Saturday, December 31, 2016

Burst Forth: A Symphony of Citrus

The excitement and shade of it all...

2016 comes to a close.

And while it was a suck hole of a year, I still can say:

I am happier, healthier, having more fun, feeling more content, more committed, more loved, more held, more able, more excited, more blessed, more fabulous, and more generous, more adventurous, and more connected than ever before.

The things I decided to change at the beginning of 2016 I hunkered down, stuck to, and changed.

The things I set to achieve in the beginning of 2016 have come to fruition times a thousand.

It feels good.

While there are plenty of reasons to mourn, rage, and organize on both personal and political levels, I'm going to keep this entry to a particular and needed personal note.

Said simply:

Set what is your true heart's desire within your frame of vision.

Even if it's only in your mind.

Especially if it's only in your mind.

Pay attention.

Take risks.

The universe will conspire to assist you.

To life you.


Typing from high atop a mountain I never realized existed at this time last year,

until I dreamt  of it,


k.

(image: Shyloh Wilkinson by Matthew Pandolfe via endarkenment tumblr)

Sunday, December 25, 2016

Always



...she interrupted him with a sympathetic but firm smile: "That's hardly relevant now and, besides, my time is not like this piece of chewing-gum." Muriel was completely taken aback (as well as somewhat in awe of this attractive, elegant, educated woman, who was, of course, very well dressed), because there was no chewing-gum in sight, not even an empty packet on the desk or the merest whiff of mint or strawberry.  True, the office was so pleasant and so highly perfumed that no other odour could possibly have survived, and at first, Muriel felt as if he were floating helplessly in the air, drunk or even drugged. 

-Javier Marías, Thus Bad Begins





This year I  have managed to dodge any loud build up to this day. I find myself left typing at a kitchen table with the periodic spattering sound of a hanging plant that is dripping excess water onto a lovingly placed towel on the floor. Things have been busy and warm as of late, and I have about twenty minutes before the whirl begins again: I am steam and eucalyptus and ready for all of it.

I am thinking of you.  

Even in the most official and uniformed sense: How could I not? 

It isn't often that the mirror reflects back the eyes of another, and it is these types of intricacies that are no longer something I would wish to rid myself of.


Be well; be loved,

k.

(excerpt from the new Marías book. English version released November 2016. We shall see. This British spelling of things always trips me up, but admittedly charms me.)

Sunday, December 18, 2016

Fountainhead

If I could tell you anything, I would tell you everything.  It sounds grandiose, I know, but it is as true as the colors of the flecks that are hidden deep within your eyes. 

I see them, you know.

I could draw them for you.  



It would embarrass as much as it would flatter you. 

The other evening, I was walking down the street of a small town I'm not too familiar with.  There was slight ice and the smell of frozen grass.  I wondered what it must have been like for you as a child growing up amidst apple orchards with such rotten parents.



k.
(image via cucarachaa tumblr)


Thursday, December 15, 2016

Do You Believe in Magic?

It is cold, tonight. Peppermint tea and sweaters aren't cutting it. The hum of fluorescents only amplify this fact in a space as large and open as a warehouse.

I've been thinking of Chaya as of late.  Missing her. I want to get all zen about everything and act like we are all part of the same energy, Chaya isn't actually gone, she was never here, blah blah blah, but I just can't. I miss our conversations. I miss the hilarity. I miss the red lipstick and red knee highs. I miss the fact that we were two loud and laddish lady boys who took chances and risks that we knew we would always be blamed for.  Why not do what the fuck we want when we are going to be woman hated for it anyway?  Why not do what the fuck we want when we are going to be man undermined in it anyway?

And so we did.

And that is one of the spaces I miss her in. The black lace lingerie of one forever perceived as the mistress.  The other woman.  The harlot. The unmarried artist.  The untrustable. The brilliant. The naive. The tomboy. The adventurer.  The maniac.  The psycho.  The obsessive. The spontaneous. The shining. The counselor. The sprite. The bad ass.  The intimidating. The entire. The uncatchable. The untethered. The elusive. The vaporous. The gone.


I love you. In red motorcycle pants. In gold fingernail polish. In the aisles of thrift stores. In the tea room in that seedy spa we would find ourselves at from time to time.

I know you are all around, but, I just need you to know that here, tonight, sitting at this desk and typing out what will never really end, that, I love you.

I love you.



k.

(image: Yohji Yamamoto A/W2009 via
witches sabbath tumblr)

Monday, November 21, 2016

Black Lace Upon Obsidian


I have been wearing a purple-gray lipstick named Smoked Purple, as of late. I find it fits most of my moods and situations, currently.

This morning and into this early evening has been a bit of misadventure mixed with really good food. So, in all, there isn't too much to complain about.  If anything, I have learned quite a bit more about GPS tracking.

(pause)

A few days ago, I was presented with a ring in your typical ring presentation type box. The kind that makes the ring look like it is sitting upon a pillowed cloud.  It is black as opposed to diamonds and glitz, but, would I have it any other way? Brutality and the inscription within its band is what matters.  Love for the dark at heart.

It, of course, has nothing to do with marriage and everything to do with liberation.

Let the games and thorns of self-promise, begin.


k.


(Image via thedeathofcool tumblr)
(Title: Via MAC aka Name of the color of lipstick I have been wearing, as of late)

Monday, October 31, 2016

Pouring Imagination: On White Supremacy and Reading


I've been reading a book of essays that has me thinking about aspects of fiction that I've never thought about. In one of the essays, the author (Neil Gaiman) talks about how fiction builds the capacity for empathy.  That when one is watching television or a film, they are watching things happen to people. While in fiction, on the other hand, one is seeing things first hand through the eyes of another: A person, a place, an environment and a world that the reader has created in their own mind though the words of the author. He asserts that there is something fundamentally different about this experience, and that it aids in building empathy.

It makes sense to me. I'll have to think on this more.

It gets complicated when one thinks of imagination and what informs it. (White supremacy, capitalism, etc.) Even with books that quite clearly describe a character, a person will imagine them how they choose. (Here, I'm thinking of all of that backlash against the first Hunger Games film when a character described as having dark skin was portrayed by a black actress. So many of the white readers were hellbent on erasure. They acted surprised and/or mad and/or disappointed that this character was portrayed by a black actress.) And so, if reading builds the capacity for empathy, does it still only build capacity for empathy with the limits of what and who a person can or will imagine? 

What is it that white readers, in particular, can do to develop an empathy that is not white centered? 

Who is taught and who one chooses to read is never an innocent thing.  It is the reason I stopped reading cis, heterosexual, U.S.-born, middle and upper class white men when I was in high school.  There are times I stick my toes into their stories, but even with these men I choose men who write literature that has been stigmatized at times. (Here I'm thinking of the four Stephen King books I have ever read.)  I can't bring myself to read the bullshit parade of cis, straight, white U.S. dudes (who are usually alcoholics and BORRR-RINNNNG as they recount their adventures) because I feel like it's rotting my brain.  Their stories are the stories imposed on fucking everyone. If you're choking and saying things like "But some of them are really good writers!", I say, "Who fucking cares? I'm tired of hearing them."

I made a decision a long time ago in my reading that corresponds to everything else:  That the closer you get to listening to, hearing, reading, believing and supporting poor, non-U.S. born, non-English-as-a-first-language, disabled, transwomen of color, the closer you are going to get to understanding what the fuck is going on in this country and in this world. And this has a direct impact on imagination, on empathy, and following, on the world itself.

It may be a soapbox that I'm on. I don't care.  Rather, it's precisely because I do care:  The next time you reach for the book of a cis, straight, temporarily able bodied U.S. born white guy, do yourself, your imagination, your brain and the world a favor and pick something else.


k.


[Take a three minutes to read this bad ass and enjoyable bit having to do with art and artists by Teresita Fernandez,  here. ]

(image from Street Etiquette's mood board)



Thursday, October 27, 2016

Cloak and Dagger Vacations

Tonight I am
black cherry and chocolate
out of town and
en route to
the forest.

Make no mistake

There will be no
falling tents and wet hair

We will be
fireplaces and cabins
tarot cards and the

quick
snap
click

of struck matches


k.

(image: Rosalind Russell via Amortentia tumblr )

Sunday, October 23, 2016

The Seven of Cups, Tonight

Early this year, you came to visit me. We had a small number of hours before you would be on a plane heading to my hometown. You would walk on the same ground in the same museum I went to as a child on a field trip. You would go there and let the art absorb you. You would go there with a friend I had sent you to whom I've known since I was 16. You in the state I grew up in.  You who would be loved and taken care of by the people who love me.

(pause)

I took a picture of our shoes next to each other that night before you left: My gold foil kitten heels and your tan hide cowboy boots. 

Unknown to me, before you left in the morning, you stuffed a bundle of three sweaters into my closet.  Later that day, from more than half way across the nation you would text me and say that you couldn't fit them in your suitcase so you were leaving them with me for safe keeping.

I kept them for you.

In a tidy stack in my bedroom closet that was, otherwise, a mess.

(pause)

The night that I found out that you were dead I came home, took one of the sweaters out of my closet, wrapped it around myself and cried myself to sleep.

There are so many things to tell you.

Like how that night a few weeks ago, within the window of when you died, I was dreaming.  And how, while I was dreaming, I could feel you behind me. You, and another person, although I wasn't sure who it was. You were behind me and I was looking at a rural highway with a field of straw-like grass behind it. There were cops everywhere, but barely any street lamps.  Just the dark illuminated by the headlights of cop cars and multiple spinning red and blue. I didn't know what I was looking at, then. I kept staring and straining my eyes to see what it was that I was looking at, because I was standing too far away.  What was it that had happened?  Why there were so many police cars, and why was it so dark?  I turned my head gentle but reluctant to my shoulder.  I wondered why it was  that I could feel you behind me, but had not seen you yet.

I didn't know then what it was that I was looking at in my dream.  What was happening, or what would happen, a handful of states away.

I wouldn't know for another two days when Z called me from Prague and we tried to piece together why you were missing.



(pause)

I haven't been able to write here since I found out.

This is a medium that we shared.

I won't be able to look at the letters you've sent me, or the trinkets you've mailed me, or think- too hard or too much- on anything having to do with you too directly quite yet.

But I know you are around.

I listened to your last voicemail the other day.  The one from a few days before you died.

You announced who you were calling and who you were (as we both always did; as if we wouldn't know) and then said:

"I'm calling to sing you a song. It goes like this:

Do you believe in magic? That's all of the song I remember. I'll talk to you soon."




k.

(photo: A photo of the actual scene. It is identical from the vantage point, details and distance of what I was watching while I slept the night that you left this world in the form you were in. I awoke from this dream just before 2am that night. It was just before 4am where you were. The call to the police would come in at 4:30am.)

Sunday, October 2, 2016

Don't Hunt Me While I'm Waiting: A Gentleman's Guide to Slowing Your Roll

Putting two and two and four together.

In my dreams, I have been adding 18 and 15 together to get 33.

That number of trinities.

It's ridiculous that my mind can do that while I'm sleeping.

Math is not my strong suit.

I have 120 days to press my tongue upon the backs of my teeth.

"Don't forget about me!" you said.

I responded by saying

"That's ridiculous."

(pause)


People come on strong these days.

Hurried and expectant.

They sense a gap in my attention, and they flock to it not as birds, but as fruit flies.

Swarm.

Just because I have a pause in my time spent does not mean it is an invitation.

Surely you must know by now that I am a gentleman with a mission.

I may meet you one night for a drink

to show you my leather gloves

or to gather some information that you have

but I will keep my jacket buttoned

until I want to take it off

and I will snap your neck

if you pressure me.






be well; be loved,

k.

(image: Christian Louboutin for Bibhu Mohapatra Fall 2016)
(last two lines are inspired by/a variation of a line written by lecoledesfemmes on instagram)

Friday, September 30, 2016

How You Touch Me Three Days Before Arriving

If I could tell you everything, I surely would.

(pause)

Recently,  have been researching the character of Pierrot. There are so many places in music and theater and film and art that he shows up. Slight variations, but always recognizable. The interpretations are astounding. Pierrot is a character I had never been aware of but once named- I recall seeing him everywhere.

The image, here, is Aubrey Beardsley's piece entitled The Death of Pierrot.  Pierrot is there, on the far left, dead or dying in the bed. The skullcap upon his head is nodded fowards, as are the ruffles about his collar and wrists. His pale white face and delicate hands.

(pause)


There is a taste in my mouth of a human craving. I know you will be away for a bit.  The closing of these chapters are exciting.  Our meetings - of handed off envelopes and of tongues at night- are electric. The pieces of you that you find boring or too classic are exactly those I enjoy diving deeper into.  The best lessons are those that are explored alone, only to return together and improve them.

I will see you soon, or I will see you in roughly six months from now. The ghost of your spirit is upon me when there are hardly city lights at night and so, to some degree, it makes no difference.

Пока ; Пока as they say.

be well; be loved,

k.

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Magic Horse


Life has been a beautiful capsule as of late.

I have felt loved. Supported. Stimulated. Desired. Effective.

All of these are good things.

Reading and pleasures of the body are in the same category for me, so I can't percentage them out for you.

I can just say that I have been incredibly satisfied as of late. 

(pause)

I like the flirtations that continue to exist because of who we are.

The phone calls that I get come to me from within the thick dark that only exists behind theater curtains. I enjoy the mismatched image of theater make up smeared upon the bright display of a cellphone screen pressed against an ear, a cheekbone, a bit of mouth.

You are from another era, that is certain.

So am I.

I find it funny to have you extend your white gloved hand,
an offer to lead me into the dark,
and have it met with the black smooth leather

of mine. 




k.

(image: Phil Leonard's Flickr via redfoxintheart tumblr)

Thursday, September 8, 2016

Filter of Philtre

Half awake after being up at 4:30 am this morning to get to work.  My deep respect to everyone who is up and en route to work at this hour.

I'm currently sitting at a cafeteria table that is smudged with greasy fingerprints, but was the cleanest of the lot. I've just finished something that resembles macaroni and cheese. 

I'm thinking about how I will always join with the people who don't fit in. It's not a defiant teenager thing- it's just something that I picked up while growing up:  People who are left out or rejected from society for reasons of language, disability, looks, job, lifestyle, weight, religion and lack there of, speech impediment, skin condition, social ineptness, gender expression, point on the Autism Spectrum, family, gait of walking, or any other number of reasons under the sun will always be in my little army. They are the people you can learn the most from. They are the people who have insight to shit that will blow your mind open.

I get all warm and gushy when I think of how the one thing I can be certain of with my friends is that - no matter how different they are from each other- they will always accept each other on a certain level. I like and value this about my friends. Somehow we all know what it is like to be outside of things- even if it is for very different reasons. It's nice to know that no matter who I introduce a new friend to, I will be introducing them to a home that will accept them in their entirety and just as they are upon introduction.

I love them. 

My friends.

I love my friends. 

Such an obvious thing to say, but something worth saying every day. 



be well; be loved,

k.


(image: via whitewit.ch tumblr. It may or may not be from The Windsor Magazine, 1902)

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Gentlemen, Turn Out Your Pockets; Ladies, Empty Your Purses: Three Bits of Life as of Late

I.

Today, this September 7th of 2016, was part of something larger that I can't quite articulate.  Do you ever have something that, for years, you feel you'll never be able to let go of and then, one day, while multitasking, you simply let it all fall to the floor and wash away with the rain?

I'm being too sloppily poetic, here.

Let me just say that an event from almost four years ago has been finally put to rest in its understanding and function.  The casket is closed, and the spirits have been raised.

It feels good yet strangely uneventful.

II.

Here's what I know is true as of late. And by late, here, I mean the better part of this entire year thus far:


If you are a person who puts too much stock in riding the coattails of another
If you are a person who needs to be around someone all of the time
If you are a person who is perpetually trying to "save" the nearest shit show you call a friend (or a date, as the case may be)
If you are abusive or unpredictable in the bad way


I will more than likely not be interested in being around you
or investing in a friendship with you.

It is boring.
It is codependent.
It is invasive.
It is utterly uninteresting.


[I am in love with being in this space.  Thank you to people like TS Madison and a duo who will remain nameless who know what it's like to work to become who you are in life - or to even get the chance to.]

III.

As an important aside:

Neurodiversity is a thing, folks.

Just because *you* don't mind applause and small talk doesn't mean that everyone is into it.  Just because you can go on trips with groups of people and want to be around them from sun up until sun down doesn't mean everyone can.  Just because you think someone is rude or too direct doesn't mean that what they're saying isn't 100% on point.

[Also: If people need alone time or a quiet room and you take that personally, you're just a neurotypical asshole.]


be well; be loved,



k.

P.S. I still can't get over how bizarre but interesting but wonderful life is.  I like that my life is one that involves one of my best friends being witness to a living puppet possibly telling me off.  (Fair enough, I say.)

(image via amortentia tumblr)
(title: a quote from the movie Clue)

Saturday, August 20, 2016

We'll Never Be Those Kids Again



Today was set aside for total indulgence.

Productivity, yes, but indulgent productivity.

The day is not over.

In fact, the night has just begun.

(pause)

This afternoon, in the sun, I recalled why and how music is so important to me and how it can create the perfect moments:

Frank Ocean's new album;  the sun on my legs.


k.

(Image: Felix Gonzalez-Torres, “Untitled”, 1992/1993, Print on paper, endless copies 8 in. at ideal height x 48 ¼ x 33 ¼ in. (original paper size) via Sunwouldshine Tumblr)
(title: lyrics from the song Ivy by Frank Ocean)

Monday, August 15, 2016

Bodies That Live

Taking a break from studying.

Here's the thing:  This course has taught me that I am a smart ass armchair scientist. Reading all of these studies makes me suspicious of things they didn't control for in order to factor out.  For example, I just finished reading three studies having to do with menopause where cis women were studied longitudinally to see if menopause and its supposed symptoms were universal.  Turns out, it's not, and varies quite a bit both from what societal myths say and among ethnic and cultural groups.  So, for an example, Japanese American women in the study reported the lowest rate of hot flashes during pre, early peri, late peri and post menopause points in life.  In the same study, Caucasian women reported the highest rate of irritability across all four of the points studied.  And when I saw this, I was like, well, yeah, probably because the majority of cis white women have been around heterosexual cis white men most of their lives since birth and most of those dudes are annoying as fuck: No surprise after 44-55 years of that shit they have had it.

Needless to say: Scientific study is not exactly my field, but I'm enjoying all that I am learning nonetheless. It's been a challenge- and an exciting one- to back up and learn (or relearn or unlearn as the case may be) all of the information about hormones and bodies and cells and intersexuality and all of these things that start to get at the root of the human body and systems of oppression all within a medical industrial complex built in a gross and shit-tastic capitalist system.

That's all I've got for right now. I need to get back to these readings. It's been a fulfilling and long day.  It feels good to be loved and supported: By magic, by knowledge, by loved ones, and by the nighttime that is about to fall upon us.

sweet dreams and sweet studies: whatever and of whomever they may be.


k.

(image: whitewit.ch tumblr)


Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Alchemy at its Best

Things have been witchy-er than usual as of late.  There has been the correct balance of solitude, study, adventure, and energies of all sorts.  Incense and candles. Premonition and dreams.

I've been meditating on magick as of late.   There is a passage in the book that I am currently reading, one that is written by a neurosurgeon, that has to do with the magick of connection. The passage describes the moment when you cross paths with a stranger, look into their eyes, and momentarily connect.  See into each other.   How that split moment is something very different than vacant eyes meeting at the same time.  It is different than the overplayed narrative of love at first sight.  It describes, simply, the moments in life when you and another person catch a glimpse of each other's existence in a way that stops everything else.  It could be in an elevator. It could be walking by each other on our ways to somewhere else.  But feeling is different from a vacancy or preoccupation.  It is a type of joint, momentary presence.

In any case, I've been thinking on this for a few reasons that have surfaced in my life. Mainly, fascinating ways that people have stepped into my life. So much chance is involved. Who, where, when. I think often of the importance of being open to the magick that surrounds us all.  Those invisible threads, yet again.

My recent favorite involved a stranger in make up and a tuxedo who ran his hand along my jawline without words. Who poured and lifted a glass of water to my lips without words.  Who took my hand to dance with me without words. We communicated only with body language.  Three hours later, as we were looking at each other from across the room and I went to leave, he glided past everyone to speak his first words.

Another recent favorite would be the woman who asked me what I was reading and, the next thing you know, we are having an incredible conversation about theater.  She leaves and then comes back 20 minutes later with a copy of a play that she wants me to read ~ only for us to discover a few days later that that exact play will be performed locally in a matter of weeks unbeknownst to either of us.

Like magick.

If you pay attention, it is everywhere.

It is how a loved person I have not seen in years is, by chance, in the same place I am in Philadelphia (dressed as a priest no less) and slips up behind me until I feel him, and turn around.

Magick.

Look around you.  Do the rituals you must do to be open to what surrounds you but, remember: This magick is something much larger than a slight of hand.  It is true; it is celestial. When it pulls you close, let yourself become a part of it. 


Alchemy at its best.



be well; be loved,

k.

P.S. Let me put my book of matches down for a moment and show appreciation for everyone who is off of the mainstream path.  Here I am thinking of the weirdos and artists and inventors and hustlers whom I love.  Photo from whitewit.ch tumblr

Saturday, August 6, 2016

The Cutlery of Theives; The Familiarity of Covens

Last night was black thin thigh high cable knit socks and high contrasting stilettos. It was a black tulle and mesh and silk lining skirt. It was 2 am in a wooded, secluded part along the water.  It was park bench. It was being given head (heels crossed upon a soft back lit only by the moon) while night boats glided by a few yards from our vantage point.

It was watching the water side by side- conversations of our lives, our worlds, our languages, our cultures. It was musings on magic, performance, and smoking all threaded within the unconcerned, long-time-friend-like quality that instantly occurs

when two bad kids unite for a while.


k.

(image: "Fuego por ella" Magdalena Frackowiak photographed by Daniele Cavalli for Vogue Spain February 2016via giampixxx tumblr)

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

The Halfway of Languages: The Art of Connection

It's morning. The sky is beautiful, and I am facing a wall of floor-to-ceiling windows in a cafe nowhere near the city in which I live. The music is just right. Guitars: not too country; not too folky.  Cement floors. Wooden tables. Small, bare light bulbs on thick wires strung across the room, above me.

Oatmeal and brown sugar to my left; an americano (with a dash of cinnamon) and a glass of water to my right.

I am waking up.

Thinking of the people in my life.  Thinking of something a good friend said about how being around other people who also use multiple languages somehow gives her a sense of belonging- even when the languages they use are not the ones she uses.  I understand this, somehow.  And it's strange to think about all of the people that have played a hand in me getting here- to this muti-language'd patchwork of connection.  It's awing for me to think about. I know a lot of people are brought up with multiple languages. I wasn't- minus the random scraps of my grandfather's language that was recited at birthday parties, in come-ons and in insults- so it means something to be here.  How much my life has changed.  How much people and language and culture and humor have changed it.

In any case: Back to these window panes. A bit more tracing the clouds with my eyes is due before I start my day.



Be well; be loved; be open: What is confining you may be yourself.



k.


(image: Poldi, 1914, Egon Schiele via giampixx tumblr)

Monday, July 18, 2016

Cross Cultural Discussion of Eyebrow Make Up Application, or, The Chills Down My Spine

Eyes tired from adventure and necessity.

The past week has been strangers and friends and strangers you meet, on purpose, at night.

I haven't been writing much.

Sometimes the stories I live are so vast and bizarre that even I have a hard time believing them.

But in their truth, they take time to dissolve, digest, understand, enjoy.

This time around they involve magicians and mimes and Draculas and gay organists (redundant) and education administrators and no less than five languages and dancing with a person in a tuxedo whose name I do not know and speeding to get to a destination by 2 AM and beautiful views of the city and bites upon my neck (not the kind that leave gross marks) and a charming doppelgänger of Mikhail Baryshnikov who drinks apple-tinis and orders them as if he is stating a fact. 

Life is huge. 

On multiple levels and for a thousand reasons political and enjoyable: 


Step outside of what you know.  



be well; be loved,


k.


(image: Mikhail Baryshnikov)


Monday, July 4, 2016

One Hand Loves the Other

The sun is glaring through my window, illuminating me and the pile of note cards that surround me with things like ANDROGEN INSENSITIVITY SYNDROME and BIPOTENTIAL STRUCTURES PRESENT AT EACH STAGE scribbled across them. My elbow rests on a page from the American Journal of Human Biology to reach my keyboard.

I'm taking a break from studying to write...something...and to take care of the cherry pits that are scattered around my books and cup of coffee upon the table.

These days have been so happy.
Fulfilled.
Strange.
Connected and solitary all at once.

Beautiful.


The family I have created is a strong one.

The visions that I have are strong ones.

Let's get to all of it.


(Imagine the most emotion pulling film score, here. Full of trumpets and violins; crescendos and elation.)


Back to the books and The Case of the Missing Androgen Receptor,


k.

Listen to An Echo a Stain.

(title credit: A lyric from Bjork's song Unison, off the album Verpertine)
(image: I fucked up, here. It's from Tumblr. I'm not sure where it's from, but upon investigating, it looks like it originates from Stephane Rolland Haute Couture)

Sunday, May 29, 2016

Conversations of Ghosts and the Like: How to Grieve a Person Who Saw the Truth


I. This Morning: Logistical

Diving down my check list for the day.  I've had too concentrated of caffeine, but it's alright. The temperature is just right (chilly; not too cold) for sweatshirts and typing; fingers dry from page turning; thirst quenched with water.

These next two months will be busy ones. Good busy. Ready busy. Growing busy. Amazing busy.

II. Three Days Ago: Observation

Early morning cleavage is both appreciated and disturbing.  The other morning I was in a ritzy part of town and saw a well cleave'd woman leaving a Starbucks stand in the local grocery.  It wasn't quite 8 am. I had respect for the keyhole shirt she was wearing and the conjuring of sex, pre-8am.  I reserve a particular depth of want for morning sex, as it is indeed one of my favorites, although I had never considered it in flip-flops slapping against the tiles of a supermarket floor.


III. Today: The Taste of Last Night's Conversation

I have been thinking of energy from one's fingertips as of late. 

Last night was spent sliding my hands down and across the neck, throat, chest, arms and hands of a person I am incredibly attracted to. It was enjoyable to play with feelings associated with sex without kissing or having any kind of typical or blatant sexual contact. Enjoyable to feel the warmth. The movement of energy.  It puts you in a trance-like state to some extent: That teetering between the push pulls of battling desires.


be well; be loved,

k.

(image: by Hollis Frampton, A Visitation of Insomnia, 1970 via isidoreblog tumblr)

Wednesday, May 25, 2016

In Between Time



Death is a weird one.

In the past number of years, most of the deaths in my immediate life have all come via a phone call while I am at the library. 

That period of time between when you find out about a death in a public realm, and when you have arrived to a private realm (home and the like) and are finally able to let go, is a strange one.

I'm writing to you now from within that period of time.

Here I am, sitting at my desk in the library, having just received word about 30 minutes ago.

What do you do?

I've downshifted my work to be taken from that labeled more "MINDLESS" than other work. 

I've kept my back to the door as I work, my eyes tearing up. Welling and stinging, but not quite ready to come out. 

There is a shock component that always exists in this period of time.

Instead, a constant and perpetual wetting of the eyes.  Like allergies minus the itchiness. A lump in my throat. Heat upon my cheeks because they are warming to push the tears out.

That last time I saw her. 

Not the emails we have been writing but that last time I saw her.

She knew.

She saw what I had only hoped that someone would. 

(Times two, really.

Times a million.)

The depth of her gaze.

She knew.

And I could feel her heart go out to me.

I felt that.

A rarity in all that surrounded us that evening.

I can only imagine how it has been. 

The thirty some years past losing the love of your life.

But I remember your gentleness. 

How it was wrapped in directness. 

And I take that with me.

Because you are who I got that from.

And now

I just need

to make my way home.




k.

(image:  Kathy Jones via workman tumblr)

Monday, May 23, 2016

Succulent Innocence

(a haiku written while caught in daydreams)



seeing you i see
fingers dripping with honey
rising from the ground







 (image: ivo stoyanov via Art Propelled Tumblr)

Saturday, May 21, 2016

Trace Yourself Upon Me: Imagination vs Delusion During the Full Blue Moon

We sat and drank, each with a separate past locked up in him, and fate's alarm clocks set at unrelated futures-- 

        --a partial sentence taken from Pnin, by Vladimir Nabokov


I have eyeliner stripes on my right, outer thigh because I wasn't wearing pants while I was doing my make up tonight.  Now that I am home and, again, I do not have pants on, they are revealed: The hidden tiger of my odd artistry.

I have been appreciating the presence and absence of someone as of late.

Let me tell you what I love about being given the space and time and reason to unravel:

I work harder.

I think more clearly.

I cum harder.

I hustle more.

I miss more deeply.

I love more widely.

I feel gentle towards that which, in usual circumstances, makes me sad.

There is a hope and humor in the children that are in my life, and that matters.




Pretend that it is intentional, no matter if it is.
 
Lie to me and let me believe that the plan is to spread me out:

A map of a thousand galaxies to kiss and evaluate.

Surely everything will be illuminated underneath this simple, stoic full moon that is upon us.

Let the only shadow cast upon me

be the eclipse of your body passing mine.


k.


(Image: Optical Exercise I, Man Ray)

Thursday, May 19, 2016

I Can't Help My Mind From Going There




 I.

Our recent conversations about dreams:  How one cannot control how the mind works, and, should we really spend much time and energy into trying to interpret them?

I suppose not.

Mine tend to be fairly blatant.

Not in their details, but in their desires.

Those dreams that can wake you soaking in both fear or desire.

Sometimes both.

II.

Heard your boyfriend was away this weekend: Wanna meet at my place?

It was raining tonight. Finally.

I declined the offer of the ride home so that I could walk. In the dark. As fast as I wanted. As slow as I wanted.

I wanted to feel my thighs touch each other. Rub up against each other. In the rain. While I walked fast. Slow. Became warm. But could still feel the sting of the cold night air.

We could be caught

My thighs pushing against each other while I'm thinking of you touching that secret inside corner of my inner thigh while rain poured down on my face, my lips, my clothes.

Cars went by, their headlights blaring.  An occasional horn to get my attention. I ignored all of them. I didn't want to be saved. I didn't want to be interrupted. I just wanted to walk. Quickly.  Hard steps on the pavement.

We're both convicted criminals of thought

I have to take a minute from you.

Not because I don't like you.

But because I do.

When I lay in bed I touch myself and I think of you

There is more to this.


And I intend on riding it out.



Be well; be loved,


k.


(Title and italicized words thank you to  this song, which I would like you to go listen to.  Right now.)
(image source:  via melisica dot com)

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Bus Yodas and Other Sources of Wisdom


Yesterday was one of those days where you come home early from work and end up laying on your bedroom floor, in a pile of unexplained rice, crying to a John Legend song that happened to pop up in your Spotify station.

(I really need to remember to keep that shit to 100% pop.  R&B will have you in love, utterly heart broken, and getting your grind on all within the span of 12 minutes.)

Z unknowingly saved the day, yet again, with one of his hilarious descriptions of life and his adventures within it. Yet again, I can't express how important friends who are former significant exs are to have in your life. If anything, they support you when the few exes you aren’t on good terms with resurface.  Best quote from that conversation would be when he said, in dealing with them, "You have to be able to see the world from the perspective of a baby."

In other news, I just finished the book …y no se lo trigó la tierra…and the Earth Did Not Devour Him by Tomás Rivera. Worth a read. Goes into the experiences of migrant workers of the 40s and 50s, although it was published in 1971.

It’s cool to have both of the languages right there (the book is first in Spanish, then the back half of the book is the English version) so you can flip back and forth and see the differences in implication/meaning/translation. Translation will always amaze me: What’s missing; what’s added. What’s explained in one version; what’s left unexplained in another.
(pause)

In any case: Things are good.

For now, I'll leave you with this quote from a conversation I overhead the other morning as I embarked on an hour bus ride to the south end that pretty much sums things up everything as of late:


"I'd rather be real and in a hot spot than superficial and in the zone."




be well; be loved,

k.

(image via unglaubwuerdig tumblr)


Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Citrus Kisses, or, How Your Glasses Sliding Down Your Nose as You Look at Me Will Always Be Entirely Charming

It's a quarter to midnight, and I am eating mandarin oranges out of a tin can.  Growing up, they always felt like such an exquisite and rare dessert. Of course, that may have been because we were always hiding from our father growing up, and home wasn't exactly a meal spot, let alone a dessert bar, but still: Opening that tin can felt like I was unveiling orange jewels from a golden case.
Why is it that most mandarin orange cans are gold instead of the usual silver tin, anyway?

It's been a long day:  Good, productive, multi-directional, but good.

A sweet someone informed me that today was the queen's 90th birthday.  I informed this sweet person that it was the season 8 finale of Rupaul's Drag Race.  A celebration of queens, all around. It is nice to have this atypical cultural exchange.

Earlier today, I talked with Z for quite a while. We laughed about the people we ask for life advice from being people who exist more or less entirely outside of life. Like asking for stock investment advice from the Baron in the Trees or something. It's laughable and amazing all at once.  I am proud of the people who are in my life.

(pause)

I've been happy in life as of late. Content. Productive. Excited for what I am building. Who knew that life could be so fun, even when it's tiring?

Note to self: It feels good to have positive people in my life. People who are intelligent and wise, loving and funny, creative and a step or five outside of the anticipated trajectory.

And so we travel, together.



For now, to bed with me: Another day is about to arrive. 


be well; be loved,

k.
(image via 130186 tumblr)

Thursday, May 12, 2016

Baby, Don't Get it Twisted: You Were Just Another on a Hit List

When I walked out of the room, the grin still smeared across my face.

Pt I.

I know you think it's wrong.

I know you don't like the way the sun on my back bothers me in the best of ways.

It bothers me well.

It's silly for you to be jealous of the sun.

It was silly for you to be jealous of everything and always.


Pt III (IV?).

Once I realized that you didn't believe me, I helped you along by showing you the inverse of that which sought to hold you.

Everything has a light and a dark side.

People are no exception.

Pt XII.

By the end, I ate dessert off of the back of your torment. 

Decedent slices of marble cheesecake with wine while you told me your boring stories of coworkers giving you the snub. Boring because you would get so angry and blaming about it. How could they not want you in their circle?

Why did you care?

So anti-establishment, but there you were scooting your dirty ass around the carpet like an ashamed dog.

[Stop blaming people and begin to own yourself. The only people who are incredible on their knees are the ones who stand upright and tall in their lives. The only ones with an appetite to serve deep enough, insatiable enough, are the ones who serve themselves respect, first.]

The table that was your back would shake as I ate my dessert.

The arching of your back would shift my plate

Teeter my wine glass:

What a pity.

How I concentrated on sugar, and the way it made my brain shake, in order to drown out your words blaming

your mother
your father
your sister
your boss
your friends (who you took turns distrusting)


the world.


(pause)

Pt May 11, 2016.

Now?

The light shines every day for me.

My back is warm

my lips are plump

with an ever ready and true smile

that widens them.





Es un(a) pícar(a) capaz de lo que sea.




Didn't they tell you I was a savage?

Fuck your white horse and a carriage

k.


 (title and italicized words from Rihanna's Needed Me)

(image: Take My Love and Wear It by Lotus Carroll via Lotus Carroll Flickr)

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

The Sweetness of Symmetry; The Successful Sidestepping of Poisonings

This morning started with accidental weak coffee and an intentionally stale doughnut. I did a do-over with the coffee but when I bit into the doughnut that I had brought home with me from work yesterday in my bag, I tasted and realized that a bottle of cologne must have leaked in my bag.

So here I am, just before 8:30 in the morning, drinking strong coffee in an attempt to rinse the flavor of a cake doughnut soaked in bergamot with undertones of possibly patchouli from my mouth.

Good morning.


The past few days have proved to be both inspiring and challenging.

Let me pull over and talk about, historically and in the past, being the stone emotional butch in a disproportionate number of my friendships and relationships. Stone emotional butch happens when people perceive you as strong and, so relieved to have finally found such a strong person who can obviously handle the knocks of life, will want to unload - in an unending and unreciprocated manner - the depths of their sadnesses, difficulties, relationships with their families/wives/workplaces/bosses onto you because they know you can handle it. This is also, at times, mixed with a somewhat never ending desire, in that child like way, to forever feel that they are the center of said mommy/daddy's world.

It's a kind of West End Girl Syndrome. You are perceived as being built for them.  For this very purpose.  You can handle it.

[We've got no future, we've got no past
Here today, built to last
In every city, in every nation
From Lake Geneva to the Finland station
(How far have you been?)]

(pause)

I don't buy into it much these days/years.

It's fine that I am perceived as strong. I am strong. That's a point of pride, I suppose.  That I'm not a big baby padding around. But I also threw the dynamic of being everyone's emotional daddy and mommy out a while back.

There have been quite a few tantrums, of course. People having melt downs because they don't know how to handle it when I set limits to how much of their demands or emotional boiling-overs I feel good about showing up for. How much of their brattiness or expectations of me as a source of support and attention when what they offer me in return is, well, more of the same brattiness and expectation. It's just not something I'm into these years. And so, situations either have to change, or they have to be faded out.

All in all, it feels good. It has felt good over the past, I'd say four years or so, to be sweeping off the proverbial front porch to my home.   To make room for and cultivate the loving vines that surround me. (I've always pictured the people I'm thinking about as plants.  Big, thick, green, lush plants that intertwine with each other and surround me.  Plants that are seemingly delicate, yet, together and in their fed mass, can take down entire buildings.)

That's all for today.  Just thinking on this as I clear the last bit of that pastry mishap from my palate while the doughnut with one bite missing remains unfinished on my plate, acting as an air freshener.



Be well; be loved; be loved well.


Be conscious of what you choose to keep and what is better left alone after you get a taste for it.


k.

(image: Esther Quek)


Friday, May 6, 2016

Follow Me Into the Unknown (The Love of Family)


 I also knew that, in spite of everything, I had to protect her.
                                       
                                                --from Snow by Roberto Bolaño


The beauty of family is that, even when they are pissed at you or you are pissed at them, they are still there to hold you. Literally; figuratively. Chosen family is no different, although there are those who believe it is. Sometimes, people who have the privilege of family of origin miss the most obvious fact:  If one must choose their family, there is no point in settling for a wilted offering of family that doesn't show up for each other. Which is to say: A charity offer of 'family' isn't something I'm interested in.  It reminds me of the wealthy ladies that would try and donate their half used lipsticks to the domestic violence shelter I used to manage.  When we would say "no thanks", they seemed appalled: How dare survivors of domestic violence not happily accept their gross-ass, half slobbered-on, reeking-of-perfume designer lipsticks, right?

Fuck off.

Everyone deserves and has standards and dignity, and that doesn't lower based on how people who should have loved them have treated them.  If you wouldn't accept something, yourself, stop and think about why it is you would offer it to other people.

(pause)

The past few days have been beautiful and inspiring. Speaking of chosen family, I have been hanging out with a loved one as we inspire/encourage/support each other in some pretty epic and exciting stuff. (Scary, but exciting!).  I love the conversations we are able to have.  I love the nerdy and loving space we have created over the years. One thing I love about this level of family is that you can be gross and silly and funny and ridiculous and talk about, well, pretty much anything.  From dripping menstrual blood on the bathroom tile to the inherent sexiness of people with state jobs.

Tonight we will be carrying out a plan that has been in the making for a while, now. It's going to change some things. Move some things. Put some things into action.

I'm excited, and I'm ready.

Here's to family you build with.

With them, you are unstoppable.

Right as rain, and all of the other sayings, here.

Now let's get to it.



Love,


k.


P.S. A toast to the brief Zeb, Jodi and me FaceTime extravaganza.  Same cloth. Same love.

 (image: Ming Xi as photographed in Vogue China, September 2012 via Pivovaroward Tumblr)

Wednesday, May 4, 2016

Significance and Steamed Windows



Your words, I admit, were kind. Nevertheless, I fear that you did not give sufficient thought to what you were saying. And even less to what I was saying. You should always listen carefully, Max, to what women say while they're being fucked. If they don't speak, fine, there's nothing to listen to, and you'll probably have nothing to think about, but if they do, even if it's only a murmur, listen to their words and think about them, think about their meanings, think about what they express and leave unexpressed, try to understand what it is they really signify. 

--from Murdering Whores by Roberto Bolaño


It's roughly 10:25 am, and I am laying on a bed holding a mug of coffee steady in between my knees (at 90 degree angles, on their sides) as I type.  Fiction has been good to me lately.  Reality, perhaps more so.

There are a number of plots and plans that I have simmering on the proverbial stove, and the mixture and direction of their scents seem to be in profound agreement as of late. Step by step and with an eye on everything at once can both sharpen the senses as well as leave you inspired to bring on more to the mix.  Patience and a steady eye, however, seems to be the winning combination.

These days I am excited by the balance of the step by step plan: The satisfaction involved in putting a solid, inked line through a task written down on a To Do list.  Watching the ink spread into the paper makes me more attentive to the air that hovers just above and upon the nape of my neck. The patterned click clop click of heels making their unquestioned way across academic tile (we all know that corporate has long since switched out to be a disappointing industrial grade carpet).

I will see you soon, and with measured steps.



k.

(image: Richard Serra, To Lift, 1967.)

Sunday, May 1, 2016

Left Cocoon: The Emergence of New

This weekend I received a very beautiful sentiment (compliment?) from someone who has been in my life, in one form or another, for over ten years.

He told me that a particular experience in our relationship to each other had made a huge impact on him.  He told me that at a point in time when he made some odd/not so great decisions in his life, I had let let him know that love is big enough to have room for messiness.  And then I acted on that. While the majority of the people in his life were shaming him, blaming him, politicizing every misstep he had taken, that I had held onto him without throwing a shame fest at him.  Given some of the specifics of what the situation was, I had told him more or less that I loved him and that, when he felt he had something different/better to offer, to be in touch with me.  Which he was, every year, roughly.  Until about three years ago when he, indeed, had something very different to offer.

And we have been connected, again and more consistently, ever since that time.

And so, there we were, yesterday morning, sitting in the sun just after 10 in the morning, telling each other what we have meant to each other over the years. Talking about what our connections are and always have been. Our mutual inspiration to/for/on each other. The love of the complexity of each others mind.

He said something to the extent that the experience with me, in contrast to what he had been experiencing at that time from other sources, made him realize and wonder when shaming someone is ever the answer to something.

I thought about that.

I think he's right.

It never is the answer to something, really.

How strange and beautiful that I can glean lesson from an insight someone gained as a product of my love. It makes me feel good. Proud? Humbled.

[I learned a lot about not bullying by being and hanging out with people who have been bullied in their homes; in the society at large.

Sometimes the judgey, shame-y thing seems so steeped in privilege. The holier than thou politic-os that seem more invested in patting themselves and each other on the back for their ideas, than in doing any real bridging of experiences and realities. Because to do so means that you *will* be wrong. You *will* "look ignorant". You *will* not have the answer.  But these are the things revolutions are made out of.  I remember Matthew talking with me about this.  About how bits of revolution exists within these types of struggles.  That these struggles *are* the revolution. It exists and builds within these types of reachings, collaborations, coalitions, and bridges.]

Love is, indeed, a transformative force.

For everyone involved in creating, tending to, and maintaining it.

Keep doing it (Love).


be well; be loved,


k.


(image via misanthropicmessiah tumblr)

Sunday, April 24, 2016

Hallowed By Thy Name: The Evoked Thirst at the Mention of a Book Gutter


The rain came this morning.

I am currently hiding out in an empty room that, although lined with copious amounts of windows, is dimly lit due to the weather outside.

I've been reading a book that, at root, has to do with magic and quantum physics. The intersection of science and the occult and life and impact. Information about engineers and scientists and philosophers and inventors and electrical geniuses (or genii, if you really want to use that word) who all say similar things about the fields that connect us all and our ability to impact and/or read them. It's fascinating stuff and, without question, it is exactly what I need to be reading at present.

I'm keeping up with my readings for class. This additional reading just offers me the type of necessary dessert to maintain my quickened pace of excitement for life at this moment.



Be well; be loved,

k.

(image: Paul Huf: Zadkine’s Garden, Paris 1947 via belazela tumblr)

Friday, April 22, 2016

Pouring Water Upon Ice Cubes: The Elegence of Being

I am currently willingly stuck in the crevice between the wall and the mattress of my bed. My shirt has lifted up just a bit to expose my lower back, and I am enjoying the feeling of the wall's coolness against my skin.

The window in my bedroom is open about a foot, and the birds that tend to perform high wire feats upon the telephone and electrical lines outside of my window are busy chatting and investing their songs and chirps into the local dialog. The sun is out but hidden by some clouds at the moment. The air feels crisp and pepperminty on my feet, that are also sticking out from the crevice between the wall and the mattress of my bed, and that are closest to the window.

Things feel so good and right at present. Nourishment in the form of good food, good company, good conversation, good books, good films, good ideas, ...dare I say good news? Good news.

I've been having the time I need to be able to write. It's important to me. This writing that I'm working on. There's so much more of a process before one gets to writing or typing, as the case may be. I think only writers understand that.  I'm thinking back to when Alison Bechdel was here months ago, and now thinking of words that Jacqueline Woodson echoed when she was here, recently:  That writers are lovable maniacs to live with and be around.  That they need copious amounts of alone time. That one moment they will be out and about and cheering and chatting, and the next minute, they will have disappeared into the closest shadow to write something down, or to simply go think.

The balance of these things has been sorted out for now. Social with solitary. Wandering with directed. Uncertainty mixed with confidence.

For now, I'll just continue drinking down the last bit of this coffee from within the crevice of this bed and think about what's to come.

Then, as most writers must, I'll jimmy myself out of this crevice to run a brush through my hair and get myself to work on time.


Be well; be loved,


k.
(image via chromatic-porn Tumblr)

Thursday, April 21, 2016

The Safe Villian of Secrecy

There is an author that I am reading who describes the feeling of loss, a particular loss, as an airless rectangle that rests between your sternum  and spine. The airlessness within this sharp rectangle is much like the inside an elevator with its motionless air. 

I've been thinking about the description today.  (It's Francisco Goldman. I would type out the description, but you should just read the book.  So that you know, as exactly as you can, what is inside the rectangle that he is describing.)

(pause)

What I know is that people don't like to talk about unpretty things. And that is why I don't share a ton about my life up until now.  I sense it. The shift in the air that happens when someone asks me about my family and I answer them honestly.

The people who have stories like mine become the holder of other people's stories.

Because we are, of course, the story keepers:  The people who do not flinch at other people's stories and, thus, we can both listen to and keep them.

I know and see the value in that.  I know and see the value in myself and in people like me. 

It is not our only function.  But you would be amazed at how many people will pour out everything they ever wished to have held as if, in fact, it is.

(pause)

Let me talk with you about secrecy vs. privacy.

Secrecy is the omitting of truths. The blurring of stories. The erasure of communicated pillars of one's life.

Privacy is discreet and opaque, but open about that fact.

There are reasons to be private.

There aren't many good reasons to be secretive.

Think about how you are and with whom and for what reasons or ends.

(pause)

I'm thinking of quite a bit tonight.  It was nice that I ran into a stranger who shared a brief conversation about books and we traded recommendations of recent reads.  He was so outside of my world and who I hang out with (think: self help business major) that I will take the recommendations seriously. The two books are on their way to me from the library system as I type this. It may be silly, but chance and momentarily frank interactions with people you will more than likely never see again tend to be the kind I pay attention to.  Other worlds sending ripples to push you towards something you need to know.

In any case, that's what I have for you tonight.

I felt really shy today.  Too much attention*. There are days that I find it upsetting to discover that I am not invisible. Today is one of those days.




Be well; be loved; find your meaning in what surrounds you in a larger sense, and keep paying attention to all that it includes.
 
-k.


 (image: Alexander Arnild Peitersen via untrustyou tumblr)

[*=  "I feel like I've commented on your lip color before, but it's on point again tonight." -- stranger 1

"She's very compliment-able! She's reading! It's not very often that I see people reading in the Chipotle line." --stranger 2 in response to stranger 1

"I can't help but to be curious about you..." -- stranger 3]

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Cool Cotton on Warm Skin

At last: The weather where everyone is out in the streets until at least 1 am.

Now, I know for cities like New York and the like, this is nothing. But for here:

it is something.

Spaghetti straps and sundresses, flip flops and sunglasses, pressed shorts and tight t-shirts. Mandatory lemonades, or alcoholic drinks made to look like lemonade, all around: red and white twisted stripe straws sticking out of them like fat, thirsty invitations.

Tonight, like many nights, consisted of drag queens, friends, humor and street harassment. It ended with ice cream and closing out one of those restaurant bars that closes early.  Walking through the streets I saw a roughly 50 year old man riding a skateboard in the middle of the street and HE WAS FUCKING GOOD AT CONTROLLING THE BOARD.

I shouldn't be surprised. I was. It ruled. The traffic had to momentarily fuck off.

While waiting for the bus, some guy started trying to hit on me in Spanish so I decided to pretend I didn't understand and just ignore him.  That's when he pulled out an English phrase to say as sexily as he could. He took a few steps closer to me and said..."Oye, mi amor...big pussy."

Big pussy.

That was his come on line.

At that point I turned to him and started speaking to him in Spanish asking him if he had sisters and when he said yes, he had four, I asked him if he'd be cool with some dude talking to one of his sisters like that. Then I lightened it up and started laughing and asked him if he'd tell me a story about when he was a little kid. (My recent tactic for street harassment is confusing the fuck out of people by turning the harassment into an interview about their lives. So far, it has worked.)

All in all, it was a summer day and a summer night. The kind you can feel all over your skin. The kind that makes you want to bare your shoulders and lotion your legs.

Things feel so good as of late.

A friend told me recently that he believes I get crushes on the most complicated people in the world.  He is most certainly right.

But what of it?

There is nothing better than a complex mind.



be well; be loved,


k.

P.S. You should listen to this old song off of Shhh on repeat: Here.  The lyrics, alone, are amazing. Here the are:

A phonebox rendezvous, don't whisper a word
Half a million by Monday
Or Roger Waters gets it
My little baby, they cut off his ear
Half a million by Tuesday, then
Don't whisper a word
Shhh

(image: from la-flama tumblr)

Sunday, April 17, 2016

The Communication of Channels

He told me that he didn't believe Aura would want to see me going around all of the time in a black mourning suit.  Gesturing at the photographs of Aura all over the apartment now, the tailor said, I can see from her eyes and her smile that your wife was full of life, Francisco, and I know she wouldn't want you to drag yourself down like that, showing such a heavy sadness to the world. Can I recommend a charcoal-gray wool? It's dignified, but it has some lightness to it. And he opened his book of fabric samples.

                -From Say Her Name by Francisco Goldman



Facts, at times, surface in my dreams.

It would have been Megan's birthday a few days ago.

My dreams remind me of seasons I would prefer, at times and in some ways, to forget.

It's not a betrayal; It is a reminder of honesty.

Of lack

of loss

and of love.

(pause)

I've been beginning and completing things today and this evening, as need be. A check list existence of necessary movement.

Although lately I feel like someone getting a running start on a bullet they know will be shot at them 25 seconds in the future, I still feel productive:

My success tentative, but momentarily existent nonetheless.

For now,  I have given up on anything too intricate and laced to future. I have been enjoying the present day that has loose ribbons tied to an untrustworthy bird that has a sign strapped around its little neck that reads "FUTURE BOUND".

It feels better this way. More present. More doable. It's no surprise that I am able to get things done a bit easier since this has shifted.

In other news:

I've been funnily accepting the warm and cool tones that have been surrounding me.  The golds, the greens, the blues. Allow the crystal slipper'ed foot of her majesty the sun to click the sidewalk, and all one can see is her gold. How she somehow manages to illuminate the blades of grass until your eyes water, and electrify the sky until you are certain you are staring at the sparkled swirling dance of the most clear and churning ocean.

May we all find what fits, and get lost in the depths of it all as we do.


Be well; be loved,

k.

(image: Miles Van Rensselaer via cosmicclusters tumblr)

Friday, April 15, 2016

The Crush of Poems

My mind is honey and marbles thinking of you
A drunken sailor's crush
even though
this sailor doesn't drink.

Feeling silly
when I see a lone daffodil
growing next to the road
and think of you.

When our cheeks touch while we hug
I don't know what to do
so I look immediately
to the ground
when I let go of you.

I want to tell you
I want to hold you
for as long as you want
if you'll let me.

(image: Fred Cuming via ArtPropelled tumblr)

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

What is it That You See?, or, Thick Skin and the West End Girl

I.

In elementary school, we had a project having to do with the five senses.  We made a mobile that included an eye, an ear, a hand, a nose, and a tongue.  We were given glue to spread on the tongue, and a plastic cylinder shaker of sprinkles - the type of sprinkles typically used on sugar cookies. They were rainbow and stuck to the tongue to visually emphasize the sense of taste.

I can still picture that tongue and its little, tiny, rainbow balls hanging from its edges. I spent so many hours looking at it. I remember, as a child, looking at it and wondering if I would die if I ate the sprinkles if I needed to in a pinch.

In a pinch.





What I remember about growing up is the hunger.

It wasn't economic class that was starving us.



II.

I've been thinking a lot about class differences lately.

Thinking, gently, about neighborhoods I recognize in a way that a lot of the people who surround me, these days, don't.  Neighborhoods that have nice-to-very-nice cars parked outside of black and grayed houses that were once white. Houses with broken steps and hanging gutters; ripped screened porches and makeshift mailboxes.

These days, as all days, there are too many people with money telling poor and working class people that they talk loud or swear too much.

III.

It's so much more than that. More than class differences and attitudes that I'm thinking of. It includes violence and racism and murder-by-the-police and gentrification.  I've been thinking about Alex Nieto and how he was shot at 59 times by the police while he sat eating a burrito in a park.  A park in a neighborhood he grew up in, and his parents grew up in.  And then two techies walking their dogs feel scared of him and read the (licensed and for his job he was on his way to) taser he had in its holster as a gun and call 911.

It's also about shit like people using the website nextdoor dot com to basically start doing their own vigilante (in the racial profiling shitty ass meaning of the term) policing and reporting sightings to other neighbors of "suspicious people" (commonly people who were living in the neighborhood for years and generations before the people clicking away about said "suspiciousness") and these reports ending up in things like what happened to Alex.

IV.


The other morning the bus driver, a woman of about 50 years of age who was from Michigan, was chatting with a passenger, another woman, who was sitting close by. It was a lengthy ride.  The conversation was intimate. I started typing out the dialog as it happened. There was something about it that was so familiar. So needed:

People don't really drive sticks anymore. But back then, you had to learn. If you learned how to drive that, you could drive anything. 
If it snows like it does in Michigan, I mean,...we always had something with four wheel drive.  

We were together for 30 years. 

We have three kids and eight grandkids. But I never married him. 

And then it was time to go.  

So I started over. 

Bought a car...everything.   

That's why the Mustang is kind of sentimental: 

I bought it myself. 


V.


There is a lot going on these days.  It may feel hard, sometimes, to know where and how to be most effective.  Don't stop. Don't give up.  Don't numb out.

Extend your hands when you are most afraid or unsure; keep your eyes and heart open.

It's worth it.



It matters.




be well; be loved,

k.

(Democracy Now did some updated coverage of the case having to do with Alex Nieto yesterday, in case you're interested. You can watch/listen to it here: http://www.democracynow.org/2016/4/12/death_by_gentrification_alex_nieto_killed )

(image: from Sandra Osip's work having to do with her childhood neighborhood in Detroit. Check out more of it, here.)

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

[Baby Likes To Pony]

I.

I believe that, at this point, 60% of the classes that I have taken in this program have gone over the ideas of the theater of Brecht.  I am not studying theater or theater history or German arts or anything of the sort. I see his relevance and influence.  I just had no idea how far reaching his influence was.

II.

Today I was in the women's locker room and overheard a young woman about to graduate college telling another young woman about her boyfriend asking her to her high school prom.  She had felt ambushed and odd about it. Evidently, a friend of hers had collaborated with him. Had brought her to a beach where he was hiding in a bush. The following conversation ensued between the two women in the locker room:

-He was hiding in a bush?
-Yeah.  I don't know. He should have told me he was thinking of asking me to prom to see if I was up for it. I don't know. I felt bad. I guess it was kind of expensive for him. Well, the torches were.
-The torches?
-Yeah...he had a bunch of torches lining a walk way. And flower petals. The torches were like 90 dollars.

III.

Do something to interrupt transphobia and the casual bullying of gender non-conforming people. Throwing binary notions of gender out the window actually liberates everyone. Trust me. I have seen this to be true.

IV.

Note to self:

Be careful how much and how often you compliment someone's lipstick and/or uniform.  They will eventually catch onto you.

Note to self:

Let them catch onto you.



k.

(title: I love this phrase. It serves as the name of an underwear company I am still obsessed with. Mostly their harnesses and waspies. Here's one I have been admiring as of late.)
(image: Beauties from the Crazy Horse Cabaret through the lenses of Gaincarlo Botti Paris, 1965 via deshistoiresdemode Tumblr)

Monday, April 11, 2016

The Lamb That I Lay Upon; The Lions That Surround Me

The weather is the kind that makes you not bother to close the windows, to pull the blinds closed, or to put pants on.

There is a second wave of energy that happens close to 9 o'clock at night.  Perhaps closer to 10.

There's been an electricity going through me as of late.

Of ideas, of goals, of archival footage.

I've been letting my hair down. Letting it spill around my shoulders.

I've been doing this with what I slide into these days, as well.

This morning, while sitting in class, I was at peace.

When I am sitting in class, listening to a lecture I could swear was tailored just for me, I am entirely content.

There are no people trying to cough their insecurities out onto me.

What I've noticed is that some people are so quick to try and shoot other people down. If they hear that you are in school, they will interrogate what it is that you study and try and shoot holes in your aims.  If they hear that you know languages, they will try and tell you that you'll never learn it, or that that they were going to learn it but went for a better aim, instead.

It's such an odd reaction.

To try and take the glow away from someone who is excited about something.

To try and discourage someone who is doing something to better themselves and their minds.

I am not looking to gain knowledge so that I can slap everyone in the face with it.

I simply enjoy learning.

And I do think that it is important.

I do think that learning (in life, on a shop floor, in a classroom, from your grandmother, from an overheard conversation on the bus...) matters and has an impact on how we can treat each other in this world, and how we can create changes.

I enjoy learning. 

Histories, stories, movements, struggles, languages, skills, tactics, compassion. 

I'm not aspiring towards a job that will make me want to kill myself

or kill other people.

And I know that, sometimes, the fact that I'm not aspiring towards that kind of life pisses people off.

I'm not sure why.

But it does.

The only thing I am certain of

is that I am not the one that they are mad at. 

(pause)

Be well; be loved; don't let anyone steal your glow.

The trick to becoming good at anything

is to just keep doing it.



k.

(image: via camilleas tumblr)