Sunday, December 13, 2009

disconnect plays an incredibly large role in my life
when I was fourteen I started writing my novel
it was about a man who was addicted to nicorette but had never smoked a cigarette in his life
when I was fifteen I shortened my notion to a novella
now my main character spent time meeting eyes with each person in his city
certain he could change each and every one of them if they held his heart while the sun came up
when I was sixteen, it became a short story
still addled by nicorette
lacking in the enzyme cyp2a6
he'd tell his therapist of days when his mother would only take polaroids of times when things weren't going right in his life
when he would scrape his knee
or fail a test
her idea was that later on in life, why look back through photographs to remember times that were better
to instead remember nostalgia as a poignant miscarriage
when I was seventeen I dropped out of high school and wrote my first poem
proud like my mother of her godless son
and without a hand to hold or a shoulder to cry upon
I went a state away and learned what it was like to fall asleep in someones yard and wake up with
just the itchiest third eye you could ever imagine
relentlessly refusing to become a casualty of four walled apathy
when I was eighteen I learned how to disconnect consciously
so by nineteen swallowing sixty plus robitussin gelcaps at once wasn't really a big deal
not as if I had a friend or even an acquaintance that was doing this
but I was willing to experiment and share both my hypothesis and conclusion with myself alone
by twenty it didn't frighten me to walk barefoot into a grocery store, pick up two carlo rossi jugs of wine and exit with a smile on my face
one time I managed to get caught; hustled into the security office by two guards of a jewel-osco
stunned by my calm
I realized then how entirely willing i was to acknowledge the consequences of my actions
it frightened even me a little bit
it didn't teach me to stop
not as if I could justify what I was doing ethically or morally
and although I won't eat meat or eggs or drink milk and can't eat ice cream
because I cannot justify those things morally
disconnect plays an incredibly large role in my life
when I was younger, I couldn't understand how my parents managed to miss so many things that were happening around them
whether it be me jumping off of a diving board or riding by no handed for the first time
a person on the side of the road holding a ridiculous sign or lightening in the sky
my father, night after night after night looking through the refrigerator for the ketchup
when it was always directly in front of his fucking face
my mother looking for the remote or her purse, asking other people to help her because she is going to be late
this shit was always right out in the open
as if they were looking directly through them purposefully
I could never understand it
I remember I would blur my vision purposefully
I'd been doing this since I was very young
unfocusing my eyes
and I would look out the car window or in the refrigerator and unfocus my eyes a little bit and then a little bit more and then a whole lot
and wonder which one was like the ones my parents were seeing
wondering where this disconnect was between what they were seeing and what they were thinking
it wasn't as if their prescription glasses were failing
since I've turned 21, I continue to take my groceries without paying
my eyesight is embarrassingly poor
without insurance
not making rent
there's no way in hell I could reasonably afford a pair of glasses
lately I can feel it getting worse
I can't tell if the cute girl across the street that I'm trying to make eye contact with is actually a cute boy
and my eyesight is directly effected by my intoxication on a sliding scale
so when I decide I need another bottle of gin after I've polished off this and I make my way over to jewel
standing in between aisles before I put it in my bag and exit
there's always this moment where I'm using my periphery
to contemplate what is happening or what is about to happen down past the endcap on my left
and past the endcap on my right
and i realize that I can only very barely see anything at all
I catch a reflection of myself in the freezer aisle
and I think
this is what it must be like for my parents
the less they can see
the easier it is to get away with not paying attention
whether it be to their behaviour
their children
their coworkers
Their parents
whether it be conscious or subconscious
this is what it must be like
I should probably see a therapist
or at least get some god damn glasses
disconnect plays an incredibly large role in my life

Monday, November 2, 2009

if you could you would draw outside of your lines
and instead of trying
get right onto knowing and being
that group of things you need just to see
that you've been waiting to find hiding behind your own eyes
or dug up in a logan square park crying for months at a time

without even knowing

I spend weeks here and there disconnecting
a journal knows maybe half of me
if I can hide from myself accidentally
imagine who I am to the rest of the people
whose relationships I've grown so good at ignoring without knowing
the time he spent in spain that we spent growing
the fred's mother leaving a wake of upset stomachs to match her own
while dylan jones relearns to walk under the weight of his home
we can get together once a month and know how much we need one another
haven't seen ian in an eon but I keep my right eye on his heart like a brother
along with a couple more who I shall not name
so that the last time I see peter he's on his face
and G whispers in my ear to go fuck myself
so now I think it's this place but what if it's just me
no matter how mean-hearted her whisper must be
it ricochets around inside of my head for more than weeks
until it comes back finally, tired and beat
to remind me I've hurt some people
that the hooks I use to bait friends can be too sharp sometimes
that being lonely and miserable never was charming

but you need to know that I am trying
that I'm tired of feeling insane
and if I knew the difference between acting like myself
and being me


I would use all the help I could get.

Friday, October 30, 2009

what if the wars we wage are on ourselves
and the distance between you and I never melts
because it never can;

if the most obvious truth is that
the distance between you and me
never is
never was
and never can be;

and in it's stead
we spend entire lives
trying to know
the fleeting feeling
of just being?

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

the man who has to live with hindsight
had a steady-bad-habit diet that wore him to toothpicks
bore him like newsprint from vagrant palms
and if that's the inevitable for a man who knows,
I feel sorry for you.

but check this in
life is never about knowing
it's about learning
the difference between being and becoming
that thing you have where you can't understand how much what you are experiencing is affecting
stuck so curiously and firmly within the present
begging yourself to find a way to get away with anything else
how many times a day you lose yourself entirely in parked eyes at cross streets
lately it's been empathizing with trees
notice the difference between a swimmer and his water was never such a distance?

dark hair sits down next to me on the train
the entire time their arm brushes mine
and knowing I don't even need to see their face to feel something other than just alive
attempting desperately to connect with any single thing to validate my own reality

this morning I nearly drown in tunnel-vision buildings
I suppose I can walk back with my eyes closed,
but bury my head in a hole from my heart to china, on my own?
I don't know.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

for a second you are an animated
middle aged
rich caucasian
whose worries rest between
subtle frequencies on his car stereo
blaring traffic, weather and sports scores on it's eights-
(it would seem you're almost two entire minutes behind)
(the slowest watch you've had since junior high)
-and the perfect bottle of wine for overpriced chinese leftovers
as you find your usual right
your gut whispers to your brain
and instead you keep driving

considering all of the mistakes I've made
I'm lucky to be alive
but I sure don't ever think it
considering the way I've treated those in my life
who mean more to me than everything
it's hard to believe I have anything

blocks out of your way you find a dark space
pointed asymmetry, bricks, and escapes

in that alley I took an extra big whiff of the evening
each nostril reminding me it was nostalgia that lead me here
still not sure what it was that would ask me to leave
rotting charts
and graphs we made
to prove to one another our ideas match what we thought might pass as actions
left for transients and garbage men

but what if it's not just our feet that are wet anymore?
maybe we aren't almost there
maybe we should be scared

now tell your children.

go home and tell your children.

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Today I made a list of importants
it had food and water and habits and
the next time I walk away from myself
I'll make sure I find a mirror
climb in behind me
today I made a list of importants
it had dreams
and everything
and nothing
the second thing my father ever told my mother
was to never teach him a lesson
today I made a list of importants
it was nothing like this

today I found a list of importants
crumpled and torn in an aisle between produce
it had food and water, bad habits
and somehow I'd knew I'd tried this
I knew what it was like
four or five seconds in
spun like catacomb
wrapped like an aunt's christmas tree remnants
aim for the bottom

yesterday afternoon
somebody in a serious tone
turned seriously to ask me if
I'd be born
be, not been, as if I hadn't already
maybe wanted to, but needed help.

Sunday, July 19, 2009

pretty soon you'll be overstepping your need-for-validation lines
letting everyone know how lonely and miserable you are in a manner so much less charming
you'll need to start baiting hooks to keep friends.

I'd recommend you start in the deep end, that way by the time things start to seem shallow
you've either given up already or have drown entirely.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

the tiniest pair of shoes we could find you weren't really shoes at all
we grabbed them that week the weather stopped
six or seven days without so much as a breeze
it took a small hole, so that we could leave the rest of ourselves before we returned
so here they are
laces like silly wet spaghetti strings
two worn heels to match your dreams and an upside down tongue for your ideals
and though it may seem the result of our work remain halfway concealed
wait for their dare
and close your eyes for what feels like the warmest amount of time
until everything you can taste is pink
and everything you can feel is white
and your only smell peptides

wait.. there it is..
breaking.. breaking news:
your parents are children
whose parents were children
defined by their habits and what they internalized
so now you can either
suck it the fuck up
or continue on
an orphan
homesick for it's foreskin

Monday, June 22, 2009

I'm having trouble
I can't compartmentalize
am I the reason wolf parade recorded kissing the beehive?
the reason pitchfork's best new tracks make my own blood boil?
and why you enjoy novelty songs about combination restaurants?
you must be mocking me.
that has to be it; how else could you?

a man walks past me lifting his walker slightly above the sidewalk
his name tag calls him "john rash"
johnny's having trouble
you can see him internalize
shit, even I'd have a walker otherwise
it's why when I push my child in her stroller I talk on my cellphone
give my baby the impression I'm talking to her
confuse her just enough
work my cellphone arm a strong muscle
to impress the rest of you
caress your attitude toward being alive
canonize my nine to five opportunities
fit myself into a paradigm of calvin klein and jewelry
perfume from a room without a view
and a credit card that matches your lazy eyes
left in pews
struggle without their toes

Friday, June 19, 2009

Right now you're thinking to yourself,

"I hope this is even half as cathartic for Norm McDonald as it is for me,"

him watching with his arms crossed,
you crushing a fluorescent lightbulb onto a series of colorful rugs you pulled across the alter
their shards illuminating the air between yourself and just pew
after pew
after pew
of the most confused and confusing.

Somewhere within there, two men decide this was a bad idea, and you run, literally grasping at that same air in front of you; pulling at it with each step feeling a little slower, and a lot more silly. But if you could just get a grip- if you could get even so much as a handful, you would tug it like a rope, pull yourself forward - but instead you will swim toward nothing - instead, you are stuck, spinning slightly.