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Podcast 2019
Middle Kingdom Podcasts (2005-2017)

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The Language Company
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Her back to a silent world, a beautiful deaf mute dancer in Cambodia scrubs foreign laundry. Her becoming is loneliness, heartbreak and joyful silence.

Her silence is her freedom.

She wrote her story in a spiral notebook. I dreamed a deaf mute woman is married to a literary butcher. She hates him. I am she.

My life is a tedious slave labor laundry-washing job. A hall of mirrors faces me. I am beautiful. I speak-sign love laugh, sing, and dance.

Spoiled whining children and adults run around screaming. I can’t hear them. It’s a blessing.

I read lips pleading I want food. I want clean drinking water. I want love. I want education. I want medicine. I want a chance. I want a little luck.

The Children’s Hospital down the street has twenty-two beds in one room. They are filled with infants wearing air hoses in their nose. They suffer from pneumonia and tuberculosis. A parent holds a tiny hand. The infant mortality rate here is a tragedy.

I.C.U. has five beds. They are occupied.

400 mothers cradling kids wait to see a nurse. She dispenses free generic orange pills.

Life is a killer. Life is a generic placebo.

Mothers are happy to get something, anything. They have no knowledge about modern medicine. One effective blue pill costs $1.00. Parents need fifteen. $15.00 is a fortune. Out of the quest-ion. Rice comes first. Parents accept free ineffective orange pills. Parents need a lucky miracle.

How much does a miracle cost?

Life is a $1 blue pill, said a mother.

Mothers are hopeful. They wait in silence after riding on the back of motorcycles from remote villages. Everyone there had an answer for the child’s sickness. Babbling female genocide survivors sang remedies. Men pounded drums. Relatives and monks prayed and burned incense. A shaman dancing with death smeared chicken blood over a tiny chest. A healer waved smoking banana leaves over a child running a fever.

400 mothers wait forever to see a nurse to get an orange pill. Mothers know the answer to what is life quest-ion. A pill payer prayer, blind luck.

May your short sweet life dance be lighter, faster, cleaner than cool autumn winds caressing ebony’s laugh.

I am an unfinished symphony. I live with visual touch holding a small spinal kiss. Feathers caress my skin. Shivers inside skin love this sensation. Everything is sensation-intuition in my quiet world. A lotus blossoming from mud opens a purple petal. 

My love is voiceless and tenacious. I am passion releasing tension and lust trust. Gentle. Respect. Dignity. Grace. Luminous. Pure. My silent joy is a breath. I inhale suffering and exhale love. 

He comes to me in the heat of the day. I welcome him with my dark eyes gesturing a fingertip on lips...quiet. We share the present. My passion is deep and strong. My language - a smile, brown eyes, calloused hands, worn fingers and rolling sounds whisper: 








a heart

I dream traditional ignorant silence kills others. Truth is a powerful weapon. People are afraid of truth. When I express truth I don’t have to remember what I said. I sign-say what others are afraid to express. My secret lover and I share the same frequency.

I am an anarchist, a linguistic magician. Speaking, living and realizing truth entails risk. If you want to do amazing things you must take amazing risks and suffer greatly.

Daring is not fatal. I am truth incarnate.

I am an objective mirror free of dust.

Everything here is a secret. Shhh. Fingers on my lips. I am secretly engaged to a false dream of going to Australia with Thorny. He is 50, married with family. He works for an NGO here. He builds fake bamboo homes. He plays my father figure and unconscious rescuer. Fat chance.

I come from a poor rural village. I was the last of eleven children. I am 28. I came here with my sister, 32. She got pregnant by a married Kiwi. She had a daughter named Moaning Lisa. She pretends to be married. It’s all show here. He sends her a monthly handout, pays the electricity.

She set up a hair salon business in a 1,001 year-old tourist temple town. It fell through. Salons are a dime a dozen. Thousands of uneducated poor girls from distant provinces can’t/don’t read. They cut. Do their nails. Digit phones. Staring at mirrors is their fate. Some moonlight as beer girls and hostesses. Where is Mr. ATM? Who’s going to save me wearing gloss in the dead of night masking eternal hopelessness.

Unspoken quest-ions, broken lives and starvation seek short-term financial solace.

My sister put me to work with a niece washing clothes. In reality I am a happy slave. I have my sister, niece, food and a safe place to sleep. I make some money. An Australian girl gave me a scooter. I dress nice.

My sister started selling massage service. If I meet a good man - more rare than verbal speech - I maybe let him touch me trusting he’ll take care of me. Short term.

I need help.

Massage has no emotional connection. Touch and go. I have the power to say NO. I have a 5th degree black belt.

I’ve killed more men with silence than you can imagine.

I tell aggressive idiots they can get laid somewhere else. Go find a beer girl. Flash your cash honey.

I do all the washing, ironing and massages. I make small tips. My sister pockets the money. She sits around admiring herself in mirrors, playing with Lisa and talking rubbish on her cell.

I am a voiceless voice of quiet resignation.

Shhh. I have a secret lover while Thorny is in OZ. I am easy going with a willingness to share my honest emotions. No commitment is a concrete-abstraction. My passion is immediate visual truth. My eyes are sensory awareness.

I see voices.

I am a voiceless one quivering lips and tenacious touch with my secret lover. He taught me a Tibetan mantra:

I would rather be a tiger for one day

Than a sheep for a thousand years

My sexual joy is shy. I dance tactile tenderness with silent breath.

My lover comes to me in the heat of the day. He is kind. I welcome him with smiling eyes, gesturing a finger on lips, shhh. My unfinished symphony lives with visual touch holding his kiss on my spine. I do this because I love it. It is my heart-mind fate.

He brings me luck. You can’t see it, measure it or hold it.

I say it I hear it I feel it I got it I know it.

My passion is deep and strong. My unlimited languages speak eyes, smiles and hands. Gestures create us in space. Gestures use me.

My speech voice is missing. I make rolling guttural sounds expressing metaphors, similes, intonations, frequencies, meaning, sensation, time, space, ideas, dreams, relationships, secrets, traditional family values, gratitude, health, wonder, contentment, passion, and joy.

By the time I learned the alphabet it was late in life toward primordial dusk. It was late in the moment before then and now.

I am a long now.

It was late in the whisper of silent air singing from the trash collector’s plastic bottle. Pulling his rolling cart filled with cardboard his muscular rhythm stirs somnolent red dust on broken stones. The majority of people here exist on less than $1 a day.

Rich land, poor people, greedy corrupt politicians.

I see, said a blind girl playing a cello in a demined cemetery. You can’t step in the same river twice.

Possibilities and probabilities, chance and coincidence flutter from my finger fragments like butterflies. Unknown mysterious sensations fling from signing hands. Fingers and hands are language wings. Blossom being.

My lover visualizes me in brown toned tropical worlds. He imagines I join a hearing impaired community, get an education and a real life. He’s a dreamer.

I jump ahead in my story. It won’t happen. I am a slave.

He realizes my movements say I was born to dance.

My gratitude is stillness.

There is a big difference between sitting still and doing nothing.

The hardest thing to do in life is to do nothing with intention as it takes the most out of you as a person mentally and physically.

Some people say nothing exists. I do nothing everyday.

I smell roses. I swallow fresh orange juice. I engage my senses in direct, immediate, raw, emotional experience.

He cannot save me from my destiny. He can only allow the process to flow. My existence is a long flow state.

One day he brought me apples, oranges and mangoes. We spoke with non-speech. He sees our passion is a glimmer of emotional security in the long now. Inside my deep-eyed mischief strangers comfort each other without discrimination.

I am a singularity.

Sensing passion we decipher riddles forecasting speechless tongues. We accept mindfulness with gratitude in quicksilver’s desperate wandering. Boredom’s fear carves a niche in my soul.

Dance saves me.

He is a Lone Wolf with a DNA variant comprehending my inherent instinctive intuitive needs.

It’s a blessing to understand another human being without words.

I hang laundry near the street. Memory’s lie is tempered by talking monkeys. Two boys harvest trash. One barefoot boy plays silent music with a long thin bamboo fiber. The other twirling a walking stick used for prodding garbage carries a plastic bag. Papa’s got a brand new bag.

Local people mill around. Milling around is an art form. They exist with a pure innocent childlike wisdom. Passive is their inherent Buddhist nature. They’ve suppressed their ego. Ease god out.

Others voice imaginary alien freedom ideas. I am Other. I live in my heart-mind luminous universe.

A sofa with a roof on wheels towed by a motorcycle carries fat white Europeans to see 8th century Angkor temples. They are the look and leave people. They are too busy passing through life to feel anything.

Eternity a young handicapped man wearing his new skin-tight artificial plastic left leg and foot shuffles through dust. He walks home. It is everywhere and nowhere. You can’t go home again.

My lover-friend was away for six weeks. He brought me pineapples, a yellow mango and passion fruit. Washing clothes in my silent world, my hair tinted golden hued, I felt ebullient. He touched my spine. Soft, I turned, smiling.

My silent world and calm joy are disguised potentials. We share a silent clear intention. Our private time contains no fear. It is a gentle soft and slow passion. My awareness is trust and authenticity.

I remember everything.

I paint my nails a shade of red-pink. My old thin brown fingers are tired after a day scrubbing clothes. My infinite silent no voice is all. He watches my intense angelic face focus on cuticles. One-by-one. My heart understands his sense of eternal loss in exile, a form of suffering.

He cannot save me.

I sign: I hate the French spies next door. He and his fat wife run a restaurant. He spies for Thorny. They are creeps. Before he left Thorny gave me money to stop doing massage. I agreed. The spies keep an eye on me.

In my silence only my voice is missing.

I am alone in my silent prison. It is a blessing and a curse. It confines me and it liberates me.

Silence is all.

I am one with everything. A singularity.

I am a stream-winner.

All visual colors, sensations, perceptions, imagination and energies of transient tactile existence permeate my being.

I live inside a net of light.

I live in a world of forms.

Everything floats away in a floating world.

Mu. Nothing.

Maya. Illusion.

Attachment is suffering. Suffering is an illusion. I don’t understand suffering. Does suffering mean experiencing taste, sound, temperature, texture and blind love feeling hope, regret, loss and spiritual death and rebirth as a pure being?

Did suffering invent our genocide in a utopian fantasy?

I witness many sad lost blank faces. Strangers eat their face. People wear sadness like discarded rags. I see mouths moving.

I never hear laughter as I pass through with my Dream Sweeper Machine.

What does laughter sound like?


What color is sound? What does it taste like? Is it sweet and sour?

Facts and truth have nothing in common.

Fear and trust dance in stillness. I meditate. Calm. Centered.

I am a stone cold Apsara dancer, a dancing revolutionary evolutionary soul.

I feel like screaming.

The dancing hall inside Preah Khan temple at Angkor Wat is where dancers don’t smile. They dance. They are slave dancers. They dance for the king. The god-king. He resurrected his desire creating new decrees for dancers. They dance for the mighty and powerful. They dance Khmer stories about war, family, harvests, seasons, sun and moon. They are submissive dances of life/death. They dance to celebrate life. A celebration of tranquility is their eternal dance. They dance or die. They wear tinkling bands of gold around wrists and ankles. Diamond diademed crowns and shimmering silk clothing. They do not smile. Their faces are frozen in the trance of dance.

I dance to escape the tyranny of life.

My dance expresses life. I’ve danced all my short sweet existence.

The Hall of Dancers has laterite columns and portals with broken jumbled green mossy stones. Stones whisper dance. Thick gnarled silk-cotton tree roots dancing below the surface of appearances in burial crypts crawl toward dancers. They dance through exposed roots past Shiva and Vishnu, the preserver and destroyer of life. 

Dance is motivated by emotional expression. Dance is about itself. Dance is a free playful existence. Life is a silent dance.

My spirit is destined for obscure happiness. Dancing my existence I welcome intention and intuition by communicating with gestures. My beauty. Symmetry. I am a formless form in a world of forms. Skin textures are perfect. Complete. My life is pure essence. Radiant. I dance with energy and freedom.

I am free. Clear. Pure. Luminous.

When you dance you are connected to the Source. I am the Source, the vast self.

My lack of speech and hearing is a blessing. I am grateful.

My body is my instrument.

I am a golden sprite, a fairy maiden. I am a young, innocent, shy, ferocious wild tiger. My claws feel this intensity. I dance with death deferred.

My needs are met on every level of being. It is sensual, playful.

I gesture to him. Go upstairs. Shhh.

I lock the door. We are safe. I am safe. I take off my clothes. My dance flows. My childlike love caresses air. It is the stillness of dance my free form.

Touch me. Nibble my ear lobes. Kiss my neck. Use your tongue. Ask me without words if I want it gentle, medium or hard.

I lie down. Hold me. Breathe deep. Exhale eighteen inches out. Deep space. Empty your mind.

Give me a full body massage. Start with my feet. They are erogenous zones of pleasure. Touch pressure points on my souls. My brain is an erogenous zone. Work up my calves massaging lower back along the spine expanding out across muscles and shoulders. My neck muscles are tight from doing laundry. Knead tension out. I’ll tell you how it feels with gestures of pleasure.

Listen and feel my body. Hear my breath exhaling sensation. Roll me over. Let your tongue do the talking. Stimulate me slow and easy. I feel your tongue caress ear lobes and neck down across breasts. Caress aroused purple nipples. Move south to my belly. Clear the department of the forest before tonguing my little button and labia rose. It’s highly sensitive. Slow. This is a powerful erogenous spot. Explore my blood filled flowers. Tongue lips deeper. Inhale my fragrance.

Feel my response as I move with you. Dance with me. Explore my mysterious cave with a slow moving tongue. Feel my response. Sense my breathing. If it’s fast and shallow I’m excited. I press your face deeper into my forest getting what I need.

My body is your teacher.

Relaxed, he signs asking what I dream about. My imagination, perception and sensation means scrubbing cloth, wringing out water, hanging cloth on hangers, ironing cloth, folding cloth, bagging cloth, weighing cloth, handing cloth to strangers, accepting money, smiling and dreaming of freedom.

I dream dance.

He traces my forehead, breasts and jealous thighs. He dreams I have a real life with real opportunities.

Courage. Self-esteem. Dignity. Authenticity.

He takes me far away to a beach. I see silent crashing blue white waves. Feeling hot sun on my face I run into blue/green/white water shouting The Sea! The Sea!

A long white cotton dress feels invisible on my skin. I am brown and content. I feel free. He memorizes my small brown hands, heart, head and lifelines. They are heavy deep real and calloused from laundry. He is gentle with me.

I am a hungry animal. I release my repressed sexual energy. I trust him. I give myself to him.

I am a slave. He cannot save me. This is an unpleasant fact.

Edging my skin realizing sensations I feel safe and protected. I curl into his arms.

Without words I say my family is poor. There is no chance for us. He’s been in country long enough to know how my culture works.

My father is seventy-three and ill. I have many aunts, uncles, nephews, nieces and abandoned relatives. When they see a white face they smell money. They beg for money with fake reasons. They play their woe is me sympathy card. They are traditional and narrow-minded. They suffer from ignorance, envy and jealousy and want.

Desire, greed and survival is their master. I told them Thorny is my benefactor. Thorny thinks I was abused as a child. He found a doctor in Phony Baloney to assess my condition. They said it was too late to do anything to help me. My life is more silent laundry.

Thorny talked to my father using an interpreter. Thorny asked specifics - was she abused? Father said I wasn’t abused. Was she hit in the head as a child? Did she suffer from a head injury? No, no, no, my father said. He said something happened to me when I was two. I think they are afraid of Thorny and don’t want to tell him the truth. He flew home for three months. He plans to come back and get paperwork so I can leave and join his family in OZ. Fat chance.

My luck ran out.

I don’t hold my breath. I dance.

I exhale my dancing quest. I showed my lover some documents and he’s happy for me. If it’s possible, he signed. He knows my father has to approve any relationship with Thorny depending on cash amount. Marriage is a big maybe like my sister did. She was smart, played her guilt card, hooked the Kiwi and got pregnant. He paid.

If my family agrees they determine a pre-paid wedding dollar amount, say $3 grand. There’s a pre-nuptial waiting period, filing papers. Pay greasy greedy officials. The government requires foreigners to prove they make $2,500 a month. Everyone has a hand out. A wedding party will cost $200-$5,000 to impress friends with our social status. Big deal.

My father is afraid to lose me. He will say no. My lazy sister needs a slave. This is my fate. I am happy. It’s all I’ve known and will know.

My life dance is ambiguity, acceptance, independent detachment and creative imagination.

Dance is isolated yet cooperating and independent. I believe in the magic of dance.

When you dance for a fleeting moment you feel alive.

What do I see? I see a circle of movement, a connected unity, language in space. There are five rhythms in dance. You start with a circle. It’s a circular movement from the feminine container. She is earth. Then you have a line from the hips moving out. This is the masculine action with direction. He is fire.

Chaos is next, a combination of a circle and line where male and female energies interact. This is transformation.

After chaos is the lyrical. A leap. A release. This is air. The last element of dance is stillness. Out of stillness is born the next movement.

I’ll dance until I die.

What is life?