It’s purple tree season in Oaxaca: the Jacaranda flavor of Dr Seuss tree, and vendedoras still sweep up some of the yellow petals of late-blooming Primavera/Trumpet trees before they can set up their booths in the mornings. Forget everything you thought you knew about trees. There are no green leaves.
Coconut oil is as thin and clear as water this morning when I raid the kitchen to pour it on my thirsty skin. We are at 5,102 feet (1,555m), reaching up toward the sun. The passing weeks have stoked the furnace of the Oaxacan air, like the vendors do to…
I have new scars.
My roomie’s pitbull bit me in the face my second day back in Oaxaca. Welcome home. She left my nose. Just a warning. Add those scars to the noise: scars like rosetta-stone-tattoos of my story, faded white against an increasingly complex pattern of Jackson Pollock freckles; surely if I look close enough I can see through it all to the skin. We’re waiting for all the puppies to be weened so the pit can go back and live with Shai’s parent’s in the mountains. In the meantime, I tiptoe around the house while it growls at…
Full moon in a very different sky: a culture that feels more alien every day as it marches towards nationalism, racism, fundamentalism, fear. This is how Rome fell. This is how Germany went blind. This is the implosion. And it hurts to be here. It hurts to be from here. I want to go home to my new home, where the full moon is probably burning a hole in my roof, lighting up the jasmine blooms, working the giant death moths into orgy. Instead, I am here. …
This has become predictable. It’s 3AM.
I’m not in my house now, and I always trip over that stair, even in the light. So my foot is bleeding. The moon in all it’s golden glory craves attention like a drag queen, so its tides of magnetism beckon every living creature to wake, to applaud, a cacophony of ovation. I didn’t realize how stressed out I was this month until I didn’t bleed. Ovation taunting ovulation. So the dogs are serenading the lunar night. Light flashes in the window and the thunder is quick to the pulse. Big heavy…
Life has always felt surreal: I’m a textbook aquarian. But it’s wild that I am standing here. I simply drove away one day and here I am: a palette of tropical skittles, cactus, fruit, dust, sun. Sun so bright it shines right through you like a prism and so hot it bakes the earth till it smokes.
But right now it’s dark. It’s full-moon dark: eyes adjust and everything is alien, solarized, including the flicker of that roach on the wall that just dashed behind the cabinets. …
You’re a dust devil my grandma said.
Tangles from the desert-wind.
Wouldn’t let my mother brush my hair.
Was never still.
Now I’m standing in this storm.
Hair lashing in my eyes.
Still her, or her again.
The wind playing with my hair.
The wind playing the hair.
Indecisive air breathing through my clothes.
Splash, gusts, birdcalls. Roar.
Whipping itself into in the scent of my skin.
Bear fat. Balm of Gilead. Brine. Ozone.
….Last July I bought this balm
….from a man named Pixie who raises bees.
….So hot and dry that my nose would…
“Calor,” he said, at me for fanning my eyes, not having seen the tears. Yea, sure. That too. Another sentimental moment pierced by the the pungent obviousness of my foreignness. Sigh. But I was also a little self congratulatory that I even understood him. It only took ten days of trial-by-fire Cuban-Spanish immersion. Do you know how fast Cubans talk? And with the vibrance of a beat poet in Queens. My taxi pulled away from the lights of Havana. I never cry. But after two weeks in Cuba I wasn’t anywhere close to wanting to leave, or to missing home…
The violent tides of winter gather
A viscous ocean umbra of white air high above my life races by headlong, determined to to smash itself on the wall of the mountains
air determined to take down mountains, the mountains, a gate, a reservoir, a dam
“I only need time,” it thinks
The birds, dizzy in turbulence, the ecstasy of tossing their bodies relentlessly one over the other, swimming, diving
Everything shining with the wet of the rain, the breath from the sea exhaled on the rocks, sequins and fish scales and glitter
Shining from light that comes from nowhere: there is no sun under this sky, the dark glows
Golden wet leaves that weigh nothing, billowing in a show to fly and not rot
or “The Techie-Hipster Epidemic, a Theory”
CRED: Big shout out to ARCADE board member (and friend) Callie Neylan, Executive Director and Editor Kelly Rodriguez, Managing Editor Erin Kendig, and the other amazing people over at the incredible publication ARCADE where this article was first published. ARCADE celebrated its 35th anniversary in 2017 and I was honored to be published and featured on the cover of issue 35.3 Winter 2017. http://arcadenw.org/article/the-unbearable-lightness-of-being-in-tech
Now I’m finally getting around to sharing it here.
I heard Muhammed Yunus speak a few weeks ago and one of his ideas has become sand in my oyster. I can’t get it out of my head. And I want to share it, socialize it, see the seed grow, test it a bit.
Muhammed is a short, grey haired Bangladeshi who, despite an air of gravitas, seems as if he would prefer a hug over a handshake. His social entrepreneur work and civil society work with microcredit and micro-finance led him to win the Nobel Peace Prize in 2006 (and many other awards). The crowd at this talk no-doubt…