The Light of What They Suffer

IMG_4086An egg-shaped paperweight sits on top of a stack of books in one of the cubbies of our largest bookshelf. Fixed in the middle of its transparency is a jellyfish, frosted white. Its body, the part that pulsates and spreads as it travels through the water, is about the size of teacup and the tentacles hang from its inversion. In the egg, there’s the reflection of the outside—in another time, the blue of summer midday, now, a sliver of white, of cold season and I squint to see the snow that’s falling, to witness its movement, hoping it transfers to illusion of movement of the wiry thin tentacles, to watch the jellyfish swim upwards towards the surface, to break free, to stretch through its resin.

When I stop imagining, stop seeing it swim, the entire action of my scene continue reading…

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Voice Box

Spire 8On the second Tuesday of each month, Fitzgerald’s night club in Berwyn, IL hosts a storytelling and music event called Voice Box. There is monthly theme for storytellers to work from, the themes being a song title, which usually reflects the season in some manner. This month’s theme was ‘Ghostbusters.’ Cathy Richardson, a fucking amazing singer, no joke, starts the night out by performing the theme song and then Voice Box founder, Maureen Muldoon, introduces the evening’s speakers. A story is told, either from the hip or pre-written (my comfort) and then Cathy comes back up and performs a song inspired from what she just heard being read, from ‘Rhiannon’ to ‘I’ve Had the Time of My Life’ to the Prentenders’ ‘The Wait’ to some of Cathy’s original. It’s an amazing continue reading…

September 11, 2013

smoke 8Any of us who were sentient remember what we were doing that Tuesday morning. I was in my car, eastbound, halfway to work and it was sunny, which caused traffic, and I had the windows down and was listening to the radio. In between songs the DJ reported that a plane crashed into one of the towers. We weren’t informed on which building, what type of plane–though many, me included, assumed it was something small–or that this was an early portion of a greater impact. Who knew? Nobody’s mind could go that far in that direction. More news was reported about it, some things false, some things that sounded like they couldn’t continue reading…

Arc

Soldier 8I was in the library looking for a magazine on Biblical archeology when I passed an image on the shelf that stopped me. There was a cover of a military journal that showed a photograph of the moment before the execution of an Australian, Leonard Siffleet, in 1943 by Japanese officer Yasuno Chikao, who ordered a photo be taken of Siffleet’s murder. I took a picture of that image and haven’t forgotten it in the way you sometimes forget pictures, as if in the taking of them you allow substitution of your memory to keep them. You save them elsewhere and then can forget.

What this soldier thinks of, what others continue reading…

Another

Sunrise 8Remember what I was going to be?  Remember the first time you saw the hitch post at the old west town?  It was in Phoenix in the fall, though the air said summer; in Phoenix there didn’t seem that there’d ever be a different season.  You tried alligator for the first time, the only time, and tried to throw knives into a wooden target ten feet ahead of you – for a prize? – and figured that you’d be able to do it if you visualized a camera watching you do it, following the knife as it left your hand, tumbling, orderly, on a path to the scarred wood circle, cinematic, the camera on a dolly, no, fixed, but pivoting, like a head watching a tennis match from when that throwing knife left your hand until it stuck, in the board, ten feet away.  But it was me, seeing continue reading…