Monthly Archives: January 2012

The General’s Mistress

“I loved a man, not a movement,” she said
to the soldiers who found that she shared the man’s bed.
Brave and defiant, she fought as they led
her, the General’s pet, to the General’s shed.

“I loved a man, not a movement,” she read
to the council convened to govern in his stead,
“nor his ambitions. We had plans to wed.
If I’d known of his crimes I’d have certainly fled.”

“I loved a man, not a movement,” she pled
with her hands clasped before her and bright eyes widespread.
She held onto hope even as she tread
to the small wooden block other traitors dyed red.

The short length they marched, the memories sped—
how she ached for his spirit, his body long dead.
“I loved a man, not a movement,” she said,
still it was with a movement a man took her head.

Sonic Death Monkey

I found this slip of paper tucked between the pages in my personal copy of High Fidelity, which is especially strange because it’s not in my handwriting, and I don’t think I’ve ever lent my copy out for anyone to borrow

There’s something about you that
The way your eyes light up
When you
She has the ability to

I can’t keep holding onto your highs
when your lows are crushing me
You yo-yo me AROUND like a


I need to be strong, I know
That is there
I DELETED your number but
I know I’m going to want it
She will make you BIPOLAR
She is so insecure
I deserve your highs not
your lows.
I can’t keep blaming myself
for your fuck ups.

She has the ability to
bring you so high one
moment, CRUSH YOU, then bring
you back 15 minutes later

She’s so insecure, will GO
to most nonchalant


I craved that torture,
lapping the mat with my palm
or back or skull so I could slam
someone else against it.  The silent
satisfaction when I found that no one,
no one could turn me on my back.
The peripheral black that crept in
when dojo doors sealed in stale air
thick with sweat and heaving breaths,
when I was too close to failing weight
to join the water break.  When
I could sweat off three pounds
in two hours, when I’d spend all day
spitting into a water bottle just to drop
a measly point-one for the meet.  When
fingerprint bruises turned into fractured ribs,
and dislocated shoulders over-rotated
like Barbie doll arms.  When feet
smashed against the floor to jam “spilled toes”
back into place.  When tape was an honor,
not a weakness.  Those were the days
when I had permission to scream
and empty my lungs before
bowing into a match.

Something Spontaneous Sounding

He opened up his unnamed Evernote folder and flicked through the scraps he had collected. “One of these has to make a good tweet,” he said. Once he got to the end, he cycled back to the first one. During the fourth pass through the jotted ruins, he looked at the empty chair and sighed.

The Star System

We all smirk knowingly when a celebrity goes off to a facility because of “exhaustion.”
“Exhaustion,” we’ve come to understand, is code. It’s a euphemism for “overindulgence.”

Overindulgence, we think, is part and parcel for the famous, for those who lack self control.
Self control, of course, isn’t anything the famous are familiar with. They are paid to put on a show,

a show in which they are beautiful beyond compare, thin without effort, and this requires assistance.
Assistants: they assist, cater, take care, do the things that would otherwise fall to the celebrity.

The celebrity cannot be seen with her delicates in a Kroger’s bag outside the dry cleaner’s.
Dry cleaning is terrifying. Eating is impossible. The world presses in, the mind is a terrible thing.

Things become complicated. The assistants can’t tell her why. They’re paid to fetch, not answer.
Answers can arrive in the form of pay-as-you-go spirituality, 30-dollar red strings for protection,

protection from evil eyes, magazines predicting her downfall, all available at the grocery store,
the grocery store she doesn’t go to because no one must know what she actually consumes.

Consumed by fear when the roite bindele fails to provide, her next best option is the bottle.
The bottle answers nothing, really, but deadens the fear. But only for a little while.

For a little while, it helps. It helps, but requires increasing amounts to continue being helpful.
Helpful assistants are now tasked with procuring bottles along with the delicates. No questions.

Questions only irritate, disrupt the precise chemistry that must happen in order to function.
Functions, openings, fundraisers – she must appear, as ever, flawless. And it’s exhausting.

I remember–

(two things)

–Passing the hotel from [that cheesy chick-flick you love, secretly–see? I’m still not telling] on New Year’s Eve while the fireworks we couldn’t see–could only see echoes of color from in the English sky–burst behind buildings and we were breaking up and still, I loved you, I loved your height, I loved your laugh, I loved your yellow hair. Yet I did all the breaking. We dropped our champagne flutes on the sidewalk, a pretty pile of glass, and I lost a bejeweled shoe on the escalator.

–Being on my own: I remember Rue de Rivoli taking me home; I remember walking until I saw gold statues; I remember asking for things, waiters rolled eyes or patient smiles at my mumbling; I remember being ordinary, swept up in a rush of black and gray coats, elegant sweaters; I remember the young tan man in boat shoes, no socks, shorts, and a gutted fox around his neck; I remember buying decorative underwear, lace and little hooks, imagining your undoing them. I wore bangs and pet the dog and bought fresh, colorful fruit. I remember you weren’t there.


Everyday: Dickies; dungarees; Doc
Martens; mini-skirts; collared shirts, or suits
if you work in a fancy place; leggings;
leotards; leather and lace; aprons so
your nicer clothes stay dry; Tyvek suits that

zipper down the side; black shoes, black pants; rags
in every other color; sexy
little business number. Cherish these
mandatory norms, spotless uniforms.