everything is nothing. {with a twist}


I got the good table. The one with light pouring in from the window it's pushed up against. South West facing, opening to the bay. Cornflower blue weaves born from a steel gray source. Swelling and expanding all the way to the Canadian Coastal range, which is topped in crystal white ice, an exposition of light meets dark, that place where beauty is indescribible. Beyond the beauty, my eyes land on tall phallic clusters of smokestacks erect just at the horizon.  They're tips opened, moving sensual smoke shapes of monstrous proportions out into the sky, a juxtaposion of deadly emissions.

But we are built to see. To see everything.  Our heart’s eye was not meant to skim the surface, to only brush against as we walk past.  We are meant to walk right into it and clash the skins into the flesh of the flesh, the mesh of the meridans, to drown ourselves in the blood.

We are not surface seeking creatures. We aren’t here to only take away an idea of color or shape, the flat glare of a computer screen, but to be imprinted by true meaning of what we are looking at- to be imprinted by the imprint.  The bones carving into our own, the flames of arteries entangling within our circulation.  We are built to be seen, be heard, to behold the atrocious beauty and purposefully awful destruction of every single thing on the planet {and beyond}. Regardless of what it might look because it just looks like us.  A part of us. 

That disgusting pollution spewing out above some of the most sacred waters I’ve ever laid my eyes on? That’s me.  I can see my face in the smoke, my hips as it bends around the once virgin air.  We are bound to become every single thing on the planet because we already are.  This is the practice of empathy. Being an empath is not the act of being cultural or socially sensitive. It's the practice of stepping into it all and understanding or undertaking everything in the universe.  Refute it all if you must; but become it first.

If we merge with what breaks our hearts, make love to what fucks with our souls, and learn to Be It, something along the spiral of magic happens.  The meeting of the similar and the wrongs and the wars and pitiful fears along side the chaos of the joys, the ecstacy of the thrills, the tenderness of newborn love.  The meeting up of it all.  I think that’s where the healing is.

But this could only be my daydream at the table with the good light.

*  *  *

Daniel wears a hat, a burgundy one, part Greek sailor part NY cabbie, his facial hair, that spans from lumberjack to barely stubble, was somewhere in between today. His head is cocked and he hands me a strong espresso and I notice his knuckles are a little hairy and I just start crying to him. Sobbing into my Americano. He nods in knowing. I just say:  I just want someone to see me.  And then he says back: Do you see yourself? 

That was another daydream.

* * *

But this was real.

That saucy lady.  She’s 20 years older than me.  She’s tosses her hair back, shortish, salt and pepper gray.  She takes off her glasses to be sure I can see her steel blue eyes, soft and bright, not far from the color of the bay.  She wants me to see the embedded memory of the sensual young beauty that once lived there with the added Wise she now claims. She tosses her literary intellect at me, like she was serving me up shooting stars from her well-read sky and somehow has me putting down Marie Semple’s Where’d ya go Bernadette and picking up a $7.00 hardcover of Christopher Buckley’s Bloomsday. Convincing me that instead of Simple and Light {but flawless} I wanted Hard and Humorous {and raucous}. 


* * *

I text Him immediately. No matter what’s going on with us, we will always be able to smile together about an over-age lesbian women hitting on me. Before I type in that story, I preface it with something that just comes out organically: I don’t want anyone else to feel like I do.  I don’t want to hold up this worn out, hopeless and shattered mirror.  Especially not to him.  He didn’t respond, about that or the lesbian.  Crickets. Maybe I was wrong.  Maybe we won’t always be able to laugh.

* * *

She screams from the hours of 7am to 7:30am, the vein in her necked popped.  She had dressed herself in a long pink corduroy skirt that's her older sisters.  As she screams and flings her body against the roundness of our home, her skirt keeps dropping over her bum, showing her “no underwear” policy. 

“I don’t waaaaaaaaan aaaaaaaaa goooooo toooooo schoooooooool.”

And so I burn bacon, toast, make a shitty smoothie that's the color of army green with pieces of tough kale.  I stepp on a shard of glass from the Pyrex that exploded in my hand earlier trying to melt coconut oil. I scream out Fuck in pain and the oldest reminds me to say poop.  She has asked me to replace every single swear word that I apparently say too often with the word poop. Say poop or put a dollar in my horse jar.

How do you tell your five your old she damn well is going to school today and quite possible every day for the rest of her life, from morning to night, for infinity? And to do it without screaming just that and wanting to shoot up some kind of invisible ink in the veins so nobody can see you forever and ever?  How you do it is that you don’t do it.  I walk away and decide I’ll have a glass of wine at lunch because damn it, I deserve it.  I deserve it because I didn’t scream and I didn’t fade away to nothing and leave them all alone.  Instead I take deep breaths just like the experts say to do and I walk away and give us all some space.  I cover my body with a huge quilt in the the other room and I Pray the Hail Mary.  When she finally stops screaming, I go back to her,  I kneel down and tell her: I understand.  You don’t want to go to school today.  I understand. And she cries softly on my shoulder for a few seconds then looks up at me and says, when we goanna get a dog? Soon, baby, soon.

* * *

I text Him again:  The dog was an offering of faith.  In us. In our family. That’s good news coming from the faithless. 

I cry again. This time not in a daydream with my barista.  This time for real.  What a beautiful ugly this life is. Looking out at the bay, as trite and ridiculous as that sounds, I cry. The sun is not even out anymore but the sky has parted and the gray erased in plaves and even without solar light, the ocean’s mad bold bright love affair with the moon is very apparent. It feels voyeuristic taking such a deep peak in their intimacy, in the joyful moans of their relations.    And then I remember it’s my own.  All my own, a mad affair of mine, right in the middle of this morning.