BY joots

10/01 Direct Link
kind of dull, slightly sick, waif and absent, writing about writing instead of writing; reporting, fact-checking, outlining, amusing, challenging, sketching, questioning and confusing, not creating. not staking. not stretching corner to corner, "I'll take it." working its business, timed and reasoned, procuring sticky bits of flesh from page to bubble up and study later, possibly potion. is it an altered state you're in; writing under your own influence? can I get a hit? no more reflections, tension between the planes, just shards under foot and my heel to the ground, taking up space and using the words that suit me
10/02 Direct Link
How frustrating it is to be on the same page but not in the same place; to recognize each word as she speaks it, your own lips on the cusp of forming the sound, a bit staggered perhaps because you would have pronounced it differently. You're told there are no wrong answers, no stupid questions, and yet you know that even in this space knowledge and experience equals authority. No amount of soft eyes and softer voices can cover up your grunts because this is how it comes out, in spit and fit. All these breasts are no less mothering.
10/03 Direct Link
And then a few well-placed sentiments and you're sisters again. Not a misunderstanding, not even a shift in the breeze, just perspectives running parallel as they have all along. The only difference being that she opens her home and you do not. You bring things, you offer gifts, you're on time and respectful of her belongings. You sit on the floor and offer others the chair. You aren't as comfortable as she'd like you to be but when you look about the circle the two of you are the only ones not wearing socks and for some reason that matters.
10/04 Direct Link

Unfamiliar, at first her own, its shake and slide. Then the others, seemingly in opposition, but oddly reminiscent of her own. Strange gratification, this back and forth; tiny morsels passed from hand to hand, then hand to mouth and finally tongue to lip. Sitting on the edge of her ear in catches and whispers and sighs. And she tracing a finger up each spine, her lap inches from theirs. Stirring. Like first kisses laced with hesitation and intention; a distracting sleight of hand, depositing deep that which will spill onto their pillows and sheets some night soon.

I read tonight.

10/05 Direct Link

It's best first thing in the morning.

Against my mother's wishes I reach up and touch the side of the tent, letting the dew stream down my finger and into my palm. Now I've done it, I think with a smirk.

I turn to look at you, one leg out on top of your sleeping bag, zipper still taut between the split, the pull resting cold against your inner thigh. Some people's eyes disappear when they sleep but yours are just as full.

I'd said, "You don't put a drunk in a bar alone with only a wench to serve."

10/06 Direct Link
I turn my attentions back to the tent and collect more moisture. It eases through in pulses, my arm swallowing throatfuls of a long, long drink. It's easy this time of day to slip in and out, where comfort reclines inside and all around. Thick with comfort. So I watch the water vein me and don't think twice carrying some to your parched lips. Your eyes jerk open but you must have found me hauntingly familiar right then, too, because you take my fingers and palm to your mouth and drink. I begin to lick the side of the tent.
10/07 Direct Link
Ugh, you know that sound. Blinds fluttering and chiming, slapping against windows. 3 am. You don't want to get up, like a pee, but there are lives at stake. Or is it that you're worried the neighbours will wake blaming you for that rapid-fire succession of crashes. So, you throw back the sheet and stumble into view of trees cracked backwards under force of knee, leaves screaming skywards, Uncle! Uncle!, and now you're awake. Grabbing your babies from the sills in armfuls, taking cover in the bathroom, shut in tight, damping and dusting each appendage as if dressing a wound.
10/08 Direct Link
I had a dream that I came within two feet of her mouth. Longer descriptions have been used to describe it's presence than the reviews that garner her book jackets. From pictures it reminded me of a Jack-Nicholson-as-Joker grin, but in person it was animated by Jan Svankmajer, "Alchemist of the Surreal"; a fleshy ball of clay moulded into her gorgeous puss, opening to swallow me whole. I settled on the crushed red velvet of her tongue and tugged at her uvula. A subtle breeze stirred; a distant rumble, like a subway coming up the track. I wanted to straddle.
10/09 Direct Link
Waking up, my body's been betrayed and bloated for hours now. Teeth sore, checking for dust; cake in the back of my throat. An all round unsettled feeling of business. My bed's no place for business. Feel like I should be getting down to some but don't know where to start. I half expect the phone to ring, the fax the spin, something to tell me I've broken a promise, should've been their ages ago, should've brought what I said I would. I really feel like I've let someone down. Lost in the folds of Dream, to catch up soon.
10/10 Direct Link
Sex. Performance and desire. What turns you on. What gets you off. Your innermost passions and those you know nothing of – yet. A collection of likes and dislikes. Surprises, both inconsequential and shattering. The way someone unties your boot and your whole life changes. How you look at yourself in the bathroom mirror, eyes steady and tracing lips, teeth, nose, eyes, cheekbones, ears, neck, shoulders (of your mother), chest. Hands slender and long, each finger with a mind of its own touching your face. You're a lover but you'd never know it by this rancid little shit piece of writing.
10/11 Direct Link
He's strapped to the side of a truck doing a hand-held of the two characters in the cab. The voice-over says a bunch of stuff about being led by your desires and he references the shake of his shot saying as soon as you try something it becomes extreme and therefore a style BUT as soon as you stylize something you naturally want control of it. I thought that was straight up how I think about my writing – the second I think I'm onto something I try to figure it out rather than just rolling with it. Relax and breathe.
10/12 Direct Link
You know how you see people in the street and you make up lives for them? What if you really knew? My finger twitches on the pen cap but there's still a moment's hesitation because I believe it so deeply. When I see that old woman getting out the drivers education car I know that her husband had a sudden coronary attack and that she hates this more than anything because running errands was all he was ever good for. When I write it's not the shame of telling my truth, it's the guilt of spilling yours. Do you mind?
10/13 Direct Link
Sometimes I think about that place just inside you, where I'm palm up and fingers reaching. Not often but occasionally I imagine my thumb retreating and one swift movement, snapping a fistful from the thickest part of a chocolate bunny, crushed and melted into my life and love lines. Or grasping the other hand behind your neck and swinging you circular, airplane. Anything to show you how much you move me; how the weight of you in my hand is all I know. I keep my face to your belly and elbow to the mattress hoping you don't look down.
10/14 Direct Link

Every once in awhile I fire off an email that I probably should've sat on awhile longer. Right now I'm stewing over a right to property and the mistake that led to it belonging to someone else other than me because at one time I said it was cool. So there it is – not mine anymore. And I get to be the one to sort through it all. And feel guilt. No wonder there are so many control freaks in the world. If I'm going to be taken out of context, goddammit, I can do it myself.

It's all fiction.

10/15 Direct Link
Antique table; an awkward gift from Mother to Grandma who used it only to hold Kleenex and the Walkman, until she safety-pinned that to the bed. Now it holds a knife from North Yemen, a prayer wheel from India, a wooden card holder, pencil poised and score sheet filled from her last game with Harold. Inside, tapes filled with my voice and a cassette of 'Spirit in the Sky' looped on both sides for her to listen to till the end. A bottle of perfume, its scent enough to knock me up against the wall stands at the very back.
10/16 Direct Link

Some think music is the great equalizer; others god and fear.

Laundromats. You are forced to bear witness to things you couldn't otherwise imagine.

I dated a girl in Buffalo who used one. One late night an old woman came in and went to the middle of the room. Just stood there. The reaction to her was quite violent but it wasn't until my girlfriend elbowed me and nodded towards the floor that I understood why. Steaming lava streaming heavily from her tattered, bell-bottomed, pant leg. People were lifting their legs onto their chairs. I've never seen anything like it.

10/17 Direct Link
Beer and bass conspire against my groin. I watch your lips move in an effort to hear what you're saying and I can see you think this is flattering. Except that I'm teetering on the edge of consciousness. Have you been with a woman yet? You're a smart young thing. Not to reduce you to sex but your little dance is taking too long. Your technique will get better in time. For now you need to give me a lift home where I'll masturbate you in the front seat, leaving you in the drive to think about it some more.
10/18 Direct Link

tocsin puissant aplomb opportune renascent cursory proponent fettle numinous evince recondite pelf flagitious auspicious deliquesce prescient indigent palpable billingsgate anodyne schadenfreude euphonious quaff ostensible recrimination malleable perdurable onus triskaidekaphobia bravado littoral redivivus paladin bootless gimcrack munificent hobnob fiduciary indelible fortuitous diktat boulevardier convivial leferdemain foment concatenation parsimonious moiety venial accede portend chthonic mercurial ineffable adventitious omnipresent gourmand crepuscular exalt contradistinction soporific deride laconic

i know the only way i'll learn them is if i type them out. consider this homework; a rough sketch of my busy brain trying to learn a new language. now, please, can I delete the folder?

10/19 Direct Link
At the cottage. It's warm now but last night we huddled under blankets, doubled up on socks, and leapt out of bed every few minutes to stave off foot cramps. In the early morning hours I finally ran a bath and stood in it, arms folded, hands pitted, track pants rolled like I was digging for clams and not liking it one bit. Now every sniffle and run betrays what was relatively good health upon arriving. And neither of us wants to relive this time last year when somewhere a fawn farted and the power went out. Boil the kettle.
10/20 Direct Link
The strangest weather bowled through here yesterday. Intermittent sheets of wind and rain swept across the bay, back and forth, like a stage curtain signaling a change in scene. I pocketed my camera and slid down the hill to where the water has retreated revealing a clear line of shore in between docks. I took cover under an overhang of branches with another pass and looked up and down and around at all the knotted, gnarled, bound bits of nature. Leathered leaves; the rotted edges of birch trunk punctured repeatedly by downy woodpeckers; clam shells chipped like cheap nail polish.
10/21 Direct Link

Frustrated and defrosting the freezer, I skipped ahead to the part where I became an ice pick. Look at me go, a Superman of superhuman proportions, arms stretched deep into the beast's belly, travelling blindly farther, farther; grasping a loose edge and prying it back in one satisfactory sheet, freeing the small child/animal/hot dame caught behind its gleaming surface.

Then the pain, oh, the pain. Yellow rubbered glove thrown off – I have delicate skin to protect – and thick red spilling from fingertip. Why, oh why, must I be the heroine of all things domesticated?

Tonight you get your own dinner.

10/22 Direct Link

I'm writing a story that's a little dark for this vanilla girl. I turned to nature but instead of meadows and flower petals my pages are now filled with snails stabbing each other before mating and male drones exploding their genitals into the queen bee and then sizzling dead to the ground below.

Under cover down by the shore I was taken by all the evidence that Fall and a slimming waterline exposes; branches stripped and held under by vines, little bits of bone cracked along a bend where they tried to get to the surface for one last breath.

10/23 Direct Link

I'm on a pulled-out futon with another woman and her boyfriend squished together so that I'm as close to her as he is. She keeps her face turned to me in deep conversation, her lips brushing mine when another body pushes in and the quick flutter of tongues when the lights suddenly dim, tips of fingers entwined.

We stood in the doorway where my mother waited in an idling car. We hugged heavy and I whispered that I'd hold her like I wanted to if I could. Then I woke up. And tried in vain to get back to her.

10/24 Direct Link


I'm so tired these days. Does this happen to you? Do you have insanely fitful nights of characters and narratives and obsession? ‘If I don't get it down right now…' Just wrecked.

Of course, it would help if I actually recognized half of what hits the page. I'm asking all the right questions, surrendering all the old habits, teasing the words into new meaning but, damn, if I still don't have a clue. I'm not that lost, I suppose. It's just…I'm so tired, you know? The head. She don't wanna stop.

Thank goodness, only eight more words to go.

10/25 Direct Link

I feel fresh. The difference sleep makes - the difference being that I'm rid of a piece of writing for awhile; waiting for feedback. It could be incentive to keep at it, get it done, always be working towards the finish line. Or, I could just quit this nonsense and go to work for someone else, let them make the decisions and apply my talents to saving the day, pulling miracles out of my ass, scripting two clever lines for the cover of someone else's book.

Or I could just be tired and headachey and toothachey and angsty and fucked-upey.

10/26 Direct Link

I like the sort of night when it's raining and you're wearing the comfortable shoes and the jeans that fall right and the cozy sweater that smells good when it gets wet. I like the sort of night when a warm smile greets you, takes your umbrella and beckons you up the staircase into a room of sparkly bits; a candle here, an oil lamp there. I like the sort of night in which the cheese and olives and wine and scones have just as much to offer as the two friends deep in pleasant conversation.

I liked last night.

10/27 Direct Link
Had a little, but not too much, but not so little that I don't still want a rubbery greasy combo crowned with goo and towered between crunchy toasted goodness. Not so little that I don't resent the extra seconds earlier my eyes could have opened to make it happen. Not so little that whatever we've got here ain't gonna cut it. Not so little that it won't stop me from buying what I need to make it myself, and hashbrowns, too. Not so little that these words aren't punishment. Not so little that I won't ever do it again – ever.
10/28 Direct Link

I only held onto the book because it was given to me by someone who thought they knew better. For years I stuffed it among the others until finally taking it out, prepared for enlightenment. I resented it more than ever, thumbing the pages to a snapshot; an old B&W from the early seventies of a crowd gathered tippy-toed and trying to see something we can't. I thought it had appropriate meaning and tacked it above where I write.

I've only just realized that one of the men absolutely towers over everyone else, their shoulders barely reaching his waist.


10/29 Direct Link

It seems I have a choice to make. It seems that writing and writing who I am are two different things. It seems that my perspective, history, experimentation – my risks – are to be valued in the voices of others but not my own. We buy watercoloured books not because we'll read them but because they'll look nice on a shelf. Nice and muted.

Is it class? - growing up with food and clothes - that makes me stubborn? Makes me think my voice is worth something? Have you heard me? You gotta love this voice.

Seems you have the choice.

10/30 Direct Link
Public spaces? With public people? All right out there, in the open, being…public? I hate them. I hate the bartender most of all. I don't want a mixed drink, I tip better than that frosted goof in the tight pants, and I don't want to go home with you. I'm here for the readings. I'm here to be surprised – pleasantly – so I'd like a beer please so I can go lean and laugh in all the right places; find myself in casual conversation about nothing spoken, nonetheless, in genuinely interested tones because that happens when you actually leave the house.
10/31 Direct Link

The performance of a writer. The tools of the trade.

I only noticed them part way through the evening; and then only at loose intervals. Had she been a post-op I would have stared relentlessly, comfortable in my curiousity, if not awkward in my stir.

The words were impassioned, truthful, familiar. The mic traced a thick shadow from her lips down her neck straight to her belly button, right between. I couldn't believe her luck.

And then it happened. I was aching milky white.

I've really enjoyed writing these words. Thanks for having me.

And, so, with that – the end.