he says I’m trouble exactly like you did. I’m trouble and too good. It’s eerie.

In my dreams I’m climbing. My hands grip wooden railings and the edges of bricks. I pull myself over balconies and stand on the knobs of doors. I brush flakes of paint from my hands onto my pants and look over a small inlet to apartments across the water. There is a light there, blocked by a friend I only know when I’m asleep. I think routes, maps that mean escape and freedom and eluding pursuit. Up, I dream, up and over and that way. I am rescuing myself from the ground.

The graffiti in the washroom reads DO IT BECAUSE IT’S FASHIONABLE? VOMIT! WHY NOT? in thin black permanent marker on the door. Later, for a split second, I think I recognize the hand-writing as I walk by a man sitting fetal on the street, rocking back and forth, holding a sign in the air with an empty paper coffee cup. HIV POSITIVE & HUNGRY, PLEASE GIVE CHANGE. I am wrong, of course, it is merely that they are both messy block letters, both made in staining black marker. I am walking too fast, not fast enough. We miss the light and have to wait. My wallet is thick with coins, but there are none spare. I am poor. The quarters are for laundry, the dimes are for carefully counting out at the check-out counter one by one by one as I try to pay for a bag of oranges. I don’t feel guilty, but I turn my head from him as we stop and talk. I want to block my brother from his line of sight. He is eighteen, but he is still too young.

It’s official now that I’m tangled with a hotel ghost, brass numbers drifting through my blood. There was A Talk last night that mostly involved Kyle apologizing. “Where will you be tonight?” “Vanishing.” It was a portrait of everything dysfunctional between us. Ourselves as hungry children who deny that we’re stealing. He said, “like” and “you know what I mean?” a lot. I nodded into his shoulder and repeatedly asked him “why?”

We’re a gordian knot on the bed. “I’ve got too much to figure out right now.” A train-wreck year. “Let me explain mine.” Every five sentences, we’re laughing a little, he’s unconsciously kissing the top of my head. We tell the right kind of stories. “See, this I can live with. This is really nice.” I say yes. “More is too much. You scare me.” “See me twice a week,” I say. He says he’s not sure.

I believe him implicitly when he says I’m scary. Everyone worth knowing says I’m scary.

The summary is a red flag warning that he’s unreliable company, that he’s not ready for four letter words. I can live with that. “Come back to bed with your dumped non-girlfriend.” He says, “See, you’re scaring me again.” and stops his mouth with mine. My gold lipstick dusts his cheeks and the tip of his nose.

After, he spreads his hands with an expression on his face that I can’t identify. “Where did you come from?” I can’t see him, is he kidding? My glasses are off, I’m too blind. I lean down, spreading wool across his shoulders, my weight on my hands. “What do you mean?” “It’s a good thing, believe me.” I’m grinning. This is the same man I had a water fight with in the bed an hour earlier. The sheets are still damp with beer. He found out where I’m ticklish. “Well, where did you come from?” “Here,” his hands point out, “planet Earth.” I tell him I fell from the moon. It feels true.

trying to remember the worth of birth control when all I can think of are his unfair hands

Someone has rewritten the words to Gibert and Sullivan’s “I am the Very Model of a Modern Major General” as “I am the very model of a Singularitarian,” with lyrics celebrating the drive to transcend the flesh.

I am the very model of a Singularitarian
I’m combination Transhuman, Immortalist, Extropian,
Aggressively I’m changing all my body’s biochemistry
Because my body’s heritage is obsolete genetically,
Replacing all the cells each month it’s here just temporarily
The pattern of my brain and body’s where there’s continuity,
I’ll try to improve these patterns with optimal biology,
(“But how will I do that? I need to be smarter. Ah, yes…”)
I’ll expand my mental faculties by merging with technology,
Expand his mental faculties by merging with technology,
Expand his mental faculties by merging with technology
Expand his mental faculties by merging with technology.

There’s an MP3 link too.

Today was spent re-arranging the shop I work in, hauling large heavy awkward pieces of pale laminated wood around into hopefully better positions. We need a curtain now. A curtain, a ladder, some screws, and some paint. It’s nice to have carte blanche. I’ve been told that I’m to treat the store as my own, all my decisions will be supported. It’s interesting, like an experiment in culpability. How responsible am I? How capable?

“I’ve listened to your music, seen the way you dress. I trust you.”

I’ve had relationships based on less.

Remember the water? It sprayed like insane rain, kamikaze airborne water trying to reclaim the shore from the sky and bring it back into the ocean. I was so glad you ran through it after me, it felt like a victory. Breakfast, then sitting on damp moss, so British Columbia, so everything about this place that’s sometimes nice. Secrets, so many secrets. I miss you. You’re around and then not, all at once. I remember kissing you, lying with my body pressed against yours on a volcanic outcropping of rock, all soft cliffs and too much ocean view. All those trees. I saw you watching me trip down the path like a child, I watched you smile. How much that meant to me, I’m not sure I can say. It had been so long since I’d felt like anyone wanted me, like I could make someone happy. Therapy for both of us, I suppose. A furtive thing we could call our own. An epoch passed as we climbed the earth.

Evenings like this I wish you were here, free to sleep in my bed, be warm for me in the chill.

My lovers last year, all of them left silver hair on my clothes. Spiderwebs that tied joy down, transmuting me into an alchemist of golden moments, but my last year was longer ago than that. I think of new years in terms of fall. Leaves and seasons changing, halting, freezing. Anything after Hallowe’en is this year, anything before is last. It might be in November this year, my annual transfer from them into now. We met in August, we began in August. The year before last, something new, a man, a burning furnace hanging in the ether, changing my perception of time. Everything counted from the day I took a worried picture that my friend has hung on his wall in Montreal.

This year it might be somewhere in November where it shifts. Before there was my first love returned to me, too poetically pleasing to last or be real. My theater painter, my silly Gavool fool. “Have you met my underage girlfriend?” A genius clown that handed me so gracefully to California (Uber Alles). Flash: tied with ribbons, merry christmas, the light from the window before we moved the bed, a thin string glittering from one thing to another, my decision. LAX = empty regret. Last winter spent in Orange County, adrift in rain and lost without direction. My lovers, before they didn’t trust me, they didn’t tell me until it’s too late.

Next year. New Year, December. My hanged moon, strung up on charming wire, so full before it waned so suddenly. He fell from the sky and destroyed all the tides. I fell down and drowned and my morning star, my most precious thing, my evening dream who surrounded me with words, abandoned me after burning me with a small handful of flame. Hours counted like suicidal moths. Hating how easy I must be. Fifteen people dying in six months. All the ways to count a year. Two jobs gone, three, a night of fire where I finally died. There was no vessel to carry me. When the apple fell, there was no one to capture it, no hand to interrupt its crash to the ground. Everything all at once, so dreadful.

I’m older now, I can feel it for the first time in my life. I see lines inside my face, miniature scars, a map of where I used to live. Pictures from last year, they look too happy to be me, too young and yet, here I am, feeling alright with life again. It took me eight months. It took me a year, a failed one night stand, and a married conductor. It took music and getting away from here, a refreshing life out of the small town. It took the sky and blood and tears and feeling too alone. It was Ryan, it was walking into the water on the night of fireworks and resisting the urge to let my head go under. It was so many things, saving a life on New years, never seeing that girl again. Slapping Matthew, dancing alone, dancing with Kyle. It was myself, finally, and the memories of starry skies that brought me back to me.

Though mostly it was the conductor.
&nbsp &nbsp &nbsp &nbsp the good ones are just like that
“No, my lord, unless I might have another for working-days: your grace is too costly to wear every day.
But, I beseech your grace, pardon me: I was born to speak all mirth and no matter.”

never get that anymore

01 – yes
Originally uploaded by Foxtongue.

A few years of violence and now I flinch in my sleep when the maid comes to collect towels in the hall. Waking comes slowly, but comfortably. In spite of the lingering memories of being six, hotels almost always feel like home. An acoustic Life on Mars is blending seamlessly in my head with the police car siren dopplering past as I open my eyes and look at the alarm clock with serious doubt. It’s begun blaring terrible R&B hip-hop rip-offs of uninspired 90’s music. Terrible. Unforgivable. It’s nine o’clock. I slide out of the blood messy sheets and get up to turn it off, knocking a pack of cigarettes off the bed. It’s a good place to be, I think, picking it up and putting it back. I understand how to fit here.

My clothes are over the back of a little chair, except for my bra, which has somehow found it’s way into a plastic milk crate of three-quarters full of funk records. I look in the mirror as I pull my shirt over my head and ridiculous hair. It’s lined with photographs of Kyle with his baby son. They look happy together, the smiles almost match. It’s obvious that his child is paramount. He wears dog-tags around his neck with both their names engraved. I like them, how they chime musically when he moves. I like almost all of him, how he laughs easily and sincerely, the way our hands wind affectionately together when we’re talking. His body feels like candles. That warm glow particular to wick’d fire, as if I can taste a pool of light on his tongue. His body is that way too, though not his movement. There’s a smooth weight to it reminiscent of heavy bronze sculpting wax. I like how he purrs and teases me for my taxidermy, makes silly jokes about carrying around giant skinned mink to terrorize the front desk clerks with. It’s refreshingly supportive. Exactly the kind of pleasing mockery I require. It makes me bury my head in his neck with unfeigned delight.

The night before, we’re lying in bed and he asks me if I’ve seen his tattoo. I sit up a little, “Where is it?” I’ve never seen it. “It’s a little scorpion, really intricate. I did it when I was in jail.” I start to ask why he was in jail, but he brings his left hand close to my face and I see a small dot of ink and start laughing. “See? It’s really detailed.” “Incredibly.”

His smile tells me he’s almost kidding as he explains that he was in for aiding and abetting a felon. Seems years ago some cops had shown up at a party and started rounding kids up in a rather typical Vancouver fashion. Kyle sneaked around them and pulled an arrested friend out of a cop car. They ran, banging open gates, running across yards, but eventually they hit a locked gate in a chain link fence that his friend couldn’t climb with the cuffs on. Kyle was caught two blocks later. They were held an extra half day because the cops thought they were jerks – they were put in separate cells, but as they could hear each other, they stayed up all night drumming on the black metal bed-frames loudly singing DAY-O, DA-AY-O, DAYLIGHT COME AN’ I WANNA GO HOME.

understand me, I’m not going to wire you shut

My invisible relationship continues. His son spent the weekend in the hospital. Last night I expected him to be home at seven and he wasn’t there by eight. I suspect there may have been a relapse. Either way, I’m worried. I feel now that I should have accepted the proffered key to his bedroom. Then I could at least sleep in his bed, play goldilocks and the sweet-hearted amateur DJ. It’s only a block away and our work schedules strangely match. He starts at five in the morning, I have to leave for work at ten to start at eleven. There’s enough time for sleep in there. In the evening he wakes up at five:thirty, I lock up at six. I could have set the alarm, rescued it from where he threw it if he hasn’t already. Red glowing lights made up by little bars in rows. It’s enough to make me smile. My clock is for the blind almost specifically. The dial is huge, blue, and exceedingly bright if I want it to be. I can read it from the head of my bed if I squint a little. A miracle clock, granting me time without eyes.

A week after NASA’s top climate scientist complained that the agency’s public-affairs office was trying to silence statements on global warming, the administrator, Michael D. Griffin, issued a statement yesterday calling for “scientific openness” throughout.
&nbsp &nbsp &nbsp “Remember there is no such thing as global warming. Use only space words. Don’t mention the big bang. NASA needs to teach more religion.”

We met again at the bus-stop yesterday. He bashfully idled out of the hotel as I was on my way to work and explained what his day was going to be. Last night I padded over at midnight in my barefeet and almost wasn’t let in by the nervous front desk clerk. (This morning, of course, he was incredibly friendly. I suspect my “position” logically asserted itself). It is refreshing to finally have a relationship not be that delightful and frustrating thing, a secret, (those were too many), but standing the confidence of being coupled on the strength of only a few encounters feels odd, as if I shouldn’t assume so much, though I know I am a fool to think so. Established is established, with no reason to justify calling or arriving at the door. In my long absence from these things, my natural inclinations have been eroded. I’ve forgotten that my partners also tend to think in marriages.

old news: MIAMI – An agitated passenger who claimed to have a bomb in his backpack was shot and killed by a federal air marshal after he bolted from a jetliner that was boarding for take off.
&nbsp &nbsp &nbsp No bomb was found. “Go back to bed, America, your government is in control. You are free to do what we tell you.”

Aiden and I made headway on one of the mink last night. We sliced off about a pound of flesh from the female. Once beheaded, it looked less sad and depressed and more anatomically interesting. We filleted her until she was almost skeletal, then we packed what remained in salt and put her in the fridge. Aiden wants to name her Anne Rand so that he’s had the satisfaction of tearing out her intestines and slitting her throat. I am refusing, however, on the grounds that my mink will be pretty when they’re finished and not fascist.

He also made the incredibly unfortunate comment that claimed that he was feeling better about it as the corpse cooled. When pressed as to why, he very haltingly admitted that he was finding too much similarities between the feeling of the dead mink and plunging fingers into female genitalia. I think that disqualifies any of his more poetic suggestions. There was also a comment about killing me if I posted that, so I suppose I’m lucky he never reads this thing. *teases*

Bringing me back to life to(o).

Walking across bridges at night used to be one of the more dangerous things I could do. All the hollow butterflies cut out of my tummy silenced when I finally stood on the rail. All the water catching the lights. Why does the ocean never reflect the stars?

A man found dead on a NYC subway car may have been dead for hours before anyone noticed.

It could have happened like this, I could have lay on my back in the middle of an intersection.

Instead, I picked up the phone. I dialed. I said, “hello”.

It’s a heavy on the saxophone moment, an understanding of grace with a long hard breath of sound. “Hello” Yeah, I know that one. Emphasis on the beginning of the word, low on the aich, more air than vibration. “Is this?!” There’s someone in town who knows how to conjure your name, your careful explanation of the hazards of cussing out christians in french. You know the game. It’s like a quick agile dance, how we speak. Soft insinuation this way, a little that way. All of it encapsulated in the way I shape your name. Those eyes, watching mine watch your hands. I remember that ring, but I didn’t think of it at the time. I almost offered to trade. Now I know that would have been meaning for meaning. We’re lunatics.

“Jhayne, can I ask you something?”

“Anything you want.”
“Are you crazy?”

The children were delightful, small tiny voices that didn’t know english. A catastrophe of insane grinning.

Sleepless in Seattle re-mixed as a horror movie.

Mike was upstairs when I wrote part of that, but all I heard was the soft susurration of cars passing by in rain. A very vancouver thing. The room I was in is full of polished steel appliances and red hardwood shelves clumsily full of yellowing books, a modern room cleverly awash in english antiques. The lamp at the foot of the stairs, (which has on the landing a half-size grandfather clock), is a bronze victorian woman, hands upraised like victory, a torch in each hand where the lightbulbs fit. Explosions In The Sky playing quietly, making the moment feel as if it was cut out of a novel about a lonely young professional who is questioning life enough to make an interesting book. It would have the kind of ending where you feel incomplete for having run out of pages.

That was before going to Afrikaa Bombata on Thursday, while waiting for Andrew. My day had been splendid, full of fierce joy. My smile felt like it would crack, I was so happy. Friday was different. Friday was still, flying in a comfortable holding pattern as my absent keys looked for a way to land at the shop, where I needed them to open with. (Raphaella came bringing the succor of sweet responsibility, no worries.) Friday was a dopamine calm. Friday I woke naked after an hour’s sleep in an unfamiliar bed. Friday the door opened at nine:thirty as I was about to tie my shoes and Kyle came in with a metal pail of tea and juice and bottled water.

Turkish court dropped the case against renowned writer Orhan Pamuk

My hero, my clumsily found grace. He lives only a block away from my home. The worst part is that this is perfect timing.

singing you’re one of my only friends who knows my love

Good morning to the new lunar year. On the Chinese calendar it’s my year, the year of the Dog.

The roof of my mouth feels lightly of electricity. Yesterday was falling backward, a door opening accidently, opening onto a room full of people I never see and don’t think about often enough. I have a new ring, a silver thing like the branch of a mother of pearl tree. I have eyes too open to see sleep properly. The parade through China Town was extremely beautiful. Ray and I bought explosive paper twists, you throw them to the ground and they spark and bang. I fell in love all over again every time I dropped one to the pavement. I took a slew of incredibly colourful pictures, but I will upload them later, when I am not rushing against the time I need to be at work.

She retrieved a clove cigarette from her purse and put it to her lips. I hurriedly offered her a light with my lighter.

“I want to sleep with you,” she said.

So we slept together.

-Haruki Murakami

This General Motors Futurliner was one of only 12 such vehicles ever built. They were introduced in 1940 as part of GM’s “Parade of Progress,” spun out of the 1933-34 World’s Fair, themed “A Century Of Progress.” There are nine known Futurliners that have survived. Three are in operating condition, including this 1950 model which sold at an auction last week for US$4,320,000.”

  • Vintage UK electronics ads.

    The day before yesterday, I felt like terrible company. Saturday night I simply crashed. Blearily I answered the phone a couple times, tried to wake up enough to get myself together enough to go to dinner with my friend, failed, and finally closed my eyes. There was a knock on the door a little past midnight, Andrew and Ian to pick up some electronics pieces, and a bit later, Matthew to tuck me in, but no one stayed and I fell back into uncomplicated darkness, tangling my ferret in my hair and forgetting to dream.

  • string them together

    Adrian’s finally a father. Send tentative moments of nervous congratulation over to him and A.J. They’re braver than the rest of us. When Adrian first informed me at SinCity, almost six months ago, I actually began to fall and he had to catch me. Apparently that was the most popular response.

    It’s Ryan‘s birthday on Monday. I had mixed up the date, thinking it was to be on Sunday, September 11th re-wiring my brain for importance. I thought about having party for the Fallen Towers, a wake for the American Empire. Very antique commiserations, a very old world celebration. Fancy dress, champagne glasses we smash in the street, a cake in the shape of a flaming airplane. A toast! Oh land of freedom, we barely had a chance to say that we’re sorry for letting you become what you did.

    Out in the real world, the California Assembly has become the first state legislature in the US to pass a bill endorsing gay marriages and pictures of Katrina are finally coming on-line. Someone accused me of harping on about New Orleans the other day, claiming that I was blowing the disaster out of proportion. I have to wonder where they’re getting thier news, because I don’t think I’ve an imagination that could overstate how badly the response was handled, (ex. Hosptial closed for President visit.), even down to the simplest things:“The good news: If you’ve survived Hurricane Katrina, the government will let you register for help online. The bad news: But only if the computer you’re using is running Windows.

    transmigrant‘s been posting some fabulous links on the topic, like this short clip available for download.

    Carpark North has a video that sequels Human. They’re the same children who work such miracle wonders as love, only a year later. They seem so much older, the wisdom has changed into something far lonelier. I don’t like it as much, I feel it lacks the wonder that makes the first one gasp, but it’s still interesting to see. Click on Media, then Video, to watch them. Human is simply divine. Andrew found a page of films by the same director on Videos.Antville, a multiblog list where people join and post links to “cool” music videos.

    As a nice segue, I’ve discovered Sigur Ros‘s new album, Takk, is available for a listen on MySpace here.

    Once I thought the world turned without me. I stood still in a small bubble that was coated with my name and no one ever saw me. Now I’m recognized on the street so regularly that my friends don’t act surprised anymore. Last night after work, a tall boy approached us at a bus-stop. “I’m a struggling artist, I’ve just released my first CD.” A familiar refrain, the voice of an indie kid who might not be any good, and we don’t have any money, sorry. Mid sentence he stops, “Are you Jhayne?” Ryan laughed and part of me cursed for not knowing who he was. “We went to elementary school together. My name’s Kyle!”

    I blink, this is too surreal. My memories of him are as sharp as lonely knives, I used to watch him to try and figure out how he laughed in such a world. He wore a red t-shirt with a neat band logo on it and won all the racing games in the gravel field. The brightest flame of personality in the entire grade, he’s now unrecognizable. What happened to his smile? Where’s his curly mop of hair? “You were the tallest boy in grade seven. I remember you. You were the only one who danced at our end of year dance.” I told him that I hadn’t any money, but there was an ATM at the end of the block. As we walked, he explained to Ryan how I was the weirdest girl in our entire school. “You read books, well, I suppose you still do, but you were really strange.” It occurred to me that he hasn’t seen me in about a decade but he managed to know who I was. Does that mean anything? There’s a guitar on his back, my eyes passed him over anyway. “Would it be safe to say that you were far more conservative then?” He didn’t have any change, so I bought him peanut butter cups at the 7-11 on the other end of the block, handed him his ten dollars and felt uncomfortably like I was being charitable.

    We talked a little more after that and I wished him luck and promised to e-mail him. I’m wondering where this will go, what I will discover about the people who ostracized me when I was twelve. Thinking now, I miss the rare kids who talked to me. I think he’s still in touch with some. Brodie, he mentioned, a boy I knew in highschool who wasn’t that bad. Rather sane, by my accounts. He played Seymour when I played Audrey when we put on little Shop Of Horrors. Our strange plant was a cactus covered in shredded newsprint. Apparently he’s in a band now, the Living. They have gigs sometime. I hope to go.

    hubris justified

    I approve
    Originally uploaded by Foxtongue.

    Sunday was an insane day for people. At first it seemed as if in among the thousands of people thronging Commercial Drive for Drivefest, Dominique and I were not to meet anyone we knew. It was fascinating to walk among so many and not have our names called out once. We were beginning to feel odd, in fact, as we were almost at Venables before we discovered friends. I was bolstered, however, by the unexpected pleasure of encountering David Garfinkle at the Mad Hatters Tea Party. (Matthew and I had arrived in time for tear down, missing the show entirely, but with time enough to gather up Dominique, Rowan, and Anna.)

    David is an old friend, originally an associate of my mothers, who I’ve known since I was ten or twelve. Later I met him again as one of Bill’s best friends, (he being the catalyst for my meeting Bill), and I suspect that he and I get along better than he and my mother. We lost touch when Bill and I had our common law divorce, as I have with a few people, so when we met at the park, (he played the King of Hearts), we immediately sat down with smiles that tried to touch our ears. I’ve got a number for him now and I’m going to call him after work tomorrow for tea. It will be a treat to catch up. The notes of the dial tone and number pad, they are music. They are rings in water to grasp onto and kick.

    I met another member of the Tea Party later, a girl named Burrow, who by coincidence is staying with my friend Kyle. Incestuous City Syndrome hits again. We ended up at Kyle’s place, the two of us, and he and I stayed up attempting to watch the Dr. Who that James gave me until three:thirty in the morning. (They were too badly scratched, so we only made it through one episode. We gave up when Kyle was literally losing the gift of speech.)

    I met Marc on the street as well, which was a Joy Incarnate TM moment. It’s unlikely that anyone who didn’t know me last winter could understand how giddy I am that I’ve collected again this member of the Lost People. I invited him to Korean movie night. In my life, Marc’s been missing for about a year. It took a lot of effort not to bury him in kisses. He’s brilliant. We would go for long walks and discuss too many movies. He was Placebo Cine, but some time last spring his e-mail address changed and he stopped answering midnight pebbles at his window. I’d assumed he’d moved, leaving me with his camping tent and favourite shirt. However, it seems that he hasn’t changed address, only rooms. Apparently it is no longer his window, but Paul’s. I am genius.