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Saturday, December 18, 2004

important things in the waking world

I'm still getting over that bar with all your friends,
lying here in pajamas
and stretched upwards,
cradling my head
and I'm trying to hold onto
my dream. You said we all

sleep fetuslike. In my dream
I was a fetus, when we all went to
a bar and brought us our orders.
I was the one who had the embryotic fluid.
They set an egg in front of me. Last
night, I dreamed I was guest-starring
on Buffy.

i feel like the intersection of
all the matthues, a lonely desert
crossroads of two long highways.
But I'm just the crossroads itself:
no length, no depth, just a small
inclusion of substance.

I'm wearing my pajamas. I barely
ever wear my pajamas to bed
anymore: they're for entertaining,
not sleep. People keep intruding on my
night-time. No lights out for me.
Now, when I fall asleep I'm always
naked, half-undressed, or changing.

And my hair is getting longer. I can
already hide my eyes in it, like
a pillow I carry around during
the day. The fluffy back of my head,
like goose feathers, something
to keep me warm in winter.
Keep me warm in winter.

Last night I dreamt you were Buffy,
the vampire slayer, and I was a friend
of your friends', Willow's internet
pen-pal. I was your love-interest
for the season. I tried to read the
lines so we'd be friends, so we'd never
start kissing. I liked your friends, I
knew them so well, how Xander would
flinch and Willow would clap like a girl when
you killed vampires.

I've always been out in the cold,
known so many gangs but never worked
with anyone. When the wind comes, I go
into fetal position, living off my
own warmth. When we go to restaurants
I forget to bring my own food and I listen
to my stomach growl, thinking perhaps
that I'm digesting my own fat, in
the absence of kosher food, living off myself
until something better comes along.

And I don't say much when your friends
talk, I like to listen
and think of our bar-nights like episodes.

Thursday, August 19, 2004


i never treasure quarters anywhere so much as new york, where one of those silver discs will buy you a bag of potato chips, pretzels, rippled Dipsy Doodle corn chips or, occasionally, even weirder fare. party mix is what i eat (constantly, constantly) when i write. tonight, erez and i both stacked up on day-glo orange spiral things, grabbed some Tastykakes as dessert, and sped off toward the brooklyn memorial highway.

we sat on this little catwalk by the river, stared at manhattan across the water, and watched it sparkle back at us. erez was curled up against the metal gate and my feet dangled over, scraping the water like teeth and nails.

presently the police came and took our IDs, walked around with flashlights and looked at us sternly for trespassing on city property. the people on the other end of the pier kept insisting that they lived here, only they'd never changed their drivers' licenses. at the time it seemed like the absolute dumbest thing in the world. eventually they waved us away, handed us back our licenses and told us they were letting us off with a warning. they looked like nice guys, honest, just tired. we could relate.

then we drove down the road, to the actual park, where the water was right up against us. glittering boulders got smaller and smaller and ran right into the water. a bunch of punk rock kids sat on the rocks, swilling 40s and combing their mohawks. i thought of hava, sneaking out after hours to visit them.

i'm in new york. it's always felt a little bit like a nightmare and a little like a dream. it's never felt like home. but now?

we've got a book in common, baby.

i'm learning yiddish from children's picture books about the Vilna Gaon. wish me luck.

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