Seed bombing

05/31/2011

this morning i dreamt that i was skeining planters from every conceivable nook and cranny, spit seeds into pockets of soil so that later they might become.

it’s not so different in life, just now. seed bombing.

i roll up a whole passel of seeds into clay and toss them out so that they sprout and bear fruit where they will. or not. or their harvest be plucked by other hands, known or unknown to mine.

you’d think i meant this literally (and maybe soon, that too), but what i mean is planting connections from hand to hand, burgeoning friendships that grow in depth and breadth under anarchic ministrations as i socialize from hell to breakfast, both as far and as close as my wheels will carry me, ever the rambling communitarian.

Advertisements

The door is A Jar

05/27/2011

And my shoulder is a soap dish for trauma.

One jarring thrust and the it comes loose, before I can yell HEY! at the sudden mosh pit that has erupted in a small basement (can two people be a pit? they can if they’re slam-dancing!). I’ve got tears in my throat and I’m rushing for the door.

Hurry halting to the street and try to find some place where I can be invisible. Even in the nearest park there are windows and cars close enough to see, suddenly the city isn’t the safest place to be at all, at all. I curl myself into a ball and just murmur jesus fucking christ, as many times as I need to, sob twice and swallow, untangle my knees from my chest. Hyper-vigilance, mercy. I breathe as slowly as I can remember to and try to rest my pulse. This is not the first time, nor will it be the last. Why do I even leave the house? Go to shows? At least I wasn’t drinking this time, so my inflated response isn’t moreso.

On my return the first act is packing out and my friend’s band is packing in. I don’t know how but they’ve already found the time to procure me a ride home after their set should I so desire it. At first I refuse, but then the adrenaline wears off and I can feel the searing of inflamed scar tissue rusting up my shoulder, the desire to retreat from strangers straddling my chest. Yes, a ride to somewhere safe. Good.

Somewhere I have posted a list of coping strategies for putting myself back together after a hard trigger. At the top and most surefire is dancing, tho I often forget its magic spell mending body, mind and soul. Safety in the physical enumeration of self, beat passing from limb to limb. Their set brings forth the ecstatic for me. I thrust my head back, stomp in place, hips loosen to sway, body stiffens for tense moments and then releases again. It feels lucky to be able to find recovery so quickly and I’m tempted to push it by staying out my ride, but I think that I know better this time.

At home the garden grows and I bubble joy, for each day I survive and thrive, too.

Hello, reader. This post contains potentially triggering subject matter. All names have been changed.

Minutes before the last time he laid a hand on me, I was sitting around the campfire at a party. Yves told a ghost story from her days as a Girl Scout, then we started to go around the circle, talking about our worst fears.

I don’t remember any one else’s fear but mine: “I’m afraid of being raped again.” and I told the story of almost getting stuck in Spanaway on a bike trip (mechanical troubles) where I was ready to take three buses to Oly just because I felt so. fucking. unsafe., much to the puzzlement of my heterosexual traveling companion, The Manarchist. The one who would later assault me. The one who only a few weeks after that trip came within less than an inch of raping me, after berating me for hours until I was too shut down and exhausted to even utter the word “no,” or make the motion of pushing his giantesse off of me.

“Touch me again and I’ll fucking kill you.” Some times I hear or read a phrase somewhere and it sticks to my brain, keeps surfacing until I find the right place for it. Days like this I want to spraypaint it on his house after sugaring his gas tank.

Funny thing is how little I really want to kill any one. I’m just tired of intrusion, that’s all. Tired of dreaming about him, that red and white striped shirt, about the way that thick hands that once so joyfully fucked me could come from a place of violence. swing, swing, miss, you’re out. Yell. I yelled: How dare you?! How dare you hit me! How dare you?! and he backed away. Get out of my house. Get. out. of my. house. It took two grown men who make their living wrangling drunks to get him out of my house, but it was my rage that caught him off guard, mid-swing.

Later I found the bruise on my wrist where I fell after he tried to kick my feet out from under me. Reese calls falling in love having one’s feet kicked out from under them, but this was never love, or at least not romantic love. Sexual solidarity, political comradeship, fucking, but not love, not ever that kind of love.

Nobody told me this, but I will tell you. There is deep violation in assault, yes, but for me the greatest violation is that I let this person close to me. I saw them cross other boundaries once, twice, more–but I thought myself inviolable and so I set myself in harm’s way.

Because I am forgiving. Because I am kind and loving, even with people I hardly know. Because I want to believe the best of people, especially people who claim to be my political allies in the fight, the good fight.

But from this day forward I will call the red flags as I see them. Accountability is a tool, an essential part of working to overcome oppression–and those who resist accountability are not doing their work, they are simply furthering the violence that hierarchies enact every day.

Oh, but if you touch me again without my permission? I won’t just kill you, I will fucking crucify you on the principles you so proudly boast of.

Awkward Both

05/24/2011

In the dream we are trapped underneath the coffee table. A party swirls around us: clinking glass, high laughter and distant voices. One of us starts awake and the motion forces us to consciousness.

“Hey.”

“Oh, hey.”

Neither of us is sure how we got here, yet we both want to remain casual. We’re pressed chest to chest in the dark breathing heavily, trying to touch as little as possible. You know that yoga pose where you lie on your stomach and arch your limbs upward from your core? It’s like that. I can already feel the exhausted burn, ATP depleting from the muscles, and I know soon I’ll begin to shake and sweat.

I feel as awkward as a gay high school wrestler, so close to the salty skin I crave, but context deeming anything of the sort unacceptable, no matter how involuntary.

I’ve wanted to touch you. And we are touching, yes, but the physical and emotional constraints are nothing like I expected. I had imagined there would be some sort of spark, a moistening of the lips that would tell me the way to lean in for the kiss. Instead I am nauseous. My palms sweat but my mouth is dry and my lips are like parchment peels rustling against eachother.

“No, no. This is all wrong,” I want to explain. It was supposed to be different. I was gonna have my shoulders pulled back and my eyes bright. I was gonna be sure–we both were. We were both gonna be so sure.

Of course we’re not, tho. Maybe we’re missing key details. I stutter, “S-so, where were you born?”

I can feel you rolling your eyes as your lids snap shut against the gleaming black pupils. But still, you drawl nasally, “Long Island,” East Coast and matter-of-fact.

“Oh,” I say. “Well, that uh, explains…”

“The accent?” you finish. I can’t tell if you’re grimacing or smiling. We’re both struggling not to go limp. Straining not to touch despite the indisputable, given the facts of our entombment. We are indeed, touching, and may well have no choice but to do so until we engineer some sort of escape.

You surprise me as I’m trying to figure on how we got here, how we’re gonna get out. “It’s okay, I think. If you want to…” you shift your weight from side to side. “Relax. I mean, I don’t think we have much choice.”

I nod slightly, knocking the back of my skull against the wood of the table in agreement. “Yes, yes I suppose that’s so. Is it okay–would it be alright if I laid my head here, in the hollow above your left shoulder?”

“Yeh, that works. Better we’re not breathing the same air back and forth, yeh?”

I exhale as I ease myself into you, urging my body to relax despite the immense awkwardness, and feel my breath as it reflects off of your neck, blows a stray curl into my face. All the hairs on the back of my neck stand up again and my stomach tightens menacingly. Like someone has drawn up a string, my spine tightens into the shoulders and they contract. Suddenly my crotch is warm. Burning, even. I roll my gaze into your collar bone. Libido, you have some poor timing.

Cheeks flushed, I whisper into the ear I am so close to, “You sure this is okay?” and you shrug silently, snake a hand to my hip and press comfortingly.

Something in me releases. We drift in and out of sleep, alternately drowsing and jarring awake. One time I wake up and I swear, you’ve worked your hand up beneath my shirt. You’re stroking the skin of my back softly and pressing the pads of your fingers into the flesh one at a time like you’re typing a letter. But there are no words for this.

Next time I wake, you pull your hand away quickly. “Sorry. Sorry. I–”

“It’s okay,” I reassure you, not yet sure if I mean it. There’s no room in this space for that kind of discomfort, tho, so I put the sensation aside.

It’s okay, I tell myself.

“It’s okay,” I tell you, and wake up.

RehearsalsDepartures does not have all the answers. RehearsalsDepartures is probably not what you were looking for. RehearsalsDepartures is an angry feminist.  RehearsalsDepartures finds joy in assertion. RehearsalsDepartures believes that the personal is political. RehearsalsDepartures is just one voice in a crowd of many. RehearsalsDepartures believes a hard rain is, indeed, a-gonna fall.