Friday, September 12, 2014

to not add a last line

god fugitive: a bosom friend outfit.  no, not that kind of bosom.

i'm on the downswing after the debut of god fugitive: a bosom friend.  

accomplished nothing yesterday.

today i hope to work on my essay on O, for dialogue's pink issue.  i hope it works out.

i also need to work on a stupid little thing called laundry, teach my online class, and get together an email list to invite people to my reading next friday.

spend some quality time with my children, who have been neglected for the past week.

figure out something fun to do for date night.

last night i did readings for a 9/11 memorial recital.  i feel weird about 9/11 memorial stuff that happens outside of nyc.  the recitalist chose the readings, but asked me to add one to it, so i did.  and that was tough, too.  i was trying to avoid anything that would have weird connotations in the context of the music and video feed that went with the readings.  

turns out everything has weird connotations in that context.  but, score one for poetry!  the recitalist told me that when she sent in the texts to the people making the programs, the whole office stopped to read this poem. 

so haters who hate poetry, take that, and read this.

They jumped from the burning floors—
one, two, a few more,
higher, lower.

The photograph halted them in life,
and now keeps them   
above the earth toward the earth.

Each is still complete,
with a particular face
and blood well hidden.

There’s enough time
for hair to come loose,
for keys and coins
to fall from pockets.

They’re still within the air’s reach,
within the compass of places
that have just now opened.

I can do only two things for them—
describe this flight
and not add a last line.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

mellow'd my harsh

anne hutchinson.  foremother.
rough day yesterday.  luckily some cool collaborators helped me mellow my harsh when i had a little melt-down during moby dick puppet opera rehearsal.  i remember now why doing guerilla experimental opera is for the young.

queequeg and ishmael are married.  photo from hannah johnson, aka the coloratura.

tonight, the deseret experimental opera collective (DEXO) is performing part two of the god fugitive, "a bosom friend", my moby dick puppet opera.  

late night rehearsal last night, up early to get kids to school, took a morning nap.

not super productive today except:

1) break-through on essay for this journal that i've been trying to figure out for weeks.

2) reading about anne hutchinson via susan howe.

3) off to practice and get some last minute stuff ready for avant-garawge tonight.  have to come up with an outfit!


CHARGES AGAINST HUTCHINSON:  "the Flewentess of her Tonge and her Willingness to open herselfe and to divulge her opinions and to sowe her seed in us that are but highway side and Strayngers to her"

a bit like kate kelly, right?

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Tuesday: library clothes at the library

Don't tell me I can't wear my Judas Priest belt to the library.
If I hadn't been doing this blog with Lara, there is no way I would have opened a Google doc at the reference desk, between being asked by students how to find their text books tonight, and started a story based on something silly I did in Salt Lake City in 1990. 

Already, this blog is motivating--even at my most frenzied and exhausted.

Self-portrait above from my bike about to take off for my second work gig of my Tuesday. 

Reading Kate Atkinson's Like Life, a narrative that keeps restarting like this day.


it's cold and rainy so i can bring back my tweed dress.  i know my head is obscured.  i like it that way.

today read susan howe again.

slowly devouring her.

i now feel sufficiently prepared to begin a ph.d program.

made dinner already, because i had food that needed cooking.

no writing as of yet.

taught online courses, comforting and encouraging students about their topic choices.  one wants to write about the tiny house movement!  hurray, because that means i don't have to read about video games and violence, how evil the federal government is, or the nfl.

sidebar:  i mentioned to my tiny house betopic'd student that no one seems to be examining this so-called tiny house movement. don't most people in the world already live in tiny spaces?  i totally get the desire to keep things simple, believe me, but i just find the whole thing weird--mostly white, middle-class people fantasizing about living in darling little trailers and such.

okay.  i don't know if i'll get to write anything new today on account of the number of pieces of new music i have to woodshed between now and kid time and rehearsal time.  today felt like a battle in my head:  if i don't cook dinner, the food in my fridge will go to waste and we'll have to scrounge for dinner (we've been doing that a lot lately).  if i do cook dinner, i'll have to choose between writing and practicing.  if i don't practice i'll be humiliated tomorrow night.  if i do practice, i'll be putting my writing at lower status than everything else i do today.  if i don't make dinner, i'm a bad mother and citizen.

suddenly the entire world of possibilities is in flux.  is there any there there? etc., etc., etc.

oh, shoot.  that sounds really whiny and privileged.  i guess it is.

so i'll leave just leave you with these equally overwhelming notions from howe:

"the margin submerges phonic substance.  a mother's thread or line is ringed with silence so poems are"


susan howe/jakobson:

"why do certain works go on saying something else? . . . . jakobson says: 'one of the essential differences between spoken and written language can be seen clearly.  the former has a purely temporal character, while the latter connects time and space. while the sounds that we hear disappear, when we read we usually have immobile letters before us and the time of the written flow of words is reversible.'"


"a poem can prevent onrushing light going out."

Monday, September 8, 2014

Monday: Pantera Shirt in Cafe Ost

I had no idea that hours from this moment, random Pantera fans would  throw me the devil horns
from their car waiting for a light on the Bowery. Very rejuvenating!
I don't why I have this expression.

Me, breaking, in Cafe Ost.

Writing is slippery. I can't think about what I'm doing too much. I can barely blog about it.

I ingested an Americano AND an iced coffee. Super decadent writing day.

Also, I recorded in my notebook the names of lit mags that had been encouraging in the past.

I ended this session by reading a few of Frank O'Hara's Lunch Poems, some of them written in the neighborhood where I wrote today, where I always write.

I'm not writing about New York, though. I never write about New York.


today i'm wearing a nightgown. still. at 1.59 p.m.  friday i wore my two favorite colors (as ingrid says):  leopard and red.

i hear it's flooding in arizona, where my family lives, and where i grew up.

it's also flooding up in provo, utah, where i have more projects on my plate than i can handle this week.

& i will handle them, although.

friday got crazy.  i read and wrote a lot, but had no time to report in:  finished olson's call me ishmael, a worthy, worthy read, and read some other stuff.  lots of psalms.  both kjv and robert alter translations.

most notably, i finished the second installment in the god fugitive, my moby dick puppet opera that everyone seems to think is just a gimmick BUT IT'S SUPER NOT--it's my current spiritual home.

gave the libretto to christian on saturday morning at 11.30 am.  he spent the day and night composing, and stayed up most of last night writing.  we rehearse this afternoon, perform on wednesday night at the avant garawge.

sunday i sang with the raddest musicians i know.  a dream team of people who love creative music and early music just as much as i do.  we sang machaut, hildegard, and asplund.  all thrilling.  it's seriously celestial.  splendid gems in those manuscripts.  and my soul feels like it's back in my body now that i'm doing music again on a more regular basis.

one of the things that struck me hard during the reading phase of my doctoral program was how inseparable musical and poetic practices are for me.  and the question of how they became so opposed to each other is one i haven't really answered, but wish to explore for a long time yet to come.

today i'm writing in my nightgown, still.  just finished my lunch of cheese & tomato sandwich and diet coke.  no more pecan sandies with dark chocolate chips.  i'm trying to wean myself from those, so i made do with a spoonful of nutella for dessert.

began susan howe's the birth-mark, recommended to me by this fine poet, and i'm gobbling it up.  i wrote a stupid poem based on "the candles" chapter of moby dick (i may have already told you that christian's mom, aka bammy, the funniest woman i know, calls it "mobile dick," right?).  i was quite taken with the image of the crew of the pequod frozen during a scary typhoon in which the ship is struck by lightening "in enchanted attitudes" like the skeletons of pompeii--in mid-stride, or jump, or run, or walk.

also, this from my shero susan howe:

"emily dickinson's writing is my strength and shelter.  i have trespassed into the disciplines of american studies and textual criticism through my need to fathom what wildness and absolute freedom is the nature of expresssion. . . . poetry unsettles our scrawled defences; unapprehensible but dear nevertheless."


Friday, September 5, 2014

Pen and Paper

Short work day meant I could get some writing done. I was floored, however, to discover that Think Coffee on the Bowery has no wifi. I just needed a little to open Gmail do I could get on a Google doc, with which one can work offline. But no.

Luckily, I had a pen and notebook in my bag. Hurrah for pens and notebooks.

I worked on new fiction--a new short story. Not inspired by the Kate Atkinson novel I'm reading.

Later, I worked on old fiction--the novella. If it's any good, I don't know about it.
Where I wrote--indecipherably

Dirty hair alley selfie on the way to some sad novella writing