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Don't worry Jalina, I won't tell.

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Code Purple

I have a weakness for lilacs and April is a much-loved month for many reasons but perhaps the best or at least the best-smelling reason is they are finally, if briefly, in season.  I am not and have never really been, in any other sense, the kind of woman who buys flowers.  But when I lived in New York City I used to walk to work through the West Village and SoHo, and that meant passing all the lovely corner delis with their walls of flowers, and somehow I fell in love with the lilacs...  I would buy them by the armload on my way to work and then have them dripping with extravagant, resigned grace over my desk.  Deflowering over the course of my workday into the keyboard of the IBM Thinkpad T20 upon which I built content management systems for Fortune 500 companies.

I want to say it was like a sewing machine and an umbrella on an operating table.  But it wasn’t.  Not quite.

[nightingaleshiraz] [?]
[Santo Spirito, Firenze]
[lunedì 29 aprile 2019 ore 17:26:00] []

Kun, fayakūn.

Learning this morning, that listening on one’s earphones to Galway Kinnell—to the sibilant whistle of what seems to be every other line of his that ends in an S...  It is, how to say it?  DiStreSSingly unpleaSant.

Still.  There is this:

                                         I want to lie out
on my back under the thousand stars and think
my way up among them, through them,
and a little distance past them, and attain
a moment of absolute ignorance,
if I can, if human mentality lets us.
I have always intended to live forever;
but not until now, to live now.

And this:

                               Laughter is our stuttering
in a language we can’t speak yet. Behind,
the world made of wishes goes dark. Ahead,
if not now then never, shines what is.

[nightingaleshiraz] [?]
[Santo Spirito, Firenze]
[martedì 23 aprile 2019 ore 09:05:01] []

All the characteristics of a human being...

Bret Easton Ellis makes me feel like we’ve been using the phrase “devil’s advocate” all wrong, all this time.  Most people don’t play “devil’s advocate.”  What they actually play is “underdog’s advocate.”

But Ellis.  Now there’s an example of the real deal.

[nightingaleshiraz] [?]
[Santo Spirito, Firenze]
[lunedì 22 aprile 2019 ore 20:03:12] []


I don’t even have to watch a video replay.  I don’t even have to click through.  I just have to read the hyperlinked text that says, “WATCH: Moment spire fell.”  And I am brought down.

It is not a familiar feeling, not exactly.  You don’t get used to it.  It’s just.  It never went away.  If you watched something like that, something massive both metaphorically and otherwise, something that feels like the very undertow of something important...  If you watched it fall or shatter or detonate, dissolve or crumble or disintegrate, like a broken heart by Suheir Hammad...  Then you are always a held half-breath away from that other Tuesday morning moment, that spot on the intersection of Spring and West Broadway.  Your whole life you are there.

The thing is—there are many things, but this is one of them.  The thing is you can’t call what you did watching.  Watching is what you do with a movie.  With a friend taking a first bite.  With a woman stepping out of a coat.  This you do not watch.

What is it that I did then?  I have not figured it out.  All these years I’m still doing it, in my mind’s eye, come dreams and days like this one.  But I have not figured it out.

[nightingaleshiraz] [?]
[Santo Spirito, Firenze]
[martedì 16 aprile 2019 ore 11:54:22] []


Today’s poem of the day is W.S. Merwin’s “Separation.”

It’s three lines long.  And all three lines I know by heart.  Because it was maybe (but maybe in that way that is enough), the first poem a boy ever gave me.  In that way that people give each other things when they are in love for the first time, and it feels like it too.

[nightingaleshiraz] [?]
[Santo Spirito, Firenze]
[sabato 06 aprile 2019 ore 16:04:28] []


Two.  There are two of them.

You know Florence.  Some days.  You feel almost human.

[nightingaleshiraz] [?]
[Santo Spirito, Firenze]
[mercoledì 03 aprile 2019 ore 12:46:13] []

Sound Mind

This morning I’m thinking of what the art critic Jerry Saltz said in The Price of Everything:

Artists have to make an enemy of envy.  They must do this or it will eat them alive.

Or at least I was.  For most of the last two hours instead, I have been thinking about making an enemy of this motherfucking bitch of a jackhammer.

[nightingaleshiraz] [?]
[Santo Spirito, Firenze]
[mercoledì 03 aprile 2019 ore 11:26:60] []