Tag Archives: water

i want to be friends but i’ve touched your boobs (and other things): a (prose) poem on how to be aggressively platonic

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i) in spite of your perfect hair and the shy dimple under your left cheek i wonder if i should have put my arm around you that night because when i think of you i only want to see the way your mouth goes bright as you tell me the names of the fish skipping across the water and the way your fingers make knots in rope so easy like every simple piece of string could coil into complexity but then i remember your bright mouth on mine and the ocean roaring inside me and how you knotted our fingers together so tight so close so we wouldn’t drift apart

ii) my stride is small my voice is smaller would you hear me if i shouted across the fields over the mountains through bamboo forests clicking in the wind would you see me running with thread and needle trying to stitch our islands together

iii) these things take time i tell myself i need space you say when i breathe my lungs inflate with salt and sky there is endless seaglass inside me rolled smooth but sometimes i must dive to cold depths to see even a glimmer of a sunken star i am breaking my hands on time and space and maybe this was a mistake

iv) the thread is red i see it out the corner of my eyes but when i look too hard it vanishes and it isn’t joy i feel but i tell myself it will be

v) most people grew vocabularies for this much younger than i, learned to put out fires, learned the language of storms, learned to suture open wounds tenderly as not to leave scars and now i flounder in the shallows, water kissing the backs of my knees but drowning would be simpler than this oh drowning would be simpler

vi) so i drown. i let the you the me the us the shallow the deep the wave after wave after waving you away at the station that one afternoon drown me. i drown in remembering limbs and fingers and hands and eyes and how you said what you did in tongues i did not know tongues i got to know tongues i have come to miss and down, deep down, i start to forget.

vii) i breathe again, coming up to the surface, knots in my hair – no matter, they’ll be gone with the next haircut, drastic measures for drastic issues – and look around. the sky is gone, fallen into the ground somewhere somewhen, as i looked for you through the sheen the surf the direction of the current swirling around my thighs my knees my ankles as I step out, slowly, back to land back to safety back to me. but i look back, just once just one more time, one more look

viii) (one day i will look and there will be nothing in the way of a different you)

ix) I look up from the screen. Have I been gone that long? I mean, no one is an island, but I seem to be running on my own timezone sometimes. That long? I look up to the clock above the screen. That long. I look back down. You have replied a number of times, I’m the one ignoring you this time. I do need space. We both did. Time is not the issue, of course. Space, strangely enough, is. Even confined within the green and blue walls of a text, space is an issue. We keep pushing at each other, waiting for something to give, again, despite what we said. Afraid to be pulled in again. I know I am.

x) Define. Synonyms. Thesaurus.com. Rhymezone. How to. How to find the words. How to lose weight in a week! How to tell someone they’re adopted. How to tell someone that it’s complicated but you want to see them but not in that way but also you do. How to tell someone you’re pregnant. How to video exclusive. How to go about starting the conversation. How to lose friends and alienate people and befriend aliens. How to tell you.

Collaboration with Emily Chou

140story – Summeresque edition

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Can you hear the waves crushing crashing..?

Flowing

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It pulses. Listen?

At heart, it hears the river flow
the humble river the river burns.

No real direction
from your starting point
other than onwards downwards inwards
it heals as it runs up stream down stream streaming constant flowing constant changing constant motion reckless breaking through the banks the dams the walls that hold that stand that shelter that keep that ground that close that stop.

It pauses. Shuffle?

Stumble upon stumble into another stream another beam another ray no other way to run to lose to loosen off this crude matter it don’t matter where when there then the forces beyond forces within forces join and grow and glow and flow wild harder faster further higher more than more then anchored grounded held still stood stopped.

It pleases. Feel?

how it shapes | how it shares | how it flows
what it shapes | what it shares | what it grows
why it shapes | why it shares | why it knows

Know how. Know what. Know why. Now.

NaPoWriMo 2015 Day 16 – April suburb

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Flowerbeds around
where you chased footballs:
and now in the rubble
soiled flowers bloom to the dry breath
of springtime walls.
But in your eyes and in your voice
there is water,
coolness in your depths, rooted
beyond clods and seasons, in what
remains on the tops
damp snow:
and so you rush through every vein
and tell
that remote road still
and the wind
light over gigantic
blue chasms.

[Original Italian by Antonia Pozzi (1912-1938), ‘Periferia in aprile’.]

The Unwritten: Apocalypse #6

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UnwrittenApoc6

Synopsis
“The Fisher King,” part 1 of 3. As Pullman’s cold war against stories turns hot, it’s in stories that Tom must find the weapons and allies he’ll need to beat him. And the best weapon of all is one a thousand knights have quested for…

Story
With issue #6, the midpoint of the series, The Unwritten: Apocalypse begins its next story-arc: The Fisher King. ‘Sang’ returns to the main cast(s), the ‘main’ narratives and the main concern for most involved – Pullman’s plot.
In a two-page sequence, Mike Carey makes sure to show off a little more, by not only featuring some of the mechanicals from A Midsummer Night’s Dream, but making sure their dialogue is ridiculously pun-riddled and crafted. Probably to counterbalance some seriously graphic language (which, at this point in the story, just easily slips into some characters’ mouths) and really serious subject matters, from Sumerian to chanson de geste to Arthurian (with some Twain and Tennyson) via Christianity, the Tommy Taylor books and the joy that is Richie Savoy.
Carey really drags us through a brief history of world literature, looking at incarnations of the same concept in multiple eras, minds and words, eventually settling on some Taylor and Tennyson (a version of his ‘The Marriage of Geraint’ idyll) for the rising finale – and giving an old device and character a new take on life. After a fashion.

Art
Peter Gross returns on full artwork duties, and does some dazzling layouts with panelwork, between using cups, trompe-l’œil, page bleeds and hovering frames – and the final page is a triumph of artistic imitation, with exquisite details worthy of Albrecht Dürer’s ‘The Knight Death And The Devil’ or ‘The Knight and the Landsknecht’ (among many others), and some influences from the Rheads’ illustrations of Tennyson’s poem and even Dean Ormston references.
What Chris Chuckry’s colours bring to the mix are some impressively, given the tone of the issue, softer hues and shading, giving way to superb light/dark contrasts as the story progresses and a key player enters the fray. As for the lettering, Todd Klein clearly loves Pullman and any sound he makes – not forgetting the title page (which, unsurprisingly, also features Pullman).
Cover artist Yuko Shimizu also channels some of her inner Dürer, giving us a gorgeous still life with flying cat and maanim/Graal/cup/Goblet of Fire, also in very soft sepia tones, image once again in sync with the story within the issue.

Thoughts (May Contain Spoilers)
More penises, foul language, Shakespearean puns, creation and destruction myths, recurring themes, cups, trumpets, grails, blood, wit, Pullman and more world literature that you can shake a wooden cross at. If that doesn’t drag you into this great set-up issue for what’s to come, maybe the spectacular cover, astounding interior art and colours, glorious last page or fabulous fontwork will. I am still incredibly impressed with how high this series holds it standard, rippling in the breeze of page turning.

The Unwritten: Apocalypse #6 is now available in shops and digitally here. There is also a new interview with Carey and Gross here.

NaPoWriMo Day 23 – Writing a Picture

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Here I trace the first line
as straight as I can go,
a moat between grains and glass
separating what comes now,
what came then and what comes later.

Here I move inside the first contour
as light as I can go.
A face, hands immovable moving
timed reactions framed in
blank spaces, words will come later.

Here I draw the second scene
as quiet as I can go
the sequence scuttling along
fed by salt and sand and more.
Another scene will come later.

Here I stand back for a second
as the story before me
sits, crashing and roaring
washing into another page and another
after that. More will come later.

Tunnel

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She wasn’t claustrophobic, she just didn’t like the idea of the entirety of the Thames pressing down upon her head. Squeezing the tunnel, pushing at its round edges, clasping it in a slimy polluted cold grip. Still, all trains were delayed, too late for the ferry, walking was the only way across. She could hear someone else’s steps from below, it gave her courage. She headed not too quickly down the spiralling stairs, counting each step under her breath, and reached the beginning of the tunnel. She started to walk.

An overhead light flickered. As she stopped walking, so did the sound of footsteps from the other side of the tunnel. She noticed she had been alone for a while now. Alone, in dim light, in a tunnel under a river. She felt something gripping at her chest, and made to sprint toward the exit. A sudden gurgling sound startled her, making her stop. As she caught her breath again, she kept hearing the same, repetitive sound coming from somewhere above her. Panic quickly crept its way in as she realised what it was: the slow, regular drip of water, trickling in from the tunnel’s ceiling. She could no longer hear herself breathing, or her heart beating in her chest. All she could hear now was a soft, terrifying drip, drip, drip.

NaPoWriMo Day 12 – Fiumi II

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Erano tue le acque straniere
contate nel flusso continuo
di lacrime e sangue dei tuoi compagni?

Era tuo il compito di tessere
le fibre universali
in un’unica, tragica storia?

Erano tuoi i ricordi
di schiene curve sui campi
e braccia stanche?

Era tuo il ramo spezzato
tuo il sasso frastagliato
tua la giovinezza riarsa?

Era tuo il dolore
di non appartenere
di non sentire
di non credere?

Quante altre storie
sopravvissute, mai scritte
affluiscono allo stesso fiume?

 

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Credits
This is a response to Giuseppe Ungaretti’s I Fiumi, from a prompt by Jo Bell.

Risposta a I Fiumi di Giuseppe Ungaretti, su un’idea di Jo Bell per il giorno 12 di NaPoWriMo.