Day 19: connect

Reunion with your past.

Complete the sentence of a memory, but do not add on. This is defined as closure.

Romanticizing ex-lovers only elongates the haunt. Connect with what still lingers and then find your way through and back into the present.

Your past is a stomping ground. That dive bar you used to frequent with the best fries and local beer. You always forget about the time that man grabbed you or how about the time you got sick from that burger you ate from there. Your memory leaves out the details of what went wrong. When it comes to your past’s memories, do not overstay your welcome.

Reconnect, but only to create a punctuation mark to an affair. Do not linger. It is not only disrespectful to the present, but your future.

If you must, choose a date circled in your calendar from several years earlier when you spent sixteen hours alone, covered in soil and fumes of campfire. Remember the howl of mayflies and panoramic slideshow of constellations at night. Remember you read poetry to the hidden wildlife. You roasted marshmallows and fell asleep to the whistling wind.

There are bits of past that deserve a rerun; these are the moments that you can bring into your present and stitch into your future. These are the moments that do not plague you. Instead, they become a reminder of all that you are capable of being.

alligator wine.

clouds drip away from the sun/ crowd of branches like/ skinny shivers of/ summer’s left behind.
One does not need to travel six hours to arrive at an end, but there is something about this clean air that allows room to gasp away these ghosts in my luggage.

On a Saturday night, a human with hair hungry like mine, screams out the intoxicated wails of alligators, drunk on the lust of wine.

I sing about home, harmonizing with the experimental strums of ukeleles and guitar chords.

There is so much beauty in being alone. And this does not need to be about loneliness. In fact, I am surrounded by an audience of stimulants. That grass darting out from beneath layers of snow like green, spiky freckles. That sexy hippie at food co-op. The flavor of this farmer’s market feast. This laughter, contagious and marvelous. An unzipped secret from front pocket because the space is safe now and so are the ones beside me.

On a Monday, I gather inside a room full of queers and activists. I share a story from my past, no longer present but still a part of me. Suddenly, there is a dialogue. Embrace of collarbones and tears. This is why we speak. This is why we create. This is why we travel.


“I am here to tell you that someone was” *

* Joan Didion

In my previous life, I was a child with blond curls, sequestered into various circular shapes. And in this previous life, I ate far more sugar and less vegetables and there were crushes on boys that never led to kissing only gift giving or phone call slurring. I thought I’d grow up to be a dancer or veterinarian. I was pretty sure I’d be dead before the regrets settled in. It’s difficult sometimes not to think about what once was. OR what I could have been what could I have been.

There are these tattoos that tell me stories when I’m lonely and need to remember something. Most of them arrived on my body during a time of need. Maybe I needed some ink to tell me something that my own thoughts could not. In this moment I am in need of some dirt on my ankles. Or a mosquito bite to remind me of the inhabitants we stole this earth from. Even though they bite and itch, it was often during moments of lust when I found new marks to scratch at. In this moment my limbs long to hurdle over a politically incorrect body. I want to force my fingerprints into my window to locate another way to stain glass.

This world is made up of was‘s. Humans who are marked and maimed by the past tense and how to move on and how to move on and how to move.

In my previous life, I yearned for a swingset or a tree house and a tent or a brother. But in this moment I have none of these. And how to move on and how to move on and how to move.

violent receptacle of speech


I’m not the _________________________ you think I am.

Does this hairstyle make me look fat does this fat make me look fat?

I’m ruined.

The past is too present in my future.

Don’t touch me where I’m not perfect (don’t touch me).

I deserved it.

The scars are a reminder of who I was am.

Whose experience is this?

If you judge me because of my past then you need to judge my present.

How can I be a feminist and still hate myself?

How can I be an atheist and still believe in something?

If you want to love me, turn off the lights and turn my volume down.

Cough out memory and press chalk around discharge to warn others of the imprinted trauma.

Ever regret an animal? Ever regret eating an animal? Ever regret being treated like an animal?

I fall in love with shadows because they don’t talk back.

I am ready to cut again.

I have a fetish for language and food.

When you called me a bitch, I wanted to bite my fingernail off and use it as a disposable knife to cut your ignorance out.

I am afraid of men.

I am afraid of white men.

I am afraid of middle aged white men.

I can tell you aren’t listening.

Screams are not enough to save the dying.

I thought I deserved that disease.

I want to know who I caught it from.

I think I know who I caught it from.

My body is a stain too resilient for bleach.

I think I’ll just follow my shadow home and see where it leads me.

how to neglect a memory

Something has happened…

When you spend too much money on your credit card, there is a block on future spending. It is a punishment for lack of control; for purchasing that expensive pair of shoes far out of reach of your economic class; for thinking you could buy a new computer when you couldn’t even afford a printer.

My memories are like this credit card im/balance.

There is a block. But instead of a barrier against the ability to produce new memories, there is a pause against the old ones.

I cannot remember.

She asks me to write about my earliest memories, so I think about breakfast today:

Homemade granola with toasted coconut and sunflower seeds and almonds crushed beyond recognition and oats and soy milk and my appetite moving too quickly to savor each bite. And coffee.

Further back?

I remember falling up the stairs at the Franklin Ave. subway station and my fear of Brooklyn’s disease on my palms.


There was that man last summer who…too many pints…a walk home…non-threatening?… STOP.

Keep going, you coax. Further still.

Oh, that canoe trip in western waters of B.C., Canada. Creating a living room out of driftwood. Washing my underwear in the salty water and pacing around nude over fallen tree trunks. The beauty of turquoise-squeezed sky. Mosquito-ravaged skin. Making love in a tent too small to show off in.

Push back.

I remember my mother getting sick that last time. Shipping her sorry body to Brooklyn to make visiting hours easier for us. Visiting her in between full-time job everyone knew about and the one I kept hidden. Hearing her complain about their lack of toasters and what else is there to eat for breakfast beside charred bread? There was that woman there. And I started to feel like my visits were for her, rather than my mother. And I just wanted to push pills made of poems into this young one’s mouth and save her from the prison bars inside her bones.

What is left to remember? Why am I forcing this push…

Look at a photograph of yourself from at least 5 years ago or maybe ten or go back before the braces came off.

How can I look forward…how can I remain present…and still look through those notebooks stained with mildew reminding me why I am like this.

I just want to talk about breakfast. I just want to make you supper. Let’s just talk about your childhood, since something in my body won’t let me talk about mine.