Saturday, December 29, 2007

5 scenes from the past week

The best Christmas presents are:

Habanero mango hot sauce

Mixed CDs

Smelly oils and Swiss creams

Homemade cookies


1) Fifteen year old boys are easy to impress. It just takes breasts and a few simple guitar chords. Driving back from Connecticut we oooo with Bono and sing of love turning to rust.

2) At Simone's house Sam and I get in a screaming fight with Tom Daley about Lord of the Rings. Some kid named Robert makes various homosexual accusations and I challenge him to a duel. Brian backs me up. "Elves and Dwarves can't do that! That's like putting a square peg in a round hole!" Sam and I dig through Simone's curry and pick out all the chicken. We talk with our mouths full about the elusive green wizards. Finally to settle some dispute, Sam pulls out Sindarin etymology, and the conversation ends.

3) Walking back from the salon in Quincy, Derek and I see Alana and Tony in O'Brien's. They wave and come out. "We have beer," Derek says. "Come over." Everyone comes. We drink beer and whiskey. Talk about Alana's show and red dresses. Tony tries to teach me how to blow smoke rings, but those damned American Spirits produce smoke too thin.

4) For a week blood is running from a place where blood should not run. I decide I have cancer. I will fight, I say. I still will not die until I write the Great American Novel. Then the blood stops and I have years left still.

5) Jeff's friend says she likes my taste in furniture. I say I didn't choose anything I own, I just inherited it from dead people. It's fate that has the taste, not me.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

dour and ecstatic

Once I wanted to believe in God. Once I wanted eternity. I wanted truth. I needed, needed to know. I talked to priests, to monks, to professors, to scientists. I wanted answers. I wanted someone, anyone, to know, to tell me, and no one did and no one could.

My mom never brought me to church. I was never raised to depend on anything unseen except for some swirling amorphous universal logic of cause and effect and balance. As a young adult I groped, dug, and came out with no answers, just a comforting apathy. Just a sense of restless, hungry peace.

I don't believe in anything. I don't really disbelieve in God or ghosts or karma or what have you, I just don't really care. All that matters, all I've found I believe in is love, is how you treat the people you love, how well you love, and how you are loved. I believe in art insofar as it is love. I believe in science and religion insofar as they are love.

I understand nothing about anything, and neither do you, and it doesn't particularly matter anyway. My worth does not depend on an immortal, ectoplasmic soul, on an omniscient watching eye, on a fatalistic plan, or on random, purposeless chance. My worth is not in my IQ or my measurements or the straightness of my nose or my talent.

My worth is in my laugh. My laugh carries my love. It is ephemeral and eternal. I will live as well as I can. I will love as well as I can. What else are we breathing for, anyway?

We all will die someday, and therefore, we are free.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

thoughts from the shore by the sea

There are places I never thought I would go growing up. Why would I ever see the Alps? The rock of Gibraltar? Why would I ever be in Cape Cod?

We grow up in Indiana and we hear about places we will never see. No time for travel when you marry your college sweetheart and buy a house at 22. Oh you will see places when your children are older. You will save the money and bring them to Paris and they will see the Louvre. They will pick apart their food and ask for pizza. When you are old and they are up out of college and the house, maybe you will fly to Egypt and see the pyramids. Maybe you will go to Rome and see the Colosseum with your wife and your walker. Take your shriveled picture in front of Stone Henge. Your old blue eye will drop a tear as you thank god you saw this thing before you die.

I may not be old. I probably will not be old. But god the slow big snowflakes in silent Provincetown on the spider leg trees creeping around the New England houses in the tiny streets as I sit and drink coffee and write a new world and the wind by the grey crashing Atlantic on the footprintless beach or chess with heavy wooden pieces in the dimlit bar that is older than anyone you ever met in your family. It is enough to be twenty-five and beautiful and here.

I must be doing something right.

Monday, December 10, 2007

I am off tomorrow to flaunt my heterosexuality in Provincetown. Keep Boston warm for me.

Sunday, December 9, 2007

Sam takes me to his office holiday party where I drink the open bar and eat the free tenderloins. I get in a fight about Ezra Pound with a dude everyone later tells me they had bets I would punch in the face. I pop with a fork the balloon with the picture of the boss's face on it. We dance and go afterward to do Irish car bombs with the Indian kid and the kid with one leg. The kid with one leg agrees with me that life is tenuous, so you might as well smoke. His friend shot off his leg when he was fourteen with a twelve-gage shotgun. He is deft with his crutches. He does not need to make up stories. The Indian kid and I talk about Ganesh and the caste system. He is a Brahman. I say, of course you are, you're in this country. He laughs. Sam and I try to dance proper but he elbows me in the nose when he spins me. The streets are cold and I'm not used to wearing heels. I love Boston anyway.

Friday, December 7, 2007

fear in winter

Jme's feature was fucking amazing. Everyone in fantastic form. Prohibition repeal day it was and a swing band in 20's era costume pulls up in Rolls Royce while we're out smoking and I Charleston with Artie on the sidewalk.

Say what you will, it's good not to be the best writer in the room. How else will you ever work?

So many things are going so well right now I have trouble trusting life. After the past year of no and sweat and alone and plane rides to get away and phone calls to other time zones and too much caffeine and steady numbing pills and fetal positions on Friday nights I cannot really get my feet stuck in happy. I dance in a tornado of new friends and loving but then when it's quiet and I'm back in my room I think of the people I've shared bed with and something is it fear is it loss dulls the flutters in my chest. Somewhere I maybe feel the bristling spine of the scared and lonely young thing who could not do it, could never have done it, but I put her away and keep working.

I will never go back to being afraid, I tell myself. All courage is is setting steadily one foot in front of the other.

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

How many bottles of Wild Turkey does it take to spark an all-night existential conversation?

a recipe:

1 bottle Wild Turkey

1 pack Marlboro Reds

2 disenchanted Bostonian writers named Jade and Sam

Monty Python's the Meaning of Life

Mix writers together in small room full of books. Add The Meaning of Life. Gradually fold in Wild Turkey. Pepper with Marlboro Reds to taste.

Prep time: approx 7 hours.

Serves humanity.

Sunday, December 2, 2007

Lady A is a mitzvah. In her house we eat warm chili and smoke. It is too cold outside even to see your breath in the air and our hands go all dead. We wear our coats indoors in New England.

Tony curls and coils chains on a bald head. We all have voices that occupy space. What I say, if there are those out there who get off on girls popping balloons, then all things are possible and there is no reason to fear.

When the temperature falls this far I scrawl stolen lines in my Mead notebook crouched by the radiator. In the morning I think why does my neck hurt and then I remember it is from his teeth like mad like the last Yes. in Ulysses and I rub it out and go for pancakes and coffee.

I have never felt winter like this. I will not wear pants until I have to. I will fill my lungs with ice until my capillaries turn to crystal spiderwebs. I want her sleep to live in me.