fell in love with wood, strings and fingertips

Dear Pancetta,

I purchased the first version of you in a small music shop in Cape Cod. We shared so many walks in Prospect Park where I’d hold you against my chest, which looked a lot different back then. You helped me find a slice of my voice that you harmonized to.

The second one of you was found in an even smaller shop in the west village where I had no idea I’d fall in love with a hybrid of you called banjolele. We had good times. Remember when we met that human peddling a recumbent bicycle in Washington Square Park. He listened to us softly sing together until I grew too shy to form words. He told us about his existence living in a commune in Staten Island and we almost took that ferry the following Friday to join up!

Pancetta #3, you are larger and I often bring you on stages and in bars where, even though you are underage, they still let you in. You’ve become like medicine for me, lifting my breaths to an audible moan when I am sad. You were an impulse buy, but perhaps the others before you were as well. You remind me to wake because you whisper your tunes in my ear. When I combine my fingers with your strings, I forget about all my scars.

Thank you for existing. All three of you and the others out there finding homes all over the world.

Love, Aimee.

day 13: coiled music.

dear pen pal,

I uncross my vocal chords to sing you a song about turtle shells. Did I ever tell you about the time I hunted a fence? Followed it through three cities just to see where it curved. And do you know where it stopped? Then, I tripped on a train track playing a Miles Davis song on a loop. And I forgot all the words, so I just hummed. Dance with me. Grab my dimple and make a wish. Tell me this can last. Tell me how sore you are from breathing in new york city. And then there is that infamous story of onion skin and when you got to that tiny core of spice and unlatched seventeen tears; I counted, so I can cite this number as real. Hey, you are flint. You occur from history. You arrive at my destination and I’ve been lost. How do you reach that key. That note of soprano snuck behind your tongue of alto. I can sing sometimes too. So, I stretch out my freckles like a ribbon of elipses and call out the chorus. And repeat. And repeat. Until you sing along.

day 4: visible.

As if we could scrape the color off the iris and still see.”  …Maggie Nelson, Bluets

This music is a trampoline and I am jumping my way into it.

Have you ever wondered what a body would look like out of tune?

Lightening can be like an alarm clock to the soul.

I want you to tell me what you see when you look at me.

Three hands on piano keys on a saturday before 10pm and a tongue burns from earl grey elixir.

Kind of like what I imagine Winter to be.

You can always press snooze.

Tricky. Matted. Smell. Leaflet. Groan. Hunted  ing. Blue. Draft.

what kind of artist are you.

artwork by Kate Holden
Are you thinking?
Then you are creating.
Are you breathing?
Then you are creating.
Are you waking even when your skin feels too heavy or grey to move on?
Then you are creating.
Are you filling pages with your handwriting?
Then you are a writer.
Are you painting without worry of where the lines will go?
Then you are an artist.
Are you sharing your work with others?
Then you are creating.
Are you exhaling images from your lungs?
Then you are an artist.

You don’t need to know where all this paint or ink or music is going. Just get it down. Just clutter the air with the noise of your art. Archive your mind. Share the etchings of your brainstem. Give away some words to encourage anothers’. This is all art.

change of address: a collision of music and poetics

Words and music bring us closer to people. I bring back this beautiful collaboration with magnificent Canadian from deep in the woods of watch tower, keeping the trees safe.

Marina Marina binds twine to my language like musical bungee cord bringing coasts and borders closer together. Check out Marina’s music and support incredible song writing and breath-taking voice stretching.

Download this song for FREE!!!!





there is colour here in this black-and-grey.

Call this Sunday. Order up two hundred kites shaped in sizes ranging from dragon to sperm whale. Turn up your boom box attached to hip, playing a mash-up of Charlie Parker and Tupac. Gather up your grass stains. Dig toes into flesh of earth, meaty syllables of soil. Stop worrying about what your hair looks like or if there is dirt on your face. You are meant to get messy sometimes. Write a poem on a rock, found beneath a leaf. Turn your handwriting upside down. Throw it into a puddle and if there are none nearby, make one with stored up tear drops, created by the wind. Have an impromptu picnic in your neighborhood park with local fruit purchased at nearby farmer’s market. Stain your fingertips with ink of recycled newspaper. Depending upon how bold you are, make love beneath this hunched-over sun and blanket hiding the limbs of you and your other. The ones nearby will leave you alone, too impressed by your boldness to interrupt. Remain until the air drops causing your sweat marks to shiver. Bike toward the sun’s replacement called: moon. This one is dripping lust. All around it echoes of moans. Offer up your black-and-grey lips to a rainbow. Watch the stain saturate the rest of you. Call this love’s contagion.

on closing doors & finding new ones to open to let the light in.

Turn the knob either way and find an opening toward closure. Forgiveness is a language similar to music. It is instrumental and improvisational and often moves through several octaves.

Choose an evening to walk behind the moon. Follow it like a song. Whistle it into the seams of your arms and legs. Squint away the glow until all you see is you.

When you think about an other, think about punctuation marks. Is it an exclamation mark or pause of comma or does it end?

I am safely semi-colon’ing. What I mean is, I am finding a connection between my independent parts. And here, is forgiveness. I forgive the parts that seem to be misplaced. That is, I am finding their place.

Forgive the ones that haunt. The humans and the limbs and the gender identifying markers that do not match our minds’ messages.

Forgive past loves because they showed you other things than hurt. They showed you pleasure and kindness and the flash of safety.

Forgive your body because it’s the one thing that has remained through all the traumas and wars with others and your self. Even when your body changes, it is still yours.

Forgive the memories. The gaps. The flustered darkness that does not want you to remember certain things.

Forgive time.

Forgive loneliness because one day you may be in a dark basement or elevated bridge and you will find someone who…fills you.

Forgive childhood.

Forgive this moment.

Forgive men and even some of the women.

Forgive the cracks in your skin. Also known as scars. Or crashes of age.

Forgive all the silence in you. When you’re really ready, all of your noises will emerge and create the most exquisite soundtrack you’ve ever heard. Get your batteries charged. You’ll want to listen for a long, long time.

how transmittable is this feeling

A bar of soap stuns skin into thinking it can forget.

A shower of ice from the sky that closes all the universities and office buildings and that one person who forgets to listen. Walks outside. Slips on top of a shutter of melt. Remains fallen. Finds a love letter frozen beneath it all. Waits for the water to soften. Reads it. Says, I haven’t forgotten this.

Forget chocolate today. Give her a box of bones. Or a pamphlet full of your warning signs written in poetic stanzas. A fluffy teardrop that she can cling to at night. A bouquet of teeth. A bottle of whine.

Risk something.

In cupboard, there are three dates left. Cured, like caramel. You peel away their harvest with the strength of your appetite. What you want is something bigger. What you want is something promised. With food, you never have to practice how to approach it. With humans, you tend to walk away engulfed in starvation.

Today has nothing to do with love. Today’s currency is grandiose flirtations. How big are your flowers. How expensive is that appetizer used as foreplay for later.

A holiday shouldn’t be the catalyst that reminds us to say things or do things.

In the morning of two days from now, grab her wrist and spell out your wishes in imaginary shadows. Whisper a love letter into the tattoo he got when he was too young to think about aging. Sing a song that harmonizes fear and commitment. Make a mix tape full of songs that bleed stains of lasciviousness onto her floor.






and so it begins.

Movement. When I think about what leaks from last year into this one, this is my noun. So is pausing. And remaining.

Dance. Deep inside the cacophony of bones, there is a chorus. It still clears its cellular throat. It is tuning up to see if new strings must be added or any need to be removed. It wants to call itself percussion for its yawn. This cavern is not from boredom, but from lack of breathing. I may have gone a whole lifetime not breathing correctly. Even in all my nudities, there are things I have not shown. I am searching for the flexibility to allow me to see the places on my body that have been hiding all these years.

Locate (verb) / Location (noun). Home is not necessarily a place with windows and rent payment. Let this be a year I find it within myself. All these carvings and graffiti notations. Where does the compass of my body direct me to go.

Love (noun). I know you have been alive in me since I could speak you. But perhaps all these years I have been mispronouncing your syllable. I want to be ready for you when you strike me with your toxins. I want you to be ready for me, so my vocabulary is growing. I am studying the stones of this body for you, love. I am renaming every particle of skin for you, love. I am preparing my stories so there will be no more secrets for you, love. And nothing will be left behind because moving forward means gathering up all the leaves that have left us, flattening them for preservation, putting them away to make room for new birth. 

And so it begins.

false memories.

I have been dreaming. There is a camel bent into a mathematical quandary. It carries Latin in its hump, hungry for the lost languages bartered away. In this one, I am woman and when I drip sun from between thighs, I learn of pregnancy. I have been warned. There is a hanger made from desert sand and railroads which gut me. Here in this part of brain stem, blood gasps into clouds of self-cleaning exhales. I am getting married to a midnight roofwalker. On our first date, she eats the revolution out of peaches and spits them into nearby satellites. Without words, this music becomes a biblical rant of slayed tongues. These are all facts and they have been documented into stained-glass soliloquies lies. How far along is this education. How tender is this snowstorm which buries several men and preserves the sick they have yet to learn in their bodies. There is a cracked spine, deliberately severed in order to use the bones for ores. When all that snow melts, someone will need to lead us out from the cold and drown. I meet a woman dressed in passport and what I thought was lipstick now calls itself Syrah. She gathers up everything that falls from me and we head into a cloud shaped as instruments. Her kiss erases every scar from beneath my body. And then knuckles rap against front door and I am told that there has been a mistake. With fingers stretching miles, this human unzips me out from all the skin keeping me in and transports me into another torso. This is where you were meant to live, they speak. The blood is still warm and my limbs appear in tact. But the cells are harder here and though there is blood, I do not bleed as frequently. And yes, I still have hair, but it covers me more. And here in this body, I am called elsewhere. How much of this is believed; how much of this is drunk. How many books must be read in order to understand the symbolism of announcements. Are you a doctor of your skeletons, yet.