There Would Be a Goal Involved

Month: September, 2012

Sunday Poem, September 30, 2012

And Reason Remains Undaunted

Searching for things sublime I walked up into the muddy windy big hills

behind the town where trees riot according to their own laws and

one may

observe so many methods of moving green—under, over, around, across,
up the back, higher, fanning, condensing, rifled, flat in the eyes, as if
pacing a

cell, like a litter of grand objects, minutely, absorbed, one leaf at a time,
ocean-furious, nettle-streaked, roping along, unmowed, fresh out of pools,

clear as Babel,

such a tower, scattered through the heart, green in the strong sense, dart-
shook, crownly, carrying the secrets of its own heightening on

up, juster than a shot, gloomier than Milton or even his king of terrors,
idol in its dark parts, as a word coined to mean “storm” (of love) or

“waving lines”

(architectural), scorned, clean, with blazing nostrils, not a servant, not
rapid, rapid.

—Anne Carson, Decreation (2009)

A Brief Compilation of Pathetic Facebook Statuses I Have Refrained From Posting

  • When yr home friends abandon you you can just hang out with the tiny new friends that live in yr gut, they are always down to g-chat and have a really unusual perspective on Antonioni
  • how much of my life must I live without Anderson Erickson daily products I ASK YOU HOW MUCH
  • waaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa
  • dear Kenya my Swahili is quite rusty but I can still tell when you are talking about how I am fatter than the other white girl in the office
  • dear Kenya if we all just waited in line everyone’s lives would be better I swear this to you upon my mother’s undug grave
  • dear Kenya why
  • you know you are having an awesome time when you go to the bathroom at the bar and start memorizing “Lycidas” out of the notebook in yr purse until prostitutes kick you out
  • No, new friend, my tattoo does not indicate that I “grew up in a haunted house,” thanks for asking though I BID YOU ADIEU
  • baking without oven temperatures has given me a new appreciation for the inventor of numbers (nice one dude)
  • somewhere towards the dawn of the sleepless night you pray that the mosquito will just land on you and get it over with; this wish is in some small way an analog to the terminal patient’s desire for death
  • poop
  • poop everywhere
  • I miss you Chee-tos

[FYI I made like half of these up, things are actually prettay, prettay, prettay, prettay, pretty good, I am just so awesome at being a little bitch about shit that it seems a shame not to share)

I’m Her Hume Cronyn She’s My Jessica Tandy

One of my favorite things that happens here is when they run out of “loose” (coins) at the market they ask if you’ll take your change in candy. Which, OBVIOUSLY YES GIMME  IT. I would do this even if you had money to give me, kind madam, coins are made of METAL and therefore NOT DELICIOUS. Dahlian dreamland! The fungibility of sugar! &c. &c. Also it always makes me think of when I was little and basically the only way I could understand currency was as a means to obtain Hershey’s Cookies ‘n’ Creme bars at the gas station a block from my house. The other connecting thread between these two periods of my life is that in both of them I am completely fucking terrified of crossing the street.

Sunday Poem, September 23, 2012

Other Lives and Dimensions and Finally a Love Poem

My left hand will live longer than my right. The rivers
of my palms tell me so.
Never argue with rivers. Never expect your lives to finish
at the same time. I think

praying, I think clapping is how hands mourn. I think
staying up and waiting
for paintings to sigh is science. In another dimension this
is exactly what’s happening,

it’s what they write grants about: the chromodynamics
of mournful Whistlers,
the audible sorrow and beta decay of “Old Battersea Bridge.”
I like the idea of different

theres and elsewheres, an Idaho known for bluegrass,
a Bronx where people talk
like violets smell. Perhaps I am somewhere patient, somehow
kind, perhaps in the nook

of a cousin universe I’ve never defiled or betrayed
anyone. Here I have
two hands and they are vanishing, the hollow of your back
to rest my cheek against,

your voice and little else but my assiduous fear to cherish.
My hands are webbed
like the wind-torn work of a spider, like they squeezed
something in the womb

but couldn’t hang on. One of those other worlds
or a life I felt
passing through mine, or the ocean inside my mother’s belly
she had to scream out.

Here when I say “I never want to be without you,”
somewhere else I am saying
“I never want to be without you again.” And when I touch you
in each of the places we meet

in all of the lives we are, it’s with hands that are dying
and resurrected.
When I don’t touch you it’s a mistake in any life,
in each place and forever.

—Bob Hicok, Plus Shipping (1988)

The Fester’d Lily

I know this isn’t how time works or anything, but Shakespeare’s sonnet 94 could totally be about Nancy Botwin. I MEAN:

They that have power to hurt and will do none,
That do not do the thing they most do show,
Who, moving others, are themselves as stone,
Unmoved, cold, and to temptation slow

Okay, sure, her attitude toward casual sex with her bosses/coworkers/neighbors/prison girlfriend’s brothers/aggro rural bartenders may not qualify Nance as “slow”. But seriously, the big man’s definitely got her (or whatever fickle twink he was actually writing about) pegged. Leaving a trail of violence and chaos in her wake but never getting her hands dirty; pathologically secretive and wildly unpredictable; exerting an almost magical pull on everyone she encounters, but rarely, if ever, affected by others—it’s all there, Nancy Botwin in stanza form. Except maybe the beauty, the way her milk-quartz skin and anime eyes mask a take-no-prisoners ruthlessness and OH WAIT HOLD UP:

The sweetest things turn sourest by their deeds;
Lilies that fester smell far worse than weeds.

!!! I fucking love it when that happens. Lily-white and long of stem, smelling of (I’m spitballing here) Viktor & Rolf Flowerbomb—but rotten to the core. In fact, fucking evil (NSFW).

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Went to the store for eggs and olive oil, came back with all of this. My adult brain knows I am not going back to school this fall (slash ever aaaaaaah) but my child brain just wants to color. And scribble on things and smell pencil shavings and pretend a little longer. Whatever fuck it just leave me in peace, paper and pigment are all I have to play with and anyway let’s just LOOK AT THEM SOME MORE


Habeas Corpus

There was a man who got hit by a car, four feet tall. Here’s the man.


—Mary Karr’s first poem, composed age 4

Grade Explosion

“In at least one case al-Shabaab offered AK-47 rifles as prizes for academic achievement.”—United States Department of State, 2011 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices: Somalia (24 May 2012).

I don’t know, I used to get personal pan pizzas and I thought that was pretty rad.

When Life Locks You Inside Your Office—

—fuck lemonade. Lemons are expensive. Make a cup of tea, which is lukewarm, because the water heater’s on the fritz, because Kenya. Consider climbing out the windows. Discard the idea. Call your boss, who doesn’t pick up, because Kenya. Finally get around to starting your obligatory “follow-my-foreign-adventures!!” blog, because you haven’t even though you’ve been here for three weeks. Try to somehow force the door. Set off the alarm. Wrap your cardigan around your head until the alarm stops, even though security hasn’t shown up, or called, or noticed, because Kenya. Try not to think about how every single person you work with had gone home by 4:30, because Kenya. Try even harder not to think about how none of them noticed your stuff was still on your desk, because you’re the new girl and younger than all of them and tend to just sit there hunched up like a mute with a Macbook head. Consider Macbookhead as a superhero identity. Discard the idea. Look up some turnip latke recipes because it’s Rosh Hashanah. Look up the difference between turnips and rutebegas. Look up some rutebega latke recipes. Discard the idea. Ponder how a pound of turnips cost you a dollar, but the beer you bought with them cost more than ten, because Kenya. When your boss shows up, having added a good 45 minutes to his commute to let you out even though it’s your fault and he probably should have let you stew there all night, wonder why he just smiles and apologizes and asks if you were scared. Realize the answer is, because Kenya. Walk home, writing a lame blog entry in your head about how wonderful everyone is here, how giving and honorable and kind. Get your head so far up your white-girl ass that you don’t notice when a moda-boda jumps the curb on the wrong side of the road  (because Kenya ) and the guys at the corner store bust up laughing (because Kenya) and you almost fall into the trash fire that’s smoldering in the gutter (because sometimes people burn their trash here). Feel a little more at home. Hobble back to your apartment, wash the (tr)ash off your shoe, and have a shitty $3 pilsner that is not in any sense a pilsner. Because Kenya. Maybe have a couple. Because shitty beer still makes you happy. Because you’re sort of fine.