Monday, December 7, 2015

Dear Jane - Letter To A Muse Part One

"Dear Jane, are you Vivian or Lolita? Did you know? Did you write? Did you want to?"

Hey, it's me.

It's a Monday and I'm bothered by the idea of "collections." People want things but they also want money and sometimes you can't have both. So, is it better to want neither?

I want to destroy something today in order to put another thing in better order. I think I will have a reasonable amount of success.

I did a rune casting. (5. One of my lucky numbers.) And once again they did not steer me wrong. Reminding me of the big picture. One of the outstanding images I was left with included the 'curve'. There are no straight lines anywhere. Not in my practice, not in my life, nor in the world.
Sometimes a steep drop. Sometimes a gentle rise. Never a route that is not somehow circuitous. And why is straightness valued so highly anyhow?
I am happy to be engaged in process today. Some days it's quite frustrating.

Reality- (used to be a friend of mine... get it?)
I see an old man on the train whose profile looks strikingly like that of Sam Shepard. I wonder if I will ever write a good play. Probably not. Probably need to commit to reading more of them.

I wonder what my grandfather dreamed about last night in his late late octogenarian sleep. The white light is creeping in. He won't notice it until the invitation becomes too bright to ignore. About a week out from the night when he finally climbs into it and shoots his soul back into the collected soul-light-ether-cloud.
Reality. Just a stop on a round-trip ticket.

And I think that by telling others about my planned fearlessness that it will affirm my bold non-action. Is it a coward's guess? That by sharing a scheme it almost made it so? My companion might believe in the truth of my mind and delight in all its dirty reverie.

In my short story I thought of how perverse it could have been. And the regret was not just in the not-saying of the words, but in not removing the hairtie and not delivering the required smirk.
The story could have been about drugs, but the tidy noise of it all really comes down to the paycheck. Gimmie money and I'll be so hard and straight for you. I'll take myself right back out of my grandfather's orderless fantasy and put all my laced-up intentions back into your palm for 20/hr.
Grandpa- I bet his brain is all its own drug and now all he needs. All the anymore of any possibility is there.

We both picture our dreams- our parallel nite-life lived in the false flight of sleep- as the dark side of the soul. Yang to a Yin sweet and warm.
And this great ball rises up out of us toward a rejoining place. It should not be pictured or identified as a body-shape. May it be instead circular and perfect and floating free. Without demands. Without judgement.

Another question. This time for Mother- did you have cravings with me? If so, what were they? Did my father have to go out again and again into the starry Pennsylvania night to get them?
I thought so. I hope they were insipid and exotic both while I churned in my early sleep in the deep-deep-down-below of that lightless womb. I just hope they weren't cheerios and they weren't ice cream. Too obvious. Maybe instead really fresh pasta and incredible marinara. Spicy and savory. I could have been Italian. Lemonade or fruit juice. I could have been Brazilian.
Is the list disgustingly long for all the consumption? Please, tell me too it wasn't sausage.

Dear Jane - Letter To A Muse Part Two

So anyway, the temporary tattoo on my wrist is fading. I like the colors and the jagged dragon/wave patterns that are left.
Around noon I went to masturbate and just fell asleep instead. It was a sugar crash from a doughnut.
I didn't even fold the dried laundry for being so lazy.

Cold air but bright sky. I'm in class now with lips burning from lunch at the noodle shop. Spicy. I have a good book and a leftover danish. That's for next class.

Sometimes I enjoy the cradle of the train. The simplicity of sitting back in a ride toward a predictable, familiar destination. I am able to rally my relaxed sensibilities into thoughts like:

"YE GODS, who have seen fit to redeem this broad of her exquisitely painful love-tortures by coughing up her best and most true. Her amazing and happy and hearty and worthy husband. She/I pay you many many thanks."

And that is the beauty of the day. Gratitude radiating out in all directions.

The barista, who is selling me an overpriced spinach croissant, compliments my ring and I smile and thank her and watch the other staff members in red aprons hang heart decorations on chains from the ceiling for Valentine's day at an hour that seems way too early in the morning for this. At least for me. I don't wish I was in bed, but I don't wish I was here either.

On the drive over I saw a boy hustling up the street with his face painted all green. His mouth looked like he was shouting. He had a backpack like a student and I imagined he's simply discovered a very innovative way to hate school.

It's busier in here than usual this morning- a Thursday after a band practice which dissolved into shouting and then an odd dance party. Maybe we were drunk. Needless to say I've got lyrics to write. Lyrics that name drop 80s shit in the poppiest tune we've written yet.

Being in 2 bands is coming down to a question of management and priorities. Each of us has  projects that certainly take precedent in our lives, scattered as they are across the city in pursuit of art. We make lists, we procrastinate, we do what it occurs to us is the right thing at the right time... mostly.

The temporary tattoo is almost gone and the conclusion I've come to is that I could probably rock a really cool group of ink right there. Maybe someday when I get over the idea that I can't teach with too many visible tats.

It's snowing now in a fine dust like someone shook up a snowglobe. Chicago under glass... the survival dome of the atmosphere clinging beautifully and stubbornly and birthing the sky in the shape of a grey-white ceiling we could never live without.
The sky rescues me sometimes when my hard gaze is turned too far groundward and I can't breathe right for the compressions of memories thick with past injustices, I can look up and the bright slate offers my vision a cool drink. A deep breath and a resting place and a reason to relax. Then I can remember music and begin to hum it. My mouth remembers the greatest extension of itself and the corners turn up into a smile for no particular reason.

Last night I watched him as he read to me from a good book in bed. I asked if he would and he said yes and then there we were. Naked and in bed, which is the best place a couple can be, he wearing only his glasses and his arms standing out in the light. Chest hair and soft shades of muscle and tattoo shape.

My husband turns 49 in a week. It will be the first of many birthdays I get to celebrate with him and I'm very excited to make it special, which is generally my m.o. with b-days. Good friends get cake and beer and pie and I. A card, a kiss.

Meanwhile my body aches like hard silver in acid. About to birth blood. Ovarian key twirling in a lock with a blade at the bottom.
Blond tips. Sassy on the fretless. Big black boots and double plaid.

The barista can't stop whistling at this point- mouth exercises getting distracting but who cares? I could learn to love the echo in this room.
At home I should probably use my desk more often than I currently do. Maybe it's something I'll grow into. I love the set up. I could switch lamps for one that throws a better light. I can trick myself into feeling invited. Party of one. Ready to raid my own notes for possibilities and my own scraps for treasures. A gang of hidden mechanics to bless me blissed and cull and bind all my inspirited laters.
More notes to get remaid alive- up out of their dead minute and into hot sparks of living potential. Just when everyone thinks I've disappeared I'll be back better than ever. It's that trick of the mind's eye that plays havoc with self-injected false senses of security.

That's something you said to me:
"What you think you're worth is always less until you see what better really is. Try better. Better is a rainbow beaming into tomorrow."

…Meanwhile I am a tourist in Montreal and the sweet French Canadian barista is trying to ask me for a tampon. I think she's desperate and after all her hard work explaining, mostly with hand gestures, I come up empty and feeling terrible for that fact.
This cafe is the first place we've stopped from being out walking in the rain after pulling in about an hour ago- our first time in town too, and that naked-but-still woefully inadequate tourist-ish sensation is settling in fast. This underlined by another odd highlight of the visit- bums outside the art museum. A fight between a couple of them breaks out over some-such and its frog-bark! Frog-bark! And maybe some light pushing before they decide they're too drunk to keep caring.

And the beauty of non-English speaking countries is the clean glory of simple sounds out of the mouth. To translate or fight the air in the brain for meaning is to admit profanities. Often life is simpler and cleaner and maybe more graceful without readily accepted invectives.

Sunday, November 8, 2015


gods of september bleeding forward
over biblical bubblegums cinnamon time
trusted to wire the present to uncertainty
sizzling severed jesus stains clouds
and manholes city indisposed
of piss thick revolution
on a black mat there go meditators open faced
the guitar plays the typewriter plays the monkey
heaven pulled from weak lights to tornadoes
hauling prayer like mountains into the spectrum
castigate the new until the old becomes lost to use.

alpine breezes
chamber pots
in the dark for satin wax and square dances
who hopes for atrocious sexy people in pink eyeshadow
horsehair sofas left
by the road the men put a tree down 
spiked hard with a church of 1000 lights
and 25 cent saturday nights.
opposing school breaks
into oak blocks and bake shops
The oven is on and breathing deeply
baking strays and strangers
and the mooring mountains are want for a hot cup
of quiet which finds nouns and kitchen parties
passing verb soufflé, adjective casserole.

If I could spit paint... I would also spit things in nature. I would spit trees.
Plants. Carnivorous plants.
I would spit doors and houses for my friends to walk thru and live in. I might spit money.
Spitting spies to assign takeover missions for them. The act of spitting records and cassettes would thrill my friends. Coughing up electronic things makes me a genius and a god.
If I could spit paint my canvasses would be rank with postmodern insensibility.
I would produce whole works, the paint already dry, the brush strokes predetermined.
A work that truly came from within.
So much for buying up the world.
So glad that the disaster can be fathomed, then forgotten.

A magic bottle of red wine that never stops pouring and is delicious every time.
A magic coffee cup that stays full and hot with magnificent brew.
A magic water glass- cold, fresh and clear.
A magic notebook- the pages growing up under the pen.
A magic pen- all the ink ever needed for all the right words.

A magic mind.