Thursday, April 29, 2010

Thoughts in real time

On the train to work this morning, as I listened to the music I have posted at the sidebar, I thought to myself, I am home. Then I thought about detours, and that I've taken quite a few in the past months--both musically and personally. Then I thought there's no such thing as a detour, because there's no such thing as a main route, not really.

We never stray from home or from who we are, because the map has only one road. It's the one that takes us over pavement and rock, through parts unknown, places to revisit and things to see for the first time. And whether we stop to hang our hat, or land only to take off again, we're always home in some way. We always walk through the rooms and adjust the pictures--we change things, move them to different places--always trying to make it sweeter, make it better, make it feel more like home.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

A few of my favorite things

A fine leather bag, a good pair of tweezers, unexpected blue skies, and the Red-tailed Hawks flying over New York.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Thoughts in real time

We all deserve, but if we don't demand... we're just deserving.

I demand much more than I did twenty years ago, much more than I did five years ago, even more than five days ago. I still take backward steps, I still take less, but my vision walks forward on an unobstructed path, always in the direction of more.

And now when I look in the mirror, I want her to have everything I never did, and to be loved the way she deserves--the way we all deserve, but so rarely demand.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Thoughts in real time

Clean closets, dirty sink, cable guy comes Saturday. It shocks me how close two people can be, and how quickly they can feel so distant. That lady with Lilacs on the train platform was nice.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Café days

I sat at the cafe tonight, the doors open wide. The sun before setting shines brightest on the corner, as if it's walking down the hill toward the river, and stops only for a rest. Music played, everyone inside was smiling, and when I felt the breeze hit my back, it all reminded me of a beach bar; sitting with the locals, talking about nothing but sharing everything.

At the cafe, I felt the gift of my freedom. To walk outside when I choose, sit where I want, drink what I like, and not have to explain or justify any of it to anyone. When you have such simple freedom, it's easy to see what's around. It's easy to value your neighbors, a cold beer, and the beauty of a New York City street corner just before sundown.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Evolving 101

My father once told me to believe in the tides and the seasons, and yesterday when my mother asked why I no longer write on the blog as often as I did, all I could think of were the tides and the seasons.

Beginning almost 4 years ago, The Half Note has been a friend by my side--a witness to my wake up calls. It's been like a funnel through which my lies and denial, and ultimately truth and longing, poured down a narrow stem, filling the space that I now recognize as me.

I remember my honeymoon twenty years ago--a Caribbean dream, the island of Anguilla. With my husband, I walked on smooth coral sand and swam in the kind of sea where mermaids must live. Across winding roads under island skies, I drove a jeep with no doors, with eight black-skinned schoolchildren on board, weighed down by bags and books, asking with joyful smiles to please drop them home. Anguilla was the place to celebrate life, to be in love, and feel one's freedom--so it was no wonder that my inexplicable sadness the entire stay came as a surprise. But no surprise.

People spend their whole lives climbing ladders--toward success, in battle, or in search of something else. I don't have to tell anyone what my theme has been, because I've never kept it a secret or made apologies. I've been accused of having an adolescent view of romance, an unrealistic expectation of men, and a fairytale vision of life. But I actually think I have a realer vision than many. It's not the criticism or accusations that have helped me evolve--it's my commitment to having another look around, to not accepting that I'm done or finished, left to spend the rest of my life buried by the weight of my limiting beliefs. I've made decisions both consciously and unconsciously to do this thing a second time, a third time, as many times as it takes so I can get it righter than I got it before.

Now I see with new eyes, young eyes, girl eyes. I'm 46 and I'm 16, and it really doesn't matter if I'm worshiped or walked away from, romanced or rejected--because even the things that hurt most are a small price to pay in comparison to what I have now--the things that can't be taken.

Maybe without warning, like the way it used to be, The Half Note will have 6 posts all in one day, and maybe I'll return to Anguilla. Maybe I'll walk on the soft coral sand, swim in the sea with mermaids, and give rides home to those beautiful children. And in the jeep with no doors, whether I'm with a sweetheart or I'm driving alone, I will celebrate life, and be in love, and feel my freedom, because I no longer have a choice.

It's sunny out with rain tomorrow. This is it, the changing tide, the new season--this is who I recognize as me.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Thought in real time

Maybe the wrong time... is the right time.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Sitting at the sidebar

Today, this northern girl feels completely Southbound.


Click the music player to hear.

Going home


My feet in boots, blue jeans on--I wear silver rings. For a moment, I feel like all of who I am, but it's too easy to lose that sense when you live among people who, like you, are not being all of who they are.

In boots, blue jeans and silver rings, I am suspended in a place where nothing need be done. I have long hair and green eyes, but I don't open my mouth, or build a house, or make something brilliant--I just hold my breath and I wait.

This work we do to be human, to carve out space, make art, find fulfillment and create meaning--it should be like a song. Effortless, melodic, rhythmic, and each day ending with a perfect cadence.

My boots, blue jeans and silver rings are expressions of the all of who I am, but when do I take the pieces of me, the notes and the chords, and write a song?

Maybe now is the time to stop waiting--for it, for that, for more. Maybe now is the time to make something brilliant, build a house just for me, then open my mouth and start singing.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Defining love

We all have our definitions of love--what it is and what it means. I used to think that love meant loving someone regardless of how they loved or didn't love you back. Later I decided that, with the exception of the love for a child, that wasn't true. At least not for me--I'm not that pure.

Recently, my brother Michael and I sat in our mother's kitchen, and he told me what he thought love was. "Love is when you love someone after time passes," he said. "After you know them, you still love them. That's love."

I think he's right.

Tuesday, April 06, 2010

Full course life

I want to be fed. I want a meal at a table on a leveled floor. I don't want to stand in line to place my order, or wait for what might be served. I don't want the thing that's still cooking, or the thing that's burnt--but mostly, I don't want to always be waiting for whatever is left over.

Friday, April 02, 2010

Joke by Annie

Q: What does a shy tree need to do?

A: Branch out.

Thursday, April 01, 2010

Sitting at the sidebar

An Orange Sky for my daughter, my brothers, my mother, and my dad.

My salvation lies in their love.