Messier 71:  a globular cluster in the northern constellation Sagitta that spans 13 light years.

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

Last night I had a dream I was sitting at a potter’s wheel. Each time, when I would drift with the feeling into thoughts my pot would crack and it repeated again and again. I think it meant that attention is our strength—where you direct it is where you’ll grow and flourish.

*3.27.21


Yesterday we had friends over and we shared food, drinks, and smoke. Some of us played DnD and some of us were painting. All of us were in a state of communion, the weather was on our side and the night was perpetually young.

We ended the day with Scrabble. Everyone decided that they’d be best suited to face me in teams. I was not allowed to use a dictionary and they all got bonus points. I still won. 🙂

Paige Six | 2021

 

Today a piece of my heart is sewn shut, I close the door on a home that was once mine and mine alone. The only home I’ve ever owned like that. I collect whatever art I did not leave on the walls and I lock the door for good on whatever I leave behind in it.

This home held my grandmother’s refrigerator, my few intimate moments with my mother in her later life, my independence. My first ever moves towards fulfilling a life that I wanted took place in this home. My first ever mile run, my routines in general were formed here. I had moments with my daughter that were hard and that were tender. 

I collect from this place all the original art that ever meant anything to me. I collect my red astronaut concepts, the planets I painted as murals on the wall I say a goodbye to. My rainbow kitchen, and the love affairs that were shared on my purple sofa.

I say goodbye to paint on the floor. I say good bye to dishes washed by hand. To my daughter’s colorful room covered in Coro Coro advertisements and posters. The curtains hanging where doors belong. To pipes that burst and projects that challenge me to grow as an adult.

To dangerous neighbors and a neighborhood so dirty that the weeds decorate the cracked pavement with their colors because no amount of oppressions can stop the world from reclaiming her identity as an unyielding artist.

I say good bye to the home where I rolled my first joint and quit my last pack of cigarettes. I say good bye to the place where my childhood sweetheart and I drank a full bottle of red and bottle of white, then danced in the kitchen in refrigerator light before Taylor Swift ever published such romanticisms as a song, strangling the memory for so many young poets.

I say good bye to my first garden, and the one sun flower that bloomed because the soil was so dirty and the cars that parked in front of my house kept rolling over it.

I say good bye to being 10 minutes from the heart of New York City on a bus ride. I say good bye to swamp summers near the airport taking photos of the take-offs against neon globalized sunsets. I say good riddance to a trailer park, and I’ll miss you to a shanty trailer who with all of its might kept me and my child safe from elements, people, eyes, and loved us even before I knew how to love it back.

So sweetly I wish to say, now;

thank you so much, and good bye.

Paige Six | 2021

I’m not sure what to write here. I’ll probably come back and write more later, or add another post. I hate feeling pressured to write beautiful prose every time an event’s anniversary rolls around. The truth is, while there is an abundance of poetry to share about the way my life has unfolded into the arms of a strong man who holds me together like glue; that the best way I could describe what it feels like to live this life of fortune is to simply say that I know now I’m one of the lucky ones.

I didn’t plan on ever getting married. But I’m glad I had.

My wedding was one of the most nerve-racking experiences of my life. But my marriage has been one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. Chuck really is my better half. And he loves me the way I deserve to be loved. Who could ask for more? It’s maybe more than one person deserves. I’d be lying if I told you that it didn’t feel that way some times.

If I could go back in time, and love him longer, I would.

Here’s to a long and full life, together…

Photo: Paige Six | 2018

Recently, I’ve really been taking it easy with Poetizer. Focusing a bit more on building an audience on All Poetry, and to take some time to do some novel reading in between. However, last night I decided to revive an old poem there, (and here) with some new formatting and design implements.

It really paid off, because I’m neck and neck for the top poem of the day… I could take the top spot any minute. It’s exciting tbph! (currently I rank 35% more unique comments and only 1.07% less likes sooo… b:)

I haven’t had this much success on Poetizer in well over a year. It feels nice to get such a warm reception again.

I really do love writing poetry. And *furloughed in particular is a special piece that I think is a cut above so much of what I’ve shared up until this point.

Thanks for sharing in my joy. I hope you’re well. (:

-Paige

Paige Six | 2/25/21

Yesterday was a snow day. What I like about snow days is how the world halts so that you and your family can focus on what needs to be taken care of at home. There’s something really special about everyone working together to shovel, cook, and play.

We took a time out from the driveway to build a small snowman and to have regular intervals of snowball fights. It snowed 35 inches over by us, the first big snowfall of the year and the biggest my daughter can ever remember seeing. Because school is virtual these days they did not have a snow day but I pulled her out early to enjoy the weather. Had I not she’d have maybe 2 hours to play before it gets dark and in my opinion that’s not enough. She didn’t want to come inside by the end of it.

It was a good day.

Paige Six | 2.3.21

In ten minutes my mother would have been 52 years old. I’ve made chocolate pudding and tomorrow I’ll make a cake. I’ll celebrate her life quietly, reflect on photographs, and read the birthday and Christmas cards she’s given me over the years.

Since her death I’ve let a lot go to waste in my life and in myself. This is a fact. However, I’ve learned how valuable my family is and I cherish the time I have with them more than the allure of money and accomplishments.

I don’t believe in heaven, but that doesn’t mean I know what happens after. It means I haven’t been convinced. My mother died a year (exactly) prior to her final death and she told me she saw nothing. She thought that was really fucked up, having gone her whole life believing every touched by an angel type story. It is fucked up.

It was fucked up. She died afraid to die. I would have wanted better for her. I would have wanted for her the peace that comes with old age. She didn’t want to die at 50. She was murdered. I am forever haunted by the circumstances and the facts.

These birthdays seem to get harder every year. I miss her greatly. I love her dearly.

I’m so sorry.

Photographer: Paige Six

I watched Grave of the Fireflies this morning and hate how I can’t suspend my belief enough to imagine there’s a life after death. I’m stuck on how depressing and terrible the life the main character lived was, and no reassurance of heaven from any book or mouth can quell the nausea. Maybe I’ve spent too many years in foster care to enjoy these kinds of films, despite how much I truly appreciate them.

I think about the things we carry, the way Seita carried his mother’s ashes and his father’s photograph only to lose them, to die in squalor with nothing more than a tin of his sister’s ashes on his person. To live a lonely life where possessions are truly meaningless in comparison to the loss. Seita was berated by disdain from his family and at large society since the day his mother passed on throughout the film. It was hard to watch.

I think about what I carry with me. My mother wrote me a beautiful card that I’d thought I’d lost. In it she told me how truly happy she was that I was near her. Yet while she was still alive I saw her infrequently, despite the short distance. I know this was because of her addiction, but it was also because I had grown used to being alone. Now I am alone. When I found the card preserved perfectly in a notebook sleeve I broke down and cried from relief. However upon reading, the card did little more than riddle me with guilt.

Still, like her ashes I can’t ever imagine leaving it behind. For all the faults of my mother’s choices, and for all the luxury she discarded in her drug addiction, there’s still a hole where her presence filled in my heart. I carry with me the burden, the memory, and her ashes. I regret that she never separated herself from the things that tore her down. I am possessed by unseasonable rage that our family chose their own luxuries and turned blind eyes while she disintegrated, and I wish I had gotten my act together sooner joined the military and got her the hell out of there. I have so many regrets.

What I don’t regret is being there. Which when I’d first came back to that old town I thought I would. Life has a funny way of always making me eat my own words. I had quiet, I had fire flies to catch before they disappear, as did my daughter. I had my own home, I had holidays with my mother, I had a career that made me happy and the freedom to explore while my mother had time at home with her granddaughter. I’m sure if we could go back there would be things we’d both change, but there is no going back and I cherish the good parts that I did grab. I cherish even more the good parts that came upon me by way of fortune, like having the mother I had. So many people lose their warmth in the rapture of addiction and she never did. In a world where I had no one my mother was a beacon to call me home and hold me up. She prevented me from ever spiraling out of control and for that I am a better woman. She made me a better woman.


I don’t know what fate and circumstance will allow me to further embark upon down the road. I don’t know if I’ll live to see my daughter turn 30 as my mother did not. I do not know if I’ll ever be old. If I am given the gift of a comfortable life I am sure I’ll never forget what it was like to be a beggar. I’ll surely judge less harshly, I’ll attempt to tread more humbly. And of course I’ll attempt to become a better mother with every day, and hope my daughter can forgive me for my faults as I have learned to forgive my own mother for hers.

Paige Six | January 12, 2021

Photographer: Paige Six

At the wake of 2021 I would like to share with you one of my favorite poems. It’s helped me to reflect upon my life and motivations time and time again since the young age of 18 when a stranger shared it with me. I hope that as you continue to grow, as you learn to form better habits, and as you take time each new year to reflect on your life that you find this poem an appropriate companion piece. Personally I find it rings true in 2021 as ever it did in 2008, as ever it did in 1927 when it was written.

Desiderata: Words for Life by Max Enhrmann:

Go placidly amid the noise and haste,
and remember what peace there may be in silence.
As far as possible without surrender
be on good terms with all persons.
Speak your truth quietly and clearly;
and listen to others,
even the dull and the ignorant;
they too have their story.

Avoid loud and aggressive persons,
they are vexations to the spirit.
If you compare yourself with others,
you may become vain and bitter;
for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself.
Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans.

Keep interested in your own career, however humble;
it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.
Exercise caution in your business affairs;
for the world is full of trickery.
But let this not blind you to what virtue there is;
many persons strive for high ideals;
and everywhere life is full of heroism.

Be yourself.
Especially, do not feign affection.
Neither be cynical about love;
for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment
it is as perennial as the grass.

Take kindly the counsel of the years,
gracefully surrendering the things of youth.
Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune.
But do not distress yourself with dark imaginings.
Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness.
Beyond a wholesome discipline,
be gentle with yourself.

You are a child of the universe,
no less than the trees and the stars;
you have a right to be here.
And whether or not it is clear to you,
no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.

Therefore be at peace with God,
whatever you conceive Him to be,
and whatever your labors and aspirations,
in the noisy confusion of life keep peace with your soul.

With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams,
it is still a beautiful world.
Be cheerful.
Strive to be happy.

Happy New Year!

Paige Six | January 3, 2021

3.10.2019 | Photographer: Gina Harkins

After nearly 2 years I finally received my entire collection of wedding photographs! Chuck and I are thrilled with how they came out, and since we had 3 photographers (all of them thoughtful gifts), we have a stunning variety to chose from to print for an album.

I’m a little bit outraged by the cost of a wedding album via Shutterfly, but I guess that’s just something the hubby and I are going to have to save up for if we want the top-of-the-line make and model. *Which we do!

I really wish I’d received these photos sooner, only because I never got a chance to show them to my mother. I did have a few candid and side profile shots, which I did send her, but our main portraits were never seen by her eyes. Which is particularly solemn for me as these photos are the only professional shots of her with all of her children.

The whole wedding we planned in 3 weeks, and we handmade everything we could including the cake. I’d never made a tiered cake before and neither had my husband, but it was a great team experience and we ultimately had a worthwhile time learning how to create and decorate the pastry. Our colors were cardinal, cream, and navy (that’s Wedding for red, white and blue) so we made a red velvet cake, covered in butter cream rosettes, and wrapped in a navy ribbon embellished with pearl pins to keep it in place.

In retrospect having been able to have my mother be present at my wedding was one of the last and most meaningful gifts the universe and all of serendipity could have given me while she was alive. So thank you serendipity. Had you asked me just a month before that day I’d have told you I was never getting married. I told my now husband as much just a month before, honestly! Life has a way of making me eat my own words. I’ve learned to appreciate the irony, I’m very bad at knowing what I want. I’ve wasted nearly every wish on every star or coin thrown into a wishing well.

If you’d like to know what I wish now; wish I’d slowed down more and gotten more photographs with my mother, with my daughter, and with my whole family (new and old). Aside from not doing my own hair that day, it’s my only regret. If you want my advice make sure you make the most of those photographs. Well, that and don’t let anyone rush you if you’re late to go down the aisle but your hair isn’t perfect!

Here are a few of my favorite shots from the big day:

Paige Six | 12.14.2020