I am full of holes A human sieve Emotions pour through me But they don’t stay I am putty I allow people to play Mold my identity Sometimes irresponsibly
There are holes in my soul My experiences are vague I can’t make sense of Any feeling, any day Nothing sticks Everything flows through me While time passes away
My mind is full of holes Things that happened long ago Morphed into memories Blank spots Illusions and stories That I can’t show Shape-shift and sway In my conscious They are close But happening so far away
My body is full of holes Incomplete Fragments of humanity People I meet Everyone sees me And experiences me differently
I must be careful Not to fall in my holes They like to hide I don’t know their exact location It’s hard to see when I’m inside Their depth is immeasurable Their deception penetrable
Old holes and new holes Needing repair How can I heal myself When there are holes everywhere?
What is the truth? A perception A feeling A created reality The space that exists Between you and me You say I’m toxic I think I’m healthy Which one of us can’t see?
Is truth what exists When there is silence When the mind is quiet If the mind is ever quiet How can we find it
Our truths are not the same One persons truth Is anothers pain Is there one truth? Is there one right way?
Sometimes I think I know Other times it’s grey So many stories So many lives The mind is powerful But sometimes it lies
Have you ever been lost In your own mind? Maybe I create my truth It may bend a little to connect With you The more I experience The more I question what’s true It feels like questioning Is the right thing to do
I decide What’s right But I can always change my mind Perhaps the truth doesn’t exist Or maybe it’s just hard to find
We are all living separate truths In our own lives The writers of history The makers of time But what is mine?
I stare at myself in the mirror Expression lines Creases Crinkles A story etched into my forehead When did I get wrinkles?
I want them to leave Exit immediately I rub creams, oils, masks Apply sunscreen desperately I wonder if you see what I see Instead of looking into my eyes You are looking at my lines Folds that tell you I’m getting old
Markers of my experience My time A life of stress and excitement Hard decisions I’ve had to make All the paths I’ve chosen to take Repentance, glory, and sin Worn on my skin A face full of life Seeking A bottle of collagen My youth has disappeared overnight
I stare back at them hard I see every faint crease Every mark I run my hands over their indentation Setting an intention To love myself I’m learning so slowly
I try hard not to move My eyebrows, my eyes Trying to improve The situation As if I keep still They will reside My forehead will smooth Milky white
My perfection, my youth Faintly slips away I suppose these lines are here to stay I find myself further inside Tempted to hide My flaws, my face I think about Botox Trying to erase the evidence
I embrace my age I embrace my lines Knowing my wrinkles Don’t define my character I want you to see my life My old soul And know that’s it’s full My happiness shows through my crinkles I smile deeply Crows feet Even though it creates What I hate
I want to be this person I want these lines I want all of my experiences My expressions, appearances But I fear growing old We’ve all been sold An illusion of perpetual youth Unflawed, non-reality Smooth skin And told it’s our duty To look this way I accept who I am in the mirror I refuse to pay These wrinkles are here to stay
And then with a start I turn the off the lights I can no longer see, only feel My innermost self, beautiful My lines disappear in the dark My skin recedes Blackness envelops me And I become energy
I release my deepest desires Through my eyes I still don’t have an answer I still don’t know why Must I always fill up my time For it isn’t until I have space That I can arrange and place My feelings My dreams unrealized Quiet my mind
I’m a relationship with the Sun I found the one It’s bright and yellow A handsome fellow The trees whisper Don’t be afraid For I can’t listen Until I’m silent Until all the feelings have been flushed away The pain sways with the breeze I stomp my frustrations out On the crunchy leaves Nature restores my energy Only then can I say To the blue sky, the sun, the trees I trust you
I trust you and I don’t understand I had so many things planned That didn’t happen That I wanted to happen I made demands The Universe laughs gently And they don’t land I throw tantrums But it’s all bigger than me I can’t possibly see Still I make more plans It just happens Like breathing So easily
It’s not until I leave that I can see My imagined plans and designs And how it’s not aligned It somehow makes sense in my mind Yet I get so intertwined That I can’t find the answers Until I step away My perspective changes Life rearranges My place looks different from far away I can’t see myself fully in the space I usually stay
I feel lost I say to the trees And they look back at me You’re not lost, you just can’t see I come back with fresh eyes And realize There are no answers I must keep walking Things will materialize You’re not stuck You just don’t know where you’re going It will all unfold Try not to hold So tightly
Release your pain to me I can take it Say the leaves Don’t do anything Listen to me sing All you have to do is breathe The sun will never leave Even when you can’t see It’s just waiting patiently Stay for awhile I’ll make you smile Trust me
I threw the salsa across the room Smashed an avocado on the floor Exploded a seltzer on the refrigerator door I don’t understand what to do And I don’t know what’s in store For me I can’t see a way through So I take it out on my food My anger falls on the groceries On my clean white walls After all I can always get more
But my anger is just fear I’m afraid of not getting what I want The only one who can see My tantrum is my apartment My secrets are reflected in the windows I cannot hide from what’s inside It comes out eventually
Staring at the chunks of tomato on the ground I feel heavy and still haven’t found An answer I turn it over again and again My frustration bubbles up And spills out all over my kitchen It feels like I can’t win Judge me all you want But throwing food is not a sin
Smeared avocado on the hard wood Creamy green Laughs at me My irrational actions Immaturity
Wasted groceries Money can’t buy me what I want My smashed food Destroyed unnecessary Puddles reflect my unmet needs Unsatisfactory
So easy to make a mess Takes so little time But cleaning up is a procees Picking up the pieces is Unglamorous I won’t share my un-success I’m embarrassed by my regress By my silly actions My tainted floor Unrealized passions I always want more
But somehow I feel better Pressure released Broken glass Dreams smashed This feeling will pass Nothing lasts I let my mess sit for awhile Maybe the universe will see And smile favourably, take pity
I still bargain with something I don’t believe in Momentarily Looking for a reason Letting go is not easy
Maybe we all take it out on something else Other people, driving, food, exercise We are all trying to get by Do whatever helps You deal and survive With life
Maybe letting go is like a smashed avocado Guacamole on the floor I don’t know what this struggle is for It feels like everything is falling apart Perhaps it’s a new start My expectations explode and resettle And then I explore Something better
When do I become an adult And if I become one Do I stay that way?
Is it a state of mind Like being high That I can slip in and out of When it wears off Go back to my childish ways
And then do I make a decision To be an adult again I do my laundry and pay my bills It’s a fluid motion, a negotiation Perhaps it happens at a certain age When I have children, get married Or reach a certain stage I know many people who own a house Have pets and a spouse But certainly have not figured it out Maybe it’s when I can rent a car Vote, smoke, and go to a bar
Maybe no one is an adult It’s just a made-up idea A word we play with Trying to be something that we’re not Do I become an adult when I have responsibility Show up to work, participate in society And give up adulting when I do drugs and smoke pot But it’s okay for adults to gamble Get drunk, argue with kids on the internet I guess we’re not done growing yet
What does it mean to be fully grown Developed Does it mean that I own property Save money and achieve financial security Or does it just have to do with my body? What about those that never grow fully Must I be fully grown mentally, emotionally?
And do I stay there permanently This state of being grown I looked it up in the dictionary But I still don’t know
Who made the rules about being an adult Perhaps it’s emotional maturity When I do something wrong I admit It is my fault The ability to communicate appropriately Or maybe it’s a declaration A decision we make arbitrarily
I’m an adult when I say I’m one For we are never done Growing, evolving No matter the age Maybe I can be an adult at any stage
Or perhaps I became one and I didn’t even know It happened when I wasn’t looking Through my life experience My highs and lows Day to day My actions will show If I’m adulting
As I move through time The more I find That no one really knows What they are doing
I’m throwing up. In a car, in Ecuador. And no one notices. It’s 5am, I try to close my eyes in the early morning light and sleep, but my stomach disagrees with my desires. The winding road does not agree with me either. I open my small empanada bag, my discarded breakfast, and continue purging. How is everyone sleeping through this? I’m embarrassed and relieved at the same time, not wanting to draw attention to my sickness. Please make this bumpy journey to the Amazon end.
I finally arrive, silently praying to something I don’t believe in, to feel better. Humidity envelopes me as I attempt to settle into my new surroundings, pretending like I feel okay, both for myself and for the people around me. Apparently I still have not figured out how to take care of myself when I’m sick, and I agree to go for a hike. I trudge along the path, reaching the Amazonian river, and fall asleep on a rock in the shade.
I come back, I’m still throwing up. I can’t stop. I finally accept the fact that I am not well, and go ask for help. Except I don’t get the help that I want. Instead, a self-proclaimed Shaman blows tobacco smoke in my face, hits me repeatedly with leaves, and gives me tea. I have bad energy. But somehow it works, I emerge from my sickness, smelling of herbs and tobacco, grateful to not be vomiting.
I meet you, sick, laying on the floor. It’s not until I’m healed that I notice you. Ayahuasca, I overheard you, and I want to know more, can I join you? Even though I’ve been unwell? Perfect you tell me, I’ve already been fasting. I’m invited into your ceremony, into the Amazon, into the unknown. I discover new plants and animals that I’ve never seen before. Noises I’ve never heard before. I meet the Shaman, in a foreign place, but I don’t understand what’s happening. I look to you, you’ve done this before, you have experience. I’m grateful for your presence and afraid of things I have not experienced, the darkness, the unknown.
It’s night, I can barely see. I’m sitting in a chair, made of wood and anticipation. I snort tobacco and water, it burns and involuntary tears run down my face. What am I doing? You are given a large glass, Ayahuasca. I’m afraid, I don’t want that much, I try to bargain with the Shaman but my pleas, my fears are not translated. You give me a large glass and I drink it, I have to. I can’t go back, I brace for what will come, in my body, in the darkness. The candle is blown out, and in the blackness doubt seeps in. What am I doing here? Am I crazy? I just took drugs in the middle of the jungle, I don’t know anyone, and I don’t know what will happen. What if I die? I wait. But you look so calm. Time creeps slowly through the night. I don’t want to do this, but I’ve already made my choice. I wait for my consequences.
I’m afraid. I whisper to you and I feel myself leaving, but I don’t know where I’m going. I don’t want to go. The Shaman must sense my fear. He comes over and the world starts swirling around my head with his tobacco leaves. A burning ember is spit on my face, I feel it burning, but I can’t find my face. I open my eyes and the Shaman is a demon, dancing around me. He sucks the darkness from my head and I’m transported into another universe. Fear consumes me, I desperately want this to end, I have a strong urge to stay here, in my body, in the world, in control. And then I don’t have a body. I travel through other worlds and universes, through a portal, I realize that it’s infinite. It never ends. On the edge of the world, looking down into the abyss, I vomit into the emptiness, bodyless, on the floor. I suddenly experience myself as a little girl. I travel through my childhood, righting all the wrongs, re-parenting myself. For the first time I feel kindness and compassion for myself as a child. I image my life differently, all my needs are met, I’m happy and cared for. I do things differently for myself, the things my parents couldn’t do. I heal myself in this timeless universe.
My body comes back, my mind follows. I follow the trails of light back to a familiar place, a bed. I feel calm. The experience sets in and I process. I want to share my experience with you, I compare my experience with my expectations. I wish I could let go more, enjoy the journey. I’m grateful for all my experiences, this new compassion and love I feel for myself, my adult and child self. Nature pulls me apart and heals me simultaneously. I settle into the Amazon, the aftermath of Ayahuasca, into this new experience.