Showing posts with label Body. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Body. Show all posts

Thursday, November 26, 2020

Just us

(Huckie must already be at the table starting without the rest of us.)

A couple of "trunksgiving" exchanges (LB+TB)
a couple of food drop offs (SB + KS)

It wasn't last year, or even close to our regular but it was happy.

Sunday, November 22, 2020

Out and about

Today I want to write a poem that will not be about dying 

maybe something something being in community 

about being connected and continuing

About holding my arms out like a tree even when empty

(stop that!) about sending all my pain to the sea, 

where it's already salty

By day I will read something lofty, edifying, clear

At night, I will watch stars that seem cold 

and know they're really quite fiery

Alert with my intention, my asylum of inattention

I sling myself to beauty, ignore summer's

pillows smattered with snow

Thursday, November 19, 2020

Within Without

Please hold my head as gently 

as a bomb labeled 'headache'

knowing the earth is waiting

feeding time under the loam

who is it who knocked on the door (we didn't hear)

who is it who wants to come in (we can't really see)

howling into the cusp, dreams away from disaster

learning the circuitry of sadness, the lineage of loss

For in a different world 

I lost many months ago

my tongue a tombstone

fingers clawing worms

Friday, November 13, 2020

The stuff of horror

Tomorrow is Diwali and I want to get this down in the hope that I will be able to set it aside for a little bit. I've been carrying it around since yesterday when I read a thread on Mona Eltahawy's Twitter (since then, I've seen a few news outlets calling it the "Kashmore Tragedy"). The details are so horrific I can't say them out loud without choking and I don't really think I could pass it on to anyone else.  

But the story keeps going around in a loop in my head, knotting now and then around the old nodes: the precarity of being a single mother; how difficult it is to love and grow a girl child in this fucking patriarchal world; the horror of captivity and unending rape; lives where people move across the country for a job that pays about 250 dollars; knowing people are out there victim-blaming--saying things like 'bad choices' and 'where is the father?'; what care and support are available to the mother and child; why support wasn't available to them previously; the courage it took for the mother to go to the police instead of prolonging the cycle; if the police treated her with respect; the bravery and compassion of the ASI (assistant sub inspector?) using his wife and daughter as decoys to catch the rapists; were the ASI's wife and daughter given a choice in the matter; worried for the ASI and his family now that his name and likeness are all over media; knowing there's so much more abuse I'll never even know from within safe spaces in families, communities, and professional + emergency services. Why are so many men/humans such trash? 

On the Enby parenting group, one parent recently asked what our own lives might have looked like if we had the freedom of gender choice we support for our children. I know I've always wished for genderlessness, especially in professional settings. And in so many other settings, I'd have loved the possibility of having what Wanda Sykes calls a "detachable pussy."

Thursday, October 29, 2020

My Panel / My At

To be clear, my colleagues and I did not fight about cancel culture and statues--but we did deliberate.  

Yet apparently, it didn't stop people from watching the panel discussion as though it were a prize fight at the MUN House (per At). If I look amused in the top right corner it's because At was asking some cleverly self-deprecating question online. The corner of the laptop abutting the screen is his! Togetherness! Yay!

(OMG, I love that fellow. I have to admit, I lost all professional composure when a late arrival rehashed the "statues are history" tack in Q&A and At's deadpan riposte on the event chat was: "I got my history major by staring at a bunch of statues.")

Sunday, October 25, 2020

"Global crises can only be solved globally."

And some other gems to "make our planet make sense" from Ambassador Andrew Young at the UN's Past, Present Progress event. 

An obvious statement, yet so deserving of amplification in these times. 

Sometimes one forgets how things used to be. It gave an added urgency to discussing the new ENG civic discourse and social justice pilots today with AP.

Thursday, October 15, 2020

These shoes weren't meant for walking

My shoes; At's socks
But as I put my lunchbox, and my briefcase, and my purse into the passenger side of the car and as I was beginning to take off my jacket before walking around to the driver's side to get in and finally get home, the car door shut on me and beeped like Knight Rider. My purse with the key was right there on the passenger seat, so I didn't think I could be locked out. But... Oh, I was. I tried the trunk, thinking I could crawl in, but it wouldn't open either. I couldn't go back to my office (my keys were in the car); I couldn't call AAA or Big A (my phone was in the car); It was nearly 8 and I was hungry and tired and couldn't get a snack (my wallet was in the car). 

So I walked over to At's (I'd just been thinking I hadn't seen him since Nu's birthday... and writing that I realize it's been less than a week, but it has been a long week!). He tried the door too, but nothing. So we made the call, and Big A got on the road to bring me the spare key, Nu in tow since it was dark and I didn't want Nu to be home by themselves. (Big A initially demurred about having to drive all the way, and I was instantly mad thinking about all the times I drove into NYC with little At and Baby Nu to get him after a late shift at Bellevue. But he quickly did the right thing, and no one got yelled at. Ha.)

So an hour till reinforcements arrived, and my sweet At offered to feed and water me and sit with me on the MUN House porch (outsiders aren't allowed into student housing to minimize Covid exposure) to keep me company. But I was too keyed up, so I asked if we could walk around, and borrowed some socks from At, and we did. I kept telling him he should go back to work on the delayed deadlines and midterm extensions, but we kept walking and talking, and then Nu and Big A were there, and there was a teensy family reunion in the Heritage Parking Lot. 

Tuesday, October 06, 2020

King, Chavez, Parks... and Penrose

When I heard Sir Roger Penrose won the Physics Nobel today, the first thing that came to mind was that At had had some playdates with RP's son Maxwell (named for the mathematician) back in Oxford. Was it 2001? 2002? We knew Penrose on the fringes of JSA's work with him so I googled "Penrose and JSA," and sure enough--tons of collabs. Gosh--that feels like such a lifetime ago.

Today, I received logo-ed masks from the KCP program (King-Chavez-Parks, baby!) and will wear them everywhere with pride.

Sunday, September 27, 2020

Almost 13

Sometimes my child seems really far away and the world seems really big, but I trust I'll still be able to watch out for them. 

When they're hidden, I can use other signs and senses to make sure they're ok. 

I trust they'll be able to make the right decisions when I'm too far away to help--moving away from strangers, stepping off the path when necessary.

It helps that they stop when the path forks, wordlessly discussing the way forward with me.

Saturday, September 26, 2020

Wild Things

All of this made me quite anxious.

All of this made me very happy.


I chaired the WGS sessions of the MASAL conference from home; finalized the WLC second-seven week course syllabus; worked on Nu's birthday plans; hiked with L; practiced saying "fiddly," "wobbly," and "stodgy" in preparation for watching GBBO later in the evening... Full day.

Friday, September 25, 2020


How can it be... that at an academic workshop... of over 30 people... in the 21st century... 

It seems I'm the only person of color?

Monday, September 21, 2020

So Many Meetings

So Too many meetings, an eternal leap--just so 

But some things are useful; anyone could do this. 

They say I mean a thousand things--warning:

I may have cried about it and made it important

but it's just the spin of the world, a spell shortened.

Doubts nest together like spoons--they question

smarts or scope or if I'm dope. I'll fiddle with my 

mic, memorize hopes cresting the tip of prayer,

behind my curtain of tongue, my blanket of sleep

and an inevitably unreadable ticking to tomorrow.

(Here I am bundled up for sitting outside for hours in barely 60 degree weather, looking like a fool, and I kinda secretly love it.)

Saturday, September 19, 2020


And we're off for the day, making the trip to Yellow Springs to see MIL who's had a few surgeries in the six months of the pandemic. Four hours there and four hours back, and the plan is to return home later tonight so we don't expose MIL to our germs or pick up icky hotel cooties ourselves.

(I've packed an extra change and puppy supplies, just in case!)

Wednesday, August 26, 2020

First School Day

I mean to write of pomegranates 

and roses in fairytales, how even

the pierce of your stare is a star.

You my child, have been puppies, tigers,

bees, snakes, and a praying mantis. You

say, today's animal: "sickly Victorian boy."

So pearlescent with scattered energy

stay stationed in understories of care 

and humming to the surface, beyond

yes--the press of your face on my shoulder

but holding fast like the ink-paint-print-stain 

koans growing on your arms for years. 

Thursday, August 20, 2020

Alright; Back to school

Lots of chronologically fixed and geographically immovable chores today--as in I had to show up at precise times to specific places and do stuff (pick up Nu's school supplies, check out my classroom tech, get COVID-tested, and lots of etc.). I felt so much anxiety driving to work (and every Trump sign spiked it/spooked me). 

Anyway, I had lots of new cuttings and plants with me since it had been months since I was last in my office, and I assumed my office plants wouldn't have made it. But they had all taken advantage of my overwatering the last time, and  although they looked so sad, they had survived. Yay! I supplemented some of the emptier looking planters, and then I had plenty left to make a nice welcome gift for a new colleague.

I picked up the college-issued safety kit from my mailbox and it had some very useful supplies (Alma plaid mask, thermometer for our mandatory daily health reporting, etc.) though obviously, the hand sani and anti-bac wipes aren't going to last very long. 

The COVID testing was weird, uncomfortable, overly intimate, and ugh. Earlier today, L had said that if she had to get tested every day as the White House staff supposedly does, she'd turn in her resignation. I chortled at that--"Yeah, L;" I teased: "THAT would be the reason YOU wouldn't work with this administration."

Wednesday, August 19, 2020

Back to School Party

At goes back to college on Friday and Nu starts school (online) on Monday, so it was time for my little monsters to have their annual back-to-school party. 

I made a playlist to share with them; they got some loot--a clean-start calendar, chakra stones to keep under their pillows, essential oils to boost immunity, lucky bamboo for the rest of 2020, water bottles for hydration (listed like that, I can see I skewed pandemic new-agey there!); and got pampered with facemasks and a mama pedicure while they watched a movie. 

All they had to do was pick out dinner and a movie. The dinner pick was easy-peasy (mint chicken), but picking out a movie took some time. They cycled through Ten Things I Hate About You and Clueless and Mean Girls and Napolean Dynamite and School of Rock

And then they began to improvise--Inglorious Basterds? I mean he taught Hitler A LESSON." Hahaha. I love my babies. They finally settled on Monsters University

Sunday, August 09, 2020


We were all looking forward to Big A's pizza at dinner--handmade, made-from scratch crust, homemade sauce, personalized toppings, and all. But while the kids were showing me a video essay on D.B.Cooper (wild, that!), Big A popped in and sheepishly asked if I could help him with something.

"How do you turn on the oven?" Kind of the cliche-est of man questions, but not really as our oven has a multi-step process involving dials and several buttons--a process I'm liable to forget myself without regular practice. So I started to breezily and oh-so-cockily show him--but umm... nothing. The panel wouldn't respond at all; the ovens just wouldn't turn on. So much for my lady-expertise.

So here we are, all lined up at the counter,  getting ready for Big A's newly-invented, cast-iron griddle fired, stovetop pizza. 

And it was delicious.