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note to self

get your head out of the clouds. those words on paper sit and waste away. they say the cycle is generate, conceptualize, optimize, implement. time to play implementer.

keep your wits through this explosion. they want to tell you how to think. do not struggle. listen, understand, adapt. do not let any sliver of your mind, body, spirit be co-opted. there is only inner truth. it must remain pure.

do not censor yourself mute. speak here, now, without fear.



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Yeah we’ve all had some hard knocks, I get it. I ran with maybe a bit of a tough crowd and you’ve got like something clinical, ok.

Your eyes go wide when you talk, like there’s some sort of inspiration, like something good is gonna happen, like hope.

My eyes they’re quiet and dark and people tell me I seem thoughtful, but I guess thoughts are all you have when it’s crumbled to bits, and thoughts are really all you have when you’re on the outside of addiction. So sure, I’m full of thoughts.

So that’s how I thought; how I think. Accusatory, defensive like.

I led us on a walk down into the ravine. To shed it all away, to leave the baggage outside and get into nature and into the middle of ourselves, at the root like some weak metaphor. In spring growth is everywhere and the air is so fresh, our movements so brisk.

We’re walking and I’m trying to get to this point about human suffering and how I think we all emerge whole, like there’s a hidden phoenix in each soul, and I wonder maybe we’re just still in it, in the depths of these leaves and this ecosystem, our uprising still a dormant myth.

Can’t look in your eyes. Lost enough.

And I see down on the trail a dead bird. A tiny chick. Like those faux taxidermy birds in the gift shops at the zoo and at the museum. But this one is real. Still and delicate; still, may be warm.

And there aren’t words. We don’t know this story and this suffering. It could have been worthless. I hope it was elegant, beautiful, true.


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the power of words. the magic of silence.


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beauty in moving

There is a beauty in moving; in not lying in your arms all day. Simple beauty in escaping your stillness and turning with cogs that move steady and send the heart pulsing. The beauty of turning with the clockwork; escaping illusion. When there are no illusions.

Like Manfred on the Swiss alps; all-seeing and sublime. Beauty all-encompassing. Visible. Visceral.


outside looking in

Years ago you found me on a kitchen floor and I should have known then that was a bad sign. Four years ago and you were younger. Back then you were young and I was just a baby. A year later you took me to a show and we sat on a rooftop after, far too late into the night. I left. You called and called and wanted me to come back. I biked the wrong direction for blocks.

And then another year passed or maybe just a few months and we talked about existentialism and I told you I thought our entire lives are just trying to prove that some of it’s real, even a sliver. You took my photo and I told you things I’d never told anyone. You have a way that gets me to tell you things I’ve never told a soul.

Years have passed and I still want to tell you things I might never tell another soul. And if the world didn’t spin us into the daylight and if I didn’t have to spin wheels uphill every morning I would just get high with you and whisper my soul to float above us. I think you would see it as it lingers up there.

I can’t keep getting high in your room with the covered up window and the drugs in every crevice and the children in the closet and in the hallway. I can’t let you hold me while I want to run because the world can’t stop just because I’ve let my soul free; allowed it to escape and drift above us. Can’t escape come down.

Somewhere just below your bedroom ceiling, float demons. When you look at me they scream freedom sometimes escape. Can’t let your gaze pull my insides right outside of me.

But you’re no Manfred and we don’t have mountains, only cluttered apartments and flickering streetlights. No, maybe you’re more like Keats and I’m trapped in your urn. Small and outside us and captured and sealed within something else. Still.

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Friction Freedom



freedom feeling that i almost forgot
then suddenly i’m flying
the mechanics & the philosophy & the physics
are sliced away
the coefficient of friction dwindles with each movement
& i am drifting freely
the world melts away

pure and at mercy
and you know and i know
the forces you exert are out of your own control
and i am subject to the laws of motion
simply matter and mass

those moments
when laws are defied
when suddenly i’m punching out of my weight class
when your forces disintegrate

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Streetlife in Beijing


pedaling along, a little fish in beijing’s sea of bicycles, felt more like navigating fate than roads

remembering which of those windows of the concrete behemoth was mine felt more impossible every day over 6 weeks

trapped outside in the dead of a sharp china winter at 3am, and as the night turned into morning felt more like comedy than crisis

watching those military men march down the hallway toward us in the building into which we had trespassed felt more like this might end up being an awesome story but elspeth will lose her shit if she sees them than maybe i shouldn’t trespass in highly oppressive foreign countries 


*** response to daily prompt intense, and perhaps the beginnings of an attempt to participate in NaBloPoMo.  “Do it!!!” says my terrible jerk of a broken leg.

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