Monday, June 25, 2007

Girl In A Coma

I heard about this great girl punk band, Girl in a Coma, and fell instantly. They are from San Anto! They should have been playing at the gay pride fest - they are really good. And their videos are genderqueer/questioning/feminist - well done. Even better, they are backed by Joan Jett's label. Sweet Joan Jett.

Here's one of my new faves:

Road To Home-Girl In A Coma


I have slept all week. I've not slept great but I have slept and I am so thankful for it. Of course, I did not write but you can't have it all!

I especially thankful for the sleep because my work has been increasingly demanding since I'm leaving the department for another. Add to that my child's recent expectant behavior (it is her birthday - that's her reasoning) and a test on Thursday and I had to give in to sleep.

So by 10 or 11 I've been the good girl and gone to bed.

I felt better this week, not just because of sleep but because I was able to tell a number of people what it was I really wanted in my life, what kind of people and how I couldn't feel less than totally free and so I couldn't conform to others ideas or expectations.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Delhi Micaela Reyes Boitel

My baby is 8 today. She's so fresh and mature looking, it kills me!

I got an email this morning about how we (Delhi and me) have been named "family of the month" at Family Pride. Believe it or not. Here's the link.

I just think about Mica (as we call her when we aren't asking her to complete her chores - it's Delhi Micaela then) as that tiny kid with a huge guitar who played with Lourdes Perez. Here's a link to my memory of it.

Tuesday, June 19, 2007

call for submissions

Some really great mujeres in the RGV are putting this together. Send your work!

Café Revolución Presents:Voices Against Violence! Zine
Second issue

Deadline: July 1, 2007

Voices Against Violence! Zine is accepting submissions for the second issue. Please send in your essays, poetry, personal accounts, artwork & photography to be included.
What is the Voices Against Violence! Zine? A small publication, chapbook style, with writings from people in the community who have been affected by domestic violence as well as survivors of domestic violence.

We encourage the public to submit because domestic abuse affects the community as a whole. The Voices Against Violence campaign, part of Café Revolución, is a series of events and workshops throughout the Rio Grande Valley that helps break the silence on domestic violence, encourage others to come forward and weave a collective consciousness in our community.

Send submissions & questions to:

For more information, scope out:

Monday, June 18, 2007


I felt like such a fraud when I entered this weekend. I haven't completed the writing I've been wanting to, haven't completed even cleaning the house!, and felt as though I was holding myself back, wasn't allowing a clear view for anyone, even myself. I really felt like some dark cut of glass - transparent but with this coloring that doesn't let you decipher everything.

I was told by someone last week that they were checking on me by checking on my blog. This isn't all of me, I realized. This is very little. I mean, I've been up to so much, there have been so many changes that I can't keep up with them. Not in a physical way but mentally. It seems all these things in my life are having a tremendous impact on me.

For instance, I would not have thought that taking 6 little girls out for my daughter's birthday would have made me feel so feminist and capable of awaking young minds. And, conversely, would make me want to have more children so deeply.

Or, having a peach for breakfast on Friday that blew me away with its texture and smell. I haven't been awake in my body for a while so I was taken aback by such an incredible thing: dirt and humidity and sun and perfume and musk all at once. Or, in going to lunch with a faculty member here - the Indian food we ate intoxicated me. I love my body very open to experience. The textures and tastes filling me. It can be overload but it empowers too - and not just my writing.

I did settle down some after Carol and Lilia's arrive Friday evening. We went to go see Gaytino!, a performance piece by Dan Guerrero, son of the "father of Chicano music", Lalo Guerrero.

Conversations with my sister friend Carol this weekend let me talk something out - always helping me see more of something long before I would have on my own (mostly because of avoidance or denial). I always felt this dichotomous idea that I had to choose to be in a relationship or choose my creativity.

While my creativity is by no means destructive (i.e. Sylvia Plath), I've felt it spinning a little beyond my control. I can manage it but wonder if, given some foundation, it might come out more tactile. Right now it feels like a fire in me that threatens to take everything in the air and make it something else.

I'm mis-saying because it is not destructive - I just wonder if, with more avenues to express myself, I might be able to keep the emotional fuel of my creativity in check. That this might also encourage better sleep and more consistent self-care (right now I'm eating one end up eating one meal a day and way too many cups of coffee).

And while it's not specifically an intimate relationship but more like connections with people that can aid this, I of course think about relationships. Since moving here, this is the most personable I've been. I'm really feeling available, open, transparent. Or, at least trying for transparency. I have reminded myself people will like me if I'm this way - and if they don't, at least I wasn't lying and they weren't interested in some part of me that was not complete truth.

Before the gay pride festival on Saturday, Carol and Lilia and Delhi and I went to Casa Chiapas for lunch. The festival was sweet, much smaller than ones I've been to in San Francisco and Austin but also very community-oriented - no entrance fee, lots of community booths, local talent performing. Most of the larger ones do out of town talent and charge $10 to get in. We didn't get there until 5 p.m. or so and so I was surprised I didn't see more of the people I knew there. In looking at the website they were there - I guess I arrived too late. I did see a former co-worker from when I worked at the San Antonio Symphony. I knew she was family but I think I surprised her because she didn't clock me that way.

At Casa Chiapas, I felt all Kitchen Table Press, we were talking about defining as queer vs. lesbian vs. bisexual and how neither world cares for those who are not "gold-star lesbians". That was a huge discussion for me that I don't want to talk about now.

So, I felt a little better by the time the mujeres left late Saturday. Still lots to process and I would like to talk a little more about it. Of course, despite my increased socialness, I find myself alone tonight. . . and what I have in my head is way too big for some shallow conversation.

Thursday, June 14, 2007

my niece

Well, here she is everyone - Deja Matilda, my niece.

See, she does look like me! I'm trying not to make a "that's what you get face" but my brother said, over and again, that he didn't want his baby coming out looking like me. Hmmm.

Con mas ganas - she even has my curly locks! I'm already whispering tips on how to manage the untameable hair.

My mother said I could trade my child in for this one since mine looks like my brother!

pull my finger

Well well, someone's finally come out about the gay bomb. I think they did their testing in several major metropolitan areas a couple of years back. Talk about "don't ask don't tell".

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

cafecito y conversacion al estilo David y Bathsheba

Sometimes together, sometimes separate... Cliffy spent last night. Her household was crazy and, with Delhi staying at my mom's because of late nights working or class, I really didn't want to go to an empty house. Usually I love the opportunity but not lately. As is often between Cliffy and me, we seem to help make transitions easier.

Truth is I have had relationships on my mind - I think I've done this discussion before on this blog. At this point i should just reference previous entries rather than reiterate my damage.

More truth: I was told goodbye by a new friend yesterday. He had great compliments and told me I was amazing. It's nice to know I have viewable traits but it seems to hurt me more than honor me when I'm left standing alone.

I didn't complete my art piece for Esperanza's queer exhibit. I don't know how much of a part of the queer community I want to be a part of here. It disappoints. Defines you on your behalf. Does not listen. I attempted creating a homage to my coming out as a 5th grader so long ago, including who it was I fell in love with (my mother's best friend, a potter), what I was having dreams about (marrying a woman with longer white hair (scares me to think it might have been my ex wife, Ya Vez!), becoming a full time writer and having children), and what I hoped for (freedom - yes, even then).

My childhood house was not so free - we were exiles in the city/state/country/male world. All this became too much in my mind and I could feel that blending of my creativity that I try to keep separate: sewing, writing, painting, furniture building, cooking, sex, emotional expressions - all one jarbled thing too hard to swallow.

So Cliffy, knowing I haven't been sleeping, followed me to bed. I tried going to bed early. I've always been the kind that gets tired early and, if i got to bed right when I feel it, I can sleep pretty well. But if that momentary feeling passes me, I'm awake again, hyper alert until, like right now, I'm awake at 1:30 in the morning.

Cliffy was so sweet, rubbing my head. I was able to sleep, even if I had the same dream I've been having all week: these men (mostly), Africans mostly, who were criticizing me. I thought they might be artists and that they didn't want me in their circle. I couldn't figure it out, especially since I get along great with those who are not from this country - some 3rd world woman connection.

Before I went to sleep Cliffy told me that I carried a lot of creativity, that that is what didn't let me sleep. It hurt because here I am feeling that I don't do enough with my talents while at the same time holding myself back because, partly, I really believe that I already make it impossible to be matched. And I'd be lying to myself if I said I didn't want family and a partner and this whole mad scene. No, it won't follow a typical relationship but it will be one - in my mind anyway.

I've been reading more about Edna St. Vincent Millay (Vincent her friends called her). I told Cliffy that was exactly what i wanted. that she could write feminist work and still write about her individual journey and her lovers and it was all powerful. Plus, she was openly bisexual, free to express herself with a man who was at a point in his life where he could put his work aside and help her. There's my dream. Yes, I'm jealous as hell. and I adore Vincent now.

Miguel called me as i was getting out of class tonight and I met him for coffee. We are starting to make the coffee gathering a regular thing. I'm glad for it because he'll be out of the country for a month teaching a class in Monterrey and he's great company. So he gets a beer (Dos Equis draft) and I get a black & white (condensed milk and two shots) and we talk about trading beverages since he needs to stay up with class preparations and I'm the one who needs to sleep.

We are planning to meet each other at the border when I go down to McAllen next month for mujerfest. I'm going to be reading my work. It's been awhile but I'm trying for more theatrics this time. I'm tired of my own confinement.

There's a lot of change happening - I am at a cusp once again. This last year back in San Antonio have made me look older and I find myself more easily upset or rather, less tolerant of those who are not emotionally available or grateful.

It would be nice to find freedom in this city. It would be nice to be with who I wanted, when I wanted. It would be nice to create the work I need to complete.

I'm going to bed. Wish me luck.

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

woo hoo!


I got that job I applied for a couple of weeks ago at the downtown campus. I am delirious with happiness - more pay, closer to home, closer to the arts/downtown scene, well-established program and easy going folks...

As my friend Rafael used to say: Thanks God! [insert sexy Dominican accent here].

La Lupe... a su manera

Every once in a while I come back to this blog with a reminder of La Lupe, that incredible singer who doesn't compare. She's part of the reason I started writing this blog - to remind myself of the powerful women around me, to remember that, like her, I can take in all the world around me and then throw it back out - as an artist, as a woman, as a crazy healer.

Who can forget her song "Que te pedi", a song every incredible breakup should have in its soundtrack:

hoy pides tu las estrellas y el sol
no soy un dios
asi como soy
yo te ofresco mi amor, no tengo mas
[you ask for the stars and the sun - i'm not a god - but as I am I offer my love - I don't have more]

pero que te pedi,
tu lo puedes al mundo decir,
que supieras que no hay en la vida otro amor
como mi amor.
[but what did I ask of you - you can tell the world that there is no love like my love]

Or her "La Tirana", which deconstructed men's views of women:
Segun tu punto de vista
yo soy la mala
vampiresa en tu novela
la gran tirana
[according to your point of view, I'm the wicked/bad one - the vampire in your novel, the great tyrant]
That song has defined my work in destroying expectations of femininity or, better yet, removing masculinist silencing.
PBS' Independent Lens series featured La Lupe recently in a documentary. I missed the only showing because I was in class. And when it was due to air again, my local PBS decided to do a fundraiser instead. I shouted to the tv "I'll give 10 bucks if you put La Lupe on right now!" but they didn't listen to me.

Everyone should check out the website about the show, though. I'm not kidding. La Lupe expresses the pent up rage and passion that so many women carry (or wish they carried) but have trouble releasing. I love La Lupe and, wherever she is right now, she knows it. Bella!

Friday, June 08, 2007

bright idea

The city decided to install a light on one of the telephone polls behind my ghetto townhome so now I feel like I'm living in some horribly written (and quite boring) noir novel. I like my bedroom to be light. I'm not one of those who needs it so dark I couldn't see if someone was right in front of me. I think I like it with more light because my eyesight is so bad.

Anyhow, now even with the shades drawn, I get these lines of light in the most unique oily-orange yellow shade I've ever seen. I don't know if it's the light's intensity that's disturbing me or that I like the color so much. It makes streaks across the hardwood floors. This with the insomnia (going on 2 months of hard core now) and the cats outside having sex (yes, really), and I could write a B-rated movie in no time. I just need a suspicious character and a cheating spouse (there's a bad joke in there).

I got to touch minerals yesterday in my geology class, which is going much better. The sleepiness hits me at 8:15 and I'm dying through the last 45 minutes. The professor, pretty cool and nerdy, reminds me of someone so I look at him too intently - it's the goatee and bald head. I forget my look can be pretty powerful when I'm actually thinking something.

My mind's not on school yet though - so, while I'm learning I still do the giggles when he talks about the cleavage of a mineral, whether a mineral has "distinct cleavage" or "underdeveloped cleavage". And then there are all the descriptive words for the minerals - greasy, soapy, silky, earthy, resinous. I start drifting - wonder how to describe my own cleavage or someone else's. Reminds me this poetry journal I picked up that ended up with almost a dozen poems with pelvic references (i.e. bowl, bell, box, chalice, door, etc).

We talk about streak - when a mineral is rubbed across unglazed porcelain - how some will leave a line of powder which defines them. Shoot, I know a couple of people who've left their powdery mark on me. God bless them!

So, as you can tell, I'm not concentrating. I'm getting off not just on the suggestive language (all disciplines should start this way as a means to facilitate learning) but to the language itself. No, not writing much... when?

I have the art piece to complete for the Esperanza's Que Queer exhibit that I have to turn in tomorrow and Delhi's birthday hijinks tomorrow. My god, a van full of 6 girls. The giggle vibrations alone could cure carpal tunnel as a form of alternative medicine.

Why do I always get so hot in the summer? It must be my Caribbeanness and all this sun. I must be giving something off too because yesterday some 20 year old asked me to join him for lunch. I was telling Vandi, my gay man husband, and he told me he was jealous of the potential. It's about time. I've been jealous of him for years - able to go to a bath house that doesn't have signs on it that say "Tea Time at 12 and 3 p.m." or "No sex allowed". Mama's hot I guess...

Wednesday, June 06, 2007


I've made some changes recently. I know I do plenty of griping on these pages. It is an online diary so I have that privilege. BUT, it starts wearing a woman down to just realize how the legislature is fucked up, how local government doesn't listen, how radio stations need to improve as the traffic worsens (I like my ride to be comfortable and interesting and I like to do drag performances to Alicia Keys' music), etc...

All that said, I'm trying for quiet activism. No, I'm not here to support a presidential candidate and I don't have the time for political marches down Congress Ave. to the state capital. I don't have time to pass out safe sex literature and free condoms and gloves through the bars until 2 a.m. I don't even have much time for free graphic design work for area nonprofits like I used to do.

But, I wrote letters to my leg representatives while they were in session. And, despite my earlier discussion about the local blindness of national groups like Family Pride, I submitted a story as a queer family for their "family of the month" media effort. I loved (despite myself) that they included single parents in their questions, that one-parent led families were, in fact, families. On top of that, I served as a interviewee for Rosie Molinary's recent book release, Hijas Americanas: Beauty, Body Image, and Growing Up Latina. More cool that she's set up an interactive blog where you can win books, dialogue with the author, and scope out featured Mi'jas (daughters). Well, I thought, why not enter my info? And, I was chosen!

Click on the pic to see me, featured. Cool, eh?

Strange that I wrote lesbian within it. I guess in thinking of identity that's a more palatable one... but I haven't used that as a marker in a long, long time. Still, I feel fortunate. It's amazing how questions can provoke your thoughts, make you question and reaffirm.

Okay, I'm off. Got writing, got to put the kid down, etc.

fajando con la poesia // fighting with poetry

I've started reading Edna St. Vincent Millay, a poet whose work I'd actually dismissed on more than one occasion. She's best known for her short, alerting pieces like "First Fig":

My candle burns at both ends;
It will not last the night;
But ah, my foes, and oh, my friends--
It gives a lovely light!

which every high schooler read and said YES! about. I've often critiqued my own work negatively, thinking I spend too much time relating to the home, creating home, etc., while still trying for feminist defining. I have read Millay's work and now find some comfort in knowing she was able to do similar things and to do so successfully. Yes, I'm still on my quest to devote more time to my writing.

I get caught up in doing other things though and if it's at all creative, I lose my ganas for writing. I think that's why I like to be a little pent up too. Have a little denial in my life or someone who tells me no.

But still have freedom. Think polyamorous relationships or open marriages. There might be other options but no amount of meditation will remove that fire from me. I was having a simple coffee yesterday evening with a friend of mine. This was after my first day of class (yawn!) so I was now fully awake - and we talked about how another friend views him as shy, nice, even religious. I laughed because it only takes us minutes each time to start talking about how there's too much fire in the room or how it's sometimes good to stay good friends with an ex (yes, in the biblical sense). More fun is that we have most of our conversations in Spanish and some words differ in meaning between Cuban Spanish and Mexican Spanish.

When we did start talking about our exes, I mentioned always seemed to be in a fight (Siempre estabamos fajando) and he laughed. I realized that fajando meant something totally different for him... something along the lines of what you do after you fight. Either way, ours were physical exchanges...

I got off topic... within one blog entry! My god, my mind is everywhere instead of right here. Alright, so one thing I am aware of and actively trying to develop is less fear in my writing. I want to go all the way. And I mean less fear elsewhere too. Mami 'ta lista!.
seek release/From dusty bondage into luminous air
--Edna St. Vincent Millay

Monday, June 04, 2007

deflated queer pride

It's Gay Pride Month all over the world.

Locally, all the events can be found listed on the really great online gay news source, Q San Antonio.

Trouble is, I'm just not feeling so gay lately. Too much on my mind? Distracted? (I've used that word A LOT lately). Puede ser.

Side news: I start school on Tuesday. I have told everyone that if I don't pass this class I'm not bothering getting my BA - this is the last class I need. Shit! I have no nails left to chew. If you have some I could nibble on, please come over.

Music news: I now remember why Gladys Knight was and always will be one of my favorites. The woman's wonderful when I'm writing. As a side to this self-reminder, I cleaned up my desk to make it "writer-friendly". Now just to get rid of the new pile of paperwork that somehow ended up on the dining table... I'm going to bed!

new poem : the world should end

with dough rising in warm bowls, towels holding in the yeasty exhalations of floured mounds

with the oven warming, hands stretching the dough – braiding it as the dough takes it space, rests on baking sheets

in small, walk-through kitchens, the oven waking up the heat in our homes

smelling of salt and water and wheat, warming the air

with butter, pulled from a cool fridge, moistness collecting at the top, the plate cool to the touch, butter knives showing how soft we’ve gotten

at a table full of those we adore, who are here or have already left – the whole house foggy with the steam of fresh bread pulled open by smooth hands

with an offering to the things that made us, the things we have made, the things we were given that brought us here

Saturday, June 02, 2007

new poem :: corrections


Go where your body and soul want to go.
– Joseph Campbell

In my head last night,
some reclaiming of the history between us

how we walk through our days still asleep,
our bed clothes on, hair in disarray

Sometimes the arms crossed mean cold weather,
at others, the cold look I’ve carried since not hearing from you

Instead, you should be near me –
eyes closed awaiting my kiss

how my face rests against your chest
this daydream of hair
another form of sleepwalking –
making the impossible a thing that can be

sleepwalking teaches:
if I talk to a plant, she quivers in knowing
if I am hurt and someone thinks of me, I feel that love
if, an hour after our last kiss, you are discovered in the distance,
our secret is found out

and the whole of this ground moves into a slight breath
now preciously releasing that moment when one of us turned to the other, realizing

Friday, June 01, 2007

d - r - a - g - o - n days

I've have the song "dragon days" by alicia keys ruminating the last day or two. Probably because I made fast potential friends with this guy and now haven't talked to him. I tend to get people fired up and may have done this here too. Maybe that's why I stay away from some people sometimes. The soul woken up, brightened, is quickly noticeable to others and, as I learned from a curandera years ago, those things call out others. That calling out isn't always positive but can be expressed through jealousy, anger, corruption, mistrust.

I think I have to much fire in me, in my personality. If I was writing more I might process the flame out of me more easily. Instead, I have the lyrics in my head and they won't leave:

Like a desert needs water
I need you alot
So baby
Dragon days, I need to be saved
I'm missin you
In the day you drag on and on
Don't you wanna play?
D-R-A-G-O-N days
Got me D-R-A-G-G-O-N

Got to put my mind on other things.

I am happy to be leaving on time today. My boss didn't show today so the office was all mine. Cliffy's coming by today for dinner. Delhi has her guitar lesson. Tomorrow I'm going back to the Botero exhibit with Terri. My parent's are doing a cuban-style cookout (black beans and barbeque). It's Friday. I have a dry patch of skin on my left upper arm. I got new shoes. Okay.