Thursday, December 29, 2005

mr. zimmerman's 115th dream

Ah me I busted out
Don't even ask me how
- mr. zimmerman*

feeling ridiculously hopelessly romantic and also at the very same moment, impossibly, absolutely crying.

let me sing you a waltz...out of nowhere, out of my blues...

baby, you are gonna miss that plane
i know.

sidewalks. cafe lights, tea stains on pages. mascara shadowed eyes in the morning with ruffled hair and thinking of the truth. movie addictions. bananas foster. bursting into tears and then babbling incoherently while pacing. humming and dancing in apartments with wood floors and big windows and record players. [lists]. dr. pepper and diet coke (not together). traffic lights hanging from lampposts over bridges made of steel and suspended like unravelling film.

again with this bullshit? no. i won't take it. are you bored? i am not intermediate entertainment. there was a time when that would have left me begging for more...and i'm not far enough removed to forget how it (still) sometimes makes my head spin...but not now. it's hard to see passed all the promise (because it's there...humming in the background like some twisted soundtrack made of silk and steel wool and rusted barbed wire) but i know what's behind it...and as much as i'd love to ignore it and pretend like ignorance really is bliss, i won't. those 3 seconds, so many months and days and hours ago, ingrained themselves on the insides of my eyelids in inverted colors like radioactive heart beats, and i am not stupid enough to open my eyes and forget. i'm jaded, you're careless, and we're both walking parallel to nothing that will ever be.

"All a writer has to do to get a woman is to say he's a writer. It's an aphrodisiac." saul bellow (awfully cavalier of him to say...but oh so true.)

*bob dylan, of course.

Monday, December 26, 2005


honest eyes in precarious situations
drinking catawba juice straight from the bottle
drinking smirnoff straight from the bottle
small gray puppies with blue eyes and big feet
rediscovering old dusty corners
machinery row and the electric earth cafe
yeruba mate and lapsang souchong (they both smell like bonfires...)
hand written notes
holiday naps
making christmas/hannukah/kwanzaa cards for veterans in coffee shops with my wifey
not knowing what to do with said cards after they've been made
old men singing bob dylan covers
warm skin
recognizing what i don't want

Your mouth is open wide
The lover is inside
And all the tumults done
Collided with the sign
You're staring at the sun
You're standing in the sea
Your body's over me

Monday, December 19, 2005

deadly nightshade

i'm in need of some deadly nightshade.
or maybe a trip to thailand.
possibly a camera, so i can actually take pictures of things.
sleep is another possibility.
a muse? yes.
the bamboo plant i got, but what about the iguana?
bob dylan was right about everything... ani too.
i have the strangest dreams...

we were driving in the car, you with your black down vest, me with pink rubber galoshes, sticking out just past the seat. i remember feeling like it was our secret, that i was sitting in the front, that we were driving on the "wind-y" road, that we had stopped at the gas station and you let me have a sip of your coffee even though she always told you not to. there weren't many other cars, which made the headlights stretch far off into the distance; i always tried to find the end of their luminous echoes, but they moved too quickly, running ahead of my eyes. and around every curve, across every hill and valley, when another set of lights approached, with that glowing above the horizon which announced the arrival of some other being into our universe, i would stare in rapture. incredulous that they would DARE to intervene on our time, our time! and also in terror that they would discover us, tell someone where we were, break the sanctuary of that rusting ford sedan into a thousand discordantly unequivocal pieces...but would that really have been so bad?

because the world owes me nothing 
and we owe each other the world

i have one constant ache in the back of my mind, the pit of my stomache, the middle of my heart... for domino.
no matter how many years pass [has it been almost 4 already?] i look at that picture and i see this rose gray appaloosa with molten chocolate
in his eyes and i still remember the way he smelled in the summer. there was a sort of stillness there, in the way he would come...he settled
my uncertainties, my insecurities, my doubts. as strong of unrequieted love i've felt from no other. he gave me a body to lean against, warm and
full and steady, all the things i wasn't. there is something that horses do which no other creature is as wonderful at doing - as strange as it may
sound to someone who doesn't have an afinity for these wildly beautiful things, the most comforting moments in my life [...surpassing hugs from old
friends and bowls of soup in january and sleeping in on sundays...] were those in which horses placed their noses in my outstretched hands, pressed
their massive heads against my ribcage and just stayed still. not needing to place to be but there, in that place, with me. dom did that a
lot. hugs from horses are like hugs from people, but better somehow. not better, i suppose, because they're different sorts of hugs...but regardless
of the fact that horses have no arms, those hugs are just as good. the funny thing is, dom was not a calm horse by nature. as an appaloosa, he was
inherently high-strung, skiddish, and stubborn. he was even the first (and only) horse to throw me from his back. yet there was this surreal connection
between us, an understanding. i did not hold those lapses in sanity against him, and he did not define me by my faults.i don't think about him everyday...
in fact a lot less often than i used to. but every so often, every few weeks, a prickle appears behind my nose and my eyes start to grow hazy and
i bite my lip for a moment...all because of dom.

David: You're not blind. You're drinking Jack Daniels, and when you drink
Jack, you start in with that...
Frank Sinatra, she shot me down, give
me a cigarette, "King of Sad" thing.
Brian: That I do. Give me a cigarette.

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

buggers, i'm trying to save their souls...

-mental cartoon-
.guy is holding hands with girl as they stroll on beach.
girl: i've never had this much fun on a first date
guy farts
girl:did you just fart?
guy: no, i think i stepped on a duck
-wide shot: duck running away, seriously hurt.
-colin mortensen

the entire world is being erased by snow, one cold-hearted molecule at a time. the world is coming to an end! the stars are falling all around, turned to embers and ash, and no one is making eye contact until they're forced to run for shelter in the warmth of central heating and the indoors. i really would like to be a sarcastic asshole today, but i'm in too strange of a philosophical mood. recognize!

being an existentialist can be either a) the most comforting thing in the world, or b) absolutely terrifying. i like to think that it is both sometimes, but that's just because i thrive on ambivalence. people, for example. my favorites are the ones who have so many levels it baffles my mind trying to figure every angle into clarity...except it never fully happens because they're never fully finished. you can be an asshole and i'll still adore you just as much! in fact, it's likely. as long as you make me realize big bloody-bodied truths and notice tiny infintessimally small details and really understand that you're being geniune. this is crucial.

Cuz I have had something to prove | As long as I know something | That needs improvement
And you know that everytime I move | I make a woman's movement
And first you decide what you've gotta do | Then you go out and do it
And maybe the most that we can do
| Is just to see eachother through it
We make our own gravity | To give weight to things | Then things fall and they break
And gravity sings

i miss my classes.

what?! who does that?!

apparently, i do. call me sentimental, call me a loser, call me what you will. i've enjoyed the people who have surrounded me this semester. maybe it's a sort of bittersweet affection in some cases, especially when in conjunction with the grueling, grating, obnoxiously difficult work that is involved in class, but as i have a tendency to become attached to places when i find a sense of solidarity and connection, that's whats up. to my writing class...thank you for being a friend to my mind. toni morrison was speaking of something totally different when she coined that phrase, but it's really what the class has been to me. not to mention that so many of you are sooo talented i feel like a failing amateur in comparison, or that you've given me some of the greatest compliments of my entire existence, but really...its that i can see bits of myself in all of you and i really crave that. this weird haven of self-criticism and terror and amusement and ridiculousness and infatuation and identity, that only really comes when you find people together who have a surreal sort of similarity haunting their staggering differences. i hope we keep some semblance of that...but even if we don't, we'll all be able to go read each other's sh*t when it's published, eh?

[sh*t being censored because it isn't actually shitty. i refer to it as such because the connotation of that word in this particular context embodies so much more than anything else ever could. talk about a contradiction in the pervertation of the english language...i also happen to believe that fuck really is one of the most versatile words available to our tongues. i adore that word.]

ILS...i've really already discussed the very twisted way we became a group (bonding over the most ridiculous amount of studying and mind boggling information ever is rather masochistic.) but i'll miss that too. i'll miss the class as well, even if allen is a pretentious asshole. but as i mentioned earlier, i usually end up loving assholes. hating, yes...but the love is more important. the entire history of the universe according to...fair trade coffee and tapestries? i guess so. we don't know exactly what we were supposed to take out of it...but i think that's ok. existentialism and solidarity! woo.

history discussion is a bunch of crazy people talking about huge ideas that have eaten the life out of society and are threatening to eat us for dinner and spit us all out in a pile of ravaged trash and apathetic bull. we refuse! and while we're doing it, we'll make all the pop culture references and go on as many tangents as possible.

hot raspberryrum chocolate
the raspy quality of the british voice when speaking of grave things
a new ladies' man, and consequentially, colin mortensen
the onion
buttons and home-made holiday cards
dirty blue shoes
radiohead song titles

wretched little heathens. buggers, all they'll eat is spaghettios. i'm trying to save their souls, but they just won't have it.

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

taking over small countries

walking down the street in the cold snow...hands together

no one ever touches each other when its nice outside, never holds hands until its so cold you need the human contact just to stay sane

down the sidewalk trudging, arms linked, into the building. held beneath the protective arm, just under, up against the collar bone where its safest, most comfortable. having the most peculiar conversation, realizing what is going on - a look from one, silently whispering in the back of your mind
you're done.
down the stairs, still connected. so real! and i hear my name calling from the walls...was it you? who knows, but i'll remember the chills for the rest of my days.

i am terribly frustrated. and also sick of being single [surprise]. sick (and!) tired of writing about the same shit every time i pick up a pen. tired of feeling inadequate at life. i am angry!

least favorites:
.negative windchills.
.early morning lectures that make no point.
.boys who play hot and cold.
.always being sleepy.
.leaving behind people at semester.

something needs to happen. something huge. the taking over of something, a building, a city, a country. we should all be armed and taking over small countries. or rioting. or no: an orgy. there should be an orgy.

Tuesday, November 22, 2005

how the universe changed color

Quis hic locus, qui regio? Qui mundis placa...
[what world is this, what kingdom? What shores of what world?]

and days like these are why i love this campus, this place of streetlights and foggy mornings [foggy mornings on buses travelling at 75 miles an hour through tennessee...i swear i saw them marching, troops coming forwards like spectors in the dim early morning light, darkness still sinking deep into the air, permeating like water in jeans, staining the place between those marching skeletons and my eyes.] this place of jasmine rice and mango lassi's and lounging on couches in warm rooms filled with laughing and sex (and the city...) and apple mango tea. senior citizens who climb fences and protest the world's atrocities, very small children who drum and drum and drum their hearts out, hippies with layered thermals and fraying jeans and dreadlocks, social causes dripping from their tongues like liquid methane, fueling their bleeding liberal hearts with ammunition to fight. fight until the whole world rests at night, beneath the silences of a global paz, lying in the comforts of their peaceful beds, filled with dreams about blackbirds who sing and men who throw themselves into the sea like porpoise, and how the universe changed color. the campus comes alive to me in small evocations of inspiration, these tiny glimmers of total, extraordinary greatness, as if the stones of the streets themselves were filled with the spirits of the muses. i see all of these secrets, tracing their paths through the eyes, through the feet and the hands and the hearts of all of these people who surround me everyday, and all i want to do is discover them. every - single - one. what does that glance of your eye mean? upwards and over, across the table, the one that no one ever thinks anyone will ever notice... but they do. just for a moment. what does it feel like to run down state without a thought in your mind for the way its freezing outside, or the way your hair is flying behind you like streaks of golden streamers, or the way the curve of your throat, head thrown back in laughter, must bring him to love you for the rest of his days. what is it about boys with cigarettes and girls with curving waists and elegant shoulder blades, the girls from the paintings in harlem and the boys from the folk songs in california...what is it about these people that is magnetic? i love these people. i love these secrets. they are like oxygen for me... the hidden qualities of people, who are so very protective of those enigmatic explosions. they are protective because these secrets determine their identities...their very insides, their bones and the blood cells and the tracings of that nervous energy which keeps you tapping your foot.

as much as i hate to admit it...i miss rochester.

listening to: new hip hop that will make you fall in love with hip hop all over again and this is a mix for tegan swanson who... (mixes sent to me by my loverly friend ms. katherine shireen assef. thanks, doll.)

reading: the master and margarita, invisible cities, and
a rumor of war

(soon to be)
eating:mashed potatoes, sweet potatoes, pumpkin pie, and possibly some turkey. possibly. i do enjoy naps...tryptophan is my friend.

Elaine Miller: [to William] Your Dad was so proud of you. He knew you were a predominantly accelerated child.
Anita Miller: What about me?
Elaine Miller: You are rebellious and ungrateful of my love.

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

ecstasy on the inside of the atmosphere

some live creature on the roses...the sound of water was in the room and through the waves came the voices of birds singing...fear no more, says the heart in the body; fear no more. -mrs. dalloway

why am i so fascinated by blackbirds and seagulls?! the ocean? city scapes and war stories and curling copper wire? these are beautiful, ugly things, brutal and cold and violent. [does that make sense? beautiful ugly? i understand the paradox, but i do not mean ugly as in the opposite of aesthetically pleasing. i use ugly to mean raw and unabashed and real. perhaps ugly is the wrong word. i don't know if i can say for sure...] some things just can't be explained.

i think my adoration for seagulls stems from two places, two drastically different periods of my life, in fact...two ridiculously plain moments. regardless...every time i hear a seagull, there is a shudder beneath my skin. [if i am to explain this in chronological order] i realized my obsession backwards. the second time a seagull truly imbedded itself in my self was a lovely, humid april evening freshman year of college. sitting in the dark, with the room to myself (as cath was elsewhere) i was contemplating turning on the lights so as not to fall asleep. i had been enjoying the glow of the christmas lights too much to actually turn on the ugly [regular meaning] florescent light, but i knew that if i didn't do it soon, i would fall asleep on the floor, as is my habit. suddenly, piercing through the silence and the peacefully muggy evening aura, came the haunting cry of a seagull. once...twice...three times. melancholy and filled to bursting with this terribly evocative emotion, the bird was tearing a hole in my brain and bringing me to the point of breathlessness. i remember leaping towards the window sill, thrusting my head into the screen and staring out into the blackness, as if hoping that somehow i might find him-- surfer of the skies, traverser of the tailwinds-- and see him with my own two eyes. his cry continued to emanate through the night, but i never did catch a glimpse of his ghostly body. he never found the one he was calling for either...i think that maybe, as there was no other voice...a mate or a friend or another soul in the moment, that this is why he was so beautiful to me.
the first time i was truly affected by seagulls is really remembered as an amalgamation of my childhood, as a montage of images from my adventures on lake superior with my grandparents. lake superior is part of my history, part of the history my grandparents have attempted to instill in me anyway, as it is a foundation for both of their lives, and so, indirectly, for mine. every summer they would take me up to the lake for a day. driving in their car we passed through shadows and the feathered raptures of the trees in northern wisconsin, until suddenly bursting into the sunshine and the gusting, lustful wind of superior. what i remember does not come in totality, but rather in chunks and random images and a blur of color and sound. it will not make sense to anyone, i'm almost sure of it. but this is what comes. windblown blonde hair, turquoise slip ons, giant iron anchors dropped in the midst of land, out of place and mourning their lost lakes. popcorn in paper bags, rickety picnic tables, the intersection of pebbles and water. seagulls everywhere...begging for the contents of the pocket in my pink rubber raincoat. hopping and landing and bursting into flight, to and fro, like pieces of newspaper dancing on the invisible currents of the wind. i run, and they scatter; circling above me, they are laughing as i turn my head skyward to watch them disappear into the light.

the sun came streaming, burning across the sky and it splashed across the brick and rising concrete, steel, essence of the city...these buildings glowing red and gold and bronze in the evening light. right at that moment, only then, when the sun was right there, at that exact angle, i happened to look out the windows above the sky, across the expanse of the city. there they were, illuminated. the buildings ablaze and the windows soaking in light like mirrors, shimmering, shouting infinitely into the open air. the frames were surrounded by metal, burned copper and gorgeous in the sun light streaking, and they were magnetic. i couldn't look away. shadow and radiance, juxtaposed. i can hardly stand to see something so beautiful and not be able to express it in words. but i can't. those words, which i've just written...they are lies compared with the truth of that moment in time...when the buildings were on fire, exposed by windows made of molten epiphany and those screaming copper wires.

so apparently, my apple cider has fermented itself. i swear to jake gyllenhaal's beautiful arse, it tastes like sparkling apple cider. if only i knew how it had done so, i would repeat the process infinitely...tasty apple champagne for everyone!

scarf weather
ambitious bamboo plants encased in glass
stuffed animals who give good hugs
stamp-less packages returned to sender [and consequentially, katie s. assef]
mrs. dalloway, and the way 'the hours' contains so much of woolf's genius
hunting high and low (coldplay)
simonize and just another (pete yorn)
the concept of studying in the czech republic [and!] costa rica
completely harmless flirtation
glinting eyes
mood rings, global bracelets (cape cod, tolo, and new york city)
'john mccrea of cake, y'all'
anticipating upcoming roadtrips
landlocked blues (bright eyes) [special thanks to my durio for this one]

but did you notice my sigh? did you know that i meant it for you?

Monday, October 31, 2005

microcosmic melancholy

there is a siren moaning in time with the dusk.

where the lights become more clear
with night, and faded, with the sun's rising.
where stones are crushed slowly
into dormancy beneath tires,
earthquakes. the earth
quakes, cries, for its lost youth.
rumbling in dissatisfaction,
revolting the only way it knows how -
to create chaos between its
restless limbs and the
creeping, crawling, cringing folk
upon it.
we cling, like wildfire to blades
of dried grass, blowing in the breeze,
wishing for the strength
to jump; from stands of
dried grass imminent in black sand,
surrounded by roaring, by
the sound and
the fury
of an ocean. an ocean
which dares to beat sea glass -
ragged, rugged, desperately
illigitmitely broken -
into submission. into
pieces of fragmented,
encapsulated emotion, lasting for
too long, hidden, ignored.
ignored in the grains of black sand,
in flecks of black granite, ground...
smashed, filtered and faded into
flecks of black granite intermingled
with these gems of
viridian, cerulean, wonder -
laid quietly inside
the pavement, flickering
in recognition of the blinking
streetlights rising
into the air

these floorboards are rotting, held together by the rusting, raspy voiced nails which moan and creak under his footsteps. these floorboards contain her tears, melded into the fine lines of the wood, still grieving for their lost roots as mournfully as her tears, as if the salt tinged words that stream from her eyes illuminate - magnify - release - all the secrets of the trees. these floorboards bend and warp with the whistle of the sea breeze, allowing themselves to be distressed, disrupted, because their uneasiness signals the gravity of their sacrifice; these are floorboards filled with malice towards their oppressors and heartache inspired by their daily dying, but they revel in their misery, their unrest. these floorboards are witness to the rise and fall of years, on an endless life, as the foundation present for monstrous rages, for exhausting depression, for calm. these floorboards live vicariously through the unknowing steps of her slippered feet, past the frame of the door and back towards the crumbling edge of the cliff, gasping in revelation of its height, teetering precarious upon the thought of the fall. these floorboards split in desperation, no longer carrying his weight, no longer able to bear her torment. these floorboards recoil at the spillage of blood, curling and protesting as it seeps, staining into the grains, into the knots, the imperfections. these floorboards burn silently, resigned to their reversal, return to ash, as she lies finally pacified beneath them, and he lies broken in the yard, bathed in the light of their flames.

i beg you... to have patience with everything unresolved in your heart and try to love the questions themselves as if they were locked rooms or books written in a very foreign language.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

solitary state of mind

Something for your poetry, no? he said.

pretty sure i'm going mad. hugging trees, gathering leaves, running around like my head's been chopped off...and all i really want to do is hibernate and eat cold pizza. well maybe i'd like to read a little as well. ginsberg, eggers, caputo, maybe a bit of gowdy and heller. is there any real reason i can't just cease to function as a part of normal social society for awhile and be by myself? [not in the least bit depressed here, darlings. nor do i hate the world. i'm just in a solitary state of mind. which would be more fun if i were in new york. because then, i could also be in a new york state of mind and sing billy joel songs all night while holding aloft glasses filled with wine at pretentiously strange angles above my head and saying things like "ching ching" and "here's to you, dollface." it does not matter that i am alone in this apartment, except for the ferret named genevieve who lives in my dining room and the entirety of downtown new york, visible from my 9th floor loft. i will still sing and say strange things. alliteration!] emily clarified my life, in lieu of some very confusing boy situations. here [paraphrased] is her wisdom.
1) there are people who have a few close friends and there are people who have a lot of acquaintances.
2)relationships work like that too.
3) no one has to settle. no one is too picky. it's a heart we're speaking of, not a pair of shoes.
[emily didn't actually say the last sentence, but i'm sure she might have thought of it at some point in her life, because it sounds like something carrie bradshaw would say. and we all know carrie bradshaw is right about things of this nature.]

ready or not
here i come
you can't hide
gonna find you
and make you want me
[the fugees]

Thursday, October 20, 2005

i love it when you call me kiddo.

who is 'you'? anyone. everyone.

from [HOWL]:

I saw the best minds of my generation destroyed by madness, starving hysterical naked...
who chained themselves to subways for the endless ride from Battery to
holy Bronx on benzedrine until the noise of wheels and children brought
them down shuddering mouth-wracked and battered bleak of brain all
drained of brillance...
who reappeared on the West Coast investigating the FBI in beards and
shorts with big pacifist eyes sexy in their dark skin passing out incomprehensible leaflets...
who threw their watches off the roof to cast their ballot for Eternity outside
of Time, & alarm clocks fell on their heads every day for the next decade,
who cut their wrists three times successively unsuccessfully, gave up and
were forced to open antique stores where they thought they were
growing old and cried...
who jumped off the Brooklyn Bridge this actually happened and walked
away unknown and forgotten into the ghostly daze...
who sang out their windows in despair, fell out of the subway window,
jumped in the filthy Passaic, cried all over the street, danced on broken wineglasses barefoot...
who fell on their knees in hopeless cathedrals praying for each other's salvation and light and breasts,
until the soul illuminated its hair for a second,
who crashed through their minds in jail waiting for impossible criminals
with golden heads and the charm of reality in their hearts who sang
sweet blues to Alcatraz...
who dreamt and made incarnate gaps in Time & Space through images
juxtaposed, and trapped the archangel of the soul between 2 visual
images and joined the elemental verbs and set the noun and dash of
consciousness together jumping with sensation...
the madman bum and angel beat in Time, unknown, yet putting down here
what might be left to say in time come after death...
with the absolute heart of the poem of life butchered out of their own bodies
good to eat a thousand years.

-allen ginsberg.

buying used books at half price, eating ice cream in the wind, being remembered by a boy with adorably curly hair and intelligent eyes.
making scrambled eggs with cheese, 'then laugh, leaning back...', discovering that osyrus the beared mountain man is actually incredibly sweet.

i haven't been sleeping well. not that i always have in the past, but this time, it's more disruptive, more fragile. i know why. but the knowing makes it all the more difficult to remedy the sleeplessness, as it breaks my heart to be aware. what i wouldn't give to be ignorant again, just to this one thing! what i wouldn't do to have those moments back, in which everything was not tainted, in which my rose colored glasses [already missing half a lens and smudged] were still at least in one piece. i have that time trapped beneath clear packaging tape and under a dried autumn leaf, smashed between the pages of my journal. those precious few seconds float - eternally taunting me to take them in, take them up in my lungs and breathe them in so deep as to hope that their life will fill every inch of my being and give me back their meaning. but as soon as i release them, those precious few seconds... they will go drifting away like specks of infintesimally tiny tears, irreplaceable and unattainable and lost. what i wouldn't give to undo that day.

an elevator made of glass goes up into the sky for miles without end, but there is no top and there are only sides, so it really isn't an elevator at all. at least not an elevator that could conceivably hold people. there are people in the elevator though, somehow, and they're all yelling at the top of their lungs. they're yelling about how the earth is shrinking and that there isn't enough space in the whole universe for their love and about how there is no bottom on their elevator made of glass. they're yelling at the top of their lungs as they rocket into space, but you can hear a faint melody in the caucaphony their voices are creating. while they're yelling the timbre and the pitch and the verve of their voices seems upon first listen to be chaos, noise, pure and simple. but it is not just pure, one note one melody, it is five chords and a crescendo, three flats and two sharps stemming from the minor key their voices are creating while their elevator made of glass is rocketing into space.

1 day. 364 days. i still miss you, kiddo.

split like spun
glass, move themselves with spotlight swiftness
into the crevices -
in and out, illuminating

Sunday, October 16, 2005

Invisible Blackbirds, elongated.

updated for the 3rd time...this may be the final-first draft. if that makes any sense at all. which it probably doesn't. ooo workshopping makes me nervous!

i wrote this for my creative writing class - thanks to three images, an obsession with Vietnam, and the abundance of blackbirds on campus.


My body jolted awake, and I realized I had fallen into a trance. Somehow, I had made it down the hallway and to the doorway of my room. I paused, letting the darkness wash over me, letting it seep into my harried thoughts. It provided a surreal calm in juxtaposition with my labored breathing; I always felt as though a freight train had run through my body after falling out of a flashback or waking from a sleepwalk. As if the crossing of time waged some sort of war on my bones and everything else that surrounded them. My consciousness fights to come back to the now, but I have to struggle against the hands of my demons, clawed and snarling, and they leave bruises in my flesh and in my mind. There was still the faint sound of the TV in the back of my ears, even though it was no longer on, and I could feel the voices coming across the space in surges – rays of copper wire twisting and wrestling for their way in to my consciousness. I struggled to ignore them as they cut through the layers, but those metallic symphonies were stronger, faster than I, and they infiltrated deeper and deeper until I could no longer feel their roots to stop them.
Gunfire. Voices – angry, urgent, hollow. Rain whistling, screeching. Explosions. Agony.
In the reflection of the window, I could see my body, its angles and edges disfigured and ragged. My face was obscured, like the men in the story Mirello always told – no face, no reality, just the phantom of a man left behind by a pair of raven wings. Yet as the door closed, a spear of light shot through from the hall and found my eyes on the enigmatic surface of the glass, illuminating their presence as though a fire had been ignited inside the base of my skull. I knew it was only a reflection, a trick of the light, but the evocation of that image brought one memory racing to the forefront of my mind and I could not force myself to forget it. My eyes were there, staring back at me and demanding that I remember. My eyes were his eyes, and his eyes were haunting. His eyes were filled with broken soul.

When I was young and strong and filled with ambivalence towards the jungle I was trapped inside, a man I knew used to tell a story. Mirello smoked too much, and his voice was hazy and rough – the kind that so often accompanies wizened philosophy and a jaded sense of apathy. He had the mentality of a seventy-five year old man and the body of a twenty-two year old, neither of which were false, and both of which he carried well. Mirello used to tell a story, or maybe it was more a nightmare, about a field full of invisible blackbirds,
“Except they weren’t really blackbirds,” he would say – as he told the story often, “they were men. Men wearing black woolen suit jackets carrying large black umbrellas through blackened naked forests. They were the kinds of forests in which all the trees were dead, merely remnants of their living selves. The kind of trees that looked like the skeletons of men, waving their branches like arms in the wind, as if they wanted you to dance with them…”
“That’s pretty fucked up man,” O’Dell would say, just under his breath, as he always did when he heard the story. “Pretty fuckin’ macabre if you ask me.” He had these eyes, big brown eyes, that betrayed some inner sense of emotion that he tried to hide from everyone. Something that meant he was only acting tough because he was too scared to admit he was terrified. The kind of eyes that are the only thing anyone can ever seem to see. “His eyes!” they’d say, the breath catching in their throats, gasping. He was around the same age as Mirello, maybe a few years younger, but the difference between them was astounding. The sound of Mirello’s voice was like the ultimate ruse that everyone allowed themselves to believe; the look in O’Dell’s eyes told us the truth he never wanted to expose.
“But these men just kept marching,” Mirello continued, as if he hadn’t heard O’Dell at all. “They just kept moving, going through the skeletons of these trees. And the light – the light was shifting, squinting, blinking between the crooks of the branches. It was streaming through the branches just like it does here,” and he would gesture towards the sunlight shining in patches through the damp, humid air of the jungle “and it would catch and cling to the edges of the trees, and the outlines of the men. They would glow in gold and bronze and amber light, as if visible emanations of their souls were drifting slowly away from their bodies – from the trees. And the men, the men never had faces, just places overflowing with empty space.”
Mirello would always stop telling the story there because he knew that everyone was paying attention, no matter how many times he had told it before. O’Dell would always scoff and feign disinterest as the rest of us clamored for the conclusion, but we all knew he wanted to hear it just as much. Some of the guys thought that O’Dell hated Mirello because he was stronger than him, more popular, less fidgety. I always thought that it was something different than that.
“These men,” Mirello would continue, his voice growing deeper, “were all striding towards a staircase – right there in the middle of the woods – and they would just march up the stairs, one by one, closing their umbrellas and heading into the sky. There were stairs missing or crumbling, the boards decaying or gone. Cobwebs hung from the walls that surrounded the flight, but there was no ceiling. The ceiling had been gone long before the men had ever been there. They’d stop at the top of the staircase, because there was a door, but none of them ever opened it. They just stood in their black woolen suit jackets, with their heads tilted upwards, waiting for something to change.” The story always ended there, and even though we all felt like there should have been more, no one ever made a sound. I heard the story maybe fifteen, twenty times over the course of that year, and it changed a little every time…but the men never had faces. And they always started out being blackbirds…

Mirello and O’Dell really didn’t hate each other, much as everyone assumed. It was just one of those relationships that never smoothed out, never quite seemed to fit. Mirello was a big man, with stocky Italian features that accentuated the gravelly quality of his voice, and the thing about him was that when he talked, everybody listened. He didn’t ramble on, didn’t speak just to fill the vacant silence; his words had purpose. O’Dell seemed much smaller than Mirello, regardless of the fact that he was only a few inches shorter. He didn’t talk much, except when it was to himself, so when he started speaking up to Mirello, no one knew what to think.
“Why you always tell that story Mirello?”
Because people like to hear it, he said, leaning against his pack, arms crossed and eyes closed.
“But what’s so cool about this particular one? I mean… it’s not funny, and its not that exciting…”
Sometimes it’s just a story kid, he said. Eyes still closed, arms still crossed.
“These men, though,” O’Dell said, “why are they carrying umbrellas if it’s sunny? It doesn’t make any sense.”
Mirello gritted his teeth and opened his eyes. “Well none of it makes any sense. That’s the point. They’re goddamned blackbirds…invisible goddamned blackbirds for chrissakes. What does it matter the weather?” He was sitting up now, staring right at O’Dell, sneering. Then he stood and walked off into the brush, said he couldn’t explain everything to everyone. Some people didn’t know when to just listen, he said. O’Dell was silent again after that.
We all told stories in the dank and the dirt…it was the only way to stay sane. Even then madness would come creeping up, and half the time when I slept at night I dreamt of everything that had happened during the day. But stronger somehow. Like the pictures of the moments in my head had been hidden under a microscope and magnified, shoved into focus. As if they had been infused with clarity while they were fermenting in my memory. The colors were always more dramatic, like someone had taken cans of paint and splashed green and gold and ivory across the whole thing. Not that the colors in the jungle were drab; everything now seems washed out and faded in comparison. But in my dreams, they were almost surreal. Funny, how colors could be so vibrant in a place so overgrown with death.

There was a depression between the roots of three massive trees, holding water from the storm earlier in the morning, and I collapsed right there against the trunk of one. My body sank deep into my bones, too weary to support my own weight. O’Dell came over slowly, his mouth open vacantly and his eyes glazed in exhaustion. His face was ruddy from tan and the reddish brown dirt that seemed to collect in every crease and fold of skin. Underneath the color, though, I could see his pallor. Streaks from his tears laced through the dirt, creating trails that reinforced the story the bloodshot quality of his eyes told. At first he just rubbed his palms together, his lips still parted in consistent silence. Dipping his hands in the pool, he began to scrub and scour, beneath his nails and in the cracks of his knuckles. Faster and faster he pushed the water against his skin, until I noticed he was dragging tracks of flesh from the backs of his hands, drawing blood like cat scratches. Stop, I asked him, but he kept at it, his reflection staring up at him through the disjointed surface of the water. Stop O’Dell, I said, and leaned forward to grab one of his wrists.
“I can’t get it off,” he whispered quietly, still fighting to cleanse his hands.
“You’re scratching the shit out of your hands, kid. Stop.”
“I can’t get it off. I have to get it off.” I could see his eyes clearly in the turbulent veneer of the water, so blank and listless, staring without seeing any sort of reality.
“I can’t get it off,” he whispered again, though I knew he wasn’t speaking to me.

I can see O’Dell’s eyes like they were mine – and they were. They were my eyes, are my eyes, the same except for the crushing sorrow that was buried in their depths. I’ve never seen eyes that go for miles like that before; they literally contained distance so great that the intensity was overwhelming. I couldn’t stand to look for very long, for fear of getting lost. Yet they were soft, and tired, weary of the blood he’d seen every day for a year…the jungle was sucking the life out of his eyes one step at a time. They watched where his feet went, though they never saw anything but the light shining through the canopy. Twisting into fragments and bits, as if it could be changed into something physical, as if it could be caught and held in his hands. Held together, like he’d done for me, like he’d tried to do for Mirello. There was just too much energy there to keep within the confines of a body, and Mirello spilled out like the light, and he’d scattered in pieces across the whole length of a year in a moment. All of him, only just there and then suddenly gone; as that energy too great to be contained, Mirello burst open and into the tropics, inexplicably and all together too fragile. I watched O’Dell’s eyes crumble in that moment, when Mirello was ripped from his arms and carried away like the light when the clouds had converged. I watched him break down.

We had been marching just like we always marched through the jungle, our necks drenched in sweat, our limbs aching from exhaustion and frustration and anxiety. Most times the only way to identify anyone on the move was by voice – when we marched our fatigues camouflaged our bodies and our flak helmets covered our faces. Mirello was about fifty feet ahead of me, his body blending in with the trees so much that I lost sight of him without even trying. I was looking into the dying sunlight, watching the last of the morning filter through the foliage before the rain clouds solidified, when the raspy bark of his voice pierced through my daze.
“Hey, guys, hold up a minute. Hold up! I thought I saw something move over there. Heads down!”My body stiffened immediately, instantaneously awakening because of the surge of adrenaline feeding from my fear. Our feet moved more quietly and our backs were further hunched as we shuffled in the direction of his voice, following him towards whatever he had seen. Suddenly, there was an opening in the forest and the ruins of several wooden hutches appeared before us. They had been burned, gutted – cleared of any former inhabitants by the ravages of flame. There was nothing else around, no bloodied corpses or hastily made shallow graves, so we all assumed that the village had been deserted for a while. Even if there had been evidence to the contrary, we would have forced ourselves to deny the truth; no point in imagining anything more horrific than necessary. A rain drop landed on my arm and I looked upwards to find the sky hadn’t totally clouded over yet. The last desperate rays of the sun were caught like prisms in the scattered rain, and the light was refracted all across the clearing. The monsoon cometh, I thought to myself. We stood tensed, surveying every shadow for signs of disruption, suspicion, but after a few minutes we had all begun to lighten up. One man made a joke about wanting a refund from his travel agent, and another chimed in with something concerning his insurance policy. A few of us were peering into one of the huts when Mirello said
“Except they weren’t really blackbirds.” Most of the guys within earshot chuckled, and a lot of them begged jokingly to hear the full version of the story.
“Yea, asshole, finish the end. You can’t just leave them there in the staircase, staring like a bunch of idiots at the sky,” came O’Dell’s voice from behind me. We were all shocked. We had never heard him say anything so ballsy to anyone, let alone Mirello.
“Don’t call me an asshole, shitface. Who says they can’t end up staring like a bunch of idiots? I see people doing that all the time…” Just as O’Dell opened his mouth to respond, a sound like the crack of lightning rang through the clearing, and then everything was chaos.

He watched as Mirello died in his arms, life slipping through his fingers like grains of rice; too small, too delicate to hold. I watched as he watched Mirello disappear – his body mangled and quaking, begging for release. Like a single pulse of electricity, he jerked once and went still, shallow eyed and silent. It was if he began to decay right there, traces of his flesh vanishing as the rain slid across his skin, his muscles dissolving and sinking into the mud, leaving O’Dell holding only his bones. Leaving a man who had witnessed life stolen. It was only after Mirello’s eyes closed that I heard it. The sound came from deep within the cavity of O’Dell’s chest and rose up, and out, streaming into the air like toxin. It grew louder and more empty, more lonely until finally, as if he could no longer hold it in, the moan broke open and he sobbed. Those big brown eyes became like orbs of molten glass, shimmering and screaming in anguish. It was not wailing, for this pain was more powerful, deeper and more intimate than that. These were wracking sobs, soon morphed into roars so intense that I too began to cry, feeling that my heart might explode like the pieces of Mirello if I didn’t open my mouth and allow it to escape into the sky.
O’Dell cried as if it was the only way to relieve himself of the immense pain threatening to crush him, as if the harder he bawled, the more he would empty his heart of the fury and the sorrow that had suddenly ruptured in him. There was a sense in me then that the whole of the earth’s weight was bearing down upon me, and my knees gave without realization, and I found myself on the ground and howling. I couldn’t hear anything anymore – the screams of injured and dying men, the moaning of those who were clutching their friends’ bodies like rag dolls, the whistle BOOM! of grenades, and the sharp retort of the machine guns… none of it existed in my ears any longer. Wild eyed, I gazed around, bits of bone and jungle mingling together until I could no longer differentiate the limbs of men from the limbs of the trees. One by one everyone but Mirello and O’Dell disappeared from view, blurring into the background, and flickering out of my awareness, as if they had become invisible.
And so we were, O’Dell holding Mirello, both of them broken, and me kneeling in the mud and drowning in my tears. Watching as they became something wholly different than men, and waiting for something to change.

Sunday, October 09, 2005

an obsession with seaglass and caramel

so i guess it's cold now.

thursday study sessions that sweep my entire being into the understanding of a single class; talking and talking and talking, in circles and in arcs and around and over and through everything there is to say about hierarchy theory. but the walls of fair trade held us in and the cold night air allowed for some respite of sanity, leaving me adoring boys in plaid and waltzing [in my head] towards 137 gilman. with the knowledge that some people deserve each other and even when i'm enamored with the wrong person, that too shall pass. girl talk, late nights in the den, sleeping in a room all by myself. more studying at a table full of breakfast: mint chocolate and blue moon ice cream and (brueggers!) bagels. there is a sense of camaraderie as we all slowly let the inevitable wash over our faces, give in to the fervors of the midterm...the midterm from hell, bearing tooth and claw, and snarling as only ferocious beasts can snarl. yet! it was not as bad as it threatened, and as the bell rang, we all looked to one another as if to say 'we're done, we made it...time to be going.' the camaraderie may not last forever, or it may turn into one of those fabled anecdotes "remember when we first...". either way, it was good. my guess would be that it is a fleeting bond, one forged over the fury and the panic and the fascination. can't say that i would mind if it continued though, if that were the case...

naps. sheer mental exhaustion, leading to the complete and total shut down of my working mind. i cease to function. wake up, confused [is this new? no, of course not. the frazzled, disorientated state of newly waking is one constant in my life. i must learn to use it to my advantage, as in appearing cute and in need of care. so far, it just garners funny looks and laughter. oh well.] hockey! illegal chinese food on buses, amazing seats, amusing cheers and adorable peewee games...thanks, kiddo. onwards to the theatre (meant to be said in a snooty british accent, although it is wildly inappropriate). and to GREENBUSH. yum. sleep, yet again.

after the dissipation of my brain on friday...this weekend was highly unproductive, save for the creation, celebration, and consumption of a most sublime salad. this is quite all right with me. to the faahmer's maahket [i am in boston, apparently. first england, now the east coast. i am a world travelling floozy! except, i'm not a floozy. and i wasn't actually travelling. not that it matters.] to buy cinnamon rolls and veggie bread and victuals of all kinds (mainly green onions and peppers and beans, as well as raspberries and carrots.) sex and the city, and billy joel, and dancing with vegetables, oh my! not kidding. washing dishes, doing the laundry, wearing sweatpants with longsleeved shirts, cleaning house while watching war movies...these are my favorite kinds of saturdays. not kidding again. FRIDAs. feeling antisocial. clippings from magazines. turquoise piles of seaglass ... rosy brown seaweed frozen in crystal ... cherry wood covered in black sand ... lilies in white and pink and green ... books filled with recipes calling for oils and spices and tuscan things.

the fragile quality of wilted flowers, ten days old, the color fermenting in their petals like the etching of ink in parchment. chats with aki and emily...always making me feel more myself, more assured that i AM doing something right, that i don't have to worry about being lost in the shuffle or thrown aside. hugs. caramel macchiatos. making mixes and creating soundtracks for my days...days are always better with soundtracks. wouldn't it be amazing to have a constant stream of music for every profound and essential (or even the most demure and meaningless) moments in your life? that's what my ipod is for. i wonder what my soundtrack will be in five years? writing in fragments, single word thoughts, phrases. so opposite of stream of consciousness...and yet these are my two favorite forms for words. i am a walking paradox.

brooklyn [mos def]
getaway car [audioslave]
you got the style [athlete]
i woke up in a car [something corporate]
booty [erykah badu]
for the widows... [sufjan stevens]
oh what a night [billy joel]
how sweet it is [madhatters]
celebrate [wyclef jean]
love song for no one [john mayer]
big brown eyes [old 97s]

If I should never find you in this life, let me feel the lack. One glance from your eyes, and my life will be yours.

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

like black cherries

'cuz i'll reverse the earth and turn your flesh back to dust.

i've been reading love letters again, and hearing love stories, and seeing romance around every corner. which only leads me to think...

when's it my turn?!

i deserve this too! i swear it. i am a girl with flowers in bottles and boxes made of brightly colored words. i have art on the brain, literature streaming from my ears, the world exploding inside my dreams and beyond all that, i hear i'm a pretty good kisser. i'm a little bit crazy, a little bit hard to define, and i like it that way...but why doesn't anyone else? i've gotten a few to notice, don't get me wrong - but it always seems that the timing is off, or the distance is too much, or maybe it's that i'm just too goddamn picky. is that it? maybe it's all my fault...i'm driving myself into a lifetime of loneliness because i don't know how to relate to someone in that intimate of a way without scaring myself. maybe i should just throw my heart into the next pair of arms that beg me to rest inside them. but i don't want to settle! i'd feel bad, and it wouldn't be real. verdad. TRUTH. maybe i'm incapable of love. i swear that i'm a hopeless romantic, but maybe when it comes down to it, i'm just terrified of anything real actually happening to me.

being in the library for 6 hours straight is bad for your sanity. example? i go crazy, eat bagels and juice, run around in the hallway and bounce about like a squirrel. while scaring half the inhabitants of my hall into thinking i'm a lunatic. which is entirely possible.

i dare you to love me...i know you want to.

and he tasted like black cherries.

Wednesday, September 28, 2005

if you come looking...

Peeka: Lucky Charms?
Igby: What?
Peeka: Fucking - Lucky - Charms!
Igby: I don't know.

i get this reeediculous urge to watch Igby Goes Down approximately every two months. i have no idea why. absolutely no idea. i've seen the movie about 14 times, but i never get sick of it. maybe its because igby reminds me so much of holden caulfield, or because kieran culkin is adorable. possibly also because of the soundtrack [which i love. stones:coldplay, the weight:travis. the two that come to mind. ] regardless, i can promise you i'll be tempted to watch it at least three times in the next week. whether or not i actually do so, all depends on the busyness of my schedule. which looks like its going to eat me for breakfast three times before thursday at the moment, so yea. we'll see how that goes.

wrists, ankles, neck. you want me? that's where i'll be. get my attention. you're half way there if you come looking...

. stargazer lilies .
. raspberry cocopuffs .
. serpentine: ani difranco .
. people who wear BRIGHT GREEN .
. thirty-two minute naps on the floor, no pillow, on my stomache .
. watching love actually instead of doing my homework .
. sophisticated grown up food, old worn in stains, 137 gilman .
. tanzanite bobbypins .
. frappuchinos .
. full house at lunch, specifically uncle jesse .

But I would not sleep
in this bed of lies
So toss me out
and turn in
And there'll be no rest
for these tired eyes

Wednesday, September 21, 2005


wracked by aches...i can feel each and every one of my bones when i move.
prickles - shivers, drive the hairs along the back of my neck into oblivion.
the hard back of the chair is pressing my ribcage into my lungs... wracked by aches.

lying on the ground, attempting to get comfortable - knees up, arms bent, hands on my stomache. legs unshaven, sleep too vital. ants crawling, making their little black way into my little black pants. ants in my pants! and a smallish green and orange, which glows like an oil spill.

the chewer by the elm tree...packing and glinting in anticipation. the blue tin lying in the grass, i can almost smell it from here. disgusting.

wait...that's not tobacco... it's tuna. he's not a chewer, he's a hippie making a tunafish sandwich on the hill. funny how your impressions can change so quickly.

black ink stained into the skin like its become your very blood...staring out at the world from the inside of your wrist, quietly waiting to declare its presence - when shirt sleeves are lifted, when the hand is extended to shake, when arms are flung wide in expectation of a hug. it'll begin to fade, never fear. eventually the water will wear away, taking bits of the black when you least imagine. and it's over time, really... the grand canyon wasn't made in a day. but what am i saying...tattoos have nothing to do with rocks.

our relationship consisted of opening doors - that's it. that's it...opening doors. the span of human interaction is fascinating. conversations and love affairs, friendship and kindness on the bus, right down to the smallest of gestures. made with the glance of an eye or the upward twitch of the lips... how complex we primates of the metropolis really are.

i have irrational fears about my health. i'm liable to claim i'm coming down with a bone disease when my shins whince, and any sniffle or tickle in my throat quickly morphs into a horrendous case of yellow fever. call me a hypochondriac, but sometimes i think i might be right, that for some reason my immune system has obtained super-molecular powers, and i have managed to fend off any number of dreadful diseases. i can feel my t-cells at work, armed to the teeth and snarling in the general direction of any virus they come across while traversing my bloodstream. it fucking hurts! when they battle, i mean. sort of gives me an empathetic view of conflict - i'm inside the body of a civil war victim.

'cause when I look down,
I miss all the good stuff,
and when I look up,
I just trip over things.
- ani.

Saturday, September 17, 2005

invisible blackbirds

"In his time, the old man had often seen paradise: jagged panes, lightning angles, the unformulated glory of smashed leaded glass. In Paris in 1924 he had watched a workman accidentally drop from a second-story scaffolding a windowpane, which had broken on the stones of the Quai Voltaire. The shattered glass on the sidewalk contained the geometrical shapes of paradise: transparent isosceles edges, razors: glass made beautiful by fracture and accidents of force. He had wanted his poems to be as beautiful as that broken glass. He wanted them to cut into the skin and evoke the bloodflow."
- Charles Baxter, excerpt from The Old Fascist in Retirement.

may possibly be the most beautifully depressing short story i've ever read. gabriel garcia marquez does often evoke such emotion in me that i am unable to explain myself in words...but baxter's story about the struggle of old Ezra Pound and his circling descent into dementia even managed to describe the sensation of being without words; there is a passage in the story which depicts the actual inability to speak...the writer's worst torture.

to the beautiful man who looks similar to omar epps: do not be so melancholy. your eyes carry with them a certain levity that cannot be escaped, and i felt in me a desire to erase every hurt in your body. it passed eventually, after you had been gone for awhile. its funny how someone i've only even seen once can have such a great impact on my whole day - mentioned in my online outpouring of thought, even. there was the faintest hint of cigarette smoke hanging in the air along observatory dr. last afternoon. it stirred memories that did not exist; nose in the air, eyes closed, breathe in and in and the smoke that contained so many years of wishing for something better. ironic, because i've never wanted to smoke. at least not tangibly...but somehow it seems like the cigarette-smoking boys always have more intriguing words spilling from their mouths. perhaps it's just the husky-voiced vibrato that lingers behind in my ears after they've explained why the vacant field had more soul when it was covered with invisible blackbirds. and instead of being blackbirds, they were men. men in black woolen suit jackets, carrying black umbrellas through blackened naked forests. the light was shifting, squinting and blinking between the crooks of the branches, leaving a lasting impression of orange and yellow on the skeleton of the trees nearest the fading sun. the men never had faces. they were all striding towards a staircase, which was crumbling and missing three steps. cobwebs. a door at the one ever opened the door. they all just stood in a line, staring towards the ceiling, which had been gone since 1973. this is the story smoky-voiced boys tell me from time to time. the details change a bit every now and again... but the men never have faces. and they always start off being blackbirds.

- having random spanish conversations with a grizzled old cuban man on a bicycle in the middle of state street
-dark chocolate covered raspberries
- ani difranco's 'looking for the holes'
-literature raptures and philosophical quandries on porches in the evening ['you buy my book and i'll buy yours!']
-dance parties and singalongs
-death cab for cutie's new cd, specifically 'i will follow you into the dark'
-rum and coke(s)
-being excited for the following upcoming events...
a) All About My Mother (Todo sobre mi madre), Rize, and Me and You and Everyone We Know coming to the Play Circle Theatre
b) ben folds on october 26th
c) the visit of kristen marie barnes to madison, WI.
- green apple gum

this was a work in progress. of approximately three days. forgive us, we're rather flaky. [and also apparently schizophrenic. ]

If heaven and hell decide That they both are satisfied Illuminate the no's on their vacancy signs If there's no one beside you When your soul embarks Then I'll follow you into the dark

Friday, September 09, 2005

to newport beach we go, post haste.

can i just say amazing?

yes. i can. The OC returneth, and oh how wonderfully the trumpets blazed upon its entrance. introduction of glorious new music that will be spinning about in my head for days? check. reference to the [other] show which makes my life complete? check. (justincases you hadn't realized to what i am referring, this means sex. or, to those even more ignorant, sex and the city. carrie bradshaw is my hero. my heart rests in New York.) cohen and his adorkable self making witty retorts at every turn, including self deprecating idioms and a mention of chrismukkah? check! and the high point... of the whole episode... at which moment i fell completely head over heels in love with the show all over again...

"cohen... i can't believe you did that cohen"

ryan atwood makes a joke! and he's grinning! ryan atwood is grinning! and making jokes! oh goodness. the emotions! the intrigue! the rollarcoaster of drama and chaos and melodic human interaction! julie cooper is still the most psychotic evil beyatch on television; and it appears she has been joined by her evil blonde stepsister/pseudo twin, come to ruin the lives of sandy and kirsten cohen. trey and his heart-wrenching guilt...cue hide and seek:

mmm whatcha say
mm that you only meant well
well, of course you did

lordy! those few moments are only the most astounding in a veritable hour of healing for my sanity. now that The OC is back, happy thursdays have returned. and if nothing else, i have this to look forward to.

you think i'm crazy. i know you do. 'anyone who refers to a television show in such great detail, as though she actually knew the characters - emphasis on characters - is obviously crazy.' and you've caught me doing it not once, but twice. for two different shows, one of which is no longer even on the air. well, if this is the case, i raise my hands in defeat. they are stained with the rouge and burgandy of the SoCal sunset [thereby making me...redhanded. you've caught me redhanded. eh? eh?] i would rather be named a lunatic than give up my reeediculous adoration for The OC. that is all.

"well you gotta admit Coop, no matter what happens - Ryan facing off with Trey to avenge your honor? It's pretty freaking hot. In like, a mythic biblical samurai western kind of way." - summer, on the tragic events of season 2.

Wednesday, September 07, 2005

seeing passed the decrepit palaces

...that the sky has been so neatly reflected in
the waters of the lake
means nothing.
perhaps man finds beauty in this merely
because it allows him to feel
to the heavens.
But. this is a ruse, an illusion...
an Allusion to the vast expanse
of the universe in the microcosm
created by pooling water. here,
between the bends of the trees
[covered in cobwebs, filled
with moving,
brimming with life unseen]
the lake appears to go on for miles.
not unlike the ocean.
if one neglects to admit the horizon,
refusing to acknowledge
that there are boundaries, definitions,
actual spatial limitations --
it could be believed that this bend
in the trees is the corner of
But! this is a ruse, an illusion...
no man has stood at the edge and shouted,
fearing no depths, finding no end to his vision.
at least, not yet.

tentatively, [the ruse of reflecting or the ephemeral quality of the cosmos. ]

i wrote! my brain feels better now. as does my fine point black sharpie marker. (things always look better when i handwrite them in fine point black sharpie on plain white paper. perhaps if i ever publish anything...they will allow me to publish in handwritten black sharpie. although my writing can become slightly difficult to read (for all except emily, who always manages to decipher it, somehow.) i think this is a sign that i'm settling down again. always have a hard time writing anything that isn't shit when i'm surrounded by chaos, which is frustrating really, as those are usually the times in which i need it most. but the words just won't come, and so i wait. it's really more physical dysfunction that smites writer's block on my hand and on my head, rather than chaos in the more personal world of everyday life. moving. disruptive things like that. good thing i wasn't born an army brat, or i'd be screwed. all sorts of thoughts and no way to make them come head'd come near to bursting! or maybe i could just talk to kristen all the time, as she usually gives me some peace of sanity to carry around as brickwall of sorts so as to fend off ugly monsters rearing their wretchedness [i know i used the wrong form of that word...i meant it as such. leave me alone.]

"she is a friend of my mind. she gather me, man. the pieces i am, she gather them and give them back to me in all the right order. it's good, you know, when you got a... friend of your mind." - toni morrison, beloved

Friday, September 02, 2005

maybe this just means we're used... no longer new. a boulder where he'd been invisible,
or just longevity reflecting on itself
between the sky clouding over and the lightly ruffled
this was the morning after your dream of dying, of being held
and told it didn't matter.

- eamon grennan.

green twining like a mass of snarled poofy hair, attention drifts to aluminum accented by the sprinkling of red and orange lights. through the crack in the glass, beyond the height, lies one...tall. along the ledge inside... here is green tea and gray tea, sicilian bergamot earl pure leaf tea. herbal and black tea, vanilla and chai tea, rooibos red african blend tea. manhattan and the sarangheti meet in the middle, telling tales of taxi cabs and waterholes, although the parallels between the two are almost invisible upon first glance. scribbles. black ink dripping in to pages...curling like barbed wire and wrought iron gates.

i'm all sorts of off balance. although usually when this happens i get this sort of uneasy i think i might vom but maybe i'll just be uncomfortable for two and a half hours feeling...the type that causes me to become painfully obviously anxious at social functions and in the midst of ice breakers. but i'm not getting that feeling right now! its sort of weirding me out. i'm still in the awkward situations. still don't like meeting new people [not the actual knowing them...the meeting them part.] and i definitely haven't become more talkative than i used to be. but i'm so much more comfortable in my uncomfortability, it isn't freaking me out nearly as much as it used to. i think i'm off balance because of a) the transition to sophomore year [which is inherently uneven... do i or don't i want to major in this? will i or won't i finally find a place on campus? is this or isn't this what i want to do with the rest of my life?!] and b) the realizations that i've made about myself over the past three months. i think i changed more over the summer than i did over the course of my first year of college, although without those nine months, none of the changes would have taken place, as they did lead to most of the influence that caused them. but being back in the roch, with the people that i am most familiar, caused me to recognize the truest parts of my personality and the aspects of others that i respect most. so now that i'm back in madison [tangent: isn't it strange how you can say 'i'm back...' in reference to two different places and mean basically the same thing? how can one have two homes and not attain an identity crisis? the application of andrew largeman's wisdom in garden state is becoming even more glaringly obvious...] i feel like i can really get what i want out of the illusive college experience, if only because i sort of know what i'm looking for. at least on some level, the definitions of my dreams are clearer. the pixels have become smaller, the view has become wider, and when i look out on library mall, i don't see a photograph in a pamphlet, i see minutes and hours and days of my life. which is pretty mind-blowing, when you really think about it. to be able to see whole bits of your life in a photograph. a moment, captured in a flash of light on reddish-bronze film. but that moment can mean whole years to your existence, depending on the epiphanies that you can have inside them.

three things i'd like to say blatantly:
my hair looks sexy when i've got it pushed back with bobby pins and a headband, tied in little pigtails at the base of my neck. especially when the part is a little crooked and chunks are coming out every which way. also... i look hot with an eyebrow(n) ring, and no one can deny that. [ a) i'm not conceited, i promise. i just love my little silver facial piercing. its what i've been looking for to complete my face for my whole life. and b) i called it an eyebrow(n) because my father likes to remind me that i referred to my eyebrows as such when i was small...amusing him, and therefore, amusing me in my wisened old age. and by old age, i mean approximately two decades.]
i want my book back, dammit. this means a heartbreaking work of staggering genius. if anyone knows me at all, they know that i am obsessed with that book. and it's been missing from my possession for over three months now. causing me to have heart palpitations and small seizures. dave eggers is my god! i need his satiric wit and charming, effortless observations back in my life. and also all musings about toph are hysterical, thereby causing me to laugh, thereby causing me to live longer. (it's been proven that if you laugh more often, you add years to your life.) i'm dying sooner everyday that the book is missing from my being!
i have a green thumb. my bamboo plant is huge, the oregano plant i bought for a dollar fifteen at shopko has turned into a small mess of vines on my window sill, and don't even get me started about the spiderplant i raised in a milk carton from the tender age of five til approximately fifteen. professor sprout would be begging me to be her assistant if i were to be taking herbology. [is it bad that i just referred to harry potter as though it were a real place? is it worse that i doubted its existence?!]

I don't know what's happening to me. I seemed to be unraveling.

Sunday, August 28, 2005

somehow we've become like the library of congress.

"This guy named Fritz something was eating a lot of Twinkies. Fritz's girlfriend was talking to him about women's rights, and he kept saying, 'I know, baby.'"

and there was just something about the way we fit; similar to the way all books end up looking just fine in the same size bookshelf, even though they're all totally different...especially when it comes down to the words. i guess the whole thing can be attributed to a metaphor about library books, really. we are the books. and so we attain certain qualities that define them. and we read each other just as we would 'catcher in the rye' or 'watership down.' checked out for the year, we've been hiding under stacks of newspapers, sitting on desks, stuffed between the cushions of couches. there are dog earred corners, rings left on our covers by coffee mugs, and maybe even a few missing pages. the pink ink of a highlighter has left indelibile stains in the paper, running through to the other side accidentally and revealing strange new coincidences about the use of the letters "L" and "E". specifically together. we've got these barcodes stuck to the backs of our [necks], which are supposed to identify us in an instance, but really...they're so old now that it seems like half the numbers don't make sense anymore and the lines really are just lines.

we are the books, and others are our books. sometimes to re-read the old stories just doesn't feel right, as if your eyes won't stay focused on the words long enough to comprehend the subject and end up skipping around to find audience with flashes of light or a mosquito bite itch. a search and rescue party will be attempted [carrying the book back and forth in the front seat of your car, explaining to yourself that you will read it tomorrow.] eventually these books will be re-read, or discovered by another, but for now, they'll sit on shelves and gather that most amazing smell of must and old paper. the worst case is often the most amicable on the surface, which may cause even greater suffering upon the realization of the unfortunate state in which the book lies. this is when one returns to a comfortable favorite, or a story that floats fondly in the reminiscence of your childhood. that kind of book that you always remembered adoring when you were younger, but never found the time to pick up again. or the one you read over and over, just because it was there and because nothing better had ever taken your heart as thoroughly as that had one particular summer. you return to its pages out of habit, and comfort...not that either is a negative, just that the inspiration disappeared steadily from the experience until reading the words had become like walking; entirely acceptable and enjoyable, but not quite the same as skipping. when glancing over these books in the 'recently returned' bin, your eyes will light up and, immediately, the urge to lounge around in a bathrobe with a banana smoothie overcomes all other responsibility. you've been parted so long with your darling novel, the change is not immediately noticeable. but the longer you read, the more distasteful it becomes. this is not what you remember! what happened to the intrigue, and the quirky humor, and the charming wit? when did it become so awkward and contradictory to your opinions, and dare you think it...meaningless? you'll try to enjoy it like you once did, but somehow, it won't quite ever be the same.

before you dismiss the library as a place of misfortune, sit down on a couch and pick up one of those old favorites that used to make your brain simmer with anticipation for every word. at least three of them have just been left in the box, go quick before they're taken! as you flip through the first few pages, scanning for familiar sentences and more slowly recalling character flaws, you'll find that some of those books you loved so much before you were checked out last year still hold as much of your love as they did before. before you were covered in coffee stains and scribbled on with black ink...before your pages were bent and warped by the rain...before your spine was cracked twice too many and the lines of age began to show in your face...these were the ones who were stacked by you on the shelf. but as it turns out...returning you to the same shelf isn't such a bad idea, and re-reading and being re-read isn't such a bad idea either. somehow, the comfort clung to the pages along with the travelling wear of the new places you've all been. but the excitement hasn't disappeared, and those lines you found so amusing and endearing and intelligent before are still just as good!

love to my loves. hide and seek, josianas, polaroids, ice cream, paint, sleep deprivation, sunburn, thespians, the opposite sex. swing sets, river beds, cocktails, roadtrips, head phones, equilateral triangles, windows, cake! it's time for bed, so long for now.
ps. i still adore you.

i found this outside an elementary school. i like to think it's a preliminary outline of some kid's ambitious, world-altering plot. -found.