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5.14.2004

passion from a flammable skirt (before she new it was on fire "did she belive, for even one glamorous second, that her passion had arrived?)

I was lifted off the ground, taken from this world of what we call reality to a sub-world of truth incarnate, erotic confidence and buttery smiles. I hungrily read Aimee Bender’s sixteen short stories in The Girl in the Flammable Skirt, in love with her imagination of characters that literally embody their personalities to the fullest—it is their flesh. Her extraordinarily simple yet mischievously and darkly visual language left me sailing and not wanting to land.

A lover is undergoing reverse evolution. Gorilla to sea turtle to salamander to amoeba until she sets him free in the ocean…A hunchback and a pregnant woman who find the most divine spooning position…A woman who gives birth to her mother and then shares the cake still frozen from her funeral. No character is shocked, no scenario too unbelievable – the ocean could turn red from a ruby ring, a man could live normally with a gaping window through his mid section, a mermaid and a imp undercover as ‘normal’ could fall in love in high school, make out under the bleachers. Our insides are outside – psychological and physical are one in the same.

Each of these stories were little candies, not chocolate, but in electric wrappers, sometimes revealing a pit, a hole, density, or fruity juice. I want my writing to be surprising but a tender reality of life’s truths. Give up simile, if she carries weight like a stone on her back, well why not give her a stone backpack. I don’t look for a ‘normal’ life, nor do I think I would be good at one. Adulthood fantasy should not categorized as childlike. Fight, banality, those little sparks become the fuel to a fabulous bonfire. Why see life through square-shaped frames if they can be 3-d and leopard print?

I don’t see the magical side of these stories as being like fairy tales. Yes ice girl and fire girl are neutralized by a handshake, but one is also consumed by passion and the other by sterility. They both need each other but do not want to admit it. Fire girl gets put in jail while ice girl helps patients in the hospital. Are these not two sides of a person, or a story of a relationships between people? When Steven, Mary’s husband, returned from war without lips it was all very frustrating. “That night in bed, he grazed the disc over her raised nipples like a UFO and the plastic was cool on her skin. It felt like they were in college and toying with desk items as sexual objects…I’m over that, Mary thought. I want lips now. I just want the basics.” Does not circumstance have the power to make certain things and relationships odd and forever altered? Lips or not, war changes people. Bender could have had the husband lose an eye or a leg, but what fun would that be? We’ve seen or heard those stories before.

Each of these stories have a beautifully simplistic take on the alternative truth – and I do not see them as unrealistic, rather closer to truth than most things I read. The ugly are beautiful and desired, quirkiness rules over normalcy. The weird girl in high school is actually a mermaid whose hair is alive (really, she can drink beer from it). Erotic passion is vivid but unique – the baker/robber makes love with his girlfriend in heaps of flour or sugar that he buys just for that purpose. Do we all not feel that our expressions of love are unordinary and unique to us?

I strive for these unexplored imagination incarnations – if he acts like a stone, why not be the one in back pasture that I always break a mower blade on. It could just be a story of a girl mowing the field, and be fine at that, or speak to an ocean of individual interpretations. These is what I loved about Bender’s book, the human relationships—however weird or between figures with unusual deformities—carry such a complex set of emotions and interpretations, making it rich and most consumable.


5.12.2004

woah has a week gone by that quickly? forgot to blog last friday, forgot to do a lot of things. left hand in and out of numbness - possibly computer induced? Anyhow, late is sometimes better than never.
victor hernandez cruz...mountains in the north: hispanic writing in the USA.

i got a negative sense - anglo culture the "flame" consuming all that is rich. "in the north of america it is a constant job just keeping ourselves from going looney-tunes , for this is a place where every stupidity is made available for the purpose of jamming the circuits." well, if i am part of that - because i am for classification sake "american" - i'm a bit bummed out. he talks about writers and awareness - of truth - and how american culture drowns everything out, pukes, machine guns. I don't think i can define american. most people i know have ancestors that are not american. i am norweigian and ukranian. i don't shoot iraquis. i don't watch tv. i don't live on preservatives. i could describe the stereotypical american - shopping malls, fast food, the land of the free, protect our way of life - but stereotypes only speak to half-truths. (btw - our way of life? doesn't that involve other cultures and - can anyone define this?) this may be the dominating image in global media, but it doesn't make me proud and it doesn't make me call myself something other than american. i did vow to leave the US if bush gets elected again, however. i hate being represented by something/someone i hate. but i don't claim this personality as everyone american. the photos of iraqi prisoners in the recent news makes me sick and angry. this feeling happens almost every time i catch the news. but i cannot say that is me, i cannot say that is america - i think it's twisted. cultural appreciation is something that americans are known to lack - but americans are everyone and each to their own culture. to fight this soup is weak, not everyone here reads a hispanic work and says once you've read one, you've read them all. i think (and hope) that's an untruth.
Elle - word to axing rational. I thought it was a good word, something i tried to be, but now it sucks all the juices out. leaves my mouth chalky and be like, fine whatever, have fun, right.

and I had the most confirming word experience - when my grandmother (90+ no less) said she hated the word 'commitment.' i said he just doesn't want to be committed and we both said in unison, i hate that word. no doubt.

5.04.2004

just can't get it out of my head after Monday...so here's a little johnny...

Imagine

Imagine there's no heaven,
It's easy if you try,
No hell below us,
Above us only sky,
Imagine all the people
living for today...

Imagine there's no countries,
It isnt hard to do,
Nothing to kill or die for,
No religion too,
Imagine all the people
living life in peace...

Imagine no possesions,
I wonder if you can,
No need for greed or hunger,
A brotherhood of man,
Imagine all the people
Sharing all the world...

You may say Im a dreamer,
but Im not the only one,
I hope some day you'll join us,
And the world will live as one.

5.01.2004

Oh yes, big and small, will be a Plug Poetry reading this May 10th at AD White House, 4:30 pm....and yay, my first reading. I made my portfolio into a little book so hopefully by then it will be all dapper, and if anyone wants one, well they will be free.
melo,phano, and logo
poeia
Well, in order to discern which writing technique I am most comfortable with I have thought about my writing process... I often begin with certain phrases or words that just burrow in, get under my skin, think about falling asleep or in the shower, outside ripping at grass or what have you. Maybe I heard it in a song, most of the time, only the salamders know. Like for the sonnet one, I couldn't stop thinking of a proud stone. I wanted to ask this stone - what makes you so proud? This bizarre question started setting up house in my grey mush and the only way to excile it (if only so that I don't walk to class in a jibberish stupor) is to form it into a writing piece of some sort, to give it some context, make it its own home. Why was I thinking about a proud stone? I couldn't really say. But when I started contemplating it's nesting grounds - well my little boyfriend came to mind. So very unemotional and rigid and satisfied with being detached at the moment (not like it's totally possible to sustain with all that long distance/time monkey poo) but instead of me thinking about him, i was thinking about stones. Was a sort of release in a way, despite the sonnets eventual structural breakdown because there was just way to much trying to pack in there. (Josh point well taken...I could, afterall, write 2!).

Anyhow, to get back on the picking apart of all this 'opeia' shiznits, i should tackle melopoeia stronger...often when finally reading the pieces outloud, "hey that's not what it sounded like in my head!" Maybe my weakest point, sometimes I just like how words look on the page...but I do like talking a lot (more person-person) and when I get in a wordy whitty mood, boy that's fun.

I'm into the creation of images, I did have fun with my "Rockaway" poem, can't remember the assignment, a lot of quick jumping of mind images of my time there, sharing what I see in life is so so good, I like revealing in that way. oooo, that's a lot of commas and phrases. ha I can do that here. But I don't like painting a scene that doesn't amuse me in some way or I feel is somehow unique in that it can be appreciated if brought out in word form.

So...logopoeia you're up. number 1. Words alone are words alone, but boy when the come together with another word that isn't your typical combo number 7, and at first it doesn't make sense and then aahhhahahahha only me it makes perfect sense, and oohh, how beautiful and sweet. my heart is a beehive!

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