try again in the morning

a flight delay returns me back home. tired and irritated. lucky for the comforts of an unexpected conversation to soothe. placate. assure. sometimes words feel like soft plush blankets. and just when we need them. still full of a desire to get out. move. i take a walk in the dark. stray between the glare of the street lamps and the glossy bluish night. tonight the route reminds of swimming in cold water with my eyes closed. cross the ravine that dips down into a shallow. jump across the divide. climb the opposing hill that i know in daylight is now covered in seaweed colored grasses. at the top, i sit and stare into the sky. it’s where i’m supposed to be right now. lie with my palms against the cool grass. the blood rushing to my head tilted slightly downhill. start for home only after it’s gotten too cold. watch a movie. sit on my porch and drink a late night cup of coffee. empty-headed, i fall into a hot bath. soak out the aches that have accumulated across my shoulder blades – the back of the neck. afterward, i turn out all the lights, then remember i’ve meant to listen to a piece of music. lie on the couch. it’s something i don’t at first recognize. the notes divide and then reassemble my day until i’ve forgotten that there are words or any need for them at all.

powering off

I can hear the garbage collectors emptying the dumpster in the parking lot outside my building. It reminds me that I’ve yet to clean out my refrigerator. There are still a few stray dishes in the sink. Only a few more things to do before I’m gone.

Posts might be sporadic for the next few weeks, if at all.
But there’s enough in the archives to keep you entertained.
Be safe and well. And take advantage of life as much as you can.
That’s what I’m going to try to start doing.

Miss you –


random shuffle

odd that after hearing a song by Vic Chesnutt, the next random play was
Hefner's version of The New Bad Things' "Goethe's Letter to Vic Chesnutt"

This morning while listening to jane’s addiction far too loudly, I realized that for one little person, I sure do produce a lot of useless words.

stumbling into words





great post here

what would your soundtrack look like?

spatial relationships

the problem for me when packing for long trips is that i keep taking out important items like clothes to make more room for more important items like

Hey. Nobody’s commented on the changes here.
Silence is an answer.
So, you all hate it and it looks messy.


before anything else, i decide to take a run. but it’s colder outside than i imagined. already aching, i set out. something’s wrong with my body. doesn’t want to go. have to stop after only a few blocks and walk -- feeling miserable and exhausted. go a few miles slowly. mad at myself for being weak and stupid, i turn around and run the rest of the way home. but really, I know, that making myself run home was the weak and stupid part.

cough drops

yesterday, i was trying to pretend that i'm not sick
maybe it's time to stop pretending

on being able to see out of both eyes

I stop by the theater department on the way home looking for Z. He disappeared from classes a few weeks ago, and I can’t seem to stop worrying about him. I find him running lines with a cute girl wearing short unnaturally violent hair and thick heavy glasses. Upon first recognition he appears shocked – quickly drops the papers and hugs me with a rapid and desperate motion. We’re not really friends. The gesture catches me off guard. Later I realize that I didn’t hug him back. We talk in a dimly lit hallway. The tiles along the walls and floor make it feel like we’re standing in an empty swimming pool. It strikes me that he looks too thin – too tired. I take him to coffee. Buy him something to eat. I listen for a long time. Hope this is what he needs – a friendly face and the idea that somebody gives a damn whether he lives or dies. That anybody noticed his disappearance. But I don’t really know what to do. He hugs me again before I go and says I’m really glad you came by.

Take care of yourself, I say out of the tops of my eyes.
He promises to try.

the morning

There’s a message blinking after I come down from the shower. Press play with anxious deliberation and lean. Mister X’s voice dances like a scratch I can’t quite reach along my back. Furious at the idea that he’s tried to contact me again, I hit delete without giving him time to finish. Maybe out of anger, I’ve come down with too much force and the unit with its stupid blinking light – balanced on the edge of the phonebook – crashes down onto the floor in a flurry of wires and exclamations. I stare at the mess I’ve made and decide to leave it until later.

other things

my foot's asleep
the heavy winter shirt i've salvaged from the back of my closet smells like a campfire
i've just seen jesus christ of the sacred heart wearing a baseball cap

2:12 am

crawl into bed and the phone rings almost instantaneously. panic first. scan my memory for the pattern of the keypad. click the triangle that in the daylight hours is blue. still fully awake. every other noise obliterated by the sound of my heart. beating. and i can’t make out the voice on the other end. finally realize it’s tone. we’ve not spoken in years. i’ve moved and changed my numbers at least five times since then. and he had been living out of his car. listen to him talk as i drag to the office. curl up in the desk chair and use the toes on my right foot to press against the edge. rock back and forth. we don’t acknowledge that it’s the middle of the night or that we’ve not heard from one another in ages. mostly i don’t need to say a thing. he tells me the latest stories, and i long to write them down. to see the amazing pictures i know he’s taken. his fantastic ability to capture the world from the other end of a lens. he’s just flown in from prague. but mostly he wants to talk about vietnam, cambodia, laos. filled my head with dreams. fly to california he said when i could see the sun warming up my part of the world, it’d be amazing to see you.

i’m having that nightmare again
the one about the cars – the accident
until i wake
filled with the results of the late night

the only salvation

i walk in the sun
stray without direction
the purposelessness feels sneaky
like a cold draft
let my mind wander
farther than my feet can carry
imagine myself getting run down by a passing car

i stop
and call long distance
from a pay phone down the street from my house
even though i could have easily dialed right from my living room
against the traffic
i hear his answering machine
when it’s my turn
i can’t remember what to say

half-heartedly watch a movie after the sun goes down but turn it off part way realizing i’ll either cry soon or lose interest and i don’t have the spirit for either instead i try to write and nothing comes out nothing worthwhile only something about that stupid dream i’ve been having since i was old enough to remember i write about how this morning i wondered if my neighbors were dead in their apartment because i could hear their alarm clock going off for over an hour the rational response that they may have just been out didn’t occur to me until later but i selected it all with the mouse and hit the delete key created a new document without a name and typed

bagpipes are sexy

read this poem

and thought of a handful of people i'd like to forward the url and say -- i think you might get this too.
it's here, now, instead.
if only because i'm always sending a scant few of you too too many words.

Self-Portrait at 28, David Berman

feeling ashy?
[mostly this product information is for alt/itchy-stv]

i’ve recently purchased gold bond medicated lotion, because the harsh winter weather often leaves me feeling like my skin’s been encased in a fine-spun and tightly wound pattern of spider’s web. but, now, my skin is more fluid – like the smooth unconstrained movement of milk.

get you some.

i’ve tried to write something about the day
then nothing feels adequate. this post came to mind. and this. maybe even this. and that will have to do.

right now i’m just thankful for the power of good friendships and hot chocolate.


i've just had the sense to delete an email message in the middle of composing.

too early for this

miserably drunk, i wring out the remains of myself –of the day-- in a hot bath. vanilla almond tea balanced on the ledge. mixed with the plunking tones barely decipherable from the music i’ve set to play. the lavender suds. reluctantly, i fumble with lazy motions and slippery hands. answer the phone.

why do you always catch me at these moments?
when i’m drunk or in the bath
which are you now?
because you’re always drunk and/or taking a bath
fair enough

tell me a story
he sighs, as i already begin to fade. the results of soaking myself for too long in alcohol -- in hot water. i can hear my voice echoing against the three sided plexiglas. hollow and liquid. but i’m not really listening. wonder, instead, if it’s possible to die of electrocution from talking on the phone partially immersed. i’ve been retelling medea. changing elements and names as i please. he doesn’t recognize the plot and so i pause – let the moment drift – i’m not sure he’s still on the other end – i don’t even care. he apologizes for something i don’t in this moment think is important and so i provide no response. we’re having two different conversations. neither dependant upon the other to be sustained. and i’m not in the mood to provide entertainment. the snap of the realization stings. i whisper the word: unloosed. then admit i’d rather be left alone.

word of the night



yesterday a friend asked

Do you play darts?
No. I shouldn’t play darts. Although, I have.

When my older brother and all of his friends would get drunk in our basement, sometimes they’d play. We’d salvaged our father’s old gold and black board from the garage where it’d been hanging since we were kids. And its smell of general grease, neglect, and gasoline always made me think of being with my dad. The boys hung the board on the dry-wall in the direct pathway to the restroom. It was just about the only surface not made of concrete. Somehow, no one ever got injured by a stray dart. By the time we both moved out, the wall was almost completely destroyed. Sometimes, the boys used to ask me to play. I was never very good at hitting the target.

I developed a theory quite early on in life that I was born with a defect: I am completely devoid of eye-hand coordination. Although I’ve taught myself to be better over the years, there’s no escaping the horror stories of gym class. Or the years I played on the boys’ baseball team, because there wasn’t an equivalent for girls. Desperate attempts to be good. I still panic, a little bit, when I think about performing such tasks in front of other people. Anything involving a ball. A goal. The hardest class for me to pass at university was tennis.

earlier i found myself thinking

I miss jak
Stood outside the building and stared at the rusted cylindrical chunk of metal in the courtyard. Its opening tilted at some purposeful angle toward the sky. Patina and birds wings. Moments of below-zero silence.
because he knew how to tell truths that tasted like brown sugar.

the impurity of thoughts

today, between spaces of looking for you, i dreamed about painting.

currently having one of those moments. . .
where I wish I could take back just about everything I’ve ever said to anybody.

mistakes made within the last 24 hours:

Dude, why ya always gotta fuck everything up?
I know. I’m acting a fool.
I told you, dude. Stop fucking around. Get your head right.
You’re telling me to get my shit together? That’s rich.
Fuck off, man. You called me.
Straight. Fair enough.
Just chill. Take some time. Move with deliberation.
So, what are you going to do?
Nothing. I guess.
Aren’t you scared that’s going to fuck things up, too?
I dunno man. I’ve never done any of this before.
Yeah. Fucking hell. Feels like – me too.

the relevance of word choice on impressionable minds

Scene: Thursday. In the midst of casually teaching one of my classes.

Student A: Ya know, for a long time this semester, I assumed, you know . . . you know . . .
[this stammering continues for some time]
Student B: [to student A] Come on. Say it.
[I’m totally oblivious to what’s coming.]
Student A: Yeah, I thought for sure you were a lesbian.
Other Students: Me too.

discharge and the remains

I loved you, he hushes, because you told me a story about fire. Because you innately understand what most people don’t about nature and violence. violence in nature. the nature of violence. He mumbles something. Muffled by his hand. A sheet. Nothing outright. Inaudible strains like plucking the metal chords from inside the piano. What is it that I know? He jumps again. Skips like a dusty record, It’s the one about fire. I remember the moment. Have forgotten the words. Not for insignificance, but because my mind never knows what to hold on to. All I ever really do is tell useless stories.

Apologies always produce these groping explanations for loving me. And I wait for it to fall. Crash and break. I’ve left the key hidden. You know where it is. In a magnetized box underneath the grill. I’m sorry. I’m sure he means it. I didn’t plan on being gone. I understand. Already missing those moments we won’t get to spend together. As he rambles about the ways she makes him feel, I make a promise not to do this again.

notes to remind me
There are consequences for regrettable actions. Stop it. Stop it and start being more productive. Stop it and start paying more attention to other people’s feelings.

accidental happenings

while looking for d’angelo’s video untitled (how does it feel)
i accidentally discovered air’s video how does it feel
weird. interesting. spooky.


yes. i mean you.

instead of dreaming

I watch them sleeping from a chair. Inches away. Lose myself in the hideously flowered concept of a comforter. Flash through memories of playing touch-down with Paul and Bryan when we were kids and didn’t realize that life would empty us out like marbles from a bag. Scattering away in unknown directions. Paul is on a swing. Bryan and I sit in the grass holding hands. And I can hear him laughing. Laughing like crashing through a pile of dead leaves. blank Pink and mauve flowers against a quilted maze of emerald shapes wanting to be leaves. blink I’m throwing rocks. Heavy smooth rocks the color of elephants. I’m throwing rocks onto a pile of rocks. And I hear them thump. Thump. Thump against one another, as I recoil then release. It’s all I hear. The solidness of a rock and it’s resistance to penetration. The repetition of the action itself unchanged and, yet, always moving.

notes from somewhere in middle america

Proximity. It all comes down to this. When we are tired and sharing a bed too small to hold the directions our lives have taken us. I spend my time awake. Listening to the sounds of his breathing and staring into the darkness. Wishing there was more room. Wishing for different spaces. So crowded and so alone in the same moment. Wrong and right. Necessary and unforgivable. Like a tightly wound scarf in winter.

things i’ll never finish

forgotten flowers in a vase on your windowsill

all i ever need is everything

If you’ve ever wondered how I feel sometimes, listen to this song. It’s there, somewhere, stuck in a little over a minute. And soon, I’ll too be gone. Sometimes, the only thing you can do is rush away.


i spend my time, these morning hours, trying to write a poem about sam cooke
but it turns out to be more about something else
a collage of lyrics and lyric
of the sounds the words make only in my head
something about the power of music
or soul voices
about being alone in a mean world
and dying young

no visible title

only afterward, i drag to my room. crawl under the sheets fully clothed. and wait for the undertow. these worst moments come when i am sick or tired or both. the speed of the world slowed, somehow, as if i’d drunk a whole bottle of cough syrup. sticky and nauseating. tonight i yearn for the apathy of sleep. for the lack of words and the constant desire to describe the unnamable. but i never really sleep. wrapping myself in sheets that smell of a man who is merely a ghost. i realize under the cover of darkness and silence and flashes of vulnerability. i am one insignificant woman.

MEDBH McGUCKIAN The Dream-Language of Fergus

Your tounge has spent the night
In its dim sack as the shape of your foot
In its cave. Not the rudiment
Of half a vanquished sound,
The excommunicated shadow of a name,
Has rumpled the sheets of your mouth.

So Latin sleeps, they say, in Russian speech,
So one river inserted into another
Becomes a leaping, glistening, splashed
And scattered alphabet
Jutting out from the voice,
Till what began as a dog's bark
Ends with bronze, what began
With honey ends with ice;
As if an aeroplane in full flight
Launched a second plane,
The sky is stabbed by their exits
And the mistaken meaning of each.

Conversation is as necessary
Among these familiar campus trees
As the apartness of torches;
And if I am a threader
Of double-stranded words, whose
Quando has grown into now,
No text can return the honey
In its path of light from a jar,
Only a seed-fund, a pendulum,
Pressing out the diasporic snow.

[text via the aviary]

lyric of the moment

Of all the beverages I could choose from
You’re the one that I most want to put in my lunch
You’re better than Dr. Pepper. . . you’re sweeter than Hawaiian Punch
-- New Bad Things, Product

unplanned meetings

today we were all sly grins and laughter. passing notes and giggling at photos like school kids. it’d only been since thursday. and i’d not thought of him once. i felt awkward and pressured when he asked, again, if i’d travel down with him to new mexico. split the costs he said. and i looked at my shoes when i said i wasn’t sure, but really meant no. no, not ever. instead i looked up, smiled, and wondered why he pays me so much attention. we walked up the stairs talking about books and a painting of a beautiful woman we’d just seen. he stopped on the landing between floors, let out a deep breath, and asked me to lunch while looking out the window. i stood next to him and, too, looked out into the bright light reflecting off the world. cupped my hand around his elbow and said, naw, i’d better go. lots of work to do. left him standing there and walked alone to my office. checked my email. jotted a quick note to someone i adore. followed with a flurry of jacket, hat, scarf, gloves on my way to the union. we crossed paths then. he carrying weak tea and a lunch in a paper sack. me filled with other intentions. i’m just running a quick errand, i smiled feeling full of guilt. that’s a really cute hat, he said in the pause while we passed.


i am supposed to be working.

apologies posing as salutations

a line lifted from the introductory paragraph of a letter from a dear friend. wish I had thought of it.
So, don't be scared, I'm not crazy.

in a butterfly net

at 3:00 a.m. i thought of you. you and all the insignificant movements like this one that slowly pass us by. it’s always in those moments. caught between day and night. that i wonder if you’re sleeping. if you miss me somewhere deep beneath your skin. or if, just once in awhile, thoughts of me make it more difficult for you to breathe.

now i want it

the other day i saw a great fitted t-shirt on a cute girl. it read:
speaks out of turn