01 Object (new): a new object that held significance
My dear pal Hazey gave me a tattoo of the word “hag” near my elbow the other night. In my personal definition, hags are people who identify as women but who aren’t interested in being desirable. They exude beauty and confidence while at the same time appearing to reject the traditional cultural role as a sex object. Some people who I like to think of as hags include Patti Smith, Grace Jones, Michele Lamy, and Toody Cole.
02 Object (old): an old object that took on new/different kind of meaning
I have an older Mother of God vessel that I love. It has been kind of floating around my home and annoying me by never really fitting anywhere until I put it on my porch and stuck a candle in it and now every time I look at it I feel so satisfied. Go figure.
03 Utility: describe an occasion when you felt useful.
I feel most useful when I’m helping a loved one figure something out. Someone I love very much was sharing some work-related woes with me and when I shared with them my thoughts, it helped them get clarity. They were relieved and grateful and I felt like brilliant genius, so win-win.
04 Story: What’s the best story you heard?
I have been having some trouble falling asleep lately, and so I have taken to listening to the podcast “You Must Remember This” by Karina Longworth as I fall asleep. One of my favorite books is "Hollywood Babylon" by Kenneth Anger, and this is in the same vein.
05 Nature: An encounter with the natural world
Being alone on the water is important to my sanity and preservation of spirit. When I start to feel out of sorts, I like to take a kayak out onto Town Lake in Austin and zone out. It helps so much, even if just for an hour. There’s something about the energetic frequencies out there on the water; they’re softer, maybe, I dunno. I just really dig watching the ripples, noticing the light, and listening to the water. Also, I have taken to swimming laps and it’s one of the more mediative things I can do in public.
06 Minor secrets: Describe something you did in secret.
No way. Nice try.
07 Proportion: A specific moment that reminded you of the scale of the universe; that you are part of a greater whole
The closest I have ever come to understanding the concept of a higher power, or of being connected to the universe, occurred while I was giving birth to my child at home, in my kitchen, in water. This didn’t occur within the timeframe of this moon list; it happened almost nine years ago. But I don’t think I can answer this question any other way.
It’s hard to explain, but I felt this connection through total surrender to myself. It was an out-of-body experience. It was ecstatic.
Afterward, I told my midwife that I felt like I was coming down off acid. She looked at me as though I were the only one to ever describe this particular rite of passage that way. In retrospect, I can see that it’s a little bit of an unusual thing to say but hey, it was sincere.
To bring this into the last moon cycle, the other day I came across the Yoko Ono quote “My religion is to trust myself,” which is not exactly what I’m talking about, but I suppose it’s getting close.
08 Culture: A list of front-burner interests from the last month
- Book: Octavia Butler’s Parable of the Sower
- Snack: Celery and sardines forever
- Song: Arthur Cave singing “Deep Water”
- Panting: Silky Shoemaker’s portrait of Judy Garland
- New to me: Going topless at Barton Springs
09 What was missing last month?
Solitude and doing nothing much, outside, in an expanse, away from modernity. But that will soon be remedied by my annual trip to our family land in Colorado, where my partner, son, and I pitch tents in a field for a month and let ourselves lose our minds for a while.