badstar: (stone apollo)
So tonight, I ventured over to the 24-hour Rite Aid, a short walk from the apartment. Before I left, I checked the weather to get the temperature. Weather Channel website said it was foggy. I went out and saw no fog. I call shenanigans. Very quickly though, I realized that, despite not being foggy, it *felt* foggy- you know how it feels when you go outside on a foggy night? Yeah, like that, except no fog in sight.

Initially, I was thinking about fog and foggy nights, which led me to remember some foggy evenings back in Lancaster, and wondering what happened to a small book of photos I had taken- many of them from a rainy, foggy night (including one that led just about everyone who saw it to make some comment about there needing to be a Bat Signal shining into the sky) and that led to me thinking of one of the few things that I actually miss about Lancaster being the random little alleys which often contain little shops or interesting corners and how there's nothing like that here in Baltimore...and somehow that made me think of one of the places that I really liked there, which I just won't find anywhere else- St James cemetery, which is this little cemetery in the middle of Lancaster, on the walled in grounds of an old Episcopal church (one of the oldest Episcopal churches in the country...a number of historical figures such as George Ross are buried on the grounds...sadly, there are no good pictures online to post.)

I don't know how my thoughts progressed from one to the other, really but it went from St James cemetery to thinking about the grove, and one of the things that I really miss about the grove. I was thinking about how I used to often sleep over at the grove, either the night before or the night after a ritual, and how, much as I am not a morning person, one thing I really liked doing there was waking up early and lighting all the candles, getting things ready before people showed up.

At the time, I thought of it more as a clergy-related thing, that I was doing this for the people who would later be there- and likely it was partially that. But now that I think of this, I really think it was more a matter of doing it for the various and assorted gods and spirits that were there. This was the one case, aside from rituals, where despite not really having a connection to most of them, I actually actively felt them around me, and felt that I was really doing something.

So now I'm thinking more about how to bring that to us here...we've had our own little temple room here in the apartment, but we just haven't been treating it so fully as a temple as we could. I think it will be easier to do after moving, if we really actively work on setting up the new place with this in mind, I think this could make a significant difference.

In other news, while at Rite Aid, I was accosted by another customer. She was trying to find something- I have no idea what she was talking about, she just kept talking about something called "shine". This particular Rite Aid is severely understaffed- no matter what time of day you go in, you can count on waiting 15-20 minutes in line and if I knew what she was talking about, I would have just told her if I knew. But I didn't, and I tried to tell her that I didn't work there and she started freaking out and threatening to get me fired. I thought for a minute that she was going to physically attack me. Thankfully, a security guard was nearby and told her that she had to calm down or he would call the cops. It took a few minutes, and I had to explain to him what had happened. I escaped a bit weirded out, but otherwise unscathed.

In yet other news, I've now got a dreamwidth account. Just in the "still checking it out" stage, what I use it for is yet to be determined but fear not, I'm not going to make my LJ readership subscribe to yet another service that they don't want to add to read my stuff.
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Earlier today, on the way up top Hunt Valley for some grocery shopping, I started writing a bit, and just now finished (I think)a short poem. I was thinking about depersonalization and the idea that I know it's all real if I touch something and it feels like I expect it to feel.

Well, today I came to the conclusion that the only of the commonly thought of five senses that can really, fairly concretely be trusted with this are touch and taste, because the others can much more easily be tricked or shut off, and they don't require direct contact (okay, so smell actually involves inhaling minute particles of whatever is producing a scent, but let's not get too sciencey here now :-P

So yeah....your eyes can trick you into seeing things that aren't there. Or you can see people on a movie or on TV- they're not really there. And you can close your eyes and turn it off. you don't put things against your eyeball to see them- that would be inconvenient. Similarly, you can hear, or you can think you hear something. You can listen to a recording- but what you're hearing isn't actually there. And you can stick your fingers in your ears to block it all out. And you can smell things, or you can think you smell things- how often do you stop and sniff around because you think you smelled something, only to realize you didn't? And you can turn it off by pinching your nose.

But you can't turn off your skin, and you can't turn off your tongue. They're much harder to trick, so they're a much better gauge of things being real.

And I wrote this:

I am one mind existing
as though inside another
unconvinced of my own reality.
I live, vicarious, through myself;
only touch and taste
as my fragile bridge
the only arguments
I've never been able to
shut down.
I'm here, half a step out of phase,
can't you see I'm fading out of the frame?
If you try to touch me,
you might only catch a handful of air.
Obviously I fake it really well
or you'd have noticed long ago
that I'm translucent.
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On Tuesday evening, I was walking to the train to go to work. From where I was to the nearest train stop was about a twenty-minute walk. When I had last glanced out a window before leaving where I was, the sky was clear with jsut a few clouds. In the twenty minutes or so from that point until I got outside, the sky had suddenly become heavy with very dark, ominous clouds- large patches of a very green tint to many of them suggested strong tornado potential- though that didn't bother me too much, since it is a fairly rare thing for tornadoes to touch down within large cities. The clouds though were pretty impressive. I tried to take some pictures with my cell phone camera but they didn't come out very well. There was this one large swirl of clouds that curved across the sky like an immense, sweeping arm- that and another cloud formation that I can't really easily describe also looked like strong indicators of tornado potential.

But beyond that...well, I've never really gotten a sense of Zeus before, and I had this sudden "knowing" that he was behind all this- it didn't feel anything like what I feel in the presence of the gods that are more familar to me, like Apollo, Hermes or Dionysus- I can only really describe it as feeling as if there was a distant, over-arching sentience to the sky, and one of the thoughts I had was that the long, sweeping arm of clouds that I saw was one of Zeus's arms.

The last stretch of my walk to the train stop took me down a long, winding hill which was rather busy with traffic at the time, and rain was starting to fall and I didn't have an umbrella on me, and REALLY didn't want to be stuck out in the sort of rain that was on the way. So I did the best thing I could think of- I had a drink in my backpack side pocket, pulled that out, and poured a bit out, asking him to let me get to the train stop- or at the very least to the bridge before it (the walk to that train stop takes me under a raised section of Interstate 83 and over a stream it's pretty cool, so that's either six or eight lanes of highway there, can't remember exactly- provides considerable shelter. I was about a hundred feet from there when the rain started to get heavier and just made it as it really started pouring. Thankfully, l I only had to wait a few minutes before it let up and I could continue to the train stop, another fifty yards away or so. Thunder, lightning and the occasional splatter of rain continued and trains going in my direction were rather heavily delayed for reasons unknown to me, but only for a brief few minutes did I have to duck under an overhang again, and for a decent chunk of the time, I was able to talk to Gavin on the phone. Unfortunately, while I was sitting at the train stop, most of this had left my head on all but a very basic intellectual level and in the midst of training a new guy at work and being ridiculously tired for a few days, I forgot about all this until I was on my way back to work this gorgeous, sunny afternoon, and I wrote this:

Hail Zeus, Labrandeus, whose furious storms race across the sky!
Hail Zeus, Skotitos, whose swirling clouds gather and darken the sky!
Hail Zeus, Keraunios whose crashing thunder echoes through the sky!
Hail Zeus, Astrapaios whose flash of lightning tears the sky!
Hail Zeus, Ombrios whose falling rain pours down from the sky!
Hail Zeus, Euenemos whose fair winds come again to clear the sky!
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Yes, I'm happy, Bush is gone. Yes, I voted for Obama. Yes, I am a little hopeful that things will get better. Yes, I think it was a damned good call for Obama to put a hold on all pending regulations for federal agencies until his administration can review them.

But reading over some of the posts on my friends list, and overhearing a good many conversations today and since the election, I feel the need to say this...(If this does not apply to you, feel free to be all smug or something :-P )

Barrack Obama is a man, a human being. He is not a god. He is not our messiah or savior or miracle answer to that which ails us. Even if he's here for two terms, he will not be able to make everything perfect, or even okay. He's inherited a global-scale nightmare of astronomical proportions. It's going to take a lot of detangling until even a tiny dent can be made. It's probably going to take several presidents to recover from this.

Don't put the man on a pedestal. Don't inflate him into something he's not because when he doesn't fix every little thing and make it all perfect, you'll hate him.

Bush may be now called one of the nation's worst-ever presidents, but I wouldn't be at all surprised of Obama ended up being one of the nation's most harshly-judged presidents once he's had his run.
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Someone posted this question on a forum that I frequent. when I first saw it, I ignored it because well, unless you're working in a system with some measurable benchmarks (degrees in Traditional Wicca, for example) there's no way of reasonably answering this. Then after a while, the thought of terms of "advancement" and not "being advanced" came t mind, along with yet more thinking about the last year, and how so much has changed for me spiritually. It definitely didn't come cheap and easy. This was my answer:

Let me just state, first off, that I have no idea what "advanced" really is. I have found that my religious practice and views are not particularly similar to a vast majority of other pagans that I've encountered (referring now to my strictly personal religious practice, not my group affiliation with ADF) and I seem to hold some rather unusual views and experiences of my gods, so that narrows down more there, so there's not much to compare to, even if I were interested in comparing. As a result, in my little world, "advanced" is entirely self-referential, I am farther along now than I was a month ago or a year ago. It's advancement, not being advanced.

In the last year, I would say that I've advanced much. Shortly after the fall equinox last year, a lot of things started changing drastically for me. I was introduced much more closely- and dramatically- to a couple of gods. I gained a completely new view of Apollo, to whom I've been devoted for some time now, not a view that I'd never known before, but one with which I was previously only aware of on a strictly intellectual basis, I gained a very sudden, up close, personal and traumatic familiarity with that view, with that, my life changed rather drastically in a few months time.

A year later, my life is far better in many ways. I'm living in a much better place. I'm involved in a romantic relationship with elements that I never believed in before it happened to me. I'm so much happier overall. While I was never particularly unhealthy, I know that I am healthier than I was, physically and mentally.

All it cost me was a chunk of my self-identity, my "place" (Where I thought I was, what I thought I was doing, I was beginning ADF's Clergy Training Program after about eight years of being called to serve as clergy and then taking the steps to train as such, then realize I was doing the wrong thing), my sense of belonging to my grove, where I had been involved heavily for three years, a bout of depression and mourning, a large chunk of what had been my social life, and for a time, my happiness. I felt lost and aimless for months.

I have a difficult time relating to a lot of people in many ways. Not because OMG Im sooooo speshul, but because I think I'm coming from a very different place than a lot of people. I can't think of too many people who would be at all interested in living my life. Basically, my religion is the primary thing in my life. (That includes my relationship with my girlfriend One of the first things that we determined at the beginning of the relationship was that religion came before anything else fpr each of us, including each other. This probably sounds crazy to a lot of folks, possibly even harsh or cruel, but it works out for both of us, and is a condition that rarely needs to be invoked.) Sometime in the middle of last winter, I realized with a bit of a start one day that were I Christian with the sort of devotion I hold, I would very possibly be strongly considering becoming a nun. Knowing that no similar option is available to me, and growing more and more discontent with my job and some of the things that were happening there, that threw me into a period of time where everything was wrong, nothing was right and well, as I said, I was just lost.

This wasn't the first time I've had to deal with complete and drastic change like that brought on by religious/spiritual things. The cost was rather heavy, involved a lot of stress and upheaval. After a while, certain things fell into place, other things came up, they got all crazy and then they calmed down again. The last two months have been very low-stress and happy, but I'm not expecting that to last forever, I know the process is going to repeat and I'm going to have to deal with more of it on the way to wherever I'm going. what cost? For me, it was just about everything that's important to me, some of it on a temporary basis, some of it permanently.

Sarah Palin

Sep. 3rd, 2008 03:16 am
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I have never disliked a political figure in such a short time after first hearing a name.

I was going to write a nice, detailed, specific list of reasons why...but the more I read, the more my head hurts and for the sake of my poor little brain, I think I'm going to put it off for another time.

I'll leave you with this little tid bit for now (bolding mine):

Q: Are you offended by the phrase "Under God" in the Pledge of Allegiance?

A: Not on your life. If it was good enough for the founding fathers, its good enough for me and I'll fight in defense of our Pledge of Allegiance.
Source: Eagle Forum 2006 Gubernatorial Candidate Questionnaire Jul 31, 2006

Then there's this link, with a very high shake to stick ratio of links to sources for all kinds of fun stuff on the sort of things to which she is connected:

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It's funny how a year of constant change makes stuff that I would have thought of as utterly insane this time last year actually make some sense.

I think I'm finally adjusting to myself, I'm finding equilibrium in some things while doing more balancing out on a limb with others. Some of the interesting part of this weekend involved giving voice to some thoughts about myself that less than a year ago, I never told anyone and only laughed at myself about them because they were so absurd. But now, not so absurd. Unlikely couple as we may be, can I just say, the girlfriend, she groks Teh Crayzee.

I'm still working on this idea. It involves me, how I see myself, relate to the world, and relate to the gods. If I can express my thoughts coherently, I might post it.
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Is it sad that I'm horribly amused at having just talked to someone named Rick Deckard? He even sounded kinda like Harrison Ford.
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Last night, grove solstice ritual. I wouldn't call it my ideal ritual (No one's fault, really. while some have come much closer in the past, I would highly doubt that any collaboration would be. But it's a grove ritual, not mine.) but it wasn't bad. Maybe it was because I've been largely uninvolved since the fall, Or maybe it's me overall, or maybe somewhere in between, but it wasn't quite the same. I wasn't quite as in it as I've been in the past. There were some moments of annoyance (Kids in ritual not usually a big deal to me, but if they're not going to stay reasonably under control and make a whole lot of noise about it, it's probably best not to have them right in the middle of things. Kids do that, they make noise.)

All told, it went mostly well, but I just wasn't able to be in it spiritually. The only points where I was really wholly into it were when I made a quick offering to Apollo, and a little later on, a silent request. And that really wasn't so much being in the ritual as it was being in those moments (ha, how ironic, the ritual was about living in the moment....)

I did write a couple of off the cuff, short hymns for the ritual patrons, as well as a brief poem. Not my best work, but I wanted to have a few things prepared because it drives me crazy when a majority of the offerings in a ritual completely ignore the deities to be honored. I'll probably clean them up, maybe expand them a bit and post them. either way, they'll go into the book of hymns that I've slowly been writing to the gods, which I started "officially" as an offering to the Greek gods at the fall equinox. I read those, and sang a song that I had suddenly remembered from back in girl scouts that I had forgotten until just then.

At the moment, I'm feeling slightly blah and ambiguous about a lot of things, a whole lot of "I don't know"...but there is a lot that I've found of late that interests me greatly, so hopefully that won't last long....
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The life I had a year ago is not the life I have now.

Hell, the life I had at the beginning of the year is not the life I have now.

The mind, it doth boggle.
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You know what sucks about having a good weekend?


I'm back to work. Back to boredom. Back to...everything.

But not entirely. I realized at some point earlier, I'm very distracted.

It's not just that I'm sad about Mama Edna. - I am, but honestly, that's not really distracting me. I'm not feeling particularly depressed at the moment, or like I want to cry my eyes out because of how much work is sucking. I'm not feeling at the moment like everything is desperately wrong in my life and that I need to run away. I'm not feeling like I need to get out of my own head to escape my thoughts. Hell, I don't need to question that it's my own head I'm in. Dammit, right now, there's no question that it IS my head I'm in.

No, there are a whole bunch of nebulous things that I can't really sum up neatly...and then there are a couple of larger things that I could...but won't. (Please, don't ask. There are some things that I'm simply not willing to put out there right now.) Suffice it to say that for once, there are actually things not completely tied to religion going on in my brain. There's one of these things that, for some time now has been in the back of my mind...and then something brings it to the front. And after a short time, I push it back, and then something else happens that brings it back again, lather, rinse repeat. And then some other things too.

This time, right now...I actually want time alone with my thoughts, I don't want to be distracted from them for once. And I don't really have time for another several days. Not without having to worry about processing a bajillion emails anyway. But I don't get that til Friday. Unless I want to cut into my sleep time to sit and ponder my situation, and that brings me up to Wednesday, since my sleep time gets cut short by a couple of hours tomorrow, er, today, for an appointment.

Well...I guess that's what this Friday will be. Time alone with my thoughts.
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I think the weather definitely has an effect on my mood...I'm feeling a lot better in the last day and a half than I have in a while. I wasn't miserable to be sitting at work the other night with no one to talk to at four in the morning to distract me from my thoughts.

Don't worry though, life is still in a state of flux, I still don't know what's what in a lot of ways, and while I thought when it happened that dropping clergy training was The Big Bomb, but now, I'm pretty sure that it wasn't it, but was leading up to something else. (No, I don't know what. It hasn't happened yet.)

In other, somewhat related news, (Some folks already know this. I've been talking selectively about it. And by "selectively", I mean everyone but you. You just aren't good enough to know until I make the public post, bitch. Neener Neener Neener.) I'm looking at moving to the west coast, probably in about a year or just over that. (Oh yeah, Gavin's going too :-P ) I'm hoping to go out there sometime this summer for a few days, we're interested in Eugene, Oregon and I'm also hoping to harass my brother in Portland. This all came out of one of our long, ponderous conversations about how nothing seems to be right anymore. She asked if I ever thought of just leaving...which I had a million times. A week later, we were actually and seriously discussing the possibility. I took some time, gave it some serious consideration to be sure it wasn't just a "really cool idea, woohoo!" and the more i thought about it, the more concrete it became, and I realized that it fit a pattern with my life and if that pattern hold true, I'll be there in about a year.

Anyway...time to be getting going. Need to go to the post office and various other places.
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There is such a blurry line between some forms of jazz, and bad 70's background music.

Or some forms of jazz and very slightly higher class than average porn music.

Jus' sayin'.
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I posted this at [ profile] cultofapollo but I wanted to put it here for easy reference on my own journal. Eventually it will probably become part of an essay that I'm attempting to write.

I know Apollo as a highly complex god with more layers than I will ever imagine. He is a god with solar connections, but he is not god of the sun. He is not civilized- that is a human concept, he is a god, and you will never forget that he is a god. He is beautiful and perfect in ways that can only be glimpsed in brilliant fractions of a second at a time, so vast, like the moment when it suddenly dawns on you for an instant just how big infinity really is.

He is a god of many lights. He is a warm golden glow of safety and joy. He is the brightest light, which casts the darkest shadow. He is the light that shines into the dark: He is the light of truth and truth is often painful. The absolute light that leaves no crevice in shadow. In the light that drowns out all shadow, there is only truth. It's the cold, cruel, surgical light which allows no room for denial. It hurts. Often unbearably. But after it hurts, it heals.
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It is now Thursday.

Meaning that in about 24 hours, I will be home and it will be the weekend again.

I am now registered for the WABA-PLC.

Annnnnd I got a big envelope-o-stuff today from the LASIK plus people. Should probably look at that.

And fuck if I didn't forget to call and cancel my Friday appointment with Katzen. Oh well, will do that later in the morning.

Oh and my mom called me today, apparently AC Moore was having a huge yarn sale last week and she bought me like a dozen and a half balls of yarn that she hasn't sent me yet.

I'm seriously thinking of giving up on Walden. for the moment anyway. Me and Henry just ain't getting nowhere. It's a losing battle. Perhaps if I were to just give it a break and move onto something else. Like In Search Of The Indo-Europeans (hahahahahahahahahahaha...I know.)

I should probably try to remember what I did with my copy of the Mabinogion too.

I feel like a nap.

What if...?

Feb. 5th, 2008 12:41 am
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Dammit, I'm really not in a good mood right now. I feel like I need to sleep. Or cry. Or...I dunno. Scream? Kick something? Pick a fight?

I've no idea where this came from, but today when I woke up (earlier in the day, not in the afternoon after that dream) I laid there on my bed, staring up at the ceiling and I found myself very seriously contemplating dropping the clergy training program.

I don't know why. but for a moment, the thought was so clear in my mind, and I remember thinking how it would be fine, the gods would be okay with it, and how whatever else is to come in the future would fulfill this damned inexplicable need that I had to pursue clergy training.

After about a minute, I shook myself out of it. It wouldn't be okay. Whatever happens, one thing is not a substitute for another and I endured too much headache and stupidity and time shaking my fist in the general direction of California as Raven asked me for more essay rewrites without being specific as to what the problem was.

I didn't start this to give up before I even got into it. What the hell, where did the idea that I should drop it even come from? I AM doing this the right way. Aren't I? Aren't I?

Dammit, I want to be home right now. If I were home, I could go to my room and turn off the lights and put a pillow over my head and go to sleep and hope that this passed in the night.

Dammit, this hurts. Badly. It'll pass. But I'm scared that it won't. What if I am doing this the wrong way? How much time will I have wasted? Am I wasting time?

My stomach feels like it's tied up in knots. I don't want to be here. On top of everything else, this office is sweltering. If I turn down the heat at all, it will freeze. I'm in a bad mood, and I don't feel like having earphones jammed into my ears, but if I take them out, I'm afraid that Tiffany will start yapping again (Brian left at midnight, so there's only me if she starts talking) and then I might actually make good on that desire to pick a fight. Which is a bad idea.

I'm going to find myself a cold caffeinated beverage.
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There is something downright creepy about food whose name contains the word "delight".
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When I was in PA, I made the mistake of getting into a discussion on religion with my mother. She's been saying for a while now that she is so proud of what I'm doing, even though she doesn't agree with it. But I could never get at what exactly she doesn't agree with, it just always seemed like she disagreed with whatever her idea of what I'm doing and what I believe is, as opposed to what I really do and believe.

I've told her on several occasions that I've no intention of trying to change her mind, however if she's going to disagree with me, I really would prefer that she disagree with what actually is, as opposed to whatever mal-conceived ideas she's got.

So we started getting into it and the first thing she said was that she doesn't agree with the idea of many gods because there is only one god. Okay, I can respect that. Her reason is rather insulting- that polytheism came about because ancient folks were too ignorant to grok the concept of a single god holding reign over everything.

But, ya know whatever.

I got a little irritated when she want on to say that every single major religion in the world has had some prophet who came along to tell people that there's only one god. Ummm....Buddhism? Hinduism?

*sigh* It would be so easy if she would just tell me I'm gonna die and burn in hell. But no...she doesn't believe that. She believes in reincarnation. She thinks that I'm attracted to the Greek gods because I had a past life in ancient Greece. But she thinks I have it all wrong, and that I have to keep "looking for the truth".

She says that she once asked to see the truth and is sorry that she did. Then she starts going on about how there's a war going on all around us at all time between angels and demons for people's souls, and how I needed to understand this, and to keep seeking the truth. (And by "truth", she meant what she was telling me.) she was also going on about how she knows it must be true because she could never make it up in her own mind. As if I would so easily make up my own expereinces...especially some of the more recent ones.

She also reminded me that she knows when she's telling someone the right thing because she gets chills (she used to say this a lot) I have a hard time taking that one seriously in the context of sitting outside in 30-degree weather for the last fifteen minutes with an open coat over a light shirt. I told her that I had chills too and could just as easily use that to say I was telling her the right thign too. Of course the response was "You know that's not the kind of chill I'm talking about."

It didn't really last very long, my stepfather came out to smoke (we were sitting outside) and I was NOT going to continue that discussion with Mike present would have gotten REALLY ugly.

So...on one hand, I have to say that I find her angel/demon war for souls to be utterly ridiculous. At the same time, I know that I've had my share of plenty ridiculous-sounding experiences.

I don't believe in one single truth...and if there is one, I think that the odds of ANYONE actually having it right are practically nonexistent. I've said it a hundred times before...there's only one way to know that for sure, and I've no plans to do that anytime soon. She seemed to find it rather troublesome that I could be so convinced of my beliefs and still acknowledge that I could be wrong. I dunno what to tell you, I'm human, I'm imperfect. It's not logical, but...well, it makes sense to me.

I made no attempt to explain my own experience. I often have enough trouble reasonably speaking of things to people who do understand where I'm coming from. I wasn't going to waste my breath fumbling to explain the light of Apollo to someone who takes stumbling over words and the inability to immediately deliver just the right words as a sign of doubt or lack of knowledge and fumbling for words or not, I wouldn't even mention what I've experienced with Dionysus. I could see that going over well..."Oh yah, Mom so I had this dream that this god came along and got someone to tie me to a tree with grapevines, and then the god that I'm particularly devoted to shot me with an arrow. Oh and after that, the skin all over my arms and legs got all slived up...but it's ok because they said it was and that I would be better in the end."

Yaaaah. Like so many lead balloons. I wasn't even going to try. Oh well, I know where I've been. Not always entirely sure where I'm going, it seems to shift and morph from time to time. But I've no doubt I'm going the right way, this is the truth as I know it.
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Out in the cold, here in the night
under the garish orange street lights,
strip me bare.
With the world watching,
take my coat.
It keeps me warm. I can be cold.
Take it, peel back my safety.
The clothing that clings to my skin, take that too.
No more shirt, no more jeans.
You see the poetry etched across my flesh,
do you hear the pain that screams,
invisible in plain sight?
My skin, you can have it too:
Epidermis, take it...
dermis, take it...
hypodermis, take it.
Under my skin, all that you never knew
all that you might not believe
all that you never suspected
because I give you no reason.
Sometimes I almost fool myself.
Muscles, tendons, ligaments
rip me, bleed me, shred me.
What was inside
is now on display to the world
Bare bone. Skeleton.
Can you go further?
Marrow. Core. Stop.
Did you want to see this?
Did you want to look so close?
You're not getting any closer
because you can't comprehend
complete breakdown of the sum total.
Under my clothes
Under my skin
Under the muscles and veins and bone
at the simple, cellular level
or farther down, atomic-
That's where it gets complicated.

I'm feeling...revealing tonight. Like I need to confess. Not like "Oh, here's another little bit I never talk about." But...everything. Every little thing I've ever said, done, thought, wanted, hated, liked, loved, rejected, believed, disbelieved, tasted, touched, felt, seen, heard, For some reason I feel like I need to tell the world. It's almost a compulsion. But I am not going to do that...1. It would take far too long and 2. Bad idea. Really bad idea. All I can say is that the world would not handle the utter, brutal minutiae of the complete, total no-holds-barred honesty of Renee very well. (To be fair, it would likely not take such honesty from anyone very well.) and as it is, I really have no desire to put myself out there on such an extreme level.

I take comfort in a certain degree of vulnerability. Maybe that's why I write some of the things I do, letting a little bit out here and there for the world to know. I guess it's what allows me to think of myself as being an open, honest person. Not that I'm not. If you ask me an honest question, unless I have a good reason not to, I'll probably answer it. (Note, that is not to be taken as an invitation for an ask Renee anything you want Livejournal free-for-all.)

I think it serves a couple of purposes...there's a certain level of validation in my own mind, even beyond simple truth, that I can say "I have nothing to hide".

Also, it's sort of a release valve. I learned the hard way a long time ago that it's a bad idea to hold things in for too long. If I hold things in for too long, I become emotionally exhausted. Which then manifests in physical exhaustion. As in, I can sleep for 24 hours, and feel like I've never slept a minute in my life.

A few weeks ago, I had written about the closeness of Apollo, and how it was not corresponding to the Delphic season for me, how it was all-encompassing, permeating, enveloping and the only slightly less intense closeness of Dionysus. I speculated on the possibility of feeling a more seasonally-corresponding shift after the Lampteria ritual...and I haven't really thought much of it again til the last few days, but after Lampteria, the stronghold released into a loose, non-smothering grasp. Apollo close and constantly present in a way that wasn't completely tangible in an inside-my-skin way, Dionysus hovering near almost always, but not trying to constantly remind me that he's there.

Tonight on my way home from work, I was thinking. Having hypothetical conversations with actual people in my head (er, not real people in my head, but hypothetical conversations in my head with people that I know in real life. Yeah.) Conversations that I should have had, would like to have if the opportunity ever arises, some that I should never have no matter how much I might want get the idea. And suddenly, it all came flooding back tenfold. The pervasive feeling of presence in the spaces between every cell and atom of my skin, of vines twining almost painfully around my wrists, a certain languor, walking a little slower. An emotional rush, I almost cried a dozen times walking down my street from North ave. A disconnect from the outside world, and a bit from myself. Poetry rushing through my brain- I captured what I could above, but lost so much. I was convinced that I was dreaming. I stepped in front of the steps up to my house, certain that I would lose it all if I climbed them. I stood there looking up at the house, the right street, the right number...but I wasn't really sure it was mine. I convinced myself that I would not lose it all and walked up the steps. I wanted to stop on the porch and take off my coat and sit on the chair and write everything down, but it was too cold. I cane inside before I started writing and Unfortunately, I lost 99% of what was there.

It's okay, I still have that one percent. So I know it was real.

The solstice is in less than 24 hours. This should be an interesting winter.

Now, I think I need to sleep.
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I always think of myself as a very open, honest person. But the more I think about it lately, the more I realize that there is a lot that I hide. Or well, maybe not hide- at least, not intentionally, but there's a lot I don't talk about. Much. Mostly don't really have a reason to. On rare occasions to one or two specific people. And I think in the past I may have made a passing LJ post about that really merited no certain memory that I can think of and I'm not going back through several years of posts to try and look up. Whatever, no matter.


Keeping in mind that I'm a fairly social critter...I've been called a "people person"- a phrase which I really dislike, but I agree with to an extent. I'm a people person within my own limits. which fluctuate...I feel like I don't belong in far more places than I do belong, and even when I do, there are times when I don't.

Tonight on the way to work, I suddenly remembered a long-forgotten conversation with [ profile] dcnblus discussing how for a long time, I felt that there were some things that were okay for other people- depending on other people, wanting to be in a romantic relationship- that were not okay for me. All linked to a fear of becoming dependent on others. This was quite a while ago and I've largely gotten over, or more accurately I think, gotten past that, though there are always, probably always will be, remnants of that lurking around that will show up from time to time. the time, discussing reasons for this, one of the thoughts that came up was the fact that I felt I shouldn't need these things. It's okay for other people, but somewhere along the line I picked up the idea that it is (or at least should be) beyond me, and that I was somehow something beyond human. Not better than or above or below, or inhuman but beyond, somewhat outside of or removed from humanity just enough that I could feel it, but not completely of it. At the time, he had suggested "metahuman". I've not thought of a better word. To analogize, if humanity was a big house party and everyone was in the middle of the room dancing and drinking and talking, I'm off in the corner flipping through CD's by the stereo and looking out over the scene, observing. (This is not a literal description of me at a party, for the record. Anyone who's ever been to a party with me knows that.) I'm there, I can interact but there's an outside quality to me on the inside that isn't generally seen because I don't really express it and in the moments where it is showing, it's manifesting in some other way that to anyone else, is wholly incidental and isolated. I'm a mostly social person, but there's this invisible barrier that as far as I know is imperceptible to anyone else, at times imperceptible to me.

Anyway, I've never lost this feeling, though I haven't thought much of it in a long time- not in these terms anyway though definitely in many other ways. And as soon as I started thinking about this, I also realized that I had slipped into being extremely unsure if I was in my own mind or if I was in someone else's, looking through their eyes...and then I remembered feeling like this on a near-constant basis for quite a while around the time of that conversation, and that it was around this time or shortly before that the constant feeling that something was about to happen- that I would find something or see something, or have some massive personal revelation- started.

*shrug* I dunno.


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July 2013



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