September 27, 2009 § Leave a comment

funny how my heart was half yearning half fearing to see your face on those pictures, developed from my disposable camera you made fun of, sitting in that envelop from my mailbox. and what did i expect, of course every single picture you would be should be meant to be in didnt come out. blurry and gray and empty. of course. thats how its always been w you. you refuse to be anywhere but in my memory. i will not have a single picture of you. even when i secretly want to.
can you please leave me alone? im watching a preview of the office and you are there w your gun show jokes. i listen to imogen heap on youtube and you pop out w that jeff buckley hallelujah song. i tried to read my city planning articles and you show up in my head w the sunset and the tattoo and the rain and the drive. can i be without you for a second? please?
its unfair. and you are being cruel. i never asked to feel whatever i feel for you. you simply showed up. ben and jerry ice cream at midnight. made me say things i still dont know whether i shouldve said or not. a year and half later too many miles between us hundred txts slow emails counted days together. i know we are not going to be. and finally i swallow it. except the taste doesnt go away. i wonder if every kiss from now on will remind me of what could have been.
tell me. later. way later. when we both get married happily. children and grandchildren. be in my life. tell me then. that you saw me in every picture you took.

September 21, 2009 § Leave a comment

i remember the whole debate of right vs privilege in activist circles and w conservative christians. that particular conversation came up in the topic of prop 8. but i want to talk about public education — more like higher education bc the “public” part was whats contested here. should higher education be public? — at this particular moment.
as im reading about pauls letters to the galatians on gnosticism and their relevance to jewish identity for my diaspora studies class at 6am, drinking my coffee, actually really enjoying doing this assignment despite it being super late/early, i fully understand my privilege, this privilege. the accessibility and the ability to be a full time student, to take this amazing class, to politicize myself, to live out the complexities of the world, to blog about such experience in the midst of my epiphany. what a privilege!
wait does this mean some ppl deserve it and some dont? those who worked hard enough to get to this point in higher education, took sats scored 4.9 gpa did debate team president volunteered at childrens library every week single handedly saved the world shining brightly on their transcripts, have earned that privilege. and those who didnt, bc they slacked off didnt care about their future whatever idk these stories never really get told, of course dont deserve to have what i have. such is the definition of privilege america speaks of. meritocracy. american dream. horatio alger rags to riches. if you work hard you can pull yourself up by the bootstraps. performance gospel. good grades good jobs good life in white picket fenced two stories house with kids and a dog in suburbia. fuck you anti affirmative action
privilege is like grace. of course no one deserves it. but we are given. not based on what we do, but who we are. as first made in the image of God fallen yet still beloved to death and promised into glory as co-heirs w Christ. and by His love what once was freely given then becomes a right. right not for slaves, no. for sons and daughters.
translated to my present — and it MUST be translated bc one, i believe in isaiah 61:1-2 and two, for those verses to happen i gotta know who the poor the brokenhearted the captives and the prisoners are — grace, which was once privilege now right (before you stone me for heresy, let me clarify that this right aint about entitlement based on my works to earn salvation but about accepting the freely given undeserving grace that changes me from being a slave to a daughter), looks like affordable and democratic higher education. bc that privilege should be now a right.
what do we have that we did not receive? im not naive. i know about separation of church and state. i wont cant shouldnt expect the world to abandon its law of you reap what you sow and to operate under Gods law of grace. thats heaven on earth i want to see, and though thats where we are headed, sin is real consequences are real, flesh is real. im not talking about giving out exam answers so we can all play not study or communist salary for both workers of three hrs and of ten hrs (though the parable of vineyard workers in matthew may say something different…) i want to talk about leveling the playing field so that everyone EVERYONE has at least a chance for a shot at privilege. and the playing field is not even at all.
uc budget cuts thanks to decades of irresponsible financial stewardship (so much more to say here but thats for another day), krn am straight female running hard after Jesus by choosing to place myself in the middle of queers ppl of color third world liberation front allies low income ab540 students community organizers and even tree hugging white anarchists all into zen buddhist yoga and shit, post-racial (really???) post 9/11 president barack hussein obama fighting for health care reform when ppl call him socialist muslim unamerican whateves. these, and more, are my present into which privilege/right becomes translated. students, defined as those who want to learn even if they have yet to realize that they want to learn bc they are on the lower end of the playing field, have a right to the privilege of higher education. money does not decide for them whether they are going to college or not. skin color does not decide for them. legality of immigration status does not decide. physical mental disability does not. gender or sexuality sure doesnt. human beingness does.
if you are made in the image of God, then you deserve you have a right to pursue privileges of reading about pauls letters to the galatians on gnosticism and their relevance to jewish identity for your diaspora studies class at 6am, drinking your coffee, actually really enjoying doing your assignment despite it being super late/early. and no power on earth can stop you.
so all the haters out there who still lie to me about how the playing field has been leveled, watch out. the fights so on. im a good fighter. im here to win. starting w this thursdays walkout.
ok back to actually doing my reading and paper. due in 4 hrs!!!

September 21, 2009 § Leave a comment

im sorry that you are in love
im sorry that i broke your heart
im sorry that i had to be the other girl
so sorry so sorry im so sorry
i really wish that we had met in a different context, when/where i could love you better
because i want to
i want to love you
i really do

September 8, 2009 § Leave a comment

used to love this song by jump little children
forgot about it, didnt occur to me at all during europe, but then now after about two weeks back in berkeley, as im reading about the ethics of translation in its relation to diaspora studies an hr before sunrise, the lyrics make all the sense in the world:

in the shadows of tall buildings
of fallen angels on the ceilings
oily feathers in bronze and concrete
faded colors, pieces left incomplete
the line moves slowly past the electric fence
across the borders between continents

in the cathedrals of new york and rome
there is a feeling that you should just go home
and spend a lifetime finding out just where that is

in the shadows of tall buildings
the architecture is slowly peeling
marble statues and glass dividers
someone is watching all of the outsiders
the line moves slowly through the numbered gate
past the mosaic of the head of state

in the cathedrals of new york and rome
there is a feeling that you should just go home
and spend a lifetime finding out just where that is

in the shadows of tall buildings
of open arches endlessly kneeling
sonic landscapes echoing vistas
someone is listening from a safe distance
the line moves slowly into a fading light
a final moment in the dead of night

in the cathedrals of new york and rome
there is a feeling that you should just go home
and spend a lifetime finding out just where that is

September 3, 2009 § Leave a comment

voyager dust

when they arrive in the new country,
voyagers carry it on their shoulders,
the dusting of the sky they left behind
the woman on the bus in the downy sweater,
i could smell it in her clothes
it was voyagers dust from china
it lay in the foreign stitching of her placket
it said: we will meet again in beijing,
in guangzhou. we will meet again.
my mother had voyagers dust in her scarves
i imagine her a new student like this woman on the bus,
getting home, shaking out the clothes from her suitcase,
hanging up, one by one, the garments from the old country
on washing day my mother would unroll her scarves
she d hold one end, my brother or i the other,
and we d stretch the wet georgette and shake it out
we d dash, my brother or i, under the canopy,
its soft spray on our faces like the ash
of debris after the destruction of a city,
its citizens driven out across the earth.
we never knew
it was voyager dust, it said:
we will meet again in damascus,
in aleppo. we will meet again.
it was syria in her scarves.
we never knew it
now it is on our shoulders too

1. i didnt write this
2. yes we will meet again

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