Monday, September 30, 2013

Oscar Wao

"He wrote that Ybon had little hairs coming up to almost her bellybutton and that she crossed her eyes when he entered her but what really got him was not the bam-bam-bam of sex ---it was the little intimacies that he'd never in his whole life anticipated, like combing her hair or getting her underwear off a line or watching her walk naked to the bathroom or the way she would suddenly sit on his lap and put her face into his neck. The intimacies like listening to her tell him about being a little girl..."

-Junot Diaz

Friday, September 27, 2013


My mother and I stood on top of Topanga watching the little bats scurry about the remnants of twilight. She was getting her home ready for her lover to arrive and I was driving back to Venice. We bought books today Lu and I. She read me a story from the Brentwood Country Mart to the Hippy Canyon and it was a simple story about a man who makes bets for people's fingers and she read it wonderfully. Vin Scully is a voice I will one day miss, radio, Dodgers scored three runs in the top of the first before I switched stations, tired. My head is throbbing. A glass of whole iced milk. At my cafe, I ordered pasta with chicken. I am waiting for it, no sugar in the sauce, my friend behind the counter checked. Turns out she had been in a smelly yoga class yesterday, as had I. Before arriving here, my dad and I spoke on the phone while I drove down PCH, and he sounded fatigued, but he'd also put together a dresser today. I told him that the last time Trav and I tried to assemble a piece of Ikea furniture, we looked like the monkeys in 2001 Space Odyssey. And he laughed. And my food is ready.

Saturday, September 21, 2013


Have you ever driven down the 105 Fwy East from LAX under the tunnel and along the way? It's an ugly journey, to the right are a bunch of military industrial complex buildings and depots and corporate drudgery fronts, but still I've somehow become fascinated by the distant view of the sky and the particular angle of the roadway and sometimes I'll take it to the 110 and then the 10 and arrive downtown. I have been scouring this city for years upon years. Turned over rocks. This city is infinite. This city is endless, one of hidden abundance, but there are certainly permutations. The film Beginners, the gay parent, failed romances, cancer, life emulating art or vice versa, it's powerful to feel a little bit or a lot understood. Even if it's unnerving and sad and beautiful. And stylized. Life is not styled in such a way. Life is not linear. Life is absolutely stunning in the beauty it contains and stark in how much savagery it amounts. I knock on wood. The wicker of my nightstand. I knock on wood obsessively. I wanna talk about the real people. All the real people who have somehow managed to populate my worldview with remarkable elements and passion and care and surprising talent and understanding. Characters are for movies and we pronounce them and they help illuminate the indistinguishable mass of continuous life and they are important in their own way. But the people. They aren't with me in the flesh at the moment, but the people are what we're here for and I know that we are an equation that's involved deeply in answering ourselves.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

the hills behind left field of dodger stadium

Chapter One

My day begins between Maria's legs. I imagined this room. It's dark, while the air remains a hint of cool, we are a furnace. The bed would be on the floor. She is the source. Her moans are rhythmic reminders of life, that we are alive, rhythm, we have this gentle clawing rhythm. Her hair is black, spreads itself out like a moonlit cave atop a rocky outcropping of ragged pillows. Trying not to disturb the other occupants of the house, I cover her mouth with my hand, then use my lips. What's being made, it leaps and dashes across space color. The door is closed. I rise up to view her through blurry eyes. This must have happened. Her breath is spiraling along my ear, down my throat, impressing my active lungs, expanding what's known by inspiring shapes of unknown. This is a place only two people can visit together. How could I be making this up? This is all a dream. But I tangle our legs, and wrap her slender torso into my uncompromising arms written forever, and really forever, even with the world in disagreement about forever. It's saying no to forever. I'm still writing on top of the red marker. I can hear laughter, and the savage rush of morning, loud, street noise calling intolerably, surrounding this dark room. The whistling of a passing train yells through town and brings the volume to a final cry. I am still here with her. We are breathing relieved and deeply in unison. I am kissing her like it's the first. Stop checking your cell phone. I am communicating with her heart in a language we are inventing. It is green stone, this table, with wood-lining. I am far away in another place wondering about the existence of these moments. I almost smell her, or maybe want to so bad that it happens. 

be back tonight?

yes. with moon.

mmm. good. you two have fun.
...we will.

I am flung away. When it's this warm, everything threatens to melt, begins, even. And there is also the silence, don't believe the hubbub of noise, we live within the gaps of silence.

I stumble out of my woman's blue dark loving room and into the circumstances of living. Chorizo and corn tortillas, sweat and change, thick inside this crowded bungalow of a house. I am not really here. I was never invented.  While somewhere distant, a helicopter churns blue butter in the sky. Inside, scattered about, are remnants of the people who belong to this home; aunt and uncle, cousins, abuela, good old-fashioned Mexican people gone already to work or still asleep. There is scattered lint, clothing, shoes, articles of evidence left recently behind. They belong to people, thank God for people, because for no understandable reason they've taken care of me like I'm one of their own. Even if I am not, even if I I am no one, someone, everyone. I am sitting in my father's house. At his table. The green one I mentioned. We are going to the doctor today. I don't know which version of reality to entertain.

her blood-heavy lips impart one final smack of immortality on my lactic corpse and then I break away, rise and sway to the humbling mechanisms of bipedal locomotion in the twenty-first century. I am disappearing from her fast. I am being sucked out of the door, holding on by its frame, gaining one track to and away from her eyes. 

 be back tonight?

yes. with moon.

mmm. good. you two have fun.
...we will.

Monday, September 9, 2013

ginger & whiskey

most geniuses give up, the rest of us and a few brave brilliant go ahead and keep exploring the human maze. the venice canals are blue at night. the back of my ears are still covered in sand. the tide charged to shore then pulled away from my feet with suction almost disappearing into wherever. it returned over my ankles, white silt spread across the water and we threw in our bread. i chucked mine left-handed quick to rid myself of reluctance. you had your own mysteries.

then we splayed along disintegrating continent.

i wonder if the ocean finds people to be a tease, just out of reach. life, on the other hand, with hands on bodies, sensual, seductive, clasping, intent to suffocate, and then it won't let go. so to find our own element, we let go, held hands, let go, spoke, listened, atop a bed of shredded stones left soft and infinite. i kept thinking about how beautiful this all damn was and my father. my mother the blue pacific, my father the earth. and i drank the entire flask of bulleit whiskey this time, i did it myself, without my walkstreet compadre and she drank homemade lemonade with ginger and i remember that moment walking weeks before with jeff, how we knew my guy at the liquor store was right wasn't he? that tasty brew being worth the extra dollar. we were in the alley and jeff and i had that moment realizing that it was good whiskey. and a few days ago this black kid got into my car, shaken and wavy, claiming that he had the same condition as my father but i had told him first so wasn't sure if i believed him because he had been in my car once before and that time he had offered me up a map of a fantasy world complete with eight-foot tall invisible soldiers and fragmented landscapes. and this time we bought burger king from the drive-thru on la brea/sunset and he told me i could keep all of his ideas since he wouldn't be needing them anymore. and i wasn't sure if he was lying about his own imminent demise but i laughed a bit too hard and started hiding my tears and for instance, him and a yemeni girl had been together since middle school and shared an email account and both wrote in it, saving their love letters under drafts, because her dad was in the cia and she belonged to a different man in marriage and so then they both met up years later in a motel room and i dropped him off near apple pan and when we both shook hands we held them together in a way that felt like truth and he must have been telling me the truth and even if he was lying then it was its own form of god given truth because the moment absolutely required every ounce of attention in the air and atmosphere. and i hope that the kid goes on living and that everyone can keep their hearts and lungs and vital organs oxygenated and breathing and we must have stronger hands and arms and legs and minds and invisible superpowers than a few stupid user generated web forums would ever have us believe because its already a plain damn miracle that we're already here, that much is clear, and so i'm going to be like a fucking cartoon character or a spoonfed disney automaton and believe in miracles because they are everywhere. and then that night i walked you home.

Monday, September 2, 2013

sov sött

my novel will be available in the upcoming days. alone in the car my father and i bought, discovering that people have noises living inside, awful noises that leave our lungs and guts when the desperation to scratch eternity becomes necessary. my cheekbones rosy and raw when i awoke and stared in the mirror. my beard is my father. my smile is my father. i will honor living.

one of my favorite apartment sounds is hearing trav and hannah making fun of each other outside my door. today, talia and i talked about laughter, we've always laughed, we did even on the phone, and it's my dad who gave me this ability. and she, dust covered, voice in thick soothing waves from a few naked days in the wild desert, she, the only one i could call. the day is alive, honor the day.

i brought up my novel because it's comforting, self-absorption, right now. and it's more than that, i know, i've never known it more certainly than i do now, the creation, the impulse and the act, essential, vital, blood important.

first there is love then there is light, you told me. those birds were on the shore beautiful chaos, pelicans. that video you made of los angeles. the hill where you broke your arm. magic in a bedroom, on a pier, playground up ocean park in the dark. scorched hills, a large rock, creaky windmill, small green plant dots covering the surface of a shallow waterfall pool, your hand drawing a line through.

i was saying the other day, how each day feels like a lifetime. each day is its own life. have a safe flight. each day its own life. first there is love then there is light.

then we can all rest, go to sleep, sweet.