The Gaslight Anthem - “She Loves You”
I love when I am in the middle of creating something and a song comes on that forces me to put it on repeat it, over, and over, and over again. I do this, because while I am creating the song just triggers something in my brain and the creation just seems to spill out everywhere - faster than I ever intended. It feels amazing.
Today, this is one of those creation repeaters that I just can’t get enough of.
Thanks for this particular piece of crazy Mom. I miss you.
~TigressSky © August 13, 2014~
We are always traveling
Into the sunset
In youth always ensured
The sunset will become sunrise
An ascending light of hope
As if by magic
From the dark
Of Pandora’s box
Telling us how
In this new day
In some new way
We can achieve
We can be
We are always traveling
Into the sunset
In aging frames denied
The hopeful light
Descending to stillness
There is no escape
From being locked
Of this moment
We can ever be
We can ever achieve
Grandma and I - I was about 21 or 22 here.
The memories are not organized, they just come, here and there, moments in time remembering being with her or just how she made me feel. A montage of how she looks, her eyes always seemed wide with wonder as she paid attention to exactly what you were saying, doing, needing. Her smile was so constant, she found happiness in so many moments, I don’t know how she ever handled my angst ridden youth filled with depression - sitting on her couch, bummed at the world, she would just smile and listen. I never felt judged, because Grandma did not judge. She just loved.
Sesame Street, Mister Rogers, Bob Ross - whom cheated at painting, according to Grandma. I would take the crayons, spread out on the carpet in front of the TV and follow Bob’s instructions. Grandma was a painter, and even though Bob was a cheater, she wasn’t going to deter a budding artist on her living room floor. She did however tell me, “real painting is not that easy.”
I remember all the other kids could sleep a lot longer and a lot more soundly than I could. Which meant nap time was extra time were it was just me and Grandma. I’d be quiet and watch whatever was on PBS while Grandma would sit in her recliner, quietly observing, while working on crosswords or chatting on the phone with friends.
Grandma and all her Girls!
Grandma’s house always felt like a sanctuary; like a safe haven where you could shed all the cares and worries of the world at the door, come right in and just be yourself. I remember the green davenport, loving to sit and rock in it, “not so fast, not so hard.” Her bathroom was so giant! I loved standing in front of the mirror, putting on fancy things, and pretending to be a movie star.
Grandma would never fill the tub full with water, “you are just in here to get clean hunny, you don’t need so much water to get clean.” The first memory I have of Grandma bathing me, a wash cloth in hand, scrubbing my arms, back, legs - it was heavenly, safe, and relaxing. Even in just a few small inches of water. I wonder if Grandma thought I was strange for always wanting her to give me a bath when I visited?
I am sure it wasn’t such a strange thing though. I mean, she did help raise me and she understood me better than I think my own parents may have. Being born as sick as I was, the doctors prescribed a liquid medicine I had to take every day. The disgusting taste it came with is indescribably horrid, so much so that just my memory of it makes my taste buds cringe and my brain begin to prepare my body for the coming onslaught. My Father use to hold me down, while I screamed and struggled, as my mother tried to put a spoonful of medicine in my mouth.
"It was so horrendous to watch," Grandma said, "I always felt so sorry for you."
Then one day my parents went out on a date and Grandma had to give me the medicine. She knew she couldn’t hold me down and force it into me. She also knew I had to have it or I would get sick again. So Grandma did, what every good grandmother of an overly analytic child does, she put me on the kitchen counter and reasoned with me.
Now that we were eye to eye, equal, Grandma began, “now Tigress, you have to take your medicine and I can’t force you to …” and by the time she was finished, I was ready. I took my medicine, made the most horrible face, and Grandma never had to struggle with me. Grandma knew exactly how to handle me, when so many others could never seem to get it.
She held a buttercup under my chin one day, in her backyard, and then told me, “you love butter!”
"Yep, see," she held the buttercup under Trisha’s chin and the yellow glowed off of her skin. "A buttercup knows when someone loves butter. If you love butter your skin will glow yellow."
I proceeded to run inside, open the yellow margarine tub, and eat some directly from it with a spoon. I had to know if I really loved butter or not. I had to know if Grandma’s buttercup science was correct. It was, I did love eating that butter!
"What are you doing!" Grandma laughed with a loud voice as she took the butter from me.
"You are right Grandma, I do love butter!"
She just laughed, I don’t think I remember Grandma ever being mad at me. Just smiling and reasoning with me.
Grandma (far right) with Grandpa and friends at Portland’s Rose Room - 1943ish.
Grandma loved bowling so much! Every time we went to her house I was always hopeful we would get to go bowling. I sucked at it, I still do. Yet Grandma was a bowling magician! She could get a strike almost every time. She knew how to bowl and she always tried to teach us the moves. Sometimes I would get it right, most of the time I just spent laughing with my sisters, my cousins, my Grandma.
If I didn’t have my Grandma in my life, I don’t think I would really understand the meaning of unconditional love. After college, when I moved back to Oregon, I spent a lot of time at Grandma’s house. She was therapy to me. She was a place of happiness. I needed her love so much.
I told her about my life, things I don’t like to talk about, and for the first time, this woman who just never showed any unhappiness, told me about hers. Just the bits that she could share to let me know she understood. It made me realize that in life, you can choose to be bitter over what harshness you are handed -or- you can choose to just love being alive! That is the greatest lesson Grandma taught me - to just love everything and everyone that comes in and out of your life. Regardless of what hardship our happiness it brings.
I can only hope to live in honor of my Grandma’s legacy by bringing and being this kind of love in the world, in the life I have been given. If we are reincarnations, we are simply reincarnations of those we came from. I feel overwhelmingly blessed to have come from Hazel, my Grandma, who is the one female in my life who showed me exactly what it means to love unconditionally and to love everyone; regardless.
Grandma Hazel & her little sister Leola
It Isn’t All Glass Slippers Ladies
by TigressSky ©July 23, 2014
I can’t even begin to imagine
What it would have been like
To be worthy of a Cinderella story
Swept out of the poverty
And into the abundance
No need to work
No need to push
No need to try
All the time
In the world
To work on nothing
Besides that which makes me
by TigressSky ©July 23, 2014
It is at the core of being that the child lays. Put to bed, to find an endless sleep, by the constant drive to grow up, and grow up I did.
To truly enjoy life, to truly get the most out of it, you can never put the child to bed. You just can’t. She has got to get up with you every morning, look in the mirror at the old which you have become, and make you laugh at it.
She has got to ride to work with you, sit in your grey cube, and give you the courage to dream of what it will take to get out of there. She should laugh at the ridiculousness of it all - for, and with you. She should inspire you to try all the new things you can, because one of them may be the best thing you have ever done.
In the end, it is she that will be there holding your hand, while all that is in this life fades away … as it always does; in everything, in every way.
She’s putting herself fully into her own care.
It is a revolutionary step for her. Far too long, she’d been separated from her own body, heart and soul wisdom. She’d lived on borrowed intelligence, alienated from her original longing. Her many journeys underground has helped her separate her genuine voice from the counterfiet one. She’s not willing to live a soul sapping life anymore. She’s stepping out of the only life she’d known.
She’s putting her trust and vote in her deepest truth. She cannot yet pinpoint her longing. It’s still shaky for her. All she knows is the feeling of rightness in her bones.She’s not sure where she’s leading herself in her outside world. It does not make complete sense yet. She only knows that every decision is taking her closer to her centre. She’s walking through each of her fears of survival ~ her heart melting, her eyes limpid pools of vulnerability.
She can feel her spirit igniting, and she’s willingly sacrificing herself in the fire of her longing.
She’s going back to innocence.
by: Sukhvinder Sircar
The Wolves at My Door
by TigressSky (July 11, 2014)
So how do I move on?
How do I re-ignite that bright shining fiery confidence in who I am; how I am?
How do I walk comfortably in my own skin? A skin, that since my teens, has filled me with the despair of it’s ever numbering imperfections. Imperfections of my minds eye. Imperfections placed upon my vision by society, a drunken mother, magazine covers, and teenage boys who “oink” at me as I walk down the street.
Most importantly, how can I become comfortable wearing “alone” again?
When you fall off the pedestal of others hopes and dreams of you … you fall ever so much farther than the original starting point. Deeper, ever deeper. As the hand of despair grips tighter, pulls hard, placing you farther than Hades reach has ever been. Deeper, ever deeper. Until there is nothing left for your heart except …
Clawing my way out, I can see over the edge. I grip tightly to the precarious threshold, fingers bloodied. Eyes pensively peering into the light of the bright world around me. A world that keeps trying to deposit me here - under my desk, outside the hands of the most ancient of Gods. A world that screams out at me, don’t stop, don’t stop, don’t stop!
My nails now scratched short enough to play the music of my soul. My tear stained cheeks are covered in the mud of the past. My heart beats with the love I felt, with the love I feel, with the love I have yet to discover.
So it is I prepare to step out, to step forward, to step onto the plains and ride the white buffalo into the bright orange sunset. A sunset that will lead to the final years this life has to offer.
I can’t continue to grasp at straws that have weaved them-self into a basket of ideals I simply no longer fit into.
Besides, you should never put all of your eggs into one basket.
Especially when your eggs don’t produce.
A gift of freedom from the Gods? Or simply a cursed broken record formed in your youth? The one that can’t get past, can’t get past … can’t … get … past.
So it is I turn back into a child. I turn back into my heart. I turn back into a wild woman, Lady Godiva, holding tight the bison mane of adventure as the wind blows through my hair, across my face, and my past becomes my present - except now I hold the reigns.
I’m thirsty … I hunger. Yet what will fulfill my cravings?
That is what I have to discover. That is what I have to risk it all for.
Will be empty.
If I don’t.
That is where people die - crying. Inside a soulless shell of missed opportunities wrapped in a life of “what if’s?” Stuck, waiting, for death, for this moment in which no one is around to stop you. A moment in which you realize that all those times you did the right thing, said the right thing, where the right thing, never mattered. All those “right things” affected no one who desired them as much as it affected you who performed them …
In the end.
How many adventurous opportunities have I missed while maintaining some form of comfort in my life that would all slip away someday anyway?
How many problems have I placed upon my temple by giving into a hope that this time, THIS ONE DAMNED TIME, I would be seen, I would be loved, wholly, fully, completely, for who and what I am - always.
Yet the expectation of love seems to be that I will never change. That I will never grow. That I will never become more than this moment. That I will be okay as second choice - forever. That I will accept my place in the lot of them and never question the tire treads of their forgetfulness across my heart.
Believing that nothing will ever disrupt the comfort is …
Everything changes, or else it dies.
Search and destroy.
That is how you grow.
That is how you become.
Outside of emptiness.
Inside of self.
Stop Dreaming Cinderella
~TigressSky ©July 10, 2014~
And there he was
Like the storybooks had always foretold
It was instantaneous
It was dangerous
It was a momentary skip
In my heart’s beat
Before reality’s request
And there he wasn’t
Like life had always guaranteed
It was instantaneous
It was expected
It was a lifetime spent
Wondering what stability might offer
If only hope would let go
As age set in
image: Flaming Ship of Ocracoke
~TigressSky - June 27, 2014~
Across the flames a ship can sail
As long as the Captain can handle the burn
Of everything he has ever know
Becoming lost to the embers
He walks barefoot across the hot coals
Without exhaustion of challenge
To take just one cool drink
From the fountain of youth
So it is,
Time to breath,
In this moment …
Along the beating shoreline
Of your heart
There is no return
Only new beginnings
Of an aged heart
So it is this Captain
Shall cartwheel and spin
Shall stick his tongue out and grin
Shall dance and sing of many things
He would else wise