October 1, 2010

Cyprus Knees!


It's been a good amount of time since I last wrote. What's transpired as time has passed, becoming so very fluid while my thoughts have become firm and my inner self tastes freedom more and more each day..

The last couple weeks in Camden pressed that city inescapably into my heart. I am filled with heaviness and love as I write this now, five weeks after driving away with a screams reverberating within me.
Her leaning into him, shooting into his back outside McDonald's as kids rolled by on bikes and people walked by without a second glance. The emptiness and eerie silence of 500 State the night we drove home to find our house taped off, blood stains from our neighbor's murdered body darkening the steps next door. Standing on the front steps listening to people chat, watching people walk by, all as normal the morning after. That 13 year old boys grinning face looking up at me, "so how do you like Camden now?"
It's the most messed up place I've ever been.
And the service day in the park that had been closed for weeks because of a murder.. the 70 community members who showed up to help clean up the park, their park. The movie night in said park that night.. over a hundred locals showing up to watch Avatar on a blow-up screen with a blasting sound system - too much water-ice.. so much popcorn.. so many people, together in a city with no reason to trust anyone at anytime.
I'll remember the AHEC van, surveying individuals about their thoughts on needle drop-boxes and a needle exchange system.
I can't write about every person, just as there's no way to dive in and go through everything I saw, heard, experienced, felt. I feel I'm doing an incredible injustice to the city as a whole by not telling every story and taking the time to relive it all, but I don't think I'm ready to right now.
Messed up and beautiful. Dead and hopeful. I've never been anyplace so cold and felt so okay. Camden, you certainly made an impression on me.

I spent a week in bed, sick and tired and unable to do anything (something I've also never experienced before). Why, I'm not entirely sure, except that Camden depleted me.

But to switch gears, what's happened since is wonderful wonderful wonderful! I'm living in Virginia Beach, VA in a tiny house three miles from the Atlantic Ocean..
Falling asleep to crashing waves and waking up sandy and happy with the birds and the rising sun will never get old. Just as the constant strumming of guitars and the positive, motivated atmosphere didn't take too long to get used to.

I'm on this brand new composite team for this, my final, round. In two days I begin training for my Wildland Firefighting "Red Card". As for right now, I'm happy. Very happy.

And I walk barefoot down the street in the morning.
And I read Hesse and Kerouac and Dostoevsky, and Whitman.
And I play pianos in tiny churches with people I met only two weeks before (but I've known them forever).
And I talk life with people who make me want to be more alive.
And I feel *sigh* I feel like me.
And that's big.

(oh yeah, and about that photo.. I am officially a dumpster diver.)


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