Thursday, April 26, 2012

round here.

untitled by xixi cao

i walk in the lights are off. __the lights are off and it's quiet. __(just what i wanted it).

so heavy


my tie's half done, flapping outside my vest. i never got through taking it off. one shoe's still on. one of my sleeve buttons open. a trail of papers falling out of my briefcase from door to bed from trying to get my keys at the door.


it's too late.

for everything.



there's never an open grocery store i haven't eaten in days.

i had to choose between the dry cleaning and the grocery. __can't carry both.

i wonder if there was another me how i'd carry us both.

(and if there wasn't, how much heavier it might be to just carry ... ___me)

_________(does anyone even know anything heavier?)


______may came home with a smooth round stone
____as small as a world and as large as alone. []


in the dark ___ all these words carved in the walls ___i can hear them
calling to be called.

names or daffodils ,

dreams i'd 


slouched by the bed. it's nice. the floor, it's nice to remind yourself it's there. i feel like i'm falling too frequently much always. ___but here, hello floor. i like you so much. soo much. ___i wish you knew how much. __you'd like me too , if you knew. if you knew you probably would i think.

nice to imagine there's a stop point, end of the sentence, time's up, burger's finished so are the fries.

the closet door is slid open. half the coat-hangers are on the ground. they don't fit properly. they jam every morning i get angry and knock a few more down. ______each time i think i hear.feel a rib break.


is there anything you need to say to me? she asks as she's rushing out. no judge. she stares back at me a few seconds surprised. i'd usually hand her a giggle or a well-wish or a slightly sweetened second. ______o k. ___see you tomorrow then. ______half a minute has morphed out of shape. yes judge. good night. _________i sound hollow. sound coming out of a pipe-smoked-tree.


my god. 
mon dieu. 

it occurs to me. 

i'm going to set fire to something soon. 


in other lives there might be solutions , or problems.

round here it's just time.

just time.

the short and long of it.

crammed into a box and stretched on a rack.

Nothing , . round . here


no   ______,here

Sunday, April 22, 2012

things, a list:

- the new Chromatics album is kapow!-yum-ilicious. if you need an example, start with the first tune (which some of you may recognize as a Neil Young cover) and go from thurrr.

- since Mar's website isn't letting me comment on posts because it hates me i'm putting this here, hey Mar:

"besides faith in a Creator who seems to bail me out a lot." <-- line of the week #fact.

- the thing that makes me happiest these days is when i get to a pedestrian crossing where i need to cross diagonally. this means no matter which light goes green, i can walk. why it is that this brings me such tremendous happiness is a mystery. but it has something to do with a feeling of fateful invincibility. a conviction that i cannot lose.

- 'i'm sorry if you like the other shoes, but you asked'.
'i did. i'm not sorry.'
'you're not just buying them because i said you should are you?'
'no. i'm buying them because they feel nicest and because they're bright blue. i'm only standing here continuing to discuss it with you because i like speaking with you and i like your eyes.'
' ... what do you like about them?'
'they're cheeky. __i know what you're thinking, they tell me'
'what am i thinking?'
'you're thinking when i take over the world and proclaim national pj day, that i should name it in your honour.'
'come back soon.'
'never soon enough.'

- everyone's been so lovely about giving me sad-music-listening tips. i thought i'd reciprocate, since i think i have the world's greatest armory of chanson trieste (here's a few that come to mind):

don't smoke in bed, nina simone (saddest love song ever made the end)
tijerina, calla
exit music (from a film), radiohead
single (photek remix), everything but the girl
gloomy sunday, billie holiday
ne me quitte pas, edith piaf
slow show, the national
from the rue vilin, max richter
spiders, snakes, a weather
leaving you behind without knowing where to go, herman & kleine 

- i'll be up for work in 3 hours and 12 minutes.

- the other thing that makes me happiest these days is playing with my mom's puppy. i like animals. this is new.  how'd this happen?

- i have serious things on my mind. big things. important things. mostly, i think it's time i resigned myself to certain truths. it maybe was always a question of timing, and it seems the answer is 'now'. and... that is hard. so i work out a lot. i run a lot. i'm in magnificent shape but that just means i have lots on my mind that i'm trying to outrun. the ghosts , the furies. thus far i've managed to keep it all together by gyming my way through it. that and senselessly buying things to distract myself. perhaps it's just time to breathe in the cloud and be done with it.

why does it feel like i'm priming myself up for some newest death?
the (wo)man is perfected.

- i'm not accustomed to receiving poems from people or love-notes or writing. the trend seems to be that i send them. but, today i received something moving. and it moved me , maybe i fell off the chair i don't know. it's hard to remember , hard to translate the heart's seismic shifts and volcanic eruptions into static, black and white words.

I'm thinking about you everytime i'm alone with myself and it makes me feel very happy and very sad at the same time.

- i'm the youngest man i know. i'm soo proud of that. i work hard to keep it that way.

- 'i get like that too sometimes you know'
'no you don't mom.'
'yes i do. i do. i think about you too when i feel it starting. i think, oh, a wave. what would q do'
(i like hearing my mom refer to me as 'q'. she seems to have picked it up)
'what's the answer?'
'what would q do?'
'oh, i don't know. __what would you do? i just think about it.'
'what does anyone do really?, what can you do?'
'press on i suppose.'
'i'd say that's about right.'

- here comes tomorrow.
here it comes.

i suppose i should stop putting it off and close my eyes.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012


untitled by pinkyhonor

i think of my days as open mouths that have to be fed each day.


i sense her looking at me every so often.__ q, that chick keeps looking your way. it's true. i know i respond.
__i excuse myself and go mingle.
it's blank. time.
__what i remember is how small her waist is in my hands when we speak (just speak). i speak too softly and she leans in too close to hear me. i breathe her in. deliberately. i do it obviously and we lock eyes for a moment. __she breaks off first. looks back at the bar where that chick keeps looking your way.

i guess it's starting again.

seems to happen in the winter.


on the train i watch a young couple. you dickhead! she says in a squeal and gives him a delicious smooch. i smile. briefcase on my lap. umbrella on top of that. hands joined in a neat clamped cluster on top of that.


every night at about seven i knock on her door.
judge, i'm thinking of heading out - is there anything i can do for you before i leave? i say. she gives me a concerned look, oh - you shouldn't be here still. of course, go home, i'll see you tomorrow. same every night. not to worry judge, just some things to finish up. good evening then. same every night.

(empty, open, eyeless, identical mouths.
such a hunger these days have.


i get a text:
 ___i had a dream. you were living with your mother because you were a
___ single parent to your illegitimate child.

i'm terrified. i can't speak. i'm a wreck for the rest of the night.


next year i'll move out alone i've decided. it's dangerous , living alone isn't usually ideal for me. better to have someone nearby. good to force me into smiling and chatting. otherwise i can't differentiate myself from the furniture and half the time i can't remember if i'm me or a dream of myself or a memory of myself that's gotten misplaced or if i'm just a reverie and the real me will be waiting somewhere when i snap out of it. maybe i'll get a place with more space and grab a friend to live in it with me. separate chambers. something like that.

perhaps having my books and frames nearby will help me. i like having them. it makes me feel like mar and monz and jinab are in the room with me. that's always a good thing.


"q u o k ?"

my mother's inadvertently witty text amuses me no end.

she calls three minutes later and spends the next 27 telling me how wonderful the voice is and tries to encourage me to watch it. and to eat more diverse foods and especially lots of olive oil - drink it if you have to. (yes mama).

"you ok?"
"yes yes, of course."
"i was worried about you, yesterday you didn't sound very good."
"good days and bad days mom" <-- she's familiar with this, this is my go-to line i say this one a lot.


"q try and sleep okay? don't sit around for hours on your laptop."
"yes naDile(roomate1)"
"sleep. ___right?"
"yes, sleep. of course of course."
"okay. good night."
"good night elDian"

(that was 4 hours ago)

Thursday, April 12, 2012


i haven't yet worked out why this is so beautiful. but it is. on. repeat.


it is a thing to swim in. like sunday bus rides or loneliness.
i do miss women whispering to me in french, __(more than anything(

one day, in the dark , on our front lawn, we'll dance wearing our pajamas.
barefoot on flowers

romance feeds the night,
__nothing needs love )more than night)

. sway your hips . there's more . always

(so it goes.

when i count up my hours i've lost -
but when i put them all together other i can't see the top.

out of fear
i not/sleep

Saturday, April 7, 2012

easter sunday

untitled by Helen Korpak

i'm at work because i don't know what else to do; . _where else to go.
__the house was too quiet, i got scared.


I've been in this city 3 months. It's not soo too long, not yet. It's long enough to have friends, but circumstances are what they are. (Maybe that's something that should go on my tombstone (I collect things that should go on my tombstone):

___Here lies apennyfortheoldguy:

___circumstances were what they were.

___in any case, he tried.

(The second thing I've been carrying around a while. I discovered it a few years ago as a truth that applied to me).


Sometimes I worry that work has become... a religion. A unifying, all-important ethos that I believe in so thoroughly it's difficult to deviate from. I do work a lot. Usually because I enjoy it, occasionally of a necessity, and sometimes, like today, as a solace. A place where I can escape from the closed shops and the silent streets and the house with milky light and laundry hanging around, with none of my art on the walls and phones too terrifyingly likely to ring. (I have a new-found phobia of the phone ringing).


this morning we dropped my sister off at the airport. back to LA she goes. with teary eyes she tells me you're the most normal person in this family. my mom and i look at each other, then at her, and laugh. yes. me and my six hits of amphetamines a day. i'm the most normal. god help us.


Life is something I enjoy best in hindsight. I can't understand this... why it is this way. The living of it, the experience of it I find usually very difficult. Taxing. Quite taxing. Yet in hindsight, when I think of it, I see it so beautifully. So much good fortune. So much grace and happiness ... (and yet, at the time, in the moment, on that day, in that interview, on that train, outside the car, next to the kiosk, by the beach, on the treadmill, talking to her, before the, after that, in the, besides a - soo too difficult). I hate that. I hate that about me I wish I were different in that regard. In Haifa whenever I was happy, on those occasions I would feel spontaneously, outrageously happy (and i could never understand why or from what depth of a tuesday afternoon or sunday morning they came from, these little sunny 10 minute gifts) I'd run to the Shrines. Run in and sit and praypraypray:

___just once dear god, just once dear alleverything,
___here, see me as i am, with the blankets aside i am here, so happy with
___you,me,us, so thankful of every cinnamon bun and train-fare i could afford,
___the hair's left on my head and every beautiful woman who kissed me back and
___see? here, look: memememe soo happy pleased satisfied happy even with the
___cloudsbirds unreadbooks left for my dinner, please remember me like this
___remember me like this
___remember me like this
___who i am was could be might be just please dear wonderfulalleverything
___remember me
___remember me


when there are problems i buy stuff. the worse i feel the better i look. (or try to look). it's important no one sees. that's important. no one deserves the weight of that. the weight of me. when i'm like this how heavy it is to be with me. the air, the water, everything is heavier. people rub their eyes they're not sure if the room just got darker. i see their neck muscles struggle with the coffee. the chairs creek. the train makes more noise carrying me. i'm sorry for it. it's important no one sees.


i am doing a job designed for people a decade younger than me. i do it well, but it does me too. incessantly busy and always bored. i'm never bored i don't know how to manage this feeling. this must be what the so-called rat-race is. i wake up everyday and shave when i would rather have my beard. it's for the resume i tell myself and it's true, it is (i can hear my resume giggling with joy every morning i wake up at 5:55 am).


Something I always thought about when I was at the Hague... especially when i heard the war-criminals speak, was the look in their eyes. That feeling of... we once were kings. The look of 'once upon a time i could have had you killed, raped, appropriated your possessions, i was the only god you would have a chance to fear'. And then, these crumpled up, decaying men sitting in the Hague dock. Defiant, melancholic, nostalgic. They all stay in the same detention unit, did you know that? These guys who carved up countries and families and made plans and executed them, and were kings together, now sit at the same table in the same mess hall in the same UN detention unit. Hey, Ratko, remember the time we got drunk after the massacre? (i imagine them saying these things to one another). Yes! Radovan, you sly dog! I'm sorry we got into that big fight the next day. We were kings! (and then more sadly, across their face it passes) for a while there, we were such kings.(It terrifies me. The thought that that conversation might exist)


i struggle through every one of my todays.
but dear god, yesterday, i was such a king.


help me.


Tuesday, April 3, 2012

why i am not writing

it takes an ocean not to break ,

untitled by mexico rosel

i can't tell you about it.

it's too repetitive. too typical. i'm actually ashamed of myself. disgusted. i can't look myself in the mirror. __again. again? (why can't you get it right Q? why can't you?

i can't tell you about it. i spend a lot of time wishing i didn't know anyone - and then there'd be no danger of blabbing



staircase, radiohead
april in paris, ella fitzgerald & louis armstrong
vladimir's blues, max richter
nightcall, kavinsky & lovefoxx


i can't engage with it. __it's like needing to sneeze or cry and not being able to.
consequently i just sort of... am. ___i'm just there. _don't know how or why . but i just find myself places.


___& i hate myself for it.


if i let myself whisper a word of it i'll be over.

not a word not a word.

(it really does,
really does

___: an ocean not to break.