CHARGING THE BONES
SFW ( yor’ local deep fried witch) recently lolled about and amuck on Jekyll Island, Georgia for a week. There was fried oyster shenanigans, low country boil tomfoolery and none of us looked at a watch when dumping 5 buck wine in our coffee cups. Somewhere between too much smoke and too little sleep, a super moon showed up–appropriately on the astrological Beltane eve–and this lil’ ol’ witch tiptoed down to the sand with a bottle and bare feet. And so . . . my big toe went to work, crafting circles and carving names, while the youngest picked a guitar in blue moonlight on the rocks. Several folks thought it a good idea to traipse down and ponder the symbols in the sand (several ran, two smiled, one said “Happy Beltane) and then the moon shooed the sand rats away and hushed all sound but ocean. And that’s when it happened.
And no, not sharing. Panty color, government middle names and that night are my little secrets. Well, that and 1982-1985. (My momma reads this blog, y’all, and still threatens my butt with a wooden spoon from time to time. And she’s a lady. Wouldn’t cotton to my airing those years, I ‘spect.) But it went something like: my hair felt long, my bones drew down into salt and something broken and red laid down and wept under Her great memory.
Just lay your head back on the ground, let your hair spill all around me, offer up your best defense, this is the end of the innocence. 
I’m not afraid of much in this mundane world. I’ve had knives to my throat, slept in cardboard boxes, swallowed the wrong/too many pills and lived to see my hair turn white and my social security grow into something of substance. Regrets don’t factor in my tractor–I find them redundant and self-masturbatory at best–and I am, overall, unafraid of boogeymen, ghosts and my rusted trunk of a past. But . . .
Aging is getting my goat.
I’m not ready. Not prepared for diapers, wrinkles, the risk of a broken hip when screwing like a wild child and I am certainly not warm and fuzzy on the idea of some fancy doctor dude taking away my butter and wine. But that’s not the real problem. It seems to me that the girl/woman/crone who sat in the sand that night was afraid of something, after all. Seems like it’s story time again . . .
Granma. Rocking chair, sweet tea and my babies in the house counting quarters. She’s looking into the oranged sun, her eyes almost gray against the glow, and I see her. All of her. And a deep, wrenching fear slices across my chest and lands in my stomach. I say: Granma. Don’t get too old. To which she smiles: Baby, I don’t like the alternative. And there it is, y’all. There it sits, slapping its knees like someone is gonna give it a biscuit.
Getting old is not for the faint of heart. Death is like a Tuesday. Getting old is work.
She was a tenacious old broad.
Last Thursday week, I’m sitting here in my back forty throwing out a magic lesson to beat the band. I only had two hours–we tend to go on for a spell–and I was under the gun to hit that place where the universe congeals like glue in a circle. Oathe of Secrecy aside, we were pondering, um, levels of existence in respect to our acknowledgement of those plains. I have this beautiful, Balinese spirit chaser who became part of the conversation-Kodak, the frog-whose primary concern is to snort out negative energy and hound it out the door. (I’m extraordinarily fond of this wooden fella.) Now, the last three nights my froggy friend has hung over my bed . . . pointed at me. I was right tickled at this development at first, as it proved the legend a bit and as I’m a sucker for a good scary story. That is, until it occurred to me that it’s job is to chase boogers out of corners, basements and old, salty witches.
And so I sit here. Thinking about my little magical box of negativity. About an hour ago, I opened the lid, batted all the cobwebs away and took a gander at the interior. When the dust cleared, I saw her: a rather interesting looking old woman with my eyes bound in rope. Well. Slap my ass and call me drama. That’s not gonna do. She might need to become a grandma, make cookies, grow belladonna and concoct hot buttered rum at Samhain. She might need to throw her fingers into a night sky and give some fireflies a show for once. She might know some cool ass shit, have some wisdom, tell some audacious stories while smoking a pipe. Hell, she might even be able to screw.
If only I would loosen the rope a bit.
Grandma–I forgot that day on the porch. Turns out, I don’t like the alternative either. Turns out, I need to kick my own ass.
Get busy living, or get busy dying. 
So, this post is gonna be water hole short on account of: a student just showed up with the universe in his eyes. The sun is waning across my lap like gold dust and whiskey, and I have cheddar stuffed jalapenos wrapped in bacon bubbling brown in the oven.
The landslide has brought me down. But there’s always bacon.
I reckon I’ve made my choice.
1. End of the Innocence, Dan Hagerty.
2. Shawshank Redemption.