I’m sorry but I can’t write a poem for you. There was nothing beautiful about your death I wasn’t even there, I heard about it on Snapchat when our buds were at your wake & thought how fuckin lame is my relationship with my friends that I’m the last to know & then I thought you’d give me a big ole smack of words, you destroyer, for making your absence about me. I can’t write about it, I’m sorry. Every literary device I throw down sits in my mouth like raw garlic & nothin’s sweet or sour, Madrugada. What’d you do when they told ya? look in the mirror & tell your brain “you bastard”? look at your hands & wish they could fish hook it out of your skull like a scab? Did you deny your body’s betrayal or did you find it consistent? I can’t put it together. You know when the chemistry teacher says a gas will expand to fit its container? It’s just like that. All I wanna do is turn these poetic particles into liquid so at least they’d flow like the rushing stream of your memory but I’m all dried up. All I could do was pour Bacardi down the sink, I gave you two shots but didn’t tell because my roommate was callous and would hound me for wasting alcohol. I thought about you in Malaysia during a sunrise & spoke your name, La Madrugada Roja. You died seven months ago but this is the best I could do.
Two pages of a zine I created today.
I finally finished the lyrics to a song I started writing in 2013.
I edited many poems and wrote more
This week is going well!
Yesterday was my dog’s 5th birthday
we had a bonfire.
Tomorrow I’m doing stand up comedy for the first time ever.
This is not a poem.
Here’s an excerpt from the beginning of Sort of Super. Randy Bones has just stumbled out of the spaceship onto a new planet and is accosted by an old man claiming to give him superpowers.
“You get four options,” the man began.
Four options? “Isn’t it usually three?” Randy asked the stranger.
The old man snapped, “The number of options depends on which type of people we’re short on.”
“Wha-? There are types? But that means I’m not…” he tried to think of a word that wouldn’t make him sound like a whining schoolboy, but time was running thin. “I’m not special?”
“No. You were chosen from among the earthlings because of your incredible generic-ness. You are average in almost every way.” Delight oozed from the man’s face as he continued, “Average height, average weight, job performance. Even your romantic life is average. You’ve had sex twice in the past year. Honestly I’m quite pleased you’re one of my recruits. What you do excel at, however, is imagination. Your thoughts are almost constantly going to another world. That’s value.”
Randy wanted to cry. He wasn’t special? Someone was reading his mind? How many sexual fantasies did this old man know about? How did he know about his sex life? And hell, he thought working as a daytime receptionist for a music venue was hella cool but whatever!
Prepare: this post is about a writer’s (my) process. In the words of President Trump, this post is going to be “really boring.” He’s so quotable.
In addition to the poetry, short stories and novels, I’ve been working on a novella for the past few months. Intermittently. Here’s how plans change: my original goal for this comedy sci-fi was 13k words. But I started getting further along and thought, wow I can push this puppy to 75k or even a series!
Then came the middle. You know, that evil part of every story writers scowl at. No, they think. The beginning is going so well, I won’t lose momentum this time. Mm mm no how. Then they lose momentum. We, I should say. We lose momentum.
I lost momentum. How was I supposed to start a civil war on a new planet? Thank goodness for Future Eva, who knows the answers to all of Present Eva’s plot questions. She’s so smart. Truly though, I’ll leave all that figuring-out stuff for editing. That comes next week.
Anyway, my new goal became a 35 thousand word deliciously sweet novella. But when I hit 29k, I thought, “FUCK YOU, 35,000! I say NO!” I’m not adding more unnecessary shit when I simply want to go back through the story and make it solid. I thought of an ending that I’ll marinate for a while during my editing time. I think it will be pretty funny. At least, funny enough to make me toss my head back and croak a solid “heh!”. It will give me more pages. But LO! My goal isn’t more words, more pages, more content. I’m with the idea that this story doesn’t need to be novel length. Shorter and stronger, that’s what I say.
The title I landed on is “Sort of Super Volume 1”. I keep the series idea alive so I can eventually do an Avengers-type storyline with my supernatural characters on another planet. I get so excited just thinking about it!
As for publishing, I have it in my mind to self publish with Amazon Kindle. Which means I’m going to design the front cover too. Which means I get to use my art degree! I chose to self-publish because I don’t want to wait around for someone at Random House to reject my work when I could have tens of people reject my work immediately. Results, people. Results.
That’s all for now,
you only commit to illusions like me
pulling fists from my pockets
but they’re bees
in your stomach
your mouth is full with the honey of my language
yes, it’s crimson and clover
dripping over and over
you ran up the alp to thrust your heart in shape
but worked too hard
it’s over zealous
you caught a bird in your hands
who flew you south for the winter
now your blood’s with the crows
and you’ll never learn my syntax
Tempe, Arizona is the Oscars on a blowup bed,
my dog saying No to the desert mountain,
my phone saying ARGH to the car door,
the book saying No to the glass of water
and me saying What Have I Done to the watery book.
I almost did not find you because of the sunset.
That fucker took my eyes like a beak to marbles
and the visor in the car? I slapped my face with it.
Knocked the wraparound sunglasses clean off.
The sun spat “look at me, you ignorant swine”
and I was like, “Amarillo?”
I just heard about a Poetry Foundation competition that I’m going to compete in. It’s for young poets aged 21-31 (that’s me). They’ve got a reputation for having capital “P” Poetry. This isn’t the duck-art of painting where the judges want pretty winter scenes and loons on lakes. They like gritty guts and sticky words and visual transportation. Every poem on the site (okay I haven’t read every poem on the site) is filled with more goo than a jelly doughnut, and absolutely NO moody teens with hard feelings.
The stuff I’ve been working on is more spoken-word story telling. I don’t wanna mold myself for an audience, but that doesn’t mean I can’t push myself to be more memorable. Notes for approaching: I ought to have a cohesive set of poems. One theme loosely bound.
Two come to mind:
I’m leaning towards travel, just because that’s the freshest and comes with the richest imagery. I think that theme could be more malleable. Anger is great for inspiration, but so far it’s only given me dark words.
I cannot exceed 10 pages of poetry. This presents me with a goal! I continue to write everyday but I will have to focus on poetry right now. Application due April 30th but submissions accepted now. Here’s the link.
it’s 2017 and I owe the library a dollar twenty
I forgot four books at once
but they don’t talk about it at the checkout.
no “hey look it happens but if you don’t pay us back
you’ll never read Stephen King in this town again”
consider me a villain
give me a franchise
Miss Sayonara and the Book of No Return
read the reviews
Box Office Anti Hero Stuffs Two Dollars in Envelope
Bloody Insignia Indicates Unstable Temperament
wait for me to slip up
Book Bandit at it Again
Library Seeks Revenge
A Dollar Fifty