Someday, I hope to find an outlet that wants to support my passion projects. I want to make a living hearty enough to support a home in a temperate region, near water, that sustains a large garden by writing poetry books and strange novels.
Last night I had a dream about maple seeds twirling around me that felt so grounded in reality I didn’t realize I was dreaming until my dog woke me up to be let outside. I thought, “that first chapter of Braiding Sweetgrass must’ve really spoken loudly to me”. I’d read it weeks ago so truly this I believe. I dreamt of Skywoman and I dreamt that I’d found forgiveness for Eve. I woke with zest, ready for a day of hard work in the garden and a morning full of poetry and creamed coffee.
It was to my pleasant surprise that I walked out onto my garden deck, carrying that coffee in my grandmother’s fox mug, to find the glass table, my potted plants, my citronella candles, my beautiful little marijuana seedlings, all decorated with maple seeds—plucked dragonfly wings—and more still cascading down from what looked like Heaven. That was 8 AM, and in the Spring/Summer months 8 AM is yellow, the blue of the Winter mornings that I love dearly is shed in the earliest hours of 4 and 5, and I’ve not been waking up that early for a long time now.
I don’t try to believe in mystical coincidences, giving credence to these happenings to a higher power when the magic of simple healthy life is a miracle to be gracious for alone, but sometimes life has a way of making them hard to ignore. An italicized idea snug in the middle of a mundane sentence called “The Morning Routine”. And isn’t that really the moral of the Skywoman mythology/belief? Either way, I returned some of my coffee to the Earth, and I hope it was enough to say thank you for such blessed sights.
I’ve seen a lot of ugly sights in my life, and so I’m trying hard to remain grateful for every beautiful ones. Especially since that afternoon in November where I closed my mother’s dead eyes. I’m haunted quite literally by my mother’s ghost and not in the sense that we’d have hoped for jokingly when she was alive. I like to imagine, even just for my own sanity that she is in these maple seeds, in my seedlings, in the grasses, the clovers, the coffee…
Some days I don’t know what to write in the mornings, so I don’t. I study, or garden, or clean… But days like today—when the laundry has piled and the floors beg me for a mop—it all boils over into my dreams. I know I’m on fire or steaming; I’m pouring over the edge with some experience, well of thoughts, emotionally ripe and it all must flow out of me somewhere. So I find a page and I let it bleed red.
Perhaps one day these seeds of thoughts will be a great maple. Those who plant the seeds of maple trees never live to see how tall the trees grow, or live drink of their sugar even one time, do they? And it’s okay that this is the way. I believe it is so, anyway. –Paige
Paige Six | 5.22.21
My husband told me that once he knows the right decision has been made he closes the door to the past. I couldn’t be more opposite, truth be told. I think that if I have a destiny it’s to be a star-crossed lover wandering the corridors of the endless past’s could-have-been. And this is why I write poetry so effortlessly—not good poetry effortlessly, but to say that poems flow out of me as small stories, but I can never find it in me to map out a book. I can’t narrow down quite what I’d have wanted it all to be. I think I like the murky waters, the crabs that burrow and wait for a toe to snap. The snakes and the algae making microscopic nets to feed the plentiful small the creates a ‘whole’. I think we’re so arrogant to call what we have within the range of human grasp ‘whole’. We’re no different from cladophora’s long green hairs matting the floor of a clear water pond until it is a marsh, meadow, forest floor.
We are all dust, and we are all something more and something less before that. Isn’t it beautiful? This is the story I tell when I write a poem. I tell the story of how I should have been a better mother, how I was the best mother I knew how to be. How I loved what was never mine, how I long for what is lost to me. I write about my fortune, how the broken pieces always fall into place like autumn leaves cover the floor and protect the sleeping earthen soil, all her yellow, purple, and especially green. I write the emotional alchemy of existing in a moment and how the true-self betrays the same self. How I try to wrangle what is changing and alive in me. How I try to chase the moments worth living with a pencil and how I bleed all over the page how the moments that almost killed me could have saved my life had the star’s aligned… or rather more likely had I said the wrong thing just right.
I fall to the ground a seed, just like any of you. And I grow into something that is to blossom, to bloom, to be consumed and to become something else, metaphorically and physically. I age with grace because these seasons are mine to admire. One Spring will be my last and I might not make it to the Winter to bloom once more as witch hazel medicine that tends to Summer’s burns with psalm balms in the shape and sound of a poem vibration from my limbic soul out my lips to the ears of whoever chooses to listen. No, I too will have my curtain close. And from there no matter how my poems are received, regardless of if they are cherished or perish along side me—no matter how many children I have to live on and remember me—I will be gone. From then until the end of time. And from the edge of time, who knows? I don’t. -Paige
I’m obsessed with the 2019 limited Netflix series Un-Natural Selection. I don’t know how I missed this show. I’m not sure why whenever I am relying on Netflix to suggest things to me they throw so much crap my way, meanwhile fucking art like Un-Natural Selection or Midnight Gospel come to me late and through the grapevine!
If you haven’t watched Un-Natural Selection, it’s a variety of documentary style episodes following today’s pioneers in gene-editing techniques, artificial intelligence, and people suffering through genetic disorders or currently incurable diseases. The show presents a complex situation of humanity talking about the issues of gene editing, confronting ethical and technological challenges, and allows the viewer to form their own opinions. I love it, and immediately recommended it to my Grandma.
It reminds me of a Love and Radio episode I absolutely loved and have listened to times over: Doing the No No. The episode interviews Adam Zaretsky, a self-described bioartist, mad scientist, and pornographer!
Paige Six | 5.1.2021
I tried to capture the moon rising last night. But the moon rose too late around my part of the world an at my altitude. These were my Egg Moon photographs from last year. I’m still incredibly proud of them. – ♥ Paige
*all images are unedited
Paige Six | 4.7.2020
So yesterday I enrolled in college almost accidentally, but certainly impulsively!
I’m going to go back to get a science degree in Botany/Horticulture. This is a big shift from my previous physics focus; I’m going to have to take a surprising amount of new courses because of that. But I think I’m good for it. I think my problem with my initial college focus was three things:
₁. I wasn’t happy about the actual practice of the jobs. I am an active person who likes to move around and to change focus. I think working in environments that shift with the seasons will serve my desires.
₂. As a single mother the demand and focus on time away from home simply was unacceptable.
₃. Minimizing debt. I have a stunning amount of education on a very small tab and I intend on keeping it that way. I’m well below the average debt margin for a person my age in America of equal education. While I might have to take on some extra debt I plan on paying courses outright this time around.
I have some real life longevity goals, but first I need to have the credentials to achieve them. So this is my first step. With luck and patience I’ll have my new Associates degree lined up in 2 years, because I plan on taking one-two classes at a time for the more challenging requirements. Because I already spent 3 years at a university I will likely have a good amount of credits accounted for. Basic mathematics, humanities, arts, and language requirements should all be accounted for leaving me the ability to focus on my actual desired course load.
If I decide to take on a full course load I could potentially have the degree in less than a year. But I don’t think it would be wise. I’m not in a rush. I want to have high scores and be able to do this at my leisure. My daughter is still home, and young enough to need me frequently. I also will need to be in school for some of my more focused classes working with the plants or in a lab, so I can’t set myself up for failure by devoting all of my time to school when I know that I will have obligations at home to compete for time with.
On a darker note I had a miscarriage yesterday and no it’s not my first. While I’m not trying to get pregnant by any means, I have to admit that it was a strange and sad way to wrap up what was turning out to be a very optimistic day. I’ll keep my head up, of course. I don’t know what I would have done if I’d gone back to school only to find out that I was expecting again.
I went a long time in my life without ever getting pregnant, and not for being careful. I don’t know why now all of a sudden I keep being thrust into the hormonal whirlwind of it. Sometimes it really feels as if the whole world paused while I figured myself out and now that I’ve become more comfortable in my skin it’s fast forwarding, everything is all happening at once.
Ultimately an unexpected pregnancy was what stopped my training for the military in 2019. Granted it was the first in a succession of unfortunate events not the least of which being COVID and losing my beloved job. 2021 is looking to be just as wild and unpredictable as it’s preceding year, which was just as trying as the year before that in my life. It was 2 weeks after my wedding that I found out and frankly my body hasn’t been the same since.
Every year people make resolutions, but I like to meditate on a word. In 2019 my word was Discipline. In 2020, I was so broken up about the death of my mother that I didn’t pick a word. And in 2021 my word was Remain. I think I picked that for 2021 because 2020 was the first time in my life that I actually wasn’t on the run from or to something. I had a creative renaissance in my late 20’s and 2020 allowed me to live in it, without having to play strange geometric scheduling puzzle games with my time.
I came out of 2020 knowing that I am ready to start making decisions. Not because I had to (because I don’t have to change a thing), but because I know myself well enough to start cementing my foundation. Perhaps many people will think I’m too old for that. But my time was never my own until now, and so I unapologetically have gotten to know myself better. I didn’t live for a boss. I got off of the internet for a year and didn’t chase ‘likes’, ‘comments’, or popularity. I started my own website, I drafted my own books, I started my first novel, and created freely.
Now I’m going to try and make a new dream come true. I hope with this education to do many things. But most of all, I hope to find balance, wonder, and to make the world a better greener place.
I became in a family way when I was 17. My foster mother started to accuse me of sleeping with her jobless boyfriend and changed the locks, leaving me to sleep outside many nights when they went out to clubs. I reported it to services, my teachers, and my nurses. I told my health teacher that I felt the stress affecting my child. I trusted him, I had no one. He told me not to worry.
At 30 I began to explore epigenetics and the research suggesting that trauma can be passed down through generations. Epigenetics translates literally to “above genetics”, referring to external modifications to a person’s programming. I say programming because that’s how it makes sense to me. If you’re familiar with binary, how the 1’s and 0’s turn lines of code on or off, outside forces can do this to traits within us, turn them on and off.
If you’ve created a child at any time, the 1’s and 0’s within you get passed down as they exist in that moment. In short: these modifications do not change the DNA sequence, but rather, they affect how cells “read” genes. I think about the shared trauma in the world and how it’s sinister nature infects the future; contaminates quite literally the gene pool. Ignorance is certainly not bliss.
Paige Six | 2021
It’s a rainy Spring morning in New England and you’ve got both an oversized mug and time to kill. Your mug is porcelain white, but pained a bit at the lip (from accidentally dipping a paintbrush in it a few too many times). You think the paint blends in with the coffee splotter, anyway, and tell yourself that perhaps it gives the cup some personality (happy accidents).If you hold the handle with your left hand the World might read a tiny type-face script in Peace Lily Green that says “𝙱𝚘𝚘𝚔 𝚆𝚘𝚛𝚖”. But you’re a righty and you’ve purchased the mug for yourself, anyway, so the little green letters greet you happily with every fleetingly warm sip.
You are a bookworm, so you read a book. It’s the best way to spend a grey morning. You like to save the sunny days for tidying and cleaning, they don’t have the proper blue hue to offset the warm beige of a book page, and you like any excuse to fire up the heated mattress! But you never read very far, do you? How many lines do you fight down before the urge to pen a note turns into a whole notebook page of poetic expressions?
After hours of what feels like total procrastination you say to yourself, “I’m not a bookworm at all, I’m a fraud!”—The day gets away from you and you shelve that book feeling defeated, and prepare to edit that poem for your Poetizer.
You’re a slithering writer who finds relevance to yourself in every line you read that mirrors something extra-terrestrial, or ultra-cosmological, or incredibly mundane… Doesn’t matter, you’re in it, you’re there! But that’s alright!
Lately I’ve been reading a wonderful book on writing, it’s called Writing Down the Bones by Natalie Goldberg, and for the first time I feel the permission to write without the guilt of finishing, and of order. Sometimes (most of the time) I’m too analytical and I forget that sometimes taking divergent paths is a way to grow.
The irony that I find these things in structured books could be a peculiarity to me but I don’t think it is. What’s most appealing to me about Goldberg’s book, so far, is that as opposed to other great books on the writing process (On Writing by Stephen King is a favorite of mine), is that Natalie speaks to the poetic process frequently.
I highly recommend. (*sips cold coffee*)
This is a New York City Punch, be careful because these delicious cocktails will have you swinging till you K.O. We call this one the Mayweather. The name was coined by my friend Melissa and I as we were enjoying a private Paint-and-Sip. The drink itself my husband invented for me on the fly at Houston’s at my 30th birthday party.
- Chambord Liqueur 1 oz.
- Disaronno Originale 2 oz.
- 100% Cranberry Juice 2 oz.
- Lime wedge
-In a Rocks Glass, pour over ice your Disoronno, your Chambord, and then your Cranberry Juice (cocktail works just fine and makes it even sweeter).
-Stir or Shake and add a splash of lime juice. The result is a sweet New York City punch that is a staple at every game night and party in our home.
**For an extra kick you, (or if you find this too sweet,) you can add an ounce of your favorite whiskey. We love our whiskey. Chambord is a vodka if you’d like to not mix too many liquors.
In the Summer we make a similar concoction we call the Hurricane Floyd. Because I want to get the measurements right for a recipe I’m going to do some extremely taxing experiments during these upcoming spring days.
About the Ingredients:
- Disaronno Originale is a type of amaretto—is 28% abv—an amber-colored liqueur with a characteristic almond taste, although it does not actually contain almonds.
- Chambord Liqueur is a 16.5% abv raspberry liqueur modelled after a liqueur produced in the Loire Valley of France during the late 17th century.