The Silence of Rabid Intensity

My spirit is screaming for a rap now, but silently, within. Because I hail from the Bronx, the Boogie Down, where hip hop was born, and so was I, plus a twisted juggernaut of wonderful people who are still here, hanging around my life. We are the tough stuff, because only the strong survive! Where housing is a collection of mold, plaster scraping off walls and ceilings, leaks ad infinitem, toppling the ceiling, but with no warning, so your head might be caught in the chunks of plaster and heavy laden debris…And the roaches, waterbugs and mice take up residence, without paying rent, uninvited! And you scream for a pet, or a brother or a sister, and the only substitute you can find is your lovely friends you make at school, but they are constantly moving too, from apartment to apartment, because of drunk, violent boyfriends, or worse, stepfathers, who beat your mom, or even you, or knock your teeth out. And when you start to develop curves, all these men look at you like you are some tasty meat, out on a spit, and that attention feels good, because you have been starved for it, all your live long childhood. Because kids should be seen and not heard, and you were even told that!!


I could tell you a tale of this childhood, but you get a picture already, and it ain’t pretty. And you are a lookout for your dad coming home, while mom is banging the drunk boyfriend, and you know that, out in the living room, under some covers on the floor, watching the telly, trying to be not seen and not heard, both. And because one can extrapolate that the marriage is dead, even if it hasn’t been declared null and void yet, you play your role, even though your only offered escape is to go to college, some years away, and you are in the house with this drunk, and mom doesn’t have sufficient money to keep the house going, so that’s power to this abusive relationship, even with begging monthly to parents, an aunt, and this boyfriend, plus the alimony, no child support, because dad screwed mom in the divorce, and that meant me too, because I stayed with her. Even though I was innocent in all this, a mere 13 when dad left.


So when you look at me, aged midlife, weighing too much, and in therapy probably forever, it makes sense, because these wounds do not heal fully, and they had already cut deep. And the upshot of it was I honored my own obligations to these parents, even though they didn’t quite do that for me. It is a tapestry that they wove around me, and my life is the remnant of that upbringing. I never had a chance to live the promised land, say with normal parents, unconditional love, a man who would accept me, really, not just meat on a skewer…or even liken me to a toasted marshmellow, sticky sweet, and gooey, and all too willing to melt, for the right person, who never came. I am literally the Brazilian steakhouse BBQ, endless meat coming to your table, succulent, tasty, but when the diner is full, the card gets turned down, and the diner departs. What should the meat say at that point? Glad you enjoyed me?? Now get the hell out of here!


I am flesh and blood, created for more than this fate. I AM NOT MEAT! Any more than any African American is a dog, because no one should be compared thus. Have respect for your fellow being, and recognize no one can judge, because no one has walked my own road. I join hands with all who have been shut up, and victimized, and belabored with mental illness, violence, threats, poor food, even worse housing, poverty, yelling, baseball bats, slapping, kicking, punches, name it! Such children never had a chance to live the good life, because they were merely silent witnesses to carnage. Screaming silently in a vast void, to anyone who would listen. Was there anyone out there?


The Tapestry of Social Media/Other Ways

Well, presently a disconnect exists in civilization, all because of the ubiquity of the cell phone, in Western society. We are ignoring the real life, in the flesh, by virtue of the fascination of the pocket internet. Even when we dine, or cross the street, or perilously drive, our noses are in our phones! How many deaths have to happen to show that we need to FOCUS on the road, or even the person in front of us??


Even I am guilty, while I rail against it. My car is paired to my phone, so calls incoming ring in the car, and even messages click on my dash. I choose to ignore the messages until I am parked, but still….I have sent photos to friends right in front of myself, usually with an intro text. You might excuse that, because sending a pic is different than chattering, but it feels artificial somehow, because the person is right there! Couldn’t we just show the pic and see if the person likes it, before sending it off?


Similarly, my life is not my Facebook posting. I deliberately post almost exclusively the good stuff, ignoring the mundane or the sad stuff, or the private news, or stuff about others. I get permission first before posting likenesses, like pix, or anything that is personal to another person. I am most certainly NOT only a traveling photographer, even though that is part of what I am now, but I am sharing the good because I don’t want anyone’s pity. I am striving for balance in my life, where the pendulum is swinging in the right direction, because for too long it has swung negatively. Even now, there is much negative, but I do not share that. Only close friends know my real life, as it should be.

I am not alone in posting happy episodes on social media. Many people announce engagements, weddings, births, travels and anniversaries on Facebook. Is that the totality of our lives? Clearly not. I adapt the best I can to my life’s circumstances. So do not envy me, by my FB profile or postings, because it’s not the whole story.

I give thanks every day for what I do have however, and try to bring comfort, and joy even to those who matter to me the most. I may even surprise myself by living longer than I intimate to those close beings, simply because my capacity for joy is still intact! And I have had some of that, even occasionally documented in pictures! I give thanks every day, and urge everyone to do good for their families, not harming anyone close to you, because what you do to those people will follow your own fate.

I have a close friend whose husband is very very sick, and is now going to the Mayo Clinic. I continue to pray for that family, because this illness affects the other people in the household. And so, it has ripples in the stream of life, for so many…because we are all a tapestry, a gorgeous tapestry of humanity, interwoven, like an Amish quilt, so tenderly woven by hand, over many months and years. What I do for them is merely love given, and an act of God, because this is His will. That we help those in need, whenever we can. My life purpose is to simply be here as a helpmate to my circle. And I am content with that role.

So am I only a blogger with poetry and pictures? Well, no. And neither will all of you be simply categorized as an occupation. WE ARE ALL SO MUCH MORE! Our only need is to communicate what is expedient to our tapestry of life, our community.

Who is the Victim?

Smart women know the principles of yin and yang, and its effects upon Western culture.

Thus they choose to obfuscate their identities, behind initials, pseudonyms, outright lies they are, because of the inherent bias of the powerful, the ones who look down, and scoff at any efforts made by the lesser sex.


WE AREN’T HAVING IT ANYMORE! TIME’S UP! Except the chorus is widespread, powerful as a shriek in the darkness of sexual harassment, Time Person of the Year, the many women, collectively staked out, bearing witness to tyranny, voicing their ignominious fates, at the hands of coaches, doctors, businessmen, lawyers, architects, spies, name it…Even the mighty fall, once the snowball becomes the avalanche crashing into them, buried under piles of crippling snow, rolling under, cannot breathe…The complicit ones cannot shelter them anymore, because the law is on the side of the victims. And they are rightly buried under the snow, not to be heard from again, except as a paragraph somewhere in obscurity, a snicker to the ones who survive, who are righteous and brave.


The light shall always overcome the darkness, and good wins over evil. Choose your side, and be ready for the karma to take hold of you, because it will. I print under my full name because I am unashamed of what I am, and how I speak for others, the many who have not the voice, or the courage to come forward. Because they are still out there, suffering under bullies, husbands, boyfriends, anyone who makes them feel less worthy…and they lash out, harsher penalties as they feel inferior, and cannot stand it, railing against archetypes chosen for their relationship of remembrance, with their opposite sex parent. And the cycle repeats itself, with men who won’t climb out of their self imposed holes of iniquity, abuse, neglect…and visit upon those women the same.

I am actually better off as I am, even though it’s not enviable either. I liken myself to John the Baptist, making the world straight for a greater one to come after me.

The Spider and the Fly

Cornered man, living in 1960’s single, with big sexual repression at home

Entrapped woman, same era, judged, mocked, forever shamed, by out of wedlock baby

Given up for adoption, 1957, and then internalized the unworthiness, forever more.

These people meet on double date, and due to untenable options at home

Hurriedly get married, 1963. The home lives were inescapably crucibles for them both.

So they overlooked the obvious in each other, the obtuse angles in contrapositions, the utter inappropriateness of values, lifestyles, even sexual orientations!


I became their only child, born 1964. Born to a hellishness of witnessing the unraveling of three lives, all because of that crucible that put them in this situation.

Anything to escape what was essentially a Salem witch trial. How long must one suffer a high libido, no outlet but marriage, heterosexual marriage, which was the only type until 2015 June in these United States of America?

Dad died in 2010, a broken man, having tried to corner his drive in the only acceptable way, which was in fact hellish, and defiantly unfair to him, as well as his unsuspecting wife, who also brought her carpetbags laden with oak logs, heavy, dragging behind.

Mom died in 2014, also broken, from a life of not being good enough, for herself, her inappropriate mate, her parents, her drunk boyfriend, because what good man would want her?? She internalized the rejection, from the act of having a baby, out of wedlock, in 1957. She was forever tainted, scarred with stretch marks on her abdomen, if only dad had seen them, I would not even be here…but he didn’t.


Silence became the way of life, for all of us, until we screamed piteously at each other, and at the injustice, of being in a cobweb from which there is no escape. And the spider is coming to eat you…you can see him, as you squirm, and wail, to no avail. You are his meal. Law of the animal kingdom. Caught in a web of one’s own making, a tapestry of life, choices made, circumstances unfolding, being the only child of a complete travesty of marriage, screaming, crying, wailing at the obscenity of it, knowing it will fall on you to clean up the refuse, the excrement, make the decisions, knowing full well that you are unequal to the task, because you are shaped by a spider and a fly in a cobweb….

You are the sole arbiter of destiny. You decide to be better than they were, making an example of how not to be, from how they were, with each other, and you. You take the parts that are good, and incorporate them, and become unique, and forged by steel, a witness to so much, including attempted murder, abuse, neglect, dysfunctional coping mechanisms. There is a price to be paid. I fulfilled my role, despite railing against it.


And was rewarded in the end. And leaving no descendants is perhaps a fitting epitaph, as no one should be burdened by the genetics of insanity, of overcoming life, bit by bit, as if in a crimson forge, making horseshoes…The many friends are the next chapter, and they will find good uses for the treasure I share with them, and their kids. It’s like leaving a foundation to carry on good work for society…and that is a good ending. Something like Sidney Carton in  “A Tale of Two Cities,” by beloved Charles Dickens, assigned by an English teacher in high school. I remember their names even now. And I am 37 years past graduating…they live on in eternity thus.


I write because after me, there will be no blood witnesses, but there will be a community touched by a life lived in hell, in the flesh. I cannot go to horror movies anymore. You can imagine why. Peace to all whom I have loved in this life. Even if it didn’t get me where I wanted it to go.

Underlying Truths, Unvoiced

Lives of quiet desperation, indeed!

Who knows what makes us tick?

Certainly the omnipotent Creator, known as God to most of us

But what about our spouses, lovers, friends, children, parents?

Do any of them have the complete picture, stolen from furtive looks, whispers under covers, secrets revealed, lies unfurled from contradictions we tell ourselves and others?


No, no being in the flesh knows our totality.

So who was there when you thought you were alone, about to pass gas,

in your desk chair, naked, but instead shot loose bowel movement?

No one knows this, until they enter your inner sanctum and spot the permanently stained memory foam desk chair, albeit cleaned up, still ruined…and the chair is $325, so you grapple with will anyone ever see it, and shine the light on a dark alley…


Or the middle-aged workaholic, who cares for all around her, patients, clients, family, but fails to set limits on any of them, thus wearing herself to a wizened nub of a  chewed Tootsie roll lollipop, with long since nothing edible left.

Forgetting the maxim that the caregiver can give nothing when she herself is not cared for, or about. To love is also to discipline those around us. When you don’t value yourself, no one else will either.


Or the secret lover of our dreams, who we keep locked up under the floorboards, or in a hidden closet? Fodder for gossip, he is! Chuckling, far away, unreal, because unraveled, like the shit spot on the desk chair. Only small glimpses afforded publicly.

He is a friend who sends flowers and chocolate and perhaps one single long stem red rose, which lasts for eternity in memory…

Indicating present desire and mystery. She knows if one man is pursuant, others will take a second look.

Secrets are nectar on a hot summer day, sliding down the throat of the parched but still beautiful red rose, who thirsts for her lover. But even he doesn’t get all  of her, because no one should hold the entire set of keys. Keep them guessing, because when everything is known, it is time to die.

Parallel Universe

Pursuit of pleasure

Intensity of thought, making it so

For thought is action in the multiverse.

To think it is to make it happen, but in another galaxy

Far, far away, with our doppelgänger…

But we are encapsulated here, with our own limited mortal existence

Unaware of the other. How freeing, but also how sad, to think all of our thoughts informed another being’s life

Without either knowing one was acting on the other.


Mirror, Mirror; Counterpart; Star Trek: Discovery: all figments of our collective imaginations, thinking we are far more than this shell, housing a soul.

Because we are. We are infinite energy, in infinite combinations, with no limits

As our thoughts become real, but outside of our consciousness. If you wanted that woman, or man, but had him not here, be aware that it happened elsewhere…

Because love is eternal, and transcends even death.


Our mortality is a test to see where we go, post this rotting shell existence.

But at least we are not limited by fleshly concerns, for the spirit is always beautiful, timeless, infinite and wise, and does for the good of all beings, who merit the paradise.

Cat on a Hot Tin Roof: Too Hot to Handle

Big Daddy, Big Mama, Brick, Gooper, Maggie and Mae Politt, 5 brats, assorted support players, preacher and doctor. Tennessee Williams’ masterpiece play, Pulitzer Prize 1955.

Secrets and lies, fodder for dysfunctional family, spare set, single room, with nary a place to sit. Shower head, to drown yourself in denial, and to admire the naked form as well.

Ironic, never admitted, due to the time of this play, because coming out wasn’t even remotely an option then…only option was heterosexual marriage. Even if that meant it was a fling for a try, and then deciding never more. Nope, not for Brick. Maggie is simply out of luck. Like a beautiful black cat, sleek, dying of love and hunger, in a loveless marriage, like a mouse terrified on a glue trap, caught up in the need to not be poor, desperately poor, anymore…because she was wounded mortally from that experience.

Brick drowns his reality in endless drink, from the floor, glasses, whiskey and a bag of ice. Never takes a break to go for a leak: the young have endless bladder capacity….

Gooper is the educated son, a lawyer, with a bitchy wife, Mae, who keeps sticking a sharp finger in the figurative eye of Maggie, for failing to produce children. No kids because hardly any sex, ever…even though she needs it, badly, because she has the misfortune of loving Brick. Any red blooded man would want Maggie: so lovely a cat is she. But Brick doesn’t; he wants to drown himself in drink, nothing more. Disillusionment, thy name is Brick…Almost no words for wife, Big Daddy, Big Mama…They talk up a red streak though, as he is the much favored son, and Gooper knows it, and resents them all for it.

And Big Daddy is sick, then not, then it gets settled which he is. And talk of massive inheritance, $90M, 28,000 acres of Mississippi farm, and big control issues over everybody, by selfish living dad, who has no use for anyone, but Brick, the effervescent drunk. It’s his 65th birthday, with talk of no more after this, macabre. Karma is biting him too.

Study people in desperate life turns, with threats of massive change, like a patriarch dying?? See how they all behave, and what they think, really, about each other, after 40 years of being with one spouse, and hating them, or a mere 4 years, and closing the gates of love, never to return. He wants Maggie to find another lover, to get her the hell off his unwilling, unwanting self.

They strip away the truth, piece by piece. And the nakedness is both literal and figurative. Can anyone really and truly see us as we are? And people who aren’t there, like Skippy, who was far more than anyone on stage, but dead now, and how that affected Brick. Suicide, thy name is love, true love, but with that, Brick dies inside, and begins his own slow suicide, by drunkenness. A click in his head is a blackout. He seeks it daily, to sleep…blissful dreams, in the arms of his true love. Who is beyond reach now.

Big Mama is disrespected and in denial. Lovely dress though, and lines. Mae is intensely disliked by virtue of her superiority, of her fecundity, of continuing the family line, but oblivious that the children of a disliked son are also automatically disliked as well. Gooper is bitter that he is not loved, obviously, and has always been so. He is the only likely one to inherit though, as a rabid drunk is not a good steward, however much he is loved. But pause, as Big Daddy and Big Mama realize, and the lack of progeny, of Brick and Maggie…

I feel comparatively blessed now, with my own family dysfunction. How about you? Maybe being without such a family is comparatively peaceful. Dysfunction, thy name is blackmail….Because when someone needs something quite desperately, they will do anything to get it…And you’d best steer clear of the oncoming juggernaut.