The first essay knocked my socks off, and I wish that kind of writing would have continued. I dug some and didn't dig some BUT (and this is a big BUT)...moreThe first essay knocked my socks off, and I wish that kind of writing would have continued. I dug some and didn't dig some BUT (and this is a big BUT) the little essay on shopping malls was a hundred percent awesomeness. (less)
Obnoxious as it may seem (and is); Leviathan is about a writer writing Leviathan about a writer who already wrote Leviathan. And just to make things i...moreObnoxious as it may seem (and is); Leviathan is about a writer writing Leviathan about a writer who already wrote Leviathan. And just to make things interesting the "writer" smells faintly of (who else) Paul Auster who is (of course) writing the novel. Yippie. (less)
Book where. Get a sense of what is said and taking what is said pump it up and put it into the histories. A history set lik...moreCity Eclogue by Ed Roberson
Book where. Get a sense of what is said and taking what is said pump it up and put it into the histories. A history set like a chemistry set. But not about histories, not concerned with history/ies as an end. No end to. What is said. Sayings aftershock. Proceeds of an aftershock. The scene. The version. The double version. All that still shuffles what decisions to make. Which who we were when we are going there.(less)
Swooped in for the reread and longed and thinned (sighed) as to howandwhy the arrangement of figurines so pleases me. In order to form a more perfect...moreSwooped in for the reread and longed and thinned (sighed) as to howandwhy the arrangement of figurines so pleases me. In order to form a more perfect union and secure the blessings of liberty. Times four I have read pride and prejudice and made a bracelet out of my reading. I have nothing to say about it. I have two cats.(less)
Never have I been much of aFitzgeraldfan. Never. Not when I read Gatspy in high school (especially not the way it's taught- ugh!). Not when I read Par...moreNever have I been much of a Fitzgerald fan. Never. Not when I read Gatspy in high school (especially not the way it's taught- ugh!). Not when I read Paradise in grad school. And now, post-damned, I'm still not sure I really like him. So why have I read three of his books? Well... I think I wanted to read something about New York--something roaring or perhaps I just wanted to hate on him again. It's too easy to see the failings in this book. They're almost irrefutable. The story just lurches along. Fitzgerald self-indulgently over-describes, falls for cheap tricks, overkills the "theme" and in the end, it's all sort of a wreck. But he's such a flawed writer that his flaws actually become kind of endearing to me. I could feel the writing (or the struggle to write) throughout. It's easy to tangle Fitzgerald up with his characters (and not just one of them) in a delicate self-reflexive mess. And while this writerly writing is usually a pain in my ass, Fitzgerald's vulnerability sort of saves it, redeems it, and ends up being not a little extraordinary.(less)
Don't you think I should do something long for the Brothers Karamazov. One on one with their names which are tremendous to me. The portraits they make...moreDon't you think I should do something long for the Brothers Karamazov. One on one with their names which are tremendous to me. The portraits they make in the long hallway. I'm on this moving sidewalk down the hall. I'm on my new Kindle. And the word is 'nasty' all the time, as in doing "nasty things" donning a "nasty thin, red beard" because "it's nasty here"--who uses that word that way? And the Devil in Ivan's room I so thoroughly enjoyed--good god, for that part alone we should all be running up the mountain to stare down. So I am on the mountain and there they are. And it's funny that I don't know what to say. It's not so much thunderstruck or godlike up here. It's pleasant to be lonely, it's tyrannical, it's sweet with smoke -- and flapping below erstwhile everything flaps and asks and answers 'each to each' one might say if one was a bastard like me. That bastard 'self-laceration' you'll have to take up with Dostoevsky when you finish your quadrillion kilometers and reach the door and fall apart. I'll tell you what tho. That this mess is a kinship. That it's winking and ramshackle despair. And as far away from punctuation as possible, it is enough to fill your lungs with and blow hard and be done like an onion in somebody's hand.(less)
About the hammocks that swing offbeat and the ants counting on rotten food, the kind of mouth you have to have to say it. How unfair, you might say; t...moreAbout the hammocks that swing offbeat and the ants counting on rotten food, the kind of mouth you have to have to say it. How unfair, you might say; the blueprinting done in ghost, a third party, not even someone you can count on. That "home" is like that, across all that time and land, and they're expected to live with this? They are.(less)
I am not, as I once claimed, Oscar Wilde. I lost the green coat—the one I wore to America, with tufts of fur falling out of the collar, with shapely c...moreI am not, as I once claimed, Oscar Wilde. I lost the green coat—the one I wore to America, with tufts of fur falling out of the collar, with shapely cuffs. I lost the books (their dedications), shoes (the tipped ones, the ones you lace right up to your britches), and the shape of my wife’s mouth when she said it, when she called my name, even that, even when I didn’t come.
And because I am not Oscar Wilde, because someone’s body is thinning in the dirt, I can still say this. Say, through this blue sheen, that he (Did you know they found shit smeared on the sheets of his bed? That boys young enough to climb stairs climbed the stairs of his suite?) that Oscar Wilde bled from the eyes and mouth right before—
And I wonder (justly) if something might have exploded there, in his head, maybe something in the ear, something eating straight through. Maybe it was a little itch, a syphilis, that scratched the eyes’ interior. A disease that lived inside the tongue and the skull couldn’t hold it, couldn’t (either he or the wallpaper had to go).
Oscar, if you place a glass of water on the bed, someone is bound to knock it over. The boy will spill it, the boy will capsize—a beautiful Greek boy—he will ride the sea’s black coattails all the way down. Your hyacinth, Oscar, will break the vase, break every part of the vase, out of beauty.
So Oscar pushed up his shirtsleeves and (there, there are my hands—now take them) let them lead. The law. He listened (he never listened before) to the funny sound that hunger made, the crescendo, the bells turning up their skirts, the throttle of his throat, the ropes of his intestines wrung out. During the course of two years (it was only two years), the buzzing began. It was one prison, then another (there were only three); and he grew too large for the space, for a cell suited to the taking and leaving of prostitutes. He was too large for such of ceiling, for the blur of windows placed just below the ceiling, for all things having to do with penance.
He wanted to read Dante in prison. He wanted the darkness he squinted into to take a form, any form, to become black pages, one after another ruffling under his fingers. He wanted the weight to shift from his right hand to the left, and then the book would end like an accordion squeezed shut, finally silent.
He wanted to learn Italian, so after prison the words would not appear misplaced. He wanted to ride of the back of those words, to stuff himself into the new tongues forming around his teeth. I will write a play, he said. And he didn’t. I will write a poem, he said, and it was bad. I have forgotten everything he said, and the slits of eyes stared back at him.
Maybe there will be new boys. New cigarette cases. Lectures. He thought this, but No. His wife changed her name and died. He never looked at his children again. He held a hand mirror, held it over his anus and strained to see. And in this thinning hair, in this new kind of bankruptcy, there was nothing to send to the children in prison, the ones locked up for shooting rabbits. For them, nothing.(less)