We are made of everyone else.

Sep 07

[video]

Over Wine

by Wisława Szymborska

translated by Stanislaw Baranczak and Clare Cavanagh

He glanced, gave me extra charm
and I took it as my own.
Happily I gulped a star.
I let myself be invented,
modeled on my own reflection
in his eyes. I dance, dance, dance
in the stir of sudden wings.
The chair’s a chair, the wine is wine,
in a wineglass that’s the wineglass
standing there by standing there.
Only I’m imaginary,
make-believe beyond belief;
so fictitious that it hurts.
And I tell him tales about
ants that die of love beneath
a dandelion’s constellation.
I swear a white rose will sing
if you sprinkle it with wine.
I laugh and I tilt my head
cautiously, as if to check
whether the invention works.
I dance, dance inside my stunned
skin, in his arms that create me.
Eve from the rib, Venus from foam,
Minerva from Jupiter’s head-
all three were more real than me.
When he isn’t looking at me,
I try to catch my reflection
on the wall. And see the nail
where a picture used to be.

Aug 11

Self Help Link Tapes -

Help someone out with a song (song lyrics!), a photograph, gifs!, interpretative dance, lines from a poem, a short story, a novel, anything!

If you want to request for one, tell us your story through selfhelplinktapes@gmail.com.

Aug 04

the thing about poetry

is that it haunts you. like a good song, a wonderful piece of art, someone’s scent.

and this is what’s been haunting me: 

It’s good we only see each other once a week.
A young man about to move in with his fiancée
died of a sudden heart attack at twenty-six.
One hears these stories all the time.
The heart is trained to handle deprivation,
not unforeseen happiness. Just as when you
throw your arms around me I start to overflow,
but then I think of course, where was she before?
I deserve it and a lot more besides—
your love gets soaked up quickly
and I pull back brooding over something
I never had.
But don’t stop on that account, keep going.


I was brought up to make
the most of accidental brushes with kindness.
My pleasures were collected almost unawares
from stationary models, like the girl
who sat in front of me in tenth grade,
who let me stroke and braid her golden hair
and never acknowledged it.
I wouldn’t know what to do with frontal love;
would I? One snowy winter night in Montreal
I felt so great I danced a flamenco
and insisted that everyone call me Fernando.
But then I was by myself. And last night,
if there are many more nights
like last night with you —
when I think of all my nights of total happiness
I get the panicky sense that the balance
has already tipped,
and I will never again feel free
to pass myself off as a have-not.

Maybe it’s good we only see each other once a week.
But don’t stop on that account, keep going.

"It’s Good We Only See Each Other Once a Week" by Phillip Lopate, from At the End of the Day. © Marsh Hawk Press, 2010.

Because 4 years later, it still feels true. 

The heart is trained to handle deprivation,
not unforeseen happiness. Just as when you
throw your arms around me I start to overflow,

OR

I wouldn’t know what to do with frontal love;
would I?

Even if it isn’t yet. And my heart is still in training, I am just at the rim. But I do know what I would do with frontal love. 

*I found the poem through The Writer’s Almanac

Jul 26

“He is always too slow, he is always afraid, and he is always being scrutinized. In the winter, he is cold, but if he looks cold he is screamed at. There is no solitude. The constant screaming and the running, along with chronic exhaustion, produce in him a state of low-level panic, which is also a state of acute focus. It is as if his thinking mind, his doubting and critical and interpreting mind, had shut down and been replaced by a simpler mechanism that serves the body. The idea is to throw away his self and, in so doing, find out who he is. A well-trained monk, it is said, lives as though he were already dead: free from attachment, from indecision, from confusion, he moves with no barrier between his will and his act.” —

Last Call

A Buddhist monk confronts Japan’s suicide culture.

by 

BY 

Jul 23

“Watch out for intellect,
because it knows so much it knows nothing
and leaves you hanging upside down,
mouthing knowledge as your heart
falls out of your mouth.” —

Anne Sexton, The Complete Poems (via observando)

so much better than the date the funny guy, the smart guy, the traveler, the reader, the writer, the butcher, the baker, the candlestick maker. 

Jul 21

[video]

Jul 14

My human, Tessa has tagged me her Android to write a list of gratitudities

Its taken me a couple of days because my emotions short circuited that part of my brain. We’re hoping that with next upgrade, the heart is fianlly rational.

But to do as tasked:

1. There’s a moment in some songs where things change, and its quite hyperbolically, life-changing. I kid you not it’s like finding someone you love. Here are examples:

4 minutes in. then again 4:45

it’s 1:24.

it’s 2:15.

it’s 3:23

i guess it’s like when the emotional bass drops. 

2. Comedians having conversations. 

Tina Fey and Jerry Seinfeld. Just check out all the episodes. 

The Green Room with Paul Provenza

I also love his conversation with Martin Short and Jack White

3. Radio shows which aren’t really just about radio. 

i have a special place in my heart for the lin-manuel miranda musical there. 

(pahabol)

4. Reddit iAMAs

Guillermo del Toro

Tilda Swinton

and that finishes my list. 

Jul 07

Shortly before I left him, I told a counselor that my husband was hitting me and showed her the bruises. She held me while I wept in her arms. I then told a close friend that he yelled at me and called me names, but I didn’t yet tell her he was beating me.

My counselor said, “You are taking everything he says, and playing it on repeat over and over again. You have to stop the tape.”

But I couldn’t stop the tape. I heard over and over:

You are a fucking cunt. You are a fucking cunt. You are a fucking cunt. You are a fucking cunt. You are a fucking cunt. You are a fucking cunt. You are a fucking cunt.

And then his voice became my voice:

I am a fucking cunt.

” — It Will Look Like a Sunset by Kelly Sundberg from Guernica Mag. 

One is too many.

Jul 03

Bartlett is a lovely drag queen.

Sorkin still does great smackdown. 

The Period Poem by Dominique Christina

as someone who bleeds and stains everything almost shamelessly, i wish i will be to give my daughter the same power. 

(also, i miss my mom.) 

i love how this could just be—well, a headline for a very very bad day. 

i love how this could just be—well, a headline for a very very bad day. 

Jul 02

On This American Life, Dan Savage returns to the scene of the crime.

No Such Thing As A Funny Nazi