It’s not you, it’s me

I have deleted my facebook page! What a relief. I’ve been wanting to do it for a long time, but hung on because of this idea I had about Staying Connected. Then I realized real connection was being stifled there, like hunger is dulled, but not truly satisfied by eating candy.

So. Here I am, blogging without announcement. Can you still hear me?

I’ve been writing stuff that I haven’t posted because it all feels too unsure, too experimental. For now I would like to share this poem I wrote on my birthday a few weeks ago.


On my 38th birthday I turned on myself
like a desert bird, cawing and carving, smelling signs of decay.
I turned in on myself, inward, down
sifting the ghosts and the pronouns into piles labeled “keep,” and “throw.”
Without warning I broke into tears,
I burst into song. It’s not you, it’s me. It’s not you, it’s me.
And I poked at a cat lying in drain water,
making sure it was dead (there were cats without names, stolen
from under my bed when I dared love them).
It’s not me, it’s you. It’s not me.

On my 38th birthday I left my house without makeup,
tired, unwashed, too unbound for public consumption.
I left myself without plans and floated under a sun-risen frost for a free drink at Starbucks.
I canceled myself into an anonymous coffee shop.
It’s not me, it’s me. It’s never not you.
The cards in the mail are now just notifications,
electronic smiley faces I can like and click, Leveling Up all alone.
We’re not present, if the present is a gift, but that gift is a meme.
It’s not you, it’s you. You’re not me, I’m two.

The one flesh became two and I stump along just fine at 38.
I eavesdropped on a conversation between strangers,
discussing some sketchy drifter they know. And I wonder if he’s single.
If he’s 38, too and if he feels himself drifting on the breeze or the sewer,
do we sense our own labels?
On my 38th birthday I overheard myself thinking and realized
I am also a stranger. Much less kind than those coffee shop gossips.
I’ve been keeping myself strange, and I
strangled the ties between us. I put distance around myself,
a moat of miles, judging your lack of dedication to come looking
for me in the desert.
It’s not you, it’s me. I know now it’s me.


P.S. The photos look way better when you click on them to enlarge.

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