What She Thought vs. What Was vs. What Will Be

from a friend…

Boyfriend Whore

She thought she was a Serial Monogamist
and that as a middle-aged woman
she was dating wisely.

Turns out she’s been a Boyfriend Whore.
She doesn’t know if her children call her Boyfriend Whore,
but she has learned that many young people do
regarding their dating mothers.  She is
Amused – and
Boyfriend Whore Embarrassed.
It is true.
So far she has been a Boyfriend Whore.
She hopes if she says Boyfriend Whore
often enough
she’ll get used to it.

Year of Mindfulness #4: While Taking Self Portraits for Match

 

– Unedited photo by mary macgowan, who loves it when a mistake makes magic

Mistakes. Being alive is a messy business. Oh heavens, all day long – plans go awry, change, switch. How to be okay with that?

This photo, where the sun entered the camera lens in an unexpected way, shows me how wonderful mistakes can be. Look at the clarity of good dog Bailey – so beautiful. And Bailey seems to be saying to me: Stop looking at Match! I love you! Me! Here I am! And she is right. Everything I need is here.  

Bailey is right near me all day and sometimes I scarcely stop to notice her. So, yes, I can appreciate a “mistake” that shows me what is true.  I can be such an idiot.

Cry For You House


Cry For You is one of my songs…Click on Play – above

She sighs.This might be the saddest
house in the world.

He sees her: a cloudy wind drifter on high.
He says, I don’t know how you got to such a leave-you place.
She leans back on the bed. Saddest song, too.

yes, beauty in the decay
yes, photo and song and poem by mary macgowan

He’d Promised They’d Go Out On His Boat

Beauty in the Decay Series #19

A man, keening,
kneeling.
She touched his shoulder:
honey?
but it was burlap
wound around
like a scarf;
ropes curled
in workboot shapes;
hot oil steaming –
not a cigarette.
No man, not
begging forgiveness.
Never (was).
A prayer.

The Beauty in the Decay Series
is attentive to the intersection of nature with human-built things;
how nature will have its way.
The captivating presence of the process.

– photo and poem by mary macgowan

Dating Strangenesses #1

I got divorced about 10 years ago and have been dating on and off for 9 years.  Over the next few months I’ll occasionally introduce you to some of the doozies.  They are all true stories.

I affectionately call this guy My Vampire Spotter.

Our first (and only) date, flowers, a Porsche. During an expensive dinner out, he nonchalantly tells me that he sees Vampires on every corner – he was very clear that he was speaking literally.  The Vampires had red glowing eyes. I stayed through the meal; I shouldn’t have.  Still, nothing happened.  I got home safe.

I remember the music he played in his car, devoid of feeling, techno. I remember the rip in the leather passenger’s seat in his car. I don’t remember his face.  It was only later that I realized the goofball got it wrong.  Vampires don’t wait on street corners. Those are boogey men, aren’t they? Vampires wait in coffins, don’t they?

The Standing Babas

The Standing Babas were men who’d taken a vow never to sit down, or lie down, ever again, for the rest of their lives. They ate their meals standing up . . . They even slept while they were standing, suspended in harnesses . . . The pain was unending and terrible . . . Tormented, tortured, the Standing Babas were never still. They shifted constantly from foot to foot in a gentle, swaying dance . . . The faces of the Babas were radiant with their excruciation . . . [they] assumed a luminous, transcendent beatitude. Light, made from the agonies they suffered, streamed from their eyes . . . The Babas were also comprehensively, celestially, and magnificently stoned. They smoked nothing Kashmiri – the best hashish in the world . . . and they smoked it all day, and all night, all their lives . . . For a tiny moment in the infinitude of his suffering I almost felt it, what the human will can drive the human body to endure and achieve.

– Gregory David Roberts, “Shantaram”

Temperature-Takers

I come from a long line of heat panickers. Temperature-takers. Sweater on, no, sweater off, no, sweater back on.

Heat is worse than cold.  Heat creates deep panic.  I love my air conditioner. We are going to get married. My A.C. & I SHALL LIVE HAPPILY EVER AFTER.

note: photo from National Geographic, late ’60s.

Old Maid (Note peculiar resemblance to Jan.19 self-portrait)

As copied from the cover to a vintage deck: MCM 50′S BUILT-RITE OLD MAID SHAPED CARD GAME

Note the shape of the cards, “to fit small hands.”

When I was young, we actually played Old Maid. The object of the game was to pass the Old Maid card quickly to the next player so as not to get stuck holding her. Whoever had the Old Maid card in her hand at the end of the game WAS the Old Maid – the loser.  Nobody wanted to be an Old Maid.

An Old Maid was also sometimes called a “spinster.”  According to  Florence Falk, “lurking in the spinster’s background was the suggestion of some grand, unconsummated passion — the love which might have been, whose plaintive ‘if only’ helps explain why she became associated with two singular attributes: shame and sacrifice.”

Note: An Old Maid is an unmarried woman of middle age or older.

Note: In the “olden days” I would’ve been called an Old Maid (despite, I assume, two previous marriages)(there might be technicalities here, which might be explored in the future).

To give it a new-age positive spin, I’m an awesomely cool middle-aged single chick.

A Hafiz poem: Cast All Your Votes For Dancing

(PLEASE ALSO VISIT THE WONDROUS BLOGMy Son, The Dancer – Part II )

Cast All Your Votes For Dancing

I know the voice of depression
Still calls to you.

I know those habits that can ruin your life
Still send their invitations.

But you are with the Friend now
And look so much stronger.

You can stay that way
And even bloom!

Keep squeezing drops of the Sun
From your prayers and work and music
And from your companions’ beautiful laughter.

Keep squeezing drops of the Sun
From the sacred hands and glance of your Beloved
And, my dear,
From the most insignificant movements
Of your own holy body.

Learn to recognize the counterfeit coins
That may buy you just a moment of pleasure,
But then drag you for days
Like a broken man
Behind a farting camel.

You are with the Friend now.
Learn what actions of yours delight Him,
What actions of yours bring freedom
And Love.

Whenever you say God’s name, dear pilgrim,
My ears wish my head was missing
So they could finally kiss each other
And applaud all your nourishing wisdom!

O keep squeezing drops of the Sun
From your prayers and work and music
And from your companions’ beautiful laughter

And from the most insignificant movements
Of your own holy body.

Now, sweet one,
Be wise.
Cast all your votes for Dancing!

~ Hafiz ~



My Little Chef Oven

My Little Chef Oven, from the olden days when a little girl could really hurt herself.  With electric burners, no lightbulb heaters.  And butter and bandaids to soothe.  Yes, we were given toys that were dangerous, and we were given a cure that made the burns worse.  But we survived, and the burns did heal, and we eventually outgrew the toys.

Got it, boys?

 

Men Too Loud; Today’s Silence

AGES 20 – 58: MEN MAKING NOISE AT ME…

MY LIFE NOW, ALONE.  SILENCE IN THE MORNINGS, FREE TO GAZE OUT WINDOWS BEFORE RISING

 

I ACCEPT FULL RESPONSIBILITY FOR ALLOWING THESE MEN TO DISRUPT MY LIFE AND MY WELLBEING.  MANY DIFFERENT MEN HAD MANY DIFFERENT AGENDAS; THEY WEREN’T ALL BAD PEOPLE.  I STILL HOPE, ONE DAY, TO FIND A TRUE LOVE TO SHARE SILENCE IN THE MORNINGS. TO GAZE OUT WINDOWS BEFORE RISING.  TO SHARE.

Jan.5, 2012 Mary has a 4-hour stress test tomorrow morning. No one to take her or hold her hand.

No one to take her home after the test and make her a cup of hot tea.  She knows she’s being very self-centered and the world is full of people with much worse problems, but right now she wishes she had a man to sleep next to her and help her out tomorrow.  Tonight she votes in favor of Non-Spinsterhood.

I still enjoy being single – until I don’t.

January 2, 2012

Therapy, inner work, self-care, positive change . . . I can’t just heal myself for the rest of my life!  I must do something with my days.  Indoor gardening?  Small works of art?  More songs?

I could maybe meditate for the rest of my life. Meditate, walking meditations, swim, meditate, eat, meditate, sleep, meditate and so on.  Get a meditation bell.  Meditation could be my “hobby.”  I would be a meditator.

“Mary, what do you do?”

“Well, I’m a meditator.  I meditate many times each day.  I meditate so often that I could be my own monastery.”

OR

I could keep looking for a husband.  A guy to live with for the rest of my life.  (either/or both/or neither)

I’m fine being single – until I’m not.

January 1st, 2012

Can I please be happy being single?

I want to be a wise old woman whom people are drawn to for her wisdom and gardens (even though I don’t like to garden).  A wise old woman who putters about, sings a bit, and paints sunsets or weasels or marvelous toys.

How do I stop longing for a significant other?  Is there an immunization for this desire?

How do I pull my alone act together?  I go through a couple of days okay – then –

WHAM   !   sad sad sad        How do I be me – alone?

God/Universe, half the time I don’t know what I’m writing about I am so full of b.s.