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welcome!

Jan. 1st, 2015 | 12:00 am

Hello! This journal is now not-really-friends-only-but-still-sort-of-friends-only. This was prompted by a sudden, ceaseless influx of "costume evil queen sexy" and "what is good credit score?" comments, and not because this journal contains very interesting stories about my salacious love life. (I have no love life, just to clarify.)

If you're looking for my fic, they can now be found at ricuh. Please feel free to leave comments and criticism there!

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poets against the world

May. 29th, 2011 | 03:35 pm

 
remember how one summer you and i took to the road, watching horizons stretch before us like lines out of every untold story, windows down because we couldn't afford a bright red convertible, and how we'd have to shout to be heard over the whip-thin sounds of the wind? remember remember, we'd stop the car in the middle of a desert and sit under the shade of the opened trunk and write for hours, me on my laptop and you with your pen, hunched over a spiral-bound notebook, edges worn away with cheap coffee. what true art has come from a laptop, you scoffed, the true poet lets their soul bleed on paper, finds art in the blotches of ink. remember how i rolled my eyes, remember how i said the true poet conquers the world with the word alone, remember how i read you lines and phrases, lean with little descriptions, all muscle and sinew, remember how remember how you hummed as i spoke, eyes bright with appreciation, nodded helplessly at the technical mastery of alliteration, onomatopoeia, at the meter and rhyme, at my voice rolling like waves. but you wouldn't remember how your stanzas, weighed down with excess words, punctuation like sturdy necklaces looped around fat necks, punched past my defences and left me breathless with want. you wouldn't remember how i wrote every poem for you that summer, saved file after file of a word, a sentence, of your ink-speckled hands on the driving wheel and your smile against the sunset and the breathless romanticism of it all.


remember how one night we attended a poetry slam, took a table near the back and ordered cheap beer after beer, choking on the wafting cigarette smoke from other tables and stealing each other's yam fries, and how we rubbed grease and ink smudges onto napkins as we jotted down lyrics and quotes and the littlest seeds of a poem? remember how our palms ached from all the applause, remember how remember when you just clenched your hands into fists as someone read your father's favorite, emerson's give all to love, the one you read until your voice collapsed into whispers as he breathed quietly in the hospital bed and remember how you leaned over when it was over, as i was clapping, and whispered, dirty-deep, give all to love, the wildest, / the quietest of beasts. remember how i dared you then, biting back tears and grinning into your shoulder, to go up there and read, a proper send-off to a proper poet, and how you cleared your throat against the pulsing sorrow and stood up, swaying against the six bottles of budweiser. but you wouldn't remember how i cataloged each break of your voice each hitch of your breath the every cadence of every stanza. you wouldn't remember how i fell captive to your conquering verse, how my shoulders bent against the howling force of your words, how my breath shuddered and my eyes shuttered shut against the breathless ache of it all.

 

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twenty minutes in a starbucks

May. 23rd, 2011 | 12:27 am

 
five to eleven. all of a sudden the starbucks is bursting with noise, with conversation. my earbuds are securely in my ears, with adele's "rolling in the deep" playing on repeat, so i'm not as lonely as i could be. and i've got my notebook & a pen that writes well enough, so i'm never at a loss for company, transparent & lacking though my words may be.


who will write the story for the times? the defining epic of the 21st century, the pride & prejudice of the starbucks era, the novel about the students who stretch a tall cup of awake tea over three hours and two problem sets, of the high school friends who meet up for a smoke and a chat spanning girls, sex, work and politics?


five after eleven. the golden-haired boy who sat at the square table for the handicapped (or whatever the politically correct term for it is) and pored over carefully written notes organized carefully into a binder has left, slinging his backpack over his left shoulder carelessly. the time he spent studying here in this starbucks is but a line, a phrase — maybe a paragraph, depending on whether or not he had any epiphanies with his frapuccino. where it's written in is the mystery, the question keeping readers on their toes. is it a novel? an epic? a novella? short story? maybe this moment is the sentence before the last, the lead up to a dazzling, frightening finale.

 

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what is this sadness i feel

Apr. 13th, 2011 | 10:37 pm

 
what is this sadness we feel, we of the twenty-first century? sadness for our parents' generation is fleeting moments, gathering in the pockets of after. after the get-together, when the acquaintances singing bawdy '70s love songs with their faces red and a used spoon clutched in their hands like microphones have left. after the quiet family dinner, when everyone's scattered a person a room and no one looks at the dad when he offers them a slice of sweet bread. their sorrow they carry in their hearts, letting it fall to second place, always second place, in the face of everything they need to do. the fear of growing irrelevant, the weight of existence, the crushing vastness of the universe, the resilience of regret—all this they know, and all this they gather to themselves; their fingers have grown callused trying to hold together the seams of their life together around the swelling emotion that beats against their chest like a wounded beast. but this sadness, the sadness of the twenty-first century brats, is never so eloquent, so serene. our sadness is one that burns constantly, weeps openly, strips naked in the neon highlights of downtown and whores itself out for the heat of a drag from a half-smoked cigarette. our sadness drinks too much smokes too much laughs too hard moans too loud. our sadness listens to music with the volume turned all the way up until the heavy pulse of the bass becomes our own, because it's easier to address the ache when it's from tears in the walls, from seeping blood.

our sadness is a cold bed and crushing darkness and the sounds of a house settling in at night.

 

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i should have built you a home

Mar. 23rd, 2011 | 01:44 am

 
i built you a city, one of the busy ones you like so much, a city deafened by its own roar. i built you a city that beats in time with my pulse, a city that wakes when you wake, broken-hearted people sweeping the floors of dimmed cafes at four-thirty in the morning as the whole of the metropolis is busy dreaming, a city that sleeps when you sleep, teenaged couples kissing chaste goodbyes underneath wrought iron streetlamps. i built you a city populated with both buildings faded with strains of ivy and buildings cut from steel and glass alone, with strangers that smile as they pass you on the streets, with more secondhand bookstores than grocery stores, with pockets of forest caught between highrise apartments; a city more brilliant than the quiet of the universe when the sky grows dark. i built you a city you'd call paradise, where the shards of the vases we throw at each other never sink into the soles of our bared feet, where the words we spit at each other never lie on our skins like vivid tattooes. i built you a city someplace deep, so that you would always be protected, but too many strangers became friends and too many outsiders wanted in that they depleted my time and my energy, and you deserve better than to wait for tired laughter. i built you a city something beautiful, so that you would always wander the streets with your eyes wide in wonder, but they stood towers too tall and skyscrapers too spindly that they pierced the walls of my heart, and you deserve better than to feel constantly the ache you do when you see such jagged scars. i built you a city, a city sprawled trembling and alive, but i should have built you a house, with one bed we'd have to share and one shower we'd forget to take turns using and one kitchen, tiny and cozy, where the sharp corners of our hips would collide every morning as we fuss over an ancient coffee machine.

 

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too much too late

Feb. 22nd, 2011 | 05:27 pm

 
What happens when we all have too much? What happens when we are so mired in shit we can no longer move? What happens when we cut down all the trees, conquer every mountain, mine every ore, drain all the lakes, catch all the fish, hunt all the animals? What happens when we've finished polluting the atmosphere and destroyed the ozone layer and carefully, with kindness, integrated every indigenous tribe into a consumerist society like ours? What happens when everyone has everything, when we've got different clothes for every day and enough makeup to cake our faces in every hour and a car for every week, a new house for every year? What happens what happens what happens when we've run out of things to sell, when all the fleeting happiness at losing a pound is lost because everyone is cookie-cut beautiful, hair volumized and face clear and breasts perfect? Will we sell emotions outright, not as a byproduct of some prepackaged material? I know what we can do: tax emotions, tax public displays of affection, tax crying when your lover breaks up with you via text message. Marriage proposals are $500; weddings upwards of a thousand. Romantic dinners just $20 if you opt for the "diner+movie+necking in the car" package, but if you want to dress up and go to a nice restaurant and maybe dance a little to the slow jazz played live, you've got to shell out $100, at least, and then pay for the dinner and tip the musicians and the waiters. Tax feeling, because ultimately people are going to get all the stuff they've yearned for and then they're going to sit surrounded with the shit they've bought and paid for, wondering at how little the human body truly needs. Tax love, because at the end of every sale and every purchase people will realize all they've ever wanted is a little piece of heart, the pulse you feel when you press your ear to your lover's chest in the darkest hours of night.

 

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everything is art

Feb. 12th, 2011 | 12:53 pm

 
ribcage, pelvis, & the tiny bones of your feet. everything is art, the spread of your eyelashes, the points of your elbows. i'd like to be a brute & smother your delicate lines, keep you tucked away in my bed with plenty of pillows for us both. curators around the world would despair if they knew of your strong legs & graceful neck, of the way your throat cages birds & beasts alike, of the poetry that pulses in your heart, but they don't, & they won't, because i'd like to be selfish, for once without guilt; i'd like to be selfish & greedy & trap you, spread you upon my bed with all your hubris & chaos & kindness & lies, & i'd ignore the poetry & the geography & the aesthetics of your body & just settle in, rest my ear upon your chest, upon the valley where your heart lies nestled between your lungs. i'd like to feel each exhale like my own, i'd like to feel every inhale like a discarded gift. i'd like to be ignorant of your mona lisa smile & renaissance limbs & the way each thrum of your voice rivals the best of baroque. everything is art, the strength in your hips & the tread of your ribs, but i do not know art, i only know your rough, artless draws of breath.

 

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i'd like

Dec. 9th, 2010 | 01:28 am

 

i'd like to go through life feeling nothing but pure physical sensations. feelings, but not feelings.

then i could reach out a steady hand & caress your face, smooth my thumb over the five-o'clock shadow cast along your jawline, & close my eyes not from heartbreak but because i can feel every hair, sense your pulse & your breath. then i could walk barefoot into town, face blank against the strange looks & concerned glances, & each step would be a sharp tang i'd savor in the back of my throat, not punishment or penance but pure pain.

i would never smile or laugh or cry, because i'd never feel emotions, but i'd feel the touch of your hand in excruciating detail, the whorls on your fingertips & the edge of your nails.


i'm tired of feeling.

 

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something i like

May. 7th, 2010 | 04:28 am

wordsCollapse )

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tango

Apr. 7th, 2010 | 12:29 am

three pieces and a story.

1. astor piazzolla - violen tango
2. ryuuichi sakamoto - tango (version castellano)
3. gotan project - tango cancion

at the end of the world, you tango together. you'd learnt tango from your mother and father, staring at them from the counter, feet getting wet in the sink, watching their toes flit against the dirty tiles of the kitchen. you'd copied the way your mother swayed, her wispy sigh, the curl of her mouth, and found at once her movements so secretive and supple. now, though, the bent of the wrist, the regal curve of the neck—it all comes so easily. you've just buried what's left of your father with the ashes of your mother, and the nuclear fallout still has him disorientated, but you're not all going straight either, so the two of you hold each other close and step, careful, around the debris. the tatters of your jeans weave around your thighs and his when he spins you, singed edges crumbling into dust as your thighs press together weakly. when he dips you, you throw your head back and laugh. he loses his balance and as the two of you tumble to the ground, radiation shot like burns through flesh, you suddenly remember. the tango, your father had said, dipping your mother, her head dangerously close to the refrigerator handle, the most passionate dance of all.

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