~One afternoon, when I was four years
old, my father came home, and he found me in the living room in front of a
roaring fire, which made him very angry. Because we didn’t have a fireplace.—Victor
The truth is…
I get a little wild
when I discover something I like. I get
a little fanatical, excessive, extreme, giggly, hot.
For example, I can’t
merely say ’I love you.’ I must say– I
loooove you more than the universe and the moon and the sun and pink cotton
candy and melted dove chocolate.
I can’t only watch one episode of Sex and the City, Call The
Midwife, or Parenthood, I need to watch
all of them at one sitting while the supper burns, the muse screams, and the cats starve from lack of Meow Mix.
It’s all a bit over-dramatic, but I can literally feel my
insides doing back flips, my pulse pulsating, my blood flowing thicker.
When I like…I like BIG.
Writing. Words like epiphany and illumination.
Foreign films. New shades of lipstick. Elizabeth Berg essays. Nabokov.
Simmering brown sugar. Cutting celery for stuffing. Baking chocolate
chip cookies. Big cats. Striped cats. Long tailed cats. Dry red wine. My soul
sister. Sushi overflowing with ginger. Old women who smell like Tigress & Emerald
perfume. Mandarin poppies blowing in wind. Meryl Streep. A River Runs Thru It. The beat movement
I once wrote to Robert Bly gushing, “I loooove you. Your poems seep into my bones like sugary
maple syrup.” I added “I’m not a
stalker, but I love you more than pink
cotton candy. What was Sylvia Plath like?”
Not only did he write back, but he sent me two volumes of
his newest (subscribed) books of poetry.
I guess gushing like a pathetic school girl worked. (this
One thing people may not know about me is that I stutter. Sometimes I need to change a word mid sentence
because I cannot say it, or I write it
down so I can read it.
I need to slow down. I
need to breathe. Inhale. Exhale.
Become all Zen.
This is the way I
This is also one of the reasons I started writing.
You see, I have an abundance of words inside, stories
inside, something not yet spoken inside.
My body physically reacts to words.
For instance, I’m lit on fire by Li Young-Lee’s poem, Blossoms.
This, oh-yes, this, makes
my organs burn up.
to take what we love inside,
carry within us an orchard, to eat
only the skin, but the shade,
only the sugar, but the days, to hold
fruit in our hands, adore it, then bite into
round jubilance of peach.***
–Darling, Readers, What
makes you burn inside?
~As if you were on
fire from within. The moon lives in the lining of your skin—Pablo Neruda