Wednesday, September 4, 2013

The Kingdom of Life and Death

two weeks ago i threw a stone
at the water and watched it skip three times, thinking
it will never do to grow old and content.


somewhere beneath this river
there is a castle built from stones i’ve thrown,
and all of the fish are kings and queens.

they’ve never been asked about their royal decrees.
no one has ever wished them a happy birthday.
they reign over the kingdom of life and death, and even the river
refuses to stop and mourn them when they go.


one week ago i found a moss-covered stump,
and instead of crying, i counted its rings.


if you were to cut me crosswise, i don’t know
what you’d find. perhaps severed arteries 
pouring out gold and poetry,
ancient cave paintings splashed across my vertebrae,
or the secret to immunity brewing
in the cauldron of my hips.

maybe you wouldn’t find anything.
i cannot grow rings, after all,
and i am no queen.


today, to celebrate my birthday,
i will head down to the river with a saw
slung over my shoulder and
chop down a tree.

i cannot help but think that one day you will
stumble across its stump and count its rings,
and you will ask the fish about what it’s like to die
without a name.

you will find a perfect skipping stone, but
instead of throwing it, you will put it in your pocket
because you know about the fish.
you know about the trees.

you know that we grow older against our will,
and even stones that skip still have to sink.

Monday, May 13, 2013

NaNo part 2344

and now a moment of silence for the first draft of my 2011 NaNoWriMo novel…‘cause that shit was bananas, b-a-n-a-n-a-s.
but now it is decidedly less terrible, and i firmly believe that i can get it through its first round of edits in time for our june trip to maine.

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

everyone i know is going to med school or traveling to europe and i’m just sitting here like goddamnit my tweet is 152 characters

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

i wish you online people lived within ten minutes of me
and then sometimes you would be like, hey, we are playing dominoes and apples to apples, would you like to come
and i would play board games with you guys
and someone would make tacos, because they heard i like tacos and hey, they have all of the ingredients, so why not
and if i started getting tired of non-stop interaction, no one would be upset if i needed to bow out early
but maybe i wouldn’t need to, and we could just also color
or sit out on a porch
and i would be like, hey, that constellation is cassiopeia, isn’t that neat
and it would be
and then we could play jenga and you would let me borrow your copy of aladdin and i would leave a secret note in your house in an unexpected place and you wouldn’t find it for three years but i would have moved away by then
and that is what i wish

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Editing: Part 13

I finally felt motivated enough to do some editing today, perhaps because my dog needs a fenced in yard, which is probably not viable for another 1.5 years. It was also in part due to my decision to ask a couple of my students if they’d be interested in reading my book. These kids are basically me ten years ago in terms of love of reading/writing, and I think it’d be nice to test my words out.
The issue is that I simply was not happy with the beginning of the book. The whole shebang probably still needs a few rounds of editing to be passable, but the beginning is particularly weak. It’s a shame because I love my first line; it was picked out long before NaNoWriMo 2011 began.
I realized that if I give people my prologue to gauge interest, there’s no point in having a good first line if the rest sucks. I was forced to really examine my first few pages and admit to myself that the timing is off, and it’s off because of my first line.
It sounds silly, but rearranging the prologue was super difficult. I was emotionally attached to my beginning, and while the lines are still included, they’ve lost some of their pizzazz. I’m okay, though, because now the overall prologue is SO much cleaner, and makes a lot more sense.
I guess the main thing I’ve learned from the editing process is not to get too attached to any one thing, because you might need to move it or leave it out to improve the overall experience.

Sunday, February 3, 2013

restless life syndrome.

things i am currently worried about

1. is this soda going to keep me from falling asleep at a normal hour?
2. what happened to the other half of the debit card i just discovered in bed?
3. what do my insides look like RIGHT NOW?

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Editing Tip

Read your words aloud, preferable to an elementary schooler. They will call your shit out. If you don’t have one on hand, just read it to yourself and fix the parts where your characters sound like they’re speaking with a mouth full of marbles.

Friday, January 18, 2013

hi i have no filter and oh hey why did i say that but no seriously why
a book by me.