harold_maude's journal


# 40427

Reflections of perfect light
running down the sky
kissing my face
ancient tears
that never dry.

The pictures form
peice by peice
and talk to me
telling me the secrets
of the universe.

The children wander
round and round
their eyes covered
their ears bound
wondering why
they hear no sound.

Listening to noise
that blocks out light
makes them nervous
and quite alone.

The answer is simple
just pull back your hands
count to 10
and open your eyes.

Like many other puzzles
that float and dance
the answer is there
it waits for you
it wants to take you
far, far away
changing you along the way.

So simple
so simple
and you'll be free.
Just follow the stream
and trust it's hand
it's waiting
just outside
of no man's land

you'll find it
and when you do
you'll know
you'll see
and then you'll find thoes wings
sliver glazed
powerful wings.

Learning the art of being focused

# 40425

It's monday morning and the day seems brighter somehow.
It's possibly because someone else here saw what I've been dealing with first hand and like other things that I've faced before where at first I was the only person who saw them and everyone else here said I was completely nuts and being rediculous, this person came face to face with what I've been dealing with, and now, I'm no longer alone in this.

That's a wonderful feeling. Having someone validate what you know is real.
We are setting about a very special task. We are making the common area of the house completely void of any comforts that we have brought to the house and have generously put into the common area for everyone to enjoy.
This person that has been a problem here has also used these things.
Like the t.v.
And the movies.

Today, after work, we are going to remove them from the common area and bring them down here.
They will no longer be avaible to be used at will.

This person who came out here because he needs what the farm has, not us, but the farm, will have to begin to find someway to fill his days other than doing what he has been doing, which is watching t.v.

If he wants t.v., he will have to go out and buy one, either that or invade one of the other people's rooms, who haven't had an extended taste of the crap I have.

It's very peaceful out here. And it will again be free of stress.
I'm going to have a space in this very large basement for my studio, and that's awesome.
Somthing I've needed for a very long time.

And if I'm not mistaken, this person will either go completely nuts from the lack of noise that he says he has to have around him or he will leave, or change.

He was brought out here because there are things that need to change in his life, and he has been filling his life with so much noise that it hasn't been happening.
Now it will.

And for that I am truely happy this morning.


# 40418

The last of last night and most of the day have been the most relaxing I've known in a month.

It took all of 5 minuets after this person walks in the house for me to start to panic.
He goes upstairs, and I'm listening, and I know he's comming back down.
I run for the basement door.

This is insane. I'm terrified of any encounter with this person at all now.
And I shouldn't be.
I shouldn't have to be.

I talked to the guy who brought him here and gave him the heads up, and he said he would talk to this guy, and so we will see what happens.

I hope things change. It is my hope that the time remaining at this farm will be different.
I'm giving all of this the benefit of the doubt, simply because change for any person is possible.

I was a pretty needy person at one time in my life, but I grew up in the important ways, while still trying to retain the part of me that loves to play.

I hope that it gets better. I thought about checking myself in to someplace just to get a way in the mean time yesterday.
That's an option if shit doesn't change.
Before I go sideways again.

side note here, we were suppose to all get together to do fall cleaning, and since we all had the day off, this was suppose to be the day we had all decited on that would be workable, and with all of working it would take just a couple of hours to get it done.
Two of the people decited to go off and do something else for the day.
I got some stuff done, but I'm beyond wiped out so I could only do so much.
I was willing to get this shit done.
But seems that in the end, like everything else I come across, it comes down to me to get it done.

I've got a headache starting now, and have to sneak back up and make sure he isn't up there so I can get what I need and get back down here fast.

Spring, hurry up and get here. I really don't want to be ready to be locked up by then.

Long day

# 40393

This day has been one of the longest days I can remember in a while.
I'm glad it's almost over. It's been one of thoes days where the idea of doing bodily harm in mass quanity has been something I've considered all day.

That's not like me. Not for a long, long time. It used to be that there was always rage under the surface.
And the journey to be free of that and live peacefully has been a long one.
A hard one, but so worth it.

This day started much like most days. The alarm went off.
And I hurried upstairs to use the bathroom and get down here before the roommate that drives me nuts came down stairs.
I got down here just in time.
He turns on the t.v. I can hear it. That's something he does alot.
Turn on the t.v. to watch the daily crap that he eats everyday.
Then I hear the coffe grinder and the coffee pot and I know he's waiting.

He waits for me to come up so he can have morning converstaion.
I don't want morning conversation with this person.
I don't want afternoon conversation.
Or even evening conversation.
I want him to have a life that doesn't include invading my space at will.
Making major assumptions that it's perfectly fine to talk to me at great length about every detail about every little thing he has done or wants to do with what ever here in the house.
I've told him that I can feel everything he is feeling emotionally and it drains me.
He didn't get it.

What the fuck is not to get.

He backs off for about 2 days and starts invading my space again.
Like this moron believes that 2 days will be enough of his absence in my life.
That's kind of like not cleaning dog shit off your shoes and then walking around the house and getting into bed with shit covered shoes.

Then is guy decided this morning that he would put the baby kittens outside inspite of telling him she doesn't have enough body fat yet to survive outside.
This fucker is dense.

I bring the kittens back in and put them down stairs. I'm pissed beyond words at this point.
I take a shower.
And I come out and start brushing my hair.
He is sitting in the chair next to the one I normally sit in to paint.
I go to the front room. He follows me. I go back to the kitchen...and it starts.
He starts talking. I blow up. Really blow up. I tell him he's in my space.
He says that he isn't.
I tell him that I'm moving all my art stuff down stairs. I tell him that I know he needs to be here at the farm. And I can accept that but I need space.
The arguments that come out of his mouth start. I tell him to shut up.
This fucker keeps going.
I then tell him that I'm moving my art stuff down stairs out of the common area, and that the only time I will come upstairs is to eat, shit and shower.

Then this moron says "I don't think that's healthy"
I tell him as I leave "I don't fucking care"

Somewhere in the mist of all this I tell him that if I had the money I would move out, but since that's not possible and so that everyone can live here in peace, I'm moving my studio downstairs.

I've been telling this jerk that he drains me of all energy because he's such a needy person.
He must be completely deaf. He doesn't fucking get it.
I'm talking to the guy that invited this asshole to move in here and tell him that if this guy isn't gone soon, then I'm fucking moving out come spring.

The only reason it's not house hunting season now is because winter is comming and moving durring the winter is a real bitch.
I'll wait till spring and then I'm gone.

I tried to tell this fucker who doesn't listen that this place, I should have clairfied that didn't include me being the emotional dumping ground, would give him what he needed, not nessiarly what he wanted.

He doesn't listen. I don't know how much more clear I can be.
Without what happened this morning being the only thing that he responds to.

It fucking reminds me of my ex-husband. I had to scream to be heard and listened to, maybe.
If it interested him.

Fuck that shit. Fuck it completely.

No human on the planet should have to scream to be heard.
That's rediculous.
That's obsene.
That's just not right. No matter what it is, a person who needs to say something, shouldn't have to scream to be heard.

When I was driving out of the driveway, I was shaking so hard that I could barely see.
All I could think of was getting some razor blades and cutting the surface of my arms, not enough to do permanet damage but just enough to tone things down.
Turn them down, so I could calm down enough to stop the red that was comming.

I've seen red only a couple of times in my life. Both times I knew only one thing: I wanted to dismemeber something with my bare hands.
Thankfully, both times I have managed to halt the process and back down.
This time however, I was so close that it scared me.
I got lost trying to find my way to work.

It took me two hours to be able to regain my focus enough to be able to really keep my mind on what I was doing at work.
I couldn't do anything with the rage that was on the verge of going red most of the day.
Except fight to keep my mind on work.

Tonight I came home dreading finding the fucker's car in the drive way.
It wasn't there.
Thank God it wasn't there. I don't know what I would have done if it had been there.
Go over the edge completely, maybe?

He left a note saying he was going fishing.
I hope he figures out things and makes one of two decisions.
Either one would be fine.

He can either figure out that I don't want to talk to him, and I don't need to talk to him.
He doesn't need to talk to me expept to maybe say hello.
That's fine with me.
He needs to figure out alone this same line that he needs to do his own work on his emotions himself.
And he needs to get something else going on in his life besides spending all day here at the house doing basicly nothing but cleaning and watching that idot box.
The cleaning I don't mind.
If that floats your boat, then fly at it.
What ever.

But, I don't want or need to hear every fucking detail about everything you cleaned.
This guy could make anyone go nuts.
Really, really nuts.

If that doesn't take hold, he better come back with the news that he's looking for another place to live.

Either one is fine. I don't care.

I just can't keep being on my constant gard against this guy.
I can't live like that.
I won't touch any thing of that belongs to this guy.
My gut keeps telling me, no, don't take anything from him, don't touch any of his shit.
Leave him alone completely.
It has since the second day this fucker walked into this house.

I am not at peace right now. I'm somewhat clamer than I was most of the day, which I'm thankful for.

I'm not an anti-social person. I do like to visit with people and bulshit with people and have conversations with people.
But the people who I like to do that with have a life, and I know when they leave, that I will see them again, and it's always been really good to have that in my life.

But I'm also a person who needs quiet. I need it so that I can focus and let it all go.
I need quiet sometimes because I'm so exausted that there is quite literally nothing left to give anyone.
I don't mind spending some of the quiet time with someone who I love being with.
That seems to make that quiet time more restful.
It's good. And I truely hope with all my heart that when those same people spend some of their quiet with me, that they will leave more rested.
I really do hope that.

I've been writing alot more here lately because it's been the only place that I can come to these days and know that I can think a whole thought without fearing that someone who I don't want to be in that place with me will come down the stairs or open the door and start asking me all kinds of things.

Like they need my permission to do what ever. I'm not anyone who lives in this house's mother.
I am the same as the rest of the people that live here, the only difference is that I'm female and the rest of them are male.
Yes, I live in a house with 4 men. I normally prefer the company of men because they generally forget I'm there and I can go about my life with the occasional brief conversation that takes place here and there,
the only exception to that has been the one guy who drinks every night to tone down the arguments that go on in his head.
Then I feel like a bartender who is subject to all the drunks that come into the bar and unload their unhappy life and how bad their wife is in bed, and how they wish they could have a peice of that young thing walking around serving drinks.

That is something that I've lived with simply because this guy is a friend who I know would never do anything to hurt me.
He respects me, and that's enough for me. I can take it to the bank.

I don't have to protect myself against this guy at all.
And even after all night converstaions that have gone in crazy circles I never walk away feeling drained, or like I'm being sophocated.

Outside of that, this place has been wonderful.
I could observe from a distant place this world of guys who have become my brothers over time.
I love these guys. They get into all kinds of crazy and very funny shit and I just sit back and laugh my ass off.
It's hysterical to watch these guys throw shit at each other.
And it's like I don't exist. I'm part of the wall and I get to watch this awsome thing going on.

I love being there. They are part of my family by choice.

Then, this moron moves in. Everyone is never home much anymore.
Except him.
It's as though this farm is trying to get him alone so that what ever this person is truely in need of the farm can begin to do.
This place is a healing place. It draws who it will, and thoes that are not wanted here by this place, soon leave.
It's not the people here who are suppose to do the healing, it's the land that does.

And I get the feeling that this guy needs to take long walks in the woods on this place, and find a place that's quiet and just listen for a while.
And do that lots. And then come back and write or paint about it.
He says he's an artist. I've seen his stuff. He believes it's worth alot of money. It isn't. It's not worth anymore than just a marker of when he did it. And in that it is worth something.
Just not the money part.

He won't do art now. He won't do it because he doesn't have his oils here.
He has money. If it's that important he could go out and buy paint.
But all he wants to do is talk and watch the idot box.

I need to spend sometime trying to focus. I've unloaded here.
That's enough.
I have to rise above all of this, and not let it eat me alive.
I think moving my studio down here is the only thing that makes alot of sense right now.

I think I need a good long cry to relieve all the stress.
It seems to do the trick sometimes.
I hope so.
I need to be rid of this stress.
And I need that now..


# 40383

I can feel the sound in my eyes.
I can taste the color in my ears
and smell distant thoughts
things dripping down
the insides of heads
that lay resting
on old pillows.

Things that come up
in drifting conversations
that pass the time
between us
slow and remembering
of what brought us here
to this place.

My transparent shadow
is like clay that shifts
with your words and makes
questions of things
that pass me by
like cars destine to crash
against some hardended wall
disinigrating concrete.

wait one more strand
of liquid time
and see the stars colide
think this is amazing
and ponder why.

What is it that makes
even the most brilliant soul
stop in mid sentance
to watch the geese flying over head?

Is it fancy or the want
of where we belong
that makes us stare?

I can feel the sound
of a million breaths
balance on my skin
and taste their emotions
hiding in the dark hollows
where no one goes.

It's so deafening
so still
that it hurts
and it grows
slips down the rails
of dying trees
parts before my eyes
just so I can see

In the waiting
these things go
and come
one by one.

Life lessons 101 or getting to know myself

?% | 1

# 40373

It's Novemember 11 and on this morning I find myself thinking about something I read and posted
to about discontent.

Discontent. That's like disease only the state of contentment is sick.
In need of attention and in need of doing something that a person has been doing which led them to
this place.

The state of good contentment starts with where you live, so to speak. Not the town or city, but with
That's the first and formost thing you have to face everyday, and if you are unhappy with you,
what ever the reason, the best place to make change that will change the world is with you.

A few years back I left everything I knew and threw caution to the wind and set out upon a very
long and still continuing journey of finding out what I was made of and who I was.
The first thing I discovered was this, that unless you have a financial safty net you will be
immeadtely homeless.
And unless your survival skills are really well tuned, you will come face to face with the reality
that what you know about survival in a real situation is probably very little.
Unless you were a boy scout and maybe a girl scout, but I don't think they teach girl scouts
how to make a camp with next to nothing.

If you do have any money it will go fast. You find that the idea of being out there is no so easy in
the real as it is in the obsession with it while your living in a house that has things like toilet paper and
a refigerator with food in it.
And the bed thing, well, alot of people take their beds for granted.
Try this one on, sleeping sitting up while to trying to keep from freezing to death. Literally.
Even if you have heavy blankets, unless you have any clue as to how to trap heat inside thoes blankets
so you can get some sleep, you are screwed.

Luckily I had someone with me that showed me how to do that. He lived in conditions very close
to being homeless for most of his life.
A drafty house and his room was little more than a frame with drywall and no heat, and a window.
The family source of heat was a wood stove located in one of the main rooms.
His room was a partially finished extra room that was added and then never got finished due to
lack of money on the part of his parents.

He had skills that he passed on to me. He taught me how to cover the heat vents in the car and then
trap as much heat as you can and then wrap thoes warm toasty blankets tight around you, kind of
like being a living mummy, and then it's ok for a while to sleep.
That is if you can sleep.
If you haven't eaten alot of food, because most of the money you have goes to buy gas money for your car,
I had at least that going for me,
the lack of food will keep you awake. At least at first.
Then as days wear on, you get to the point where you loose your appitie and just get really weird
in the head as your body is burning your stores of fat and muscle.
The muscle goes first here. The fat is stored for starvation mode.
The body won't let you use that first.
That's why most diets out there are designed to fail. They put you in this weird mode, your body
thinks it's starving because there is no common sense to what your doing, and will burn more muscle
than fat.
So it looks like your loosing weight, but your actually causing damage to the muscles in your body.

Anyway, everything goes basic. Very fast. And if you can't find a job due to the fact that if you leave
the town where you grew up the town you end up in you don't know anybody.
So being the good swift thinking person that I am, what do I do but go to the serivice help agencies
to get help.
There are shelters. But have you ever been in one of thoes places?
The men's shelter here in this town reminds me of a prision.
This is what you get when you go to one of thoes places: 2 meals. A space with a cot in a room full of
people you don't know, and you don't sleep because you have no clue if these are insane people who
have been out there so long that they would steal what little you do have because that's a survial
technique out on the street.
Or if they are people who still have a sense of honor about them.

There is a code of eithics among the street people that most people have no idea about.
Stealing other people's shit is a big no no. That kind of thing will most definitely be reason enough
to find yourself at the end of a really good ass kicking.

You find out who knows what, and the best place to go for more than just two meals.

Then if you are in a shelter, here are a couple of things to remember: you only get so many days there.
In some cities it's one week. In other's it's as much as up to a month.
But that isn't much time to get anything together.
The other thing to remember is this, at 7 am you are kicked out the door and can't get back inside
until just after 5, just in time to shower and get ready to eat.
Then you have a cerfew that says you have to be in your bed by a certian time.
They don't tolorate much in thoes places.
If you don't make it past the curfew, your outta luck for the night, and better find a shelter from
the weather.
The problem is that if you have any stuff on the inside, like clothes, they are just sitting there.
And they can and do disapear.

We opted for staying in the car. It was less scary.
With that choice came this set of problems. Keeping gas in the car was one, and the other was finding
a place where the cops wouldn't harrass you.
A safe place to be so that you won't get arrested for vagerancy.

Durring the day it isn't so bad. People park their cars in public places and go to work. It's easy
to find some place to park and at least try to figure things out.

Another crucial point to remember is this, carry your social security card with you.
Do not put it in storage.
This is vital. Because no one will talk to you about work without it, unless you are able to do
alot of odd jobs or have something to sell and go door to door.
I had my portfolio and sold peices extreemly cheap so we could stay warm and eat.

Then there are the agencies designed to help the homeless. They are run mostly by people who
have no clue as to what it's actually like to try to survive day to day.
They start out with a notion that it's important to give back so they go to work in places
designed to help people.
And the sheer numbers of people in need are staggering.
And after a while they get burned out and get very cynical about the homeless.
You find yourself becomming a case number.
Your humanity, and dignity are lost in the bowls of the social service agency and all it's
different features.

Two months after leaving the town I grew up in I had to have emergancy surgery. It was life threatening.
I had to either go to the hospital or die.
That was my two choices. There was no inbetween, like crashing your back where you can
just stop for a while and let it heal, or even a broken leg, which you can set yourself, but
that's a bitch because if you don't have the knowledge or the tools you are basicly in a position
of not moving.
Anyway, I drove me to the hospital. I was in seering pain, it was Christmas night. I kid you not.
The first christmas I experienced after starting this journey was spent in agony.
So there I am with my companion who is helping me survive and I'm trying to think clear enough
to give them my information, I have no money, and because what was going on I had already
had surgery to fix the problem once and the doctor who did the surgery didn't do what he needed to
to make sure the problem didn't come back.
Sort of a revolving money spiket that every so many moneys you go back into surgery for the same
thing or loose your life.

Without going into explicit details that would make some loose their lunch, it's enough to say that
what was going on was indeed life threatening.
The first time it happened I spent a week puking every three hours and having to try to stay warm.
My body temp was dropping over the week and went below 98.6 to where it had become dangerous
for me not to go to the hospital.
The same thing sent me to the hospital two months after I had begun my journey.

I went to a catholic hospital. They have to take you. It's part of their rules.
They will not turn anyone away.
I met the man who was my surgon for the first time at about 11 pm Christmas night.
It was a wensday, which all the evidence shows is the worst day of the week to have surgery.
More accidents happen in surgeries on that day than any other.
I looked at this man with kind eyes and asked him how long he had been doing this.
He told me. It was more than just a couple of year.
Had he had any sleep at all before he got called in.
Yes. Good. I don't want to go under the knife with a person on holding the blade who is over worked
and exausted.
I was terrified at that moment because the realization that I could die on that table and no one
I had left behind would know that I had died.
It was my first taste of the reality of how inconsequencial a person really is.
And how they can just disapear and vanish and no one who they have known their entire life has any
idea of how to find them.
That's what I was looking at.
My children are grown, and I had called them regularily with phone cards that people had given me,
Bless them much for their kindness.

I talked with the chaplin and asked if anything happened to call them so they would know where to
find me.
You think about strange things as you go under. All I could think about was I might never
see day light again.
I was pissed too because the surgon who did the first surgery didn't do all of what he was suppose to do
and there was a bill for it as though it was there.

Which brings up something important. If you ever have to go to the hospital whether you have insurance
or not, when the bill comes go over that thing with a fine toothed comb.
I don't know how many states allow double billing for the same thing, but I do know of at least two.
That is gettting charged by the hospital for the doctor using the opperating room and all his services there
and the doctor charging you for the same thing.
And all the tools and gauzes and pain medication and everything else.

I woke up the next morning about 3 am. I was indeed alive. And then my very brief and mostly
alone stay began.
I was there two days. I got a visit from a county social worker who was as nice as pie but was
all business.
I don't know about you but when your pumped full of morphine or something similar it's really
hard to think very clear.
It's all kind of a weird blur, and you do your best to pay attention.

Dispite the doctor's advise I drove myself to the place we were staying over some icy roads.
I was careful as I could be in that condition.
It was a place that had opened up due to meeting one of the workers at the one shelter we did stay
He decited to have us come stay with him.
It wasn't something he had discussed with his roommate who he owed money to, he just decited
that we should come home with him.
So that's where we were when this all happened.
The guy's name on the lease was a youth pastor who spent three weeks in indecision wether or not
to kick us out.
He was pissed at his roommate for all the money he owed, back rent and food left out on counters, and
basicly being a lousy roommate.
So we get there after the drive and then there are 4 flights of stairs to walk up, no elevator in this place.
And when we get to the room we've been occuping this guy is there and he won't leave,
and I'm beyond exausted.

A few days later I'm sitting in the county health department filling out some forms and I end up
on this side of a desk facing a burned out person who is so tired of seeing people like me all day
He gives me half information. Tells me that I don't have to file an appeal right away, which
in this state you have to in order to make sure that there is a possiblity of getting any help
at all.
So after all was said and done I was given the title of indegnt by design.
A very humlitating title. I hadn't been able to find work, and yes I was out there every day looking
and putting in apps, and even going to the day labor, who would not even give me the time
of day because my social security card was in storage 6 states away.

I had to have it sent to me. Just so I could do more than go door to door trying to sell my art to

It was an education. I discovered that I am a very strong and resilliant person. That I am capable
of doing things and learning how to make do with next to nothing.
Oh one other fine point. Insurance for your vechiel.
Very nessiary to have.
We had gotten on food stamps and were fulfilling the requirements of going to the career center to
make our weekly appointment of turning in a page of places we had applied to for work,
when we got rear ended by a guy who could barely speak english.
It was his fault, but I ended up in court listening to a Judge tell everyone there that they were
facing jail time of either one year or five years depending on what they were there for.
I was sure I was in the wrong place.
But no, in this state if you end up in court for having no insurance you go to jail. Period.
This judge listened to me and gave me two weeks to come up with insurance.
I managed to sell enough art to pay for 3 months.
Yea! no jail time.

That was in the first year I went out there.
Here it is 3 years later, I have a roof over my head. But that is dependant on 4 other people helping
make the rent.
I get to eat more than once a day.
And I have a bed to sleep in.
I've learned that anything is possible. And the word bordom has long since vanished from my vocabluary.
I went out there with no plan, and threw myself to the wind to find out what I was made of.
I'm still finding out.
I know some of what I like, and more of what I don't.
I'm learning to pick and choose how I spend my life. What I spend my energy on, and what is a true
waste of time.
It's very basic. And getting more so all the time.
And my view of how things really are out there have been shaped by my experiences.
I don't believe 95% of what the goverment says.
It's too big to keep tabs on all of what goes on inside it's frame work.

And I see well dressed people who have never been out there really to know what is really needed
to make things different and better for thoes of us who have.
It's my belief that everyone who wants to go into politics should spend at least two years
homeless and see what they learn before they go into goverment.
They should have first hand knowledge about who they are working for.

They are in fact our employees. If you pay taxes, they are working for you. But unlike
a normal job, where if your paying a bad employee's salery, you can just fire them.
No, we get stuck with clueless and sometimes well meaning individuals who get tangled up
in the system, just from the other end of things.

It's my hope that soon I will be living off my art. Only this time doing it in a way that doesn't
end me back out on the streets.
I'm hoping for sucess. Maybe this time it will be the right time to do it.
I can only try and believe that it's possible.

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