Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Living in Low Lighting/Thoughts of Home(lessness)

Living In Low Lighting: Thoughts of Home(lessness)
I cracked a tooth last year. I cracked it and it’s just gone. I couldn’t get it fixed,  because…I couldn’t make it out of the house (but insurance would have damn sure been an incentive). I just…couldn’t make myself leave. And now, living in a homeless shelter away from those people and places that make Home I spend a lot of time looking at myself, but only in low and dusky lighting where the image myself is softer with three weeks from my 39th birthday things are less stark in the dusk, dimmer than pain and devoid of the cruelty of the sun’s truth which in its truth  deplores dishonesty. The low lighting is in my mind because now I must leave home because it’s where I live, homeless and among strangers.

Winter is no longer coming; it is here at my not home where time is passing slowly and in a place I hope for the light to end sooner since that means I am closer to sleep when I don’t have to see my broken tooth and I don’t feel its bite. When you find yourself washed into the rapids, cold and alone there’s first the belief that someone beloved, some friend or even an interested compassionate stranger will soon fish you out. But something prevents this from happening as I’ve seen. 

This isn’t only my story but the story of so many other  women I’ve met in this six months of dizzy hell.

My first shock was that I wasn’t surrounded by dirty women in black trashbags who screamed incoherently and darkly within their own cautiously lit private abodes of the mind: in fact, probably 90% of the women with whom I’ve shared this homeless space are middle class. Suburban housewives, former soccer moms, women who work jobs, often two or more but still unable to afford housing. There are plenty of women who are down and out drug addicted and alcoholic or who suffer from some form of debilitating mental illness that is a familiar codependent in their solitary drifting lives. But it’s these forgotten women who make up the working poor, not layabouts, just women trying to make it and failing because the system is rigged against them.

I’m here because I suffered a nervous breakdown, a bipolar episode that sent me reeling from depression and manias stealing my ability to work, to pay bills, to care for myself sending me down the rapids of waste and want to eviction and to…this place.

 The dark place that is always poorly lit because no one cares enough to light the dark.
Of course the low lighting is merely nature because even God’s winter sky hides the sun 
It’s like waking up to graded homework with an F but every single day. Every day. The truth that no one will tell you is that if you feel alone it is because you are alone.

The truth casts a certain beautyl in its frightfulness. And it is invisible to all those who are not stripped down to the very aloneness made by God himself. You are naked and alone, a pavement dweller with only your own self for company: this is the truth that all you are is contained within flesh and viscera and to utilize its possibilities one has to come to the understanding of that Self: you are nothing except that which you were made, a soul.

Nighttimes are long. You spend the day waiting for night and quiet and at the end of the day there is no sleep.

Into this life we come alone
to be fed upon myth of kin and kith and hearth and home
tis naught but a tale grown folk ought be too canny than belief
for still art thou alone comest daytime's eve
tis no riddle
nor glass darkly
if you would but see


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