Moving Back into

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Notes from April in April 2017:

Black. Blank pages for your birthday.

Instead of mountains. Instead of forest green. Ocean blue. Desert.

Where brown girl burns golden

We moved to the sounds and our bodies ached with a knowing.

Are you safe inside your body?


All i knew then: we stop feeling somehow.

I remember once: The slightest touch

We held hands to comb through crowds

When it pours out. Water down a body, the back arches. Bends.

I feel better when you touch me–I feel alive when i’m next to you.



A Liar is a wilderness

I want to be that kind of liar. The one Fanny Howe writes about in the Wedding Dress.


I want to let go of control. I want to lose control. I don’t want control to control me.


This morning, we sat with Bello between us. I looked out at the trees that line the sidewalk. It makes no sense. Why someone would plant cement around a tree. It makes perfect sense. To build a wall to keep the modern wires and plumbing from mingling with roots.


I wish our boundary was more permeable. So that there was less wall and more wilderness.


[Into the heart of the ocean, in the belly of a forest, I whisper: “It’s been 8 years since you transitioned Dad. Look! You’re angel baby has red hair!”]


Boundaries and other things


Yesterday, 6 years ago…

Yin needs


Replenish me.

I write to Gram and roll the letter into a scroll, secure with a bow. I contemplate placing the words into the ocean.

Are you happy?

I have red roses that I will feed the mouth of the ocean. I will watch the waves dance with the petals and then swallow them whole.


I have a Rei Ki doll and on our walks we find purple flowers springing up.


We protest and that is action that is hope. Hope as verb. I remember. Connected. Disconnected.


It’s so cold and grey, but sometimes there is sun.


I tell him he is the Sun–he is my Sunshine.


I call him, Love. I call my heart. Home.


We somersault around the core of our selves and make wishes and pray to heal.



There are times when the empty air flares

In this moment, the energy is still


We are told gently, it’s a good problem to have

They recommend healthy boundaries

They tell us what we already know. More blood. More Vitamin D.

Until all the Sun does is shine and shine.


Dear White America

An open letter to Eugene, Oregon:

“Perhaps the signs are there with good (white) intentions?”

To place a sign in your door, through the glass, so you can see: “I’m welcome.” “I’m not.”

To let others know–others who check “other,” who don’t look like you, who frighten you–that there is no need to feel fear of you. Your doors are open for us.

You stand with us. You don’t. You don’t know what it feels like.

And what of the places that do not hang signs?

Why are we looking for signs again?

We have forgotten we have always looked for signs.

Were we always so explicit?

The landlady placed a “No Trespassing” sign up around a tree since someone took shelter outside: hidden behind a shrub, pressed against the house. The landlady had a fence built so someone would stop shitting in the piles of leaves, outside squatting near the house.

I called for help and asked for light to flood the darkest nights. We can change the lights from white to red to green.

I am awake and slip from history’s pages

I am awake and move my brown body from place to place.

A white Buddhist town where I experienced rape and racism.
A bustling segregated big city where my family, las mujeres, experienced rape and erasure.

As the years go on, I realize we have to search for signs that say, you can place your body here. “Go ahead. No one will hurt you. No one will treat you less than. Someone will be with you soon.”

Once, I tried to fill my water cup at a bar in Eugene, OR. I was downtown on a Friday night and a young white man who hovered around the water jug, spoke to me with hate speech. I couldn’t believe my ears. My eyes saw a scared white boy. Why are white boys hating or in fear of brown female bodies?

I am awake and yet. There is a feeling: I’m dreaming. I see my Gram. She is always with me. Gram, how can we set the clocks back? How can we take backwards steps at a time like this?


I’ve always said, I want to go home. And now, I know what it means.

cheated on a New Moon

i misplaced my December thoughts. i stored them in a jar for safe keeping, but all this moving around…

so i cheated and turned back the clock. one month ago…

i climbed into the mouth of a tree. i was born inside the tree’s womb. it is in this darkness i’m home. my roots are tied to these giants. 

there is hardly any time to tell you everything. 

everything: climbs into my bones and i realize time calls us so sweetly 
and then we comb silver strands. and then you will scatter remains. and then

all that remains are roots. 

This Aquarius New Moon: breathe in the numbing fear of the dark and release the strength and support of the Avenue of Giants. 

reverse the story

we began backwards and stopped when we realized the steps felt awkward. 

it’s funny to imagine. and then, we can only imagine. we have to imagine. if this is not the story, then: shift. 

we play house and cough until throats sore. we lick honey spoons and place hands on hearts. 

we lock eyes and soften. we press our bodies against and sigh. 

Almost a year (later)


“Bad” dreams stir a sleeping child. She cries in her sleep and no one can hear her: there is silence.

All s(he) needs is to be gobbled by strong arms, gently.

Two jars of glitter balancing a glass stone.

We walked into the warm sun on a cold day. The turtle family is gone. A blue heron stands on an island while a duck swims in the rising pond waters. There is so much water since the rains have returned. You can skip stones, if you can. Today, we keep imagining all the herons return. We keep looking for the strange black bird embracing the sun, the cold, the rain, the fog. We long for the stretch of the Egret’s neck to become invisible.

The clouds are scattering. The Sun is Water. The clouds part for the Full Moon.

We’ve lived here for nearly a year and this is what we’ve seen:


We latch onto the lingering smell of summer when the hot sun boils wild reeds vetiver.

The Earth lovers embrace and hold out their offerings.

A year ago, we barely broke ground; we are now asked to consider dreamspace.

Yesterday, I learned the name of a lady bug turned catepillar: the banded woollybear.

Pre-Full Moon night, a giant spider that wasn’t so giant, spun softly above my door.

We were frightened. We asked the spider to go. It went.

We keep learning when to go first, when to go second, last

and when to gobble each other up gently when we feel so small.



Tarot Card Image by Judith Tamarah Fried