On The Crest

Today is a big anniversary
Instead of planning a cute nursery
I look at my life
In shadowy strife

Today marks a fair number of years
Since the day I could have spared myself tears
And look what I’ve done
And not what I’ve won

Today tries to shun most fleeting pleasures
And reconsiders inherent treasures
Be gone now, regret
I have paid my debt

Today passes seasons in such bold hurry
Minutiae flecks my weary eyes blurry
The end of each June
Comes often too soon

Today I break through adversary.

My Really Thick Skull

She tells me
over and
over and
over again

but she called
to tell me.

She called.

She tells me
I’m a caring friend
I’m fun to talk to
I’m a good guy.

What does it mean?

She tells me she’s
drawing the friend line
pretty hard.

She tells me
we can’t classify
“hanging out” as dates but
I make her agree to hang out.

She tells me
it’s not me.

She tells me
she has waning interest
she has lack of interest
she’s not interested

but she called
to tell me.

She called.

Faux Cussing, Quasi Frustration

I’ve been avoiding calls and texts for two months. Such avoidance generally means I’m no longer interested.

I went to play dominos and scum at another apartment tonight.

The object of my evasion happened to walk in.

He told me to call him sometime, that he left a few messages, but I didn’t return his calls.

Well, duh. Of course I didn’t.

He didn’t ask how long I’ve been back.

But he did see me being social.

Which, I’m usually not.

Perhaps my lack of communication makes me a hypocrite.

Easily I could morph into my mother or dad.

Very easily.

So, am I avoiding the outright lie, or am I abandoning him? Is it even the same thing?

Thing is, I’ve made no promises. No commitments.

I just am not all that interested.

But I’m prepared to be upfront about it.

I’ll have to give him a call.

He can take it.

Dissection, Part 1

I’m somewhat a reactionary person. What’s on the surface sometimes has nothing to do with what’s just below the surface, which usually has a lot to do with what’s deeper.

This particular journey started a year and a half ago, when I had this reaction to some news I received.

It started to end a week and a half ago, when I arrived in Utah. Before I left Florida, I emailed my biological father, asking him what his plans are, and that I had an appointment to talk with an immigration lawyer on Tuesday, June 22.

When the plane landed in Salt Lake City, I texted Biodad, asking him if he was still in the country, and that if he didn’t respond to the text or my email within the next day I would cancel the appointment.

Within the next hour he texted back, saying that he was still in the country, and that he’d be moving back to the Philippines for good in December. He asked when a good time to call would be. I told him Saturday afternoon.

I was hopeful about not meeting with the lawyer.

The next day was Friday. I woke up early to meet with a friend on campus. Later that afternoon Biodad called, and I answered. He asked me if I would still meet with the lawyer and ask about how much the services would cost, and if they were too expensive, he’d go back to the Philippines.

Maybe I should back up a little bit.

A few months earlier, he asked me for a favor, and over the phone, he sounded pretty bashful. He knows I recently obtained American citizenship, and he wanted to know if I would do a paternity test with him so that he could use his blood relationship as grounds to apply for a green card.

He said he didn’t want it to be like he was using me.

He expressed absent-father guilt, saying if he could stay in the United States, he’d be able to spend time with me. He’d help me pay for school, he’d buy me this thing or that thing. He’d pay for the paternity test.

I told him I would think about it.

At the beginning of my New York/Florida trip, which was the beginning of May, I scheduled an appointment with an immigration lawyer. The consultation was free; it would be useful. I texted Biodad, but he did not respond.

So a week and a half ago, when we were talking on the phone, his quality time with me is suddenly conditional. Lawyers are expensive. Obtaining a green card is expensive.

His efforts to maintain contact have not been consistent. In the past year and a half, eight straight months lapsed without a single call or text.

Six months ago, after Christmas, he sent me a Christmas text. He called a few weeks later to explain his silence: his wife was visiting from the Philippines.

And last month? when I was debating to go forward with the lawyer and didn’t hear from him until a week and a half ago? One of his daughters was in town (somewhere in Alabama), pregnant. She gave birth to a baby girl on May 15.

When people stop talking to me, I think either it’s because they’re trying not to lie to me outright, or they’ve abandoned me, stopped caring about me, somehow helped create the dark vacuum that I’ve been sucked into. This is a sick (unhealthy) way to react, I know, but I grew up in a very noncommunicative family. The wounds run deep.

I mean, of course life happens. People get absorbed, focused, busy. On a fundamental level, I understand that. But the reality of it is, when he doesn’t have time to talk to me because he has a wife – who is not my mother – visiting, and when he doesn’t respond to something he thought was important – AND that he INITIATED – because his daughter and brand new baby granddaughter are immediately present, his intentions weaken. I can no longer hold him to his word. His promises dissolve into nothing. He simply cannot divide his attention. He’s already let me down too many times to expect that. Another chance is out of the question.

And then – and THEN – he reminded me that last Sunday was Fathers’ Day. Then, just to be spiteful, I reminded him he forgot my birthday. He said that wouldn’t happen again.

I didn’t end up calling him on Fathers’ Day. I may not be a very good person sometimes or even a good daughter, but I am not his daughter, at least in the same sense that he is not my father.

Last Tuesday, I met with the lawyer, and she said some things that made a lot of sense and brought great clarity to the situation. She ended up saving me money and further grief. We shook hands, and I left her office. Before I could exit the building, sobs ambushed me, similar to how I reacted a year and a half ago. I stepped outside and took a deep breath, then I walked the four blocks in the bright sunshine to the bus stop.

This Summer’s Solstice Is My Soul’s Poultice

Bless this sunshine.

Fifteen hours of it yesterday, and I’m in a part of the world where I can enjoy it with the least amount of whining.  It surprises me just as much to find myself declaring Utah such a dandy place. The mountains are green with the slightest veinings of snow at their summits, pushing the clouds higher, clearing the sky.  The lows are in the 50s and the highs graze the 80s; the lack of humidity allows one to actually feel the temperature range and even the difference between standing in the shade and under the sun in the middle of the day. It’s neat.

I feel I can breathe.

Yesterday was also the first day of class for the summer term. I was up before the sunrise, just because I can’t seem not to sleep in. I prepared for the day, caught the bus, went to class, went for a run, took a shower, did my homework, wrote for a little bit, went to hang out with the church group at the bishop’s home in Pleasant Grove; we picked strawberries and watched chickens and enjoyed the summer evening air until 9:45, when the sun seemed reluctantly to set. I got home, then my day got even more interesting.

The night air was cool, but not bracing. That only meant getting out of the hot tub was that more refreshing. The time spent before and after that thermal dip sets the tone for my summer.

Oh man, does it ever.

I walked back to my apartment and toweled off and got dressed. I went to bed a little after midnight and ended up waking up at 2:45 this morning. My mind was racing, and I loved it. I finally settled down after an hour and woke up again at 6am, then my day began as usual.

It’s interesting how summer days unfold.

A little text from my phone, outbound: “It was nice spending some time face to face. My thumbs definitely appreciate the break. : )”

In response: “I feel we accomplished much more in the few minutes than days of thumb reps!”

I met with an immigration lawyer today about an immigration issue. The discussion boiled down to somebody sucking an egg. That somebody is neither I nor the lawyer.

Summer feels really good so far. Keep it coming.


In the galley, my shackles clink as I rouse. They say the rest of the fleet is gone, destroyed. The bow slowly slices the horizon, and our synchronized oars obey the coxswain’s rhythmic commands: stroke, stroke.

The vessel lunges forward, forward. Our bodies move in unison, backward, counter to our progress.

The air smells of rot. Death has gone sour.

Our lungs huff and hum, and arms pull and legs push. The skin we shed is the grime that cakes in the creases of our throats and the crooks of our elbows. We never molt completely. Never down here.

The chains drag and swing, thud and clack. It becomes a dance, and I hear it in my sleep. It makes me sleepy.

Light peeks through a porthole. A point. It perks my pupils.

Your eyes used to be empty, too.

Eventually shadows fade, booming subsides, and we hear cheers on deck.

We keep rowing, rowing.

While off the Radar

I went to Montreal:

Vodpod videos no longer available.

And to a 70s dance party:

Explored Dumbo:
Went hiking:
Visited the Brooklyn Botanic Gardens:
Visited where the Chosen rest:
Grooved at one of the best concerts ever:
Went to the beach:
Picked blueberries:
Fed my vanity:
Played with cuties:
I did a lot more things. I have a lot more pictures.