Doe Words

small sounds in the hurricane whirl

December 7


I keep thinking back to a newness so clean it would negate my birth—tesseracted buildings back before their blueprints were drawn.  They flip between being and unbeing, inconsistencies as tangible as bricks.  A strategic homelessness; the gratitude for a tarp when you’ve forgotten your keys.  The thin thought process it takes to accept this.  I have friends who still think it’s easier to live in cars and maybe they’re right, though I get lost too easily.  Steeled veins in a desert night—The sun’s cold is just distance.  There are no anomalies.  There are freedoms I’ve passed over and distanced, maybe eternally.  I like eternals.  I like spans and instants in a raw way that makes my heart feel saline.  I know the same things about ice I know about drought.  How water is an apology that might never come.

I’ve reached the point where I must adopt a brutal faith

I wonder if these thoughts are annoying or if it matters if they are.  Definitely stupid, but a virgin-stupid, prescient and growing.  These days I’m interested in knits—book bindings, spiderwebs, chains—things that grow and compact by the laws of their intrinsic structure.  Butterfly goo in the chrysalis.  The words ancient prophets have to say about friendships; the laws of drought.  How I might feel different in new architectures, or more fully convinced of basic unrealities in my presence.  How a generation lost might blame the north node of the moon, how some palms are warm the way others are scattered by wayward winds, crusts scarred with fulgurite, memories of rift bombast in the ringing beneath ears.

In Kauai my faith in hurricanes is a kind of breath, a surf-scarred way of thinking onto which things grasp—black crabs to the side of volcanic rocks, orchids leeched onto trees.  A braced calm, monk minds calculated in relaxation.  My mom and I—lilikois, blue marble trees—existing in and in between gin and tonics, wasabi almonds, rice crackers, ylang-ylang and blossoming rain, the horizon’s white line expanding to the brink of tangibility.  Creatured-seas on cliffs.  Still I subsist within a Capricorn sense of demise, stemmed from worry of things I can’t see, though we pour our beliefs into what is there: tiny sea turtles in her earlobes, prayer beads on the ground, singing bowls in the crystal shop so beautiful the walls could cave and I might die a Billabong, California brat in paradise but for the loss, the heat, the sounds.

Air Loom

Air Loom

Some of you say, “It is the north wind who has woven the clothes to wear.”

But shame was his loom, and the softening of the sinews was his thread.

And when his work was done he laughed in the forest.

Khalil Gibran, The Prophet

The Arsonist

My sisters rely on ponds to survive. Deep in the Midland Black the bogs cycle clear water through webs of sphagnum, a system stretching from the forest to the stone steps on the flat. The ground is level in most places, a defunct womb, a fox trap overgrown with moss. The moon hangs in the sky ringed with disease, and we are too alone.

My sisters scrape black crawfish from the net edges and cook them in pots over fire while we think about the unevenness. We think of ourselves as equals—feel our sameness through the currents in our blood—but still our eldest was around for a time the rest of us didn’t exist, when we were unreal or less, locked in the precepts of nebula. Our eldest won’t talk these days and we don’t know what she’s seen of loneliness. Our questions are clumsy, the grace of crawfish claws in their last moments of boiling.

I light all the fires under our pots. It is my natal dexterity, my blood-moon birthright. Others have the nets, the moss, priestess-knowledge, reservoirs deep as peat; I raise flames to curl with the helix of hazel branches.

If we had names we might forget ourselves. We don’t need them in the flatness, where we can see from the forest straight through to the Edge. We read the difference in our faces like the runes in the stones; the meaning we’ve forgotten because our eldest doesn’t speak. We get glimmers of understanding, deep truths from our ionized psyche, the unconscious we formed from, plasmatic astronomy traced into our bones. The things we know are smoke-thick, then gone; we are acclimated to enough.

What we know about our lineage are irises covering the range of feldspar, dark hair from the depths of the mires. It would be imbalanced to have a favorite sister, but these days I spend most of my time with the bone-carver. Of all my sisters she maybe looks the most like me: hooded eyes, rune-slice cheeks.  The bone carver makes our tools from the fallow deer midden after a fresh kill; she is particularly adept at knives. The bone-carver is the one who kills most of the fallows we rely on in the Midland Black these days, for hoods, for oils, for meat, for bones. There are many things we can say to each other without speaking, only through our iridium looks, language audible to fallows and storms.

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Not yet endless


1. Zen

2. Anger flares of acne

3. Moisture (like an orchid)

4. Dreams about hair dye and poison

5. Fixed impermanence

6. Swimming pools

7. Actively un-naming things

8. Helixed seeds

9. Lavender surface cleaner

10. If any of this means anything I’m not ready to hear it


It’s like this when I begin to exist outside of time: in nominal hours, or just the hyper-steadied reality of inconsequence.  How always blue ink makes me dizzy like the crystalline stitch of air, how washing dirt off my feet separates me from the rottweilers, from our skulls, from our bites and our dreams of circles.  Omens prick the atmosphere—you wanted this—a raven on the roof pitch, the glare of dandelion seeds, teenage doves learning about wingspans and snap-jaws, broken pool filters.  Rereading the same book about psychics too often and now I’m guarded, sleep behind concrete walls, wondering if there can exist a life incapable of birth or stains or are we all just products of an interminable weather.

Reading Tanya Luhrmann


IMG_8140nealwisdom 1459715_10200732165825058_942404468_n

1. poem of words I’ve crossed out recently

2. words by a best friend that are looping my skull in [daisy] chains

3. where I’ll be this fall


I’m beginning to remember the nights at Eschaton
where my hands bled that first time
and the happiness of champagne embers
spread through the wires, made me dizzy
in low corners, called me dirty bomb words
slick with ribbons like an octopus

who whispered
a thousand emptied circles until
blood pillowed in my cheeks
and the stoplights blistered in shallow rain

where I learned I never knew myself
not in the middle of things
barely beyond the edges where lines fade out
become other objects, reaching lithe
in the soaked air of canyons

These Days

 I wrote this a year ago about a couple boys who broke my heart and don’t know me anymore.

I like the boys at night who let me
read sad poetry and describe my
days to them. Who put my whiskey
always on their tab. Who have twenty-nine
ways of taking a joke too far, heaven-crying
for punch lines to that jerk’s jaw behind the bar,
I love the mad ones that splatter paint all over
the sidewalks and then say sorry. When I snag
a sweater by accident and he’ll run the whole line
to Santa Barbara, to the cliff face, to the knees
with the holes in the jeans. The ones who grow
their hair long on webcam while I’m in Sweden
and then don’t call when I return. They drop
my name in anecdotes at parties and their friends
tell them I’m pretty the way a baseball bat is
the most beautiful thing that cracked, and I write
them travel texts while I’m in my bedroom,
feet socked up and tissue-ripped, praying for more
time to not lie about mileage anymore. The ones
that my brothers waiting in North Hollywood hate;
my 1 a.m. arrival for lectures and drunk Legos but
I’m not there. I’m standing on skinned feet swaying
with the Santa Ana, the sky cracked in concert split
seconds before I’m robbed blind, clock-faced, crash
and cover in the nearest palm tree. Let’s wait here,
my California loves, for the sun.

Sacramental Spring



Spring 2013

Maybe it’s faith and maybe it’s memory

Soaking in a few new projects right now; might post some old poems in the near future.   A few things that are blowing my mind right now:

The discovery of new (old) Sappho

Mira Gonzalez

This Mondrian-prairie-sun-house-thing by Autumn de Wilde

The Spoils of Babylon


Every Woman and everything by Natalia Leite and Alexandra Roxo

The return of the wallet chain (and not a second too soon)


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