Tuesday, January 24, 2012


Winner! in bright, bold orange letters.  Every year can be better than the next.  The vibrating of my cell phone reverberates through the black wood of my desk, reaching even into my wrists on piles and piles of books, and it's comforting because someone loves me enough to want to talk to me.  A jar full of money looks rather imposing until you look closer and realize they're all ones and you're not as rich as you hoped.

This summer, I'm going to climb a mountain and sing a hymn into Colorado air, I'm going to sit on a hill and blow bubbles into the early July air, I'm going to dream of ice cream until I'm standing in front of that little shop and that precious old man who owns it, and I'm going to return to my true love.  I have a  cappuchino candle on my table and it makes the air smell of sophistication.

Stress is a little like a giant elephant standing in a room that I try to avoid until it steps on my toes and I can't help but cry.  Jars of Lipsmackers tell you that even though she was the only girl, she was still a girl.  Jars of pens tell you even though she's the only watercolor rainbow in a world of ROY G BIVs, she was still an artist and would be until the world ended.

Beauty gained and lost, taller, shorter, thicker, thinner-- people change and they're still the same even though they're completely different in every way, inside and out.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Five Hundred is a Large Number (So is Fifty Thousand)

The frost dances across the windows and the world swirls behind the icy glass as the truck putts along the rough road across the property.  The January air is nippy and presses against the glass, turning my warm breath on the window into a misty layer between me and the wind. I’m bundled up, my hands pressed between my thighs to keep warm in their mittens.
The only sound is the hum of the engine of the old truck.  
It smells of old cigarettes and stale air fresheners and age.  The tattered leather seat is hard beneath me, stuffed too full of stiff foam.  I lean hard against the back as the truck starts up a hill.  Staring out the window, the scenery is white and brisk and wintry in the least inviting manner.
We level out, pull to a stop, and the truck jerks as my uncle presses in the brake and puts it in park.  I pull on the door handle and remember to jiggle the bare metal to get it to catch.  It opens with a rusty creak and the frigid air blasts me.
My uncle is already out, his hands in the pockets of his black wool coat.  He’s thin and looks cold.  His plaid scarf covers his face up to his intellectual black glasses, his expensive shoes covered in soft, crunchy snow.  His eyes are bright as he stares into the white woods.
I mimic him, stuffing my mittens into my pockets as I meander out.  The wind bites right through me, but I don’t complain.  I just hunker down deeper into my own coat, breathing in and feeling the hot breath moisten the collar around my face.  


"Your greatest sin is not the abortion that you've asked forgiveness for, or the adultery, or-- whatever it is in your life, in your past that you're ashamed of, that keeps hounding you.  Your greatest sin is not that; your greatest sin is not believing God's word when God says that you are forgiven! Your greatest sin is your unbelief!  You want to repent of something, friend?  Stop repenting of sins that you've already repented of, and repent of your unbelief." ~ Rich Nathan, as quoted by House of Heroes in Voices

Friday, January 13, 2012

Voices of the Voiceless

I sat with my friend-- her name is Sarah, but we ought to call her the Tormentor, because she's always teasing me about something or other (with ample reciprocation, mind you)-- on a bench at her family's orchard.  We were tying short strips of fabric onto longer, knitted pieces, making rag-tag scarves, fluffy with color. We were doing it for her older sister Elizabeth (affectionately dubbed Zab) and her company, Liz Alig.

Sarah the Tormentor was telling me about a most interesting bet.  Zab had bet Sarah couldn't stand buying only fair trade and recycled clothing, and next time Sarah bought something that wasn't fair trade she would have to buy Zab whatever shirt she wanted, and Sarah said "heck I'll take that bet."

Her family . . . the girls are rather stubborn creatures.

That was about three years ago. (Or four.)

Sarah and Zab are still going strong . . . and not only that, but listening to them talk about the benefits of fair trade really makes me think.

Saturday, January 7, 2012

Young Life

If you could take a moment to pray for a darling little boy named Daniel, I would really appreciate it.  I've known him since he was two, and yesterday he was diagnosed with acute leukemia.  Pray he and his family would feel God's presence even through this.  Pray he would be healed.  Healed fast.

He's going to have to start chemotherapy very soon.

Gosh-- I don't even know what else to say.

Christina Kuri Icarus

Thursday, January 5, 2012

So Do It.

If there's one simple question I've mused over far too often, it's one I think a lot of people muse over a lot.  There are just so many possibilities that it entails.

What do you want to do?

I want to do so much. So, so much.

But what do I want more than anything in the entire world is simple, just like the question.

I just want to make something beautiful.

And yet, inside of that simple sentence, there is so incredibly much.

I want to use words that can reach your heart, for my dreams to be yours, for you to feel what I do, the tragedy, the beauty, the happiness, the million dimensions of the thousand things that go through my brain as I choose--carefully-- every word.  

I want to have a camera that captures the beauty that's all around us all of the time, and not only the outward beauty but the inward.  I want to capture the beauty that I see every day.  The light through the window.  The dandelions in the yard.  The sky-- vibrant and blue and so terrifically alive. I want to share the tiny things.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Never Forget

I always knew what was right and what was wrong.  It was ingrained into me from as long as I can remember.  Daily I was told by parents and elders what was good, righteous, and told not to do that which I naturally wanted to do; the evil and the bad things were not to be considered.
But things weren’t always right.  I knew what was right and what was wrong and I knew what I should do and I did it.  I did everything I ought.  I worked hard to be the very best that I could, and I was.
But on the inside things weren’t right.  I was acting and pretending and being a good person but I wasn’t and the day that I realized that—that I was a despicable human being for just acting, acting and pretending to be good while on the inside I was seething and hideous and disgusting and hateful—. 
That was when I first sunk the shovel into the heady ground, pulled up the first tuft of scraggly grass, and hurled it aside.
The beginnings of the hole were solitary, far from my parents and those elders.  No one knew that it existed, and at first it was just a small trench, a dent in the earth.  I was the only one who knew it was there.  I was the only one it affected.
But every day I returned and took out a chunk.  Some days it was just an inch of the brown dirt, just a tiny bit of hatred toward the gory, horrifying monster on the inside.  Other days I would flee from those I knew, flee from them congratulating me on my good deeds and my wonderful heart, and I would attack that ground with the ferocity of a burning, guilty soul.  Those days the hole grew deep.