Wednesday, February 06, 2013

dreams to spare

"And, like this insubstantial pageant faded,
Leave not a rack behind. We are such stuff
As dreams are made on, and our little life
Is rounded with a sleep." 
                                              The Tempest IV,i  

of course it's 'normal',
part of the 'process'
but after 2 1/2 years, or
30ish months, or
about 9,000 days of
living with someone has several 'regulatory dysfunctions' (doctor's words, not mine)
in his brain
with someone who manifests these 'dysfunctions' with difficult behaviour
(difficult, defiant, dangerous, direful, dreadful, deranged - God how I love a thesaurus - behaviour) 
and even though you have been his only constant parent, and support, his sane, safe place
when he asks you, correction,
when after $4,000 in medical bills - this month,
after hundreds of miles and hours of car trips,
after you've read yourself blind to understand so you can be that sane, safe place
when he screams at you,
from his 17year old ego-bound place
"Do you know what it's like to have to give up on your fucking dreams?!"
for the first time, you can respond like that sane, safe person you work so hard to be,
even after the second and third time,
but eventually what you see is all the parts of you that you did give up,
the parts of you that gave up All of the dreams your 17year old self had,
all the dreams your 25 year old self had, and the dreams
of your 34 year old self, your 41 year old self, and the 48 year old self that is looking
straight into his grief, pain and anger
and as you stand there, with all of the lost dreams wrapped around your throat and your heart,
his and yours, because they are same for you,
will all of the dreams for him and dreams for you that you push aside
day after day after day, after motherfucking day
with all the dreams neither of you will never realize because you're certain you'll be in this hell forever
all your dreams for both of you that you don't even peak at, each, every moment, of you life, right now
because it is easier to pretend you don't want them, than to lose them over and over again,
as you stand there with all of your collective dreams smashed and weeping
on the stupid beige carpet between you
you respond "yes" in a voice that is louder than the sane, safe voice
you tell him "yes" you know "what the fuck it is like", no longer even pretending to be sane,
you tell him "yes" and so does everyone else in the world, and then you pick up new dreams,
and then you suck it up and move on and you do you best, knowing as you hear your voice
that this is not your best,
not by a long shot
but this,
this smashed, weeping, broken person is the best you have to give him
right now
and you toss another dream into heap.

shiny happy people full of naught

'... I want to know if you can get up
after a night of grief and despair
weary and bruised to the bone
and do what needs to be done
to feed the children...."
from 'The Invitation' by Oriah Mountain Dreamer


it's been one week
and I'm too damn tired to slap on
that bright and shiny plastic smile
and say all the stupid pointless, and hollow words,
to pointless, hollow plastic people - with shiny smiles - who don't,
give even the slightest of damns,
to whom,
it has never occurred
to give a damn,
about anyone but,

it's been one week, and
the best I can do is put my head down
to sneak the odd nap,
and hope I don't drool on my arm.

one week, and I still wish they did,
give a damn, that is
I think,
that they
Give-A-Fucking -Damn
that we're in so much pain over here,
HELLO.... can you see me?
can anyone see us?
fuck it.

but thinking and wishing
for people to be different doesn't
do anything but make me more nuts,
and today I quit bashing my head
against that glass wall.
today, I walk away.

today, I made myself some goddamn tea
and lit a goddamn candle,
because, somehow that's suppose to help
I have no fucking clue what.

and now I'm writing word, after word, after Mother-Fucking Word,
that mean absolutely nothing, it's just my
word vomit on a page,
I'll write till I can't anymore, then
I'm going to draw some really ugly lines,
some terrible pictures,
and doodles, that I will hate, and I'll crumple them all up,
and throw them at the wall

and I wonder
why it is I haven't cried yet (except for that one time).
shouldn't I be crying?
shouldn't I be on the floor sobbing?
I mean really, this is really awful stuff, the stuff of every parent's nightmares
and all I can manage is tired
and occasionally snippy?
what the fuck wrong with me?

I'm just so damn tired,
my stomach feels like cold black stone, and
a boot is stomping down, Hard, on my chest, and I can't breath
but no tears, no time for tears.

maybe I'm tired enough to finally see,
really see
who the love comes from,
who is my tribe, who will hold us, and sustain us.

the rest are dross.


"What thou lovest well remains, the rest is dross
What thou lov'st well shall not be reft from thee
What thou lov'st well is thy true heritage...."
from Ezra Pound's 'Canto LXXXI'

buy your own flowers

and when you think things won’t get  worse,
that things have turned a corner,
and while it’s not rosy,
at least it’s not hell anymore,
and you dare to hope that there could be a future.

that night when you’d expect to be in bed
you are driving quickly to emergency
you are driving your child
your child with the belly full of pills
and you’re hoping you get there before
it kills his liver, before
it kills him
and in your pajama bottoms you walk determinedly past people
and go to the head of the line
(how very un-Canadian of you)
and you say in a loud clear voice your son has overdosed
and you hand them the bottle
then it’s all motion, and follow me
and take off your clothes and pee in this cup
needles for blood, needles for IVs, stickers for electrodes
monitors and carts with medications
speedy doctors and nurses all talking at once
and you sit, in your pajama pants, and text his father, because
his father who was too fucking upset to do anything useful, because
his father couldn’t even manage to put on his own damn shoes
so, you’re in charge, again
you’re the one who copes, again
the one who holds the family together, again
it’s not that you mind, but
wait, you do mind, you mind a lot
you’re tired, and you’re alone and watching the speedy medical staff
and you have to answer his irritating questions with text messages

later, when it seems your son won’t die tonight,
you go home and talk down his father who is ‘very upset’
and ‘needs to vent’ and likes to
‘process his frustrations out loud’, to you, because he can’t talk to anyone else
and what the hell is he going to tell his family
(don’t answer that)

and when you finally say fuck it and go to bed
3 hours before you get up for work, and
you lay your clothes out on the floor, just in case,
just, in case the hospital calls and you have to rush back
because actually he is going to die tonight
but he doesn’t
so you go to work the next day and do the only thing you can think to do
is write a fucking poem
because that fixes everything
because you sure can’t talk to people about the latest and greatest Swirling Shit Storm
your family is going through

Here are the Swirling Shit Storm Rules:

your son goes to rehab,
no one notices
you drive 700miles a week,
you leave your daughters to fend for themselves
no one notices

your son overdoses,
no one wants to talk to you
your daughters are so tired they don’t want to talk to you
you buy your daughters ice cream and teddy bears and chocolate
but that fixes nothing
their brother is still in the hospital
and they can’t talk about it
they don’t want to talk anymore about it

your son actually dies,
well then, everyone wants to talk
people send you flowers
and bring food
and love, and there is a big get together
and everyone says nice things about your son,
about you, and they actually
talk to you and your daughters
and his father can vent to someone other than you

and there’s the rub,
until your son actually dies,
there’s no one to talk to
you’re buying the fucking flowers for yourself
and the fucking comfort food for your daughters
and talking his father, the fuck down, again,
and again
and again
because you're in this on your own
and you best just get used to it.