what if…

What if I when was raised, God was a woman?

What if I was raised with men washing my clothes, cooking my meals, dusting my home?

What if the boys were asked to set the table, while I played outside?

What if I was raised to think about myself first, then those around me.

What if I was insulted, or groped, or pressured to have sex, and I pushed back,

I demanded my rights, I pushed you away and shoved you

And people actually cared

they were shocked at how someone treated me

What if I was able to hear my inner voice?
            Shhh, quiet, what am I saying? I’m trying to listen

I can demand what I want .  (what do I want?)

I can tell you how to please me, and correct you when it’s not right.  (can you do that? No, you have to do that, down there. now)

I can go where I want to go,  (where do I want to go? not you, me)

I don’t approach men and consider if they want me  (do they want me, do you, do I?)

I don’t look to them for approval. (I don’t ache for it. I wasn’t raised that way)

I don’t want to please people, — I want to know who I am for myself

I don’t need the world’s approval— I want my own approval!

I don’t need you to like me, —  I need to like me!

I don’t need to be told I am a good girl

I don’t need to be told I am anything, I am.


I can say no

I can say no because I know what I want

because I know what I don’t want

because I mean it and I can say it

I am disobedient

I am angry

I am alone and happy

I am horny

I am smart

I am busy

I am finding myself

Exploring myself

Exploring the world

And I have the right

I have the right to decide, my body my clothes, my shoes, my colors, my food, my home, my dreams, my hair, my lover, my being, my life

My self


Souls wander, expand, grow and stretch

They shrink, go inward and hide in fear

Mind, soul, heart? This self reflection, self obsessions cannot be good for oneself in the end. Too much attention on how I feel, boredom, restlessness, internally focused instead of just doing the work I have set out to do.

So much lies waiting for me, as I sit and think. So much to say and do, yet I process, doze and avoid.

Being alone can be so good, if we just avoid ourselves a bit.


Sunrises through frosted glass

softening the sun’s glare,

glancing directly upon


without burning eyes or hearts.

my lovers-

hair tussled, smiling back-

their open nakedness shared,

skin pressing, fingertips brushing.

She held me by firelight,

softly stroking my hair,

he poured words out,

the world tucked away till tomorrow.

and sunrises through frosted glass

allowing glimpses of love and possibilities.

across from me

there you are

as I have seen you so many times

scruffy, tender, thoughtful, focused,

glancing in my direction when I catch your eye

it still thrills me,

to see your face respond

when our eyes meet

I love being in love.

I love being in love with you

and you with me.


and then there were 3

you sat down

your necklace caught my eye

your mind caught my mind

your body caught my body

and I desired you, all of you.

You saw the path, you had walked it before

he must have known intuitively this is what I wanted but could never say

how can one desire something they never knew existed?

Yet suddenly you are here, and he is as well

and we share, our minds over dinner, our hearts over wine

our passion together, exploring, touching, discovering

how is it that no one told me of lovingkindness

manifested consciously, gently, and honestly feels so vulnerable.

yet with lovers who are brave, kind, honest and authentic

is a gateway to timelessness, bliss, and love

the future waits to see where we will walk

for now, this is as wonderful as I imagined life could be

Death sex

there are moments we make decisions, unsure why,

perhaps following patterns of behavior, comforting ourselves with the familiar.

it was like that, on the porch, in his apartment, after it ended.

sex as a death rattle, deep in the chest,

the last breath of an already dead relationship.

there is a longing there, but not for that.

for explanations never given, apologies stuck in the throat

even now, envelopes remind me of all you were unable to provide.

silence familiar to me, from men who never learned how to live

from fathers who ran and never answered their little daughters’ questions

from you, unable to face yourself, and give those you tried to pull apart along the way

the truth you need, and they deserve.

silence as deafening as the last breath.



night walks

I watch her walking the floor, his head on her shoulder, then popping up, grinning at still being awake, still seeing the world around, then nestling down against all he has ever know as home.

Not so long ago it was I walking the night and she was nestled on my shoulder.  You are right, I am having a conversation with my past self.

She’s not sure where she is going, she loves her babies, but baby care can be so boring.  Does that mean she is a bad mother? Does that mean I will fail and mess them up somehow? How I longed for a fortune teller to tell me what to do- anything just to keep them safe and happy.

But I suppose that is the way it is.  Women fall into motherhood, babies fall into our arms, and we walk the floors at night trying to get to our new love to sleep so we can figure out what our lives are all about,


Why do we long for one single other in our lives. What occurs when we give to just one, all that we are? Do our lives become more real? Why do I feel more alive? Why is life and the choices I make, the moments I experience, become more alive once shared, organized, reflected on, with another?

This sharing, my thoughts, my dreams, my hopes and losses, my day, my failures, my desire, my mornings, my nights, my body, my moments, my plans, my curiosity, my explorations, my passions, my everyday, I offer. 

 But I want it all in return. I want the same from you. You have moments without me, as I do you, but to share each with the other is all I ask. That is what I long for in life.  Where are you?

Of course this teenage like pining makes more sense, or perhaps confusion when one considers the non-monogamous life I have found myself living.  Perhaps its an issue of “life is always greener” or perhaps I am just tired and lonely lately.

Mont Blanc

I glanced her between the pines this morning, parting the down of her cloudy pillows, her head lifting above the stuff, tempting me to climb. 

Or is she a he? I take the French approach, “all things horrible and bad are feminine”. But today, you are glorious, powerful, magnificent, protecting the city below. That just goes to show you, even mountains can be trans I suppose. 


Clearly part of what we desire in life is to be happy.  Perhaps it is all we really desire.  From wanting others approval, to wanting a lover, to marriage, children, career- the Western approached to happiness is a clear path you just need to follow, make the right decisions about who to do all this with, and you too will be happy.

Two marriages later, I am not sure about the path.  I still believe it can bring happiness.  But like every choice in life, everyone we make is also a choice not to do something else, not to take a different path.

For a long time I have been a believer in positive thought and self-manifestation.  I see myself as a generally positive person, I see myself as happy, therefore I am.  I have controlled this by stating it is what is and by manifesting this belief.  But, to be totally honest, there are days I am not satisfied with myself.  There are moments I know I have chosen poorly and had to deal with the consequences, which honestly were not that pleasant and could have been avoided if I had been honest enough with myself about reality instead of stubbornly clinging to myself declared happiness.

I think about this with school as well.  I believe I am intelligent- even when my grades did not always show that.  I also think I like to write, but that doesn’t mean I am a good technical writer for public health.  If I am not honest with myself about my shortcomings- my poor choice in mates in the past, my lack of technical writing skills, etc, I will choose to believe I am happy (and will probably be ignorantly happy at the moment) but I also chose to not try to improve the things I need to be working on.  And these things take time, focus, attention, and a sense of dissatisfaction with the current state of affairs to feel motivated to change.

So, part of Jen 2.0 will be, to be honest with herself- if I am not happy, I will not be afraid to identify that, and speak its truth, so that I can choose to do something about it.  I wonder at times if this sense of being a fake in doctoral school is related to this.  We are all asked to do things we have never done before and to do them like we are an expert.  We know we are not, yet we need to pretend we are to become that person.  (Like pretending we are happy when we know deep inside we are not).  This sense of lack of authenticity, of knowing what is within does not match the air we are presenting without, creates a sense of feeling like we are faking it.  Perhaps it is necessary, but with a healthy dose honestly and humility within ourselves.