Thursday, December 23, 2004

Let Me sleep it's Christmas Time--1997 (iii) finale

"Do you know anything about the Festival of lights?"

It's not the voice I was anticipating hearing, but its a voice. It's feminine warmth permeates into the plastic lobe of the phone. I can feel her entire body opening up; pouring like a carafe of vintage wine through the plastic receiver.

"Yeah, in fact I was wondering...."Romantic bullshit. Bullshit. Bullshit. Not the voice you've been waiting for kid, but a voice none the less. A voice tucked inside the plastic womb of Ma bell. The voice caged behind succulent lips and a killer body. And that ass. You told all your male co-workers that you would hit that. You tell your gay boss when you are reeling down the metal grille that you're going to hit that, even though he responded with a shoulder shudder and a verbal 'ick. You tell you best friend Hale that you are going to hit that. It feels like everyone is expecting you to hit that and now, She is even expecting you to hit that. She made the first initiative. She cornered all of your emotional pawns on the dating chess board and now expects to be mated.

She called you up. She wants you. She's been waiting for you.

You already have her phone number posted in the back room memorized. Twice, during a shift, you burrowed your face deep into her fur coat, inhaling, wondering what her warmth feels like from a closer angle.

But you are waiting for another girl. Megan. You called her the day after Thanksgiving and she was her typical, aloof self. Quiet. Confused. She didn't laugh at anything you said. She suggests that your view of reality and adulthood are askewed everytime you talk about your books you are writing. She said she would call you back Sunday night. It is Sunday now. You've called Megan twice already and left friendly messages. You tell her you love her. You tell her you'll wait for her. You tell her that whatever she's going through right now is fine. You practically make-out with the dubbed voice that informs cyber-optic solicitors that she can't take your call right now. You call back long distance just to listen to that voice. YOU LOVE THAT VOICE!

You try to write poems about her. You wait. And finally, the phone rings!!!! It is a female voice and it asks for you! You smile. You're charming. You're confident. She came back to you. You're life once agian has merit. You're no longer a failure. But wait.... It's the lithe voice of your co-worker Jana. The girl with the nice ass. "Is this the nice ass club? Hale said, nudging his thick slab of elbow into your gut the first night she clocked into the book store where you are a supervisor. You trained Jana that night. She smiled at you. She seemed charmed, delighted. Her cheek bones drove you nucking futs, the two of you continued to flirt. You feel comfortable around her, the two of you LAUGH incessantly together. The world's a big joke. Even things that are meted by a certain measure of sincerity--important worldly topics-- seemed to sit on the global whoopie cushion--like someone farting in a United Nations Press conference.

"Festival of Lights. Yeah. I'll take you. This Friday I'll pick you up. How 'bout dinner before hand. You ever been to Rizzi's? I love Rizzi's! That settles it. This Friday. I'll pick you up."

Months later you find out that Megan, the girl you were waiting for, was actually sitting next to her anwer machine when you called that Sunday night in November. When asked why she didn't pick up she would shrug and say simply "I couldn't."


You pick Jana up in the same clunker you ferried to Matthiessen three weeks earlier. She is dressed to kill. You could light a cigarette off the low-cut leather skirt she is wearing; that's how hot she looks.

You hand her a rose. It is the fifth of December. For the next nine months the fifth will be christened as your anniversary. You'll take her out to dinner on the fifth--hell--you'll take her out to dinner every Friday!!!!

She's a picky eater. She doesn't eat "crusts." She also doesn't smoke "What a coincidence?" You say, making an inward vow. "I just quit!"

You take her around town. The two of you look at the Christmas lights together. At first you feel like a clumsy high-school freshman usurped from a John Hughes film taking a stab at the senior homecoming queen. You drive fast. Your left hand on the wheel; your right hand in her lap; ensconced in her palm--a clam shell composed of fingers and flesh.

You take her up on the bluff to a place where you can see the entire city. The city is a blur of holiday lights. You hold her. The two of you have yet to kiss. Have yet to fully embrace. You quote her poems; your favorite poem, a mantra from Whitman-- you quote, holding her hand, looking through the glass windshield of your clunker, dazed by the green and red lights -- interstellar holiday constellations.

I have perceiv’d that to be with those I like is enough,
To stop in company with the rest at evening is enough,

To be surrounded by beautiful, curious, breathing, laughing flesh is enough,
To pass among them, or touch any one, or rest my arm ever so lightly round his or her neck for a moment—what is this, then?

I do not ask any more delight—I swim in it, as in a sea.

There is something in staying close to men and women, and looking on them, and in the contact and odor of them, that pleases the soul well;

All things please the soul—but these please the soul well.

It is the poem you live for and she seems stunned. It was the poem you read in front of your entire illiterate high school. The poem you first came across three years ago when you decided you wanted to be a poe-hit.

You take her to your bedroom. Your parents are downstairs. Your mother is friendly. Your Dad smiles at you and wobbles his chin in an assenting manner as the two fo you pracne through the televised heat of the living room. Your room is full of books--so many books--and a thick oak desk you use as an emotinal puddle--splashing around the chorus of words and sound.

There is art in your room. Renoir. Boticelli. Most girls you reel up here think that you are gay. You hold Jana. The two of you kiss.

"Let's go back to my place." she suggests, with a smile. "I'd feel more comfortable there."


Entering her dorm you feel the wild orchard of her breath--the rosemary sage of her tongue. She is an RA--she has her own room. Everything is neat. Once the door clicks lock there is a rattle. A bevy of college sophmores huddled together in pajama bottoms, giggling. They all want to meet you. She has told everyone about you!

You feel important. The door clicks shut and the two of you glide to her mattress; your lids peeled down; your bodies connected. You are saying things. Making promises no twenty year old should make. You hold each other and before you know it a pastel winter dawn streams into her side window and the two of you are dressed only in your undergarments, huddled on top of a futon, listening to enya--your bodies contorted into a sleepy pretzel of limbs and appendages.

"What's that?" You say, pointing to a plant as you rise up to adjust the blind.

"That's Karen." Jana says, slipping into the shirt you were wearing without asking.


"The plants name is Karen." Jana says. "Don't ask me why I name things. A friend gave me the plant and I just thought it looked like a Karen."

"I think you look like a morning angel." You say, before cursing at the osciallting hands on your watch, reailzing that you have to open the book shop in forty-five minutes.

You get dressed. She peels off your shirt and hands it back to you with a smile. She's more comfortable with her body than you are.

Although the blinds are clipped, the morning sunning still slants through the window, hitting Jana, forming a corona of light, a nimbus, around her head.

"I'll call you later. Thanks for last night." You say.

"Think will have more 'last nights.' Jana inquires.

"I think last night was just the preamble." You say, kissing her lips, her cheek bones, her forehead, her smile.


"So you didn't hit that?" Hale inquires, tugging on his pipe during a smoke break, later in the week.

"She desn't want to have sex until after she comes back. I mean, she says she wants to, she says she's in love with me. She wants it to be special. Not rushed."

"What," Hale's pipe falls out of his mouth.

"She wants to do it once she comes back from South Padre. She says she knows it's right for her."

"Shit," Hale shakes his head in disgrace as if his office pool lottery pick is now void. "you been talking to her."

"For hours every night." You say.

"What about Megan?" Hale inquires.

"She never called me back. She doesn't care. Fuck her."

"Jana is hot. She has a nice..."

"I know. I know."

Hale starts to make unctuous male sexual mating sounds. He re-lights his pipe. Normally you would fire up a cigarette, but since Jana is so adamant about not-smoking you decided to quit.

"I'm spending the night at her dorm this Friday." You said. "It's our Christmas together. She leaves next Tuesday and she'll be gone for a month."

"That's a long ass time bro,"


"Do you love her?" Hale inquires, you smile.

"I think I might."

Hale begins to laugh, breaks into his locker room rant. "Well you know Dave, if she really is your soul-mate there's only one way to find out."


It is the Friday before she adjourns to south Padre and we are having our Christmas together. I break into Jana's dorm and surprise her. Heaps of packages are placed under diminutive Christmas tree. Jana is talking long distance on the phone to her mom. She wants to tell her mom about me in person. I do everything in my power to distract her; to make her laugh; giggle while she is talking to Mamma Bear.

" Be Good," Jana says, with a smile, twisting my hand.


"Nothing Mom," she says, her cheekbones protruding slightly as she says goodbye before tying her arms around my neck.

"Merry Christmas, darling!" She says, before escorting me over to the Christmas tree. We exchange gifts. We tell each other which gifts to unwrap first. We hold gratitude make-out sessions between bartered packages. Finally, she reaches over to her bed, hoisting up a small package from behing her pillow.

"I'm not creative like you try to be in your writing, but I did make you something." Jana says, placing a thinly wrapped package in my palms. "Merry Christmas."

I open it up. It is a wooden frame with two sides. On one side is a picture of Renoir's Les dejeuner des canotiers a picture she had noticed in my bedroom--on the other side was a cursive rendering of the poem--Whitman's I Sing the Body Electric--the poem I quoted to her on our first date, only a week and several decades ago.

"I thought you could keep this on your writing desk and think of me." She said, her face full of smiles.

We kissed and held each other and again, awoke several hours later, the hard winter orange signifiying morn creeping it's feathery tail into her bedroom window.

"It's gonna be sad though." Jana acknowledges, batting her eyes. "It's gonna be sad when we say goodbye on Tuesday."

It doesn't have to be sad, " I said. "I mean, we could be like. HI-FIVE."

Giggles and work. There's always work in the morning. I dress, kiss her forehead, clambor in my clunker and head back into work.


On the Tuesday we said goodbye Jana's friend Jill lets you into her dorm room.

"I have a great idea." Jill says. "Why don't you surprise Jana."


"Get into wardrobe and jump out when she comes in."

Jana's bedroom was full of suitcases and duffel bags.

"Oh, and one other thing." Jill notes, in a manner reminiscent of a camp counseler, "Strip."

"What," I say.

"Come on, it'll be sexy. Just take off your clothes. Give Jana something to remember you by."

Jill pushes me into the closet and I begin to slough my outfit. Shirts and shoes doffed, no problem. My jeans are wreathed around my ankles when I hear Jana's voice. I trip. The closet door springs opens. There are ten other females in the room. I am in my underwear. The girls begin to laugh in a confetti of sprinkled giggles.

"Is that your boyfriend or are you just happy to see me baby." One of them says.

"So that's where you've been hiding him" Another says.

"Funny," I say zipping up my pants, snapping my belt into place. Jana smiles.

Gradually the girls filter out of the room. Jana and I exchanged sealed envelopes. earlier in the week we agreed to compose each other eternal missives declaring are love for each other--we decided we read them at four-o'clock the next day. The exact time her plane leaves the runway.

"I have a question for you," Jana asks. "Could you take care of Karen the fern when I 'm gone. I mean. just water her every couple of days....and I don't mean pee on her when you're drunk. I know how rowdy you and Hale get around the holidays."

"Wha...I can't pee on her."

"No," Jana says. I hoist her luggage and help her to her vehicle.

"I love you," Jana says. I volley the thread of syllables back into her forehead, knowing nothing about love. Knowing nothing about giving myself, feeling only that is the correct thing to say.

We begin to kiss. Jana swats tears from her sockets. The car horn is blaring. Jana has to go.

"Goodbye," We both say, Jana in tears.

"Wait," Jana says. "Hi-FIVE!"

We hi-five each other. Jana smiles. The car dissipates. I am standing alone, in my camel coat, holding Karen the Fern in my arms like a toddler.

Our lives would change and thank god for it. In a little over two years Jana would be engaged to a horse-trainer named Chad. When she came into the library to show me her engagement ring I gave her a hug. When we said our life long goodbye and wished each other luck, the only thing I could think of to tell her was "Hi-five." She remained quiet then, and walked out of my life forever.

I saw a picture of her with her husband in the campus Alumni magazine. Ironically it was the same alumni magazine that had the obituary of my father's death.

But that Christmas--Christmas 1997, I slept with the possibility of rebirth sprouting inside my chest. I slept so well. And that chalky December afternoon, cantering across Bradley quad with Karen the Fern in tow, I felt complete.

There was a car horn. It was Hale in his Dodge Ram. I entered the passenger seat and handed him the fern.

"So," Hale said. "Did you hit that?" Hale inquires, giving me a masculine nudge. My lips remained reticent.

"Brother." I told him. "I'm gonna be hitting that shit all my life."


Tuesday, December 14, 2004

Sometimes the Light at the end of the tunnel... just the train at the other end...

Tonight is the last night of round the clock errupt through the calendar workaholic fest. Did the inopportune thing and slept for ten hours today so now I'm having a hard time concentrating.

Two finals tomorrow than two weeks off of work. My body is overly taxed, thoroughly caffeinated, dehydrated, exhausted, fatigued..blahblahblah ...

Break means three-or-four trips to see family and friends in Chicago. It also means plenty of writing (my favorite vice) and a chance to read non-stop OUTSIDE OF CLASS for a month!!!!!

But now I have to finish composing my theory final. THEORY SUCKS!!!! I've had a hard time in this class. Nine times out of ten people who are into LIT theory are writers who never got laid in grad school and who salivate for the literary spotlight. Give me a short-story and a secret world over semantics anyday!!!!!

Friday, December 10, 2004

Showering in a Glass Submarine

Feels like I'm on a nuclear submarine. 9 hours left until second final. I've been lodged in the library for almost thirty hours straight. Myself and my fellow 95% of the human population are begining to contemplate what ever happened to the concept of weekend? Interesting conversation with Mama Bear tonight that deserves to be blogged. But for now, it's back to the books........................................................................

Saturday, November 20, 2004

Magic in the air and the Fine Art of Anonymity....

Nothing beats dancing with a beautiful girl whose name you have a hard time remembering because it's crowded on the dancefloor. Nothing beats walking her home and shrouding her shoulders with your jacket to ward off the brittle November air. Nothing beats twirling her around in the late evening autumnal haze. Nothing beats holding her under the limbs of a park evergreen at two thirty in the morning, your bodies tumbled in mulch and dew. Nothing beats waking up with a splash of sunlight in her bedroom and kissing her forehead as you frisk the floor for your respective garments. Nothing beats tucking her in and letting the dog out as you (once again) head to work, because that's how you spend both your days and your nights and your weekends, you work, you sacrifice your health truckling to the whims of rich kids from chicago who've never had to work for much of anything.

Nothing beats the insinuating nod your co-worker gives you when he comments that "You have leaves stuck in your sweater" and you respond with a glazed look of triumph tucked into your smile. Nothing beats booting up your blogg and seeing the reflection of her Good China forehead in the blankness of your pending entry; thinking about how her eyes became wild pebbles rippling across the shore of her lips after you kissed.

Nothing beats reflecting over the sweetness of her breath. Nothing beats mentally raking over the few details you can remember about her five hours later. How her name is Nicole. How she is a philosophy major. How she plays guitar and is five ft. one and with feathery limbs. How she is only twenty. How she said she'd been with three other people before last night.How she had a parent who died from cancer who was two years younger than your dad who also died of cancer.

How her fingertips groped the tip of the sheet as she cloaked her entire body in a mound of warmth. How her body formed parenthesis and ellipses and various lowercase alphabetical shapes as she drifted into the nocturnal key signature of sleep.

Nothing beats wondering if you'll ever see her again. Which, in all honesty, you probably won't.

Nothing stings when she suggests "Do you think we should date?" And all you can do is hold her.

Nothing beats realizing on your way to work that sometime last night your wallet slipped out the side pocket of your jacket and you are short around $150 and have no identification. No school ID. No drivers license. No ATM. Nothing.

Nothing beats realizing this and not caring. Hoping that some bum found the money. Realizing that you, in a way, feel emanicipated from the tiny laminated rectangular gloss that so readily informs the world your eye color, of your height Of which organs you'd like to have donated. Of when your driving priveledges expire.

Nothing beats realizing who you are, on your own, with nothing but the memory of a smile. A plucked visual petal kissed from the nostalgia of someone else's lips.

Wednesday, November 10, 2004


Just found a stack of old 3 1/2 inch floppies with old poems I thought I'd never see again. This is a poem for Ashley, a brilliant creative writing student from Bismark North Dakota. Ashley hated my line breaks and would often write "BB" (which means Bad Break) in the margins of all the poems I would workshop. This poem is about breaking things and is for her (it's written in her impeccable style)....

Love song for Ashley Krenelka

“The preordained frangibility of the hymen,”
James Joyce, Ulysses

According to Ashley Krenelka
A creative writing student
From Bismark, North Dakota
I can’t break a line of poetry
To wipe my ass with.
It’s not that I haven’t had trouble
Breaking things before.
Every toy I had growing up
Broke rather easily.
My mom accused
Me of rough-housing
When I broke my sister’s
Cello, hurtling my other
Sister into it after watching
I blew out the brakes
On my Christmas ten-speed
Going down a hill
In Bradley park
Trying to halt
Before hammering into the front
Bumper of the park Marshal’s Jeep
Opportunely stationed
At the bottom of the hill.

I had no trouble breaking
Meredith Willow's hymen
Breaking into her body
Our foreheads
slapped with sweat
Facing the other
As bodily fluid
Mixed with tears
Mixed with blood

I had no trouble breaking up
With several girlfriend’s
Had no trouble breaking
My words then
Had no trouble telling them
Things that I knew would hurt them.
Separating the noun from the verb.
The action from the event

On more than one occasion
I have had trouble breaking
away from the bar stool.
Thinking that eventually
My body would drift away
Out into a pond of sobriety
Where eventually everything
Would somehow make sense.

The windshield my body snapped
Spittle glass drippings
Chandelier teardrops coating my
Body on the front of my hood
The din of traffic horns
Fluttering voices of paserby’s
Telling me that I am lucky
And of course, I heckled,
Because I felt at the time
That I could break anything.

Or the window I shattered--
My fist the size of a human heart
pummeling through the transparent
Gloss of my own reflection
Again I laughed
Watching as my face
Tumbled into triangular shards
A vacuous rectangular frame
leering back at me,
A socket culled from some other world.

But I still can’t break a line of Poetry.
When Ashley critiques my Xeroxed poems
There’s capital hot-pink BB’s
At the end of every sentence
Indicating bad line-breaks.
Apparently her eyelash
is only capable of soaking
Limited amounts of language
In a single blink.

Maybe the reason Ashley breaks lines
With such grace and facility
(She writes her poems
like she wear her jeans—tight!)
is because, being female
she possesses the innate power to crunch
a man’s chest though words.
She knows what it’s like to feast
From a sac of male arteries
She knows what fine delicacies a male
Aorta presents for the female palette.
How the heart tastes like squid pate
As it moistens on the feminine tongue
Before being digested.

She knows all this
and hums it to herself—scribbling
“BB” at the end of my every sentence,
Knowing that men
break in half horizontally,
A lightening slash fissure
zipped across his chest
Pawning off a superhero’s
Claiming they can leap light years
Using the moon as a belt buckle
They can save the world
While no one would notice
That they are broken
from the inside,
like my poems,
Never break
Even when I am already
Broken in half again and again
and again.

-David Von Behren


Sunday, November 07, 2004


That's right ladies, my novel's TOO big. 750 single space pages plus illustrations means that I'm having a bitch of a time finding a single FLASH drive to save it on. That and I NEED a clean draft of this by midnight DEC 15th which means that I need to cut at least 200 pages and then double space the damn thing......AHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Saturday, November 06, 2004

If I Could Cry, I Would Almost Break Down in Tears...

Hello heart attack!!!! I come into work this morning and while I'm casually filling out time cards I see a scribbled post-it on the corner of my desk.




followed by his phone number....

McSweeney's is one of the hippest literary journals in the Nation founded by Best Selling author Dave Eggers. I sent out a bunch of "stuff" to McSweeney's late last summer and still have yet to hear back from them.

Until this morning. I was out late last night, carousing with mutual muses Kim, Bob, Amanda and "Farm girl" Katie (who told me the difference between straw and hay "There's a reason us nice farm girls roll around in the hay and not the straw.") I somersauletd out of bed, clocked in early on a weekend, opened the library, listened to customers grouse about the temperature, listened to foreign students butcher the lexicon of my youth before dodging back into my office and there it was, posted in the corner, winking at me in scribbly ink.

Then it hit me.

" I'm....published in a major journal!!!!!!! What am I going to tell my mom? I've finally been acknowledged as a writer!!!"

I went outside for a smoke. I called my co-worker SEXUALLY FRUSTRATED GRETCHEN who took the message last night. She yelled at me for waking her up and then said yes, some guy called long distance for you. He said it was really important.

"Gretchen, do you know what this means? That's the name of the guy I sent off my manuscripts to last august!"

Sexually Frustrated Gretchen : Yawn.

"This means I'm finally a writer Gretchen!!!!"

Sexually Frustrated Gretchen: Click.

My entire body rattled like a maladjusted seismic monitor as my fingers pecked out the numerical shapes. What would he say?

"Dave man your writing's the shit brother. We love it!!!! Come out here and write a monthly column for us!!"

As I called the number and listened to the static drone of cellular warble I was left with a voice mail address of none other than Nick the Writer, my beautiful writer friend who's living in New York.

"Just called to see what you were up to brother. And, oh yeah, gotchya!!!!"

Damn it Nick!!!

Sunday, October 31, 2004


Been running on E on all week, stumbling around the library and work resembling Hans Solo from the begining of Return of the Jedi. Avg less than four (shit david) hours of sleep a night. Oh well...Finished a project for school, sent out a killer short story for mock-publication, caught a beautiful photograph of Lady benz orbiting fellow solar orbs tucked in cyber space this morning....

It's Halloween!!!!!

Saturday, October 23, 2004

With Me Wherever I Go's an excerpt from an up-n-comin' Kamikaze blogg chronicling Uncle Mike's formidable lecture last Wed at the house of Worship in Wilmette. Life and work are lovingly gettin' in the way of bloggin (god love it!)



It was a perfect trenchcoat earl-grey day in Wilmette. Leafy autumnal overcast, a tad blustery. Perfect. The hard-candy colored leaves rattled off the birch spines of nearby limbs. The overcast clouds shuffled in thick cobbled strides overhead. Occasionally a thin strip of glossed light would percolate from the marble swirl above. Perfect.

Uncle Mike stopped for props along the way to the House of Worship. Much to my chagrin, Mike (who Khanum herself deemed 'The Troubleshooter' during his stint in Hafai) purchased Halloween candy and a helium balloon with the words Happy Birthday scribbled on the front.

"Whose Birthday is it?" I naively asked.

"Day-vid!" Uncle Mike barked, shaking a ruffled expression of grief from his face before guffawing at my innocence.

"Oh," I said realizing what holy day it was. "I guess I just never though of birth being an actual 'birthday' before."

Mike handed me the balloon which made me upset. The last thing I want to do was to enter the House of Worship in Wilmette, a confetti stringed balloon attached to my paw.

"Mike," I said. "We're not going to ShowBiz. This looks ridiculous."

"Just take it down to the basement where the speech is. Nobody is going to say anything."

After dropping off the props I left Mike downstairs and meditated for a long time in the Temple. The 'Prayer for Ahmad' found it's way to my lips. I said the long healing prayer, praying that God would rid me of me ego; of my coifed pride. Prayed that God would loosen my anchored arrogance allowing me somehow to become the man I'm supposed to be.

I said the prayer for the departed. I said part of the Fire tablet. I lost my vision in the satellite doily above; watching in awe as the temple's dome turned inside out, convex to concave; while my vision hallucinated in mired myopia.

I said prayers for my beloved bloggsters. For Ace overseas who's assisted me immeasurably in deciphering my muse-dotted dreams (The way she holds me I never want to wake up,) and for Daniela, who lovingly refused to meditate with me on the phone the night before, "Mistuh D, you are so funny. I can't take anything you say seriously. You are so funny Mistuh D," *smiles* and for Arya, whose token of eternal friendship remained choked in my fist as I lowered my chin and uttered the greatest name.

I then left the temple and sauntered around the gardens.

-Continuation of eveyrthing you've ever wanted-

Thursday, October 21, 2004

Love molecules

Every part of me is in love right now. All the swervy protons and nutrons and bi-polar electrons; every dessicated galactic molecule composing lil' David is in a timeless bubble. Pop me and watch my soul spill all over you like velvet syrup.

Long pending kamikaze blogg on Uncle Mike's amazing, well attended lecture and on my sojourn to wilmette. Said prayers of peace and pervasive joy for those crazy lovers who are timelessly beside me . Meditated in the Corenerstone room, snug blue talisman in paw. Last week I had a dream where I was with my mother in a Persian house that I had never seen before. Mom has always been the "cornerstone" of religion in our household. Dreams breeze on the back of my neck like droplets zipped from Lake Michigan. Saw an actual watercolor of the house of my dream in the cornerstone room. You've probably seen it too. I almost cried.

I did cry, not sob, but I allowed a stream of recognition and gratitude to inch down my cheek. I prayed the prayer for the departed over and over again; it's timesless refrain slavering from the tissue of my mouth an unconcious hymn:

O my Lord! Purify them from trespasses, dispel their sorrows, and change their darkness into light. Cause them to enter the garden of happiness, cleanse them with the most pure water, and grant them to behold Thy splendors on the loftiest mount.

It was the presence of my father. I realized that, had he not sloughed the physical cloak of his own health, of his corporeal presence, I never would have been allowed to have found all this. all this bliss. I never would have found the one thing that he spent his whole life rejoicing for in anticipation.

What greater gift is there then for a father to lay down his own life; to leave all the transient pleasures and perils this instrument of flesh bears, so that his own wayward son--his own crazy son who forged his own fall from grace long ago-- might be allowed to finally see?

Saturday, October 16, 2004


Normally cool quotes are only rserved for the Recital entry, but since ACE's analysis is brilliant and fascinating, I'll post this little ditty here:

If you give your life as a wholehearted response to love, then love will wholeheartedly respond to you. ~ Marianne Williamson

Friday, October 15, 2004

Advice to Laertes'

Just had a conference with my cool creative writing prof! He's a dear friend and an amazing writer, but he told me the truth.

"You're spending too much of your creative energy bloggin."

I smiled. What started out as a one drag from Sister A's smoke turned 125,000 wayward words itching to get off my skin and into print.

I then showed my prof. pictures of Arya and Daniela. He said each of their names very slowly and with three equally weighted syllables. He then smiled. I think he knew.....

Thursday, October 14, 2004

Polka*Dotted Muse

I'm so thankful that I have beautiful Daniela and brilliant Ace and Arya, chicly attired in her sleek Lizard garments (she must be enrolled in the Slitherine school at Bloggwarts) smiling inside my computer screen daily. Writing is such a lonely profession and tapping out random thoughts on cyber post-it notes assuages the loneliness and makes me happy; even more so it gives me encouragement. From a Baha'i perspective bloggings been the most conducive, spiritual excercise I've partaken in since I declared one year ago this pending Monday....

I've been lacking support in college this year. From the Financial Aid office to the registrars office to the Health center to sadly, even inside the classroom. Every authority figure looks like a black coated Major league Umpire pointing their craggily old finger-tips back into the blur of the dugout. It's frustrating, cause everytime I step up to the metaphorical academic plate, I try so hard to make contact with whatever pitch is hurtled in my direction. Lately, I've been striking out, but I still have faith that as long as I keep swinging the bat, eventually, when I least expect it, I'll be circling the bases, I'll be tipping my hat, things will happen.

From an artistic standpoint I get encouragement from local Bohemians. I've feel blessed that I'm friends with so many formidable artists, a few strugglin' writers, but mainly artits and musicians who "haven't" made it yet who still, like the blissful inhabitants of my blogging Narnia, inspire me to create.

Tonight I was frustrated. My sleeping schedule is split, three hours after work (4-7am) three hours during the day between classes. I received an ugly B scribbled inside my project and I indifferently tossed the paper out in the wastebasket when lolling out of the classroom. Kurt Cobain nonchalantly launching up his $30,ooo guitar at the end of a performance, unaware of where it lands and shatters.

The teacher was pissed, but I didn't care. I was heading back to the dugout after striking out, dressed in a team uniform I had to mercilessly scramble to pay for.

After a quick power nap (where my rash is, thank god, slowly healing--thanks daniela!) I stumbled into the library and tried banging out a few sentences. Nothing. I seemed unable to type anyword showcasing the letter B.

I'm lodged in here until 2 tonight and it's full-fledged autumn in P-town. It's wet and damp and leaves are scattered like wet halloween candy a week into November. I was walking around shuffling my thoughts when I saw my friend Suze and her boyfriend. Suze is a folksinger and she was having a show tonight in the student center.

Although Suze is about the size of Paddington bear, her heart is about the size of Texas. She sings these AMAZING acoustic folk songs. Her voice BELLOWS! Her lungs must drip into her kneecaps. It's almost like watching a hippie-ewok keen like Billie Holiday.

Suze was opening for a duo that used to open for Dave Matthews. She still hasn't "made" it yet but she seems so content just telling stories, drifting into the occasional cover tune, blithely orchestrating the tips of her fingers across the chords of her acoustic belly.

The song I requested her to play (a song she wrote called "Blue") she played first and gave me a lil' wink. Through her stomping chords and crisp vibrattos and vocal crescendos she seemd to tell me that it's ok. She wrote the song a couple of years ago for a friend of her's who was manically depressed. The song seems to fluctuate through every solitary emotion I've skipped over the last decade. It's a folk anthem of hope.

Thanx Suze and beautiful fellow-bloggers, simply for being here when I need you. When you strike out with the basses loaded, it's nice coming back to the dug out and still getting a nod for your efforts.

Tuesday, October 12, 2004


No, not just the side profession of my last three girlfriends (sorry Laurie, Elisa and Cheryl) but me whenver I get inside a bookstore. I go through periods where all I do is buy books. Over the last three days I've seriously binged purchasing two collection of short stories by Rick Bass (THE WATCH and THE HERMIT's TALE), Jim Harrison's beautiful novella LEGDENDS of the FALL, which, although it differs from the Movie, I still see vivid rainwater reflections of myself in all his creations. Anthony Doerr's OUT OF THIS WORLD stunning collection THE SHELL COLLECTOR, especially for the O. Henry Winning "The Hunter's Wife" a story I've easily read over ten times in the past two years and every time I read it oxygen is robbed from my lungs....

And hey, let's not forget literary journals. The new issue of Poets and Writers (so I can see who got published in the magazines where I was rejected) the cool avant-garde coffee table posh BLACK CLOCK. I LOVE Aimee Bender and David Foster wallace of course. And TIN HOUSE another posh favorite has an interview with George Saunders, a cool as hell writer I got the HONOR of introducing four years ago at Barabra's Bookstore in Chi-town.....

Concourse Beckons....

The concourse just seems to be telling me to focus on writing screenplays this semester and (duh) of course I don't listen. I don't want to roll up the cuffs of my sleeves and work in a different genre. I'd rather just milk my own eccentric ego and spaltter out sentences for long, abstruse novels that in all likelihood no one will ever read because the books themselves don't make any sense.

Thursday, October 07, 2004

...and the answer

Whether I'm standing in line for coffee, shuffling between classrooms or pecking out sentences in the computer lab AT LEAST five times a day I've grown accustomed to having people tilt their heads and inquire, "What happened to your hair?"

The answer I've decided to stick with remains the same.

"I did it for a girl..."

Usually the response elicits a wispy, "awwwwww" if asked by a female or a "dude man, your eff'ing whupped,"if male. I then finish my sentence with a grandmotherly appeasing quip:

" mother."

Rehashing over my life, I can honestly say that I did do everything for a girl. For that elusive angel. For that source of feminine ethos; untethered feminine enrgy that flickers what little natural talent I have into a creative inferno. Not to say that I've found her yet (indeed, I've lost and found her many, many times just to find her again) or that she has a finite name that ends in 'a' or certain distinct facial features or that her hair is a seasonal shade of autumn; or that she exists but she's playing hard to get or that she really even exists in the first place, but one thing I can honestly say that I know about myself is that I live for her; that she has not only given me life, but she has given my life meaning and It's my job to make her as happy as she's made me.

My hope is that all my Brothers reading this out there realize the power of feminine glory. It's not a bad mantra to live your life by and if you haven't realized it, my brothers, you were probably the sort of guy in high school who always thought people were looking at you in the locker room, even though there was nothing there.

Wednesday, October 06, 2004

Midterm Melee and Wayfarer Express

Exactly six months from today I'll be stepping off a train in Oakland and kickin' it with fellow beloved blogster daniela, helping her prepare for INSIGHTS WEST at Bosch. I've opted to Amtrak it out to California so that I'll have ample time to write. It'll be my first trip out to the Pacific coast. Can't wait!!!!!

Now back to mulling for midterms......

Tuesday, October 05, 2004

Vacant Heart Arbor

Inevitable just occured. Had the long, overdue run in with Swissy-Missy. "You cut your hair. I really liked your long hair." It was one of those hollow conversations between two people who have been inside each other who just stare at the ground and scrutinize each other's shoes. We made direct eye contact maybe once. We nodded a lot. We didn't embrace. Unlike my spiritual sistuh's loving assesment a few weeks back that "david is david is always david" I was off. I couldn't think of anything witty, charming, dapper to say. In fact, I couldn't be more OFF if I used mosquito repellent for cologne. She walked into Jester's, appeared before my face. I ruffled the paper and inopportunely flapped open to the obituaries. I asked about her school. She inquired about my writing.It was like we were standing on a broken down pier watching that vessel that was once our bodies tow off into the oceanic horizon. Eventually all that existed of potentially "us" turned out to be nothing more than a crusty, nocturnal fleck unconsciously batted from the lids of her eyes with an errant finger.

To compound matters, I was with my friend SARA. I like her a lot cause she's from a rustic, southern Illinois town. She's gentle and kind with a benevolent heart. She teaches elementary school children how to use please and thankyou and the linguitic coating that separates and a vowel from a consonant. Sara's no where near the S.M. rock-star-muse caliber, no where near the calloused slants creviced on the far end of my left palm. But her smile makes me feel special.

Anyway, after the S.M. altercation, I kept calling sara Clare. I have no reason why. It was clare. I called her Clare three times.

"She's just a friend, Clare. Sorry, Sara."

Mistuh D sulks too much. Loves too much. wants too much. Mistuh D needs to focus on his writing and try not get hurt.

Saturday, October 02, 2004

Figure this one out....

I dreamt last night that I had built a log cabin somewhere in a remote Valley in Montana and it was a very Tori Amos winter outside, phallic icicles; gables of bleach white snow, prismatic flakes falling like scattered constellations--inside I was with Swissy-Missy; the tangental dream angel that nocturnally represents the universality of the female genus--that elusive Other I find myself getting glimpses of in temporal daytime, the sleek lavender shadow of her body at dusk...the totality of my creative urges splattered at the lips of her every my dreams we were drinking cider and making love in a bed heaped with afghans and blankets and at the end our bodies formed one vessel before separating and I kissed her forehead and she asked me, simply, to read to her which I did. I read Lorrie Moore's Bird's of America outloud, accompanied by the scent of candles, volleying my vision between the printed sentence and her dried-sweaty forehead which glistened like a frozen pond.

And it was perfect. I watched her body form alphabetical shapes and her lips grunt vowels as she rubbed up against me. My voice seemed to lull and tame the subtle flagellations of her body and I realized midway through that it was really Missy who was holding me up. It was Missy (Universal Centerfold of the Cosmos) that received my warbled sentences. It was her presence that I was living for--that I had sworn my allegiance to and I was content. I was happy. I had nestled my every creative and sensual and spiritual impetus into one pocketed moment that had somehow effaced all notion of time to produce one minute of peace.

At that moment I left my body. I saw myself holding the girl of my dreams and then, I watched as my body pulled out of my body; like I was struggling to slough a pair of wranglers before stepping into a pissing-hot shower.

I watched the two people (myself and the female) exhaust prayers on the bed as one pulsating organ. I was naked and the snow tempest whipped and slapped precipitating static on the side of the cabin I had built. I stepped outside and was attacked by a bear. A grizzly brown mammalian ancestor. I was naked and the bear swiped its paw in the direction of my genital. I then lunged at the feral beast, wresting my every fiber into its mane. It was like I had to protect the couple (myself and dreamissy) from the advances of the creature. It was like I knew if I didn't wound the creature the couple inside would die.

Eventually the bear lodged his paws into my genital and I writhed with furor. I lashed back at him, digging my nails into his coat, using my teeth to slowly peel his own fur from him. When I was finsinhed the bear was a pulpy carcass of bones and meat and I donned his own hide like a cape; a trophy for my kill.

When I turned around I was all alone. The cabin seemed to have never been built and the girl of my dreams was nowhere to be found. It was as if they had been scared off by my true spiritual essence while I was trying all the while to protect them.

Only then did I feel cold. The bristling wind unizpped my every pore. I tugged the bear hide tightly around my limbs but I still felt completely isolated and alone. My whole body was one frosty windshield that was about ready to crack. I felt like I had spent all this time killing myself for something and someone that did not exist and that all I had to show for my hard work was the furry remnant of the creature that had wounded my masculinty and left me out in the cold to die.

Wednesday, September 29, 2004

Another very Homer Simpsonesque....AHHHHHH!!!!

Yesterday was the last day as a Literary pauper and shit, wow, still deflated. It's like I thought I was getting in the ring with Mini Me and it turned out to be Mike Tyson in his prime. I think that my soul is shaped like a clogged basin because spirtually I'm beginning to drain. I wrote a beautiful story for my screenwriting class (worked seven hours on it) and the story for some reason didn't post. I was composing on a cyber-filter titled BlackBoard and I wasn't able to copy and past the Blackboard Document to MS WORD to save it. While I was tryin', however, the story dissipated--was yanked from beneath the unsuspecting grasp of my fingertips, like a Vegas magician yanking a cloth from under a glass of milk.

I wasn't even attached to the story until three hours later when I sat down to pelt it out again and the words all of a sudden decided to book a cruise and head south for the season. I couldn't even scribe a petty postcard image. No foreign stamps. No having a Great time! No wish you were here. No nuthin. Just static blurbs.

So I hoofed the mile back to Uncle Mike's asylum where he chewed me out and told me that perhaps the concourse had snatched it away from me because of either 1.) ego or two 2.) the scene I wrote where a young altar boy is raped by the priest in front of the statue of the Virgin Mary and then forced to confess his "sin" to the same priest afterwards.

I was pretty pissed (maybe I just lost the story b/c Bradley has an incompetent server). Mike just wants me to write solely baha'i books, which of course, I would love to do only I can't right now for various reason, primarily being my Christ-fearing mother would be more supportive of her son if he were writing a fire-safety manual for gay Cub scout leaders rather than "blasphemously"taking spiritual dictation from something she cannot understand.

Oh well. Dropped a class so know I only have 12 hours a week, a HUGE turgid academic senior project being one of them. Went upstairs and, after watching my middle-aged neighbor give me her own version of Bloggality (She had to have known her shades were drawn--she's been baking me cookies) Uncle Mike called me downstairs and we had a long talk. When I asked him for advice at school he retorted a question back into my face.

"What did Ceasar say?"


"What did Ceasar say?"

David (nonplussed): Pizza! Pizza!

Uncle Mike : NO!!!!! "Divide and Conquer."

So I charted out my itinerary. Six hours for writing screenplays Mon-Wed-Fri. Tues and Thurs is reserved for senior project. The reading for my other two classes are conducted a week ahead. I'm still working the graveyard shift until Nov 1st., but that will give me a little extra-cash to save up.

Perhaps loosing something valuable is not all that bad. My very Christ-abiding (socialogically naive, Republican Kowtowing, high-school act vanishing) parents were married five years before I was born. My mom is a VERY spiritual, but in Christ-cowering sense. She gets up every morning and prays and annotates and highlights her dog-earred bible. ALL she's ever wanted for her son was to have him, "Be like David in the bible and have good Christian friends." The irony in this is that when I was getting handjobs from highschool teachers Mama and Papa bear didn't know how to handle it.

Anyway, Mom was pregnant once before she had me. Parents were really excited, you know "gift from God," and everything. About three months after mom went public with her pregnancy my aunt in town became pregnant. Everyone was rejoicing and buying baby clothes and erecting cribs until one morning mom woke up and locked herself in the bathroom and started to cry. Everything came out from between her knees. The nursery was half-finished and mom had miscarried. Three months after the slated birth of their child, my aunt gave birth to a healthy girl.

(There's a touching scene concerning this story. When my father's skin was copper from the chemo and he was on his deathbed, eveyone in our family was telling him who he was going to see in Heaven. My sister beth rubbed my father's feet and told him that he was going to be with a child he had never met.)

Spiritual, God-fearing mom who'd harbored a pretty shitty life anyway (hardcore alcolic father) said that that was the one time in her life that she had trouble praying. She found a verse in the bible that said something like, "....I will still praise thee," only she couldn't then because obviously she felt a certain spiritual void not having a child while my cousin Amanda was being coddled around the Thanksgiving table.

The irony is that mom and dad got pregnant almost immediately after the miscarriage. The result being, yeah, mom gave birth to a crazy, once long haired writer.

I don't feel bad bloggin' about this. Five Christmasses ago, (I was drunk) I was reading late at night by the spangle of the Christmas tree and went to move some books. Out from the center of the books fell a spiral noetbook with the words PRAYER LOG eteched on top. Curious I opened it up. I found that my mom had each page dated, going back till about 1994. Each page was also categorized into two sections: Requests and Praises. While my sister's seemed to get al the "Praises" Mom's maladroit borderline-basketcase son was subject to a stampede of Requests. Mom prayed that I would find "Good Christian friends," she prayed that I would quit smoking and drinking as much as I did, she prayed that I would join the Christian cadres on campus, she prayed that I would be "Pure,".....and geezus, I'm reading this thinking BITCH.....never once when all the sexual-molestation shit was going on did you even consider allowing me to switch schools. Never once did you ask what I want to do with my life, never once did you tell me that you would support me, never once did you take me ouit for a college visit.

....ahhhh, nothin' like reading the mother's makeshift blogg.

Mom and I are still working on our rapport. I'm sure the moment my book/stories sell she'll whip-out the picture of me as a two-year beating on my father's Smith-Corona, the ironic caption ...maybe I'll be a writer someday. It's fine. I love my mom very much and I'm convinced (psychologically) that when I went through a three year period only "dating" females between the ages of thirty-three and forty-five, I was subconciously trying to get something back from my mother that was lost.

....after all, if your not occasionally lost, how can you ever expect someone to find you.

Tuesday, September 28, 2004

A very Homer Simpsonesque "D'OH"

Shit! Missed a.m. classes for the second day in a row. Alarm went off around 7:45:

Burgeoning collegiate scholar David: Time to get up and contribute to your overpriced intellctual discourse!

Blue collar workcoholic David who just crashed two hours earlier: Go to Hell!

I hate missing class. I hate coming ill-prepared for class. I hate bullshitting in class. I hate that my fellow peers come to me for insight (one even called me a 'genius'--how flattering!) Oh well, Loans kick in tomorrow and if it's one thing I've learned in the past month of joining the majority of the planet in poverty is that, Thank god that T.C. doesn't stand for Tomorrow's Credit.

After my father died I had a hard time writing. I'm very blessed because, even if my writing totally sucks on days, the verbal floodgates inside my chest are almost always cranked open, allowing the slushing torrent of words to splash out of me in dizzying degrees of gushing hydraulics. This stopped for about a month after my old man peeled off his earthly sweater. I couldn't write. I was breaking up with my crazy girlfriend who kept tossing shot glasses in my direction at the bar as she told me how good she was for me. I was snorting cocaine to help get me through the nights where I stood listlessly at the low blue glower of MS Word, waiting for the tempest of words to gradually drain from my fingertips.

So then what happened? I was teaching English at an inner city Alternative school and a Seveneteen year old 250 pd. 7th grader named Marcus fell off his desk and broke his teacher's leg, only the hospital missed diagnosed it (like they misdiagnosed my father's ailment for years) and said that, no, it wasn't broken or fractured only gout. Gout?

All I knew about gout was the Benjamin Franklin had Gout i.e., it was a gaudy rich man disease.

So for about month I hobbled around on a broken leg. I was between cars (and hell if mom was going to help) so I limped the mile-and-a-half to and from work every day, very, very slowly, biting my upper lip in agony, wondering when my gout medication was going to kick in.

I switched hospitals. The cute doctor who scrutinized the X-rays said that it looked like my leg was broken for a long time. Another Doctor, who dabbled in writing, kept calling me Hemingway, claiming that I was a word warrior and because i hated standing still when they gauzed and cast my leg. I actually went through "three" casts because I kept trying to push my recovery. Kept trying to heal myself.

When I went back to work the next morning my dearest student Sherita scribbled on the side of my cast:

Mister V.B.- You is SO UGLY!!!!!! Kids! Even when I'm crippled, hell if I could get them to write proper english.

Easter break came and I still had only my cast to keep me company. I was for the most part, an immobile twenty-four year old alcoholic trying to understand what was going on, but the words finally floated back in my direction, each word flapping, chirping, gradually floating down onto the computer screen, one bird at a time.

I found a cafe within limping distance and had only one motto to adhere to: Your ass doesn't move.

I sat. I already had a strong (yet messy) 600 pages of "the book with the long title." The book was about a year and a half old then. Everyday I sat at the cafe with a blank page, my only proviso was--you sit on your ass and don't leave until you've coherently filled up ten of these white pages.

That's when the magic happened. I was in pain. I was sad. I no longer had a father but as I sat with my legged propped up at C'est Ce Bon swigging java refills, slowly the lingusitic glittter that I've, for some reason, dedicated my life to gradually tapped onto the screen. The sentences began to incubate, peck free and hatch. It was like the tide was finally coming in, washing over the hot sand, cooling off my burnt neck with a quick nocturanl breeze.

Monday, September 27, 2004

"Call for the High Road Once Again...."

I'm missing one class to finish pelting out a nerdy-sounding academic response to a lit theory class! I'm also hiding out from Nazi creditors. I had my finances perfectly delineated before the screwballs in Swords Hall (Where my own Grandma worked for 33 years!) decided to put a halt on my loans til' this wed. If Uncle Mike hadn't slipped me a five spot I'd be living off of pocket lint and cold coffee.

"The text (or message) serves as the crux in Jakobson’s basic schemata of linguistic communication. It is through the text that the reader comes into contact with the Context, the Addresser, and the Contact Code. Using Jakobson’s text oriented schemata, the reader is capable of, as Sheldon notes, actualizing, “what would otherwise only remain potentially meaningful” (Sheldon 48)."

Came home beat from work last night. I still look pretty good for averaging less than five hours of sleep the past half-decade. I need to squeeze the emotional harness on excessive caffeine. I need to eat better, or at least eat. I need to flush out that breakthrough story so I don't drown in the jaundice, stale hallways of academia. Or maybe so I don't just plain drown. Most importantly I need my loans to kick in so I can become a student. I've NEVER had a semester where I wasn't juggling at least thirty-hours of menial labor on the side in addition to a full load in the classroom. Normally I have little-to-midland trouble, but this semester I'm honestly drained. I'm sick of serving my Mara ( Mara=Bradley sick opulent study body) --A Mara who has short-hair and daddy's trust fund and who gives me shit at the Reserves desk just because they lack the perspicacity of the avg. toddler to open a net file.

Seems like I'm always in stiff competetion with these snooty short-haired northside lads. I'm envious of their country-clubs, their cruisers, their clothes, their deep pocketed parents who toss out cash like stale new years eve confetti to the college or interest of their spoiled progenies choice. Parents' who support their careers.

The envy is mutual, I suppose. I know my boobless Mara's are envious of my poetry, my drug-connections, my street smarts; they'd stomp their Steppford Wives out of the bedroom in a second for a round with the feral,untethered females I seem to attract. They're envious of the implicit freedom I've found in having zippo stock in material commodities and having everything stored between the lobes of my ears, the ribbed prison of my chest, the calloused tips of my avid fingers, incessanlty chiseling away at the topography of the keyboard until I linguistically sculpt the face of the one person I seem to have lost. The person I couldn't be with because, unlike them, I was broke and my father was shaped less like a millionaire and more like an ash tray exhausted and filled from the heavy smoke of happy hour.

Bakhtin employs Onegin’s authorial centered schemata to enforce his notion of textual importance and language systmes. The text is instrumental in forming a zone of dialogic content with Onegin’s centralized author. An appreciation for language systems such as polyglossia and monoglossia arises when the reader notes the interface between text and author. As Bakhtin notes, “The author participates in the novel (he is omnipresent in it) with almost no direct language of his own. The language is a system of languages that mutually and ideologically interanimate each other.” Using this schemata Bakhtin observes that, “It is impossible to describe and analyze (the novel) as a single unitary language” (Lodge 110).


Ick!Too much pessimism! Too much arid academic laced prose! Just got back from a spontaneous meeting with my creative writing prof. He forced me to sit down and shoved the first three pages of his novel WHITE LIGHT in my face.

"I've spent over 1000 hours just writing these three pages over and over again." He said.

Three prismatic beautifully well-written pages. Each word a delicate verbal pedal, pluck one and the paragraph topples like a game of drunk college jenga.

My prof. talks with a looming nostalgia; too much time monopolized in academia trying to make it as a writer, not enough time being able to write. I gave him the best advice I know.

"Don't worry about rewriting. Just write everyday. If you do, things will happen. "

"We'll talk about grad school sometimes." My prof. says. "You never know, it's all about money. If you have enough money, you'll be able to do well. But maybe they'll give you money if they like your stories. They're crazy stories, but maybe some liberal arts college will gnaw into them and foist them off as the next big thing."

"Yeah, maybe" I concede. I try to be positive. Writing is a very isolated profession, one, at times, that pines for attention. The act of a solitary shadow brushing himself against a pebbled shore of subatomic thoughts and words, yelling out for momentary companionship, hoping some facelss reader will care enough about your hobby to hold you in her palms and slowly savor each labored syllable.

"Just write everyday." I tell him, my hubris is speaking. "And jettison everything you know about literary theory. Just have fun with it."

The prof inquries about my friend Nick the writer. Like all of us, Nick's sacrifieced everything to have a life in the arts. Nick's a few years older than my bloggin' buddies.

What I tell Nick is that we can't hold onto it (this writing) all the time. Can't get obssesed to the point where the husband always has to know who his nuptial half is hanging with.

"What I tell Nick is this, 'We can't let this lifeboat become an anchor. We can't let this one thing that we've invested all our faith in to save us, sink us.'" That's what I tell my professor. Crazy david, who writes stories his mom won't even read. Crazy Nick whose parents have disowned him because he shapes sentences everyday and may not be paid in three years.

"Crazy life," I tell my prof, telling him that I'd feel honored to read his manuscript once he prints it out. "If we write everyday, things will happen."

I tell him this. Crazy David who never sleeps and who's been an undergraduate slacker on and off for eight years and who still can't get his own life straight.


Uncle Mike and I talk about poverty and smile. Mike's just purchased a huge house so he can hold Baha'i socials. We both have checks scheduled to come in on the 29th.

"It seems like the Concourse really doesn't care about money." I say.

"No, they really don't!" Uncle Mike comments, almost excitedly. It is two in the morning. I've been working all day. Mike is watching television.

"It seems like humor they approve of, and finances are just secondary."

"I'll tell you why," Mike says. He grows quiet. There is subtle glow to his face like a copper penny just dished out from the wash.

"The Bab, Bahá'u'lláh, `Abdu'l-Bahá, Shogi Effendi." He counts there names off slowly, granting a finger's weight to each.

"They all could have been very wealthy if they wanted too," He adds. "Bahá'u'lláh came from one of the most wealthy families in Persia. He easily could have had the foresight to siphon off all of his wealth in different accounts before he was exiled and imprisoned." Mike notes. I've been working all day, all weekend. I should be exhausted. When Uncle Mike talks I become alert and keen.

"Shoggi Effendi, too" Mike adds. "We have records of how much he spent. He was very frugal. He gave up coffee for a year because he thought it was too much of a luxury."

I smile. Mike talks about his time in Hafai.

"I was having dinner with Khanum one night and she said that when she and Shoggi Effendi were married he only had one good suit. At the time of his death, he only owned one good suit--the same suit."

I smile. It seems like everything that I hardcore stress out about will eventually fade into oscillating protons and neutrons whose meted weight is significant yet invisible. That this albatrose of asphyxiated fiscal burden, will pass. That what we as human beings place material emphasis on; my abhorrence for foppy rich boys, my own incurred debt, my workalholicsm, my dreams of being a writer, all of it, at times, seems of little importance.

After all if one lifetime suit was good enough for the guardian of the world's religion.....

" Call for the high road once again
Come the day of judgment
Where will you be, my friend?"

-Freudian Press, Lattergasthall Symphony

Saturday, September 25, 2004

The importance of Mara Megan...

So much for confessional candor. It's like I'm bloggin' my sins in front of a faceless friar who has already read them on-line. Anyway, the lesson I learned from M &M (through a corona of stained tears and burnt out years) is one of patience. When I arrived back home from my crazy love affair with Megan the inside of my chest felt like a box of broken Christmas bulbs. Every vector of my chest was shattered and I cried everynight (Wuss)....this was eight years ago this pending October, which as Before Sunrise auteur Richard Linklater notes in WAKING LIFE is that time, too, has a way of chiseling and creating a new identity for us, "our cells are completely regenerating every seven years. We've already become completely different people several times over. And yet, we always remain quintessentially ourselves."

Anyway, when I arrived back home from my eternal tryst I felt completely worthless, like a crinkled up back pocket receipt dated from a product that no longer worked, only my heart was that aged product. My sisters had very promising careers as musicians and I was, well, the writer, but my parents really didn't seem too keen on anything I did as long as I didn't smoke in the house.

According to Sister A, the miniature slants splintered on the thumbless side of my left palm indicate the number of times I'm suspect to watch my heart slip and shatter in front of me like wet delf China. Sister A looked like she was squinting through magnifying lenses when she deeply perused the inside of the hand (it was a very mystical experience) so I sincerely take to heart her prognostication that I'll have my heart broken four times in my life. Megan was the first time I got my heart broken, Vanessa was the second (can't wait to meet numbers three and four) and here is why Megan matters:

I used to only write in black ink and notebook paper and when I arrived home from my seasonal sojourn with Mara Megan I locked my door and transcribed the scroes (50, 60?) of poems written for Megan into the computer. I slaved relentlessly, pecking the swirls of my aching fingers into the keyboard like a young chick gradually hatching from an egg.

I worked my ass off. Although I was an accomplished vizionary, I was a very young, verbally naive writer. The poems were pretty shitty poems, although their heart was in the right place. I wrote and I wrote and finally, after a week of tears constantly canaling down my cheekbones ( everytime I saw my bluish reflection in the computer screen I thought it was her) was done. I watched my newborn take it's first breath as each sheet slowly buzzed and whizzed, slowly exiting the slits of my parents early nineties printer.

I collated the poems and bound them in a notebook, awarding the script with the calligraphic title POEMS OF LOVE AND ARDOR FOR MEGAN KRISTIN.....

My first completed book of poems after high school. I didn't care. It wasn't about the writing . It wasn't solely about me. It was trying to figure out what the hell was going on. Where was I? Why am I here? What does it mean to watch your heart droop in front of you like it's taking a bow after the final encore of a tragic Italian Opera. Why did my sisters have promising futures and all I had was the promise of happy hour every friday?

What I did next was what Megan gave me. I took my newborn manuscript and stuffed it in a shoebox manger for sixteen months. I had read Megan many of her poems tete-a-tete on my visit, but I burrowed my blood sonnets in a Doc Marten shoebox. I refrained from writing or calling her. All the love I had for Megan pulsated and flapped in the beaded lines of my poems, a book of poems I wrote with the intent of having each line reflect the forever smile of her face, the forever scent of her breath, the inside warmth of her mouth.

During those sixteen months I quit writing poems, wrote a HORRIBLE david foster Wallace influenced novel on basketball and Opera (?) dropped out of college to work as a supervisor at Barnes and Nobles, lost (or maybe found) my virgintiy to a rich Bradley girl from the suburbs.

Everything in my life seemed perfect. I had more cash than I had ever had. I wasn't in debt. I was writing a fair amount. I had a beautiful girlfriend named Jana that I took out on lavishing dates every Friday. I had VERY short hair. I wore cool ties. I talked about the books I would write someday.

Even my mom seemed to actually think I had some dormant potential stowed in my skeleton.

On Valentines day '98 I lied to my parents and took the weekend off from work and Jana rented a hotel room in Chicago. She showed me her old high school. Her old house. We attended Mass together Sunday morning. She introduced me to friends that were special to her. We couldn't keep our fingers from snapping towards each others body.

The Sunday night I came home I brewed coffee and decided to reread Joyce's A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man. I can't recall the exact time (11:11) but it was close when the phone reverberated and a familair soft velvet-laced voice inquired if I was home.

It was Megan.

She came back to me at the most inopportune time in my life, but she came back to me, and I did the only thing I could do. I welcomed her. I sent her the book of poems written sixteen months earlier. She said she was speechless.

I got drunk and wrote Megan's name all over my body with different colored markers. I wanted her to reclaim old territory. My girlfriend Jana figured that something was going on when she saw looped smudges somersaulting across my body. I had to tell her the truth.

Someday maybe I'll blogg about the next four months that followed. I had a timeless afternoon with Megan watching RENT in Chicago and I can still show you the corner of State and Adams where last we kissed. Jana was rightfully furious and rightfully fooled around with people to make me envious. A lot of it's a blur. It ended with me going back to Jana, partly because she was here, partly because I wasn't even twenty-one and, as is typical with males, my brain was located beneath my navel, partly because no one can really know for certain what they really want, no one can tell you from the outset how things will work out in the beginning of any relationship; all we have to follow is an inexplicable tug orchestrated by the fingertips of invisible angels.

Obviously Jana and I didn't last. She got married about a year after we broke up. When I saw a picture of her in her wedding dress I just had to smile. Thank God it wasn't me in the picture next to her.

But what Megan gave me was the fullfillment of Walt Whitman's proveb:

O ME! O life!... of the questions of these recurring;
Of the endless trains of the faithless—of cities fill’d with the foolish;
Of myself forever reproaching myself, (for who more foolish than I, and who more faithless?)
Of eyes that vainly crave the light—of the objects mean—of the struggle ever renew’d;
Of the poor results of all—of the plodding and sordid crowds I see around me;
Of the empty and useless years of the rest—with the rest me intertwined;
The question, O me! so sad, recurring—What good amid these, O me, O life?


That you are here—that life exists, and identity;
That the powerful play goes on, and you will contribute a verse.

Blogging's a lot like putting your heart into an empty gin bottle and then tossing it out as far as you possibly can into the ocean of cyberspace. You never know whose shore the bottle is going to brush up on. You never know who's going to uncork the capsule of your life's story. Never know who's going to be moved by it. You never know (i.e., Joe Propinka) what literary genius is going to stalk you.

(Well, maybe if your first name is ARYA, you know....)

I have no plans on future correspondence with Megan. The last two times I've wandered around Madison I didn't even bother to look her up (She would probably hang up anyway). I contacted her on 9-11 and when my father died three years ago, she was the only voice I needed to hear. We talked for a long time the Saturday following his funeral and we both cried. I don't know how it's possible to hold people over the computer screen or to hold people over the wireless warble of a cell phone, but I held her that day, on the phone and we drained tears from one emotionally fatigued socket.

The greatest gift that Megan gave me was just the ability to write. I'm still developing it (when I get a rejection letter I take it way too much to heart)... I've opted to forge a career that pays in a foreign currency. What I learned from Megan was that, even if I write something and put it in a shoebox for sixteen months (or don't hear from anyone in over a year) that that wordy "something" still has the possibility of growing and I have the simple duty of giving or at least trying to give as much of myself as the concourse will perhaps allow.

Friday, September 24, 2004

Mara Megan

When you visit Sister A's blogg, beautiful mystical things happen. I clicked on her DADDY DAUGHTER BEDFRAME (?) link and was directed to something called MY SEARCH. Because I'm perpetually single and crazy I typed in the name of one of my former muses and found a picture of her on line. This is Megan (See Heading Avenue Symphony 1996 entry), and the last time I saw her was one day before I first met Sister A, in Madison Wisconsin, en route to Green Lake.

Things with Megan and I have LONG since dissolved. Her snug smile was the french kiss that planted many beautiful poems and some wonderful romantic sojourns (as well as exorbitant phone bills)...I still think of her when I hear Bob Dylan's GIRL OF THE NORTH COUNTRY and e-mail her sporadically (though it's clear that she want s zippo to do with my world) Overall she's one of the two/three females I can really say that I gave it all up for at a young age and it just didn't work out between us. Which is a blessing, I think. I still love her now (in a timeless, poetic way) and I don't think if we would have gotten married at 19 or 20 (our golden years) I would have that occasional sunset tinkle.

Anyway, here's her picture (so my sisters get a lil' idea of the sort of girls I'm capable of falling madly in love with--as if you don't already know!).....a refulgent galaxy pinwheeling out of control deep in the heart of D Universe....

Boy, if she ever reads this, am I ever gonna get shit!

If you're travelin' in the north country fair,
Where the winds hit heavy on the borderline,
Remember me to one who lives there.
She once was a true love of mine.

If you go when the snowflakes storm,
When the rivers freeze and summer ends,
Please see if she's wearing a coat so warm,
To keep her from the howlin' winds.

Please see for me if her hair hangs long,
If it rolls and flows all down her breast.
Please see for me if her hair hangs long,
That's the way I remember her best.

I'm a-wonderin' if she remembers me at all.
Many times I've often prayed
In the darkness of my night,
In the brightness of my day.

So if you're travelin' in the north country fair,
Where the winds hit heavy on the borderline,
Remember me to one who lives there.
She once was a true love of mine.

Thursday, September 23, 2004

Earth is Heavy and Full of Autumn

Today is the first official full day of autumn, Season of Hawthorne and Whitman and Thoreau. Shakespeare dubbed autumn "The time of year thou mayest in me behold," and I can feel the atmospherical tilt of the earth begin to crack open, can feel the wind begin to whip and flagellate against the brittle calcium of the trees, can feel the earnest crackle of the temperature plummet, can see car windows shielded in a thin film of morning frost, can see my breath whistling out of my mouth in a vaporous locomotive stream of carbon dioxide.

It is autumn. The feeling of Friday night and high school football games beaming against the intoxicating glint of a chalky field fraught with hormonally-fueled teenagers bearing helmets and shoulder pads in lieu of american armor. The thick, drapery of night pierced by the movie-screen forehead of the woman you are in love with, the cidery thick-ashy scent of a homecoming bonfire swirling smoke-signals off in the distance as you hold her close, sharing the same thermos or bottle, staring heavily into the same starry quilt looming above.

It is autumn. Political placards salute groomed yards. Expired bushels of leaves are raked into an abandoned funeral pyre. The sunsets seem to dissipate, offering the world a nuclear-tang; a refulgent orange glower before the lavender hue of dusk quietly errupts from the east and you realize that you are part of this planetary vessel--a vessel which pulsates and thrives and swoops through seasons. You realize that you are a part of this planetary bulb. That you are 93 million miles away from the spacial thermoculcear socket that cranks out life, cranks out every feeling you have ever known.

It is autumn. Season of pumpkins and gords, sallow cornhusks slaughtered on the side of the road, reaped and ploughed for harvest. Abandoned halloween candy splashed over sewer drains like a chirstened cornucopia. Christmas catalogues the size of Hindu Vedas stuffed into mail slits.

It is Autumn. Uncle Larry brews coffee at 4am on a Saturday before he loads his remington and drives his truck out lone Smithville road, quietly camouflaging his post, waiting for the sprinkle of deer to meander and trod, waiting , patiently, before the calloused swirl of his fingertip snaps the trigger and he hauls his hobby back home to his garage, gutting the carcass with the skill of a neaderthal artist.

It is autumn. A young boy who is seventeen discovers Whitman and writes sloppy poems. He wades his body out into the alphabetical pond of sound and experience. He writes about the creature he held the previous summer. Writes about the moment of self-discovery, writes stanza's the way he feels her body is composed, the way his heart is composed. He writes in sentences that reaches out of the frame of the page, sentences that kick free from the harnessed academic notation of convention and form, sentences that will somehow lead him into her gentle palms again, in a dimmed candle room, where he writes all alone, his heart carved like a rococo jack-o-lantern.

It is autumn. The northern hemipshere is chanting out its seasonal swan song and the sight of her body and the proximity of her flesh keeps your spirit peppermint tea warm through the thick evergreen descent of winter.

Wednesday, September 22, 2004

The Mill broke down, it's broken still....

One more week of being poor. Apparently Bradley is holding my loans until the 29th for various reasons. Shit! I feel like a battered protagonist in a Bruce Sprinsteen song, working my ass off down at the dock for my high-school sweetheart who's put on a few pounds since our premature pregnancy and marriage.

"Now I been lookin' for a job but it's hard to find
Down here it's just winners and losers
and don't get caught on the wrong side of that line
Well I'm tired of comin' out on the losin' end
So honey last night I met this guy and I'm gonna do a little favor for him
Well I guess everything dies baby that's a fact
But maybe everything that dies someday comes back
Put your hair up nice and set up pretty
and meet me tonight in Atlantic City"

Perhaps it'll be all good. I've been living off of "dribbling" checks and TV dinners. I've had a hard time focusing and trying to tame my Mara. example, I almost went off and cussed out my prof. the other day. he gives me a "C" on a paper then cancels four class periods. I can understand the "C" (the paper was only worth 5 percent of my total grade) but canceling class means that I've just flushed $600 down the financial latrine. Unbelievable--this is the prof. who makes it a HUGE deal that I'm a upin' cumin' writer, god love 'em! He wrote a book twenty years ago that he's still trying to get published. Am I his dart board? Bullseye. I'm still gonna be writing twenty-years from now no matter what, but I'll be damned if my future in the english language solely consists in scribbling
in the side margins of Freshman compositions.

Oh well, nothing like indulging in a lil' poverty every now and then to make you understand the human condition. Uncle Mike has lots of money ( and boy does he ever give it all away asking for nothin' back in return) but we got into a verbal bullsfight over monetary merit yesterday afternoon. Uncle Mike lashed at me and told me that I was dwelling too much on fiscal woes. I bit back at him. He told me that 98 percent of ALL mammals are in the same boat I'm in. I told him 98 percent of all mammals don't risk their health the way I've been by working all the time. He told me HA, go to a third world country. I told him fine, lets go, I'd welcome the simplicity of a twelve hour work day.


Another irony is that, instead of giving MARA tea, I seduce her. Every college girl I've ever dated, slept with, fallen head-over-Doc. Martens in love with has been a TRUE scholar, i.e., Valedictorian, brilliant, full-ride, ect. and it's like, "Shit. Am I only dating these girls because, subconciously, they have something I want?"
Nine-times-outta-ten it's always my workoholicism that spawns a fissure in our relationship. I come home tired or I come home and just want to write or i come home and she's on the rag and we both get into it because the date on the milk has expired and I made an ill-time joke about her mother. Petty stuff like that.

Of course there's no dating pre-requisite, but subconcioulsy it's like we're abacus beads that smack together
in a nuclear clack of magnetic attraction and then oust the "other" out of our spurious dreams eternally.

One more week. I can do one more week (any more and I'm gonna drown a midget) but I can do one more week.

'Bout a week ago or so Daniela wrote a brilliant entry about trekking out her life's path. It was a saturday morning and I had to work a LONG day and I elicited a comment about the path being a lonely one at times. Faceless Ace commented and said that he thought I was wrong, that the path wasn't essentially one of emotional destitution. I have to disagree. It's a beautiful path. The sunsets are a luminous, but at times its hard, at times
it's damn lonely (if it wasn't we wouldn't feel compelled to blogg all the goddamn time) and at times you feel completely vacant inside. The most important thing is that you're still capable of feeling. You're still capable of dreaming. The most important thing is knowing that deep down inside as long as you have a pulse, you're participating in the life you feel that you were meant to lead.

That said never give up. Keep fighting for that child inside. Keep dreaming and one day you'll wake up and realize that, yes, it wasn't all that bad, even when times were shitty, we still had hope, we still had dreams, we still had the capacity to change and to bring music into a crowded dancefloor that is patiently waiting to groove to that perfect song.

Tuesday, September 21, 2004


Of all things, I have to give a cinematic presnetation of Before Sunrise in a half-hour. AHHHHH!!!! It should be fun, crazy romantic wayfarer that I am.

Here's the (much slaved over) notes for my lecture:

The Viennese linguistic philosopher Ludwig Wittgenstein once noted that, “If eternity is understood not by endless temporal duration, but by timelessness, than he who lives in the present lives eternally.” I find the rudiments of this quote germane to the cinematic ethos richly espoused in Richard Linklater’s Gen-X gabfest Before Sunrise, partly because the film was shot around Vienna at dusk and partly because, from a linguistic perspective, the movies dialogue serves as the uniting thread sewing the dual-protagonists multi-layered sentences into one pulsating heart.

This notion of eternity as “Timelessness” is evident in Linklater’s late-night café scene. Early in the film Jesse employs the notion of time as a method (or bullshit flirtatious rhetoric) of cozening Celine off the train, beckoning her to consider his talkathon invite as “Time travel from then till now.”

"Think of it like this. Um, uh, jump ahead, ten, twenty years, okay, and you're married. Only your marriagedoesn't have that same energy that it used to have, y'know. You start to blame your husband. You start to think about all those guys you've met in your life, and what might have happened if you'd picked up with one of them, right? Well, I'm one of those guys. That's me. y'know, so think of this as time travel, from then, to now, uh, to find out what you're missing out on. See, what this really could be is a gigantic favour to both you and your future husband, to find out that you're not missing out on anything. I'm just as big a loser as he is, totally unmotivated, totally boring, and, uh, you made the right choice, and you're really happy."

As the café scene convenes Jesse and Celine have already spent five hours together peeling into the other’s swiftly changing view of the planet. They have kissed twice. They have lured the audience into the film through witty chatter and magnetic expressions. The crisp cinematic camera angles at times seems to linger heavily on the “other”, granting generous close-up’s on the brow of the respective listener. The two lovers are slowly beginning to inch towards that monumental precipice of love and leap off. But there are still social apprehensions harbored in this dreamworld dalliance (remember, they just met). Akin to the linguistic games of fellow Viennese philosophers Celine institutes a cunning rhetorical game of her own where, over cold-coffee and lackluster late-night service, Celine pretends to phone home to Paris, informing her best friend the reason why she is not on the train. The scene works partly because of the superb almost spontaneous acting. Without warning Celine starts addressing Jesse as if he really “is” someone else in an effort to discover what her really thinks bout her as an individual. Jesse (shocked, almost confused at first) playfully responds and the result is an epiphanic troika where both actors and the audience are arguably elevated.

The scene starts with cinematic flashes of a Viennese café in the nocturnal hours. There is a table of late-night revelers sobering up after a night of hedonism. There is a shot of a three german philosophers talking in very calculated nods. There is the perfunctory shot of an American yuppie grousing about the service. The entire café is engulfed in stale cigar smoke. Finally a close-up of our lovers meddling with their doctored mochas.

Celine: Okay, now I’m going to call my best friend in Paris who I’m supposed to have lunch with in 8 hours. Okay?

Jesse: (confused, in love) Okay?

There is confusion of Jesse’s behalf. The camera focuses solely on Celine, who is holding out her thumb and pinkie up to her ear and mouth, mimicking a young child and a game of telephone. She begins to reverberate her lips in buzzing drones.

Celine: Pick-up. Pick up the phone.

The camera intermittently skips and focuses intently on Jesse’s confused facial reactions. The clattering din of the café gradually wanes and we are left with simply the two protagonists trying to connect via “playing” a game of telephone. True to the verisimilitude of the film, Celine begins to whiz away to her friend in her idiomatic French. There is more confusion and more flashbacks and eventually Jesse (pretending to be Celine’s friend suggests, “A-uh-I’ve been working on my English, recently, do you wanna talk in English. Just for laughs?”

What follows is a delightful discourse accompanied by cinematic close-ups and dialogic pauses inserted for dramatic effect. Celine avails her phobias and anxieties by play-phone to her best friend in Paris (played on the spot by Jesse) and Jesse, in return dials home to the United States and talks with his best friend (played on the spot by Celine).

The result is an indelible feeling of love and timelessness sculpted by the bonds of dialogue. Both actors are pretending to “be” somewhat else and in the process they “grow” as a singular couple. The culminating finale of the café scene happens when Celene, (Pretending to be Jesse’s best friend from home) declares, “Us men are so stupid. We don’t understand anything about women. They act kind of strange. The little I know them.”

The implicit irony is appreciated and the camera lens zooms back into the smoky dusk of the café, leaving the audience momentarily alone, wafting in this pocketed timeless dream world they have somehow found.

Monday, September 20, 2004

Little David.....Strikes out?

Story of my life, beautiful female thows me a curve ball atop the pitching mound of life and rather than swinging the bat with all my buckled emotional acumen and rounding the bases into the echoed din of the crowd, I decide to salivate like a Pavlovian chiuaua over home plate, staring with dazed donut eyelids and listless limbs into a bewildered reflection of my own puddled drool as the Umpire huffs out a third strike, pointing his tyrannical finger like a gavel into the direction of my isolated dug out.

Well, I need to swing the bat. Especially when it comes to school. Scholastically speaking, I've had a worst September than the Chicago Cubs. I keep swinging the academic Lousiville slugger as hard as I f#$%ing can only to realize that the ball, the elusive, spherical planet has already whiffed past me without my previous knowledge, safely secure in the crass mit of the "published" prof.'s unerring glove.

Published my ass. Their academic articles have as much life as the stats to my grandpa's life-time shuffleboard average. What bothers me is that in all my classes I sit in the front row, ask copious amounts of questions, am always my convivial and crazy (long) haired self and still I get comments like:

"You're just trying to be cute." or "Don't you think you should take this assignment a little more seriously?" or "Brilliant prose but I just can't figure out what you're trying to say?"


Most of these prof.'s I'm real good friends with and they acknowledge me as a burgeoning writer. Which kinda sucks because it's like, "You've written how many words and you're still and undergarduate?"

Check this out, so far this semester I've received nothing higher than a B. A Bee? (of the two assignments I've had turned back). As my gay friends used to say, sugah, I may be dumb, but I ain't stupid.

Perhaps they're just grading me harder because they want to see how I'll react. Fine, this is how I'll react. Everytime I'm in the classroom I'll be ready for the pitch, be ready to hit the ball outta the park on the first swing. Be ready to round the bases and then I'll come back to the plate the next inning, my eyelids fully ajar, my spirit fully ablaze, everything that is inside of me (or rather--toady that I am--whatever the academic geekzoids want me to write for them to get that maraesque A) is sweating out from the top of my brow like a stage curtain about ready to plummet on the final aria.

That said, I'm off to give my professors exactly what they want and hopefully, give them a smile along the way.

Joe Propinka showed up today.....

......Unlike my student loans.

Sunday, September 19, 2004

Will the real Joe Propinka puh-lease stand up?

The suspense curves and thickens. Just received a g-mail from the person claiming to be the elusive and somewhat annoying "Joe Propinka." The address was culled from a very shady hotmail account that left me with zippo clue on who the actual Joe Propinka might be. I guess "Avereage Joe" wants to meet tomorrow at a local coffee shop so it should be interesting to see if he/she/mutant shows up. I'm kinda dubious b/c every two years or so I get seriously stalked (mostly by overtly Gay men)....I had one guy who would even park his SUV in the alleyway behind my parents' garage. He claimed that he was just out 'cruising.'

Anyway, Joe, whoever you are, can't wait to meet you!

Do You David take Thee Mara?

Watched my best friend (name of David also) of sixteen years knot the crinkly strands of love and amor into the matrimonial noose yesterday in a smokey American Legion Hall. The wedding was Country and Western themed, the beer was free, the food was excessive, the bride showed up an hour and a half late. I strutted a cute bridesmaid named Trita down the aisle. I watched people cry. I heard people bitch about how Kat was only marrying David for his money. I heard people bitch that the marriage will never last. I let my best friend borrow my father's silver cufflings (the only relic of him I still own) to embellish his tux. I started a cake fight with fellow groomsmen Bob and Patrick outdoors. We were dressed up like Marlboro Men who just got back from attending the Grand Old Opry. The Vetrean Hall manager yelled at us Cowhands for hurtling chucked pieces of cake and frosting at each other like snowballs, but all in all, a good time was had by all.

Until I "caught" the garter. Due to maladroit junior high motor-skills, when I played little League coach always stationed me in Deep left field. No chance whatsoever of ever having to marshall your feet, extend your emergent elbow and pray to spirit of Joe Dimaggio that the plummeting white sphere perfectly lands smack center in your trembling mit. When Dave sling-shoted the garter I even had my back turned and it fell on my head like a dead, girly nimbus.


October is pending and it's an election year which inevitably must mean that a new rotation of my "cycle" is starting to gradually curve. Tomorrow I get to become a full-time student again. I've been attending classes full-time now for about a year but I've been living off of whatever accumulated lint I've had stowed in my pockets. Now that my loans kicked in, I get a meal plan which means no more living off of Starbucks and stale cereal. I get a few extra pair of jeans, I get to finish (just in time) purchasing the heap of books for the rest of the semester (I'm sick of bullshitting in class) and I get to tell my boss tomorrow that i'll no longer be able to close the library at 3 am every night.

I'm really not a huge fan of the cycle. It feels like I'm trapped. Like whatever recursive loop-hole transipres I can justify with being part of the cycle. I hate that feeling. The feeling that the only way I can harness my life is by justifying it to a pattern. An intermittent design. There's no freedom in that. and I vowed last night that I would hatch out of it. That four years down the line I wouldn't be the same individual that I am today. That I wouldn't remain stuck. that I would grow, that I would hatch, that I would peck my way out of the cyclical shell i've been enclosed in and really find out who I am and what I'm capable of acheiving.

When I arrived home from the wedding and bullshitted with uncle Mike he told me not to worry about it.

"You may never really know why certain things happen in this realm," Uncle Mike said, like a little kid, "Just continues."

Friday, September 17, 2004

Divine Epistle of Light for Joe Propinka

Dear Joe,

Always a pleasure reading your prose!!! It sprints and pulsates, beams across the page like a nuclear locomotive that's just run out of its last strip of rail. Your paragraphs are refulgent, radiant, electric, peppering the page with erudite metnonymic bliss.With ease and facile, you lure the unsuspecting reader into an amphetamine sugar-coated paradise of unparellel imagery that is a delight to swallow. You weave incediary sentences and shaded storylines together, coalescing like neon DNA strands that ferally claws up the back of this readers neck when it reaches that apical moment of human connection, yelling out the name of the faceless elusive author, cosigned to chronicle such splendiferous prose.

It's been fun Joe! You are an author of tremendous talent and I wish you all the best and feel honored to call you a contemporary. I love writing. I try to write books for a living and I've sacrifieced a lot to make ends meet. Your prose is a wish-for song in a jukebox that was previously humming vacant hymns and swan-song soliloquies. Thank you very much for sprinkling the frosting of my bloggs with such unbidden joy!

On a one-to-one basis though, Joe, candidly this shit of you fucking with my mind just doesn't cut it. I use blogging as a writing activity and on-line I'm a confessional welt, blisteringly open with my identity; blisteringly open with who I am as a human being and more importantly, who I'm trying to become as an individual. As an adult. I admit though that I do hide behind the lavender skyline dusk of labored sentences from time to time, but that's what writers do; words are nothing more or less than gauze for battered emotional wounds.

For someone who has not constituted a blogg of your own, you feel compelled to comment on my bloggs. I have no problem with that, and thank you for reading, only I wish you'd be open with your identity. Be more open with exactly "how we have met." This isn't a writer's workshop, this is a blog, and myself, daniela and arya daily shovel out our poetic innards on-line. People who take the time to actually read our bloggs find that we don't have our shit together, that we are bumbling wayfareres, that our thoughts and hearts are often jangled and in dire need of resucitation through each other's comments and support. That said, all this blogg is at times is a poetic-crutch, a feeble wooden spine that gives us assistance, that helps us walk up right when the only way the sprial staircase stumbles is down.

By concealing your true identity, Joe, your simply being unfair to people I love. Guilty, the mysterious aura you cast is alluring, however at this time in my life I've simply sacrifieced too much shit to play petty games. This isn't literary poker, this is life, fucking life and it's simply unfair and arrogant of you to take the time to compose dazzingly prose, flapping your full-house of literati talents in our visages while being elusive with your identity.

I do have my postualtions about who you are, Joe. Kris Weberg is brilliant, writes like you, but would have no reason to hide. Neither would Patrick Mullowney, who lives in New York and is also a brilliant writer. I've always been open with how brilliant and talented I feel Kris and Patrick are.

My ex-girlfriend's Elisa and Vanessa both write like you too. Elisa plays games so you could easily be her, but we left with a common strand of romantic mutality sewn between us. Vanessa, on the other hand, writes like you. She's amazing, Joe and when we dated five years ago I was always envious of all the attention she got. I was sadly Saleri to her Mozart and for a the last four months of our rapport every time I stuck my tongue in her mouth it was green with envy. I'm not proud of how I behaved with Vanessa, Joe. I said some things, did some things that still weight pretty heavily on me today. I fucked up. I mitigated her importance as a human being. She was so brilliant, though! She made my creativity look like pre-cum and she's simply, Joe, the most talented individual I've ever met. Ever held. Ever connected with.

We were purely ego, Joe. Both of us were always trying to one-up the other, and my greatest sin with Vanessa, Joe, was that I never did fully realize just how beautiful the music could have been had we composed our tunes in the same key signature. I didn't have the maturity, didn't have the hurt, didn't have the experience, didn't have the joy realize that we could have been a tour de force with two hands and two gentaila and two streams of gushing wild, long hair, and yet, somehow become a dual unit with only with one smile, one forehead, one deeply pulsating heart burrowed beneath the same pit of flesh.

I never realized this Joe. Like you, I felt almost compelled to cast a cloak over my true desire for union. I feel like I had to thrive under the umbra's of excessive religious residue stung into from my own parents.

I don't know if she still writes, Joe, but I hope she does. The two of you have a lot to offer the world. There's writers who are innately talented and gifted for greatness from utero and there's writers like myself who have to work on it a little bit to make there sentences shine. Joe, you're easily on the Vanessa-Elisa-Patrick-Kris caliber. And I wish you all the best as a writer. If you're trying to red-flag my attention you've had it from the first poetic college town slant you chiseled into the comment section of my blogg earlier this week. I'm a fan of your work, Joe. To bad your elusive identity prevents me from being a fan of you.

If you do see her, if you do see Vanessa, Joe, you need to tell her that I'm sorry for alotta of old shit. Sorry how I treated her. Sorry how I was always envious of her. Sorry for a lot of things. I'm thankful for what she gave me and from time to time I still find myself guzzling down the barren strips of the Manito Black, my right hand listless like a dead cabbage in the seat next to me, in the seat where she used to sit, our hands forming one human bouquet the size of an overly-taxed human heart.

You should really get to know Vanessa, Joe. As an angel she plucks her own quills out from her body and tabs her own blood for inky sentences that are completely capable of capturing the human condition as we know it ('member Tess and Honor?) using my body (or my blogg) as parchment for her immortal sonnets.

Take care Joe. I simply ask that you contact me and avail yourself soon. Tell me how I know you. I'm a full time student and a full time worker and a writer and I don't have time to sop up beautiful drool from the creative chin of an on-line stalker. You seem to be connected to my work (or at least alarmed in a fashion that you feel compelled to comment)...All I ask is that you award me the same pleasure....

All the best, beauty you love be what you do,

David A. Von Behren