We’re still here

I don’t know if there are other lives.

I don’t know if you and I exist in any other place and time – if the world is ours, or if we can only go so far in this together.

I don’t know if we exist outside of place and time. If the other you and other me are just ahead, and watching. Turning back – or catching up – or only ever passing, while our fleeting touch reminds.

(That it is still you and me. The better us. The only us.)

I don’t know if there are other lives.

But when I close my eyes, we’re still here. And this is just our waiting.

Beautiful Mess


A place in my body

“This violence, and the constant betrayal Lucy describes, I can feel it in the pit of my stomach.

This place inside me, it seems to hold memories that don’t belong to me. There is rage here, deep in my cells. And fear, too, for what it means to be a woman in this world.

Sometimes, when Lucy talks, there is a place in my body that knows.”

~ Maggie, The Memory of Stars

Still I Rise by Maya Angelou

This remains our mystery

See, I could fill rooms and mouths to understand just what it was you did to me.

I could pour ink through my fingers, spill memories across the page until they form the neatest of lines. I could attempt to distill what survived, sift through the words to find some greater truth about love.

And you.


I come up empty every time.

Desire? Love? (The chemistry? The alchemy?)

The way you altered me.

Above all, this remains our mystery.

inexplicable by Joanne Piechota

Image by Joanne Piechota

Of true submission

“Most people think the best way to live is to run from pain. But a much more joyful life embraces the entire spectrum of human feeling.” - Lee Holloway, Secretary

I gave you a copy of Secretary. Said you were my E Edward Grey. You watched and said I’m not sure how I feel about that, because you thought I meant your kinks, when what I really meant was how you feared them.

I recognised the concerted effort, the slight tremble that comes with pushing it down. The hardened surface, the closing off. And the way it would all suddenly crack apart when it became too much – this strange tenderness that grew in the dark between us.

You were my Mr. Grey. Battling hard against the force of my submission. Only a fool would think it wasn’t brave – this laying down, this baring all. The way you said it’s different with you, and I could finally get you to make that rare sound of ragged breath, and your return.

(Only, I wonder now you are gone. Just where did my surrender take you?)

I kept my hands flat on the table for as long as I could, you know. Like the fierce and determined Lee I was completely sure of my love. I thought it could play in the shadows, give off a different kind of light. The hardest thing I ever did was finally lift my hands.

It remains my one act of true submission.

Maggie Gyllenhaal Secretary

Reposting one of my very early pieces that helped me map out the relationship between Maggie and Mack. As I send off a submission of a different kind today, I feel some kind of wonder at how The Memory of Stars grew out of these interludes, and just how much history this little blog contains.

With my body (lay me down)

The only truths I ever told were with my body, Mack.

Every time I laid us down.

The sincerity of the body has been much maligned by the idea that words are more honest than a beating heart. This is what I have learned since then, that my body knew us better. Every confession it ever made, those revelations in your arms. That was the truth of our seven years together.

The history of us that deserves to be told.

(Can I lay by your side. And make sure you’re alright)

So much art that comes from the breaking ~ just look at what you gave me.