Saturday, December 20, 2008


"I say nothing to no one. Nothing about what goes through my life, the anger, the wild movements of my body towards that dark, hidden word “pleasure.” I am modesty, I am silence itself. I say nothing. I express nothing. About what is important, nothing. It is there, unnamed, untouched.”

--Margurite Duras, undated journal

Monday, December 8, 2008


this afternoon i read this lester bangs piece about beefheart. there's a lot of deep shit in it, then, there's this:

My second encounter with Beefheart took place in late 1972 - he played Detroit, opening for The Kinks. It was an odd bill in the first place, and things weren't helped any when Ray Davies spiced up his campy patter by dedicating a song 'to Captain Beefheart - one of the best platers in the business'. 'What the hell does that mean?', growled Beefheart when I told him backstage. 'It's British slang,' I explained, 'it means you give blowjobs.'

For the rest of the night I had to listen to him intermittently rant about how he was going to murder Davies. It had been a warm re-union when I first entered the dressing room, although the concert itself was peculiar even by the Captain's standards, not so much for the content of his act as for the atmosphere in the room at the time. The crowd - probably 80 to 90% Kinks fans and / or aspiring glitterites - simply didn't know what to make of this strange Wolfman Jack type character shrouded in a cape which I thought really corny ('Yeah, I wore it to hide the fact that I had gotten fat,' he admitted to me recently). He was snarling and growling into the microphone while a bunch of guys dressed and made up like utter geeks played this incomprehensible, backwards, Chinese music.


you can read the whole thing here.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008


i wait to be asked. neglect all tasks unless addressed specifically to me. say my name, yes. otherwise, watch things pile up: a spilled ashtray swept up with a sock then tossed beneath the bed, a cup encrusted with milk, beer, a banana peel. in every direction, a distraction. a drop in temperature, i stay in bed all day. encumbered by library books with pages sticky or smudged. i readjust the pillow behind my neck, lean back against the headboard. the cat walks into the room and mews.
when i try to read my old journals the writing's illegible; i must spend two hours tracing and retracing a version of myself as presented in a paragraph with one useable sentence. the demands of daily upkeep puzzle me. my hair’s already dirty though its only been 36 hrs since my last shower.

Sunday, November 16, 2008


no sound in the house. a silence maintained by force: shut door, cat curled in the closet, fifteen unplugged appliances. a silence interrupted only by the most basic of daily noises: neighbor coughing, mouse scratching, trapped behind the bedroom wall. the heater clicks on, releases three puffs of steam. seventy-five, eighty degrees. when i sweat, it makes no sound which is the same as when i breathe. face pressed against a window pane. looking out, not in. the wind picks up, streams in through the insulation. a whistling, high pitched. i hear nothing. the difference between silence and quiet is a matter of appearance, personal demeanor. when someone knocks at the door, i do not jump up, run down the hall: hand paused on the door handle who's there? nor do i feel any sort of thrill when the phone rings. a call from the pharmacy, most likely; perhaps my sister's wet vowels, into the reciver:
today the baby.... no, i don't have to speak unless i choose. i can sit here all afternoon, brushing my hair, smoothing out the wrinkles in my skirt with my bare hands.

Friday, October 31, 2008

Wednesday, September 24, 2008


also, two weeks with little to no sleep. although i lack hard evidence, i blame mccain. home from work at five, i undress, grab a beer from the fridge & watch exactly 50 minutes of news tv then fume all evening. not even a cigarette after months of no cigarettes can calm me. i leave nasty notes on every suv i see with a mccain sticker plastered to the bumper. it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God. three days ago a friend from highschool messaged me on facebook wow you’ve changed! the last time i talked to him he was entering his first year of seminary & informed me over fajitas at el azteca that he was voting for bush in the re-election. sorry liz but i just can’t vote for a candidate that supports abortion. what’s worse is he supports mccain! god, palin’s a babe. in my insomnia rage, i emailed him at three am this morning: wow! you haven’t changed at all then proceeded to list, in about fifteen bullet points, exactly how i felt about him & his "moral covictions." in addition i have unplugged the tv & banned myself from reading anymore on-line articles that begin racial bias might play a bigger role than expected.

Friday, September 5, 2008


the entire left wall of the living room is glass, pushed back by a mammoth spanish oak. open the window: manic green floods the carpet, flypapers the walls, which are still bare, save the green, the stuff of summer in decline. tell me, please, if there is a way to revert back to rage; degrade this silence into such a state of incoherency, violence is possible. true violence can only occur in broad daylight. i want to be watched. if after twilight—is only terror, the basest form, all reverberation. i seek the purity of present-tense. and fail. the formality of my silence, of “healing”—smoothing my skirt as i sit; the sun, skin light with it. mom calls:
in january, the rose bowl. do you know where they keep the floats? my sister: i tried sixteen different wedding dresses; they all made me look fat. the formality, even, of despair. i sweat without producing a scent or any identifiable moisture. i wait every day for the sun to reach high noon: a drunk and stumbling yellow, at the height of its virility, bleaches out the leaves, chapped concrete, light itself.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

all the windows shut & still some stray wind shaking. shaking, i shiver awake. one a.m. wincing dog, go back to bed. i’m too tired to take a walk, & besides, this wind. a storm traveling due east. the hwy located two spits from my front step empties. at the front door the dog scratches the carpet, holds his leash between his teeth. i, myself, am too winded to wail. instead i wait.

magic sam





Saturday, July 12, 2008

Don't Worry Spiders
Kobayashi Issa

Don't worry, spiders,
I keep house
casually.



Friday, June 20, 2008


every time i read anti-smoking comments on ohnotheydidnt i get pissed. listen: smoking involves a lot more than nicotine. i realize some people get physically addicted, but ummm, smoking is also emotional.

never once has liz suffered a nic fit, twitch omg i need a cigarette! i just loved to smoke. a pack or two a day. smoking was my hobby. hey elizabeth what are your weekend plans? oh, yknow, a carton. i recently quit smoking & it wasn’t v. difficult. i just stopped, without warning or premeditation. i do miss it.

i miss the smell of it. the taste of it. i miss riding in the car listening to astral weeks or white like white heat. cigarettes help you make friends: outside the bar, on campus, waiting for the bus or on break at work. they give you something do instead of staring at the wall all afternoon. they help you lose weight. they taste great with anything from old chub to miller lite. a boy’s mouth. the post-coital cigarette. smoking in bed. indoors is best. you don’t even have to leave the apartment for days if you have cigarettes.

this is what makes quiting hard. not nicotine. not the ever-touted “buzz”, fear of cancer or hacking coughs. cigarette love, cigarette life.


Friday, June 6, 2008

"Give me your hand:
Now I’m going to tell you how I went into that inexpressiveness that was always my blind, secret quest. How I went into what exists between the number one and the number two, how I saw the mysterious, fiery line, how it is a surreptitious line. Between two musical notes there exists another note, between two facts there exists another fact, between two grains of sand, no matter how close together they are, there exists an interval of space, there exists a sensing between sensing—in the interstices of primordial matter there is the mysterious, fiery line that is the world’s breathing, and the world’s continual breathing is what we hear and call silence. "

--Clarice Lispector
(from The Passion According to G. H.)

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

night


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bars, bars, bars

Friday, May 23, 2008


before dawn i braid my hair. two long tails that swing as i move living room, hall, kitchen. oatmeal for breakfast, cigarette in the car. six cups of constant comment: i clock-in, no twitch of exhaustion. exhaustion: two am, up reading biographies of society women. she spent half her life in front of a mirror. i’ll spend mine typing. a steady rhythm: tim woodman's whimsical garden art is designed for indoor or outdoor use. i barely see what’s written. my desk shoved against the window, blinds opened a finger’s width. no, i’ll spend half my day staring. around noon a coworker interrupts want to sign linda’s card? sure though i can’t place name or face. best birthday wishes xo elizabeth. in the break room, a party. strawberry cake, black streamers, banner over the hill r.i.p. i sing softly. wait for the appropriate moment to leave, return to my desk. the typing begins again. a steady rhythm.


Saturday, April 19, 2008


suddenly sun, a break in wind. i can stand on the sidewalk in thin sweater, light a cigarette first try. spring: i almost failed to notice you save the shortened workday. eight hours, six, four. mimosas on the front porch, m’s quick kiss in the kitchen; i loose my footing. outside, even the daisies make my skin look pale. beneath an oak tree, i spread a tattered blanket, spread my skirt perfect O. here kitty kitty. the cat passes without acknowledging my presence. such a browned afternoon; already darkness coming at its edges. 6 p.m.: a scotch to bring in the sunset. a couch, feet propped, t.v. off. i open the blinds. the fucking heat lightening. m. smells my hair when i sit down. how easily i’ve slipped into this domestica. a kiss, prepared dish. i wink when i leave for work in the morning & wait, wait all day till i can come home again.

Thursday, March 27, 2008


Interviewer: Are you a religious person even if only from a distance?
Christa Wolf: No, if you mean a church religion.
Interviewer: Never tried to be, not even in times of crisis?
Christa Wolf: Oh yes, one tries.

(from: interview in 2005)

Wednesday, March 26, 2008


on a bright day i sweep all obligations away. first, the responsibility of our bodies. m. wakes early. the heater puffs great gusts of steam, though, its nearly seventy out. sweat; my hand, beneath the sheets, our heat, a surprise. second, i burn breakfast. unpenetratable smoke. open the window & outside, children from the community center clap, sing hymns in hebrew
Toda al’ kol’ ma shebarata Toda al’ ma sheli natata. third, off from work. i print to-do lists, cross nothing off. can’t bear the laundry mat, bank tellers in subdued colors will that be all, miss hall?these small indulgences. all afternoon, the couch & sun. at dusk, fuck it. let’s go walk. the dirt along the riverbank is wet. the grass glistens. from our dry spot, i roll a cigarette using lispector’s stream of life as my flat surface. to count time is merely a hypothesis. i hear her brushing her hair as i read this, hear her do all sorts of daily activities i can’t quite imagine beyond the text. it will never begin & it will never end. on a bright day watch as i sweep everything away.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008


I Saw a Man Pursuing the Horizon
Stephen Crane

I saw a man pursuing the horizon;
Round and round they sped.
I was disturbed at this;
I accosted the man.
"It is futile," I said,
"You can never - "

"You lie," he cried,
And ran on.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

you realize she’s so made that it’s as if at any moment, at her own whim, her body could cease to live, could just thin out around her and disappear from sight, and that it’s in this threat that she sleeps, exposes herself to your view.

--m. duras