September 2010-Jupiter was not her real name
She was standing in the middle of the common area yelling. Swearing. Waving her arms about when I met her.
I could see it was an act, and yet it wasn’t an act. It was go hard or go home.
Later, we danced in the courtyard, in our castle made of chalk. I ripped her shirt down the sides, took the arms off and tied it down in strips from breast to hip. The short sleeve she pulled over her head and let hang down in a triangle like some sort of psych ward cowboy fashionista. She told me Jupiter was not her real name. Her story was rough, daughter of a hippie druid and a small city rockstar, left alone with her brain and sedated into mushy when they caught her.
She was 17 and in her eyes I saw my eyes. I could have been lost in this world, without the love of my parents. Only a boy came to visit and she was forward, this woman child. She had him. She would probably destroy him. She was wild, and didn’t want to be tamed. She gave me her rock and showed me her drawings. She asked if I thought she was crazy.
In a hospital room in reality or a dream she tore a stream from a mattress. Made red foam roses and flooded the place. That’s how she got here. Fought a police man and screamed at the heavens. She probably bit someone.
In my arms she was a child, eager to please, sad, beautiful and alone. We sat on the floor while she summoned magic and I listened, because listening is good. Like a movie, I watched her story. She carried all she had in her pack.
I ran in the halls. Slowing down past the nurses window so they wouldn’t see me. I ran until my heart was pounding, I was out of breath. Like a caged animal. A lone mama wolf in the zoo. But this was lock down baby, and I begged to get in.
Jupiter was sitting at the pay phone crying. They weren’t coming. No one was coming. I held her hand on her shoulder, silently. She gasped between tears-” I just need to get over this fucking affliction. Parental addiction! Give me your potion! Give me my ration! Make me sleep! Forget my convictions!”
They ushered me away from her and gave her a handful of little pills. In a few days she was okay. In a few days she went away. She was jumping and flying and laughing and rolling her way outta there.
Lady child Jupiter, let me hold you
In this beautiful prison
where they feed us eggs and berries
Here, you must not run, you must not cry
even though in the kind faces
are rapists and lunatics.
Brief licks of freedom and I am
a child again, pushing the limits
You tore up a room to see what would happen,
hit the ground running
whispering around the edges
of double consciousness
but the darkness lives without.
I am afraid of the men who cut off the heads of women and children
in countries far away
of machetes on buses and bloody heads rolling
to a stop at my feet.
In my mind the circus is setting up and taking down
while making lists and letting the parade get started.
No knights in shining armour
In the end, don’t run off with the first nice man to hold your hand
and save your life.
Hold on, hold on, hold on
you’re going down, down, down.
Walking so close to the edge
you’re star dust.