Monthly Archives: April 2015
To My Sister:
You have what you want right now. You’re married. By some miracle you seem to still like your husband – the bigger miracle being he still likes you. You are getting a degree doing what you want to do. You like where you live, you like the groups you have. Be depressed. Because you have everything you want and it’s not enough. Go for it. Embrace the dark, head-in-oven holes of despair. Think of sunshine as absence of the moon. Dream of sleep, and hope that sleeping lasts forever.
But, for the love of God, stop pretending you’re happy. You’re not; I can hear it in your voice. It’s fine. I like you better angry and caustic. You’re more fun to talk to. Let loose that vitriol so confined, that pure disgust of everything, it makes me laugh. It makes me love you for more than just our common mother and father. I won’t call you a type. I won’t compare to you an actress on that show I like that sort of reminds me of you. You are you. I know the you when you’re not covering, furiously sewing that deceptive quilt of “I’m okay.” You have greatness, right there.
God, be depressed, but do it like you used to do everything else. Flare it up. Shout it, scream at it, in its totality. Say, “I’m so depressed I can’t think of a reason to get out of bed today.” Say, “it can’t be that hard to hold my bladder for that long.” Complain with your whole soul. Be sad. Let yourself be sad. Stop trying to make yourself better. There’s nothing wrong with you that’s not wrong with all the women in the family, (you know exactly what I’m talking about, that sharp lack of compassion for failure, accepting that we know we can destroy anyone we know with just a couple sentences) we’re all horrible people. Cuddle with it. Know it.
Stop telling me how good, fine, and well, you are. Tell me instead of how miserable you are. Tell me how the universe will never know you. Tell me how you’re scared to be forgotten after you die. Tell me all the awful things you hate about gossips, then tell me all about the horrible people in your office. Be brave with your hatred. Be brave with your depression. Yell at me so I know you can still feel. Please? It’s so much more fun to have someone to be funny-honest, cutting mean. Frank conversations on death and sugar skulls make me smile. You make me smile better when you let yourself be. Turn off the flashlight, and smile in the soul-eating, teenage lack-of-future, this can never get better, Miyazaki black goop of our minds.
10 Poems (4-29)
i know, i’m behind schedule again. sigh.
We walked out of the restaurant smiling, with happy on our faces,
I’m thinking, no I can’t remember the last time that happened, not at all.
It was a good time.
But then I realized I was having a good time and ruined it.
You weren’t there. We got white cheese queso and had mock battles over the possession of salsa.
We were happier without you. And I was in a good mood.
No bows drawn back, no double meanings, did you catch thats,
It was just nice.
How sad it must be for you, no longer needed, now only tolerated till it’s done.
I teeter and wobble on the line between farcically melodramatic and temperate mundane.
I pull out big words when I’m uncomfortable. If I’m awkward at least they’ll know I’m not totally stupid.
But big words don’t mean thoughts, good thoughts,
Thoughts like, I’ll never be good enough as long as I keep thinking I’ll never be good enough.
I sit in the chair that seems lower than my knees, so I feel small.
He looks me over, tests my hooves, and my references.
It’s all great fun.
I want to say, I’ll do whatever you want, just give me salary.
I am a washing machine, no wait, hang on, hear me out.
I have cycles, cyclical, big word, did you see that big word?
I tell myself, I have to stop this, I can’t do this again. I can’t do this to myself again.
I shouldn’t. And then I do, I talk to him, and wish I hadn’t. I started it.
I say, I won’t do this again. I’ll take a break from him.
Then I don’t, and wish I had, because I rinsed and he responded.
And I felt a silly old rag fool.
Engrained in me are a few strings and shavings of stone.
They shore up every once in a while when I’m not looking.
You boil spaghetti in a big pot.
You give the three-fingered wave on two-lane roads.
You are polite to old people.
You bring a gift when you go somewhere.
Immoveable aspects of me.
I don’t know they’re there till something turns them wrong, and my whole me says,
No, stop, you can’t, it’s just wrong.
It’s probably why, even if I don’t “believe” I’ll bring my kids to church.
Because it is done. I must miss so much of life because of what I can’t see I can do.
You were born to be better than me.
Better in heart, soul, spirit,
Better at church, love, speaking, breathing.
But I got something you can’t touch, and it’s what will keep me in straight confidence.
I’ll never tell you when I figure it out.
I’m indecisive about whether I want a lover, one good friend, or a leader to follow.
I should pick one,
I should pick something to do, with a whole heart.
I want a braided tie to another something here around somewhere,
Maybe it’s time to look down toward my chest, touch my chin to my collar bone,
And find some passion.
I try to explain to him, Ryan, I mean, I’m trying to say why I’m friends with him.
I have an entire, a whole ethos, thing about being friends.
Is that odd? Of course it is, but I won’t be ashamed of it for you.
I think we can be friends and I can not like you.
I don’t have to think you’re great to get along.
We’re not soul friends, or good friends, or pound my chest brothers,
But we are good enough, and I like to talk to you.
I want a goat who votes,
He jumps over ballot boxes, and steel legged plastic tables
And crinkly red, white and blue paper table cloths,
Well those he stops to eat.
Then I can blame the goat,
And eat him, or freeze him, or get some cheese for my trouble.
I’ve never been on fire, not for a man or with cigarettes.
My mother would imply there was something wrong with me for it.
I never let myself have the chance to be really stupid.
Outlook on the Day
Same as You Are: Personalities Traits Online
i had myself a bit of a rant
I consider myself a fairly reasonable person. I want to understand both sides; it’s part of how I make sense of the world. If I enter an argument online I do it the same way. I don’t change a fundamental part of my nature because I become anonymous. I am the same.
I often hear, or read, that people online are so awful. I hear that anonymous users online say the worst things. They contribute in the nastiest battles. They terrorize. They group together to yell. They say things they would never say in real life. They’re worse humans. They look at filth; they are filth. But, this, is not so.
People do not suddenly change their compositions, their natures, because they’re in front of a keyboard. The same person who types from behind a wall of identity protection also speaks the same way in a bar. It is not two different people who sit down to type and sit down to eat with their families. Like in all things humans alter their course with circumstance, mood, attitude, and ambiance. But to say you’re not responsible for your actions online, or to say people are worse online, is ridiculous. It dodges the same moral responsibility as saying the drunkard bears no blame for his crimes or the angry for their words.
Those who are rude and belligerent online possess those same attributes offline as well. One might feel freer with one’s speech or actions. For the same reason flings seem easier on vacation. You know these people will disappear, and you don’t have to deal with immediate consequences on your immediate social circle. In the same way a casual comment about the vlog poster’s hideous shirt gets voiced. There can be no personal confrontational repercussions. There are rude people everywhere. The internet just keeps better track of them with the written word. Imagine if every bar fight was transcribed to a chatroom, there might be calls of indecency or rudeness, calls for bannings of bars.
Quit telling me people online are worse because they don’t have accountability, or they think they’re untouchable. If people act socially reprehensible online, it’s because they are acting socially reprehensible. They’re breaking the social guidelines of the website just like they would be breaking cultural norms if they were speaking their minds to their friends. The medium of the internet is their outlet. Those people get banned or called out, and rarely lauded, just like in normal crowd settings. The difference between the internet and face to face interaction is that anyone can see it, so it’s all up for grabs, instead of selective communities only hearing what their friends have to say.
I know this is an immensely complicated issue, because it deals with complex social-cultural interaction. I’m dealing with a small aspect. I’m just tired of hearing, the internet is a horrible place when I’m watching news video footage of bombings from all over the world.
10 Poems (4-21)
of course the first week I try a real schedule i fall a day behind.
These are ten poems I wrote today, as true as I could make them.
Just came up here to work, and no other reason.
Listened to Sweet Baby James in the car and
Rolled up the window on three pieces of my long hair; it’s too windy today.
First week without her.
I’m can’t be a mess already.
But I cut my nails short this week.
And finished my book about Robert Kennedy.
I have something else planned for tomorrow.
I repeat and repeat to myself:
Feelings are neither good nor bad,
They are. Deal with them as such; accepted.
But that does not work. Why would that work? I have no such luck.
My Mother’s voice comes into my head, and she says in the same tone she speaks,
She smiles, that knowing patronizer, grinning, how cute her emotions are,
How cute that she’s upset, why can’t she just get a job, what have I done wrong?
It must be my fault, I could have been a better mother, I can fix her if she’d let me.
And I have to tell myself, what I feel is alright, it is not wrong,
It can be improved, but it is not wrong to feel this,
It is ok. You are ok.
I tell myself what she’s never said. So I can let myself be sad. I give you permission.
The dog has the courage I don’t, because of her lack of brains.
How courageous and wonderful would I be as a bimbo?
I would be a god.
The dog, the new hated dog, she makes him mad,
Shows no shame or qualms about it.
She sits in his broken, blue chair, his chair,
And like Catwoman, she puts her head over the side and smiles at you as you come down the stairs to first spot her. It makes him so mad.
I love it.
I can’t make him mad, it’s his house I live in,
But here she is, with her beauty, gazing at him without compunction – see what I’ve done –
And watch me not care. She doesn’t mind the yelling.
I’m idolizing a dog. At least I have a hero now.
I own a little plastic kangaroo I got from a vending machine in a mall in my college town.
We were happy that day. That’s all I remember about that day.
But that stupid squishy kangaroo with black dot eyes became an object that won’t lose itself.
I put it on a desk when I see it. Then I see it on the desk and I put it in a box.
I find it in the box of papers, am disgusted it’s still around, and I’ve seen it too many times,
And I put it on the floor and toe it under the desk.
I want to keep it, but I have no place to put it, I don’t want to have a special place for something that doesn’t matter that much. So I wait for it to lose its sense of direction.
But then I vacuum and it ends up in the box with my extra Tupperware,
And I find it when I make a new spice mix, so I put it on top of the fake flowers on top of my bookcase, next to the other memories I’m not sure I want to keep up there.
I don’t want to die here. The place I was born.
I don’t know where I wan to die instead. Just not here.
I can’t die here.
I can’t die where I hated it.
I can’t die where I grew up,
Where everything had its first,
I can’t be that 50-mile statistic,
I want to at least get out.
I would be the nothing I’ve too long imagined.
(god this is depressing, I’ve got to do better than this, man, it’s just too sad)
I met a woman at the church function I got dragged to.
She told me about her motor-bike rally days over a mildly-warm taco bar.
I remember why I like to talk.
I told him once too, it’s the complications, they make people interesting. People aren’t interesting. The complications are interesting. I rebuffed him after he scoffed and I think he agreed with me.
I watch every phone call.
I’m waiting for the signs I missed last time. Am I causing the signs I missed last time by waiting for them? God I hope not, this better not be like that cat in a box physics thing. I’m being superstitious.
She’ll sound too cheery.
She’ll brush off my asking how she is; she’ll silent laugh an anecdote instead.
She’ll tell me how good it will be in a month when blank finally happens.
She’s going to get everything she wants: she’s going to go back to her dream stipend at the place she wanted, and he’s going to go to conferences, but still be interested in her, and she’s going to lose the five or six pounds without her calves getting huge, and perfect her roasted turnips, and Dad will finally talk with her about the elevated topics limited to his men, and she’ll get that new eyelet backed dress with the triangle straps, and she’ll have everything that’s in the routed plan. It won’t be enough this time, everything.
And then I’ll talk to her on the phone, and I’ll hear what I heard two years ago.
And I won’t get there in time to help even though I know I need to get down there,
I’ll let it go again, and this time Mom will miss it too,
And those conversations we had about how about are you today, rocks in pockets bad or head in oven bad, or mid-total wave drenched bad, will be over and over analyzed again,
And I’ll have missed it.
This time. But I won’t get the chance for another. Not again.
She described me so perfectly
I felt the need to change.
I didn’t want to be known.
“You don’t know me.”
She seemed shocked my torso held together with more than tape and glue.
And I lost her forever after I insulted her.
I can read people fast and well,
It’s from the danger you have to spot from distances,
I can find the hair-trigger tempers two miles back,
I have to work out this argument in my head until I can figure out how it was my fault so I can fix myself and not have to be mad at someone who I don’t know how to be mad at.
The last time I got mad was January of 2014. God it felt good.
I’m sure there’s something wrong with that.
I’m just going to listen to this song again, it’s already on repeat.
I’ll think of something before it’s over. A different way to see what you said that doesn’t make it mean.
How very official I sound.
I’m going to be posting on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays from now on.
I’ve settled some things that needed to be settled. Yay for new content.
Here look at some spring and feel better.