Tuesday, June 29, 2010


Heavy with it

Thigh and tongue, beloved,

are heavy with it,

it throbs in the teeth

We look for communion

and are turned away, beloved,

each and each

It is leviathan and we

in its belly

looking for joy, some joy

not to be known outside it

two by two in the ark of

the ache of it.


An American in Paris

Maybe Paris has a way of making people forget.

Paris? No. Not this city. It's too real and too beautiful to ever let you forget anything.


"There is darkness in life and there are lights, and you are one of the lights, the light of all lights."

Monday, June 28, 2010

I dream you. For me, imagination and desire are very close.

"What should I do about the wild and the tame? The wild heart that wants to be free, and the tame heart that wants to come home. I want to be held. I don't want you to come too close. I want you to scoop me up and bring me home at nights. I don't want to tell you where I am. I want to keep a place among the rocks where no one can find me. I want to be with you." -Jeanette Winterson

F.L. Block

'But he loved her enough not to leave her, not to turn away. When she started to sob again he took her in his arms and answered every question with a whisper. Am I sick? No. It was my fault? No. Where is he? Here, here, here, he said, putting his hand gently at the hollow of her throat where he could feel her brother beating like a heart. Help me? Yes.'

Despair has its own calms.

Bram Stoker

She whispered

She had always wanted words, she loved them, grew up on them. Words gave her clarity, brought reason, shape.

Whereas I thought words bent emotions, like sticks in water.

From this point on, she whispered, we will either find or lose our souls.

-Michael Ondaatje


One garland

of flowers, leaves, thorns

was twined round our two necks.

Drawn tight, it could choke us,

yet we loved its scratchy grace,

our fragrant yoke.

We were Siamese twins.

Our blood’s not sure

if it can circulate,

now we are cut apart.

Something in each of us is waiting

to see if we can survive,



Thursday, June 24, 2010

Note to Olga


Of lead and emerald
the reliquary
that knocks my breastbone,

slung round my neck
on a rough invisible rope
that rubs the knob of my spine.

Though I forget you

a red coal from your fire

burns in that box.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Heavy in Your Arms, Florence and the Machine

I was a heavy heart to carry
My beloved was weighed down
My arms around his neck
My fingers laced to crown.

I was a heavy heart to carry
My feet dragged across ground
And he took me to the river
Where he slowly let me drown

My love has concrete feet
My love's an iron ball
Wrapped around your ankles
Over the waterfall

I'm so heavy, heavy
Heavy in your arms

And is it worth the wait
All this killing time?
Are you strong enough to stand
Protecting both your heart and mine?

Who is the betrayer?
Who's the killer in the crowd?
The one who creeps in corridors
And doesn't make a sound

This will be my last confession
I love you never felt like any blessing
Whispering like it's a secret
Only to condemn the one who hears it
With a heavy heart

I'm so heavy in your arms

I was a heavy heart to carry
But he never let me down
When he had me in his arms
My feet never touched the ground

Tuesday, June 22, 2010


My love, leave yourself behind
Beat inside me, leave you blind
My love, you have found peace


Blessed is he who expects no gratitude, for he shall not be disappointed.

Henry David Thoreau

"Could a greater miracle take place than for us to look through each others eyes for an instant?"



"Whatever debases the intelligence degrades the entire human being."
-Simone Weil

A Tree Telling of Orpheus

I was the first to see him, for I grew
out on the pasture slope, beyond the forest.
He was a man, it seemed. . .

He told of journeys,
of where sun and moon go while we stand in dark,
of an earth-journey he dreamed he would take some day
deeper than roots ...

Then as he sang
it was no longer sounds only that made the music:
he spoke, and as no tree listens I listened, and language
came into my roots
out of the earth,
into my bark
out of the air,
into the pores of my greenest shoots
gently as dew
and there was no word he sang but I knew its meaning.

He told of journeys,
of where sun and moon go while we stand in dark,
of an earth-journey he dreamed he would take some day
deeper than roots ...
He told of the dreams of man, wars, passions, griefs,
and I, a tree, understood words – ah, it seemed
my thick bark would split like a sapling's that
grew too fast in the spring
when a late frost wounds it.

Fire he sang,
that trees fear, and I, a tree, rejoiced in its flames....

Fire he sang,
that trees fear, and I, a tree, rejoiced in its flames.
New buds broke forth from me though it was full summer.
As though his lyre (now I knew its name)
were both frost and fire, its chords flamed
up to the crown of me.
I was seed again.
I was fern in the swamp.
I was coal.

In the forest
they too had heard,
and were pulling their roots in pain
out of a thousand years' layers of dead leaves...

And I
in terror
but not in doubt of
what I must do
in anguish, in haste,
wrenched from the earth root after root,
the soil heaving and cracking, the moss tearing asunder —
and behind me the others: my brothers
forgotten since dawn. In the forest
they too had heard,
and were pulling their roots in pain
out of a thousand years' layers of dead leaves,
rolling the rocks away,
breaking themselves
out of
their depths.

We have stood here since,
in our new life.
We have waited.

The music reached us.

stumbling over our own roots,
rustling our leaves
in answer,
we moved, we followed.

By dawn he was gone.
We have stood here since,
in our new life.
We have waited.
He does not return.

Perhaps he will not return. But what we have lived comes back to us.
We see more.
We feel, as our rings increase,
something that lifts our branches, that stretches our furthest leaf-tips further.

It is said he made his earth-journey, and lost
what he sought.
It is said they felled him
and cut up his limbs for firewood.
And it is said
his head still sang and was swept out to sea singing.

Perhaps he will not return.
But what we have lived
comes back to us.
We see more.
We feel, as our rings increase,
something that lifts our branches, that stretches our furthest

The wind, the birds,
do not sound poorer but clearer,
recalling our agony, and the way we danced.
-Denise Levertov

Monday, June 21, 2010

Opening the Hand

"I had hardly begun to read
I asked how can you ever be sure
that what you write is really
any good at all and he said you can't
you can't you can never be sure
you die without knowing
whether anything you wrote was any good
if you have to be sure don't write"
— W.S. Merwin

Send me out

"Send me out into another life lord,
because this one is growing faint
I do not think it goes all the way."

— W.S. Merwin

Project Education Sudan


Building Hope in Southern Sudan

Project Education Sudan is a US 501(c)(3) Charitable Organization created as a partnership of Sudanese and Americans in response to the destruction that resulted from the twenty-year civil war between northern and Southern Sudan. Our mission is to fund and support indigenous Sudanese organizations and communities that build primary and secondary schools, and to train teachers in rural villages in Southern Sudan. Project Education Sudan believes that sustained prosperity is dependent on the ability of children and adults to receive primary and secondary education and skills training.

The Mission

Project Education Sudan works with community leaders and village elders in Sudan to help them build, staff, train and supply primary and secondary schools, as well as to provide adult education. We emphasize the inclusion of girls and women in the educational opportunities we promote. We support the local economy and development of local entrepreneurship by helping fund school construction and by donating commercial grain grinders, sewing machines, cinderblock making equipment to each village.

We are committed to bringing clean water and healthcare to the communities where we help build schools through partnerships with other international and indigenous organizations.

Project Education Sudan follows the UNICEF accountability model in funding projects, project inspection, and verification of spending requests, working closely with Sudanese organizations and communities that we support to ensure transparency. Our Executive Director and a team of dedicated volunteers perform the activities of PES without compensation.

The mission of Project Education Sudan as a US 501(c)(3) Charitable Organization, is to fund and support indigenous organizations that create educational infrastructure in rural Southern Sudan. A twenty-year civil war between northern and Southern Sudan demolished the existing educational system in the South. In 2005, Carol Rinehart and former Southern Sudanese “Lost Boy” Isaac Khor Bher founded Project Education Sudan. When Isaac was only five years old, he had been forced to flee the destruction of his village of Konbek and to live for decades in refugee camps in Ethiopia and Kenya before immigrating to the United States. In May of 2005, the year the war in Southern Sudan finally ended, Isaac and Carol journeyed back to Konbek to reunite Isaac with his family. There, they saw the dire educational needs of the villagers. Currently, Project Education Sudan works cooperatively with rural communities to support the building of schools in three villages of Southern Sudanese “Lost Boys” in Bor County, Jonglei State.

Donate today! http://www.projecteducationsudan.org/pages/help.html

A Female Corpse (back view)

Down turned

Mouth filled with dirt

Long have I lain


A jeweled apple

my skull talks back

decomposed prettily

barnacles from our sea

arrange themselves in little rows

tegument me

I do my corpse-waltz

To your side

press your lips on mine

I want to smell you exhale

Feel you pale

Linen wrapped

my body arabesques

flinging free

Surprised I still can sway

You brandish


Like a sword.
Cut me to pieces

In a flourished grave

I've become cowardly.

There is nothing left human

To recognize by.

Circled dark

Ringing eyes

I hear chanting

deep inside.

My coffin dilates,

Slip inside

cob-webbed and crippled

brightest thing I've seen

Come, lay next to me

These are drying wounds

The worms will soon take over.

Elizabeth and Montgomery

“I loved him deeply. He was my brother...it just seemed like Heaven."

Friday, June 18, 2010

A New Feminist’s Guide to The Movement: The Sarah Palin Welcome Wagon


If you haven’t heard, Sarah Palin is a feminist now! Which I’ve decided to view in the best possible light and write her an open letter (because she’s getting ripped to shreds everywhere else), effectively Quantum Leaping us to a timeline where she isn’t just an absolute monster!

GAWWWWWD, I hope the next leap is the leap home.

Sarah Palin,

Sarah Palin, I love to hate you. I haven’t loved to hate anyone this much since George W. Bush. And like Bush, you become more and more of a cartoon character each day. Sarah, if you had won the election I would be living in Canada right now. I would have moved to Canada, gotten married to an architect and raised Labradoodles, I really would have.

It isn’t just that every time I hear you speak, you seem uneducated. Because you are not a dumb person. You are shrewd. Just like Lady Gaga. Both of you ladies have this ability to crawl your way to the top, elbowing everyone else out of the way with your tenacity… it is breathtaking. Everything you do seems wacky and calculated.

Sarah, we need to talk about feminism. We need to have a conversation about feminism. A long one. Because feminist isn’t a word that anyone takes lightly. Especially now, when it seems a little heroic to call yourself a feminist. Conservatives and douchebags with too many hypotheticals and too much aftershave and personal space issues have dragged that word through the mud. I know a lot of women who won’t call themselves feminists — even though they believe in total and complete equality for women.

Being a feminist is about fighting complacency within yourself and others. It is waking up every morning and knowing that something you do will be shitty and full of privilege. For guys, it is about repeating “If it’s not about you, don’t make it about you” a million times until you understand that it isn’t. That is the process that we all go through to be allies to one another.

This is a journey of personal growth. And frankly, I didn’t think you were interested in personal growth. Women like you have your career, your money, and fuck the rest of the world. You ignore facts, evidence, and logic if they don’t gibe with your delusional, right-wing talking point – you lie and lie and lie (SARAH, remember that time, you like, got found guilty of ethics violations and then came out and JUST PRETENDED YOU HAD WON?) and no one cares. Some people love you – my mother bought your book. She rambles on about you not aborting your baby, and I’m all “Aren’t you pro-choice?” because she was a 911 dispatcher for a million years and knows how important safe, clean access to abortions is to desperate young women and my mother says something about her feelings changing since my brother had his new kid and just walks away. [I'm on to you, mother.]

Sarah, ideas as important as feminism don’t have gatekeepers. There is no licenses given out [Tiny Tape Recorder Notes #478: Suggest selling feminism licenses to make money at next staff meeting... as a joke.] to be a feminist. You just wake up one day and say “Hey! The world is a shitty place. I am making it shittier with my ignorance. I should educate myself. Now I will use what I’ve learned to make things happen.” DONE. You are now a feminist.

Here are a few things YOU could do, right now, to be a better feminist:

1. Stop protecting corporations from justice. Survivors like Jamie Leigh Jones need your support more than KBR does. Women in the armed forces are being sexually assaulted AND NO ONE IS TALKING ABOUT IT. No one is talking about the smug sense of entitlement the military has about silencing survivors of sexual assault. The rape culture is bigger and more tentacled than you can imagine – rape culture is all around us. You could be helping.

2. Women living in the midst of a rape culture are intentionally restricted from family planning options. Abstinence-based sex education takes all of the power from young women, and places it in the hands of young men. Young men are socialized to be aggressive and take what they want, and young women are socialized to be demure and passive and that is how a girl ends up pregnant without knowing that sex leads to pregnancy. These girls deserve a choice. They deserve to choose when they will have a child and they don’t need a FUCKING VAGINAL ULTRASOUND AND A LECTURE, they need someone to hold their hand and comfort them. Abortions should be clean, free, and legal. Forever.

3. Quit making fun of Barack Obama. He is doing a very difficult job, he is doing it with aplomb, and you are not helping. When you ridicule Obama, your followers take that as a thumbs up for some nasty, old school racism. There are some ugly pockets of the country, Sarah, and these people worship you. They sit with their NASCAR Big Gulps in front of their high-definition televisions, and they nearly wee themselves when they see your face! They love everything you love and hate everything you hate! Including any and all minorities.

4. Universal health care, Sarah. We need it. We need it for disabled women who can’t work, we need it for better and more comprehensive sex education, we need it to lower the infant mortality rate. Health care is only expensive because people will pay more to keep their loved ones alive. That is it. End of story. Health care is shitty because of greed.

5. Support full civil rights for gays. Stop calling people “San Francisco liberals”, with that homophobic twinkle in your eye. It is a huge fucking city. A few blocks of it are gay. The world is not ending, your face is not sliding off, chill the fuck out with the homophobia. And please don’t say you have gay friends. In fact, please stop making claims if you aren’t prepared for follow-up questions. (What magazines do you read? ALL OF THEM? Bullshit. You struggle through Highlights, maybe.)

Those are just a few helpful hints. Again, welcome to feminism. Enjoy this journey of emotional and intellectual growth.

Yours always,
Garland Grey

Hades, my love

"No, you took me home again
You bit me gently, not drawing blood
You fed me pomegranate seeds
I sucked the clear red coating off the sharp white pith
The taste was sweet at first
and then dry as dirt, as bone

‘I love you so much I don’t care if I die,’ I told you
So what if you didn’t say it back?
Your hair was always cold against my burning skin, cold
and smelled of smoke
Your skin was always cool and sleek
Hades, my love"

-F. L. Block

Hey Jude

Matt Luck - Top Senior Solo - Columbus - 2010

I used to have a huge art print of this photo...

when I was a teenager, hanging in my bedroom. I stumbled upon it today online and decided to post it. I wish I knew what happened to it...I moved a lot for a while and unfortunately things disappeared.

Edith Wharton

"Life is always a tightrope or a featherbed. Give me the tightrope."

W.S. Merwin

"On the last day of the world
I would want to plant a tree"

Thursday, June 17, 2010


"I knew that I had come face to face with some one whose mere personality was so fascinating that, if I allowed it to do so, it would absorb my whole nature, my whole soul, my very art itself."


"Was this the face that launch'd a thousand ships, and burnt the topless towers of Ilium? Sweet Helen, make me immortal with a kiss. Her lips suck forth my soul; see where it flies!-Come, Helen, come, give me my soul again. Here will I dwell, for Heaven be in these lips, and all is dross that is not Helena." -Faustus

Bon Iver

Up with your turret
Aren't we just terrified?
Shale, screen your worry from what you won't ever find

Don't let it fool you
Don't let it fool you...down
Dancing around, folds in her gown

Sea and the rock below
Caught in the undertow
Bones blood and teeth erode, with every crashing node

Wings wouldn't help you
Wings wouldn't help you...down
Down fills the ground, gravity's proud

You barely are blinking
Wagging your face around
When'd this just become a mortal home?

Won't, won't, won't, won't

Won't let you talk me
Won't let you talk me down
Will pull it taut, nothing let out

How does one survive it?

To fall in love and be disassembled.


"Once upon a long time ago

I had a brother

Belonged to each other

A boy and a girl.

Tied at the hip

and forged in pain

only the other knew.

The girl grew older

The boy stayed younger

The girl wore suits of armor

She was haughty

And he was high-minded.

Running like lunatics

Free from the cell

Only whole in each other

She tied on his boots

Set him upon her horse

High as the king she saw him to be

Forced nobility

Inside his dull colors.

He tried so hard

Not hard enough

But it slid off him like skin,

Too loose.

The boy tripped often

Broke his feet on nothing.

She would always say,

You fall over atoms,

My whale boy.

When the demon snuck in

And ate his will

She tried to fight it

Sword swinging

Over her head like a rocket

He made sure the bad got away.

The boy made sure he was captured.

Pity found no place in her heart

After he ripped it out

To many times

Now she waits

For him to return

To their paradise

No one else can touch

She waits for him

Watches for him

Wounded forever by fear."


Out in the world she navigates fine by the moon... but get her 'round a lightbulb and she's doomed. -Ani D.

Yes, I'm 12...

But I love Sleeping Beauty.

I miss the way Paris smells.

"Human existence is so fragile a thing and exposed to such dangers that I cannot love without trembling. "
— Simone Weil