Sunday, April 24, 2011

dreams: a recurring mysterious soul mate/guide


i don't remember much of the setting, besides the tower. i don't remember what we had set out to do or why or who was watching.

but i remember hearing "dirty mind" by The Miller Stain Limit. and i remember that the sand in my shoes somehow symbolized a feeling of dependence on you, and when i shook the sand out, everything was harder.

let me try to put these things in order:

i climbed to the top of a tower, flawlessly, effortlessly. on the top was a different plane. i was walking up the grassy slope at trout lake with someone. with each step i became more aware of the sand in my shoes. the amount may have been steadily increasing.

as i took off the shoes to shake the sand out, i realized the sand was my feelings of needing you. i worried for a moment about what shaking it out might do, but did it anyway.

instantly i noticed that there was no arch support in my shoes. the sand had provided a nice cushiness that made it easier to walk. oh well, no matter. i'd get used to walking without it sooner or later.

but when i approached the tower i felt my first sense of fear. suddenly it occured to me that the tower was really high and if i slipped i could die. and i worried because i knew the bars of the ladder would feel different without the sand in my shoes.

(this is the part where it gets confusing)

somehow, climbing up or down this tower was a part of some built in connection between us. the ladder didn't quite go close enough to the ground to let us fall without getting hurt, or reach it on our own to climb up. whenever one of us was climbing the tower, no matter where the other person was, part of your/my soul was there to make up for the missing segment of ladder.

i climbed down first, and i felt guilty at the bottom, where i was clinging to you to make my way down the last few feet before i could safely drop. i worried that i might be hurting you, and i always thought that maybe i should let go sooner, and risk personal injury, to keep you from pain. but i always consoled myself by acknowledging that i provided the same service to you and it never seemed to do me any harm.

(and here it gets weird)

as i started climbing down the tower, "dirty mind" by The Miller Stain Limit started playing (my absolute favorite song, which i've always wanted to make a video for). as i was climbing down this tower, i was being watched by the people on the ground below, and also being filmed as a music video for this song.

when it was your turn to climb down, you did something at the top of the tower that made video footage of you as a little kid going around destroying things replace the view of your climbing. i didn't know how you'd done this. i was quite impressed and worried that you'd be disappointed in me for not having thought of something like that.

as everyone watched and enjoyed your video, i looked forward to the moment you'd join me at the bottom of the tower. i looked forward to seeing you again, because i'd apparently missed you. and i looked forward to the others seeing what an interesting person i was connected to, when they saw us together and realized you were the guy who made the video.

but i also feared our time was coming to and end. it was a fear i knew i wouldn't have thought to have had i not removed the sand from my shoes. but it was a fear i was glad to have, because it only seemed fair. it would have been selfish to stay dependent on you once i realized that i was.

so i knew i did not need you nor you me. and i worried about the pain i might have caused you in the climb. and i realized that if you were disappointed in my lack of creativity when the video started being made, it was only because you deserved someone better.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

exquisite (option 6)

(facebook notes. 1.11.11)

be that as it may, there are still a few things i'd like point out.

first, needle-nose pliers resemble neither a needle nor a nose, and would more aptly be called "does anybody have anything i can grip this joint with" pliers.

secondly, i think i'm missing something

three, the idea of cohesion between paragraphs resulting from a similarity of structure is flower.

5. do you know what it is?

4. when people hear words like this, they assume the speaker must be high. high means uninhibited. is there a problem with being uninhibited within our normal states of mind, or must we seek being high for social acceptance of our thought patterns?

seven ate 9: at an early age, humans learn to find carelessness joyful, as carelessness is thought of as a mark of being privileged. we learn to throw ourselves all over everything, but we never learn to say what we mean.

some people will only listen to me if they think i am under the influence. others will only listen if they think i'm not. (i'm not, btw.) who decides just when a person should be listened to?

number out of sequence - in conclusion, see previous statement

this list has been brought to you by "exquisite (option 6)". please note: there is no number 6 in this list.

when i came to my notes, i wanted to write "exquisite (option 7)," but i realized there wasn't a 6 yet. you are to interpret that 6 is the text missing from this list.

k thx bai ^_^

dreams: back in time, in another universe


i was 18, but i'd already been working at some interesting job. i was a character of my own design, and this was a universe in which people generally believed in me and trusted my decisions. my hair was long and curly, like Daine's in "The Immortals Quartet." i was very pretty and capable.

my friend (who first appeared as my a guy i know named Tyler) and I were sitting on the hill outside my parents house (a large plot of land with lots of people congregating on it for various purposes) talking, and we decided to run away together. whatever his lot was in this universe, it wasn't nice like mine.

as we were inside the trailor, getting ready to leave, my mom (some eccentric dark-haired lady) came in with Inara from Firefly, her close friend and advisor. i feared they might try to talk us out of going, but instead they began packing us some snack food we could eat on our trip, mostly cheese and crackers and chocolate.

the friend i was running away with (now a girl i used to know named Haley) asked if we were going "into town," meaning the more residential part of ssm, or traverse city. i told her we were getting on I-75, heading south, and stopping when we felt like we should. (i had Arizona in mind, a little, when i said this, because i remembered everything from my life in this universe, so i had a huge advantage, knowing that it was in fact possible to drive to another city without a plan and find a job and a place to live, because i'd done it before, and i also knew my way around certain places, even if i'd never been there in the current life.)

we stopped around Petosky, and my friend (now Lioness) and i got out to ask directions at a store we saw a few people leaving, up this dark flight of stairs. they held the door for us as we approached, so we didn't see what was on the outside of the door. but i saw a vision of the door in my mind's eye as it closed (how sometimes in dreams you're standing where you just were, watching yourself move on like you're watching a movie) and realized we had just entered a porn shop.

of course, as we looked around it became pretty obvious it was a porn shop, anyway. Lioness started flicking the dildos by the counter to watch them wobble. the clerk glared at me and asked me what i wanted and then asked Lioness if she was even old enough to be there. i told him we just needed directions, though i had no idea in my mind of where we were asking directions to. the guy made some mention of how we and the people before us must be really stupid to come in and ask directions when there's a compass just down the street. (i thought "well if we're not from around here, how would we have known about the compass down the street?" but i didn't interupt, because he'd started giving directions.)

he said we were in the part urban part rural section of town, and we had to go to the real urban industrial section of town to find the place we were looking for. (he even told us what the place we were looking for was.) it was a coffee shop, and he praised the owner as being a really great guy, said his name was Trent Reznor.

Lioness and I left excited. somehow, at this point, we both new we were in an alternate universe, one where Trent Reznor wasn't famous yet, and the thought of meeting him before he became famous was rather enthralling. "we can get jobs working at his coffee shop!" i exclaimed. Lioness gave me a look that said she had other things in mind for young Trent Reznor. i corrected myself. "I can get a job working at his coffee shop! And you can do . . . well, you know, whatever."

then we walked into a party in ssm with all our friends in it. (i'm not quite sure how we ended up at a party in ssm. possibly we knew how to use portals.) Lioness wanted to tell them the news, but my mind was on hurrying up so we could get back to our journey to Trent Reznor's coffee shop. afterall, we'd left the car parked in front of a porn shop in petosky.

Mackinac Bridge

from a window in the Old Mackinac Lighthouse

through a knot on the beach of Mackinac Island

through a Mackinac Island ferry window

Thursday, April 21, 2011

we can walk away

this is normal
the half-sung melody stopped on cracked lips
humanity bled and castrated
forced to act until it's
forced to think until it's
forced to feel
until it can be forced no more
the subtle rape over decades
taken on in suffocating calm
once you lose an ear, what's an eye?
once you lose an eye, what's a tongue?

there will come a time
we may not live to see
when all of this will stop
and only those incapable
or showing blatant disregard
will be survivors
there will come a time
when being passive will mean
neglecting our human needs
as opposed to our animal ones
a peaceful revolution in which
we realize we don't need this system to survive
and we turn a blind eye
to the struggles
of those who've turned a blind eye to ours for so long

you will be forgotten
the moment we've formed defenses
against the weapons you wield

you won't be forgiven
when all there's left to do
is turn away in silence

dreams: green skin


i was sitting at a bar when i noticed a hard green lump on the back of my left hand, about the size and shape of a mosquito bite in the center, with trails of green spreading across the rest of my hand. i asked the people around me if they new what it was.

turns out i was poisoned by a shard of metal from the junkyard, which made me suspect that the person next to me, a friend in the dream, had accidently jabbed me with the shard when he touched me earlier.

the nice bartender woman used scissors to cut the skin of my hand into liftable flaps so she could insert little plastic packets to suck the poison out. it was a peculiar process. three cuts of about an inch or so in different directions. i wasn't sure why the poisoned blood had to be sucked into plastic packets or why the bartender put a piece of cloth bandage on my hand underneath a triangle flap of skin, instead of over the cuts. i worred the skin was going to die if left like that, but i couldn't get her attention to ask when i was supposed to take it off.

what the poison does is make you turn green and eventually hardens your flesh. when i looked it up on the internet later, i realized that after a certain point in the spread of the poison, the doctor's advice becomes "lie down and spend the night thinking about your life, because for you there is no tomorrow." once your heart and lungs turn green, it's only a matter or hours before they harden and you die.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

cups of coffee

pictures from Michigan and Arizona, in no logical order:

dreams: i locked my key in my room

(original post 1.15.10)

i was in staying in a hotel. it had terrible plumbing problems, but overall i was happy with the room and the way the sunlight slanted in through a sliding door leading to a porch. i decided to go down to the lobby and enjoy some of their continental foodstuffs. just as i got outside my room, i realized i'd left the room key in there. i figured it'd be no problem, that i'd get assistance from the front desk on my way back.

the food the motel had layed out for its guests turned out to be a massive banquet of breakast, dinner, and dessert foods. choices galore. so i grabbed a paper plate from a stack inside a basket also containing m&m's of multiple sizes, shook the m&m's off, and begin examining the tables of food to make my selections. there was so much to look at, i was very slow and careful in my choices. but other people kept pushing around me to snatch things away like they would die without them.

by the time i got to the desert table, i'd ended up with two styrophome to-go boxes, like everyone else had, that i was working on filling. i set my dessert box onto the table to begin scooping some of cake into it, when a lady cut right ahead of me and started scooping as much of the multiple kinds of cake as she possibly could into her own container. she was taking so long by taking so much, that i was starting to grow impatient. just as my mind began to wonder, she took the cake knife and started hurriedly scooping the sweets from my dessert box.

i shouted "that's mine" a little too loudly. she stopped, and everyone in the room turned to look at us. the cake lady was looking at me like i'd just slapped her. "well, it was mine," i said defensively. the room was waiting for something to happen. finally, i apologized. "look, i'm sorry i yelled it you. i was just surprised. you see, that box you were scooping the cake from was mine that i'd set in front of me while waiting for my turn with the cake scoop." her expression changed to a look of "oh that makes sense," and the room went back to its chatter.

later, but before i'd made it back to the front desk to ask for someone who could let me back into my room, i was with my cousin K, looking through a bunch of random stuff on shelves (a hotel lost and found turned thrift store). i was just about to mention that i wanted to get back to my room, when i noticed that one of their unused greeting cards had a note paperclipped to the back.

the note was topped with a manga-ish drawing. i don't remember the words exactly, but it was addressed to someone named Matt, and the gist of it was her wondering if he was still mad about the abortion she got, even though other people who've never even understood her hadn't judged.

Monday, April 18, 2011

the voices of souls

i remember the dizzy time
lying on the couch, movement terrifying
a calling of crows to one another
in graying sky otherwise silent

it was just the vitamins
i took to be healthy
making a mess of a mind too vulnerable
it was just iron poisoning
another temporary physical ailment
the kind i always think is something else
something much more personal
a sickness in the soul

i assumed it a bad omen
the crows my only comfort
a reminder that something right then
outside of me was living
that there was more to this existence
than me and the inability to sit up
i thought it meant something was terribly wrong
that someone i loved was going to die
like talking to ancient gods in the pulse of fever

there was a pause in my writing
a pause in my thinking
a break in the dream
and i realized
not every part of me would survive

reading old diaries before burning

in real life
it takes several months
to wake up from a lotus dream
you think you understand the words on the wind
and belong there
you think you can feel the spirits of the earth
telling you to stay
and as you try to step out
to glimpse a fragment of what lies away
you're looking for any reason not to
continuously tugged by the tentacles of desire

in real life
it's not a thing you can force yourself from
you have to wait for the high to run its course
for the tentacles to die and crumble to dust
for something shiny to distract you
into making that final step
and when you wake up
you'll see only a shred of what was there
what was so real, for so long, almost forgotten

in real life
the treasures that mean the most to us
the pathways that consume us
drown us, bury us, bring us to life
don't always exist

Thursday, April 14, 2011

gazing out coffee shop windows

J.L. Beanery, Mackinac Island, MI 2009

Shot In The Dark Cafe, Tucson, AZ 2010

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

dreams: everyone's from vanderbilt

(original post 01.26.10. typed at first in former "letters" blog to a friend in lower michigan, hence the "you.")

I had a dream last night that we were at a small David Usher concert. I was up on stage trying to get the crowd singing along and clapping at the right times, and somehow messing it up and making a fool of myself. I was trying to just keep moving, to tell myself that if didn't matter if everything went a certain way, that what mattered was for everyone to be having fun.

Then, David Usher noticed some problem with the lighting and left the stage to go fix it. All the people started talking about how awesome it was he could even adjust his own concert lighting.

You went to go talk to him, and when you stopped him a bunch of people started taking his picture. He had a rather somber expression, and I overheard him telling you that these days it was either all photo energy or none (or something to the effect of 'we all have our strange days where we just can't expel the type of energy it takes to present ourselves at our best').

Anyway, you asked where he was from, and he told you near Vanderbilt (in real life, it's somewhere in Canada, I think, but in the dream I believed him). I was impressed that the musician I admire more than any other was from the same place as you, and that you were talking to him.

You continued to talk until, seemingly irritated, he asked something like "But you just want to borrow my credit card for breakfast, don't you?" And he suddenly dashed off.

We stood there wondering if he was going to come back, until I woke up in your house and started telling you about how I just had the strangest dream, and then I woke up here.

So, as I'm having my first cup of coffee this morning, I've been thinking: Wow. Cool. I had a dream about David Usher. But I didn't get to talk to him. You did. I hate you.


Sunday, April 10, 2011


last fall i got a word stuck in my head. the word was exquisite. i felt compelled to write my thoughts on that word, typing up my take on it on facebook a handful of times over the days.

(option 1: 8.20.10)

this is where i say i want to understand and you say the same.
we're at that part of the play.
over and over again i know my lines, i know my place.
i'm a wicked stepsister, and the shoe doesn't fit.
tell me what else we can do.
you could help me rewrite the script.
have us meet behind a warehouse at daybreak.
you could be the prince of reinvented spirit.
in my k-mart clothes and worn sandals,
i'm redefining exquisite.
take me somewhere i've never been.
and let me be something amazing.
this is where i say i want to undersand and you say the same.
we'll discover the world in you, me, everything.

(option 2: 8.20.10)

dreams of broken colors and tiled misunderstanding. words too old to find the places lost in weather. turmoil. wanderlust. broken shoes and a drunken face of unhindered fellowship gone awry. this is what you told me without speaking. this is what i tell you everyday. waking into strangeness and curtained walls. what's behind the lies, behind the window. there is no window. that was a hallucination.

i take this mask and i put it on just to throw it away. it doesn't suit me in your light. burning through endless passions of no name. no identification. such is the reality of whispers.

when you took the sliver from your palm and placed it in the fire, did you happen to see the storm clouds falling in through the ceiling? the whole place was collapsing on a textbook of forgotten shadows. it's just the way of it. i keep saying. it just is. it just is. but everyone wants to change it.

if we dare to open our eyes at the same time, will we finally see the same?

if we dare to clear the dust away from the table, will we find the message half-eaten by time waiting for us?

take what's yours and leave me with the sunrise. or stay with me to see it through. it doesn't matter. it's already been decided.

(option 3: 8.21.10)

i took the possibility and ran with it
for whatever it was worth at the time
a symptom, a daydream
another moment in my history
each time better than the last
i coveted the meaning
wrapped up in it like lightning
and spoke whatever words came naturally
or unnaturally
or somewhere in between
i became the elements of your love
and wound myself through pictures and figures
through winds so sorrowful
and beauty so unanticipated
i never know
what i'll find inside myself
when i try to look in someone else

(option 4: 8.24.10)

let's get this over with. blind sink broken shades of harmonic discord malinformed the likeless persevere. what does it all mean?

are we all made of lies? lines repeated with no meaning? words whispered dead on the floor. i've said everything so many times yet nothing seems to stick.

it doesn't matter, does it?

so used to it it doesn't care. cry said blanket. fuck. soul mural doused in turpentine.

lay it beside me. and understand. the ground beneath my back breathes of subtle broken arrogance. we can't fall asleep with it, and we can't wake up without it.


Thursday, April 7, 2011

dreams: just an hour or two

i was in the hospital after some kind of accident. even though i felt fine, the nurse told me i had only an hour or two left to live. my heart was permanently damaged and apparently no longer pumping blood to the rest of my body. the nurse did some little procedure which involved tapping by my ear to show me that i still had a heartbeat but no longer had a pulse.

then she said that this condition would be turning painful in a matter of seconds and gave me some cyanide pills, which i took immediately. i still didn't die right away though.

i ended up getting released from the hospital to see people before i died. i ended up at my grandparents' house where there were a whole bunch of people gathered. "i should have shown more concern for them in my life," i thought, "look how many people are here who care that i'm dying." but it turned out they were gathered for some other reason and had no idea i was dying, and i didn't much feel like telling them.

then i ended up here with the current roomies. as i wandered around the house thinking about my life, i passed C@ and asked her where i should go to die when it was finally time for my body to stop moving. i didn't want to make a mess in her house. i wanted removal of my body to be fairly quick and easy. she told me it would be okay to die in the bathroom.

throughout this dream, i kept thinking of all the things i wished i would have done and all the things i wished i would have said to people. i was accepting of the fact that i was going to die, but i still considered the end of my life as a serious loss of human potential. near the end of the dream, i was wishing for a second chance, some glitch in time or reality, anything. i told myself that if i got a second chance, i'd say all the things i'd wished i'd said to people and do as many of the things i'd wished i'd done as possible.

so when i woke up in bed, it took a moment for me to realize i wasn't dying, and my first thought was "this is my second chance."

(original post: 9.15.10 on blogger)

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

sojourner cafe

i'm looking through a window of familiar words
trying to see myself
or even a slightly accurate picture
of who i am to you
because, you know
any issue not seen from all sides
is far from truly seen
these are my thoughts as i wait for the bus
as i order a glass of wine
as i read and remember
i'm more than what i've shown you

i want you to see all of me
though i don't know how much of this is real
and i don't know if who i am
is anything close to something you could love

i see her rising from the ocean
blue hair and bone necklace
calling for your heart in song
and i say i want to be like her
before i remember what happens with sirens

and every time i come so close
to being in love
rubs another sandpaper scar into my skin
because there's always a way
it seems i need to be
something other than what i am

-March 1, 2011

courthouses and legends

art fixtures between library and courthouse, Tucson, AZ 2009

The Crane of the Sault in front of the courthouse, Sault Ste. Marie, MI 2009

The Wolf of Rome in front of the courthouse, Sault Ste. Marie, MI 2009

a griffin just down the road from the courthouse, Tucson AZ 2010

he left his footprints on the sidewalk:

Monday, April 4, 2011

so, tell me . . .

i could tell you what i was seeing while i took each of these photographs. but i'm curious to know what you see. ^_^