“Do you know," Peter asked, "why swallows build in the eaves of houses? It is to listen to the stories.” ~ J.M. Barrie, Peter Pan


rising falling

i put this up and took it down and put it up and took it down and worried and agonized and the cat walked across the keyboard more than once, got involved in almost cat fights more than once, and i put this up and took it down, and deleted my tweet about it, and worried some more, because it's a true story and it's not a pretty one, and because my belly ached for 2 days after it happened, and because i was afraid y'all would think oh my god, here we go again, more stuff, more unhappiness, and then i knew that that  was the real fear, the true  fear, the fear of putting it out there.  and so here it is, up again, without a picture, full of fears of all kind.


rising falling, by d smith kaich jones.

in response to today's prompt at dVerse poetics.  fears and phobias.

he is waiting for me in the green humidity,
all ragged breath neediness and falling down life;
he cannot breathe cannot stop the panic cannot stop the disease cannot stop my anger
at my anger,
at the overgrown limbs slapping leaves and leftover rain against my windshield
scratching raspy clawing at me,
at my struggle to get to him
in time
one more time,
his falling down house a bad phone call away,
in the middle of falling down nowhere
down muddy ruts through falling down fields
his gasping fearfilled falling down life falling again harder
and again.

i see his car through the leaves, a hole in the middle of the woods he calls home,
driver's door open striped shirt chest rising falling 
he cannot breathe cannot find air cannot find peace
the fear is growing he cannot breathe the knowledge a monster so big;
i feel my panic feel his panic and i am through the trees, jeep on all 4 wheels,
with the pills
with the medicine
with the money
with the fear i cannot do this anymore.

his body is shaking his chest rising his face tear streaked he looks too thin
his hands need help,
they won't stay still,
but he grabs my passenger door crying i can't do this anymore anymore
his voice aloud, my voice silent, the same words spoken.
i hold out pills, i tell him chew
i tell him sit,
i turn the air conditioner colder,
open a bottle of water with lying hands, hushed, steady;
i talk about nothing and everything and i stay until he is breathing
until he is safe though the shakes don't stop
until his embarrassment pushes me to go.
i leave him behind bundled in loneliness hidden by trees



look ma! no hands!

I am reading when women were birds, one page at a time, often one line  at a time, not in any order right now, just opening the book and letting the words find me, then backtracking to the beginning and reading a bit, and then not.  I like to think I am leaving my own womanbird tracks as I meander across the pages.


I am all grays and silver and champagne glitter lately, softness and sparkle, and driving home last night the tiniest of tiny water droplets drifted and splished across my windshield, glittering the almost nighttime sky.  I am silent and look to my many bowls of words for inspiration; reaching in, eyes closed, the first word I touch is  beginning. 

and so it shall be.


monday:  october morning cat at the open door, the slight chill of fall swirling through still warm sunshine.  a sudden breeze and the hackberry tree lets a leaf go -  it swoops inside the door, just barely, just enough, and lands softly on said cat's head.  at the exact moment i am choosing a word for this month.  the universe speaks its own language, and though i am not fluent, i understand more than a bit.  release, let go, take your hands off the handlebars and coast,  it says.  begin.  close my eyes.  exhale.  open.  i move always forward, even if slowly, moving with my body and the sound of my heart in my ears, and i am always beginning again and again.  i start over.


it is the orange part of the year in other places, but here we are just beginning to see a brighter green, yellow, brown, leaves edged with silver like pages in expensive books.  today is cold enough for a fire and the skies are gray.  across the street i see fallen leaves scattered across the neighbor's yard.  there is a spot in the catawba tree where the leaves are more golden than the others, more golden than they were just this morning.  on the street, a man walks by wearing a black sweater and black beret.  just enough.  not quite time for jackets.  in the house, messes are everywhere - sacks filled with leftovers from my mother's life, bags overflowing with paperwork and unpaid bills, shoes piled atop each other - and here i sit, this almost evening's october cat curled next to my left thigh, her favorite place as i type away, my arm resting on her back.  i've become good at walking past the messes.  used to be they made me crazy and angry, but i've grown past that.  it's a good thing.

friends are out of town or have been asked to not call and it is day 2 of 3 days of solitude.  in the midst of all this messiness, partway clean but mostly not, my soul begins to stretch, sprawl, laze, relax.  i think about painting the top of the table that sits next to my bed. emmatree blue to brighten the coming months, i think.  maybe, i think.  maybe gray.  maybe i will do nothing but let it be.  i feel my soul yawn and nod.