Entities in Relation

She wakes up as she has every morning for the past week, the feeling of small stirring warmth, paws across her side-laying hip, the crook of her bent knees in the damp heat under heavy blankets, fetidly humid like a womb, a nest. She wonders at the human infant’s animal pull to the slight sour warmth under its mother’s breast, how deeply the new-born person must delight in the comfort of all the animal smells that we try to wash away and cover. 

She doesn’t use shampoo anymore, because she is tired of the plastic bottles slimy and compressed into a ugly, squeezed-in bend, lids snapped and hanging sharply, the sweet smelling sudsy slick goo almost impossible to get out for the empty bottles to be recycled, the water running and running and running. 

Her daughter insists on the Honey Treasures; “It’s the only shampoo I use, mom.” The seventeen-year-old believes that her mother is unreasonable to suggest that perhaps she find a shampoo that doesn’t come in impossible plastic bottles, the procession of the many, many bottles over the the years of her single existence adding up in her mind to be mounds and mounds on beaches, encrusted with sand and becoming brittle in the sun and salt, but still recognizable, Paul Mitchell circa 1991, bottles thrown directly into the garbage because what else was there to do with them in the woods where there was no recycling, only garbage picked up at the end of the road once a week?

The woman uses salt to clean her scalp – sea salt and epsom soaked in fragrant essential oils, frankincense and bergamot, lavender. She buys the bags, still plastic, of salts at the salvage grocery store, expired and pulled from shelves at stores that she rarely shops at, stores she can’t afford, where she feels uneven at the edges as she walks through the aisles that smell uniformly like herbs and bakery and always a little like fish, the unavoidable consequence of selling seafood in the mountains. She doesn’t have an ideology or a practice or a belief about the salt and why she uses it instead of shampoo, only that she likes the burn of it in pinpricks on her scalp and on her ribs where she is itchy from eating bread that she bakes constantly now that there is an oven again. It reminds her of the ocean, which – again – she has not seen this year, and now finds that the thought of traveling to the coast is bound tight, and she can feel the reality of going somewhat stretching and taut like an impossibility that – of course – is not really impossible, but is likely to rupture the fragile everyday likelihoods of experience that have defined this time of the pandemic, the slip into isolation and sucking gravity of what felt like friendship, what was – for a time at least – friendship, before she ever had thought about the possibility that the schools would close because of a virus, and that they would stay closed for as long as they did, her daughter returning a senior attending her one or two classes almost as novelty, doing only enough to get by not because she is lazy, but because she is economical about her investment in American History II at this point in her growth and as a member of a generation that is only now beginning to understand that that country that they live in, the country their ancestors fought and died for, the country that they believed in and were proud of, the country the worked their whole lives defending and propping up even as things went to hell as far as, well…almost everything, everything this country is supposed to be about…it hurts even her, who long since stopped believing in the legitimacy of countries as effective forms of organizing collective populations and resources, industries, militaries, etc. 

If there were no countries, there could be no war between countries. 

She has the simplistic thinking of a child, but doesn’t care anymore. The world is full of people who think all sorts of ways. Nothing about anything she thinks hurts people or rapes women or sells children or bombs libraries, burns forests, dumps shit into oceans, devises charismatic marketing for toxic products. 

This is what she tells herself, as a matter of protection. She wonders what she feels she may need protection from, why it feels dangerous to say that she doesn’t believe in countries anymore. Why is that a dangerous thing to say? 

In some segment of dream last night, full of boggy areas and a rainy outer stadium, she heard the sound of the Pledge, and in the dream she found her right hand moving toward her heart in the pale peach of a post-rain afternoon as she walked beside some unknown person who looked at her sideways and didn’t have to ask why she was holding her hand to heart as they walked, why she had stopped for just a moment, hearing the words, a little surprised to find how automatic it was to raise the hand, to focus on the words, she caught the side-eyed look and said, “I…I learned this. We had to say it everyday.”

I’m thinking about contributing a “Future Genesis NFT” of a winning-bidder selected still-frame from one my CLOUD WAKE videos. 

The item to be auctioned would be ownership of experimental new media artist and rogue researcher FAITHRR’s 1/1 Genesis NFT. 

[Info. if needed: a Genesis piece is the first NFT minted by an artist, and they can be quite collectible. 1/1 just means there is one edition minted on the chain.]

The winner of the auction would be issued a physical certificate of ownership of the FAITHRR’s Future Genesis NFT, signed by me. The winner would have their choice of one of 12 still-frame pieces. 

At time of minting, ownership would be transferred to the winning bidder – who would need an ETH compatible wallet. I would be open to minting on another blockchain. It might be a minute before I can afford the transaction fees to mint a piece to be transferred for free to someone, since the fees can be quite high – but, eventually I will be able to mint work as NFTs, and the winner of the auction not only gets to own my first NFT, they also get to select the still-frame to be minted. 

Here’s a link to a couple videos of the digital pieces that a still frame could be minted as an NFT from:  

https://youtube.com/shorts/wTMzAq4DSyg?feature=share

https://youtube.com/shorts/JRIWqsu6gwE?feature=share

Deadline for auction items is 11/19, right? No need to respond if it is. 

I have some paper cranes made out of cloud photographs that I make when I think about people who have died by suicide, some artsy little practice+reflection cards, and some little wire bird magnets that are kinda cool, smaller items I could throw in as a “Special Presents for Strangers Gift Pack” – as all these items are designed to be left in public spaces for people to come across and wonder briefly about, a small and potentially lovely disruption.


Hi, are there any forums for _______people new to _____to get non-hype advice on what to ____ for short-term______, long-term _______, etc. 

There is a lot of information out there, and it’s hard to know who or what to trust, which creates over-caution and missed opportunities for low wealth people trying to create a base from which to expand _______and ______holdings…or are there specific threads or media sources that people trust to get information about _____or______?

I may have brain damage or perhaps have stumbled into an accidental state of being deeply authentic only by virtue of having lost the ability to mask or to figure out the complexities – the inevitable null conclusion – of masking strategy for social safety or connection, the broke level bars of her capacity to amplify, subdue, mitigate, regulate, mediate, emphasize, and play to certain facets of her being (none exactly inauthentic, but existing in the slant of omission bias and allowing people to believe certain things about her less from a spirit of endorsement than from fatigue in trying to make sure that people aren’t seeing her sideways, seeing her as only a partial and distorted version of whatever she might be as a person. 

She doesn’t know what she is, but she knows what she is not, and she knows what her values are though she is still learning how to practice and carry out her values in integrity and what that means for her as far as her relationship with the general culture and society that purportedly defines the country that she lives in, a country that she no longer believes in, though she can recognize and appreciate the mishandled (or manhisled) 

You know, it’s funny, I have never felt remotely scared in any of the sketchy situations I’ve found myself in through work and proximity with troubled lives. I think that even before I understood that I believe in and experience God working both in my life and somehow through me, I knew that I would only find something like grace if I followed where I was led to go, that I would be protected, and even welcomed while…

I’m doing really well, thanks!

I got up super early to give _____ a ride to the hospital for some minor heart tests and of course that unfurled into a bizarro sequence of complicated plans involving multiple parties to get a paper to a lawyer at the courthouse before 9 – a bit of early morning real world chaos absurdity in dysfunctional institutions. 

It’s interesting to see how unsettled _____ can make people when they get frustrated and confused.  I guess I’m just used to ____’s particular brand of volatility, the predictable rhythms of their anger, the things they say when they are angry. 

Anyway, when I went into ____’s apt to get them this morning, there was an awesome new pair of plain black flip flops with an ankle strap someone had given ____ and I got to keep ‘em cause they are just my size.

I’ve been doing pretty well, in general. Nash’s mom had puppies again and two of the baby girl dogs ended up w Nash’s foster and now they live here w us and are part of the protective orbit of animal family that I have assemble to surround me since ending our relationship. I have plenty of oxytocin and am not getting much done. How are you?

😂…and if ________ is going to have people running all over trying help to deal w all the various situations, we should at least be in touch w one another and maybe can come up w some kind of plan to improve communication and reduce frustration+shenani

Hey, ____- Thanks for reaching out and inviting me to chat for a bit. I’d love to say hello, and give a few minutes to my interest____. Let me know some times that may be good for you. I have had some health and household stuff going on the past couple of weeks (nothin’ serious, just a bad cold and rescue puppies 😍) and so my intent to check out the Mighty Network space and begin to participate in some small way was somewhat undermined. To be honest, my community and social energies are all over the place lately (lately meaning ‘in my life, always’ 😂). However, I have been getting ____newsletters and following along and signed up for a workshop that I ended up not signing onto. I am not sure how/where/if I’ll fit into to the ___ flow and movement, but the work you’re doing resonates with the work that I am doing that I want to be doing more of.

I am in transition from being ‘Faith who does Peer Support and Recovery Stuff’ to ‘Faith who is Burnt Out AF on Working Anywhere in Proximity to Formal Institutions and Rooms Where She has to Mask in Order to Be Remotely Socially Safe and Where She is Not Allowed to Say Anything About How Any Institution Claiming to Remotely Be About Public Health and Safety Needs to Address the Fact that Structural and Systemic Inequities and Abuses Along with Our Particularly Toxic American Brand of Codependent Consumer Capitalism is Causing Basically All of the Fucking Problems that Systems of So-Called Care are Absorbing and Wasting Billions of Dollars trying to Solve, Etc. Etc. ad nauseum, and so Now Faith is Finally F’ing Being Who She Is – Not that She Knows.’

Hey you all – safe travels + good work + *thank you* for everything you offer to one another here – so reassuring to see genuine kindness & support…my world has gotten very busy the past few days (all good things!)…much gratitude & happy Friday! @_______#6086 I ♥️your work and I have a feeling that the NFT space is about to start collecting collectors (🙂) that are all about fine arts photography NFTs. I haven’t entered the space *at all* yet, but I know that when I do, it’s gonna take a while for new media niche collectors to find my work…I’m just glad to be alive and to still have big dream*z*. I hear you on the marketing piece – huge barrier. I think some introverted folks and I were gonna talk about that, how to support one another in getting past the discomfort of self-promotion and be bold in valuing our work, etc. The conversation didn’t quite happen, but I have been experimenting in self-confidence…it feels good, and thus far the outcomes have been favorable. May prosperity and assurance find its way to you today.

I am looping back here, @_________…to say thank you for honoring us with your beautiful sharing of these memories of (_______). I think all mothers (and all children) just do the best they can to figure out how to get through whatever sets of circumstances, pressures, and opportunities we might find ourselves in…thanks for thinking I’m a good mom…

I don’t even like the word mom anymore…its just too loaded and – at least in my family – *’mom’* means person-who-is-stripped-of-all-other-identity-or-value-and-denied-any-venture-not-sanctioned-by-the-authority-of-the-family-and-if-you-do-try-to-do-something-a-family-member-does-not-like-or-understand-they-will-call-you-a-selfish-irresponsible-mother-and-use-mental-health-stigma-to-take-your-kids-away.

Thank god my kids are aging out of their childhoods and that I am emerging relatively unscathed.

Read, heard, & resonated. I am having contract work anxiety, too – and having to remind myself that if things go south with the gigs I have this season, then it is simply a message from the metaverse that I am supposed to be doing something else, that my amazingness is needed elsewhere. 

Still the real deal is it is scary and – for most people, me included – not sustainable seeming to trust the metaverse to hook a person up w the right opportunities and energies to move art forward as a means of living…I have fallen flat on my face (several times) trusting the metaverse…but, maybe that’s more cause I was a jackass about a lot of stuff.

If you know how to make art to mint NFTs and are already a part of the community, I’d say you’re pretty well set-up to expand that work? 

It’s still scary tho’ I’d expect you’d have support, or could maybe arrange for support in someway?

I think that the influential creator-curators of the NFT space – from an outside perspective (haha, mine) – still have a ton of…well…influence about what rises, falls, and stalls in the NFT market as it relates to bigger cultural spheres…which is kind of awesome to think that a bunch of artists, some of whom have amazing futurist and decentralization oriented values, have created a platform in which the superfluous, absurd, and iconic compete in subjective value.

It’s kind of incredible (and also really scary, cause of market volatility and scammers and the rabid transactionalism that seems to come w anything having to do with ‘money.’)

This is a great article about the NFT markets’ ability to create culture and assign value, thus leveraging influence to impact the economy – and potentially redistribute wealth + establish new economic interests through the organic cultural generation of asset value to non-fungible digital objects that reflect or communicate or are created by artists/communities/benefit collabs working from a different set of interests re: art, money, aesthetics, and deep worth, purpose. ) restoration and reparations re: indigenous communities and the descendants of enslaved peoples?

Hey, I can reach back out tomorrow morning. Sorry I’ve not been in touch – trying to get my own contracts and work structure off the ground so that I can be independent and able to maximize my personal quality of life and expand the scope of impact of my work. 

I have been exhausting myself and selling myself way short trying to hold and support other people’s urgent visions (regardless of whether it is well-informed or respectful of other urgent visions that may be occurring in the world and regardless of whether or not due diligence has been done in developing the vision). 

Meanwhile, hardly anybody I know *at all* (with the exception of a few, among who you are included in some ways) actually sees or understands me or cares at all about the work I have been building for 20 years beyond the extent to which it ties into or validates their work and vision. I feel like a tool and like a commodity in many ways and it does not feel good. I want to support people, but I am a person with serious fucking limitations and I am going through a few major life transitions – including my mom dying of cancer and my kids leaving home and me realizing that I only have literally 7k *to my name* and almost 100k of debt and I cannot fuck around with trying to help everybody, especially if they are not as invested in my vision as I am in theirs. 

I am –

– for years supporting other people’s vision of what is needed and how it’s needed and it’s this totally bizarre thing where everyone is wanting to do their own personal thing – even if people tell them that maybe they should approach it a different way.

Hey, I can check in w you tomorrow in the morning btwn 9&10 sometime. I’m sorry I haven’t been in touch. I am waiting for information to be provided via email or document re the opportunity and what content/ideas are already at least partially documented from other materials. It does not have to be a complicated summary of where a potential opportunity is and what you have in mind, things you might build on, but it is really difficult for me (as a person with an auditory processing sensory integration issue) to absorb and talk through a bunch of ideas on the phone, esp when I have zero idea about what is happening w the opportunity. I want to support your vision – but, I’m also fighting tooth and nail to get my own life a little more sustainable and supportive of my well-being. 

Doing this work in the nonprofit sector for 25 years has left me almost a 100k in debt, with only 7k to my name – which is disgusting to actually think about considering how hard I have worked. I srsly might have to completely step back from the standard issue nonprofit hustle and silo’ing and competition and limited framework for being real about the impact that economies and capitalist culture and structures of oppression are srsly fucking up peoples lives. 

So I can check in tomorrow – but my energy for this stuff is super strained atm, and I absolutely have to prioritize my energy towards endeavors that are generative and not depletive, action-oriented and maybe not even having anything to do with the nonprofit industrial complex at all for awhile because the energies around that whole sector are just terrible for me rn. So, I want to help, but I also need to be realistic about how I am feeling around boundaries of energy and the critical need to get my shit together for myself in ways that have nothing to do with relying on the nonprofit sector to provide for me or my family. I have fucked around w trying to advocate and transform for 10 years and it’s gotten nowhere except me being burnt out AF and actually damaged in my humanity because I can’t even be who I am in these scenes and that sucks.

10/30

I love the purple and gold glow here. What a powerful about and mission statement. From a reader perspective, if I were to come upon this site I’d be…

inspired, 

intrigued, 

…and also curious about the specifics – I’d try to click on the services listed to learn more about what a couple of things meant – like what does community service look like, what is public health crisis aid, what ebps do you do, etc.

The language about grooming and criminalistics might be confusing to me because of I’m not aware of the use of the terms, except grooming for sexual abuse or exploitation – which is definitely something to talk about, but I get the sense that you’re referring to the process of socialization, social learning, and power/threat manipulations that teach people to be disempowered or confused in their sense of personal worth, agency, and potential…and I wonder if there is another word for that? 

I am thinking about starting a mutual aid grant writing and project design strategy group for people who I know who are (or who have) independently reached out to me for grant writing or project design support  to potentially gather in one space to talk about and co-learn about and help one another in putting their work together. I think every single person I know is working on a start-up of some kind and I can’t think of any friend of mine who I haven’t provided pro bono consulting or copywriting services to in the past couple years – so, if this is something the universe is asking me to do, to help people get their visions off the ground as a matter of creating equity and building capacity in communities that have not had the privileges of education I have had (tho do keep in mind that I am a high school drop out from South Georgia that scraped her way through community college and then a 4 yr and then a MA and that I have 80,000 dollars of debt for the program that taught me a lot of what I know about designing dynamic community based projects that maximize impact of funding and resources while leveraging and expanding community strengths, blah, blah…

And anyone who is my friend knows very very very deeply that it is not – in fact – my dream to be a grant writer and it especially is not my dream to be a grant writer for dysfunctional projects that I wouldn’t want my name associated with out of respect for my integrity as deeply ethical person who feels literally nauseous when I see the nonprofit hustle bs that goes on in this town and tbh I am weary of people who barely know me but who decide on their own accord that we are friends (without my input or consent or agreement to the terms of that friendship as far as support, pro bono emotional and cognitive labor provided at-cost to my personal ability to show up for my own projects which aren’t just some thing that “I” (theoretical example person) decided “I” wanted to do a couple of years ago and for which “I” have done nothing but take some handwritten notes and with which “my” (again, not me – faith – example person) personal savior ego is inextricably enmeshed with and that “i” think is so special and unique that it deserves the sacrifice of time and energy of a person who “I” call my friend who has their own project(s) that my ‘friend’ (me here now, speaking of the characteristics of my own projects in development) have spent several decades actively working (and going into debt 😂) to learn how to develop in a way that isn’t just some poorly informed fantasy of community service and that actually might address some of the issues in community related not to substance use and mental health, but to fucking designed poverty and scarcity and consumption and capitalism and exploitation of basically anything in a hyper-transactional economy in which everything is commodity and competition. I have ZERO interest in sitting at tables with people who aren’t talking about serious transformation – and I get that, in ways, you are and____ is working in transformative ways, and that is why I am talking with you and also you’re my friend, at least in some ways, and I want to preserve and grow that and we have work to do w the community peer support stuff in _____ & _____. 

I do need more info about the specific grant opportunities w dht and the info sent to them so far and any potential proposal content that has already been developed, because I cannot generate grant content from thin air without seriously fucking taxing my communicative and imaginative capacities which I need for my own projects in development. So, all of that really needs to be known. 

I would be happy to create a 1.5 hour weekly drop-in co-learning space for people to talk about grants and proposal development, and the basics of what a person needs to keep in mind (from my perspective) about project design and the realities of the work people aspire to bring to their communities. 

I am so sick of cultures of competition and shit talking and petty side eyed territorialism derailing collaborations and am just not going to be a part of the same old nonprofit song and dance and I have been reallly clear with everyone for months that I am needing to step back from this world and figure out my own way and tbh it totally sucks that my friends tether me to that world and that some of my friends even echo the garbage-y perspectives on mental health that any one who actually knew me (and you – bless you, have never used language about mental health that is triggering or repulsive to me and that is another reason why you’re my friend – the mental health stuff ) and I’m sick of my friends asking me if I’m okay and thinking I’m not saying anything because I’m having mental health issues.

I am just trying to stay focused on getting my own life on track and I have had 3 people leverage the whole money thing about “don’t you want to be able to get paid by me to do my work to make my project” and it’s like “oh, gee thanks there is no other way I could make it in the world without shackling myself to poverty in the nonprofit world and the mental health world that has been fucking up my life since 1988. Yup. That’s all we see for you, Faith – you can just do our work for us. Fuck your own work. Put your own dreams on back burner.”

I seriously need anyone who is actually my friend to acknowledge and respect that as a survivor of psychiatric violence whose life has been extremely fucked up by other peoples dumb perceptions of who I am and how I am doing I have a right to have nothing to do with the mental health world if I choose to. I do not have a personal responsibility to transform the mental health system. 

I am not a fucking martyr to the system that hurt me and whose dumb ideas and shitty policies has caused the death of many of my real friends who actually knew more than a FB profile scroll about who I am and cared about me for more than how I made them feel or what I could do for them. 

The South French Broad Sanctuaries and Relational Arts Space, Asheville, NC

I am in the process of developing proposal/pitch media for an emergent arts project called The South French Broad Sanctuaries and Relational Arts Space in which I – an eccentric semi-genius wounded healer with decades of experience being in relationship with vulnerable and marginalized people as a neighbor, friend, collaborator, professional service provider and advocate – decide to form a collective body and identify a nonprofit partner organization to work with in developing a strategy to fractionalize ‘ownership’ of this house for the purpose of collaboratively purchasing and rehabilitating this ‘property’ – the home I have lived in for 17 years – a lovely-but-in-need-of-repair 111 year old gem located in Asheville, NC (The Paris of the South) on a small semi-private lot on South French Broad Ave, a central residential/commercial street that connects downtown Asheville to the River Arts District, both of which are less than a mile away, as is the booming South Slope District. 

This home is located in an area that was home to Cherokee peoples, and then – later – became a Black neighborhood in this small Southern city. Gentrification, predatory lending, and entrenched structural and systemic racism within local economies slowly pushed out the neighborhood’s historic residents. The location of the home is unique in that it sits a half-mile from two public housing complexes that are home to many people living in poverty, a number of whom are members of families who are from this neighborhood, but who can no longer afford to live in private homes here. In this neighborhood, there is also a sizable population of unsheltered homeless folks who establish camps in the small stretch of woods that separate this neighborhood from the River Arts District. The student clinic of the acupuncture school sits across from the Asheville Middle School, and there are several churches within one block of the home. South French Broad Avenue has long been an area where addiction-related prostitution is part of the hidden economy and there is a great deal of relational violence that occurs in the communities surrounding this home.

Many of the homes on the street are worth almost 500k, due to their proximity to the city’s arts and culture centers and because they are lovely, large old homes. 

This house was mortgaged by my family for 180k in 2004. The plan was that my then-partner and I would take over ownership when we were financially able to do so.

This is the home I raised my two children in, and the space that I have welcomed friends and guests into, the space that I have tried to share, because – as a person who knows a lot of people who are houseless, who are unsheltered, who do not have a door they can close and lock – I struggle with the ethics of holding private property. 

However, the relationship with my partner ended and as a person who is marginalized in normative economies due to differences in ability that create disabilities in some areas and remarkable strengths in others, and which involve sensory and social stress vulnerabilities that limit community inclusion and create distinct wellness challenges if not mitigated by intentional intervention, I have never been able to achieve sustained financial independence, much less anything remotely resembling abundant financial success in the Western world. It is acknowledged that in comparison to many people’s lives in many places, even conditions of relative poverty in the United States would be seen and experienced as extreme luxury in many, many places in the world. Even here in the United States, most folks who are alongside me in their monthly earnings and personal assets – (scraping by paycheck-to-paycheck with no real access to healthcare and forgoing their own needs and interests to ensure that their kids have at least the basic accoutrements of a ‘normal American life,’ in terms of shoes and food and access to recreation) – would not have the opportunity to live in a house like this, a nice old house in a desirable location.

If it were not for my family’s involvement in ensuring that my kids and I had stable, reasonably safe shelter and reliable transportation, our lives would have been very different in ways that I am not entirely sure would have turned out okay.

I cannot afford to buy this house – or even pay the monthly bills without assistance from my family’s dwindling savings, as they have had to help to support me throughout my adult life.

I don’t feel good about that. I don’t like it. I have never liked it, nor have they.

I am tired of being a financial burden to my family, and they are tired of the financial burden of this house with its list of sorely-needed repairs and improvements that just gets a little longer every year.

Now that my children are transitioning to adulthood (both with strong work ethics, commitments to their personal occupational goals, and a strong awareness of the importance of financial independence and autonomy), ‘something else needs to happen with the house.’

In the industries I have worked in, it is almost impossible to earn enough to live on as someone who cannot work a standard 9-5 gig without significantly compromising wellness. I am a hard worker and, as my resume indicates, am committed to being in service to those who are suffering and struggling. I am a person who has dedicated their life to trying to understand what creates suffering in the world and what helps people to heal.

I am also, however, an artist. Underlying everything else that I am, have been, or may possibly become, I am an artist. It is a rare set of circumstances that has led me to be in a position of significant influence in deciding the fate of this space. As an artist, my art is transformation and innovation, inversion of the frameworks and erosion of the conceptions that limit our collective human potential to work and live together in the world in ways that aren’t just a mess of complex tragedies resulting in the avoidable deaths and multitudes of almost unimaginable sufferings for so many people, so many species, so much life on Earth that has been harmed by human errors and violent avarice that is beyond animalistic. I have ZERO interest in selling this house on the public real estate market to whomever offers the highest price in the quickest amount of time with the least complicated contractual stipulations. I care about this house. I have lived here longer than I have ever lived anywhere, even longer than I lived in my hometown of St. Mary’s, Georgia which – as most people who actually know me know – was and is the landscape that I refer to when I say home. I have lived here longer and I want to stay here, at least in some ways. I want to be connected to the place, to not just turn it over to the highest bidder and walk away.

I’m not the sort of artist that paints pictures of the geraniums on the porch, though I have painted a nasturtium or two. I am not, in fact, an artist of any specific type. I work across a lot of different media, and my methods change over time. I am a constant experimenter, researcher, and creator of possible worlds.

The South French Broad Sanctuaries and Relational Arts Space will be a fractionalized asset, cooperatively-owned semi-public space that houses a small gallery featuring curated exhibits by underrepresented local artists, and also provides ample and lovely space for community-offered healing resources. The asset will be distributed intentionally to ensure that at least 50% of the principal asset (the space, ‘the property’) and a fraction of any assets generated by activities occurring within the projects hosted by and catalyzed by the space.

The private Sanctuary spaces include a one-bedroom apartment with a separate entrance and a discretionary use sanctuary room. The downstairs gallery and healing arts studio spaces can be made handicap accessible. The house is situated on a well-shaded lot set above and back from the sidewalk between a sober-living house and a field that the next door neighbor is allowing to become forested. 

There are many birds in proximity. 

This home is already a sanctuary, and I want it to become a community asset. 

In collaboration with local, national, and international supporters, The South French Broad Sanctuaries and Relational Arts Space Collective will raise at least 500,000.00 dollars through fractionalized sale of the home to support the purchase and repair of the property at 273 S French Broad Avenue, Asheville, NC.

Any funds raised in excess of this amount will be directed to operating reserve funds and may support the development of special assistance projects that are designed to respond to specific community needs. 

I am a valued and cared-for member of this community and have various connections (direct and by-proxy) with arts and human rights communities both nationally and internationally. 

Initial feedback for this idea has been 100% enthusiastic. 

My neighbors would be thrilled to see this property improved and new, generative, life-improving stories catalyzed by experiences on S. French Broad Avenue, which has been a path of suffering for many, many people. 

As cities and towns struggle to address the reality of homelessness and housing scarcity, exploring ways that privately owned properties can be transitioned to publicly held assets that serve a purpose in the communities they exist within and create opportunities for investors to think beyond property values and to contribute to innovative re-purposing of assets to maximize both positive community impact and investment value is an area of surging interest and new research into emergent models of collaborative asset and resource management. 

In our individual and collective struggles to make sense of lives and purpose in a rapidly changing and very confused world, it is increasingly important that we identify simple and integrated practices and dialogical, experiential approaches to supporting people in healing from bad ideas and mistreatment of their humanity. 

The South French Broad Sanctuaries and Relational Arts Space will offer free healing arts classes, groups, experiences, and resources, as well as Open Space and Open Studio time for the local and visiting public to spend time with the space and the artists, healers, and friends that co-create this offering. These offerings will be made possible through collaborations with other organizations offering integrated healing resources and may serve as a satellite location for some existing services, depending on community needs and collaborative capacity. 

By inviting the public to help to create this space as an evolving work of living, relational art, opportunities for local and regional artisans (particularly those from marginalized or underrepresented demographic and social groups) to design and create spaces within the interior and exterior of the home will be offered as an integral part of the development of this living arts project. 

The property includes a broad set of front steps leading to a very pleasant porch overlooking a garden of trees that surrounds a small private yard. 

The public area of sidewalk and small stretch of grass in front of the house will be home to a small public peace garden and place of offering. Large stones for sitting and resting will be placed between the sidewalk and the street and a public resource offering station will provide care and comfort items to the struggling people who pass by this house every day. Working in collaboration with friends and colleagues that operate different nonprofit, Faith-based, and community initiatives, The South French Broad Sanctuaries and Relational Arts Space will serve as a ‘connection’ node and safe meeting place in the community. 

The South French Broad Sanctuaries and Relational Arts Space will be collectively coordinated by asset-fraction holders and artist-healer collaborators and will be structured in a way that allows for the community, neighborhood, and city ecosystems it is a part of to participate in the evolution of the offering. 

Through creative documentation of experiences and reflections on the development and existence of this project, The South French Broad Sanctuaries and Relational Arts Space will create new media, participatory action research projects, and creative products that are designed to contribute to deeper understanding of our human natures in relation to the ecosystems we are inescapably connected to in life and death. 

Early investors and ‘initial project architects’ can learn more about The South French Broad Sanctuaries and Relational Arts Space by contacting Faith Rhyne, faith@faithrr.net (828) 545-8321 (text is best for first phone contact). 

Please note that the home includes an amazing high-eaved attic space that could be transformed into a significantly wonderful additional Sanctuary space. A long-term structural goal for the space is to create a rooftop sky observatory and any structural artists and architects which may be interested in contributing to the creation of this special feature are strongly encouraged to reach out. The back of the house includes a small driveway area that is quite overgrown. This area is adequate for a narrow, two-story tiny home and is plumbing + electrical accessible. 

Due to the fact that the The South French Broad Sanctuaries and Relational Arts Space will be a public arts offering, the curation and creation of design, exhibits, activities, media documenting the evolving living arts projects which are catalyzed by ‘the Space’ will be skillfully produced and broadly shared. 

The South French Broad Sanctuaries and Relational Arts Space will be hosted by a live-in ‘Sanctuary Steward’ that coordinates activities, engages with the public, and maintains the daily operations, maintenance, and hospitality responsibilities of the spaces and environments of the project. Sanctuary Stewards will be provided lodging and amenities, as well as a 1500.00 per month living stipend. Sanctuary Stewards, as ambassadors of ‘the Space’ and in fidelity with the project’s guiding values, will be expected to have deep investment in and familiarity with the day-to-day operations of the offering and the long-term vision for emergent evolution of the project’s role and function-of-presence in the community ecosystem. Local collective members providing healing groups or complementary health services may seek grant funding to support their work within the space and The South French Broad Sanctuaries and Relational Arts Space will provide technical assistance and funding liaison support to artists, healers, and community health educators in the community ecosystem. Two Co-Steward positions will be provided a _____/month stipend in exchange for 20 flex-schedule hours per week, and may provide overnight Stewardship as needed for an additional stipend of 50.00/night. 

The South French Broad Sanctuaries and Relational Arts Space will work with local services, contract workers, and artisans to contribute to the health of the local economy, and will source supplies in a similar fashion. 

273 S. French Broad Avenue can be purchased from the property’s current owners for 250k, and the remaining 250k of initial investments will be used for the following initial repairs and improvements (for which some estimates have been done): 

  • A new roof (preferably metal) [Note: The rooftop sky observation and reflection deck, or at least large attic skylights or dormers is an amazing idea and could be a wonderful feature for the attic Sanctuary. It may be worth planning to add those structural features in conjunction with new roofing installation.] 
  • Electrical upgrades 
  • Basement sealing and dehumidifying (environmental remediation) 
  • Window replacement as needed 
  • Kitchen and bath (2) remodels
  • Small kitchen installation for upstairs apartment Sanctuary 
  • Landscape architecture 
  • Exterior painting and repairs to siding or replacement of siding 
  • Interior painting 
  • Foundational interior design (lighting, fixtures)

As noted, any funds invested not immediately used for the purchase and renovation of the house at 273 S French Broad Ave, Asheville, NC will be committed to a Stewardship Fund, which will include operating reserves and maintenance+repair funds. 

Steward Investors will receive:

  • a Deed of Stewardship for the fraction/s of the property invested in
  • Membership in the The South French Broad Sanctuaries and Relational Arts Space Dispersed Visionary Network – which will be invited to contribute ideas, enthusiasm, connection, and practical skills and services to the process of creating this innovative living arts offering through structured collaboration, feedback, and contribution. 
  • Inclusion in The South French Broad Sanctuaries and Relational Arts Space directory of Steward Investors (not required) 
  • Special opportunities to collaborate and create this offering with local collective members and the larger community 
  • Automatic inclusion in a Sanctuary Space lottery which will open up 52 weeks of cost-free, full hospitality lodging in the Sanctuary apartment, and 36 weeks of lodging in the discretionary use Sanctuary room. Sanctuary stays may be used by Steward Investors, given away with collective approval of the recipient, or returned to the stewardship of the operating collective. Sanctuary stays entrusted to the operating collective will be used to provide temporary supportive, therapeutic shelter for women in recovery (and their children). Sanctuary stays may include liaison, referral, and accompaniment services to assist in securing safe, stable shelter and adjunct resources supporting whole health healing. Sanctuary stays may be sold with prior approval of the operating collective, with the understanding that Sanctuary stays may only be sold by auction and interested buyers must apply and be approved to bid. Fifty percent (50%) of the proceeds will be directed to the The South French Broad Sanctuaries and Relational Arts Space General Operating Reserve fund or the The South French Broad Sanctuaries and Relational Arts Space Community Assistance Fund. 
  • Co-Creator access to special Relational Arts experiences, and the opportunity to work with The South French Broad Sanctuaries and Relational Arts Space in developing activities & future offerings 
  • Asset fractions held by initial investors may be sold secondarily with prior notification made to the operating collective. Fractions may be auctioned for a set floor price reflecting increased property value and accrual of subjective value at minimum-bid auction with at least 20% of funds additional to the original investment amount returned to The South French Broad Sanctuaries and Relational Arts Space Community Assistance Fund. [Example: Initial investment of 5,000.00 (1/100) is auctioned for 20,000.00, resulting in 15,000.00 profit from initial investment, 3,000.00 of which would be returned to the The South French Broad Sanctuaries and Relational Arts Space.]

Faith R. Rhyne: https://www.linkedin.com/in/faith-rhyne-11651b53

Experimental Arts & Rogue Research by Faith R. Rhyne: www.imfinethankyou.net

So, yeah, I’m sorry to go on. 

I came over here and ended up scrolling waaaaay up the thread and reading this support discussion and it’s kind of overwhelming the #gratitude I am feeling to have come over here, ‘cause I am depersonalized af and my cognitive function is still all messed up from existing in redzone critical burnout in a mess of intense stressors for way too long. 

I’m a ‘mental health professional’ – (a peer support specialist, QMHP, MA, etc) – who is transitioning out of the maw of the nonprofit industrial complex, due to aforementioned critical burnout and my brain literally f*in refusing to do the work anymore, like can.not.

Hi…I am new here, and got a random notification of this latest post to the <#79798977305______> thread, which I hadn’t really checked out…so, I came over to say um, hi…@ and all…

@ – when I get scared about wtf is happening w/my brain, I remind myself of neuroplasticity & try to stay out of fear cause that makes whatever is happening way worse. 

my memory is really bad, too ~ but, in a splintery way, like sometimes (rarely) things are super clear/spot on, & throughout the day I’ll have brief events of my brain working (reminders of what it used to kind of feel like to be who I am ~ as I realize this -> having some feels)…most of the time it’s like everything that is happening in my mind space is me standing in the middle of a flooded library stunned, numbly looking around, occasionally picking up some soggy book, opening it to whatever page…

I had a major burnout/breakdown in March…probably actually started like a year ago, ten years ago (haha, so hard to pinpoint the causative event other than the stress of being the person I am in the life that I have in the world that I live in, a lot of dynamic causation, catalysts and mitigators.)

Anyway, I came over here & ended up scrolling waaaaay up the thread reading this support discussion. it’s kind of overwhelming the <#797989_____8337793> I am feeling to have come over here. 

I deal w depersonalization, too, & my cognitive function is still all messed up from existing in redzone critical burnout in a mess of intense stressors for too long. 

I am a self-taught differently-abled artist-researcher that has worked professionally in mental health and community-building organizations for a long time. I am a Peer Support Specialist, which means I have my own history w/ mental health/big-struggles-with-living.

Since 2009, I have been living kind of a double-life, ‘cause I have been doing a longitudinal art and autoethnography project basically on the downlow and now have a ton of artwork and writing and media experiments/communication research that I am ‘emerging’ with since I can’t work in the nonprofit industrial complex anymore and it is super important to me to feel totally alive and stoked and curious about what I’m doing, clear about why I’m doing it…really, art and ideas and daydreams about wrecking dysfunctional and oppressive systems through elegant innovations that redistribute power and reformulate values to center the rights of all sentient beings…well, that’s where I feel happiest and most alive, most like myself…so, that’s what I am going to be doing more of.

This is an experiment in layering cloud photos into short videos on Kinemaster. 

CLOUD WAKE 

CLOUD WAKE II

CLOUD WAKE III

CLOUD WAKE IV

CLOUD WAKE V

The goal of this work was initially to make ‘something like a slideshow’ for a single upload that is part of a Sevens Foundation Genesis Grant application, with the intent to show that ‘hey, I have a lot of beautiful and strange clouds that I would like to release into the speciality NFT market as cool looking avatars that are also artifacts of an actual and interesting story that has unfolded as part of a relationship with the internet – not an online relationship, but a relationship with the internet itself, with writing and posting and sharing observations, not knowing if anyone would ever read or see any of it. As it turns out, my work across several projects and the endeavor of trying to ‘figure out my life’ (blah, blah, etc. etc.) – has been hardly seen by anyone.

I am almost invisible.

There was a moment this afternoon, standing fully immersed in the subtly alternate possibly actually real reality I inhibit on a intermittent continuum…

On Oct 16, 2021, at 9:00 AM, Faith Rhyne <faithrhyne@gmail.com> wrote:

When I have written for a while, it always feels like there is too much and no fair starting place. 

Over the past months

two of them, to be precise

I have lost time, since…


this is the year, huh?

that all appliances break 

water heater, stove


big truck can’t get up

no backing no pulling, stuck

food warming in bags


re-load it all then 

these things happen, no real deal 

restore the old world


dirty fridge, duct tape 

cold air leaking from the seam

between inside, out


No lying, won’t do it

that was the problem, I see

I was lying. Wow.


Whole new injustice

making people lie 

forcing them to smile


when the truth is grim

obvious in sweating palms 

sick tight feeling there


dissonant grinding

inside of me all the time 

Lying lying lie


When I told the truth

they said I was lying then

named truth as a lie to me


What in the actual 

hell, no wonder I’m confused

no wonder, no lie


I’m confused. Really. 

You said I was lying then 

all the time, lying


What I saw: “Not real.”

Felt? Hahahaha, feelings. 

Those aren’t real either.


Everything mine

was a lie, everything me 

all manipulation


Games, fuckery, lies 

you told me that I was sick

I needed your help


All I want to do

now is tell the truth of who

is the liar here.


I don’t like lying

it makes me sick, all over 

myself, my inside


I was going to write a haiku series on the experiences of the past couple of months, during which the vast majority of my writing energy has been spent creating project design plans and social communique in various spaces. I joined a club, a small club. Very nice people. 

I joined impulsively, coming across the opportunity in the process of participating in another opportunity.

For months, I have felt hermetically sealed – encapsulated and separate from most human channels and flows of movement, participating only minimally – very, very isolated for the past few years, only family, only work, many people suffering, that consuming relationship – there was no time for art and easy talk, exploring the potentials of collaborations with friends.

I had no real friends. I had a family – but, I only exist insofar as my role defines me in my family members’ minds, and the aspects of who I am that either conflict with their role expectations (e.g. mothers should not be pomo experimental artists that hang out with interesting strangers discussing the operative dynamics of reality and the potential to simultaneously disrupt and heal through acts of great beauty and the creation of new questions to live in, new possible worlds to create while partaking in the joyful absurdity of existing at all as a person in a fucked up and beautiful world that is 4.5 million years old, mothers should not pierce their noses, mothers should not get upset, mothers should not care about anything but their children and should focus their entire fucking lives on the stewardship of their offspring but only if doing so adheres to the compulsory consumption of capitalist mom-culture and American youth culture which is a social and economic construction that shapes entire lives and potentials of both mothers and their children.) Father’s, too – I’m sure. All I can speak to is the mother part – which, for me, has basically been a total mindfuck.

I absolutely love my children and am so, so glad that they are in the world, and I wouldn’t change anything – really – except I probably would, because this whole mothering experience – which is of course eternal and which I participate in gratefully and with appreciation, but which also – thank God – conceptually transitions when one’s offspring reach ‘adulthood’ – the laughably arbitrary age of 18, in the United States, some subjective state of emotional, psychological, and financial independence autonomous in relation to the parent, which was an entity to oneself with purpose beyond the breeding of additional human beings on an already crowded planet with limited resources because we all want something to love and to be attached to and we want to buy all those cute baby clothes and have that cute baby and be a person who has their shit together enough to have a baby and take care of a baby and make a sunny wholesome life for a young human that you will love and steward into a purposeful and fruitful adulthood which you will continue to be a part of as you age and can, perhaps, even nurture a reciprocal stewardship in your old age, and your then-adult children will take care of you, not only accommodating you, but centering you and your care as you get old and die, just like you did with your parents because that is what people do, they take of their families, their clan. Tribe.

These ways of caring for our kin are written into our animal codes for survival and the body does not know it is expected to work outside the home, away from the family, or that the children will be dropped off before the sun rises to be cared for by strangers, and that the parents will be dealing with all kinds of personal stressors and challenges. The animal body doesn’t understand why the family fell apart under the duress of shepherding two somewhat difficult (let’s be honest here) young humans successfully into elementary school while both parents tried to work and deal with their own emergent adulthoods and the fact that they didn’t really get along very well in some basic ways relating to their personality types and approaches to living, recreation and social needs, parenting styles, all the things that would be obvious topics for two people who were planning to enmesh themselves with one another to discuss but that were not discussed or not discussed in a way that generated any sort of actual understanding of one another, as both parties were invested in a constructed view of the other partially comprised of attributes that were specifically highlighted as complementary of or meeting a need – conscious or subconscious – that had been previously unmet, perhaps by the respective parties’ parents themselves, who – if white and middle class from America – were likely victims of the reality-truncating news, sports, and weather regime of the United States governmental and informational ‘non-offensive’ entertainment media  c 1950~present…


Experimental short media made by layering photos and videos of clouds. I have been taking pictures of clouds for 11 years and am exploring ways to play with cloud photos as a medium in making new abstract and subtly expressive images. Here, I started off thinking about counterclockwise motion, Fibonacci spirals, and architecture and ended with camellias and the suggestion of a syncing at the end of this short piece, which took about 12 hours to make, not including the thousands of hours spent studying cloud forms and movements in nature, nor the 1/2 hour I spent recording this segment of guitar sounds in – I think – the key of D 10 years ago. Value is relative, as is time. Thus, I say: “Dread not, alternate camellia clock!” 

The idea of alternate clocks is something I consider a fair amount, though I have no notion just how much a ‘fair amount’ is or how it could be measured. I supposed this the gist of that song from RENT – how do you measure a year…but, all of those examples were tethered to human action, experience, and perception of value, and the song – ironically – reinforced the concept of a year by returning to it in chorus and refrain as a anchor, a set frame. 

I am not so good with time, but I very much enjoy studying clouds and considering light. The pink violet here is a tone I’ve been vibing with lately. 

Anyway this is all experimental and I will continue to experiment, so on we go. 

If you’re interested in other experimental endeavors in arts and letters, you can check out my developing portfolio site – which I am still working on. 

Thanks for checking this out. 

Have a wonderful wonderful day, ♥️,

FAITHRR 

Thoughts and Documents Regarding Crisis and Support Planning: 

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1K6ZiwNGFLajLJ5qFz8sbKmm6HqdY_p3YdRYXFm3m_uI/edit

—-

Maybe something that happens with most poets, eventually, is that the experience of an everyday and everymoment broad view of the multidimensional beauty and tragedy and pointless profundity of one’s existence, in general expansive scope inclusive of vast minutiae that are simultaneously mundane and singularly miraculous in the same phenomenal way that every molecule comprising life of Earth really, truly is…becomes impossible to convey or share with anyone in ways other than the humming resonance of mutual experiencing which itself is a dubious testament to whatever might be called understanding…and yet we all want to tell of our worlds, to know our worlds are real to others in the ways they are real to us, or at least acknowledged as being possible, recognized as being valid, not figments or conflations, but the real blood and guts and smoke and light of all the living and dying that the poet sees and has seen…how do you say that you are a person alone in a large room connected to other large rooms and the lamp is lit, fire is burning, one-eyed rescue cat a tucked-up form alongside the ashpan of the stove, puppies wandering in and out of the periphery of the fire-lit room, which you know glows warmly orange from the view on the street, that it looks – actually – as though the house may be on fire?

You’re sitting in your great-grandmothers chair, which may have been her father’s chair, though you don’t know for sure anything about who sat where a hundred years ago, how many people had thought deeply of the dead while sitting in this chair and you bend to pick up the littlest puppy, the pale female runt with a still-neonatal look about the eyes and an especially pitiful way of rolling over and looking beseechingly to be petted, to be held, to be nuzzled and kept warm on these days that have turned sudden and damply cold, a perfect entrance to November, bright leaves dripping fog, the arm full of almost frozen water, everything tightening in a little against the wind that you know is like a baby hurricane over the city, the slightest little storm cell spinning off from the walls of the land itself, this seam in the Earth that people have called many things, even names that have been forget, secret names and sacred names, family names with stories tucked in, places only you might know and ways of knowing you might know if you’re of the people of the land.


__ a__t_ah, I think 

Forgotten ways bring storm winds

breathe life to old names 


We live in so many different worlds and – really – I may have reached a critical mass of dimensionality this morning, in all my noticing and remembering in the early morning, which is and has been when I do what my practice may be – which is to wake up, and to sit outside, and to notice what seems to be rising in the morning, smells and sounds, the cast of light and breeze, how loud the air is against skin, warm or cold or sweetly perfect, always felt and reminding you to seek sun, find that warm spot on the stairs later in the day, when everything nocturnal has fallen asleep, despite the brightness, because of the light.

In the clarity of morning, I feel like an egg, a decoupage, a complex cell, and everything in me is warm and listening, watching the world wake up again and again, different everyday, never ever the same, not even for a second.

I like in-between times and in-between places.

I am interstitial in my relational preferences, not being anything but a space between, a space that can change, a space that is fluid like water, able to drift like air with variable impact and increasingly minimal will, as it seems I may have brain damage or perhaps have stumbled into an accidental state of being deeply authentic only by virtue of having lost the ability to mask or to figure out the complexities – the inevitable null conclusion – of masking strategy for social safety or connection, the broke level bars of her capacity to amplify, subdue, mitigate, regulate, mediate, emphasize, and play to certain facets of her being (none exactly inauthentic, but existing in the slant of omission bias and allowing people to believe certain things about her less from a spirit of endorsement than from fatigue in trying to make sure that people aren’t seeing her sideways, seeing her as only a slanted distort of whatever she might be as a person.)

My name is Faith and I live in Asheville – where I first connected with_______work through a free, drop in general talk on ancestral relationships, ritual, and healing, followed by a lovely brief practice. 

I attended with a friend, despite not really being ‘into’ the healing arts and spirituality ‘scenes,’ so to speak, because I am not really ‘into’ any scenes. I somewhat drift along. During the years I was in active relational proximity with the friend that introduced me to your work by inviting me to the talk at the medical offices off of the street they named Choctaw,

With the same friend, i also attended a group sound healing session in a closed room that involved whale sounds amplified through a phenomenally good sound system, as well as participated as a supporter in an earth burial and homecoming ritual at which I bonded with a wasp that had crawled into my friend’s body-warmed shirt while waiting for her to be ready to come out of the earth. When she put her shirt back on she began to yelp, and I saw the wasp quickly and pulled it out.

It didn’t sting me, but rather sat on my hand for a very long time as I progressed through the remainder of the ritual with my friend. Wasps and I tend to have a respect for one another, and are sometimes even companionable.

I have to admit that I had felt a bit skeptical about the practitioner, though suspended and dismissed the skepticism as my only indication that the practitioner was doing ‘shamanism’ rather than being a shaman was that they had blond hair, had intentionally pursued training and perhaps paid for their mentorship, and also had included an orange plastic toy snake in her central alter arrangement and plastic – to me – feels alive in ways that aren’t exactly alive, that are – actually – a little toxic at times, the energy of plastic.

I didn’t want to bring skepticism into the ritual, because that would close me off from experiencing the evening and would not allow me to connect with either the land or the night or my friend, whom I was – admittedly – a bit wary of connecting with, because they felt sticky and obscuring to me, as though they got into me and onto me in ways that I did not like, a certain cloying scent that stayed on her clothes for hours after she left her friend’s home. So, I didn’t want to be skeptical, but I wanted to be conscientious and perhaps even a bit cautious because you never know what ghosts might rise when you’re digging into the earth of the Appalachians.

The practitioner had a warm and intuitive way about them, a tending-caring energy that was lovely for the purpose of the ritual, which was the latest effort in a perennial series of efforts to remedy a disease of the spirit and disturbance of the microbiome caused by iatrogenic malfeasance, heavy metals, and a complex matrix of sensitivities and intolerances that shifted and tumbled into one another depending on an equally baffling mystery system of trial, error, and season. She didn’t know if her friend would ever come to a point of feeling well, or healed, or what that might mean for a person whose identity was so thoroughly tied to sickness.

I helped to dig the deep hole into the cold clay ground and helped to cover my friend’s body with dirt, sat with them in the backyard of a semi-rural suburb out by Leicester. In my pocket, I had a small bundle containing a scrap of bandana, a blanched placental cloud of crocheted twine, and some other small object that I do not remember all bound together with a single piece of my mother’s white-silver hair. “Give me a strand of your hair,” I asked-told her as I was leaving their house over in the eastern part of the county the day prior to the ritual, suddenly struck by a sense of importance that I have something of her for my part in the ritual, which was that of supporter, a sort of stand-in for a chosen family.

 I am not always a good friend in the ways people want me to be there for them, but I am very good at digging deep holes. 

Yesterday, the day before, yes…the day before, driving south on the same highway she had driven on for those years of going across the valley into the forest mountains, that small town that was a regular anchor point, a stitch – if you will – in the thread of where she went and how she paused, how long she stayed and why. 

Is it possible that every iteration of human society and belief system endlessly replicated the irony of believing that their way or code or law or gods are the one and only code, law, god, etc. Are humans doomed to be trapped in their own blinding myopia, even after they themselves subjugated others unto their beliefs, thus proving the mutability of ways and codes and laws and gods. 

By looking back across history, even the history of one’s own country, even in a new country like the United States and definitely in an old religion like Christianity, etc. (the Abrahamic religions), and see that things change, ideas change and practices change, people change and cultures change. Heroes become villains and fools will be sages. 

Why is there such a vicious clinging to the myth of eternal validity that we ascribe to our prerogatory and socialized perspectives of reality and conflations of truth? 

What, in the western world and especially in America, is so sanctified about a history that is only a few hundred years old and that is – ultimately – a history of brutal colonialism and lofty ideals undermined by the lust for dominance and wealth, a dominance over wealth, and what a human thing it is, to want to have enough, to want to have it all, to want to be in control of the things that give us power in our societies and economies – resources, assets, food, weapons. We are ingrained with tribal hierarchies and the lessons of place and purpose and punishment taught to our ancestors, whomever they were. Even the wealthy are punished in ways, but that is another line of thought corresponding to social learning and rigid codes of behavior and communication, gender based role expectations, etc. etc. and all the ways we come into to world with knowings of what to be afraid of in our half-feral, just-born animal bodies. Loud voices, the smell of fear in our mother’s sweat, the taste of it in the milk from her breast, an unknown knowing conveyed by subtle signal of fear communicated without language in the most simple terms of a racing heartbeat, a tightened hold on a child, a raised voice. We learn what to be afraid of, and these learnings – to which all humans are prone and vulnerable to by virtue of our shared species ancestry and the basic knowings of our nervous systems, taught over hundreds of thousands of years of fighting, fucking, and trying to stay alive in conditions more animalistically brutal than most modern humans could even imagine.

 As I travel through these mountains on the relentlessly cold grey and steadily raining days, surveying the fog-held rounds of the knobs and gaps that define the ways the land has slowly softened from the ancient toothy rocks pushing up from the ground as the substrates shifted over millions of years. 

It’s difficult for me to think about houses built to last in forests that are the almost miraculous still-endlessly-evolving phenomena of millions of years of fires and floods and cuttings and droughts, hard freezes and wet summers, the rise and fall of every.single.living.creature that ever.existed not only in the immediate 2 acre lots that have been cut into the sides of mountains whose real name we will never know, in that specific forest, but in every micromillimeter of living, breathing, dying Earth that touches its edges and merges one ecosystem to another…

I am a person who grew up on land that was old and that I was taught to see and to love as an entity filled with small lives all connected, the web of the nephila arching over the palmetto roots that lump and hump across the sandy soil, rough and rowdy, those brown fur roots, just like the hogs that nose through the soil, looking for grubs, for anything really. 

I watched that world be destroyed and paved over. 

There is a part of me that will never stop grieving, the images still in my head, pressing out like the gasp of fire fed by breeze, puff of pine smoke in the air, the growl of a Caterpillar – a sad, sad name for machines that kill caterpillars, machines that mimic the mechanics of small creatures that may eat small sections of a forest to destroy vast swathes of woods, rumblings and tearing, the atonal arrhythmic whine of chainsaw on top of chainsaw. The hot acrid smell of new asphalt and the flush across your chest when the construction workers hollered, whistled, made comments about you walking home from one of the houses in the subdivision, a brick and stucco boredom smelling of plaster and new carpet, hot black trampoline with pinching springs on the pine needled scrub that is the backyard along the fence that separates the neighborhood from the dock and the train tracks just beside it, the RXR that you saw everyday crossing the tracks on the dirt road that led to your home, the dirt road that is now only a stub, built over by houses most of it, the houses of people who would briefly be your friends, in the ways of middle school friendship, petty and full of salacious scandals, hilarity and indulgence, the in-between time of still being kids. What else were you going to do when half the town kids and kids from out at the smaller, older subdivision by the spit of land across a marsh out by the base, the nuclear submarine deployment and training facility that had spurred all the houses, brought the new kids, hiked up the cost of land, pressured re-zoning and increased taxes making it all but impossible to maintain and somehow, in some conversation you have never been told about, your father was introduced to the idea of selling the land that was called Shadowlawn even before your great-grandparents moved there in the 1940s because your great-grandfather was not able to live in the city anymore, had a nervous condition or something that still nobody has ever told you about, your father only mentioning his grandfather in brief cryptic allusions to despair and not knowing what to do after some timber consolidation contract had gone south, or something. You have no idea what the circumstances were that impelled your great-grandparents to seek 750 acres of land in rural South Georgia, a town barely on the map, not even on some maps, pine woods and swamp and small bluffs, marsh and old oaks, a branch off of Borrell Creek that you can take clear out to the St. Mary’s River and Reed’s Bluff, that small majestic crust of North Florida just nw of Yulee, the town where you turn left to go to the beach, which is where your grandfather had a house on the beach and a Cessna he was building, for reasons you never quite understood because you had no desire to fly in a plane that was built by someone you know because everyone you know seems very imperfect, and there is – for example – a rusty spot in the floorboard of the van where you can poke a pencil through the ragged opening and point down at the ground. 

The Coppertone bare-bottom girl and dog presided over the first glimpse of the beach, a postcard-like memory of the right turn onto Fletcher Avenue, Fernandina Beach, c.1983, the Atlantic always there. 

It is Monday morning now, though she doesn’t particularly feel the reality of that fact, isn’t sure if it is actually a fact, or if it just a concept that is broadly accepted as being a valid construct by which to order our lives, our schedules of working and education, which is required for working both practically in the learning of skills and tolerances for tedium and learned powerlessness, helplessness in the expectations of Monday. It occurs to her, briefly as a flash in the roll of awareness as the sky begins to lighten and her hands are cold like they were in the desert, a place – also – that has a slippery sense of day and time, the alternate clock of the sun beating down at midday, pulling the moisture from your body, the air itself drinking your sweat so that your skin becomes dry, begins cracking like the crust of the Earth that you ruin with your footsteps, that she should be concerned by her lack of caring about Monday, not even a lack of caring – more like a forgetting, the day and it’s expectations existing as an afterthought, something she must remind herself of and that feels like a distraction, almost an annoyance, if she cared enough to be annoyed – which she does not. There is not even a lack of caring. The fact of Monday is simply null, and she recognizes that this is problematic in the world that she lives in, the world is clock-set in the ways that it is. 

For the past few days, she has considered the course she is interested in signing up for, and also her reluctance to be listening, listening, listening, having to speak in some syntax that makes sense, to hem in her speech, be concise, ask in generalist questions, do not overshare, do not take up too much space, be aware of blindspots and privileged perspective, exist as a student, pay several hundred dollars she does not have. She doesn’t know if she will write the teacher or not. The course starts today and although she doesn’t especially mind that – if she were to reach out – this may be one of those situations in which she appears to be a dismissible hot mess that is disrespectful of people’s time and attention, but she also knows that she is actually interested in what the teacher has to say, despite finding it difficult to be in human-to-human listening space because she is often in other listening spaces. 

She has had several experiences of listening to this teacher and hearing the voices from other spaces in the resonance of the teachers words. She recognizes a sincere, humble humanity in the teacher, a safety in the energy around them. 

It is necessary for her to have human teachers that understand that she prioritizes being taught by wind and dogs and dreams and her own ancestors, all the ghosts she has around her and has had around her for as long as she can remember, probably from before she was born, the small specific facets of light, calibrated rememberings of who her people were in all the times they lived, and all the times that surely she must have been mingling with the dead as she was half-dead herself, asleep in the hospital, secured to the bed for as long as it took for her young restless body to heal the deep rupture of her blood-making organ, her spleen.

She has only a few memories of the months of her first major life threatening injury, her inoperable broken spleen on Christmas Day, 1982. Two years later, she almost died again, also by gravity – as if the ground were hungry for her, always pulling her bones down to the soil, breaking them, bruising them, grinding small crystals of what could be called sand but what may be bone, what may be tree, what may be rare jewels from distant mountains scraped across the miles and miles by the shifting lands and waters that created the place she called home for many years and which she may still call home, the rivers and marshes and east-west sky and storms and ocean smells down in that place that flows out from the River Styx, deep in the land of trembling earth, the Okefenokee itself, currently being assaulted by extractive activities by the Twin Pines Corporation based in B’ham, Alabama – something to do with toothpaste, some mineral.

There is no possible way to say all that she needs to say in 15 minutes. She feels a crush of overwhelm, sad bite of reality. How much there is to do. As soon as the day breaks she is tired, a defiant retreating laziness that usually sends her back to bed for her morning sleep, after she wakes up so early, several hours before light to write or say hello to her friends in the only social media platform that she is currently participating in, which is a small network of artists on Discord, to look at art and to realize what she must do, every day damned to realize again that she doesn’t especially care that it is monday, that she has a meeting, that she has a deadline. Multiple deadlines. There are people who want to talk with her, people who want to know if she is okay. 

She is totally fine, though she is gravely facing the facts of who she is and her inclinations, the times she feels most at ease in existing, the times it’s not just a horrible chore that she has to get through, show up for, be effective in. She is facing facts. 

In the talk last week, the last teaching in the online course she signed up for but hardly engaged with except for the last day, which she was determined to attend and set an alarm for and then forget and then remembered and was certain she was precisely where she needed to be as she logged on slightly late, being that person. Dogs all in the background because that is what she has been doing, tending to her animal family, this last household-based animal family that she will ever steward and be a part of. She will never have another household-bound animal family and she is in the process of bonding with the scrappy quadrant of new energies that is the rescue dog adopted in March, the found very sick feral kitten in some summer month, a cloudy day, warm. The two sisters of the rescue dog, the product of the mother dog’s next litter, living outside and eating garbage, bonded as though they were one dog. 

She has been making short videos of layered cloud forms because she finds them beautiful. 

https://youtube.com/shorts/MCJJSiSMNB0?feature=share CLOUDWAKE small genesis (and others) 

Several times a day she records herself speaking about the set of circumstances she finds herself in – forgetting about the relevance of Mondays, slipping blithely into deep personal financial crisis, surrounded by beloved animals that are safe friends to her, safe family to her, who – she is now realizing – has been ½ feral for much of her life, the animal in her – the child in the woods, the child who was not allowed to run, who was suspended from learning, disrupted from learning, who could not learn, who could not see, ½ blind until age 8, always getting hurt, a speech impediment that was especially humorous to other children, a traumatic experience of severing and racism in kindergarten that seeded in her a deep, naive confusion about what in the actual hell was going on in this world outside of the plexiglass geodesic dome back in the woods, all the sad reminders of why she must never, ever repeat anything her great-grandmother says, because her great-grandmother – beloved as she is – is a huge racist in the worst ways of the Old South that she was born right at the edge of, Georgia, c. 1894. 

Is it any wonder she was confused and skeptical about the validity of adult views and the integrity of adult decisions as she watched her father sell of land and arrange for streets to be paved, the ways they responded to her grief over seeing the world she was connected to as a creature and the world that she knew as home, as sanctuary, be scraped away, torn away? 

What can she say, st this point in the morning – when she is supposed to be having a meeting at 9:30 and she still hasn’t fully oriented to what she is doing…or rather, she has, and what she is doing is nothing at the moment, other than thinking and writing and considering what she needs to do over the next few days and…

As quickly as that, the conveyor of the day starts. 

The next morning, she begins again with the thinking of what she might say, imagining herself sitting down and speaking – the tilted circle of a loose-fitting ring light staring at her as if cocked-head, asking what she is actually trying to do there, wearing that hat and speaking like she has something to say, what is she talking about. The fear of not making sense, of the dead-flat space between her and another person’s misunderstanding or simply not understanding what she is talking about, what she is saying. It has been her problem, the inability to be understood, rather than a simple difference in language, a difference in thinking and seeing. Leaps in logic. Mind blind. Florid, forgetting that gestures make no sound, and that nobody knows what your tone is meant to convey and you wonder if you warble, like a voice underwater, hellllllllllllo you screamed into the snorkel, broadcasting a push of small waves on the wind of your breath to strain through the blue of the pool as something like a voice, something like a greeting. 

It is several hours later, since she woke up at 4:00am, excited to be in the dark pre-dawn, that interstitial time. 

She has fed dogs and cats, swept floors, brushed her hair for a very long time, rebraided it. Watched the sky turn lapis azul, a morning twilight with Orion having slid all the way across the southern sky, shining bright through the silhouettes of trees that the small barks from young dogs cut through, bounding voices toward the figures moving along the street, through the dark. 

Sometimes there is a commentary narrating experience, the speaking of steps to sweeping the floor, the remembering of the dust pan upstairs and the forgetting of the broom, the singing to animals and tumbles into some facet of their care, some tending to or settling, as small creatures need a lot of that sort of thing, tending and such. Settling. It becomes a sort of clockwork, the clatter of metal bowls in the cold kitchen, running the water until warm. Wasteful, yes, but cold wet food is no good on a cold day, and water makes a sort of sauce, almost a broth, slurry of crumb and oil, warm like soup. 

Walking the elder dog, who is still very much a puppy, she saw the unmistakable form of a figure asleep on the sidewalk, and — 

It is now two days later. Two days since she saw the sleeping form of the girl who walks down the middle of the street, thin and ageless, bare feet or flip flops. draped w a blanket, a towel, a sweatshirt – some grubby thing hanging off of her as she moves down the street as a child half-asleep in a midnight hallway. Sometime she will raise a hand, call to a car. Sometimes accept a ride from a man who only messes with the really crazy girls, a man who only likes the girls he can do anything to, the gone girls, women who were babies and women with daughters, women who’ve turned to ghosts on this street. 

She knew the sleeping form was the girl because of the cracked brown sole of one bare foot edging out from under the once-white poly fleece blanket, the kind they sell at grocery stores on the end caps this time of year, when it starts to get cold. 100% Fleece. Made in China. A simple band of glossy plastic around choked up around the bounding softness of blue, red, white like soft snow, beige like the nondescript comforts of old age. New blankets for the season. 

The dog walking with the woman was surprised by the form on the sidewalk, looked up from his smelling around a small holly hacked into a shrub ensconcing the metal sign stake marking the bus stop in front of the new middle school, almost 5 years now since the old school was torn down, a baseball field where the small front parking lot used to be, where she walked her son on the second day of 7th grade to vomit on the front walk and then return home, where the lower floors were dark and yellowing, shop class and band, storage. The vacuum silence of classroom instruction time in session, hallways surrounding a small simple square of shaded green grass, overgrown and unused, now somewhere under the new parking lot, where the woman had seen the fox in the very early morning last winter when the track was still open and she went before dawn everyday to run in clockwise circles and practice breathing only through her nose, practice only moving, focus her attention only on her breath, the look of the tops of trees sliding by as silhouettes, to only breath and only move and just watch what comes up in the blur of morning thinking, solemnity of intuition as footsteps in the dark and knowing the nagging was only the truth of what she needed to do and what she wanted to do, which was to be alone so that she could pay attention to the world in the way that she needs to, could be present in her work in the way that she needs to. That is what she learned running around in circles watching the day break in whatever way it might break, as sun or rain, frozen ground and slippery track, a whole series of seasons telling her the same truth every morning.

The track has been closed for months, and now there are dogs in the morning, a slip back toward the life of being beholden to the needs and tending of a quadrupedal family in her home, an animal family. She intended only to get an additional cat – a friend for the last remaining member of the prior iteration of her animal family, a post-feral kitten.  

{Interlude: She considers the phrase post-feral, prefers peri-feral, the state of being in the process of becoming feral, and also like peripheral, which is what Perry Farrell from Jane’s Addiction had played with in his name, but yet totally different in that the peri- and feral in periferal are not just homonyms for peripheral, but also have a meaning. }

2 thoughts on “Entities in Relation

  1. https://docs.google.com/document/d/1A9L4ppgYtq3F3Qhhx9OdvyAlSsixrKieE8TVh2izBQc/edit

    Omg – having 3 dogs under 1 year is such a bewildering situation to have stumbled into…I’m not getting much done beyond necessities, but that’s giving me a real clear perspective on what’s necessary ~ and my house is actually cleaner, cause nothing keeps ya in the material and immediate like operating a small dog daycare in your house 24/7 while also trying to be a worker and a mom (it’s hilarious that my 17 yo was all *of course I’ll help take care of the dogs* ~ and then is like *omg mom I’m so busy [teen laying on couch snap chatting] with school (1 class) and work (2 days a week at an ice cream shop where she listens to music and talks to her friends and literally spins around on the counter chairs when no one is in there :rofl:) ~ it’s so funny and endearing. It would probably be less funny and endearing if I weren’t fully loaded w oxytocin at all times from puppy hugs and adorableness. From the outside, it might seem like I really took things in the wrong direction w the semi-decision/surrender to circumstance to steward a small pack of dogs, a family of dogs, in my home while also creating and activating the infrastructure of my sovereignty and liberation. Three young dogs definitely impair one’s movement..

    (imagine a person on a sidewalk, multiple lines of bright leashing to a swirl of energy tangled and still moving around the feet as cars drive by and people get work done. The person is looking around and also standing very still, watching the lines and wondering who sees what is happening, wonders at the conclusion they must inevitably come to, somewhere in the territory of ‘*haha, that person sure has their hands full…” :slight_smile:to “*hmmm, bit off a little more than you can chew, didn’t’cha.*” ~ :rolling_eyes::poop::unamused: to “*what a crazy, irresponsible person trying to have all those dogs! :man_police_officer_tone1::no_entry_sign:)

    Yet, somehow, I am happy, and (probably naively) confident that I can make this work, despite the odds that it will not work – that I will not be able to provide the structure and leadership to assemble a functional pack that is integrated into the activities of the household in such a way that the household does not become solely the domain of dogs and their unchecked animal instincts to gang up on chasing cats under cabinets or barking at the neighbor they see everyday because it is fun to bark if you are a dog, it feels good and even important and you don’t even know why – exactly – you are barking, or ~ at least at first ~ even that you are barking, only that something caught your eye, your ear, your sharp-scenting nose and the impulse erupts from your thought tuned to the pitch of your surprise, your wondering, your level of delight or fear, you let the noise out in a rhythm and your whole head explodes with the sound coming up from the deepening chamber of your chest, the strong-necked throat you were born with, and somewhere behind your fixed eyes, your focused stare at the object your yelping and growling and warning and yipping and begging to bark bark bark to get get get ready ready ready now now now, synapses fire in a rushing stir, just like the wind that you are barking at blows across the leaves of the tree you see everyday, when it moves like it moves in the wind, when it makes that rattling noise, that rustling noise closing in all around and sending out new waves of scent, yesterday’s rain warming in the sun of a new day, the dampness of the nest the catbird’s left hidden, old feather and mite, dead grasses from the air, acid tang of the mother’s meal twice digested and long left by the fledglings, one of whom fell, and could not fly again, but you don’t know this – or maybe you do in the scent of dirt and leaves and drying bones under the broken clay pot on the roof of the shed, where the person who says, again and again in their own barking voice *no barking no barking no barking* had left the fallen bird for the mother bird to try to help, the mother bird who hopped and cried, branch to branch and frantic in the wisteria, the thin branches of young oak, about the fallen baby, but who would not come near while the person stood there on a chair, baby bird panicked into stillness, eyes alarmed and translucent new beak only barely opening, closing breathing fast and light like flying, *here is your baby, here is your baby, please take your baby back, somehow somehow, help your baby to fly back to you, hop with it, lead it, please come get this baby* first a chair and then a ladder, the hand outstretched and filled with leaves, the fading small assemblage of skin thin like paper, blue veins just like your own, the awkward proportions of initial limbs, expanding frames, dusting of dead skin and slick of seeming oil at the crown, and the scent of a hand caught between the teeth of feathers, rubbed in with just a glance of palm, ruining the young bird, marking it as different, and the person did hope that perhaps if she left the small bird on the roof of the shed, shaded by a broken ceramic pot, a bed of cool-but-not-cold leaves in the small altar facing south, makeshift narthex to the open air church of dying children and grieving mothers that through the tiny hole in the bottom of the pot, sound of their mourning is just like a shaft of light calling.

    It sounds, to the dying, like a song.

    The signature of that small death stays at the edges of the vining dome behind the house, rises on warm days that heat the tin roof of the shed, push out the vapors of bones turned to dust turned to the tiny diamonds held in spheres, all the water we can’t see, but that you read like a map of what lives and what dies, whether there is fear, poison, a code of knowing that needs no words, that is summed up by you as a simple pause, a lifted head, a curious smelling of the breeze.

    • When friends just keep on asking for grant writing and don’t much ask, or seemingly care, how you’re doing…and instead of being stressed, you calmly re-state your boundaries and your previous request for the info you need (which was responded to with a minions meme, which is fine – but, is not the information you had asked for and need, and you really would like to help them out and think the work is important, but you also can’t f w anything that involves writing beautiful grants for hundreds of thousands of dollars to fund projects that organizations are not able (due to lack of capacity, lack of specific key skills, incompatible project/organization structure, lack of basic organizational infrastructure/basic operational processes and policies, etc. etc.) to implement or operate or sustain in fidelity to the scope of work and specific methodologies that funds are allocated to support, a project that exists mostly in someone’s head and which has not been put through the rigors of due diligence in considering, discussing, drafting, (even the lightest, Google-based) researching, and sussing out for how much of the project is connected to one’s individual over-compensatory savior ego and/or unmet needs and/or nonprofit-hustle style avarice and opportunism.

      ——-
      Hey, hope you’re both doing well. I’m grateful for the chance to re-connect.

      I have some priority deadlines over the next several weeks that I can’t be distracted from and would also be happy to spend a bit of time talking w you about how this opportunity might support both ____ and _____.

      However, before I schedule time to potentially discuss, could you please send:

      a link to any information on the interpersonal violence survivors program

      a brief summary of where you’re @ w ____ – even forwarded emails or a photo of handwritten notes of what’s been discussed and with whom is fine

      forward any info or documents you’ve sent them about the work you’re doing and what you want to do w dht support

      That would be really helpful (and necessary) for me to be able to determine what would be involved and my capacity to support.

      I’m still working on getting my own faithrr, llc website up – which will give some info about:

      – the framework through which I intend to provide pro bono consultancy & grant writing to viable, sustainable, and transformation-aimed projects or organizations

      – what I need in order to be able to work w folks for maximum impact of resources (including my time, and emotional/cognitive/spiritual energy as a person who is differently-abled and who must prioritize developing a stable foundation to support my own well-being if I am going to be able to show up for the work that the metaverse – and all the gods and ancestors and elements therein – asks me to do, because that is my utmost priority and my most true vocation.)

      I will be able to provide additional information about ways I may be able to support grant writing or project development/sustainable design consulting needs for select start-ups when I get my site up.

      There will be audio info available, or a video message – in case people can’t read a bunch of stuff.

      It’s mostly just basic info I need before considering a commitment to supporting a project, and all things that an org or individual seeking funding will need to have on hand anyway.

      Thanks for your time in reading this.

      Hope the season is shaping up well.

      I’m doing really fantastic, by the way. Setting boundaries and doing my work. ♥️♾🙏

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