“Oh, distance has no way of making love understandable”
The square root of kiss is a hum
I hum under my breath when I contemplate the drum
of your heartbeat
and my heart beats for your breath
I revel in the wind for mere glimpses
I’m tornado over you
would you look into the eye of my storm
I whirlwind through your life like breeze
and fill your lungs
as we achieve the second power of a hum
as instruments come to life
the wind sends my high notes to indigo communions
with Coltrane’s Favorite Things
…this is my body which is given for you,
this is my blood which is given for you…
my love like the wind, uncaged
blows time into timeless whirlpools
transfiguring fear and all of its subordinates
(possession, jealousy, fear)
into crumbling dried leaves
is the wind’s slave
and, thus, is free
is the wind that is shaped
as it passes through the lips of earthly vessels
becoming words of wisdom
songs of freedom
or simply hot air
is the wind’s song
if it is up to me, I’ll never die.
if it is up to me, I’ll die tomorrow
one thousand times in an hour and live seven minutes later.
if it is up to me, the sun will never cease to shine
and the moon will never cease to glow
and I’ll dance a million tomorrows
in the sun rays of the moon waves
and bathe in the yesterdays of days to come
ignoring all of my afterthoughts
and preconceived notions
if it is up to me, it is up to me
and thus is my love
the wind is the moon’s imagination wandering
it seeps through cracks
explores the unknown
ripples the grass
my love is my soul’s imagination
how do I love thee?
- from The Seventh Octave - The Early Writings of Saul Stacey Williams
#no you don’t understand
#7+ years ago i was exploring coney island w/one of the great loves of my life
#and we found a misquote of a line from this poem written on the boardwalk
#and she and i both thought it was a sign
#because we were both girls who believed in that sort of thing
#but neither one of us knew it was from this poem
#i just found this TODAY
#and i’ll always miss her
#but we’ll always have coney island
Chapter on “Immoral Dives” from Mysteries of Chicago, George Wharton James, 1893, Chicago.
Worth the full read.
They tell me you are wicked and I believe them, for I
have seen your painted women under the gas lamps
luring the farm boys. -Carl Sandburg, from “Chicago”
Here’s a thing from an upcoming book or zine Adam Gnade is writing. Pioneers Press will publish it this winter it looks like.
1) Figure out how to balance “virtuous” with “not giving a fuck.”
2) Find the good guys and stick with them while the bad guys continue to take advantage of people and fight over money and pretend to be your friend.
3) Be honest always but never mean under the guise of being honest. Be kind but don’t be a pushover.
5) Embrace strength without oppression.
6) Be a better judge of character and see the assholes for who they are. Don’t be so naive but don’t get bitter. It’s a hard balance; a life-long process. Also: a lot of nice people will promise you things but most won’t deliver. Doesn’t mean they’re bad people. Flakiness is a huge part of the human condition. Be gentle with people.
7) Always stick up for those who can’t do so themselves. You’ll know an unfair fight when you see one. Don’t stand for it.
[originally appeared, in slightly different form, in Sad and Beautiful World #14, May/June 2009; it’s about 2004, these events will be retold in the novel, with some of these words woven in, consider this a sort-of preview of the novel.]
Past the taqueiras and Santeria shops of Pilsen, past the blue line L tracks, Maggie and I wandered the trainyard. We waved at latenight commuters on the Metra train, climbed around on empty boxcars. The wind whistled through gaping hole-eyes of abandoned warehouses. We sat down amid spindly weeds taller than our heads, and broken glass like stars brought down with slingshots to the earth. Maggie had smuggled a bottle of rum in the folds of her black trenchcoat, she unscrewed the cap and passed the bottle to me. I splashed a sip of gold and saffron fire down my throat, let it trickle down to my stomach which ached with loss, throbbed from the empty place beneath it where the son that never was had once been gestating, before – before I told Carmine that I was pregnant and he said Oh, what’re you gonna do about it? Before I took care of it, had the fetus vacuumed out at the cheap city clinic; before I told Carmine that I’d taken care of it and he pulled the What right did you have, my child too card. Before I got an e-mail from an anonymous mutual friend informing me that Carmine had been fooling around with God knows how many girls for the entirety of our relationship, telling me that he was a lying sleaze, a bastard who happened to be utterly charming. I picked up a handful of gravel, flung dusty pebbles one by one, to hear the sharp ping!s as they clattered ‘gainst the metal of lifeless boxcars. I threw one for every lie Carmine ever told me, one for every charming, extravagant word I believed was true.
Maggie took a swig from the bottle, handed it to me again, she sat silently trying to block out thoughts of her very own lovely-boy-liar, prince of her heart, demon of her dreamterrors. I wasn’t the only broken girl in that trainyard. I turned my eyes toward the sky, which was thick with ghosts & airplanes. I could see the cloud factory in the distance. It sent out billows of graywhite that floated up, up, then out across the lake, toward other cities, other states. I wished on the airplanes, on the ghosts, that one of those clouds would find its way to Carmine, that it would travel crosscountry, gathering water along the way, and when it found him, it would burst open, it would pour & weep, it would follow him and remind him in my stead. I was done crying. So I laughed, a short, ragged exhalation of air, and said – Serves me right for putting all my eggs in one bastard.
Portlandia - Tailgating A Prairie Home Companion
(The sketch that mentions O.C.M.S.)