Monday, December 9, 2019

Pig and farm report



I went outside to walk in the woods as I do every morning then I turned around and came right back in because the fog was so deep I was also to going to go to the store but the fog still hangs there and I don’t want to drive in it inside is just as oppressive as out I cannot watch any more of the clown car that is our entire government and got about two minutes in when the hearings started and then I was finished I will read whatever news there is to read online I’m sure as it is constantly hammered into us

waiting for my son to get here in the past few weeks I have realized how much my stress and anxious disappears when he is gone and how that anxious builds its house inside my head and my body when he is on his way here does that make me a terrible person a bad mother I don’t think so he of course hasn’t needed me in decades but he feels he had to get in my head like a guide dog so I won’t misstep or I don’t know arrange the pantry in ways that don’t fit his logic it’s not my place to write about his personal life here I’ve always respected his privacy but he too has his demons passed down genetically through his father and me and our families he too has generational trauma to live through and process and sometimes I just need a break from carrying all of it I feel my leathery wings folding back in I feel my light freedom fleeing through the foggy woods

I made an appointment to see a random doctor at the clinic tomorrow at 4 pm because I can’t seem to shake this smoker’s cough and I haven’t smoked for 30 years that too worries me I’m curled up in a soft blanket with Jupiter for now for now I think tomorrow will be brighter

mockingbird wish me luck

Sunday, December 8, 2019

A post that turns dark







Sometimes if I’ve been in another room for too long Hal starts distress meowing very loudly and terrified and pitiful and I always tear into my bedroom to make sure he’s okay because he’s still a feral kitten who gets into stuff but he’s always at the foot of my bed marching back and forth like Napoleon wanting a scritch this happens at least twice a day and bog knows what he sounds like when I actually leave I keep telling him that one of these days I am going to stop falling for his trick and then if he truly does get into trouble I won’t be there to rescue him he doesn’t believe a word I say sometimes when I scritch his chest he wraps his very muscular front legs around my hand and arm and squeezes with ecstasy purring like I’m a raw salmon and it’s his his first day off a fast when those front legs and exceedingly sharp quick claws start kneading I just let him have at it because if I pull away too fast there will be blood

this morning the newscaster on a local station was talking about how to do Christmas with small children and she said instead of running around like a crazy person  and it struck me as off as insulting and it made me ask myself exactly what does that look like in fact? is that how I look when I’m depressed certainly not most days I don’t move is it what a panic attack looks like?  indeed not how about mania? PTSD? full throttle anxiety? I can’t speak to the mental illnesses that aren’t mine I have heard this expression countless times since I became self aware and since I was diagnosed with bipolar 1 and it never affected me this way in fact I use the term crazy  about myself all the time though I didn’t pay attention to it until I edited my manuscript and realized I had used it 17 times to describe myself or Henry Darger or my mother maybe that’s when my ear tuned itself to hear

I’ve been rewatching the first season of The Affair  because because it deals so honestly with the aftermath of the death of a child what happens to the parents what happens to the family structure what happens to faith how everything breaks apart and not a single structure mental emotional or physical is left standing I have my own family and the death of my sister Lark who died at three from drinking weed killer as a powerful lens and my entire manuscript was my way of digging backward to find out what happened

what happened

I’ll never really know the truth of it just the family version or versions of it the history and fable of it my mother’s and my father’s stories that warped and changed with each telling and the terrible truth of my brother and me barely old enough to know what we were looking at passing Lark’s pink baby book back and forth to each other trying to crush her molecules into our already troubled and damaged bodies the birthday cards then the obituary and sympathy cards this memory is real though over the years I’ve come to doubt it at times I know it’s real because that baby book came back to me after my mother’s death along with the missing photos of my brother and Lark and me as children photos I never saw or only dreamed seeing I kept Lark’s obituary and our childhood photos and nothing else the stink of death and grief was too deep and rotted into its water stained satin cover it is gone

my book my manuscript helped me dig through the ashes of that tragedy and answer the questions to satisfy myself and my life I was never able to answer the why of how my mother treated us but I came close as close as I will ever come to finding an understanding of her rage and grief and of my father’s terrible distance from me

I dedicated the book to Lark but it is indeed for all the missing children and to all the families who live through this

Peace

Friday, December 6, 2019

Pig and farm report

my son left early this morning and I like being here alone a way of ratcheting down everything I cooked steel cut oats with a cut up apple and cinnamon in my slow cooker and had it for breakfast then I washed the oatmeal bowl and my spoon and the slow cooker and spent the rest of the day cooking black beans in it so tomorrow I can have one of my favorite dinners corn tortilla with a spoonful of black beans topped by one scrambled egg topped by a spoonful of plain Greek yogurt with a wee bit of restaurant hot salsa I had some Gouda and 3 Ritz crackers and three dill pickles for dinner tonight the laundry washed and folded and put away the kitchen clean coffee made for tomorrow I thought about baking bread but I am still too exhausted from whatever fuckery is inhabiting my lungs actually I know what it is I just have to be careful it doesn’t turn really evil

the rest of the day I read delicious solitary superb reading the way I read as a child lost in the story

typing into the void here is my way of pushing back the intense dark of winter even though I clearly don’t have much to say

so is this


Thursday, December 5, 2019

today I bought new spices as many as I had on my list and some apples and some pears and that’s all I could do because I get tired quickly when I opened the spices I was amazed by their fragrance I know we’re supposed to swap out our spices every year but does anybody actually do this I am really curious my son is leaving for what used to be the orchard tomorrow which reminds me I saw a tower of the gleaming new perfectly round Snow White poison apple red non perishable Cosmic Crisp apples the apples that are going to kill us all the the King Monsanto square watermelon of apples the apples that are eating the profits of smaller orchards in my state and maybe yours please don’t buy them

tiny hitler has declared war on SNAP recipients by insisting everyone get a job something that is either impossible for people who are receiving them or people who are just trying to get by on jobs that don’t pay enough as it is and he’s also tightening the reins on people with SSDI now demanding they get interviewed four or five or six times a year instead of every three years to make sure they aren’t faking it for fun because you know poor people are responsible for the financial wasteland that is this shameful country

I did see Nancy Pelosi send fire lightning bolts at a reporter who had the gall to ask her if she was trying to impeach tiny hitler because she “hates him” and it was awe some to see to witness I stood up and saluted her

I have been eyeballing a perfectly shaped baby Douglas fir in the back forest I’d love to string some lights on it maybe fairy lights unless anyone knows about other lights that don’t require an extension cord self powered lights the tree is about 20 tall maybe taller I would just throw the lights up as far as they reach we are at the point where night seems forever out here

Wednesday, December 4, 2019

Pig and farm report

I literally turned my body inside out by snuggling up with two purple caps full of the hideous  Mucinex today and tonight

I had seven olives for dinner

I’m going to bed to see if I can hack up my other lung

Tuesday, December 3, 2019

Pig and farm report part B

The girl from whom I bought my son’s phone yesterday casually mentioned to us that glitter is the herpes of the art world

I wanted to ask her to amend her statement to the craft world  but I honestly don’t know much about the craft world and her statement while eyebrow raising kind of made me love her and give her a five star review on her store

strangely today I have been considering how much fun it would be to start inviting people over to hang out like in the olden days you know when animals could talk maybe start a salon of like minded folk or a writing group or just have a tea party with fancy hats I have no idea why I’ve been considering this but I suspect that it’s because I got my tall lace up boots out of my closet and I’ve been striding around my forest in them like some kind of deranged elderly hippy general

Also today I proved something that I already knew which is if it smells bad it tastes bad  even if it’s just an onion and you decide to go ahead and make a quick little pico no matter the stink a bad onion can taste bad for miles and no amount of peppermint flavored gum is going to help

I had to steal the gum from my son’s room because I do not normally partake

This post contains far too many italics and that makes me tired
This is the most important thing I saw today

Give to the Aurelia Foundation for Elizabeth and Sophie

Pig and farm report part A

Last night after watching episode 7 of WATCHMEN I ran around the house screaming WHAT THE FUCK WHAT THE FUCKING FUCK WHAT DID I JUST SEE then my head exploded and I couldn’t sleep I am not making this up




Monday, December 2, 2019

I went to the telephone store this morning it took two hours and when I came back I saw three white vans surrounding my neighbor’s trailer my neighbor about whom I wrote here   I had noticed that her very bad and dangerous boyfriend had been there for over two weeks and usually he only appears for a night then disappears for long stretches of time but he was gone and I didn’t see her

all her belongings were being dragged out of the trailer in giant black garbage bags and dumped in the yard the men doing the job wore boots and dust masks I had not seen her since her two visits last year though I would have welcomed her in she is clearly getting evicted in a terrible invasive and humiliating way I was evicted that way once and it was awful and even though I only had one small box of stuff it was heart wrenching and part of me is still broken from the mess and shame of it

I am sick sick for her and so is my tender son there is nothing we can do except light a candle against the dark

friends if you have drunk or addicted people in your life remember how tremulous this time of year is for them and care for them as best you can without putting yourself in danger

Sunday, December 1, 2019

Are any of you following HBO’s series Watchmen if not please do I admit when I first glanced at it I thought it was basically more of the usual comic book superhero claptrap but it is not that not by a long shot it is a careful and heartbreaking and deep incision of American racism and generational trauma absolutely stunning thanks to my darling son for insisting that I watch

Three years ago today



I started moving in and I have never loved this house more many of you were with me from the beginning many of you found me during the extremely bad times and some of you during the Very Bad Times when I got forcefully retired and some of you found me at the beginning of my comfort which started when I was given social security and finally took my pension thank you each and every one of you for your outstanding generosity and your incredibly delicious hearts

we had three big flakes of snow this morning but it was enough for me to get excited and put out the Christmas Cow and to fill my advent calendar with Adventists chocolates and to start cooking beans for chili in case the power goes out

Happy December Darklings 

Saturday, November 30, 2019



I am done with Thanksgiving it is too much of too much I have pared my life too much to enjoy that kind of laden and the stress historically surrounding excess I will still bake I will still revel in my garden I will still eat creamy dangerous foods and my own ridiculous cakes but not all at one time not all on the same day I have only one person in my family now and I have long ago convinced my son that too much Christmas dinner was too much and if he wants to go to his father’s or his aunts to celebrate TG I am A Okay with that and I know his dad would love to see him I didn’t even eat dinner this year I just moved it around my plate like a recalcitrant child forced to eat peas I didn’t eat it last year either or the year before all I could think about this time was how much I wanted to take some of my own garden minestrone out of the freezer and eat it in my bee bowl


one thing I’ve done over the past year is stop using Amazon period I eventually discovered that I could find everything I couldn’t buy out here directly from the retailers I just had to time my purchases for a bit of a wait and the instant satisfaction of overnight delivery sorted itself out

the factory conditions at Amazon bothered me a great deal because I worked in those exact shitty conditions for years at The Big Airplane Factory even including the timed bathroom breaks but mostly it was random cars no longer Amazon marked vehicles driving up my road at random hours sometimes very young high school kids as one hopped out to deliver a package while the other got high in the car and after they dropped the package on my porch they took a photo of it on their phones to prove it was there and sent it to me

don’t think I’ve become all anti capitalism especially since I’m going to get my son’s iPhone today to hop on the dreaded shopping day leftover deal and also yesterday I bought my longed for cashmere sweater from Macy’s online marked down from $189.00 to $39.00 and I am way too pleased with myself about that

good morning Darklings it’s 28 degrees here and I’m heading out into the real world then I will become animal again at the beach

Thursday, November 28, 2019

I always think of this holiday as the day in which we gather with with our families of choice to eat and store fat like bears for the emotional physical mental and financial onslaught of the rest of the mayonnaise based holidays

yesterday I woke at one AM and could not get back to sleep and my stomach hurt and my head ached thanks to my useless insurance company refusing to pay for Doxepin a new medication New Nurse prescribed for insomnia to replace the last of the benzodiazepines I’ve been taking for insomnia for the past twenty years the useless insurance company has been holding this medication for a month now even though it is not a controlled substance even though it is simply an SSRI even though my useless insurance company has denied and fought with my physicians’ prescriptions for benzodiazepines for fourteen years I finally called the pharmacy and asked how much the medication costs asked if I could buy it without insurance and the pharmacist checked the price and told me it was $17.00

$17.00

my useless insurance company was withholding a medication designed to make me healthy that will allow me to wean myself off a very bad drug a new medication that costs me $17.00 without insurance and probably cost them mere pennies to manufacture for no apparent reason

I know I’m not the only one here that has realized that Big Pharma is now in charge of our healthcare

I am going to check the rest of my meds against the prices of my insurance covered meds and see if it is actually worth it to spend $50.00 a month on a company that is useless

I sent my son to the pharmacy to pick it up and while he was gone I fucked up a gorgeous pie crust with a failed pumpkin pie I have only made one failed pumpkin pie ever and that was in the 70s when I forgot to add eggs this pie failed because I bought organic pumpkin instead of pumpkin for pies and the organic pumpkin was just too wet my son was in Seattle at the time and I gave up and took to my bed in the Victorian fashion of ladies who got the vapors and watched Anthony Bourdain on Netflix for the entire rest of the day until nightfall when I took the Doxepin and proceeded to sleep for ten hours in a row

my son is here now I told him about the failed pie and he wanted me to run to the store and buy more pumpkin then make a new pie crust and bake him another pie


HHHHAAAAAHAAAHAHAHAAAaaaaaaa


no


I do have another secret pie crust in my fridge because it’s just as easy to make two as one and I have fresh strawberries and eggs and cream so I will make a vanilla pastry cream and then make a berry galette or he can make his own gd pie and we still have ice cream




I’m just here to eat potatoes and bread sloshing in butter and salad with candied pecans and cheese I am no one’s employee in my beautiful kitchen not any more

LIBERATION!




the last of the Red Delicious apple trees



photo by Page Loudon

this is what’s left of his orchard
good morning from the frozen upper left coast

read the whole story here and please don’t buy Cosmic Crisp apples they’re scary and mean

Tuesday, November 26, 2019

ps

And because I yam who I yam here’s a picture of the baby Jesus for those of you who observe













Pig and farm report


join me this morning for kaffe and apple cranberry kuchen especially if you have to go into The Outside today or for instance The Grocery Store

I sent my son for berries and cheese and greens I have everything else I need jengaed into the pantry and refrigerator by him because he gets panicky when there is not enough room and after living in that dank tiny house can you blame him and I get panicky when there is too much abundance too much food too much of anything but that is who I am we carry ourselves in our ways

I’ve taken to sending emails to myself as reminders as a way to stave off dementia or perhaps as I prefer to think because my big brain is just so busy up in there last night I found this creepy and baffling message I sent to myself a week ago

Re: Add raspberries and rubber gloves 

I don’t even want to consider what that recipe might have been

once again I am up against the onslaught of holiday memories in that woman’s house and memories of the winters I was homeless and the stark pain those memories bring but I no longer want to drug or drink or fuck or eat myself into unconsciousness in order to deal with them and I no longer dwell inside them I just stand in the wintery Skagit River in my tall boots and watch them rush by

these holidays are now for my son and me proudly and profoundly and for whomever else might be in need I bought a carful of groceries for the town’s food bank and diapers and toiletries for the homeless shelter there we have no such programs out here on the island though I know the hungry people are out here I recognize at least one red truck that has been camping (living) at the state park for months now a man and a woman I wish I could do something for them but they have built a little fortress for themselves and I understand that too the best I can do for now is look out for them keep my blue eyes on them make sure their truck and camping gear are safe when I walk into the trails I will never take anything for granted and I will never forget


I woke before dawn and threw six apples into the woods for the deer and the foxes and the rabbits then I came in and had kuchen and coffee and thawed out in front of the little propane fire later I will candy some pecans and later I just might decide to stay here in my house in my woods until January

Sunday, November 24, 2019

Pig and farm report



I woke up at 4:30 this morning and was immediately hungry so I brewed some coffee then ate a crapload of guacamole and chips but the chips were blue organic corn so it was totally healthy right? RIGHT? I know ugh then I had a panicattackoutofnowhere about ten minutes later my shoulders and neck tense my muscles threatening to roll and drop me so I took some Ativan

I thought I had escaped the long heavy awful scaled barbed tail of my family of birth nightmare holiday scenarios that had dragged behind me my entire life but now I have to wonder now I have to look honestly at myself instead of trying to force cheer from the outside in which it turns out can only flow along the surface for a short time this also explains the panic attacks I had for three days in a row when I baked the doomed challah so now that I’ve acknowledged it’s still there (I always knew) now that I’ve caught a glimpse of its root in the mirror I can carry on

yes and no but mostly yes

my son lithely dropped to the forest floor to shoot that mothership mushroom that is so huge it seems to be trying to lift my house from its foundation it is hubcap sized and strange and fantastic Thanksgiving will only be the two of us but I’m cooking for all his friends too who don’t have families as I always do for us it is a day to indulge in food I only eat once a year buttery rich dressing hollandaise sauce that took me years to perfect salad with candied pecans and Boursin cheese and raspberries mashed potatoes with real cream and of course pumpkin pie it is a day to relax and for my son who is remarkably normal it is a day in which he visits his friends and their families I used to cook for huge gatherings even in my tiny house friends who had no place to go and for a very long time for my ex husband which my son requested then I eventually lost touch with my friends or felt too uncomfortable around people to function and I realized that having my ex there was terrible because I had cooked for him for ten years without ever receiving a thank you when we were married and I knew when I stood in my kitchen one year making vegetarian mushroom gravy and was considering poisoning him that it would be his last meal at my house ever did I resent him for leaving my year old son and me to fend for ourselves with no child support forever you’re goddamned right I did and I still do

I am glad now that I was pushed out of the messy matrimonial bed where I was never happy to go to work in the factories to be self sufficient enough to put my son in private schools to care for him and build a home for us to watch him become such an outstanding human to teach and play music professionally to write and be published to eventually earn a union won pension to survive and thrive against all odds I am proud of what I have done

sorry to unload so so much on a late November morning ice crusted and rich with enough green for the whole wide world I was going to write about how funny it was that I made two pumpkin pies every Thanksgiving forever because the only pumpkin I saw in stores was Libby’s and it only came in the big can and I always had one pie too many but clearly my little train fell off its track and here we are with Prince Hal stealing this incredibly thick and soft plush throw that I bought here on the island he now patrols the blanket by marching up and down the back of the sofa like a crazed soldier fending off any would be pretenders to the throne for instance the other cats or my feet


good morning Darklings especially those of you who swim under water toward light this time of year good morning and godspeed 

Saturday, November 23, 2019

Radical self care



yesterday I took a luxury bath early then dried my hair with a hair dryer and did not watch or listen to the news nor did I check my twitter feed which is basically the news then I drove to the beach and ate vegetarian hash at the Cama Beach Cafe a tiny cafe in the far end of this lodge that I always call The Overlook Hotel the cafe itself is only five tables crammed into one end of this giant room and it’s always packed during the summer the food is delicious and the view of the forest and The Saratoga Passage is superb and I did not read a newspaper nor did I check my twitter feed I love how those two windows above that stone fireplace look like stained glass but that was just early morning light and the old growth forest that cradles us here after I took most of my breakfast to my car in a cardboard box I walked to the beach and stood there admiring the fog and breathing the salt water fragrance then I drove to the library and I did not listen to the news or check my twitter feed then I went to town and bought Yukon gold potatoes for my dinner next Thursday listening all the while to Neil Young’s new album Colorado in my car and I promise you it is superb and moving with his old band Crazy Horse and I was just bowled over by how much like Neil Young he sounded how clean and powerful his lyrics I came home and did not read my twitter feed nor did I listen to the news or turn on the television I ate one dark chocolate truffle and lounged about and then I swept the deck free of pine needles and walked the perimeter of my woods my haven it has been a year and a week since I tumbled and fell in the woods in the black night in my nightgown and my knee has finally completely healed in one week it will have been three years since I got the keys for this house my house and we started frantically moving out of that awful rotten place in the city later on I read by the fire and heated up my giant pot of soup and I did not check the news nor did I look at my twitter feed I ate soup and bread and went to bed and watched my favorite Christmas movie It’s A Wonderful Life and fell asleep with the movie on and slept all night through for the first time in weeks hello hello out there please be surviving the horrible crushing in of the mayonnaise based holidays be safe and give yourself a day of delicious pampering 

Thursday, November 21, 2019

The flea’s smörgåsbord

It has been too long of a day for me to string together enough cohesive words to make a sentence but the power of christ compels me haha not really I watched the impeachment hearing this morning and at the break I went to the Skagit River to watch the snow geese arrive along with several hawks including a red tailed hawk and seven bald eagles and a great blue heron feasting on fresh water eelgrass that springs up in the tide waters on the fields I just ate the wide river the rocks the trees lining its bank with my whole stupid heart then I went to the Skagit Valley Co-op for organic veggies for soup which looked like this on my table




no filters on that photo no lights on in the kitchen just clean freezing cold sunlight I woke to 33 degrees and it never got warmer the soup has veggie stock and celery and onion and fennel and turnips and leek and red cabbage and zucchini and a random can of tomatoes I cooked it for the rest of the day except for my tearing chunks off the toddler sized six braid challah that I made a couple days ago then dropped that I kept dipping in the soup for dinner

this had to be the worst sentence ever

I dosed all three cats with super duper flea medicine last Wednesday and those little fuckers jumped ship (mostly Hal who never leaves my side) and bit me in the tender insides of my elbow and my ankle and my elsewheres and now I’m exhausted and my blog is being blog fuckery again and I haven’t been able to post any more pix except I’ll try this last one





Okay that actually worked none of this is what I wanted to write either but look at Friday yep ❄️ I got out my long johns literally I’m ready maybe tomorrow I can write about how the cornfields were were warm enough and the ground frost bit enough this morning to make low fog dance through them like wraiths


Tuesday, November 19, 2019

And the hits just keep on coming!

Even though I typed the previous post on my laptop my beautiful shiny well loved laptop for some reason blogger wouldn't let me post it wouldn't even let me save it so I copied it and sent it to myself in an email and then I restarted my laptop at which point everything seemed to work and I pasted my email onto the blog page and it published and now it looks wonky and out of whack which really makes a lot of sense is Mercury in retrograde I don't even believe that Mercury in retrograde makes any difference in the day to day sense of anything but it's as good as believing in an angry god at this point


onward and upward!

Friday, November 15, 2019

The blue hour

I have been awake since 4:30 this morning listening to the rain caught in a bit of fairy magik during the quiet that happens when waking after my guts feel sorry and strained then calm it’s still dark one or two cats purring at my feet or near my side the day has not yet intruded my email goes untended the house is settled the day still out of reach shiny as a wrapped present and I read a little bit usually the online version of The Paris Review or some other journal to the blue glow of my iPad this is when my brain works at maximum flow this is the time in which I should write but more often than not I just lie in bed under my snow white comforter and bask until the owls hoo their wake up question I don’t know when exactly I became a morning person I think it must have been when the composer disbanded the orchestra and I stopped going to rehearsals every Tuesday at 7 pm then went out after to The Berkshire Grill with everyone until very late then woke too early to get to work on time I used to practice at night and write at night inside my most creative self but now that I have the forest and the sea to care for mornings have become touchstones they have become magik the fairy time in between sleep and solid wakefulness

I will watch the impeachment hearings this morning as much of them as I can stand yesterday when Nancy Pelosi was speaking and msnbc broke in on her to report yet another school shooting I sat on my soft raincloud of a sofa and sobbed after that I fried a huge pan of onions and potatoes and ate them at the kitchen table with my son while we talked about how these children their parents and the first responders the survivors will probably suffer the rest of their entire lives with trauma and addiction and PTSD related illnesses my son told me about a high school student he worked with at the nursery who said he was looking forward to graduation if I can get there without being shot we all grew up with danger there were no good old days but nothing like this fear this constant worry about being gunned down in the cafeteria or library at school and yet the tiny vile man in charge of the country could not be bothered to tweet concern until five hours later and even then it was clear that he didn’t write it himself as it was spelled correctly without random caps as his gestapo captain Mitch stops gun control bills at their birth

my son is going to take over the kitchen today and bake cookies and I will be happy to wander in and eat cookie dough with a spoon and listen to the television as long as I can stand it

Good morning Darklings may you find a spark of magik for yourself today may it hold back the shadows


Sunday, November 10, 2019

Christmas Cow



I have become that person and I don't care the Christmas cow fills me with light and joy and good humor and hot chocolate and melted cheese and tinsel and candy and figs because you have to admit she's funny the bell around her neck actually rings dear bog

I have felt this specific joy for six years now especially around the mayonnaise based holidays that used to pinch and anger and hurt I wondered once if I would ever get through a Christmas morning without sobbing I wrote last year about holding Christmas in my heart like Jesus and that is precisely how I feel again only obscenely early (according to my darling son) my darling son is one of the main reasons I feel so goddamn jolly that and the fact that I've been able to save $5000.00 this year by socking away money a set amount every payday and each time I wanted a book and got a library book instead I put the money the book would have cost me into my savings account and that gray cashmere sweater at Macy's I've been looking at and pining for each time I finally decide to buy it I instead put that sweater money in my savings account and each time I wanted to buy anything impulsive I resisted and saved the money and here I am flush at almost Christmas

I spent four hours today building a lasagna for my son a lasagna with bechamel and marinara and ricotta and mascarpone and mushrooms and fresh chopped spinach and zucchini and onion a couple months ago I had to replace my six year old iPhone because the phone could no longer support the OS other than that the phone looked brand new because I really barely use it the new phone was fucking expensive and now my son's phone no longer holds a charge so I told him I would buy him one in December because I depend on him to have one so I can call him if for instance I fall on my head and break my neck and need to call for help and because he does so much for me I don't write about it here but I am not able to function well on my own for more than a month at a time I haven't been able to work since before I lost my job at the big airplane company the truth is my son is my caregiver the truth is I am crazier than you might think and I need help a lot of help sometimes oftentimes I cannot even drive myself to the store much less clean pine needles off the roof and that boy man saves my life all the time so I told him yep on payday December 1 I will buy him a new phone but I told him they are exorbitant so that's probably all he's going to get for Christmas

BUT...

I lied!

yep and I have already bought all his Christmas gifts including a gorgeous cozy lumberjack plaid giant blanket for his bed a grown up stick blender and a brand new iPad because he has never had a computer of his own and he keeps asking me to watch videos on his phone which makes me bonkers but mostly because he is an amazing human being who never complains about anything he is so exceptional I can't even believe it

the lasagna is in the oven my son is on his way home so I have to hide the Christmas cow for one more month and I am happy in my deep stupid heart

love to you Darklings in this green season

Friday, November 8, 2019

post script

This is for Mary it’s the first time I’ve made this bread with pesto and good heavens it is glorious and every time I bake bread I gain a deeper understanding of gluten and yeast once you understand that science baking can be art here is the process in four steps

1. Rolled out risen dough  with pesto shredded cheese and sun dried tomatoes this dough is enriched with one egg and 3 tablespoons of olive oil to make it pliable

















2. Once it’s rolled like cinnamon rolls and cut down the middle arrange it in an S shape on silpat lined baking sheet let it rise again














3. Bake it for 40 minutes at 350 degrees because of the pesto this loaf took 47 minutes

















4. Show off closeup of melted cheese and me drooling




Pig and farm report

I have been just okay for the past three days and yesterday I was okay and today I woke up hungry and as I was sitting in my bed drinking Actual Real Coffee I decided to bake bread because I am still too weak to drive when Hal and Jupiter came tearing across my bed knocking the coffee cup out of my hand onto my snowy snowy white expensive beloved duvet cover so I got up unzipped the cover pulled it off my down comforter in a flurry of feathers

it was a serious flurry
SERIOUS

I don’t know why it was so leaky inside there but I headed out into the 38 degree 5AM morning shook the feathers out on my porch tossed the duvet in the washing machine then took the comforter out and shook it too sending enough feathers into my forest to terrify any bird of any size ever

then I just stood there and breathed I have probably written too much here about how good it smells here in the forest always this deep fragrance of wood smoke and sea salt and  rain and pine trees and tall willowy madronas with their show offy red bark and underneath the bright green damp forest floor my darling trees I poured a fresh cup of coffee lit the propane fire and watched the sun rise through the thick woods across the road I turned on my little corner lamp in the outer outer room and the lamp to to my left that looks like a tree with a small lantern hanging from its branch and watched the two cars that go to work from the house that is a mile away down the hill behind me and I wondered if they missed my brave morning little lamps in my still curtainless house the only lights on this long stretch of road these small joys that sustain me

once the duvet cover was washed and dried it took me three hours to wrestle it back onto my comforter and my shoulders and back ached from it because I am more than a little bit weak and it is a horrible thing to do and there is no goddamn easy way around it like folding fitted sheets but wouldn’t they be easier if the buttons or zippers on a duvet cover were on the side instead of at the bottom?

I defrosted a pint jar of marinara I made last January and a small jar of  pesto I made from my garden this summer then I opened and drained some sun dried tomatoes from their oil and found a chunk of Gouda in the back of my fridge this is the stuffing for my bread I will eat it dipped the marinara for lunch and dinner and probably breakfast and lunch tomorrow my son is helping his father clear the orchard of the last of the apple and cherry trees no more apples for us the whole situation makes me deeply sad as that orchard was Page’s inheritance and yes my ex will get a shit ton of money for selling the property and yes he still has his gorgeous house with its steps leading down to Lake Osoyoos but still the trees the hundred year old fruit trees

I had some other things I wanted to tell you revelations large and small for instance how eye opening and liberating it was to realize that I can just say no when asked to step on the scale at a doctor’s office a horrific trigger point for me that wakes up my early abuse memories it isn’t against the law to do so just.         No.     but I’m tired again and I have bread dough to stuff

my timer rang time to go check on the first rise meanwhile here’s a photo of the majestic graceful feral feline Prince Hal



Tuesday, November 5, 2019

Pig and farm report


Attempting to gather enough energy into my body to climb into the bathtub as we apparently barrel into xmess without once pausing to consider any other part of the season I am grateful for the sentry trees that guard me the huge six point dark furred buck that astonished me by looking into my bedroom window the striking beauty of the ever changing November sky the roses still hanging onto their brave stems in spite of politics for my brilliant son who cares for me and is pretty much the only white man in Terrible America who does not fill me with disgust and dread for my down comforter for warm blankets for a winter coat that fits and shoes without holes in them and for a house generous and warm and welcoming for a full pantry for a car that runs without hiccups thank you thank you gods of the unknowable world

Sunday, November 3, 2019

Christmas cactus blooming in the redrum kitchen at Summer’s End I bought that little cactus the day I moved into this house almost three years on December 23rd




Dear Darklings I have been absent due to a long horrifying bout of the flu today day 15 I regained my appetite after living on broth and saltines for two weeks I realized I have never had the flu before and that’s because flu shots were free and handed out to everyone in the big airplane factory this year I dawdled dear friends take my word for it do not dawdle 

that’s it 💯 of  nothing else has happened to me

xo

Thursday, October 17, 2019

Pig and farm report


every morning after I wake up I want to write then I get busy in the day and I lose that impulse this is 90% caused by the news cycle out of the white house which amazingly gets worse every single day and still nothing has happened to the tiny pig fucker king today after I heard about Elijah Cummings’ death I thought these people are just sliding off the earth's skin which has become dangerously slippery then I thought I am only two years younger than Elijah Cummings then I thought yikes

in the past few days I have put the winter sweater on the outside spigot I know sweater is not the actual name for it but it looks like a milk engorged styrofoam breast and connects with a rubber band then I took my car in for an oil change my son cleared the roof of pine needles and pine branches  this is all boring and way more exciting in my head

here is my autumnal table all the tomatoes and roses gone now pears and apples and garnet yams that iridescent pumpkin soup tureen was the second thing I bought for the house after I bought the gravy boat that I coveted for so many years and I have not yet put soup in the tureen or gravy in the boat but I am not sorry I bought them


yesterday I asked my son to drive me to the co-op in Mount Vernon for organic vegetables so I can make minestrone on the way I saw a huge coyote standing in a field of frozen pumpkins and the Stillaguamish River which runs under the bridge that connects the island to the mainland has been partially diverted to build a new lake and park and I think the salmon must be running there because the entire body of water was filled with snow geese with their black tipped white wings honking away they are noisy and spectacular and this explains why the birders have been lurking about and I flushed this pheasant out of a marsh when I squatted to pee in a cornfield (the cornfields are done don't worry) O he was huge and such a surprise to both of us


I saw New Nurse twelve days ago and she told me that I could buy the doxazosin I had originally taken for PTSD induced anxiety which my insurance denied me for fairly cheap at Walmart truly I was in no hurry to go back to Walmart and truly I didn't understand why my insurance would let me buy meds at Walmart but not at my regulation drug store so I farted around and continued to take the prazosin instead which accosted me with gross side effects including constant nausea and my first ever yeast infection SERIOUSLY GROSS SIDE EFFECTS so maybe you are chortling at me now which is also my first ever use of the word chortle in writing ever maybe you are wondering how I could possibly be so dense so yes I chortled too because it took me twelve days and thirty years to figure out that I could buy meds without my insurance company's permission as long as I had the paper prescription in my hands so I called Rite Aid another pharmacy close to me and asked them how much their doxazosin cost and they told me $12 so I bought it 

what the hell what the fucking hell Rebecca???

was I so locked into the Big Pharma machine that I could not figure this out on my own?
was I incredibly naive?
was I six years old or what?

all of this speculation of my dumb aside I have not had the terrible free floating anxiety since I started on the doxazosin over a month ago it is for now absent from me gone and I've been sleeping every night and today the wind is up and strong and I might lose power but even if I do I will be okay I'm making soup I'm cooking oatmeal in my wee slow cooker the cats are on my bed and all is well all is well in my world

hello hello Darklings from Summer's End where the table is laden and the coyotes are watching

















Thursday, October 10, 2019

I have spent most of the last two days trying not to puke but I wanted to tell you that there is a creative nonfiction excerpt from Queer Wing-ed right here with amazing art from Swedish performance artist Leif Holmstrand

Guest editor Johannes Goransson called it “a breakneck maximalist excerpt”

Ooohhhhhhhhhhhhh!

Thank you Darklings

Wednesday, October 9, 2019

Dear John, I miss your voice happy birthday


Tuesday, October 8, 2019

Pig and farm report

this post is fractious and blinky and discursive
I lost power three times last night in the middle of the night in the middle of the night I call your name oh Yoko oh Yoko
at 11:30 pm for two hours then again at 1:30 am for 45 minutes then again at 2:15 am
Oh Yoko oh Yoko
the fuckery of insomnia and smoke alarms that emit a loud sad Disneyfied nose whistle as they shut themselves off

no dizziness today but I am punched in the stomach
I thought after 1989 i.e. the cocaine years I would be done with withdrawal
but the universe says NO the universe says ANSWER HAZY ASK AGAIN TOMORROW
I don’t know whether to recite the Serenity Prayer or the Boy Scout Oath

my son is here my darling good boy my situation has caused him stress so he is rearranging my cupboards and my refrigerator and my pantry in his way which is to stack everything neatly according to size and then pushing everything in the back in order to make more room he does not understand that the cans of tomatoes have to go with the tomato paste because he is not a cook but I am grateful that he is here I love his steady presence so I will wait until he leaves to put the sugar back with the flour and the beans back with the rice also he took me to breakfast where we saw a black sky across an extraordinarily bright meadow to the south and a sunny sky with popcorn clouds and fluffy goddamn angels to the north and two rainbows and the Stillaguamish River stormsurging up to its grassy lip

hello for now hello hello

day 4

Monday, October 7, 2019

A quick post in which feral cats eat my eyeballs


Wolf finally let me take a photo of her she is usually so shy and mostly under furniture Prince Hal is still scrawny and always will be last night I lay in my tub with my head underwater which is how I pretend swim when it’s too cold to get in the lake and when I sat up I got extremely dizzy like seriously scary dizzy and pulled the plug out with my toe in case I drowned and all three cats came in the bathroom and stared at me and I thought about crawling out of the tub and fainting and banging my head on the slate wall and languishing dead there until my son came around to visit if you can languish while dead that is then I thought about the cats running out of food and then they would eventually have to eat me because I would be meat eventually what happened is I am on my third day of weaning myself completely off Klonopin a benzodiazepine I’ve been taking since 2005 under New Nurse’s supervision of course but it still shook me but here I am still slightly dizzy with both eyes and etcetera intact hello from Narnia winter I’ll be back when the waves stop rocking under my feet


Friday, October 4, 2019

pee ess

I’m also staying away from twitter today since my feed (this always makes me think of horse feed which in turn makes me think of feedbags which are attached to a horse’s head so he can eat and eat and eat which in turn feels exactly like twitter) is full of bombos large and small politics photos of starving animals writers whimpering about rejection etcetera here I am the 4th of October gently treading across the ocean’s bottom to avoid dredging up mysteries

and still, there are roses


they aren’t fancy or cultivated just wild strong resilient climbers below my deck they are blood red though the photo I took this morning makes them look pink but here is proof of beauty they give me such hope in spite of this week’s panic attack I have been free from the horrible floating anxiety that plagued me for months for almost three weeks now

I am so thankful for the Johnny Cash Psychiatrist pushing me for two years straight to figure out the difference between panic and anxiety in myself though at the time it seemed like an endless repetition of where were you what were you feeling what did you think was going to happen how long did it last and now I know deep in my body that the panic won’t last but the anxiety is a different beast also I remember my last appointment with him when I used his bathroom then couldn’t find the trash bin then had a panic attack right in front of him which caused him to panic and he made me lie down and he gave me a giant triangle shaped Ativan that was apparently  just rattling around in his desk then he retired then died right after that and my brother told me he had seen his obituary and I was pretty sure I killed him

I swept my floors this morning (and collected enough cat hair to make a sweater for a small child) so I can mop later I ate red beans and rice and made an executive decision to keep the television off I need a break from the endless stress inducing news cycle once my bones thaw (from walking around outside early morning in my nightgown but it smells like Jesus’s own summer camp out there) I’m going to the beach then to the farmers market for now I’m sitting by my little propane fire place watching the feral kittens play with a three foot long black string with plastic aglets on its tips that appears to be a shoestring from a size 47 man’s shoe I’ve no idea where it came from but I bet this winter when some tent size thing flaps open I’ll have my answer the kittens have been running through the house holding it by its ends as it drags behind their bodies like the world’s longest mouse tail

Hello Darklings hello is it winter where you live do you have a pumpkin on your porch Jupiter the Magnificent Witchy Cat sends black cat regards from Summer’s End to you


Thursday, October 3, 2019


17 of these eerie jellyfish stranded themselves on my beach two days ago maybe they were warning me not to go to Walmart with my son where I wandered around found a soft pink fleece hoodie for $11.00 then had a panic attack so severe standing there gripping the hoodie in the middle of the almost empty store that my heart hammered and gripped my chest and my shoulder muscles cramped then rolled into my neck then rolled up the back of my head I had to stop two strangers and tell them I can’t find the cashier and I can’t find my son then I think I’m having a panic attack

the man and woman were surprisingly kind as they guided me to the front of the store and my son who was waiting for me there he paid for the hoodie soft and fleecy pink and I held onto his arm and we made it to his truck

I was and still am humiliated
please don’t tell me that this is okay that I am okay
I’m not okay I felt like I was in a fender bender for two days after
do not don’t ever tell me to breathe ever

I didn’t want to write it here but when something big or awful happens I can’t write here my diary without writing through it

I am embarrassed to have my crazy out in the world I don’t feel okay about it





Side note:

I honestly believe at this juncture that the tiny pig fucker king could shoot or stab someone on the White House lawn then walk up the steps to his helicopter and calmly fly away with absolutely no consequences 

it is an extremely dangerous time to live in Terrible America
for all of us


ps. In order to end on a happier note I confess that I had double caramel ice cream bars for breakfast and for dinner today 

Sunday, September 29, 2019

mourning the end of tomato season


this might be the last tomato its tender alien beauty those imprecise swollen lobes its dark green eye its strong heart I picked it this morning after a dark and stormy night it is pecked with rain and a wee bit soft but I will eat it with mayonnaise on dark rye bread and I will savor every single drop of its sugary tomato blood

damn

I stood in the garden in my pajamas just a few minutes ago and yelled at the potatoes to stop growing what even the hell everything else is politely dying back but the potatoes those lumpy attention whores wave their leaves that continue to feed the blacktail deer who use my garden as their salad buffet and those damn potatoes grow and grow and grow and grow oblivious unable to read the room the bumptious clowns of the hidden root underworld

it’s 43 degrees I lit the fire and drank three maybe twelve cups of coffee it has been almost a week since I’ve had deep river soul slamming anxiety is it too early to hope that the prozasin is actually working where the less expensive doxazosin did not is it folly to hope maybe but I’m going to run with my functioning self while I am here inhabiting my brain I am going to savor it while it’s here

Hello Darklings and greetings from the stormy Salish Sea




Saturday, September 28, 2019

god's candy


I drove to the Skagit Valley Food Co-op in Mount Vernon today because there is a dire lack of fresh fruit out here on the island except for hard little apples and soon to be ripe pears I drove after I ate a bowl of black beans with butter it was 43 degrees impossibly cold for late September and it was sunny with looming black bottomed thunderheads to the east above the Cascade Mountains I stopped at the Skagit River and watched for a while then I drove past the cornfields lining the old highway I saw a hawk low in the wheat hunting a culvert the derelict barns the tiny taco stands the strange chicken coop that is an exact replica of The Overlook Hotel the yard with all the dahlias the pumpkins bursting out the corn being sold 8 for $1.00 on the side of the road my beloved Dari-Delite then I went into the store and found (cue the hallelujah chorus from Handel's Messiah) these gorgeous figs the must luscious fruits on the planet and some baseball sized plums and ripe apples and some fresh baked garlic naan and then and then and then

I had a panic attack

right there at check out my heart started pounding fast faster my face was hot I was talking too fast to the the girl who was bagging my groceries 

ohhiyournameisAnaïsyou'renamedafterafamousauthorthesefigsareamazing
solateintheseasonblahblahblahblahblahblahblahblahblahblahblahblahblah

I barely made it to my car before my head exploded embarrassed as usual caught found out feeling stupid feeling exposed because I can hear myself I can feel that awful engine revving up the words frothing out of me standing there in my summer dress and winter boots with the furry insides

I took that picture of the figs on my lap before I started the car because I knew I would be eating them on the way home

when  I got home I read for a while then I put a cup of oatmeal in an old sock tied a knot at its hole and threw it in the bathtub and imagined myself being the kind of woman who can soak in a bathtub with lit candles and silky water reading a book and maybe eating figs for a long relaxing time but instead I was the kind of woman who sits in the tub reads two pages before she splashes water on the book then rubs a sock full of soggy oats over her dry legs just as her black cat comes in knocks her soap off the edge of the tub and skitters it across the bathroom floor

my skin does feel better though

for the seven minutes I was languishing in the bathtub I considered how I used to be beautiful not stunning but basic white girl beautiful long of legs and fingers good cheek bones blueblue eyes but like most of us I didn't know it until I was almost old I did think I was charismatic though now I realize I just vibrated faster than everyone else my squirrel soul running running always on the run oftentimes literally I was and still am driven I think my inner storms drew certain people in quite frequently dangerous people I think now I was complicated and obsessive and unsettled with really great hair

and this vibrating this unsettled heart is where art comes from for me this vibrating allows me to bend into Beethoven to force out poems to move forward in intellectual circles to think deep and wide to fool everyone

that's all the introspection I can stand today I'm in my bed alone with Prince Hal curled nearby a belly full of figs a superb slightly damp book and the absolute certainty that now at 66 years old I am once again beautiful

Good evening Darklings here I am my own face with it crags and wrinkles which I love in real time it is nearly October can you even believe it?





Friday, September 27, 2019

ps.

ever since I moved here the hallway closet doorknob has not properly latched shut but I never worried about it because none of the brooms or other cleaning devices ever escaped the other night my son showed me how he had cleverly wrapped three rubber bands around the outside doorknob to the inside doorknob thus creating a bit of hold I saw what he had done and told him in my outside voice to remove them because I won’t have this house smarmed up with duct tape which is how I pretty much held everything together in the old house from cracked windows to our beds to the freezer door that nightmare place was a duct tape hovel and once I bought this house I swore there would never be one piece of duct tape or any other quick fix solution anywhere here ever ever my son of course walked away from my frothing this morning I awoke to find the rubber bands missing I immediately panicked and began walking around inspecting the beauty carpet for them because of the cats and trust me once you have pulled a rubber band out of a cat’s butt you never want to do it again ever ever not a one to be found I panicked

I grew cold with fear









later my son showed up and told me he removed the offending rubber bands after I went to bed







which is why I successfully bought a hallway doorknob the other day




THE END.
holy crap I have been attacking the regulation mold that grows on my window frames here because of  mostly rain all the time with vinegar and toothbrushes and baking soda for almost three years scrub a dub dub lalala and today I accidentally discovered a way to remove it pretty much instantly with no scrubbing



WHAT???



I am 100% stunned and also I feel a little embarrassed because I have bought and lost thousands of these since I moved in (they have to be somewhere right they don’t just disappear right ha) I swear to baby buddha’s underpants that this is in no way an advert just a holy shit moment in housekeeping 






















This has been a Radish King public service announcement 



Wednesday, September 25, 2019

Equinox


this is the first time in 14 or 15 years that I have missed posting on the Equinox but there have been goblins in my head on account of cigna my prescription insurance company deciding I could no longer take doxazosin for no apparent reason

which means a return of daily ptsd related panic attacks
which means no sleep
which means panic at the thought of panic
and no sleep

Crazy right?

New Nurse told me she couldn't get cigna my prescription insurance company on the phone that she has prescribed tons of doxazosin for many of her patients on medicare without a problem ever so she switched me to prazosin which is basically the same drug only stronger and instead of a month's supply of doxazosin for $7 I now have to buy a month's supply of prazosin for $70 exactly that and it has taken me quite a while to adjust to prazosin including almost constant nausea so I called my regulation doctor and asked to get my promethazine which I have taken on and off for three years for nausea refilled but cigna my prescription insurance company told him I could no longer take promethazine but I could take zofran which cigna my prescription insurance company told me three years ago I couldn't have because it was a controlled narcotic also promethazine $10 zofran $30

basically I now pay cigna my prescription insurance company $50 a month to be MY DOCTORS it is crazy yes I am crazy and this post is ugly with all those meds named but it is hard not to think that cigna my prescription insurance company really just wants me to pay more money to the pharmaceutical companies that control my well being even my normal state of paranoia sees the fault line there even my crazy can call utter bullshit

other than constant nausea I have been loopy as hell but not tired which has turned out to be rather haphazard for me because I keep falling into furniture and bumping into walls and tripping over my own good sense for instance I carried a bowl of yogurt into my bedroom a few days ago and slammed myself into the highboy and dropped the yogurt on it and on my beautiful rug and believe me that yogurt flew and last night I decided to glue my glasses back together with superglue and after I punctured the tiny hole in the tube it glurgled out all over me and I glued my hand

I seriously should have taken a photo of that good god my hand turned white and instead of taking immediate action I continued gluing my glasses as the glue bonded itself to me for eternity then I spent most of last evening scrubbing my hand in old nail polish remover and surfboard wax remover then picking it off now my hand is red as a lobster claw

clearly I can't and won't drive
or shop
or dance
or go for a walk in my own goddamned forest

I did pick what seems to be the last of my vegetable garden including these hugeass potatoes that I planted last year along with some tomatillos and chilies and prickly cucumbers


I made a shit ton of strawberry jam without pectin which means I stood over my stove for an hour stirring and breathing in the strawberry sugar and I might have eaten an entire jar of it as I did so last night before I glued my hand I made a large jar of salsa verde with the tomatillos and peppers and some onion and some cilantro and some lime simple and delicious and green




yes yep uh huh this post is every bit as boring as I expected it to be and I apologize there is a lot of noise in my head right now mostly worry over getting my brain righted in its rotten housing and politics

I did successfully buy a new doorknob for the hallway closet

baby steps Bob, baby steps

one more photo of my beach this morning then I'll fold this post eleven times and put it in an envelope and leave it in the middle of the forest for the bears to find

hello and love from Summer's End where it really is for true autumn