debate

Staring out the window of an eleventh-floor conference room. Beyond glossy tables topped with glasses of water, the sun sets over Melbourne. She never looks the same. Skyline always seems to change. Haven’t been here long enough to recognize what was, let alone how it becomes. Alas, I distract. Watching red and white pass, to and from flowers and the hive. In a split moment, into those lights, I feel detached from this life. Will anything we say here translate there? What to make of a tower. Bathing in philosophy while people without water. Sliced by fences. Strip-searched of rights. In here, few cushioned. Sipping. Talking, thinking, reading, and writing. Arranging thoughts, growing fields. Sometimes I wonder what I’m doing here. I mustn’t belong. Not—able—enough. But who is to say who gets to stay? An amniotic slip, gasping for air. Between pockets of meaning and earning. Where are they going? Home to families or alone in boxes. Nowhere and everywhere, staring into a screen, just like me. That space I crave, pushing every him away. Curling “Learn Spanish and Leave” into the margin. Not complaining, just debating. What a fucking gift: to be a student. But what’s the point trying to hold a line? Seeking a PhD? Injecting Latin. Punctuating rationality and morality. The letters and numbers don’t add up. An insufficient balance = halted reach. Or can it seep from seats into policies? Alter the next for this planet. Where’s the ripple? Bouncing on a grid, sliding through that divine intersect, I giggle. Prefer poetry. But isn’t it all when the last petals fall?

2018 input

Books read:

  • Devotion by Patti Smith
  • Dreams of a Spirit-Seer by Immanuel Kant
  • Food of the Gods by Terence McKenna
  • Ongoingness: The End of a Diary by Sarah Manguso
  • Men Explain Things To Me by Rebecca Solnit
  • Anecdotal Theory by Jane Gallop
  • One Hundred Years of Solitude by Gabriel García Márquez
  • Island by Aldous Huxley
  • The Myth of Matriarchal Prehistory: Why an Invented Past Won’t Give Women a Future by Cynthia Eller
  • Go Tell It On the Mountain by James Baldwin
  • The Teachings of Don Juan: A Yaqui Way of Knowledge by Carlos Castaneda
  • The Woman Destroyed by Simone de Beauvoir
  • The White Album by Joan Didion
  • The Emperor Wears No Clothes by Jack Herer
  • Anthropocene Feminism edited by Richard Grusin
  • Our Right To Drugs by Thomas Szasz
  • Regarding the Pain of Others by Susan Sontag
  • A Wave in the Mind by Ursula K. Le Guin
  • And the Pursuit of Happiness by Maira Kalman
  • A Musical Hell by Alejandra Pizarnik

P.S. I didn’t do this last year, so here’s my books read in 2017. All still adore.

2017 list:

  • Blindness by Jose Saramago
  • The Year of Magical Thinking by Joan Didion
  • The Age of Reason by Jean-Paul Sartre
  • The Cosmic Serpent by Jeremy Narby
  • Notes from Underground by Fyodor Dostoevsky
  • The Meek One by Fyodor Dostoevsky
  • Hallucinations by Oliver Sacks
  • White Girls by Hilton Als
  • The Art of Losing Control by Jules Evans
  • Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott
  • We Should All Be Feminists by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie
  • You Found a Beating Heart by Nisha Bhakaa
  • Supernatural by Graham Hancock
  • The Psychedelic Experience by Leary, Metzner, and Alpert (Dass)
  • Be Here Now by Ram Dass
  • Letters to a Young Poet by Rainer Maria Rilke
  • The Divine Art of Dying by Karen Speerstra and Herbert Anderson
  • Infectious Madness by Harriet Washington
  • A Room of One’s Own by Virginia Woolf
  • Future Sex by Emily Witt
  • The Joyous Cosmology by Alan Watts
  • Homegoing by Yaa Gyasi
  • Just Kids by Patti Smith