What a waste, I could’ve been your lover
What a waste, I could’ve been your friend
Perfect love is like a blossom that fades so quick
When it’s blowing up a storm in May
Travel south until your skin turns warmer
Travel south until your skin turns brown
Put a language in your head and get on a train
And then come back to the one you love
Yeah you’re great, you’re just part of this lifetime of dreaming
That extends to the heart of this long summer feeling
Quiet night, you see the TV’s glowing
Quiet night, you hear the walls are awake
Being you I’m getting out of a party crowd
Can I see what’s underneath your bed?
Can I stay until the milkman’s working?
Can I stay until the café awakes?
Little Lou, Ugly Jack, Prophet John -Belle and Sebastian (ft. Norah Jones)
It’s been storming here like crazy and while the rest of the city might be pissed off about it, I secretly love it. Sure, it’s gross having to hop around huge puddles and have a mixture of acidic rain water and street grime splashed onto your feet. But there’s also something beautiful about a city in the rain that I can’t quite put my finger on. I have this idea that noises become subdued, lights become more mellow around the edges.
Last night, I met up with Bijan for the first time in two years, and it was like nothing had changed. We sat in a little Parisian inspired café and listened to this three-piece jazz group while the rain poured outside and we nursed glasses of wine. We were the last people in the restaurants and we stood outside smoking cigarettes while standing under his umbrella as the restaurant closed up. After the depressing conversation we had inside about the state of journalism and fashion, about making it in New York, I clutched his shoulders at one point and said, “Please tell me that I’ll be okay!”
So far, it’s hard for me to write about my experiences here if only because on any given day there is so much to process. There is so much stimulation. You can be inside one building standing next to a guy in an Hermes suit at one minute and then step outside and have to walk around a man trying to sell magnets on the side of the street, his clothes too baggy on his frail little frame.
It’s all here, in this city. How do I even begin to write about it at all?
I’ve got to tell you
how I love you always
I think of it on grey
mornings with death
in my mouth the tea
is never hot enough
then and the cigarette
dry the maroon robe
chills me I need you
and look out the window
at the noiseless snow
At night on the dock
the buses glow like
clouds and I am lonely
thinking of flutes
I miss you always
when I go to the beach
the sand is wet with
tears that seem mine
although I never weep
and hold you in my
heart with a very real
humor you’d be proud of
the parking lot is
crowded and I stand
rattling my keys the car
is empty as a bicycle
what are you doing now
where did you eat your
lunch and were there
lots of anchovies it
is difficult to think
of you without me in
the sentence you depress
me when you are alone
Last night the stars
were numerous and today
snow is their calling
card I’ll not be cordial
there is nothing that
distracts me music is
only a crossword puzzle
do you know how it is
when you are the only
passenger if there is a
place further from me
I beg you do not go
Notes from today that I took on my iPhone
1) My plane is flying somewhere between Phoenix and Charlotte. To my left there is a great expanse of sky, infinite, nuanced, forever. Below, a landscape dominated by a seemingly endless river, which swells in certain places and then collapses into little rivulets and streams.
I have always loved dusk. But up here, tens of thousands of feet (but only a handful of miles) in the air—up here you can see how the late day’s light diffuses amidst a vast expanse of clouds—sheets of light pink, gold, and silver, the palest blue, vermilion. The distinction between what is light and what is cloud blurs, creating instead something else. Some other substance or material that transcends any word or feeling that keeps us rooted to the ground, to the banal, to the base.
I’m reminded of Vonnegut’s quote, “If this isn’t nice, I don’t know what is.” And it is up here that I a feel an infinite sense of gratitude for the human invention that could give me this view, this horizon, this particular dusk.
2) I’m finally feeling that same sense of excitement I have felt when a plane has taken me to new places. That is the thing about excitement. One equates it with giddiness, energy. But perhaps it is also a quiet sense of contentment—when looking out at the trees and green fields that make up a new landscape, tiny dots of light standing up as a last defense against the encroaching dark of evening, mist shrouding this view so that all the concretes become blurred, beautiful, palatable. And then in the distance, a blood moon, bright orange and perfectly circular hanging in the sky alone.
3) The Statue of Liberty peaking out at the bottom of my airplane window, lit up, welcoming me home.
Tomorrow I am embarking on the ultimate 20-something cliché, which is moving to New York! And looking for a job! And being poor! And crashing with friends! And sleeping on floors!
Despite this, and my overwhelming fear of turning out a loser (loser loser double loser), I am still excited to learn, to hustle, to meet new people. Opportunities await. Long nights that turn into wee mornings will be had. I will dance. I will cry. I will write (a lot of that). I will really try to see, and I will really try to feel it all. And I am hoping that at the end of it all—though, who knows when that will be—I will be the better for it.
I have this theory that the reason so many photos get unsourced from the original photographer, is no one likes to think that the image they are looking at exists outside the confines of the his or her own fantasy.
But then the problem is: all these images (you know, of the nice white apartment with the mid-century furniture and plants; the guy with the beard; the woman with the tasteful tattoos)—all of these images are just fantasy anyway.
Advertising companies don’t need to try and sell us shit anymore. We just try to sell it all to each other anyway.
shouts to all the band kids who worked really hard to master an instrument in high school and double shouts to the ones who wore goofy outfits and did it in choreographed steps like seriously that sounds outrageously difficult like poaching a perfect egg but yeah denny’s has yr backs and you’re welcome in our humble diners after any and every recital, concert, home game, et al.
here is what I think easy moments of love are: I think it’s when you look at a photo of a place and want to travel there with that person, when you listen to a song that moves you or makes you want to dance, wanting to hand that song off to that person. when you look at a painting that steals your breath (captivating you for a few minutes, but all the same making you feel a lifetimes-worth) you want to grab that person by the hand and say “look, do you see what I see? let me share it with you.” easy moments of love are when we are walking down some side street in Paris, or some wide avenue in Chicago, and walking and living, seeing and hand clasping feel so pure and safe and right. easy moments of love are in the kitchen, when we are fucking up but trying our best. they are at the dining room table, long after the street lights have turned on and the sun has settled.
here is what I think difficult moments of love are: it is when that person confesses to you a deep fear and entrusts you not to harm him or her with it. it is when you realize that pain isn’t merely felt, it becomes carved into our faces, etched into the timbre of our voices. sometimes it is giving up. sometimes it is letting go.