Day of Venus (XIV)

This is the 14th Friday of my Day of Venus Posts, where I let wash up what is present in the undercurrents of my mind, heart and spirit. I am honored and deeply grateful for your readership as I cultivate my writer voice blindfoldedvertebrae by vertebrae, all chrysalis and soil.



In my hips is the storage of what is to come, what has been soaking, what is. Now is the only thing that is real and I carefully select the visions I allow to repeat themselves in my mind. I know my body is also a brain. I know my body is both a highly intelligent master and an obedient servant. My voice exposes the waves that I’ve allowed to break, the prayers I’ve whispered, the justice I crave, the love that I’ve given, and all of the moments spent alone and unseen and burning.


I walk onto a stage where the lights in my face keep me from seeing anyone’s faces. I adjust the microphone and learn to be slow and steady and inside of me more than outside of me. I do it again and again and again until I die. –A decision my whole body agrees to.

This week I sang at an open mic and learned about myself. The songs of others moved me to tears. The room itself almost made me cry–disco ball in the center and sunlight after it had been gray and cold all day sitting itself on the linen covered cushions all over the ground around the stage, shiny and life-giving people placing their beautiful instruments along the pretty wood of the walls, the window beside the stage showing the tops of trees and a sky changing from yellow to purple to black as the night played on. Hearing my voice sound out through the room, singing lines I conjured in moments of being in-between worlds, put a new color into my palette of existence. I felt naked, seen, exposed, both elegant and awkward, angelic and childlike.

Things that are soul spotlights: money, power, influence, microphones, speakers. They reveal what is collecting in corners, what is underneath, what has been beneath a tarp, the photographs and letters you keep in your shoebox. And I love the exposure. I reach into my throat and all that is nested learns how to fly.

I am singing at vineyards, among dahlias and tulips. I sing on benches under the sun and on top of mountains for the greens and ambers. I sing to children and they sing with me, back to me, for me. “Ms. A, I made a song–do you want to hear it?” and I listen close and close my eyes to listen like it is the most precious thing I have ever heard and I say “Please keep singing ok? Never ever stop singing.” “Ms. Alix I sang the song to my grandma?” “Ms. Alix I brought my piano book to school–look!” And I give and I give and I give, and I receive and I receive and I receive. I am singing in rose gardens and you stop mid-sentence to allow yourself to feel. I sing for lovers, and fighters and for people searching for a resting place to retreat to. I sing with harps and violins and drums that will you to dance. I close my eyes and am just as taken aback as you are by what flows through me. I am not even it itself, but the vessel the “it” dives into and out of. I choose to be more instrument than human. I know that a prolonged state of connection and mystery, of deep peace, and a joy so giving it hurts, is not a myth or impossibility. It is something in me so real and true and inviting. I give in more and more each day. It is for me. It is for me. It is for me because it is in me and always has been. So natural and so easy to surrender to. I create a place for this by both surrendering and redirecting my body, by accepting the call and staying on the line, by showing up as `I am and speaking, singing, moving from the inside out. I allow my love to bewilder if it must. I allow my love to be felt. I allow my love. I have nothing to fear, nothing to hide, nothing to be nervous about. Nothing Is Lost. All of the time spent wondering if this could be true… “Could this really be for me?” Every time I’ve attracted and stumbled into the dwellings of musicians and poets and painters and those with affection gleaming from their eyes–not by chance or mere coincidence, but by the sound living in me leading me to harmonization, equilibrium. All stiffness in me dissolves into a pool of water. My antennas receive and I transmit what creates a stillness, a revitalization, a state of bliss.



This week I felt many times both a drowning and a winning in the fight to keep my light alive and burning. I am still unable to pin down the cause, but I do have leads. My nose and my mouth were barely above the surface, yet above the surface–my hand above the water clenching the love letters of my light for the sun to hold for me while I figured out how to float. I felt like a slimy hatched chick, all awkward and gooey eyed, slumped and heavy and knowing nothing except that the sunlight feels good. I suppose this a great starting place–from nothing, from limited senses, from only the ability to know I am a thing that exists. I kept throwing up what I once thought of as me, and every time I saw it on the floor outside of me a tantrum took place, an exasperated voice said “What then? What now? What do I have that is worth anything?” and passing winged shadows beneath the sun’s light said “this, this, this right here and just this.”



There is an oldness in me that I have felt my whole life–old enough to know the pointlessness of competition, the meaninglessness of cuffed jeans and white shoes in photographs. Bored by teams, my attention never held in conversations with invisible score-boards. A keen knowing and understanding of when something is said from a place of rivalry vs. from a place of building connection. The noise of what our man-made systems have deemed as note-worthy, popular, standard and “the best” becomes a background static hum I check out of, and I nod my head and say “mmhm” and try to find a clever escape without becoming a rival. I have often pretended to not know, or have chosen to give praise and accolades in order to dodge a part in someone’s play. Action-packed movies have always put me to sleep, and then a film about the life of a single petal has me on the edge of my seat enraptured. It is an oldness that takes refuge in what is not asking to be seen. An oldness that easily deletes all traces of who I claim to be in the world, satisfied with only being where I am at. You met the queen and made 10 grand and I got the same surge of satisfaction from the conversation I had at the busstop with a 19-year old who bought her best friend a gift at the mall. ~

I write a lot about busstops and I guess that is because of how much I learned about myself and the world, and who `I am in the world, during the formative years of my life as a writer, taking poetry classes, attending slams on Queen street and in nooks and crannies of Chinatown, and immersing myself in literature without knowing how on earth anything I was doing with my scholarship, my time and my place in college was going to make me money in the world. I just kind of always followed breadcrumbs that felt good or were interesting to me at the time. This was before social media had such a strong presence in our lives. I had a facebook account I’d get caught up in scrolling, writing, expressing myself, but also kept careful watch of my data usage, using it mainly for the bus app or for academic emails and assignments, then sometimes the games like Words-With-Friends, Tetris and then a My Cafe game where you had to bus tables and take orders as fast as you can (why I played this stressful game while also working at such places I have no idea). At busstops and on busses I befriended all walks of life–the houseless, children, elders, criminals, the lonely, the popular, the forgotten, the tourists, healers (I met my dear friend Sylvia who later became my Reiki Master at a busstop in Honolulu), mothers, and people who never learned and never cared to learn English and so spoke to me in poetry and spoke to me via humor and loving mannerisms and gestures. So naturally my subconscious pulls from and I even have dreams of various bus stations where I spent a lot of time. I especially learned that I was an elder in a young girl’s body during those years. Observant and soft-spoken and journal-scribbling and attentive. I pretended to care about things peers my age and then society in general cared about, but at heart I never invested time or was curious enough to watch the shows, pay attention to the celebrities, understand what is socially acceptable and not socially acceptable.

I also have always had great surges of flight, a rush of emotion I couldn’t make sense of or name, and this happens all the time still to today, but `I get better and better at knowing what to do in those times. I remember once when it happened I was in the parking lot of the Polynesian Culture Center, about 16, and it was after all of the tourist busses left the lot one by one, back to the hotels, to Waikiki, to the resorts on the westside. It was about 11-midnight. I will always remember this particular surge because of how overwhelming and unexplainable it was, and how the people around me looked at me like I was crazy, another person, like I had flew off the handle and was possessed. And the truth is, I felt possessed, and during these moments that come I do feel a certain beast in me. I often wonder if I could go back in time with the understandings and awareness I have now, if I could pinpoint what triggered or caused it. What had been sitting and building up? What provoked the desire to run? I was with 3-4 people, one of them being my first relationship of my life, whom I had lived with in high school and crushed on beginning in the 5th grade. We were scheming to venture somewhere, do something, hangout somewhere–probably deciding on who to call for a ride or where we would be at for the night–whose house, whose yard, whose town to roam in. All of a sudden I felt like running, and I was angry and wanted to fight. I didn’t want to fight anyone around me–I just wanted to use my body in a way that now `I would translate as needing to push and pull heavy weight, or literally go for a run, or put music on loud and shake and dance my body through the air until the beast in me is satiated. So I remember saying things that caught everyone completely off guard, and I cannot remember what I said. I remember they were not words that hurt their feelings or served as demolitions to anyone’s spirit, just words and sentences I felt gushing out of me–maybe about my surroundings, myself, my “self”, our “selves”, the sky, the waves? I wish I could replay and witness and hear. And so I darted off running across the empty parking lot, passed my house just across the McDonalds I worked at which was across the street next to PCC, through the yard with pokey sharp blades of Japanese grass that grew in round tufts and bundles, onto the sand, blue Portuguese man o’ wars under the moonlight with tails I dodged over and around. I sat in a concave part of the tree roots of a yard where an artist lived, my body breathing rapidly and heavily after the maddening sprint. I never saw the artist or met the person who lived in that house, but my mom had. In their window facing the ocean were two manikins clothed and drinking tea. Their outfits often changed. In the yard there were statues, shapes of bright colors hanging from tree branches, gnomes and trolls and figurines that were moved, replaced or gone from time to time. And I instinctually knew that this spot was my hiding place. Everywhere we lived `I had a hiding place to run to, and it was during the years of my poetry classes and English major happenings that I realized this. I can sit and recall every hiding place I ever ran to. We moved about 5-8 times between the ages of, (well, probably birth, but when it comes to Hawai’i recollections), 4-17. I have lived in Waialua, Haleiwa, Mokuleia beach in a tent, Sunset (across the street from V-land, where they eventually built a bunch of celebrity’s houses and a big gate/fence everyone has to walk around now to get to the beach), then on the “Big Island” or the island of Hawai’i where my mom was a caretaker of a property in exchange for housing, then Hau’ula, Ka’a’awa, Punalu’u, Laie. And for every single place we lived I can recall the colors of the rocks and creatures that inhabited my hiding places. I sat and pet snails, touched water with my feet, leaned my back against roots, imagined I was a menehune and used the leaves as blankets. I spoke to God and acted out scenarios in my mind. I held bugs between my fingers and looked at their faces close-up until I scared myself and threw the bugs into the air away from me.

Portuguese Man o’ War (Pic Credit: TreeHugger.com)

Anyway, nobody ever mentioned that night and nobody ever mentioned any time I ever darted off and away. It’s just always been something I’ve done. I don’t even remember walking home that night or the events that followed, but because of the intensity of the surge in me, and the look on the faces staring back at me before I took off, it has always been a particular moment I reflect on with curiosity.

I feel like for me, solitude and reclusivity breeds authenticity and helps me go back into myself when I get too caught up in another person’s, or other people’s version of the world. I take comfort in periods of no contact with the outside world because it helps me be a better listener, translator and friend to myself. It also helps me get more clear on what I am wanting, and the clearer I am about what I want, the more rapidly it can come to me.


My only real desire, my ultimate goal, is to cultivate more joy. Through joy comes creation. Joy is the highest intelligence of the universe, and it lives with or without the knowledge of or a need to understand it’s mechanisms. There is no language that could ever bottle it up enough for consumption.

Joy is not the lack of or dismissal of sadness–joy is what allows great sadness to be filtered, to be moved. Being guided by joy is not to be a stranger to the dark–but to be able to fly through it, like a bird at dusk and dawn, close enough to the dark to know better than to be consumed, and so welcoming of the light that it becomes your daughter.



I am in the middle of training myself, once again, to cultivate and allow joy to become my being. Dr. Dispenza says “your personality creates your personal reality” and it is a reminder to me. I am training myself to wake up and dwell on the beautiful visions in my heart. I am training myself to take my life into my hands be responsible for myself. I am training my “self” to participate in what brings melody to my life and allows it to come out of me.

I speak life into. I surround myself with others who speak life into. I give energy to what I want to see grow.


With every passing moment I become more loose. My hips remember an expanding, like it is in the blood I am made of and the blood that came before. It is older than grandfather time. It is a memory in my body that my mind doesn’t know as well. I interrupt and redirect the lineage into song, dance, spell, invocation. There are stories to be told now. And my grandmothers know and they cry tears of liberation. “Rest. Play. Sing. Dance.” To see that I am free now is to be free now.

The Day of Venus (VIII)

I am seeing that sitting down to write is the same experience I had when I first started running and exercising on a regular basis. I see that it feels good 100% of the time, and it doesn’t matter how far I go or how fast, what comes out or doesn’t–it just matters that it feels good, the thoughts dancing where they dance, the words laying where they lay.

I’ve got a “fisherman” character living in me that Abby and I have noticed over the course of us being alongside one another. He props himself up onto the kitchen counter in one swift jump, legs wide and chomp-slurping an apple. He sips on bourbon all night long between gulps of water. He isn’t the best at small talk but he’ll ask anyone about the dreams they’ve been having lately. He gets way too loud when he’s excited, and he gives a damn good massage.

Where it’s coming from > .

An ode to all the beautiful people I’ve met while working at the grocery store I’ve been at since last July: Alexandra grew up surrounded by nature–living in a forest until the age of 10, then moving to live beside a lake in the woods after that. She said a friend sometimes drives her to the McMenamin’s in Vancouver and she feels more at home–enveloped by green and looking up to see it towering above you. She wore a rose-gold shawl, and had a gray cashmere beanie that made her eyes look blue. But she said “well actually…” when I complimented them, and told me her eyes are green like mine, sometimes brown, sometimes lime.

Fox has a Pomeranian named Sierra and she is a heart-centered rambler (Fox is the rambler–not the Pomeranian, but maybe the Pomeranian too). A keen sense of kinship is felt between the way I can tell she doesn’t take the shitty parts of life too seriously–she’s got that Aquarius “it’s a spiritual quest to be even be alive right now dude” output.

The Leo Moons of the store included me, the main manager, and a girl with long silk hair with blues and purples, and the coolest pants I’ve ever seen. Loving on others is like breathing, like our hearts wants to hum with every heart it encounters –love on and play, lift, speak life, ignite the warmth of the sun from the inside-out. When we’re down, it is felt, and we rarely explain why. A new day can solve anything anyway. If not this day or the next, then it it’ll be the day after that.

Ruta comes to the store every Saturday, her bags neatly folded in her cart, and her reading glasses around her neck. She told me there is a creek next to her house, and a garden. She works with one of the supplement companies, and she met Dr. Bronnor. She said he is very down-to-earth and sincere-“a wonderful gentleman”. Abby and I were at a park once naming all of the dogs around us, and I named a tall distinguished blonde doodle “Dr. Bronnor” and Abby laughed that crinkle-nose laugh she does where her eyes close and her cheeks flood into pink.

There is a little girl who has a song to sing almost every time she comes into the store. The first time I ever met her I was standing by the register aisles and she ran up to me from beside her mom in produce and gave me a huge hug, then I complimented her dress and she began twirling and singing a song from a movie. She ran up to hug the Leo Moon Manager one day too, catching her off guard and I thought I saw Leo Moon’s eyes tear up, but maybe that was just the lighting and my imagination.

In the every day moments is where we build our lives–not through the displays, the sealed and delivered declarations, or the roles written in stone. Moments like the ones we have on the way to the next one. Where does your mind rest when it is resting?

My Dream: One day I want to have a rabbit and sometimes after I harvest my garden’s vegetables I’ll leave a bunch of them still there and let my rabbit hop around the garden finding them. And may there be a greenhouse in my future too, Amen.

(A continuation on the musings from A Day of Venus VI): I think I learned to speak from the space between my ribs and down to the base of my spine–that gourd always present for us to reach from–partly because of learning how to oli, to chant, to sing. It was in Halau Ka’ulaokalani, the name of our hula group or “troupe”, led by kumu hula, or hula teacher, Wayne Takemoto. From the age of 6 to around 13 I learned through song and dance the stories of Kings and Queens, gods and goddesses, and the celebration of plants, valleys, soil, stars–after that time and through high school we were just called occasionally to go dance at someone’s wedding, or 1st baby party, or community event. I notice when I am in front of people, behind a mic, a camera, or looking someone in the eye, when I am present and calm I speak from this place, sing from this place, give from this place.

As made up as this may sound, it is truth: I remembered the hum and melody of a song around the age of 5-6 that was the melody of a song playing while `I was born, and one my mother played a lot when I was in her stomach. It is the “Song of The Goddesses”, and I still have not found the exact song as it played in my head. (I will have to just sing it myself then eh?) But I will find one of it’s many copies from YouTube and post it here. It’s lyrics are the names of goddesses in repetition: “Isis, Astarte Diana, Hecate, Demeter, Kali, Inanna”, but at the time I only heard the melody and not the words. When I asked my mother “mom, mom what song is this?” and hummed it for her, she asked me to do it again about 3 more times before smiling and then saying “ahhhh” before singing it out for me. I asked her several more times to sing it again, over the course of many years after that.

I ran away from the house and found hiding places when I was overwhelmed or scared. When we lived in Hau’ula it was on a sturdy branch of a tree that swung low over the shallow tide of the ocean when the moon was full, then was easy to just climb onto from the sand when the tide was low. I sang into the wind sometimes sitting on that tree, my voice getting carried so forcefully I couldn’t even hear myself. I remember looking into the water one day when it was particularly stormy–rain making little dents on the surface of the crinkled waves–when I saw a puffer fish beneath me and tried to touch it with my big toe.

Another place I ran to was all the way up Green Valley Road until I reached the fork in the road, and I went left just before the little pig farm to sit on the rocks beside one of the streams. I could step down from the road onto the dirt and rocks leading toward the water and crouch just under the rock wall where I couldn’t be seen. I would sit there until I forgot why I ran there, watching the river carry leaves, bugs, tiny fish and powder-like clay dirt. I made up songs, sang ones I knew, made shapes in the dirt with my fingers.

(to be continued from A Day of Venus VI)

Educating with Mindfulness in Hawai’i

I no longer say “Micronesian” when referring to any group in anyway; I list Chuukese, Marshallese, Kosraean, Yapese, Pohnpeian, Palauan, Woleaian, and there are probably more I’m missing. These are different languages, customs, traditions, and even dialects within the languages that sometimes don’t understand one another. As educators in Hawai’i we need to be more mindful and aware of the way we talk to, refer to, and handle decisions which affect students from these islands. We have to be careful we are not putting them al into the same “box”. We have to be careful about how we are making them feel about themselves. These kids are hurting for various reasons, from being separated from family members, being homesick and feeling suddenly deprived of all familiarity, then being mistaken for an identity they don’t understand. Some say they’d rather be referred to and thought of as “Polynesian” than openly share they are anything “Micronesian”. We have to take the time to learn about their thoughts. There are students who were raised here and speak English perfectly fine, yet they’re assumed to speak no English and are not called upon in class, or even challenged to rise to the occasion. I have had students tell me that upon arriving to their schools, their counselors immediately placed them into ESL classes without talking to them to find out if that was even needed. Students have shared that counselors question whether they passed classes in previous schools, and gave lower levels of math and science based on assumptions. Most students just let these kinds of things slide, eager to get by and not bring any attention to themselves. We have to take time to connect and get to know people we are handling and working amongst, despite the deadlines and procedures that surround us. The connection is what we are here for. When some first arrive, they are the kind of pure spirit that smiles and dances upon impulse, without shame or hesitation. They often love fishing, dancing and singing, and if you tell them to sit and work on something, it won’t be long before they’re looking out the window into the beautiful trees and at the birds. When they learn how to study for something, or understand a math concept for the first time, you’d be surprised at how they take that new understanding and run with it, excelling farther than you imagined. The structure of school does not allow them to show you everything they’ve got. Let’s change the way we lift them up and help them in a world they’re unfamiliar, (yet sometimes very familiar) with. Let’s let them be themselves and let them be proud of where they’re from. Let’s say their names right and over-applaud every small and big thing they accomplish. Let’s let them teach us. Let’s be real with them. Let’s simply love them and allow their innate desire to learn, express and excel simply be, without testing them with empty standards within a system which have no sincere meaning.

The above text was written after a particularly challenging week, and with a heavy heart about the way my students viewed themselves, and how many are being treated in and out of school. The following are links to articles with more information and depth into the issues they are facing in Hawaii.

This first link is from an article written in 2014 on Marshallese activist and poet, Kathy Jetnil-Kijiner, expressing views of being from these many islands of Micronesia, and growing up in Hawaii. 

Kathy Jetnil-Kijiner

The second link is one I shared with my students, because I feel she is an excellent role model and example. It is her WordPress site, which includes her reciting her poem for environmental justice at the United Nations Climate Summit.

Kathy Jetnil-Kijiner at UN Climate Change Summit

The third link is an article written by Civil Beat on the history, and complexity of their situations for leaving their homes and coming to Hawaii. 

Civil Beat on Civil Rights of Micronesian Immigration in Hawaii

This fourth and final link is revealing just how open the public seems to be about their disapproval and racist remarks, to where at one point it was openly shared on the radio. I still hear comments and jokes made like this today, sometimes in the fun way we joke about ourselves here in Hawaii, but sometimes with intentions of being vicious, whether conscious or subconscious… It just needs to stop. 

Racism in HI