New Mexico gardening is hard.
Which is not a surprise. It's dry. Hot. High altitude. The soil is sandy and rocky.
Things that can grow here must be hardy. Must need little water.
Hollyhocks do well. Roses. Succulents.
I try to look at gardening as a sort of haiku. A one-season riff. This is what I want to present this year. Each time it is redone - an edit.
But it feels more like a sprawling oral narrative. A 1001 Nights. Each time the death is reached, there is a rebirth. An attempt to go just once more. To get it right this time.
Without trying our garden is full of mint, sunflowers, hollyhocks, thyme. Our rose bush is covered with blooms. Like snow.
The things I planted did not fare well. The forget-me-nots didn't even sprout. The catnip came up and withered. The marigolds I bought at the farmer's market are burning, though I have managed to keep them blooming through the baking leaves.
I can only seem to grow aloe. The 6 plants I inherited 5 years ago have multiplied into 18 plants that I am in the process of potting to give away.
There is something in there about giving and getting. About the things passed from one to another.
A cultural inheritance. A personal one.
This garden that is growing without my help is not mine. But it is now. These aloe are not mine. But are.
This land, this place, the writing I do. They are all things that are and are not mine.
I hold them for a time. And then have to walk away from them.
For the last two weeks I've been without a computer. I wrote my last book review on paper and typed it into my phone to send to my editor.
To be away.
Returning to the computer. To my writing saved on it. Has felt odd. I always feel strange coming back to old work. It's like a room that is sealed off for years. Dusty, old-smelling. There is something of a time capsule feel about it.
And it never ceases to be jarring.
Who was I when I wrote these lines? Who am I now? Do I still think this way?
I am in the midst of a new draft of my novel. Of a huge edit of a large poetry project. And to be forced to walk away for 2 weeks has left me feeling a little lost in my own thoughts.
How to find that ground again. When it is almost accidental it was found the first time. This is the question. How does one take what has been given, make it over as your own, keep it going. Even when the person giving is a past self.
The last two weeks have made me feel like I have been wallowing in my own introspection a bit. I need to shake that off. So these posts will hopefully become less about myself and more about the world out there.
The one left for us to tend.
24 June 2013
22 June 2013
17 June 2013
03 June 2013
I have never wanted to be someone else.
I definitely love fashion. Definitely love what make up can do to a face.
I love the armor-like qualities of it all. It's a costume. And it is a wall between you and out there.
Which is why I love drag. Good drag is all about illusion. About unreality.
Recently I've noticed an uptick in the color choices and patterns available in men's fashion. Thank you sweet baby Versace. If any part of the 80s needed to come back it was COLOR. The 90s and their plaid and grunginess bleached out a lot of the vibrancy of 80s fashion. Even in pop music. Everything got a touch darker, grayer.
This is also to say that I find inspiration in the artifice of all of this. That facade.
A local Santa Fean, Pippa Garner is a good example of someone who has taken this idea to the full endpoint. In the 90s Pippa transitioned from male to female in an attempt to invest in herself as she would a car. To 'tinker' with herself. From Trappings: Stories of Women, Power and Clothing by Tiffany Ludwig:
"It was a way of actually making a purchase of something that I can incorporate into myself, and know that it will never have to be insured or stolen or anything else."
Pippa goes on to explain her uniform; a home made t-shirt and tights. The shirt changes every day. She also says that she hopes her look raises 'curiosity'. Almost a silent confrontation. You can read the whole essay, and check out the rest of this great book on Amazon.
While I do not hope to achieve discomfort and I am definitely not going to change my sex for fashion. I see the interest in using clothing, appearance, etc. as a means to promote discussion. To make a statement.
I wish more would play with this.
The closest I can see are goth and rock circles where Adam Lambert and Jeffree Star exist. These sort of neo-glam Bowies. But they are outliers. There has been a move towards some club-goers in NYC and a few other places to wear high heels. I support this wholly. They are sexy, and a heel looks good on men or women.
I want these lines to blend more though. Not that I want to wear dresses, or heels. But maybe a little more freedom of choice in it. Without a stigma. A hassle. Or a bashing.