Thursday, April 27, 2006

determined today that grandpa and grandma do indeed have toes

just like mama who's at work in the car, just like papa who's right here, just like sister and lala (la gata).

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

where gee-mee means monkey

what a contemporary pain... having your digital camera out of commission. it's one of those nearly unbearable distresses that pale in comparison to anything really bad but make americans pull their hair out.

up at 4:30 to work online and watch house of sand and fog, ben kingsley kicks ass. have a wet cough i'm going to treat today, slippery elm, mullein, cherry bark, horehound, hack it all up.

outside the sun ribbons the horizon with its pale knife of light. i sit beneath an old blanket my father gave me years ago, the edges not yet fraying, surrounded by piles of books i will pore over today in-between the crazy. Lucifer, our one remaining rooster, greets the dawn with his shrill coco-rico (were we in France) or Kick-er-riki (for you Germans). Lyli and Scarleht sleep upstairs in their temporary room (we've decided one last clockwise rotation of residents upstairs will be the right fix) and Steph in her room, the one with the blue wall, an east window and a south window, the room that will be theirs sometime soon, the room with innocent light.

today the girls and i will put the garden in, fold clothes, finish the mountain of dishes, & go for a short walk in the woods (papa can't carry both of 'em too far anymore when they're exhausted so we stick close to home). i find happiness these days in keeping busy and trying to lend as many moments a day to thought, or its utter absence, as possible.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

verbose little varmints, stupid stupid fighting parents, printing presses and woodstoves

gosh. when a wave comes to shore, sure enough your pretty sand castle gets washed straight away but all these little bits of new dreams rise to the surface to be molded into the next castle with your fresh hands.

both lyli and scarleht have been wandering around the house muttering "here ya go" while handing things to each other, me, stephanie, the cat, the wall, the oven, the woodstove,whatever. today Lyli said "there ya go", "left foot" and "i like pants" (although she did not enunciate very well). Scarleht said "no poop!", "hhh-ome", "Ka" (which means rock), "roh-ti papa" which translates roughly to "flower for papa" and the one that blew me away because I could almost hear each syllable when she said it: "When's mama comin' home?"

Add these to their already formidable arsenal of boogadies, moes (more), nos, uh-ohs, la-las...

shit, gotta add more wood to the fire, hold on

grammas, gran-papas, hah-los, hi-los, sooshta or shooshoo(not sure how to spell this one and the sound of it changes all the time anyway but it means sister or chicken)

i enjoy these times spent with lyli and scarleht, watching and listening to them formulate their worlds. even if i do waste too much of it on chores or books or a movie every now and then I try too to get as much play time in as well and spread it out over the whole day while they follow me around the house and yard and help with chores (read make small messes while i deal with big messes). Right now for instance they are each perched in their own papa-san chair, lyli's rolling around on the floor, scarleht's on its base. they are reading outloud to themselves and communicating telepathically with one another (I can tell by their little harmonized chirping).

Today I will eat some eggs before using the chainsaw for a half hour or so, then split some wood, go to the post office and hardware store, start digging a new spot for some veggies, clean out the room in the barn and begin setting up a small print shop, take out the garbage, clean the girl's room, put books online, care for my girls from 3 to 8 or so while Steph goes to work, maybe eat some lunch and take a quick nap in there considering I got up at 5 today and then hopefully relax with a beer and finish reading What We Talk About When We Talk About Love by Raymond Carver, one of the greatest short story writers to ever live and one of my persoanl heroes (although in my current emotional state I'm not sure if that's necessarily a good thing, sorry Ray).

Steph and my's turmoil continues, again boiling over. our tempers flare and mix and neither one of us likes the results. first we decide to have separate rooms, then that we will look at houses in olympia, then that maybe we shouldn't live together after all... then we say some really good things and I don't know what of it all to believe. I don't want to leave this place but my love does.

How does one ask love to stay? Or does one love love enough to wish her wings to fly away?

just got three more old printing presses yesterday, little ones. maybe the words i find inside will be able to console my lonely heart whilst we figure out what to do about any old thing at all.

Monday, April 17, 2006

Don't Leave Your Friends Behind: Anarcha-Feminism and Supporting Mothers and Children

Please check out my friend China's pamphlet [in .pdf] from her recent workshop:

Don't Leave Your Friends Behind: Anarcha-Feminism and Supporting Mothers and Children

China started one of the first mamazines back in the day, The Future Generation, go google her or keyword search this blog for past postings.

Sunday, April 9, 2006

too much to list this past week in Walla Walla where I go eternally searching for my lost youth.

lyli and scarleht now say:

"here ya go!"
"pillow, pellow, pI-llow" - for this one lyli's tongue nearly touches her nose
"gramma" "gran-papa" (although Gramma tends to mean either depending on context)

my mother has been signing up a storm with them as well as sent me packing with three American Sign Language videos to pore over in all my spare time (read 3a.m.).

my father plays with them in the mornings, reading books and laughing, the wrinkles around the corners of his eyes sketching out my future. he is so tired when he gets home at night from the store. I worry about both my parents.

My parents have been watching them together and alone for a bit here and there while I go work at my pop's bookstore and run errands and get out to try to breathe or write or search some soul or have a cold beer and look for faces I used to know around the foreign bars, alienated within my own eggshell. Willow, the old gray cat of my childhood is withering; she has now lost control of her bowels and stays outside most of the time. Her meow is quite loud and grating as she can no longer hear what it sounds like in order to fine tune a few things. Rascal, my old Australian shepherd is dead and her enormous offspring Brando is too clumsy and lick-crazy around the girls to be any fun for them. They just stare at him and then cry if he comes near. Oh well, maybe next time.

I do the dance, wine tasting, girls downtown, stares, stopping every other person to allow gawking at such magnificent beauty (the girls too I'm sure). Surely the goddess Diana came down and kissed the eyelids of these two 'cause I've never been that beautiful in my life and Stephanie is beautiful but in a different way. Anyway... the Walla Walla social dance I dip my toe into and shudder at. I enjoy ending sentences with prepositions. Ha! I got a C on one grammar test and Ds and Fs on all the others and I'm a writer.

But seriously, how broke back mountain is it to cliche yourself to death in a small town when you could be working to foster an egalitarian sustainable organic biodiesel biodiesel biodiesel community? I digress.

I guess.

I am enchanted by wheat. John and I drive through the fields, twins asleep in the rear, snoring. We continue a wide-ranging philosophical conversation that has swelled over a couple days and will continue for a few more. We touch on romantic love, sense of place, literary criticism, current events, old yarns, highschool sexcapades, those worthless carcasses of testosterone and booze we used to drag around the haybales milking the system for all we could and giving back insolence and sometimes art. Now we know our folly and call it blind vanity but move on selfishly anyway despite this knowledge. We eat a torta and a Mexican fish I think is called Tilapa(?) Time achieves this brilliant haze it always has for me with him, an incandescence blurs the edges of my vision and consciousness, thoughts becoming tangible, concretions merging into vague conceptions, doors opening, dream-petals unfolding. The wonder of a friendship without possibility of failure, the endless kind that authors sometimes try to capture in 7oo page novels that have to be translated into English for our monolingual dumbtongues. I revel in the bliss of intelligent banter. Too often it seems my tongue is tied to trivial, menial matters and details which do not deserve my attention. I believe that the little shit works itself out as long as you know how to pull the strings.

Stephanie misses the girls terribly. They talk about her 6 to 12 times a day. It is sad and amazing to experience such things.

Today we went to visit Phyllis and Bob Pulfer, John's grandparents. Phyllis used to be the head of the Democratic Party for the state of Washington, she's been on the Human Rights Commission, she's spearheaded hundreds of projects locally and nationally and is now in her late seventies or early eighties (?) and has been blind for many years. She is also the mother of twins, John's mother being one of them. She and Bob had four kids and then had twins (that's right, and you think one or two are hard). We talked about parenting and kids and trains and magnets and I tried to explain to Phyllis some of the ASL signs the girls know. I was trying to tell her how to sign take turns: you make an L with the index finger and thumb of your right hand and then flip it over from palm up to palm down, your thumb indicating two options and your index finger pointing straight forward. But Phyllis, it was obvious to me, couldn't remember what the letter L looked like! So I re-explained it as a kid imitating a toy gun with her hand and she locked on target just fine. Then she placed her hands over mine and felt while I signed and I guided her hands into the proper shapes. It was quite amazing. I can't stop thinking about Helen Keller and language acquisition and synapses and shit. Whew.

God, what else? Just sealed a deal to get three table-top printing presses. My friend Jade is our intern at the bookstore this quarter to get our old Chandler and Price press up and running. The site is just beginning but tune in to Ampersand Printing soon to get a glimpse of this clandestine undertaking / artistic endeavor / fledgling business. Should be fun times ahead.

Troubleshooting my father's new laptop, picked out a nice digital camera for him while we were here. I'm jealous, now he's got a nicer camera and a nicer computer than we do. We're gonna have to upgrade again.

Tomorrow afternoon we will rent a big ass car, hopefully not that fucking Yukon again. Horrible gas mileage and I end up driving 85 miles per hour 'cause it feels like 35. God people are morons. Perhaps we will dine in Yakima or at that little trout place on White Pass... time will tell. Definitely gonna hit the taco bus on the way out of town. Maybe get some onions. mmmmmm. onions. Thanks for tuning in. Sorry I didn't post anything for a bit. Leave more comments and I will!