Wednesday, December 14, 2011

While I'm a Young Thing...

I just want to sit at home by myself with a bottle of wine and write and cry about how I’m no Ernest Hemingway.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

My Early Christmas Gift

It's not the ring that I wanted, but it was unexpected and it's beautiful and perfect.
He loves me and that's all I really need.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

Snoring Afternoon

We giggle at the thought
of that peculiar snoring sound.
Suddenly, I miss home.

Sitting in your arms, I make
the same analogy. Tom & Jerry
and old cartoons with feathers
following the breathing patterns of a sleeping
fat man.

You pretend that's me,
but I only talk in my sleep.
You're the one who lightly grizzles.

You're not as obnoxious as my dad, who was always
sitting on the couch or a chair back home,
snoring like a storm despite how many
folded socks I tossed at him.

I know you're missing how your dad used to snore
on long afternoons, lazily watching golf on TV.

I soothe you while you're sitting
in your chair: send my fingers
through your hair, let you morph into
a child- helpless and wanting- until you fall
asleep with your head buried
in my neck.

Then I hear the light breathy whir- the sound
of your snoring in the afternoon.

No sleep. Just Thoughts.

11:32 P.M.
You swallow your sleeping pill and chase it with a kiss before we lie
down in the darkness, pure dark when electricity first vanishes.
I don't recognize these familiar shapes, even the shape of your body,
only small circles of light burning their piercing colors into my retinas.

I stare at the shadows dancing across the roof as streetlight
streams in through the window. It reminds me, the world is outside.
Voices bustle, murmured
past 2 A.M.

Just lying there. I think about mid-November and the way I cried
about your dad more than you did. That's how we started, or rather,
when he ended. Then I find my mind on January when we first fell apart.

I feel the weight of my limbs sinking lower
into the mattress, into the dent in the side I sleep on.
I notice the strands of my hair set loose
in the sheets (I know how that pisses you off)
and a hazy outline of my face near the wall, adjacent
to the hole that still needs repair; you need it too.
The wall never changes even when everything else does.

We're tucked into these oversized sheets
(too big for a twin bed)
like corpses in a coffin. I feel the dead
weight of your arm across my waist. Heavier, heavier.
My eyes fizzle with the light of the clock.
4:08. Yes, in the morning.

I exhale a sigh of frustration. You're like a secure barrier
keeping me tucked inside the sheets. Trying to, anyway.

I extend my arm across your back and send my fingertips exploring
the vast mountain of your shoulders where you keep the stress, bottled up.
My attempt at comfort. No sleep. Just thoughts of it.

Yeah, you took your damn pills. Your sleep comes more easily now.
But I carry your stress under my eyes. Dark circles. Dark thoughts.
Thoughts of your dead father, buried now for almost four months' time.

Carry the casket, the sorrow. Now I carry part of the blame
for your explanations as to why you run from thoughts of death.
American “hush hush.” Hispanic “lo siento.”

Alcohol and pills: Your survival guide to life.
I just want to fix you; us; this whole complicated scenario.
We're sleeping in his coffin. Sounds so fucking cliché.
7:45 AM- time to wake up.

Ode to My Family's Old Purple Van

In the middle seat
of our burnt purple shell of a minivan,
I sat watching the world flash by time and again.

With enough room in this row for two,
I often sat through the sleepless drives toward
historical destinations on summer trips to Virginia,
Washington D.C., New York City... anywhere really.
My drowsy head rolling sideways
in search of refuge on Amanda's unwilling shoulder.
The bonds of sisterly bickering
on these roadtrips were commonly animated
with a pair of Jessica's adolescent feet
dressed in doll clothing, hanging over the edge
of my retractable armrest.

The itchy patterned fabric was a close friend
- a confidant- who soaked up my tears
and the bitter taste of goodbyes.

Tears for my buried idol, Abuelo.
Tears for words too harshly spoken, sidewalk-chipped teeth,
and for raw elbows and knee-skin
freshly broken on school-ground pavement.
Even tears of laughter trailing back
from sunny daytrips to the beach, sand
buried in the scratchy grey cushions and rugs.

Peeling tint that smelt of melted plastic became a hobby,
easy entertainment on the most tedious drives through
hours of bumpers close to kissing and the thrill
of driving on the part of the road that tilts.

My childhood was in that seat, buckled in tightly
while the world sped past as fluttering shadows
across the drooped rooftop, stopping only at dead
red lights, zooming past any color green through
“orange” (as they'd say), defensive in the ever- expected
traffic of Miami at even the darkest hours, when lights
only flash yellow.

There was always the fight for the front seat,
but I'm disinterested. I want
the middle
where I have full view of everything.

Don't Go to Bed with Wet Hair

I'm almost two feet taller now, but no longer at home.
I don't have the same comfort from the hair dryer's
fiery electric drone.

I used to watch the clock dance for hours
and wish I could sleep. I'd scrunch my toes
in the cold contrast and bunch up my shoulders.

Only simple commands were called out:
“Turn. Left. Up. Down.”

When he had insisted wet hair would make me sick
I hesitantly decided, Dad knows best; Old age made him wise.

So I would stare at the bathroom tiles with a burn
behind my eyes. I knew it was an inevitable
recurring ritual, blow-drying this hefty heap.

Through the wild mess of hair
atop my head, there were but a few chances
to catch a glimpse in the mirror, peeking
through the puff.

Blood rushed to my face as I turned my head
upside-down. The tugging brought tears.
Large fingers brushed my scalp. Heat encroached
behind my ears.

But I secretly enjoyed this painful grooming
though I would never admit it then; when I was
standing a tiny bit taller than four feet.


Sorry I have been on hiatus for quite a while. I'm going to be posting some older poetry pieces for your enjoyment. Some aren't exactly my favorite, but I hope you enjoy them.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Ono Dos Tres Quatro

Pitbull? Pitbull in a Lanvin ad?! Yes ladies and gentlemen, it has happen, and it may just be the greatest song to ever grace a fashion advertisement. Not only does it have to do with fashion/style but, God alive, Miami/ Cuban culture as well. I mean Pitbull (or as I personally like to refer him as Armando formando escandolo, es cierto) may not be the best representative of  Miami culture (Yes Pitbull, I do doubt your abilities to make a movie like Alfred Hitchcock). But he is literally a superstar. Every time I turn on the radio there he is, speaking spanglish and referencing Miami Dade county<3! I swear if I had a penny for every time Pitbull says "dale", I'd be a very happy lady. And I do shamelessly put up my radio when he raps: "My granny's from Cuba but I'm an American!" That line has been probably been repeated over a million times! Oh hai, my granny is also a Cuban and I'm an that's nuts! People around the world are singing that, along with the "dale's" and the spanglish. People around the world are basically jamming out to my culture. That's insane. And the fact that a song called "Calle Ocho," could be in a fashion ad, one that Steven Meisel worked on and  Alber Elbaz makes a cameo in(oh, he shows those models how its done), is completely, absolutely, and utterly mind blowing! I want to keep explaining how super excited I am!!!!... but I'm too tired.... Score one for the Cubans though!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

How to: Deal with haters.

Do you realize how much bigger life is than an uncomfortable run in with girls you went to high school with? In five years, you won't even give it a second thought. I promise. They are not worth your time or energy. Seriously, FORGET THEM! We all hate them anyway and there are better things in life to think about... like my adorable face! And nutella and oh I don't know, people who actually matter.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Well, somebody’s got to break the ice, and it might as well be me. Here are some excerpts from my diary--my description of 'two female specimens' will amuse people perhaps

July 16, 2011

Mom, dad, Sofi and I arrived in Savannah yesterday, after an eight-hour drive. At first, the city makes but a faint impression. I was enchanted, superficially perhaps, by the monuments and the oaks and the soft Spanish moss. Savannah is immediately pleasant and welcoming. But as the days pass, something deeper about the city begins to register. It penetrates the veneer of casual tourism into the more fundamental places in oneself.

On tombs, on obelisks, from the mouths of passing Georgians, we heard bits of legends from the days of the Civil War. Several buildings have been moved around, and, as a result, there is a general air of disturbance; Savannah is a soup of disgruntled energies, and I can’t help but wondering, whenever I look in this or that window, what jaded eyes once gazed out from its panes.

Two Female Specimens

A Georgian fairy-nymph

a. Hair: blonde, wavy, perfumed
b. Dress: red-white tie-dye shirt; jean shorts with gold embellishments
c. Body type: petite; reminiscent of a doe
d. Complexion: divine; an immaculate peach color
e. Demeanor: regally impartial; sublimely detached—yet childishly naïve
f. Interests: interior design
g. Mother: an upright southern lady, taking her little peach on the great college tour

A tropical Anna Karenina

a. Hair: nutmeg, cinnamon, short-ish
b. Dress: a long orange-yellow-purple dress that reaches her angelic ankles. A scherzo of color (bathed in the shadowy shades of a Savannah twilight)
c. Body type: elegantly curvaceous; exquisitely supple and defined
d. Complexion: lightly sun-baked—verging on a strawberry hue –a delicious complextion
e. Demeanor: graceful, reserved, aristocratic, an air of Tolstoy’s Ana Karenina
f. Interests: N/A
g. Eyes: caramel—or perhaps just hazel

July 17, 2011

We woke up early in the morning and took off to Charleston, where we were to meet Eunice [my aunt]. It was a pleasant two-hour drive—dad was reminiscing on his schoolboy days in Texas. He had “hot blood”; he picked fights left and right. It’s amusing to think of now, but back in the day, dad was something of a high school celebrity. He and Kerry—‘the school belle’—were quite the pair, inspiring envy in not a few of their socially ambitious classmates.

Eunice’s house is painted a tomato bisque color, and is without a doubt the largest on the block. It stands boldly amid the conservative blues, grays, and beiges of the neighboring houses. We were all delighted—peering into rooms, walking up stairs, gazing wistfully from the widow’s walk onto the great South Carolina marshes.

O, but it’s such a shame. Eunice devoted so much time and energy to building this house—I write this in one of the guest rooms on the first floor—and she’s putting it on the market; she can’t afford it anymore. The fruits of her labor are quite spoilt.

As she was giving us the tour of the estate—for really, an estate is what it is—all our sighs of approbation, all her anecdotes about the building of the house were tempered with the gloomy fact that the house must be sold—and sold soon. The four of us quivered with excitement: we were going to stay up late, read ghost stories, drink boiling-hot chocolate, watch the moon steal over the marsh and bathe it in its eerie porcelain glow. But at the same time we were keenly aware of a dream’s capacity to balloon into enormity, and deflate, in the end, into obscurity.

The South Carolina Marshes

How should one describe them? They are immense, glistening things. They bear secrets from the past. They form the great forts of the Civil War. How splendid it is to sprint through them on the dock, as if on a gilt sea.

There were blue crabs. Brown Pelicans. Fuzzy Whispering reeds.

Tuesday, May 31, 2011


Hope everyone is off to a nice break.

I’ve been reading reams of Edith Wharton, and plan to post a blog on her novels some time soon.

There's an excellent adaptation for one of her most famous novels, The House of Mirth, and I urge everyone to watch it (preferably alongside reading the novel). I've put the trailer below.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Go Explore

And you know as well as I do that while yes, boys are wonderful and exciting, there is SO much more to being happy and living a super amazing and wonderful life! 

So get your butt out there in the world and have a fucking blast! The teen years are almost up! Then, the damage we do will be more "adult" so enjoy this! And hello.. Miami fucking rocks. Except for clubbing or whatever, since we're underage (and I don't have a fake ID).. but the city is vast! Go explore.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Coral Gables Silence

There's a moment in the summer, yet before the summer begins
When the sun is going down and the sticky sweat on my brow does not exist
When the humid is high and my hair becomes a frantic lion's maine
When the cares of my mind have easily disappeared
And the sound outside is the perfect summer sound of complete Coral Gables silence
Where the air in my ears becomes the air in the palm trees
Where my footsteps fail to make a sound as the invisible birds sing their song of taunting
Where my dogs nails on the pavement become crunches in the grass
Where the sky above becomes it's infinite reality, and it's blue color seems to coat the day in mist
And where the giant tree on the corner of the street
With it's branches that sway to the sound of the wind
Where from afar looks like the perfect cloud that my body could float upon
And from up close looks like a city bigger than all of Miami could fill.
With it's intricate roads made of wood and buildings made of leaves and branches
Yet so quiet in its Coral Gables silence

Friday, April 22, 2011

Oprah and Barbra Walters

One really has to admire her.

More Jottings

Jottings from my trip to the Met today. (I’ve added a picture to brighten up the blog.) These are quick, spontaneous, and informal. Do not expect conventional grammar and usage.

The Little boy on the Platform—
There is a little boy on the platform, a little angel: jasmine skin, a soft grey vest, and little blue veins.

Tapestry Room From Croone Court—
A secret room with tapestried walls. Parrots; a floral chain festooned along the upper edge of the wall; bunches of ruddy flowers—reds, pinks, fuchsias, creams—towering out of urns, swelling at the corners—little gardens at the edges—clustered firs, ferns; swallows soaring across the red. Or, at least they appear to be swallows. Who can tell in this light? Dim, scant.  And chairs along the edges.
A great red room: vivid contours, empty—empty in the most luxurious sense of the word.
Some years ago, an earl lay lazily on the carpet gazing at the birds (the ones embroidered on the tapestry), his Latin book terribly neglected. The Earl and the tapestry room; the faint, warm glow of the crystal chandelier.

A Hall through Ancient Egypt—
Walking along the hall it becomes clear what palate the Ancient Egyptians preferred.  Wheat yellow—black, blue, green, and the color of the Egyptians themselves: clay-colored people, flower-pot clay, pueblo clay. We see them in the palace, in the fields, on their boats. Full, white eyes on profiled faces.

I have settled in this room because there is a round couch in the center. Here I sit—the limbs relaxing—surrounded by scenes and intrigues—the sublimest paint, gilt frames.

Let us fix our eyes on this painting in front of us—the tallest in the room, the most lavishly framed… Three women on a couch. One looks here, another there; the third, straight into the sitter’s eyes: a vague request, an inscrutable comment. The sisters bask in whiteness, radiant in the cheeks, at the chests—all in the black-green vacuum of the parlor: fresh white hyacinths waiting to be brought.

Beside the sisters, a duchess with her little boy, her little lord. Her dress bursts at the bottom into a feathery fiasco: black raven feathers.

Bocklin’s Island of the Dead
The façade is inscrutable. An island with a forest—pines so dark they become profound.

The Actor (Picasso)—
Greens, grey, pink, blue, peach, red. Acting with the hands, one held akimbo, the other—the other up, summoning, “Come here.” The back is slightly hunched. The actor: alone in his studio, all pink and blue, reciting and reciting, the hands dancing here and there.


[This piece looks quite different on the museum wall. I would have written something else, if I had only seen this picture of it.]

Grapefruit juice. Cherry tomatoes. Little balls of Mozzarella. Chocolate chip cookies.

The Concourse—
The concourse, quivering below its cerulean firmament, grown dissipated with the noon. One could comment on the people—on the way they begin to resemble insects, little gears in a mechanism—but let us skip this. There comes a point when there are so many people that they cease to be of interest—they cancel each other out; let us therefore ignore them; cast our eyes on solid things. In a concourse where people are always scurrying this way and that, it is only natural that our eyes settle on the stiller, unmoving things.

+ The primordial clock, four-faced, at the center of the concourse.
+ The flag, with its candy-cane stripes and fifty, little stars
+ The chandeliers that hang like giant Christmas ornaments from some prim and aloof above.

Bought a book on Ancient Egypt. Adolf Erman's Life in Ancient Egypt.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011


N. & M.,

Behold! Roger Mason in a spoon show off

A N D . . . He has his own website with the most unexpected photos

Words on Duras’s L’amant (The Lover)


Fanning through the pages of Ms. Duras’s novel—the book held close to my face—I am enraptured.  The scent of clean linen, soft linen, immaculate linen, neatly folded in wooden drawers, little bars of soap tucked neatly within (where?). My great aunt pacing about the house. White hair and little worried eyes—blue as a blue parrot. Mexican Tile, cake, puzzle boxes, photo albums, black-and-white photos of my great aunt, my ancestress, in the Canary Islands, a kerchief tied around her head.

But this is only the scent of my paperback copy. The tone and content of Duras’s novel are quite antithetical to all this ‘clean linen’ ‘Mexican tile’ stuff.

“As seamless and polished as a peal,” says the Boston Herald.

The novel’s central characters are unnamed, but we can identify them. They are Duras’s family, her Chinese lover, and Duras herself.

There she is. 15 ½. Crossing the Mekong river from Sadek to Saigon in current-day Vietnam. She wears her gold lamé shoes and her man’s fedora hat. The fedora makes her feel whole. It completes the inadequacy of her girlish body. “With the shoes it must have been the same, but after the hat. They contradict the hat, as the hat contradicts the puny body, so they’re right for me.”

We begin reading the lover, and find ourselves on the threshold. The threshold between Marguerite’s girlhood and her womanhood. (She is 15 AND A HALF.) The threshold between love and sex, between this side of the Mekong and that side, the threshold between the privacy of the Chinaman’s dark, little room and the din of the city.

Duras recalls her affair with a wealthy Chinaman when she was a young, poor girl living in French Indochina. Her prose is, as often noted, “spare” and “emotionally charged.”
“The shapes of men’s body’s are miserly, paternalized.”

“I'm worn out by the beauty of Hélène Lagonelle's body lying naked against mine. Her body's sublime, naked under her dress, within arm's reach. Her breasts are such as I've never seen. I've never touched them. She's immodest, Hélène Lagonelle, she doesn't realize, she walks around the dormotories without any clothes on. What's the most beautiful of all things given by God is this body of Hélène Lagonelle's, peerless, the balance between her figure and the way the body bears the breasts proffered to the hands, this outwardness held out towards them."  

Monday, April 18, 2011

A Picture and a Story


The following is a little story I made up about Wyeth's The Wind from the Sea

     So the window had been left open after all. There had been some whispering earlier at dawn, when the sky was soft and pink, as to whether it was such a good idea. “What if it rains, Lizzie?” “There’s hardly any chance of that. Come.”
     The bag was filled to the top: fresh, white towels and paisley bathing trunks—there were big hats and dark glasses, containers with cheese, with grapes, with chocolate cookies, the French ones avec Le Petit Ecolier. A big umbrella came towering from the bottom, too.
     “Are you sure about the window, Lizzie?”
     “Of course I am. Come.”
     Off they went, with a flicker of the engine, motoring along: ochre fields, charcoal houses, an incessant row of tall, rustic pines.
     And the window had been left open after all. Wide open, like a face when it yawns, like a soul left ajar.
     The wind floods into the room with a roar, rousing the curtains. It sends them splashing, pondering.
     Hours pass, pass, pass, and the house remains calm, chill; a strange sense of sleep reins over the house—drowsiness drifts to slumber.
     The hours pass, one after the other.
     The motor. The car clattering home. The ochre, the pines, the charcoal houses.

     “I told you it wouldn’t rain. But shut it now. There’s something of a draft.”
     And with the bag set on the floor, the window was shut.

Sunday, April 17, 2011

The whole world is upside-down, but sometimes things manage to turn out right-side-up.

Monday, April 11, 2011

I want to travel far away: Africa, Italy, and Spain. I just want to explore and disappear from how upsetting I seem to be here. Forgive me, please as I run away. It's just too painful not to.

Friday, April 1, 2011

Monday, March 28, 2011

Two Trailers for Two Great Movies


Spontaneous Jottings

These 2 entries are from my "city notebook"--a little notebook I take with me into the city. The second is a response to a display window at the museum of natural history.


Today is a day for description—for exploring, for inquiring, for nosing down the necks of long, bell-shaped flowers. Today is a day for discovery. So I vroom along the track—its brass rails ensconced like serpents in the snow—rushing forward, sweeping forward, without out a single regret that I have decided to spend the day alone, or that I continued to the train station, even after having lost my cell along the way. It lies, entrenched somewhere in the snowy path I took to arrive at the Bronxville station. Of course, I was not silly enough to go on without spending some time scavenging for it. But as I retraced my steps quite a few times and still could not find it, I decided to go on ahead. A phone can be replaced—but a day… alas, a day cannot. Why should one fuss, then? I rush forward, sweep forward, past slate-colored pebbles, fences and birds, under bridges, past other trains. The train rocks hither and thither, up and down. This is not the lulling lisp of the canoe or the boat, but the buzzing race of the train. It buzzes, it shifts, like a steed when urged onward by the whip of a coachman. We the passengers are the steed—its organs. We are whipped onward, urged onward—pursued— (here is the bell: “Harlem”) mesmerized by the metallic serpents leading us this way and that through the snow. We stop; we gallop. Smoke trails up from the rooftops. Now, we are an earthworm in the ground. (How amusing it is to think of all these unusual things, while a spectacled man in a green sweater reads his newspaper beside me, while Japanese words flute back and forth in front of me. What do these words mean?) The train stops.

The Birds of Australia

The hills undulate—mounting, delving, dipping—swelling like the waves of a sea, up and down. And so we dip with the waves, down the ‘eucalyptus- clad’ hills, as the little placard reads. What a lovely view! Let us remove our socks and our shoes. Let us sink our feet into the mulchy earth, from which wan shrubs shoot. Let us watch the myriad birds. Indeed, as you may have already noticed, a Dusky Swallow is perched in front of your face. It is ordinary looking enough. Perhaps what makes it so interesting is the way is stays still for you, staring ahead. Other birds scavenger through the leaves, through the earth. They peek ‘down,’ as if ‘down’ were off a cliff or into a well. Yet ‘down’ is merely the veins on a leaf, a caterpillar—white, slender—creeping between the weeds, between the stalks that appear to him as giant bamboo, between the shadows that the stalks form—lined, clustered. How exquisite to crawl through, between the stalks, as if— and yet who knows?

Tuesday, March 22, 2011


This song makes me feel really cool, like strutting with leather jackets being a member of the Strokes cool and I'm not cool........ okay maybe I'm just a little cool but I think you get it. I think I'll go saunter off somewhere and spit or something while this song plays now. coolcoolcoolcoolcool

(whyz I so cheesy? Iz don't know)

PS. its Melissa's birthday tomorrow. If she ever would posts she'd know that I wish her a happy birthday here on this very blog. Ohya

Tuesday, March 15, 2011


This song is made of unicorns and Jesus. (yes I like it that much)
Also Julian Casablancas in Burberry can do no wrong. AmIrightladies?

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

The Murderers Are Among Us Review, by Danny de la Rocha

The Murderers Are Among Us

On October 15, 1946, the first post-World War II German film, The Murderers Are Among Us, premiered in the Admiralspalast in the Soviet sector of Germany. The film, set in the dreary, rubble-leaden streets of Berlin, tells the story of a former military surgeon, Dr. Hans Mertens, striving to make sense of his life amid the chaos of the post-war world. Like the landscape that surrounds him, Dr. Merten’s internal self is in ruins. Consumed by his depression and terrible memories of the war, he turns to alcohol. It is only through the love and compassion of Susanne Wallner—a young, beautiful concentration camp survivor—that Hans is able to reconcile his traumatic past with a recovering Germany. His desire to avenge the innocent victims of a mass shooting on their “murderer,” Captain Ferdinand Brückner, is what drives most of the plot. This desire for justice presents Dr. Mertens with a dilemma: he can either yield to his compulsion to kill Captain Brückner himself or, more fortuitously, have him put on trial for his crime. Hans’s dilemma is essentially the people’s dilemma—the people, i.e., directly affected by the Second World War. With all the fighting done, it was only expected that several “murderers” were, in fact, “among [them]”—those murderers who managed to evade being prosecuted after the war. Aside from effectively capturing the dismal atmosphere of a berubbled Berlin, The Murderers Are Among Us urges members of the film’s audience, who may be in similar predicaments to Hans’s, not to take justice into their own hands; but rather, to leave justice up the the law. Order cannot be built upon chaos. And in 1946, when the world hung precariously on its war-worn thread, it was necessary that as much order as possible was maintained—especially in issues of crime and prosecution, which were then ubiquitous.

It is not surprising, therefore, to read that “the film was [originally] supposed to be named The Man I will kill and Mertens was supposed to succeed in killing Brückner, but the script and the title were changed because the Soviets were afraid that viewers could interpret that as a call for vigilante justice.” Staudte’s original intention to have Brückner killed in the film suggests the ‘‘people’s’’ inclination to avenge innocent war victims on their unprosecuted oppressors. The Soviets’ decision to alter the film’s conclusion, on the other hand, indicates the careful measures that were taken to counter vigilante justice. Interestingly enough, Mertens’s moral dilemma is itself present in the Soviet-Staudte effort to produce The Murderers Are Among Us, in that both of Mertens’s approaches to bring about justice are represented.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Original Gangsta (i.e. nicky) breaks from studies


                              I want Mary Kate hair.

Marie??! Ah Oui

What up?!

Gatico? Gatico!

oh Karl makin jokes



I have the same Sperrys. I know, bug the fuh out.

You better recognize

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Everything was burritos and nothing hurt.

There I was, sitting in front of 100 kids. 100 kids staring, 100 kids watching, 100 kids judging. I'm not good on the spot, and I knew this could only go one way. My was mouth getting dry, "I need water," I muttered to the seemingly unaffected girl sitting next to me, who made the most sincere face of utter confusion I have seen in response to my statement. How anyone would need something to aid them through this moment of complete calamity was beyond her. I, on the other hand, was desperate, but the boy before me began to talk, so to stand up and retrieve my water bottle that was just a few feet away, calling my name, telling me that if I just took a sip all my problems would go away, would be totally rude, not to mention they'd watch me, all 100 of them. I could only hear the boy droning away on his group. Who cares about what happened in your group! Don't you know I'm in crisis mode! My palms were getting sweaty, "come on Nix you can do this." I thought as I tried to muster as much saliva as possible. "All you have to do is say something, then the world will be saved and the hero gets the girl and everything will be burritos and nothing will hurt. Right?" Wrong. I don't know why my brain goes on strange rants while I'm in crisis mode, maybe that's why I'm not good at this stuff (a Zombie apocalypse probably wouldn't be the best scenario for me, but I digress.) I could hear my heart beating a million miles per hour, but can't everyone in times like this? So what did it matter? Well it mattered to me. I always say something stupid, that's how tall frizzy haired, Nicky's function, off stupid, and then the sudden urge to fester in a giant hole with French bulldog's named Louie the Frenchman, and cats named Nicky.

The thing is I wasn't just "sitting" waiting for my turn to say absolutely nothing. No. I was shafted, forced, almost hoodwinked into it. What kind of a professor does these things?! She said the facilitators of the groups didn't have to do anything but make sure the group does their job. I considered myself lucky, I didn't have to say anything, didn't have to do anything, I didn't even listen, just facilitate. I even told a girl to write notes, just to make sure I was doing my job, I got an eye roll from her! I suffered from being the reciprocator of an eye roll just to get my job done, wasn't that torture enough! Then Professor Evil said we have a special "surprise for the facilitators." Fuck. Fuck, fuck, fuck, fuck. I generally use profanity in moments of complete and utter doom. I had to tell the entire class what my group discussed, our dynamic, and way that we communicated( I know, I don't know why I'm taking this class either). The other facilitators had notes, I did not. The other facilitators talked for what seemed like hours about their totally awesome groups, and the super way they all discussed the prompt. I, on the other hand, said the word"stuff." Yes,  I said it: stuff. I'm supposed to be this kick ass college student discussing extra intellectual topics and yet I say stuff.

Sure it wasn't my worst stint at public speaking (I was once told I looked constipated during a class presentation, yup my prize moment), but it was still pretty horrifying, terrifying, ghastly; you choose the adjective. I thought once you got into college everything would become all collegey. You'd do things like find yourself and be an academic while still having a ridiculously awesome social life. Yet I see myself as the same frizzy haired nerd, spending all my time on studies to receive C's (bleh), and hanging out with the same two people I did in high school (although I'm definantly not complaining, they are my best friends). I'm not cut out for the collegey thing. Never have been. I find myself acting like a kid less than any adult I know, and the idea of doing adult things seems to be like an alternate universe where I have glossy hair and buy sweet heels on my free time.

But I guess in reality the hero needs to figure out somethings before he saves the girl. So for now nothing is burritos and everything hurts.

Friday, February 11, 2011


Based on Edith Wharton's novel.

Swan Lake and Anna Karenina

Thursday, February 10, 2011

"Good morning, Princess"

All I wanted to do was play hooky this morning, sleep until the afternoon, pretend I have nothing to do and do all of this nothing with you. When you said, “Good morning, Princess” you made it that much more tempting for me to stay in bed even though I was in jeans and had already gotten dressed. It didn’t help that it was so cold- frigid, just the way you like my nose, and that I knew waking up meant you’d be driving away, but with a warm kiss and those three little words, I knew I was ready for the rest of the world today. But now all I can do, with grogginess still behind my eyes and our love-shark by my side, is crawl back into the sheets and miss you and wait for you to come home. Mmm, how I love to sleep and dream about you and me.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Vapid Summaries of Two Tolstoy Novellas; A Note on Russian Names

Family Happiness (1859)

“We were in morning for my mother, who died in the autumn, and I spent all that winter alone in the country with Kátya and Sónya.” So Tolstoy begins his novella—with the desolation of a family death. The narrator is 17-year-old Máshechka Alexandróvna (Márya) reflecting on her past. She begins by informing us that her mother has died, and that she has temporarily returned to her old house, Pokróvkoe, with her younger sister Sónya and her old governess Kátya, until her guardian Sergéy Mikháylych can decide what course she and her sister should take. “The feeling of death clung to the house; the air was filled with grief and horror of death.” Márya falls in love with Sergéy. They marry, though she is considerably younger than him. At first the marriage runs smoothly, then ruptures, and finally cools.

The title "Family Happiness" refers to the only kind of long-lasting, substantial happiness that one should expect from a marriage. It is subdued and quiet. Passion always fades in a marriage, since passion is built upon mystery.

-Their relationship is brilliantly developed in that none of the developments seem artificial--everything happens naturally--there is little invention.

The Devil (1889)

I found the The Devil rather unimpressive—even upon a second reading. It is said that Tolstoy cached the draft of this story somewhere in the cushioned depths of his study chair, so that Sophia wouldn’t find it, and discover that he had been unfaithful to her. For this story, like all of Tolstoy’s stories, is largely autobiographical. It is the story of an “honest,” “kindly,” “agreeable,” “candid” man (Eugène Irténev) who is driven to madness by his lust for a peasant woman (Stepanída Péchnikov). We open to chapter one and read that “a brilliant career lay before Eugène Irténev.” Money is inherited, debts are paid off, services are begun in the ministry, and Eugène’s life seems very promising. However, being a bachelor, he is plagued by what he calls a “necessary” obligation to his health (i.e. copulation). To him, there is something emancipating about stifling his urges—it allows him to operate his father’s estate and farm with a clear mind. So, whenever he his urges arise, off he goes to the forest to ‘meet’ with Stepanída. Time passes, he marries a smart, bourgeois girl named Liza, and forgets about Stepanída. Later, however, he encounters her everywhere she goes. He is driven mad by his guilt and commits suicide—or, in an alternate ending, BAM!, kills Stepanída.

This story is unimpressive because it has no subtlety in its theme, construction, or symbolism… In both endings, someone dies—in the one where he shoots Stepanída, he is sentenced to 7 months in prison, and emerges a drunkard. Clearly, it is ‘wrong to give into lustful temptation.’ And we recall the gospel of Matthew:

[28] But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart.
[29] And if thy right eye offend thee, pluck it out, and cast it from thee: for it is profitable for thee that one of thy members should perish, and not that thy whole body should be cast into hell.
[30] And if thy right hand offend thee, cut if off, and cast it from thee: for it is profitable for thee that one of thy members should perish, and not that thy whole body should be cast into hell.

Religious imagery pervades: Stepanída red kerchief represents sin, passion, and temptation; the Forest in which he meets her, the garden of Eden.

The story is marked (Insipidly) by the changing seasons and (interestingly) by liturgical celebrations. Lent, marking the death of Eugène's indebted father and the ressurection of his farm under Eugène's control.

This is a parable, clearly, and that's why it's not to my taste.

A Note on Russian Names:
Russians have three names: their first name, their patronymic, and their surname. Tolstoy’s full name, for instance is

Lev (first name) Nikolaevich (patronymic) Tolstoy (surname).

The patronymic is based on the first name of a person's father, adding either a masculine (-vich or -ich) or feminine (-na) ending. Thus siblings (with the same father) will have the same patronymic.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Heavenly Creatures (1994)


On Rothko's No.3 / No.13

Went to the MoMA yesterday. Spotted this Rothko. Peered here and there. Set pen to paper.


No.3 / No.13

A parrot of a painting. We are drawn immediately to the twilight of the center zip—cool, crepuscular, merging cream into the profoundest purple—the deep purple of sleep, of death: a pool of nocturnal quiet. And yet how vivacious! bright coral, green grass: all pools of being. We are engulfed by the dreams, the jungles, the clouds of youth, to be deserted in the thickness of the night. We are dazzled, distracted, doomed. And a sense of foreboding—a deep, black denizen lingers above us, seeping into to the mind, blinding one, silencing one, gorging on the light.

Monday, January 31, 2011

Tolstoy Blogs

I'm undertaking a rather large university project on the life and fiction of L. Tolstoy, and I think it'd be a good idea to write a little about each of the pieces I'll be reading. My accounts/notes/reviews on his works will, I hope, be informative as blogs--and a reference for me to draw on when I write my papers at the end of the spring semester! To be expected for review:

Novels and Novellas:

Anna Karenina
Family Happiness
The Cossacks
The Devil
The Kreutzer Sonata
The Death of Ivan Ilych
Master and Man
Father Sergius
(Selected short stories)


Leo Tolstoy: A biography
A Confession
What I believe

Leo and Sophia Tolstoy

The Tolstoys

Tolstoy Reading

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Wyeth's Wind from the Sea


We would do best, perhaps, to let it breathe through us—to stand still as it roars through the window and floods into the room. After all, there’s something soothing about the way the wind rouses the curtains. It sends them splashing, pondering. And though we do not speak (being so enraptured) we feel it is the fin of an angel that kisses our cheeks, that balloons diaphanously in the gale. Brushing though the ochre—sweeping, whizzing, clashing, massing—the Wind from the Sea pours into the room, and one finds one’s soul ajar.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Cold Nostalgia

Midday rolling on the warm sandy shore
replaced by the frosty smoke of my early morning breaths.
A cold nostalgia reminds me that I left the place
where I could sprawl out on the sidewalk like a cat catching sun.
The sky seemed more blue on those arts and crafts days.

Valerio's Antiques is a Fraud

I urge you not to be fooled by their attractive, yet misleading, advertisement.

Her Majesty

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Flush: A Biography – 1931

Flush is a fun little project Woolf took on to refresh herself, after finishing her emotionally-draining novel The Waves. From roving across the sea-floor of consciousness—sousing and wading through the brown-mauve depths— to scampering about Regent’s Park and Florence—nosing, sniffing here and there, “where they beat brass, where they bake bread, where the women sit combing their hair, where the bird-cages are piled high on the cause way, where the wine spills itself in dark red stains on the pavement, where leather smells and harness and garlic, where cloth is beaten, where vine leaves tremble, where men sit and drink and spit and dice.” Thus is the Woolf devotee demanded to travel, when he endeavors to consider her works in the order of their births . Both The Waves and Flush: A Biography were published in 1931.


But you are probably puzzled as to why one must sniff all these curious things, if one reads Flush. Simply put, because the subject of Mrs. Woolf’s book is a dog—a cocker spaniel to be exact. His name is Flush. He is, however, no ordinary dog. He was the real-life pet of poets Elizabeth Barett and Robert Browning. Strictly speaking, Flush is a biography. The book follows the story of Flush’s life in Victorian England, providing glimpses into the lives of his poet-owners, too… This is the drollest little book.

Ellen Glasgow, in The New York Times Herald Tribune Books, calls it “a masterpiece…It is not fiction because it has the substance, the reality of truth. It is not Biography because it has the freedom, the artistry of fiction.”


Really, Virginia has done something quite revolutionary in making the subject of her biography Elizabeth Barett Browning’s cocker spaniel, Flush. We see all the events of the poetess’s life—courtship & marriage to Robert Browning & all—filtered through Flush’s canine sensibilities. And for quite some time, we are made to feel the things that dogs feel—their melancholy (when they are neglected), their rapture (when fields—moist, sunny, teeming with earthy aromas—beckon them to run about and play).

Perhaps what’s so interesting about this book is how Virginia is able to blend two genres as diverse as fiction and biography into a delightful composite that both informs and enchants. Woolf calls attention to Flush’s incredible intuition, suggesting that animals, although dumb and unable to verbalize their sensations, are remarkably sensitive creatures. Flush also satarizes the absurdities of English pretentiousness.


(Miss Elizabeth Barett Browning)

Butterscotch? Bizarre

A small block of butterscotch
sat tempting my tastebuds.
The flavor unknown made me
curious as a child
trifling through an adult scene.

The edges of the cube,
surprisingly smooth were
like ice. In my mouth it
melted just the same.

Butterscotch? Bizarre
- like a homeless transvestite.
Sweet, but tart, yes, a little
Tart she is. She's an impostor-
rich, creamy caramel, but not
all in the same.

Havana Noon

Sunshine delight is fading down
Past the palms they grew up by.
On the beach, silver water
Glistens. The wind whispers
Secrets from our past.

Didn't you know who your Grandfather
Was? An ancestral wallet with much deeper
Pockets explains the life you were meant to lead.
Refuge and revolution found their place,
Finding me life in a new nation.

It all feels much of the same: The
Palms and breeze, the sunshine
And seas that they waved to as
They said goodbye, now seem
To welcome me back every time.

But this life is new for us all.
We look for answers in the tobacco
Fields now half burned crispy on
A different shore. Havana afternoons
Are no one's delight anymore.

A Poem Is

A poem is a capsule
Buried deep for a time.
Written in it, every secret
Some with a rhyme.

A poem is a confession
To an anonymous priest.
Letting out the sins and silence
- One's own abominable beast.

But eventually it surfaces
Be it harsh or pure.
The secret sin gets out
Feelings honest and mature.

Inspired by: "A poem is a capsule where we wrap up our punishable secrets"- William Carlos Williams

Monday, January 10, 2011


You'd think college would be a total ball right? False. Don't get me wrong, its fun, but it can get pretty boring (really boring). Like today for example, see, I'm all revved up(first day of second semester an all), even woke up early to make my hair all cute and look like the doll that I am. I shamelessly jam out in my small car on the way to school, get to my first class at nine, totally fine. My professor looks like a vulcan (live long and prosper) which I'm totally into. I decide he's pretty awesome. Class ends. Time to explore, look for my other classes, you know, so I'm not totally late, when a stranger tells me he's a monk and that i need to give him five bucks for a book (true story, he told me I looked spiritual). Hell no. So I go on, I find my next class but then I feel like people know that I'm aimlessly walking around finding my classes so I retreat to the library for a nap(I barely slept the previous night) but instead I ended up busting out a book and chillin' until it's time to get to class. Read, read, time to leave. Alright so I hit up the elevator when low and behold I find a boy from middle school standing right there, I try to ignore him because I'm awkward and that's what awkward people do but he spots me (considering we were the only two people in a confined space it was inevitable). I do some awkward things we part and I'm off to class. In waiting for my professor I spotted a very handsome Argentinian boy ( or at least I hope he is Argentinian). We're in the class, my professor begins, and I'm totally bored.
What I did: doodle, pretend to listen, make love eyes at the Argentinian lover, then look out the window, pretend to listen, write something down, doodle, fall in love with cute boy with glasses reading a comic book, realize he's from this obnoxious all boys high school (because I'm a stalker and noticed he said hi to a obnoxious boy from the obnoxious high school), get sad for about a second, doodle, look out window, decide I hate boys who match their purple plaid shirts to their beanies, realize I hate most people, doodle, leave.
What I wanted to do: SLAM MY HEAD ON MY DESK,  loudly groan, then loudly sigh, then run.

Friday, January 7, 2011

Quick Opinions on Plath's The Bell Jar

A little disappointing as far as the story goes. Nevertheless, Plath’s prose is brilliant, honest, and sensitive. She has a knack for metaphor and simile and imagery. In short, I think she’s more of a poet than a novelist.

O, and her descriptions of avocados and mayonnaise-blanketed crabmeat; and blind, windowless, doorless corridors of despair; and suffocating bell jars is quite extraordinary!
I’m excited, though, to get copies of her poem collections, Ariel and The Colossus.

I enjoyed her writing style; I just found her story lacking.


Come on, guys. This girl's a poet...

(I think I've already sent this vedio to you, Nicole. But it's just so good.)

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

The Price We Pay

Mother always said the best things in life aren't free
These bananas don't come cheap.
The red on your shoes
Replaced father's booze.
A needle and thread
Keep you warm in your bed
As does the licking flame of your candle
Which won't burn your hand because of its handle.
The best things in life aren't free
So we must pay for everything.