A short film I made with footage taken in California, Philadelphia, Texas and New York.
A short film I made with footage taken in California, Philadelphia, Texas and New York.
Sometimes I don’t really know what to write, and then I think oh, you shouldn’t write for the sake of writing, you should write because–because you’re trying to write something. Because you’re trying to convey something. Because there’s a story you have to tell, a thought to flesh out, a destination to get to. You’re driving your point home.
But I don’t always have a point or a story or destination. And then I remember how I used to squirrel away hours just stabbing down words, stringing together sentences, writing whatever I wanted just because. Because it was fun and it made me happy and I didn’t really care if people read it or loved it or hated it. It was like rubbing on unscented lotion. It’s therapeutic, no one really knows you’re wearing it, and it’s something you do for yourself. You’re not trying to leave behind little scent fragments of yourself. You’re just doin’ you.
And I like how writing’s an avenue to sort things out. It’s like talking through a problem, but writing through ideas instead. I’ll start off with a nebulous idea of what I’m going for, or something I’m trying to get out and by the end of, oh, five or ten pages, I’ll have come to some conclusion. That, or at least have reached greater clarity on something than I would’ve if I hadn’t written it at all. Thinking is thinking: chaotic and constant. Feeling is feeling: sometimes uncontrollable and inexplicable and discomforting. Writing’s sorting through that. If my head were a tree raining varied thought-leaves, then writing’s my little rake.
At 2 in the morning I’m never quite sure of what I’m doing anymore or what this is except that it feels a little like madness and I’m hell-bent on creating.
But it does not/will not/cannot replace the voltage you feel at 5 in the morning when you’re inching along and it suddenly dawns upon you: this fits. Collapse in tired happiness and make poetry out of it in the morning. (Hearts handing out little paper milk cartons that read MISSING.)
In the cosmic blink of an eye we will be gone; in the cosmic flutter of a lash we’ll fall in love. With definitions and coppery fingers–with catchy songs and awful hope. With deviant behaviors and dreaming awake. With rain and shadows that you skip-skip-skip through because you’re too busy, too busy, too busy dreaming in hollowness.
In the sticky hot summers of childhood, we’d return from Friday trips to frozen tubed popsicles, sprawl out under the tree and tear at them.
We’d wear our light blue shirts and jean shorts and go all sorts of places. Like the pizza buffet with the globby cinnamon buns, or nickel-arcade with the Austin Powers game, or the mall, where we’d be chaperoned by older children paying to be there (which I always found ironic…)
Chocolate sundaes–like the one above–played a less nostalgic role in my life; I think I’d only just had my first a few years ago. (And then a few days ago) I welcomed the treat anyways.
3.8.18 | Daily Art
A few nights ago we got dinner at the place downstairs, beneath my spinach green carpet and mini Whirlpool fridge that hums at 4 in the morning. I did a little of my own fortune-telling.
You will have two sons, both of them gingers, because it turns out you have a recessive ginger gene. Also, your living room will have dark hardwood flooring.
Our fortune cookies came back, beige Americanized cookies of socioeconomic survival. They went a little something like this: it takes guts to get out of the ruts. And: keep your future plans secret for now.
Sounded about right. A few weeks ago, she’d ordered glasses online from a holy religious-affiliated shop online. The lenses came back with scripture on the sides. A sign, she said.
It’s the 16th of March. On the leftmost side of the street, where the police lights blinked and a ominous sideways bike lay, I freaked. It’s already halfway through March. Your birthday is next week. Wednesday, right? Numbers come shooting in my email. These percentages are startling. They’re trying to do the opposite of imposing pressure, but it’s still pressure imposed.
It’s still cold. In March. And I miss the summertime.
I miss our roadtrip. I miss visiting Six Flags.
I miss nibbling on overpriced funnel cake, with strawberries and slightly deflated whipped cream. I miss riding the seemingly nightmarish rollercoaster with the loops and new steel and rickety rockity crawl three times in a row.
I miss traipsing across the park twice, three times, through worlds and lines and ropes and cartoons. I miss the way summer clung to our faces, heady and exhilarated.
Stretch of road, tire on gravel, a girl in heels shamelessly belting 90’s R&B. The noises start to meld together. Concrete becomes water. Wind turns into rain. Rubber curls into oil. Then the occasional lull: a red light, early hours in the moment. The occasional siren: burglar! And the occasional presence of the stranger boy, with the unevenly long hair and dusty grey hat.
We used to meander around aimlessly the city. It wasn’t romantic, but a romantic idea, one of lostness and freeness and direction-less-ness that, when played off right, seemed so alive. The sky was the limit; there were no limits, but of course there were limits. It just never felt it at the time.
Grasping for straws—striped plastic straws. Grasping for hair. Grasping the neck of a bottle. Grasping my hand. Grasping the concept of centripetal motion, that adding up countless angles equates to a circle. Grasping the notion of love, the many forms of love.
In thinking about it, it’s been a while since I wrote my last journal entry.
Nearly a month’s passed. February went in the blink of an eye. Cliche, I know, but accurate. I shut my eyes halfway, half the month passed, and by the time I looked up, it was over. My memory’s shot. I don’t remember much from the month, other than the fact that I started it off at my best friend’s house, we went to a club, and I slept over for practically a week. It ended with her as well, the two of us eating Thai spring rolls and talking about our relationships (ha, ha).
The start of March involved dodging snow storms, hurtling myself into the sky, into luck and sunshine, to the sound of cicadas in the backyard. I vowed not to check my email, so I didn’t. I vowed not to touch any assignments, which I didn’t. I vowed not to work, which I didn’t. Which meant that I missed a couple o’ things… and wrote a 10 page paper the evening it was due… and was clueless for two days. It’s okay, though, having a break entirely free of responsibilities was #worth.
I feel bad that I’ve been throwing out so many brief little one-liners the past two months.
I was looking for some old posts earlier today and realized what a deluge of one-two-three sentence art posts I’ve been throwing up lately. Like, these tight-lipped, brief posts, which are so…sparse compared to before. I did initially start a blog to write….but it’s sort of evolved as an online outlet for whatever creative tornado hijacks over.
Has it been writer’s…block? Laziness? The need for a…break? Maybe a combination of all three.
But, of course, I can change that, I can uncurl myself from whatever corner I’m huddled in, all afraid to write. I’ll stick to making sure there’s something new every Thursday and Sunday. I’ll push myself to use WP’s Daily Post prompts as fodder for ideas, and combine that with my art posts, or use the space for journal entries, as I am now. Something like that.
3.5, 3.6, and 3.7.18 | Daily Art
Oh, but I didn’t mean it that literally.
Here are the first few (read: 50) scenes from a digital stop motion I’ve been working on. I’m taking my first design class this year–first ever! right, I know, it’s about that time. Each of the classes are 3 hours long, twice a week, so that totals up to 6 hours a week. Which, admittedly, I was apprehensive about. Turns out my apprehension was all for naught, because after every class, I’m wishing I had more time to work on our pieces.
Sitting around working on our art also warmly harkens back to the good ol’ days of mandatory art class. I’d sit with some friends and paint nonsensical artworks I’d never turn in. Honestly, I hated school, but if there was one chunk of time I enjoyed every other day, it was art class.
And stop motions, albeit tedious, are fun to make. Although some people illustrated their animations, I opted for stop-motion. There’s always been something about stop-motion that’s reeled me in…as a 10 year old, I’d make flip books of dancing stick figures, stop-motion style.
2.28.18 | Daily Art
There’s the sound of cicadas, humming and dancing and singing to warmth. Throaty chirps abuzz in harmony, orchestra of din: the symphony of summer. Below the snaking branches and muttering cicadas is a small person! eyes wide and filled with wonder.
Eyes wide and filled with wonder, and maybe nostalgia, too, for muggy days and buzzing nights. Because cicadas are warm June days, broken shells left behind on beige garage doors, sweat sticking to the backs of our legs, taco shops circled once, twice, seven times around the city.