Thursday, July 30, 2009

relinquishing my lameness.

i_love_blink_almost_enough_to_be_this_tacky. =[ =[

summer reading for myself.

uhh, i'll get there.

about to pour forth.

unfortunately, the full text of oscar wilde's De Profundis, the current love of my literary life, is not available online. a good chunk of it can be found here (it actually comes in at page 46 of the printed version, which is appalling, as wilde would have deemed it). though i underlined half the letter to save quotes from it, it would be pointless to type them here, so i'll share the most thrilling ones:

"One half-hour with Art was always more to me than a cycle with you. Nothing really at any period of my life was ever of the smallest importance to me compared with Art. But in the case of an artist, weakness is nothing less than a crime, when it is a weakness that paralyses the imagination."

"Ultimately the bond of all companionship, whether in marriage or in friendship, is conversation, and conversation must have a common basis, and between two people of widely different culture the only common basis possible is the lowest level. The trivial in thought and action is charming."

"I reply by a letter of fantastic literary conceits... The letter is like a passage from one of Shakespeare's sonnets, transposed to a minor key."

"You did not realise that there is no room for both passions in the same soul. They cannot live together in that fair carven house. Love is fed by the imagination, by which we become wiser than we know, better than we feel, nobler than we are: by which we can see Life as a whole: by which, and by which alone, we can understand others in their real as in their ideal relations. Only what is fine, and finely conceived, can feed Love. But anything will feed Hate."

"The fatal errors of life are not due to man's being unreasonable: an unreasonable moment may be one's finest moment. They are due to man's being logical. There is a wide difference."

"Don't you realise now that you should have seen it, and come forward and said that you would not have my Art, at any rate, ruined for your sake? You knew what my Art was to me, the great primal note by which I had revealed, first myself to myself, and then myself to the world; the real passion of my life; the love to which all other loves were as marsh-water to red wine, or the glow-worm of the marsh to the magic mirror of the moon. Don't you understand now that your lack of imagination was the one really fatal defect of your character?"

"[Love's] joy, like the joy of the intellect, is to feel itself alive. The aim of Love is to love: no more, and no less."

"The great things of life are what they seem to be, and for that reason, ...are often difficult to interpret. But the little things of life are symbols. We receive our bitter lessons most easily through them."

"Sorrow is the most sensitive of all created things. There is nothing that stirs in the whole world of thought or motion to which Sorrow does not vibrate in terrible if exquisite pulsation. The thin beaten-out leaf of tremulous gold that chronicles the direction of forces that the eye cannot see is in comparison coarse. It is a wound that bleeds when any hand but that of Love touches it and even then must bleed again, though not for pain."

"Literature is, and has been, and always will remain the supreme representative art."

"There is a tact in love, and a tact in literature; you were not sensitive to either."

"Nobody, great or small, can be ruined except by his own hand."

"I made art a philosophy, and philosophy an art: I altered the minds of men and the colours of things: there was nothing I said or did that did not make people wonder: I took the drama, the most objective form known to art, and made it as personal a mode of expression as the lyric or the sonnet, at the same time that I widened its range and enriched its characterisation: drama, novel, poem in rhyme, poem in prose, subtle or fantastic dialogue, whatever I touched I made beautiful in a new mode of beauty: to truth itself I gave what is false no less than what is true as its rightful province, and showed that the false and the true are merely forms of intellectual existence. I treated Art as the supreme reality, and life as a mere mode of fiction: I awoke the imagination of my century so that it created myth and legend around me: I summed up all systems in a phrase, and all existence in an epigram."

"If I may not write beautiful books, I may at least read beautiful books, and what joy can be greater?"

"The faith that others give to what is unseen, I give to what one can touch, and look at. My gods dwell in temples made with hands; and within the circle of actual experience is my creed made perfect and complete: too complete, it may be, for like many or all of those who have placed their heaven in this earth, I have found in it not merely the beauty of heaven, but the horror of hell also. When I think about religion at all, I feel as if I would like to found an order for those who CANNOT believe: the Confraternity of the Faithless, one might call it, where on an altar, on which no taper burned, a priest, in whose heart peace had no dwelling, might celebrate with unblessed bread and a chalice empty of wine. Every thing to be true must become a religion."

"If I can produce even one more beautiful work of art I shall be able to rob malice of its venom, and cowardice of its sneer, and to pluck out the tongue of scorn by the roots... The only people I would care to be with now are artists and people who have suffered: those who know what Beauty is, and those who know what Sorrow is: nobody else interests me."

AND OH MY GOD SO MUCH MORE... that was already way too much.. oops.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

the most charming men in my life.

oscar. francis. william. ernest. james.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

mccaffrey's values every day.

i think i like today, i think it's good.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

from a ship.

I'm thinking about things the way I would like to see them. A cage of empty subconscious rattles and rolls before me, luring me to enter. So I lean back into this cushy seat that steals my head and forces its warm breath along my spine and into my thoughts. And suddenly there isn't anything I'd rather do more. I'm leaning against a stone window through which no one can see me. Eyeing the shapes and figures around me, I construct them into words and passages. Am I pathetic because the waves dash around me and I want to be alone with them, to breathe them in as religion, praying to my own senses? This is a world as I see it.

Friday, July 17, 2009

another way.

I'm in a stationary vehicle, my love and I. My soul and head are here. Suddenly I feel the urge to live as something so overwhelmingly forceful. I consider all the books I've yet to read, all the important people I've yet to meet. I have hoped and feared of finding myself in this position, of lingering in one spot too long with my own thoughts, my own soul, of falling in love so deeply with my heart that I feel so one-sided. And yet, I don't want to open the door, don't want to whisper the fatal word I know I must utter. He stares at me and we are both paralyzed in a heavy, sultry nothingness of time. My throat has been caught in my breath and I feel as if I should never speak again. Unlatching the door, I step back onto the earth, all at once realizing that I must say something another way. Inspiration expands in my lungs but does not permeate my oxygen when I attempt to say goodbye. I know I must tell you, tell you, some other way, but not here, not on this day caught between two schisms.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

i can't believe i just read it.

"Broaden your minds, my dears, and allow your eyes to see past the mundane!"

"The mind is not a book, to be opened at will and examined at leisure. Thoughts are not etched on the inside of skulls, to be perused by any invader. The mind is a complex and many-layered thing."

"Never trust anything that can think for itself, if you can't see where it keeps its brain."

transformation of bernard.

"Now begins to rise in me the familiar rhythm; words that have lain dormant now lift, now toss their crests, and fall and rise, and fall and rise again. I am a poet, yes. Surely I am a great poet. Boats and youth passing and distant trees, 'the falling fountains of the pendent trees.' I see it all. I feel it all. I am inspired. My eyes fill with tears. Yet even as I feel this, I lash my frenzy higher and higher. It foams. It becomes artificial, insincere. Words and words and words, how they gallop -- how they lash their long manes and tails, but for some fault in me I cannot give myself to their backs; I cannot fly with them, scattering women and string bags. There is some flaw in me -- some fatal hesitancy, which, if I pass it over, turns to foam and falsity. Yet it is incredible that I should not be a great poet. What did I write last night if it was not poetry? Am I too fast, too facile? I do not know. I do not know myself sometimes, or how to measure and name and count out the grains that make me what I am."
p. 83

"My book, stuffed with phrases, has dropped to the floor. It lies under the table to be swept up by the charwoman when she comes wearily at dawn looking for scraps of paper, old tram tickets, and here and there a note screwed into a ball and left with the litter to be swept up. What is the phrase for the moon? And the phrase for love? By what name are we to call death? I do not know. I need a little language such as lovers use, words of one syllable such as children speak when they come into the room and find their mother sewing and pick up some scrap of bright wool, a feather, or a shred of chintz. I need a howl; a cry. When the storm crosses the marsh and sweeps over me where I lie in the ditch unregarded I need no words. Nothing neat. Nothing that comes down with all its feet on the floor. None of those resonances and lovely echoes that break and chime from nerve to nerve in our breasts making wild music, false phrases. I have done with phrases."
p. 295

-Virginia Woolf, The Waves

two more thoughts.

There was always yesterday, too, and that is what creeps up on me when I think about tomorrow. It could have been this uneasiness that prevented me from scratching my pencil into the earth and publishing something... groundbreaking.
If one thinks he or she is great, that is fine and great for oneself, yet if one shares that thought with the world without sufficient proof, one will end up shouting obscenities on one's bed in the dark at two in the morning, hoping the stars will hear.

inspired by The Waves.

Early Morning.
The sun now rises later, and somewhere in the cloudy mass, is still preparing for his daily journey. He is perhaps too burdened by having seen all to come out today. This is the hour when periwinkle and rose whisper their last goodbyes, and their interlocking fingers pull away to let emerge the clarity of daybreak. The pink fades white, an evanescent cloud-shifter, and disappears for now, awaiting somewhere the evening embrace with her blue lover atop the clouds at sunset. The glory bird chirps alone to her, saying "adieu." His comrades leap from branch to branch, one by one, each scattering his appearance among empty tree branches of hideaway. Lady birds join his song in dainty harmony, lamenting the hidden sun this morning. A strip of golden sets on the weary uppermost branch tips as the sun finally makes his appearance. They bathe in his warm embrace, bow to him, and extend their fingertips for a dance with his highness. The waters are still now, except for an almost imperceptible tremble with the slight breezes. The things it has toppled in the night still remain in a state of upside-down confusion, but the wind feels no regret. The pond's calm being serves as a reflection pool, a looking-glass for the naked trees, to admire their appearances in the first hints of light. A lonely streetcar passes down a road of blue, its presence hushed and stilled by the nature around it. The simple bird calls again in alarm, for he discovers his morning has broken.

The sun is high in the sky now. He yawns and stretches his gilded rays, pushing into the faces of houses and causing passers-by to squint. Cars pass two by two, drifting casually to their destinations. The lampposts droop their heads in indifference, enjoying their dreaming hours. Branches converge and part, converge and part, bobbing together in rhythm with the gentle stirring breeze. This is the hour of blue; his plentiful body stretches hue and shade widely over squinters and streetcars. This is the time of periwinkle-white, golden blocks of glare supporting and contrasting the embrace of pale azure. Bits of star bathe on their bellies on windows and other glistening surfaces, having fallen from heaven to celebrate this joyous hour. The waters giggle directly under the sun's glare, push each other around and create undulations of sweet content. The people are scarce, they remain in buildings or in moving vehicles, perhaps playing or working or singing sweet songs to one another. They cannot, then, feel the tingle of warmth and breeze, smell the perfume of sunlight that makes drowsy tree and petal. But it is consuming and they feel it through brick walls.

Late Afternoon.
The sun has pulled his lacy blankets of cloud over him and has submitted to early drowsiness, leaving a legacy of soft hues on the last few tree leaves. The waters rock themselves to the wind's song, making baby waves and reflecting the dangling trunks with nervous, shaking hands. A definite coolness has arrived here, and dries the drooping, gaunt fingers of the treetops. They break off in millions, as dancers in still-life, slender branches dripping down over the water, while the tall, fine trunks stretch upward into the sun's secret hideaway. Unfaithful he is today, in a most dreary, crisp day of grey-blue smudges of sky caressing the coarse, sinewy heads of the trees. A silence ensues, a reminiscent muteness of ended travels and day's play. The simple cars make their rounds on smooth, grey road. Leaves and lights droop and tremble, for they have no purpose for now. Brownish leaf-piles rustle and break apart and transform into a couple of baby deer who are merely caught behind a fence. The sun, the stillness, leaf and sky, all are caught somewhere in late afternoon lethargy.

The sun has set definitively. All that is left in the sky is a patch of amalgamated blues snug between the tree branches, as if leaning closely into them to hear their analysis of the day's affairs. All is secret now. All is a dwindling cave of deep hue, all melting into the matter next to and surrounding it. A pale strip of yellow road is the only distinct form. It stretches a horizontal arm eternally into the trees from opposite ends, as if also digging for their secrets in the night air. Now and then a twinkling streetlight appears behind immense gathered trunks, gathering all the eye's attention, a brilliant contrast to the thickening void of black vertical lines. It is apparent only at the proper angle, at the proper head's turn, apparent only to the seeker who wishes to seek more, to find something vivid in this deep shade of sleeping forest. It lights the way for the street-car, which makes its last final push down the road, maybe home, maybe away. He is ubiquitous at this hour, obvious and now all are aware of his passing. He is out of sight, and the waters wave him goodbye, lit by the edges of sandy beige ground that illuminates in the light of the streetlamp. They ripple goodbye, and die into the night as the lamp flickers out.

monologue inspired by lucky.

Though Oscar Wilde once said that it is perhaps better not to put one’s worship into words, when one worships words, it’s easiest to worship with them. It’s a fine art, fine, fine art to speak without looking, to observe without understanding. Maybe I’m too too good an artist. And the erratic consciousness that accumulates is my shrine of seemingly nothingness but makes a little bit of sense when I think about it because I will remember the small things, the little things such as names and things, sounds, winks, colors, notes, letters, hair, structure, smell, scent, shapes, pattern, shiny things, and not shiny things and the little things may one day be big things and maybe I’ll collect them and try to remember everything I’ve remembered and worship them with words and phrases and sentences and punctuation marks that make pretty little lines of understanding and consciousness. Maybe we’re superficial because our thoughts are too big to be expressed correctly or maybe we’re all artists and we’re undercover in this world because we’re here to make something bigger and more wonderful from it. But maybe we just speak and talk and make lots of sentences a lot that may or may not make sense. But when they do, it’s poetry. When they don’t, sometimes it’s still poetry. And our words are bundled in time but we don’t know where time is or what it is or where it goes, but that it goes and we place our blame on it. But maybe it’s hidden from us and we make numbers because we are frustrated because we don’t know what they mean so we make lots more of them and then numbers and numbers but we still don’t feel closer to anything but science and science may or may not be true. Words are real, and time may or may not be. We can go on a quest for it. Perhaps it is the forbidden fruit but we should destroy all the numbers and try to feel it instead. Worship the world. And make words and phrases and sentences and punctuation marks and make everything we say pretty or not pretty and poetry or not poetry. Concrete things keep us up at night: the dripping sink or nose or the monster, but the feelings and things we say and write keep us up always and conscious of things always and we feel and feel until we feel no more and we die but everyone else feels for us. The modern artist sees imperfection and beats it and attacks it in abstract ways to make it beautiful or understandable, with the first impulse to destroy and the second to re-create. This may or may not be true. It gets old, but we are old souls.


"I wandered lonely as a cloud
That floats on high o'er vales and hills,
When all at once I saw a crowd,
A host of golden daffodils;
Beside the lake, beneath the trees,
Fluttering and dancing in the breeze.

Continuous as the stars that shine
and twinkle on the Milky Way,
They stretched in never-ending line
along the margin of a bay:
Ten thousand saw I at a glance,
tossing their heads in sprightly dance.

The waves beside them danced; but they
Out-did the sparkling waves in glee:
A poet could not but be gay,
in such jocund company:
I gazed -- and gazed -- but little thought
what wealth the show to me had brought:

For oft, when on my couch I lie
In vacant or in pensive mood,
They flash upon that inward eye
Which is the bliss of solitude;
And then my heart with pleasure fills,
And dances with the daffodils."

-William Wordsworth, "I wandered lonely as a cloud"


this always ending feeling
feels to me a beginning
all fresh-faced students
scurry to their sheltered worlds
and say "not on monday"
shunning the days that keep them alive
but we're alive, and at the beginning
we are the stars flying to the earth
but feel like asteroids; plowing and burdened
and so we begin

poking fun at ap lit.

"on observing the carrot" - march 1, 2009

she injects half the carotene into her face
and destroys it by crunch and peculiar space
cold and tangible rays, a small sun 'twixt her fingers
imperceptible veins, those on which her eye lingers
grow unsettling edges dark into the air --
orange, black, then gone, and he falls in despair


In any life, there will be a lull -- a time for action without meaning. HOW UNINSPIRED WE ARE TODAY.


unlikely thing, the sun.
for though he calls and bothers,
the day is almost done.


like a string of floss
that pulls infection from the source
do my words enter new
dangling together like
an ornament of thought
to decorate the grim room
they want to hear my
diseases, hopes, virtues
well, it's new
but it's their world

dual imagery.

he's hooked up to a beeping device.
the wrong finger flick
and he's out of life.
one slow reaction is all it takes
to end the gamer's game.
the lines flash in time,
his breath pulses with the
beeping booms.
high blows to her ears.
his coma seems endless until --
his stirring fingers race for life,
tapping out the quickening seconds
hot breath, be still, she pleads.
demented thumbs pulse,
press, push, play, plead
oh, give me life, he cries at once --
no breath
no words break the air
a streaming line, endless ringing,
symphony of defeat
and the game stops.

**Dedicated to the inspiring boy who sat in front of me in study hall and played video games all period.**

little thoughts.

You're a comfort in the strongest sense.
I hold you in and smell safety.
He was right in a way, though I take offense.
I was crazy for what I did.
In your scent are houses and chairs
and bright yellow kitchens.

girl in french class.

She was a bore, an absolutely vapid character, but when she spoke french, she became beautiful, delightfully invigorating, intimidatingly distant. Her words meant merely nothing, but they would plie and prance in a string, as a gauze mobile over a child's cradle. I'd stretch the time, embrace her inflections in my amorous ears, a secret affair of sounds and senses. Perhaps this is because she would then silence herself and retreat back into her pale, stained wooden desk with the metal legs and yawn. The dainty rush of air that escaped her lungs sunk densely down around her, irritating my now offended ears. It meant nothing to her, she didn't want any of these subordinates to hold her as highly as she held herself. This cool feast of air led to a fit of coughing but she'd never exit the room to soothe her throat. On she continued in spondaic rhythm of illness, patiently waiting for a queu to leave. I wanted more, wanted it as a sickness, needed her to stop this fit at once and bring back melodious vocals. A word of English breaks the curse and I am immediately out of love with her. I no longer feel the twinge of sensation that breaks over my skin when she utters the romance language. Opening her mouth as if to speak once more, she feels my presence and retreats from the phrase-maker. I am angry with her and my passion reddens, then dies.

summer goal?

create worlds and words -- connect them and rip them apart again until you find yourself in the schism that remains.


she scopes the sky
with little eyes,
wanting her silly surprise.


silver-laced moon,
smiling secrets onto the darkened faces
of mothers
crystal sun, inescapable