Tuesday, October 17, 2006

the thirteenth

I have a token in my pocket worth three mints or three packets of hi-c in the psychiatric ward of Grady Hospital. Five days ago that building was just part of the skyline to me. Atlanta keeps offering up new views. I'll only thank it for the privilege if it keeps my friend off the streets.

I've always believed, stubbornly, that my love could change things - that it's strong enough, pure enough. I must be either extremely naive, egotistical, or weak.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

shutters on the fifth floor

Out the window a man sits on the roof of a tall building in downtown Atlanta. He smokes a cigarette, fidgets, stands up, puts his hands in his pockets, sits back down again. A MARTA train slides past in the distance. Grady Hospital. Clouds in the sky. He looks around.

What does the heart see?
What does it tell itself?

It paces. Shifts its weight, listlessly, from one foot to the other. Believes itself alone.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

graphite or charcoal

The need to vent my depression is asserting itself.
Don't hate me because I'm avoiding.
Two and half cups of coffee later: a blank page and I need to pee.

I'm frustrated. I want to create something beautiful but it's just not in me. Bills are in me. The past is in me. The question-mark future. I've spent the last few days looking and am dissatisfied. I've tried to become fascinated by the weather, by my lower lip, tendrils of hair, the circles and triangles of the face, but it's no use; I'm tired of looking. What I really want is to be touched. Rendered. Kissed by graphite or charcoal (lightly then heavily). The closest I get are black smears where I unconsciously swept hair away from my face or set my palm down on a self-portrait. I thought drawing would fulfill some tactile need of mine. Surprise! It's created one instead.

Saturday, October 7, 2006


come and go on the air. smell of oyster water or jasmine. ripen and rot. are fluid and sometimes dissolvable. broken down with the body. grown from the mind as weeds, as holly and oak. are cut down and recycled. shaved off. swept away or let go of. a ring tost into the ocean. a handkerchief. are crippling. chronic. meaningless and undesirable. are electric. holographic. stacks of yellowed newspapers and teacup collections. are alcoholic. addictive. fuel burnt for warmth, for knowledge. for regret. are movies we've seen before and know the ending to. cast us as heroes, villains, scapegoats, revolutionaries, romanticists, whores, great and poor musicians. wear khakis and have hair like your mother. reek of mothballs. of Chanel #1. are dizzying. explosive and unexpected as land-mines. attach as appendages. obstructions. apply makeup before going out. allow the fingers to remember where second position is on the cello and all ten digits of my first love's phone number.

Wednesday, October 4, 2006

being laughed at

Happiness is being laughed at by your instructor because you showed up at 6:00 a.m. instead of 6:00 p.m. to practice your cello in the garden. Happiness is knowing that you chose to come earlier because it was harder.