an origami trick
June 13, 2014

In a single omnipotent gesture, I would
fold the map of the earth onto itself,
connecting all disparate points,
the state borders lying on each other,
languishing,
all the geographic limbs –
peninsulas, archipelagos, valleys –
mingling their longitudinal longings,
latitudes drifting across
oceans, wave
by wave, from parallel to
indelible proximity,
evergreens twining roots
with palms, dawn and dusk
loosing themselves into risings,
fallings, winds
collapsing into their opposites, until
in stillness all the world
faces itself and sleeps
as a single speck,
all closeness closed,
hands clasped,
a brilliant winking spot of
singularity,
and outside of us,
nothing.

This poem is in part inspired by Sharon Olds’ “Topography,” which includes the brilliant lines, “my Kansas / burning against your Kansas your Kansas / burning against my Kansas.”  If you aren’t familiar with her work, I’d suggest starting with her 1987 collection, The Gold Cell

all things happening at once
September 19, 2012

Updates:

1. I had a couple poems published in an online journal! Check out Bare Hands Issue 11.

2. I just spent 5 days in the mountains of California with a bunch of queer girls and felt all the feelings and drank and kissed people whose names I don’t necessarily remember and screamed “SNATCH” in public areas and got no sleep and wondered the entire time why the whole world can’t be queer. You can read more about that here and here. I also met some amazing writers: Ashley (my cabin buddy), Gaby and Katrina (my cabin counselors), and many other members of the Autostraddle team who are all insanely talented and intimidating. You should read their work. If you don’t enjoy it, you should reassess your life.

3. I have finished several more books since I last did a reading list update: Sharon Olds’ “The Gold Cell”, Nabokov’s Transparent Things and Lolita, and Hemingway’s A Farewell to Arms. Nabokov is quickly becoming my favorite author. He writes insanity in a way that makes it familiar, so much so that you finish his books and think back and are shocked at your own lack of disgust. And his prose, independent of the plot content, is stunning in and of itself. I am working on a post about Transparent Things, and it will hopefully be up soon.

4. I turned 22 on Tuesday. This was accompanied by neither fanfare nor alcohol. It rained incessantly, and I got a fever from a flu shot. Outside of my friends and family, the universe took no notice of the passage of my life. This is neither surprising nor tragic, a simple daunting fact that I attempt to ameliorate by caffeine and sugar and change.

5. I am moving to France tomorrow. This is terrifying and exciting and wonderful. I will be teaching teenagers about my native language while hoping that they don’t discover that I am scared of their fluency in French slang.

6. I wrote a poem, because after everything is said and done, there is nothing else I can do:

a scar caressed

Falling asleep with
a new body is a test
of trusting and breath.

Your metal on my
metal, spoons in our dark drawer,
nestled and silenced –

I learn how not to
love. I learn how to be held,
how to say hello.

We have lips that we
teach to kiss, to speak, to close.
My bruised knees know how

to live. Do you know
their language? Show them how to
bend, your hands trembling.

In the quiet of
crowded rooms, tell me you will
touch and go, smiling.