Monday, July 29, 2013


I recently came across this sketch I had made a while back while waiting for some repairs to be done on my car. I find that my need to create and fill time has lead to the production of some unexpected and beautiful pieces. 

Thursday, July 11, 2013

More Battle Scars For The Warrior Queen

On June 27th I managed to fall twelve feet off a ladder. I landed in relative safety only to have the ladder come crashing down on my face. I had to pull myself out from under the ladder and find my coworkers for assistance. They took me to the nearest emergency room where I received a tetanus shot, two rounds of X-rays, and eight stitches. Turns out I had a broken nose.

I still consider myself lucky. I had managed to break the bone, not the cartilage, so nothing needed to be reset. I just had to wait for the bone to heal. As I laid there getting stitched I realized that this was the first time in my life I had broken a bone. I also remembered that my grandfather had broken his nose when he was a young man, however, he had broken the cartilage. He nose was never the same after that but it did give him a slightly more rugged appearance that was very reminiscent of Clint Eastwood. That little thought brought me a lot of comfort as I stared up at the hospital ceiling. 

I also remembered my grandfather saying things like "Don't use up all your tears now. You've got to save some for later."

After the doctor was done giving me my stitches Mariko asked if I wanted her to take a photo. I said yes. 

Thursday , June 27 at the Dr. Phillips Hospital - Photo by Mariko.

I know most people would never dream of having their photo taken right after they get stitches, but being the kind of photographer that I am I thought it would be a great opportunity. I was glad she was there to take pictures. 

Even though I had never broken a bone before I still have many cuts and scrapes on my body. I never bought into the idea that the only way for me to be pretty is to have perfectly smooth skin. Being an artist has made given me the knowledge that it is more important to create. My hands will have many cuts and my legs will have many bruises. The scars are a reminder of what you have survived and overcome. I never wanted to hide my face because I was never ashamed of what happened. On the contrary - I am very proud of my body's ability to heal and what I have been able to do. 

Thursday, June 27th - Photo by Mariko. 

I decided to continue with the photographs until my stitches were removed. 

Friday, June 28th

Day one: I sat by the computer with my "breakfast" admiring how bad the bruise had gotten. I'm wondering if my red lipstick is going to clash with these raccoon eyes. 

Saturday, June 29th

My mother and sister came to visit over the weekend to make sure I was ok. I was a little surprised to see the bruising had reached both sides of my face. 

Saturday, June 29th

That very same night I performed in the show at DRIP. Most people expected me to take the day off. I certainly would have had a good reason, but I am much tougher than that. I love the defiance in my eyes and the satisfaction I achieved from doing my job. 

Sunday, June 30th

Going to the Lake Eola Farmers Market with my mother and sister. This was the first attempt I made at looking decent since I broke my nose. 

Monday, July 1st

The puffiness in my face was finally starting to subside, however, I still wanted a close up shot of all the extra color around my eye. 

Monday, July 1st

I took this photo after one of my shifts at Starbucks. Most customers would stare at my face but were too afraid to ask about it. I am sure most people assumed it was the result of domestic violence. I was never ashamed of my face or tried to cover it up in any way. Frankly, I preferred to make jokes about it. I often replied to customers stares with "I was in a cage fight." 

Tuesday, July 2nd

Wednesday, July 3rd

Thursday, July 4th

Red lips, white skin, and blue stitches... Happy 4th of July! 

Friday, July 5th

And finally - the stitches are out! I can scratch my nose in peace.

Monday, July 1, 2013


This is a persona poem written from the perspective of Odysseus's wife Penelope from Homer's famous epic The Odyssey.

My husband fought many monsters, but so did I. People honor his tales of adventure but no one cares about the mundane life of glorified housewife. And if you asked me twenty years ago what I wanted to be, I would have said just your average housewife.

But that was not my fate.

My husbands curse became my curse. I didn't have the luxury of committing a multitude of sins while visiting the forbidden corners of the ocean. I just got to paid a heavy price for his mistakes. Although I am a queen it hardly matters in a society that likes to tell me that I still have no value. My palace became my prison, overrun with suitors who wanted to marry me only for possessions, land and title.

I thought up tricks to stall the suitors as long as I could. They stayed anyway and invaded my home. I was undermined and betrayed by those closest to me. And I loved my husband so much that I wanted nothing but for him to return safely.

I saw my home crumble around me and I watched my son grow up without a father. Do know how many times I wanted to just pick up and leave? Take my son and never look back. Start fresh somewhere else and let my past just vanish. But I was a good wife and I fulfilled my duty by staying.

No one ever asked me what I wanted because they assumed that this was all I could ever want. A palace, servants, men chasing after me. Maybe I wanted to travel and see the world too. But the only corner of the world I ever saw was the ocean outside of my window. The same ocean I saw in the morning and at night.

I was so jealous of the birds I saw coming and going as they pleased. What a beautiful feeling it must be to simply spread your wings and be anywhere you want to be. No one knows how many nights I sat at that window praying to any god that would listen to take this burden from me. But even the gods thought that these walls and this view are all I could ever want.

And when my husband finally did return he disguised himself to test my loyalty. After twenty years I passed every test that was given to me. And as much as I love him I know he did not afford me the same kind of loyalty. I wonder if I ever crossed his mind while he laid with all the others. I wonder if he ever missed watching his son grow up.

Now he sits by the fire retelling stories of his adventures. I am reminded of the sad truth that those who make mistakes receive celebrations while those who fulfill duties must keep going strong.