Why I take pictures (one reason)

Documentation can take me out of the moment or it can help me sink deeper into it. That's determined, I think, by whether I am doing it more for the product (the photo, the poem, etc.), which will exist only in the future, or for the process, which can take place only in the present.

And the process changes me; it changes the way I think and see and live.

Even if I don't have a camera, even if I don't take the picture, or even if the picture doesn't turn out — the fact that I often do have a camera and sometimes do take pictures puts me in the habit of asking, as I live my moments, is this beautiful / is this interesting / will i miss this when it's gone? Questions which keep me receptive and paying attention.

Week in photos (276-280)

276/365
276/365. Afternoon in my room.

277/365
277/365. A little gift from Liv.

278/365
278/365. "I'm Unemployed; I Live in My Bed"

279/365
279/365. Vaillancourt Fountain

280/365
280/365. Sunday morning with Miss Erin.
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(Picking up the point-and-shoot 365 again after a three-and-a-half month break.)

Rehabilitating a day like today

1. cry and feel afraid until you're done

2. get at least thirty seconds of fresh air before you give up

3. don't mind your phone or inbox for a while

4. choose a song that makes you feel like getting dressed
       *i chose "hollaback girl"

5. fix your coffee with a ridiculous quantity of hot cocoa mix in it

6. mistakes are small and life is big
       *do something that makes it feel true again

Crissy Field, this year

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With Brianna. January 2013.

Learning / patience

You are the map that I am filling in,
with my eyes closed,
with fingertips and
the palms of my hands: wanting
everything about you
to become
familiar

Crissy Field, last year

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With Steph. July 2013.

"It is better to speak..."

I'm posting this today for courage, for me, for you. Have a lovely weekend, my dear friends. Do something strong with it.

A Litany for Survival

For those of us who live at the shoreline
standing upon the constant edges of decision
crucial and alone
for those of us who cannot indulge
the passing dreams of choice
who love in doorways coming and going
in the hours between dawns
looking inward and outward
at once before and after
seeking a now that can breed
futures
like bread in our children's mouths
so their dreams will not reflect
the death of ours:

For those of us
who were imprinted with fear
like a faint line in the center of our foreheads
learning to be afraid with our mother's milk
for by this weapon
this illusion of some safety to be found
the heavy-footed hoped to silence us
For all of us
this instant and this triumph
We were never meant to survive.

And when the sun rises we are afraid
it might not remain
when the sun sets we are afraid
it might not rise in the morning
when our stomachs are full we are afraid
of indigestion
when our stomachs are empty we are afraid
we may never eat again
when we are loved we are afraid
love will vanish
when we are alone we are afraid
love will never return
and when we speak
we are afraid our words will not be heard
nor welcomed
but when we are silent
we are still afraid

So it is better to speak
remembering
we were never meant to survive

– Audre Lorde

(Sometimes) overwhelmings

I'm sitting in bed. Cold rooibos tea in a glass. Thinking about other people's kitchens.

Supermarkets, airports, and other people's kitchens can make me feel like I am still sick. It frustrates me. The getting stuck staring at fridges and pantries and shelves and menus, getting stuck walking circles (nothing's right, none of these are it...), getting more overwhelmed by the choices and the false sense of weightiness to the decision as I get hungrier. It's 2013; I haven't had a relapse in a while; though it is a little harder lately my ambivalence towards eating is mostly resolved — I want to live my life, you know, and I like how I look with some light in my eyes — but the practical things can still occasionally be tricky. I tell myself: let this be simple. Just choose something. Don't let it take more than [x] minutes to decide...

Needing work, taking hairspray naps and poetry naps. Sylvia Plath today. I've never liked her poetry all that much...but just letting myself flip through her collected poems, I think she could grow on me.

Hi.

Out here among the stars

Out here among the stars where fathers aren't sociopaths, where fathers won't make you afraid just because they can. Voices. And promises white as stars.

(On the moon there is a replica of my house, and I am climbing its stairs. The stairs I am climbing belong to the exact replica of my house that was built on the moon some time ago...)

To move casually to another continent. Is there any other way? Everything is of the greatest LEVITY when taken moment by moment. Everything is of the greatest GRAVITY when taken moment by moment.

/

March 3, 2012, 2:54a

Walking with Nikki

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New Bedford, August 2012.

Read in January 2013

Titles link to the pertinent Goodreads page — feel free to add me as a friend.

1. Shout Her Lovely Name, by Natalie Serber

2. Astonishments: Selected Poems, by Anna KamieĊ„ska

3. Selected Poems, by Leah Goldberg

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