The roar of a trusty steel steed, beneath a lead foot, masks the rolling thunder of a cascade, down a tear-stained cheek. And for but a split second, a mortally wounded, though upright warrior, considers swerving self and her metal mount, into the final oblivion. Parker, Dorothy that is, in all her glory and folly, calls on me to live another day. And so I resume, and re-revise, this life's resumé. ~Marcela: consumed enough to resume. August 18, 2018 Photographs and Writing All Rights Reserved. RESUME by Dorothy Parker: https://www.poetryfoundation.org/poems/44835/resume-56d224150522
I have been doing battle for and against others for so long, that I have been too weary to dedicate time and energy to that which is the core of who I am: A storyteller. I have been so preoccupied with the survival of self and others, that I may have hovered around a particular opportunity for too long without attempting a landing. But if you know me, truly know me, at all, you will know that I would rather put forth the significant energy required to try, knowing it may well be for nought, than live with never trying at all because it ‘might’ be too late, because I have fear and still suffer from imposter syndrome and engage in ridiculous self-talk like ‘why-would-they-consider-someone-like-me,’ and other bullshit. And as the next piece of corrugated cardboard, stop: revise: and as the next piece of re-bar enforced ‘culturally-appropriate’ cardboard and its inhabitants, threaten to box me further into the harm-laden world and systems I abhor, the ones which are sucking the health from my body and the soul from my being, the ones driving me further into a pit of financial instability, I look at my well-tattooed left arm, and remember, I am the girl who makes pigs fly! Lift-off must occur soonest, for detonation of the box has proven futile and I am out of explosives and expletives alike. I will beseech them, the unboxed, to please give me a shot, for I can do this. I want it more than most things. It is what I have been looking for without knowing exactly how and where I would find it, and without knowing them, but knowing them, because I found me a long time ago, and I know me. The box never has. The box never will. The box is not programmed to know, love, learn, nurture. The box is programmed to destroy. I am programmed to thwart its efforts.
Breathlessly and without pause the mouse chased the rabbit through the sandstone walls vying for first choice of place beneath the giant toadstool under which she would seek shelter from this her current storm. ~Marcela M. July 20, 2018 Photos and Writing: All rights Reserved
Sailing, with a Salt’n Pepper Sailor of off and on renown
I am shaken to the core by the clearest understanding,
of why we are what we are, to the other.
For one is hard pressed to overlook
the human shipwrecks we often leave in our wake,
in the pursuit of self-serving romance.
Floating, in a sea-water bubble-bath behind his true love, Jezebel
I am deeply aware of self and surroundings,
and laugh inwardly at the ironies of this life.
For one is hard pressed to deny one’s true nature
and relative un-importance,
in the middle of a salt-watery vastness.
Pounding, as the prow of his vessel meets the lumpy sea
I g(r)asp at the why, of THIS relationship,
as opposed to one of our culture’s norm and making.
For as affection must not be confused with ownership
so infidelity not with freedom,
and I languish no more in a union of others’ choosing.
Learning, the literal and metaphorical ropes alongside this(hu)man, in his element I am thunderstruck and blindsided,
with a deeply resonating perspective, of my own met and unmet needs.
For one is hard pressed to disregard the tutelage
of a life’s worth of evidence,
contradicting the common view.
Rolling, the hot silent tears down my cheeks
happy though wistful,
as I stand at the helm while the Sailor rests.
For one is hard pressed to spurn one’s calling to self and freedom
when it is so beautifully modeled,
by a Master of that art.
Counting, as the numbers on my personal odometer
climb toward an undetermined end point,
I remove the next vestige of a life never mine.
For as 3 years short of 60 register in my mind
so the realization that I owe me different,
than that which the box provides.
July 19, 2018
Photos and writing: All Rights Reserved.
This day has rolled around once more, and almost 5 decades, in this moment, feels more like 5 seconds, for I will always, and forever, miss you. Forty seven years are but a breath, a single thought, a single wistful tear rolling down my cheek. Forty seven years of reaching in to find you, forty seven years of letting you go. The contradiction of you/me, is ever present. This apple never fell far from your tree, just as I see in my own sapling, and for better or for worse, some bits are still hanging on. I get my rebel, my power, my wisdom, my intense and sometimes impulsive from you, as well as my ability to see the truth, and my stubborn-never-give-up. The fragility and dandelion fluff inside, the stuff that we both hid/e from the rest of the world, so that they cannot damage our oh-so-vulnerable human core(s), are also saplings of the gnarled old apple tree I see, the one that represents you in my visual mind, in my heart,in my very core. It never changes for me, this day, when we lost you. And I know, that it has never changed for her, you were the one and only love of her life. Time does not heal all wounds,it simply grows scar tissue over them which dulls the ache,sometimes, allows me to think about you with some clarity,remember the entirety of your being, and how you still,47 years later, teach me, guide me, help me keep my rebel on,with some measure of grace and dignity. So here we are, July 7th 2018, and I want to tell this story again. The evolving, always newly told story of a hero, my hero. The day never changes, but the story does, as I do. Through the never-ending process of growing up. He, my hero, had to be seen, by me, as human, before he could be my hero, for real for real. He was my first and biological father, Tomáš Mrnka. He was born in the country formerly known as Czechoslovakia on October 24th 1935, and died, under extremely curious circumstances, in a mine shaft in Stewart BC, on July 7th, 1971. It was 12 days before my 10th birthday. He was 36 years old, and when he died, everything I ever hoped for, and dreamed of, died with him. For a while… a very long while. I held him hostage on a pedestal of my own making for many, too many years after his death, and only ever thought about him in a haze of golden glory and undeserved persecution. I only ever told stories of his heroic actions: his undeserved imprisonment in the old country for a democratic cause, his valiant battle to get us, his children and wife, out of the clutches of communism following the Soviet invasion of our original home and native land, and into the country that he wanted more than anything to provide us a new life in. I knew this story so well I could recite it at the mere whisper of his name, and expound at length on his virtues and sacrifices; for his beloved country, for his beloved family. The parts I left out of the story, the human bits, are as important a contributor to the true nature of his hero-status as his me-created perfection. He was the first man of many, to hit me and tell me he loves me in the same moment. He did not do this because he was evil, he did it because that is how children were disciplined; it is what he learned in the environment and culture he grew up in. He was unfaithful to his beloved wife, my beloved mother, and considered somewhat of a Casanova. He was a catch: he had one of the few motorcycles in the country at the time, and a full set of leathers, a rebel with a chip on his shoulder, but he had a cause. He had attitude and the inimitable grin, wit and charm of Rhett Butler, and all the girls wanted him. My mother got him, and forgave him, over and over, to keep him. She had endless discord and conflict with her beloved mother because of him. He was not only imprisoned for voicing his political beliefs against the status quo, he was imprisoned for shooting a law officer. I tell you all of this not to be-smudge his memory; I tell you this to illustrate the full context of his humanity, he was so imperfect, so human, but still a hero not despite it, but because of it. He worked very hard to redeem himself when he brought us here, to make it right, to atone, to take responsibility for the things he did not do well, those things which caused harm and pain. I tell you this because we all have a dark side, a side that side which requires constant work and effort to keep in check, to make certain that it is not given more priority than the hero in all of us. The side that makes poor decisions based on fear, the side which is driven by the outside, all the world’s influences, rather than the inside, the core of our humanness, our hearts and souls, the piece of us housing the belief that we will get through anything, not necessarily with less suffering, but through, if we are diligent and ethical in our work. That piece, the hero in all of us, lets us know that love and abuse cannot co-exist in one environment, and is the piece which informs every act of kindness and compassion we have ever given freely because that is what gives us the most true happiness.It is the piece that would die for the people we love, and sometimes for those we don’t even know, but feel true human compassion and empathy for. That piece, is the one we must nurture, nourish, and encourage to grow and empower. I could not see my father, Tomaš Mrnka, as the authentic hero he was and is, until I could see the full extent of his humanity, without judgment, or the childish notions I carried about the perfection of a hero. I tell you this story because I have experience with imperfection and humanity, and because I miss my hero today, because even 47 years in,this day, is the day that informed the rest of my life, like no other. Back to you dad: Despite myself, my atheist and anti life after death beliefs and world view, I could not help but feel your presence, when my own off-shoot and I visited the places from which I have some of my strongest and fondest memories of you in 2014; Karlovy Vary, Boží Dar, Plzeň It was one of those trips, the journey of a lifetime with your widow, my mother Marcella (with two L's ;) and my son, your grandson Thomas. We told him stories about you that he has likely heard a thousand times before, but it was different, for you had walked these streets that we were walking, you held my mother’s hand there, you held mine, my big brother Tom's. You came back to life for us in moments of memory so vivid that they caught our breath, and we all got to know you, and ourselves, a little better than we did in the days, the moments prior. And then 2015: I waited 44 years to go back, to the places we had you last. The place we loved so very much. It was so wild then, so gloriously out there in the mountains between BC and Alaska, it still was 3 years ago. Just like you, just like me. Rest in peace my beloved dad, and know that the lessons of your life, your imperfect self, and your true heroism, have followed me, taught me, led me, often astray, but always back, to the true hero inside me. Forty seven years ago, my life and world changed in a way that I spent too many years trying to numb, to feel, to figure out, to forget, to remember; and 47 years later I come full circle to face my own imperfection and humanity, in a way more painfully profound, than ever here-to-fore. Thank you for the continuing lessons. We have done well. And although my dark side comes out to play and wreak havoc in my heart and life periodically, I believe that my hero generally triumphs in the end. I miss your person every day, but you live on, in me, every second. Always yours, and with all the flawed humanity I have, ~Marcela. July 07, 2018. Writing and photos: All Rights Reserved.
Farewell Mr. Bourdain, I will always be grateful to you for knowing more about me, because I watched you, saw you, and I will miss your (hu)manity, beyond mere words.
If you watched Anthony Bourdain, read any of his words, listened to the conversations he had with other Rock’n Roll high-powered folks and the everyday humans he engaged with in the course of his work, and you still failed to see, hear, the angst, the vulnerability, beneath the unfiltered, the Rock’n Roll, you were not paying attention.
Surface level thinking, instant fucking everything, generalizations, assumptions, falsely drawn conclusions, few critical brains, and much too much attention to all things fucking woo-woo, are the scourge of our culture.
I’m sorry for the profound loss everyone who loved you is feeling in this moment, I’m so very sorry.
Image: Google search – Writing: All Rights Reserved.
Remnants Like an old flag in the wind, tattered remnants of fear, flap relentlessly, in the recesses of my heart and mind; denounce and decry my worthiness of, the unorthodox life I crave. Whispers the fearless wild-child inside, “…burn the flag woman, burn the flag.” ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ With thoughts of my maternal grandmother, Žofie Schlosser Ševčíková, June 06, 1911 – November 17, 1995. She was inordinately dignified and quite literally worked her fingers to the bone for my mother and her. She did it while standing up to, and then leaving (unheard of at that time), a violently abusive, alcoholic husband. She did it during a time in war-torn Eastern Europe most of us cannot fathom, no matter how many history books we profess to have read. She was profoundly gifted in languages,and well-read. She toiled with her tiny body and life-worn hands,in a way we, of more recent generations cannot know. One of the things I remember most about her is the importance to her, of quality, in everything. And I wonder, knowing what I know about the drudgery, the losses, the sacrifices that were the bulk of her life, I wonder, given the opportunity to ask her about what she would have done differently, had she the chance to be anyone,to do anything,she desired,what that would have been. I am anxious this day,and she came to my mind. She was born 107 years ago. A mere blip on the radar of our Universe, not known to most, but remembered well, by me and my mama,her daughter, this day. ~Marcela: tattered in the process of (more, always more,) unfurling. Writing: All Rights Reserved / Image: Google Search June 06, 2018