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kiota and academic spasms

Here at school we are halfway through exams. Some kids are done and on planes flying home today. Others still walk around in a daze. Flipping flash cards, staring at laptops, editing in a frenzy and sending in final papers online. You know. Many of us are right there right now.

This is like almost everywhere else in American colleges. Except Evergreen.

So. Connecting the dots a bit, solving a triangle here.

Their year is divided into four Quarters. Ki's new one started on Monday March 31 and doesn't finish until June sometime. She was wait-listed for some "areas of concentration" [they don't have courses in the traditional sense] and that's why she told me she didn't know what her schedule would be until just before I flew out there on April 7. So we could arrange our meetings around that.

So: why this is important.

All new discussion groups. All new people, mostly. It was in front of a new group that she read "Requiem For The Silent" on Friday April 4. This was the first public announcement of her sexual attack at nine years old, which we here had known about for a long *long* time, as she healed little by little through writing about it for us.

Fifth day into the brand-new Quarter.

Public. New class members. Anna-courage in amounts so big that I can't get my mind around that, even now. Not in front of counselors. Not in front of Rape Crisis Center Advocates. In front of new students. For some of whom, it was their first introduction to her.

Devastated her.

Big stress.

"I was SHAKING."

Some fallout from that is why she OD'd on drugs, slept practically the whole day and night one day the next week, and missed the writing class meeting with the Dean, which pissed off her other prof so much that Kiota was in real danger of being dropped. There goes some scholarship money. More big stress. At the very beginning of the new Quarter. By that time I was right there. In some ways, as dazed as she was.

Academic spasms, indeed.

Cascade. Then we all know what happened with Ruud.

All this on top of ten *years* of hurt and scars and feeling alone most of the time. Not all, by any means: when she was happy, she was damned amazingly happy and I can hear her laugh easily still. Even in those last four days.

April 13 in a new lighted angle.

From my POV what happened was very brave as much as very tragic. I posted about that in her LJ, in real time: by then JetBlue had ferried me back to Boston.

You can't really take a candle into the eyes of your heart until the candle is brightly projected against the darkness. {At least, I can't.} Otherwise, if *everything* is dazzling light, you don't see it at all.

A bright candle: hers was, and it is now.



( 6 comments — Leave a comment )
May. 6th, 2008 06:47 pm (UTC)
Wow. Thank you for that.

I think I'm still searching for my words. I love these posts more than you know, though.

Again... thank you.
May. 6th, 2008 08:07 pm (UTC)
Yeah ... I just write what I feel and what I'm guided to. That Kiota has left us is one thing, and that so many of you are silently or comment-wise comforted is quite another. I am really blessed by having each of you come and go, stay if you will, and return. It is working both ways, too: I've been friended by so many who have beautiful and healing words to say to me in their own posts as well.

Somehow I very strongly feel that she wants this to happen. Otherwise, it wouldn't ... it just all simply is spreading out from how large and warm her heart is and how much love she has for us all, each one of us. World without end.
May. 7th, 2008 02:35 am (UTC)
I keep thinking about how she would have been so affected by reading that paper out loud. I had such huge anxiety when I was in university I could barely say two words out loud never mind read something of that magnitude in front of a class. She was so brave to go through with it, I can't even imagine.
May. 7th, 2008 06:20 am (UTC)
Yeah, Blue*, the impression she left us was that she didn't just plow through to the end and then be overcome, it was happening little by little throughout. The way she structured it, it begins to get more and more ominous, with lines like "Upstairs is bad" and how he was sitting at the head of the table but his face was blank in her memory....

She already had explored her rape memories much more viciously and dramatically in her fiction piece "Relations", completed in Feb. 2005 with lots of time-jumps from 2005 backwards....which I think is something that she would never be able to bring herself to read out loud anywhere.

I've often wondered about the closeness to her birthdays. The day after she turned 16, also in 2005, she wrote a stream-of-consciousness rant that reads like a descent into pure hell. Every word is razor-sharp and bleeding. Now, in this Spring, she was approaching 19 --- and nothing in her inner life had really improved, in fact it had gotten much more tortured and fractured. One way to look at it is, that with each passing year, she was getting further into pain and loneliness and further away from being how she'd been at eight. Most of us would welcome birthdays as times to look forward into more light and accomplishments and bigger plans. For her, just the other way around: more and deeper darknesses.

So: bravery, to the max. I can't even imagine, either.

I'm now turning to your inbox to send a private message: thank you Blue!
(Deleted comment)
May. 8th, 2008 03:20 pm (UTC)
Title of short essay she changed from "A Childhood Memory". Text of both = same.
She read it in class, I posted about it here.

Lots more terrifying and graphic was "Relations", short story completed in 2005 which takes off from same rapes.

Will Email you both of them soonish.

Even MORE glad you were happy lovers. You'll see why.

How she was ever able to put up with boyz at all remains mostly beyond me. x.x
May. 8th, 2008 08:39 pm (UTC)
kk so I just did this: Gmailed you more of our girl. <3

she'd want you to see and feel. hell, she'd want you, period.
( 6 comments — Leave a comment )


kiota too late for the stars
Moonfire Marion Bridge / Brad

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