't seen in a while recently wondered aloud if those scars did represent newer injuries. My therapist asks every year when I begin to wear short sleeves in the spring, if the redder scars on my upper arm are new. 

They aren't. It's been a long, long time; so long I'm not even sure of how long. It bothers me for several reasons that people think I might have recently been or currently am self injuring. The biggest two are:

For one thing, I am proud that I'm not hurting myself any more. When people think I am, it messes with that.

Also, I know what a worry it can be, and how hurtful it can be, to have someone in your life who is self injuring. I don't want the people I care about to feel like this is an ongoing concern. 

It's been an interesting experience, disliking some of my scars. I suppose I'll be working on making peace with them, and finding the beauty in them, as one does with any body part they aren't too fond of. 

Monday, February 20, 2012

So True...

I totally agree. But then the question becomes, how do you manipulate how you see yourself?

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Great Things

New places

Old friends

My kindle

Knitted mice

Monday, January 23, 2012

Sugar As Safety, Part II

Remember when I wrote this post?

It might sound kind of elementary, but I've just realized that if eating sugar means safety to me, and I am driven quite often to eat sugar... that must mean I often don't feel safe. Whoa.

Not sure what to do with that revelation yet, but there it is.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Great Things


French Silk pie with fresh strawberries



            Are we not drawn onward, we few, drawn onward to new era?


Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Six Years Later

Melancholy; a deep, pensive sadness.

That's what I'm feeling tonight. Tomorrow is the anniversary of my son's birth and death.

It's interesting because the moon looks about the same tonight as it did in on this date in 2006, when I was in labor. Both moons are/were almost full (although in 2006 it was working toward full, and this year it is working toward new). I think I remember it being a bit of a drizzly day 6 years ago, too, although I can't be sure on that part.

I have my period right now, too, so I'm even having some of the same (though clearly not as intense) bodily sensations as I was having on this night 6 years ago.

I guess that's all I want to say about that for now.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Another Series of Random Fun That Isn't Mine

Some photos and such I've found online. I don't really have anything to do with them, but I think they are worth sharing and keeping anyway.

(This really works; this screenshot is from when I tried it myself.)


A friend of mine just shared this story; I'm not sure where he found it, but I thinks it's worth sharing and remembering.

Two friends were walking through the desert. During some point of the journey, they had an argument and one friend slapped the other in the face.

The one who got slapped was hurt, but without saying anything, wrote in the sand:
"Today my best friend slapped me in the face"

They kept on walking until they found an oasis, where they decided to take a bath.

The one who had been slapped got stuck in the mire and started drowning, but the friend saved him.

After he recovered from the near-drowning, he wrote on a stone:
"Today my best friend saved my life"

The friend who had slapped and saved his best friend asked him, "After I hurt you, you wrote in the sand and now, you write on a stone. Why?"

The friend replied "When someone hurts us we should write it down in sand, where winds of forgiveness can erase it away. But when someone does something good for us, we must engrave it in stone where no wind can ever erase it."

Friday, January 6, 2012

Thoughts on Rumi

the mystic poet claims
“we come spinning out of nothingness,
scattering stars like dust"

sometimes i breathe deep deep into my belly
and am overcome by the need to
cough up nothing

perhaps it is a bit of star dust still glittering in me
leftover from when i too
scattered stars in my wake

Thursday, January 5, 2012

English Pronunciation

(I know, it's a lot of words [heh, no pun intended] but it's awfully amusing and makes a good point.)

English Pronunciation 
by G. Nolst Trenité

Dearest creature in creation,
Study English pronunciation.
I will teach you in my verse
Sounds like corpse, corps, horse, and worse.
I will keep you, Suzy, busy,
Make your head with heat grow dizzy.
Tear in eye, your dress will tear.
So shall I! Oh hear my prayer.
Just compare heart, beard, and heard,
Dies and diet, lord and word,
Sword and sward, retain and Britain.
(Mind the latter, how it’s written.)
Now I surely will not plague you
With such words as plaque and ague.
But be careful how you speak:
Say break and steak, but bleak and streak;
Cloven, oven, how and low,
Script, receipt, show, poem, and toe.
Hear me say, devoid of trickery,
Daughter, laughter, and Terpsichore,
Typhoid, measles, topsails, aisles,
Exiles, similes, and reviles;
Scholar, vicar, and cigar,
Solar, mica, war and far;
One, anemone, Balmoral,
Kitchen, lichen, laundry, laurel;
Gertrude, German, wind and mind,
Scene, Melpomene, mankind.
Billet does not rhyme with ballet,
Bouquet, wallet, mallet, chalet.
Blood and flood are not like food,
Nor is mould like should and would.
Viscous, viscount, load and broad,
Toward, to forward, to reward.
And your pronunciation’s OK
When you correctly say croquet,
Rounded, wounded, grieve and sieve,
Friend and fiend, alive and live.
Ivy, privy, famous; clamour
And enamour rhyme with hammer.
River, rival, tomb, bomb, comb,
Doll and roll and some and home.
Stranger does not rhyme with anger,
Neither does devour with clangour.
Souls but foul, haunt but aunt,
Font, front, wont, want, grand, and grant,
Shoes, goes, does. Now first say finger,
And then singer, ginger, linger,
Real, zeal, mauve, gauze, gouge and gauge,
Marriage, foliage, mirage, and age.
Query does not rhyme with very,
Nor does fury sound like bury.
Dost, lost, post and doth, cloth, loth.
Job, nob, bosom, transom, oath.
Though the differences seem little,
We say actual but victual.
Refer does not rhyme with deafer.
Foeffer does, and zephyr, heifer.
Mint, pint, senate and sedate;
Dull, bull, and George ate late.
Scenic, Arabic, Pacific,
Science, conscience, scientific.
Liberty, library, heave and heaven,
Rachel, ache, moustache, eleven.
We say hallowed, but allowed,
People, leopard, towed, but vowed.
Mark the differences, moreover,
Between mover, cover, clover;
Leeches, breeches, wise, precise,
Chalice, but police and lice;
Camel, constable, unstable,
Principle, disciple, label.
Petal, panel, and canal,
Wait, surprise, plait, promise, pal.
Worm and storm, chaise, chaos, chair,
Senator, spectator, mayor.
Tour, but our and succour, four.
Gas, alas, and Arkansas.
Sea, idea, Korea, area,
Psalm, Maria, but malaria.
Youth, south, southern, cleanse and clean.
Doctrine, turpentine, marine.
Compare alien with Italian,
Dandelion and battalion.
Sally with ally, yea, ye,
Eye, I, ay, aye, whey, and key.
Say aver, but ever, fever,
Neither, leisure, skein, deceiver.
Heron, granary, canary.
Crevice and device and aerie.
Face, but preface, not efface.
Phlegm, phlegmatic, ass, glass, bass.
Large, but target, gin, give, verging,
Ought, out, joust and scour, scourging.
Ear, but earn and wear and tear
Do not rhyme with here but ere.
Seven is right, but so is even,
Hyphen, roughen, nephew Stephen,
Monkey, donkey, Turk and jerk,
Ask, grasp, wasp, and cork and work.
Pronunciation (think of Psyche!)
Is a paling stout and spikey?
Won’t it make you lose your wits,
Writing groats and saying grits?
It’s a dark abyss or tunnel:
Strewn with stones, stowed, solace, gunwale,
Islington and Isle of Wight,
Housewife, verdict and indict.
Finally, which rhymes with enough,
Though, through, plough, or dough, or cough?
Hiccough has the sound of cup.
My advice is to give up!!!

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

I Totally Won, Or, How to Make Swine Flu Work For You

The following conversation happened between me and another client while waiting for our group therapy session this evening:

Him: Oh, man, I was so sick last week!
Me: Aw, I'm sorry, what did you have?
Him: I had a nasty head cold. So, what did I miss in group last week?
Me: I dunno, I was out with the swine flu.

I so won, lol.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Dentally Disappointed

Some of you know I've been on a huge dental journey, getting all of the silver amalgam fillings out of my mouth. Partially I decided to do this because my blood does test high for some of the toxins found in the amalgam (and they are known to leech into the body over time), and partially because many of the fillings are decades old, and were causing my teeth to crack (this happens as the metal expands and contracts due to temperature variations, et cetera).

So it's been... I think I started this endeavor in August of 2011, and I've done 5 sedation visits (I can't handle dentistry without sedation, trust me) and 5 follow-up non-sedation visits (basically where they just check on their work and do a little filing as necessary). Today was the 6th, and was supposed to be the penultimate. Unfortunately the first tooth they got to work on, which needed a root canal, turned out to be pretty tricky (I'm not sure why; they don't tend to give a lot of details when you are drugged up with sedation, so I'll get the details at my follow up visit tomorrow). In the time they had intended to do 2 root canals and 2 fillings, they just worked on this one tooth.

The result is that one tooth is very sore (I've had plenty of other root canals during all this, but this is by far the most painful) and I still have 2 visits (barring further bizarreness) to complete this process. Right now I'm irritated and disappointed and in pain.

I am definitely totally grateful that I have both the means and the courage to do this, and I know that it will increase my health a lot... but for just tonight, I'm kinda down about it all.