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Corrina Bain

[ website | Corrina bain. Writing and performannce. ]
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Uhhhhh, somehow still doing this, ok. 1,2,3/30 2016 [05 Apr 2016|05:14pm]
Sometimes the oracle is the blue witch. Her hair strangling in my arteries, twisted midnight through the enclave ventricle. Making my body her shadow her church. Every break in the skin lines up here, her defense, a moat. And she is in her cloak of thunder. Her eyes, obsidian, antimatter pulling up from the root. And she is older than the world, this thing in me that says I should be dead. I should be dead, the crater gorgons, my eyes, are unanimous, and so’s the dripping fleshpeak out from under my shirt, and my nails which grow and grow, and way my eyes show up in other people’s heads, unprotected animals, capillary explosion, raw as a skinned mink.

And sometimes the oracle is the man I did not give spare change to, because he asked in one of those moments when yes, I was eating, but my heart was thin, was a scarce beast. And I said no, and he said- do you get any blessings? And I said, “what? And he said, Blessings? You don’t know what blessings are. From Jesus, the man upstairs. And I said, oh, blessings. Yes. Yes every day. And he said, I don’t see how—because you never give anything, and then he walked out cursing.

And sometimes the oracle is the woman in her 20s moving into a penthouse apartment in Manhattan who hires me to set up a bed, but the bed is some ikea trash that she has lost parts for in the move and banged around and she’s watching me flail and reach and slide around the parts of aluminium and criticizing me for bringing the wrong tools. And her sepia eyeliner and mostly gone glass of red wine, while she’s watching my shaking hands try to get a machine screw in a stripped and non-obvious hole.

So the universe has conspired to make me live, right? I can see that. And I know I should forgive what is planted all around me, in the light of that, that nothing entirely takes it away. But there is still the ugly, blood-bloated moon raising up in the blue witch’s hand. Bedbugs. Debt. My unvisited body. The force that is less strong than the world, but which is only my own, and says to end it. now. Here.

My father’s setting up the projector. Decluttering. Which slides are worth keeping? Pictures of his parents. Of Liberia. Him as a boy. And listen, I want none of it. Not the crabapple tree bent in the back yard whispering I’m sorry, or how my child legs folded double with the silk kiss of perfect cartilage, there is nothing I wouldn’t trade, now, to have my history clear from everyone’s mind, a puff of smoke, so I could finish it, the warm salt of the horizon inside my body wanting to come out, a film with no sound. Inside the slideshow frame, suddenly, a pageant queen, wasp-waisted, elbow gloved, updone, porcelain, the woman my father never found, the one who would make him happy. I mean, he flips again, the slide carousel hits an empty frame, white light pouring through the retina, everything vanishes, she’s escaped. I remember her now. While I’m sisxteen & superficially wounding myself in a bathtub she’s reciting state capitals, baking secrets, the silk whisper of her sash and crinoline. It’s 2016, it seems like she would be different, a cam girl, pornographic ad for expensive shoes, but somehow she’s stayed just the same, a ray of sunlight cutting itself in half against her pencil skirt. You see the way she looks above your head, reciting answers into the space above the audience? You see how she thinks she has done everything right? This is what I mean, that even when I don’t want to kill the rest of me, there’s this temptation. To cover her in blood.

in heaven it is August. I am 12. The rain is coming down in sheets, hissing on the hot sidewalk, the lawns soft and thirsty, my hair pouring like watersnakes down my back, my skin a newborn tongue, there is a boy I think I like and I am pulled at the idea of him not knowing I exist, a new sweet ache I do not recognize is my father’s. I’ve never been on a diet. I don’t know I have a false claim to supremacy that murders people I can’t see while I am sleeping or waking or eating pizza rolls. The man who will hurt me hasn’t met me yet, I’m barely a need itching the back of his mind, barely an idea. In heaven my parents aren’t there and I don’t think of them. I haven’t been raped by a man living inside a man I was trying to love. I haven’t been lectured by someone’s drunk boyfriend about how difficult it is for sexual assault survivors to come forward. I haven’t begun to have an odor at the edges of my body like garbage and semen that does not wash away. I haven’t washed everything I own five times only to have the bedbugs keep pulling small strawberry rashes out of my skin. I haven’t run out of money in the greatest city in the world, the ulcerated rat in a kingdom of chandeliers. No. Not in heaven. There, my life has not happened. I am a child. I am forgivable. When my hands shake, it is for joy.
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10-12/30 i swear to god i'm still in it [21 Apr 2015|12:31am]
I see a friend after months and months
in a room where people are reading poems
and he tells me, whispery side of the mouth,
about his lover who died. We go outside,
the bright air, out of step, he tells me
how he hasn’t had this, before, how he can’t
stand that it was the body the body the body that
dies, through which he had learned an ease
and glory and even absolution from the knit
of tensile cells, the living skin, a hive
of hard blood going where it’s willed,
he misses the body and I don’t think it sounds
ignoble or shallow, I don’t think he’s wrong
for that, for wanting back what’s been destroyed,
and I think about my own small shade of grief,
that you don’t want me anymore, and how you thought
I should be ashamed that loving you was
wanting you, the wide chorus of your body
waiting for the admixture of apology and celebration
that is my mouth, and do I have to be wrong for that?
Obsessive, you said, do I have to be wrong
on the mere technicality that I always am,
wrong to love the half-rot smell of your sweat,
your birdcage hands spanning my ribs, and you said
you wanted it to be fun and you said
you weren’t interested in sex as therapy
and all the arms fell off of the god
inside me, all the tongues falling out
of my head only not really because, the body, you see,
I am still at least alive, and I wish you cared
about it, the body, the other one, mine, scratch
scratch with my housekey across my wrist
on the walk home and no one sees, no one
to notice the pink yelp and fine grains of blood
that form and wash away. And remember
when you held me and asked if I would think about you
when you were dead, and then when I tried to make love
with you, how you went away inside your body
like it was some luxury machine that was being
lent to me, and there I was, astride you, wailing,
the child again in front of the television
instead of being embraced

I am trying to be non-violent towards myself. I vomit an amethyst self-help book as I say that. But it keeps happening, the haunting distance between myself and the world, which makes me want to see my blood and make it run, & it’s mostly a vague social idea of maturity that prevents me. Each day has it’s quorum, its fleet of worms. I wish I were prevented by the belief, which I find laid out everywhere, that what we do we do to the world, we do to the whole of us and everyone, that pain is without boundary, without limit or measure spanning between and across us like magic. So I am trying, FUCK THIS to be nicer to me, which it seems is a corridor of fear, if I go unpunished, what happens. I am reading letter from a Birmingham jail and Audre Lorde’s essays, and it’s there, even if they did not do everything in their legend, they did not murder their assailants, and not because they were, though they were, outnumbered, but because in the face of violence, nonviolence becomes the radical choice, becomes the only counterweight, because to match it with violence means even if you win, you haven’t won, you’ve become them. And don’t I want to be them? The love of my teenaged years with the gold sword of his tongue down the throat of every girl, don’t I want to be them, the ones making maps of disease from within glass-sheilded offices? Fine, I want to be them, but I’m not. I’m here, on the side of the living. So this is my new task, to live to be not-them, to not live in their service, to try, at least, to take the knife from my own hand

the last time we talk is the last time
we talk and I finally explain how
your offhand cruelty hurts me, the bitch voice
you use on waitstaff, your running commentary
over the bodies and actions of each passer-by,
your ethnic eye with it’s proud precision,
like each one is a butterfly you can keep in glass.
I tell you it hurts me not just because it’s overstimulating
or silly, or because I am afraid of being seen
with the same eyes, but because
this is what I learned in quote-unquote recovery, that the only way
I can want to be alive is to be a part of life, to let the world
be what it is, and see the way my own ungrace, my own self-murder,
is reflected all around me. I have had to lay down my arms
in the private, futile war with life. And I’ve said things
like this before, but you hear me, now, and you answer
and said you love this more than me, with your sweet, fine teeth
with ghost-stains on them and the engine of muscle
you labor to perfect and your eyes
like thorn-wreaths spinning in your head, you said
that it’s an important part of who you are.
So is it your revenge, or-un-revenge, your un-gift
to me, that with you gone I don’t laugh at
anything, not shitty love songs on the radio
or boys who fall playing basketball, not the IT guy
who pretends not to be the IT guy when things go wrong,
all the laughing in me vanished
without you, and I know you’re right, it’s probably
better without you, but it’s as though I lost,
along with the dark, twitching, inconsolable
complaint, I lost the air, the laugh
its glassy, tender ribs

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5-9/30 [10 Apr 2015|03:59pm]
I’m living in a secret.
I want something and see
how want repels me from it,
an often-touched searing iron,
jackal worrying a cage of bones.
Inside me someone I can’t abandon
and can’t forgive. Inside me
someone who forgot the difference
between stories and stories and lives.
Cowering, shovelfaced night
arrives again, ready to eat me
up, face to face, lip to lip.

fuck you, long, half-assed spring,
like you only arrived because someone forced you to.
And my job where I still go, every day,
Despite our mutual disdain. And how
the last man I loved let it slowly turn him
inside out, until when he kissed me
it was a manner of facing away. How it seems
the only remedy for dull sorrow is sharp sorrow
and I need this cured. Then, yesterday
I read Ross’s book and it was as though reached into me
and lifted up the cankers on my heart until they burst into lilies,
and also like he was wringing from me small monsoons
of tears the technology of which
I did not understand and I thought of how much
he was hurting me, and then I thought is this hurt?
Is it some other thing? Have I been mistaken
in what I wanted all along?

I’m getting rid of the typewriter, the love-gift.
I’m afraid you’ll think I’m cruel for doing it, afraid,
not having heard your voice for sixteen months, that this
will somehow get back to you and you’ll remember
the rest of it, how each cell of my skin convected
into dissembling glass – I mean, how I cheated on you.
I’m sorry. It was making me sad there in the closet,
and I miss you and so I’m getting rid of it, heavy olive case,
smell of old and patient ink, the precious letter
you left in there that I keep, now, in my desk. Dark grains
floating across my vision, of what I did to you.
For months I slept next to a new man and it didn’t stop,
the pull back to you, tender and anxious in memory.
I’ve been barely writing, you know. And I don’t know you
anymore, not your heart, which someone cradles,
I hope, like a river polishing a stone until
my face is gone from it. No, I don’t hope that.
You know I haven’t called because you are sick
of apology, and there’s nothing else. I put it out
on the street. Someone will take it away.
The ancient rite, cracking open its small brass jaw
to see what’s there.

I wish I still had the note that I found,
at our old apartment, wedged in the door
as I came back from putting laundry in,
which was from an unidentified neighbor
who had overheard me (or my roommate
but definitely me) making some coital noise
and who wanted to be invited to come
watch, who said I should call
or text and then  the number was nearly illegible,
and I can’t recall precisely which letters
were malformed or what words
misspelled (“horny,” I think,
duped him.) We knew who it was,
the twenty-something son of our upstairs neighbors,
who shared their own noises of braying complaint
and marital impact and water running
for long, strange intervals. His father
kept being drunk in a hospital way, his mother
shrill-hoarse but invisible. The boy himself,
a little squinty, low-slung in the pants, the one time
I spoke with him, was getting through a GED program.
I guess I don’t have anything to say about it. The same
unreasoning fear that comes for real or imagined danger
put it’s cool hand between my shoulderblades.
My roommate and I read it together
and made laughing sounds.
We put it on the fridge.

how did it happen that there was
that girl, whose small mouth I kissed in august,
and it was because I wanted to, and her mouth
poured into me a frost and escape
and it’s less than a year and she’s done nothing
wrong and the last thing on earth I want
is her touch? I think it is a sin, this change
of heart.
there was a part when my mother had told
my father and I that she needed some time,
which we heard as, you know, they were going
to get back together. And then when I asked her, l
ater (was it days? Weeks? I was 7, who knows)
when she would go back to him, she said she wouldn’t.
Her boyfriend was there with us. We were walking
around the baseball field behind the house.
She couldn’t look at me.
And I fantasize, you know? This greedy,
wronged time traveler, as if I could go
back to the moment when it was still possible,
if I could make another choice. Revive the cartoon
starburst glimmering in my eye. This is how
it’s happened to me, my lover’s body
turned to sand, how it crowds through my closing fingers.
To know exactly what I’ve done to someone else.
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1-4/30 [05 Apr 2015|10:38pm]
Someone should have told her, the
child-me, her blue-turning held-breath-face
tantrum she threw for sugar, attention, the right
TV program, someone should have told her
what she wanted, if I keep wanting it, happens
and always wrong the terracotta vase smashed
on his kitchen floor, wife videotaping his bender,
I did that, because I sat in his class wanting him
for months, and wanting means wanting him
alone like this, broken, like my father alone
and turning towards me in terrible need,
this is what I wished, his loneliness, and the rest
doesn’t come, his trembling in my hand, never
never says because I know him from the red fluted hall
of the ribcage, I can come in where his wife
would never go, take up her empty throne,
someone should have told the child-me
about need, the poison of limitlessness,
how with that asking, there can be no reigns, a ship
studded with arrows, burning, no escaping
the escape, how I made him into the mystery
of him, the quarry in my head, and the lie
I told myself that wore his face is calling
I know what’s on the other side, the way
the granted wish is a curse, the bad djinn
twisting your want in his furious hands

Ode to Tranny Voice

praise the voice, the vocal folds’ mystery
apparatus, alchemy of air flushed
into a sound that is mine, praise
the muscle and harbor if it, praise that it is not
passable, that it tilts up at the end, and will not
be dissuaded despite my employment
of a specialist to coach it back down,
praise it for telling the truth, that I was raised
a girl which means inside of the syllable
is a second guess, an apology, praise the rote
and soulless speech pathology exercises
for opening the throat and praise my performance
of them even when I am unhappy, even
when I am on a subway platform
or walking in midtown or with my father
who parrots and mocks, praise it.
This juncture where silence
pours into you, the world you’ve swallowed
coming back out your own, whole, yes,
praise the bony cavities of sinus
trembling so rapid it troubles the air
praise the tongue whose small protuberance
is only the tip of a swath of velvet muscle
retreating around the throat, praise the catch
and buzz I can hear when I do not mean it,
which tells me I do not mean it, I have lied,
praise this means by which you know
I am here, you know
I have something to say to you

well, if I need it then I’ll die, I guess.
Volumes and volumes. Theory, metaphor, treatment.
Addiction is simple. There are two ways.
One is only the substance, that something is possessed
of such chemical magic that your body aches to rely
on it, to want more of it before it’s gone.
The other way starts before it starts, the hurt you can’t negotiate
then piece by piece you realize that there is something
you can do to not feel it, and then you make your life
into a church of that anesthetic, so you paint-marker
over the windows, shove rags under the doors,
so your devotion is total, no other world. And then, horribly
your god comes to its limit. If it is bad enough, and you are
lucky, and you work, you can, perhaps, put it down.
Learn a new lesson, that the world is survivable,
if you can stop resisting the pain, the pain of the resistance
will abate, and you’ll be left with pain itself. Which would
be fine. But what if nature doesn’t want me in it.
What if the power I got in the lonely church
was make believe and was still my only power
if without it, my original pain will wipe me clean
off the earth until I cannot breathe or wake, what then.
If I was right the first time, if it’s a love story. Me
and the mythic poison. Me and the bomb I have made myself.

here’s the shadow-lamprey who prefers
to curl in a posterior valve of the heart.
Its mouth, toothy ring, stuck to the red
velvet wall, and here the corner of artery
where it likes to set up its sofa, its bag
of Cheetos, its potbelly unrubbed only because
it has no hands. How do I know? The tiny fiber-optic cameras
proceeding through thoracic incisions
come to shine their little spotlights on his living room.
The lamprey says, “squatter’s rights,”
says it’s the owner’s fault for hoarding
so much shit in there and what can you do?
He’s running the show. Mayor of detritus,
reigning over all that you took into your body
and couldn’t love, sugarnumbed longing,
grease-marbled upholstery, see how he attaches
again the gauntlet of his teeth unfixing the red ribbons
from their corridor, their calling, and I’m writing
a petition to get him out, letters to the editor, the national guard,
some soldier to come in and carry the little bleeder
out by the scruff. But he won’t leave. Not
while he’s being fed. The camera seeping green
and dusk, him at the center,
explaining, he only eats what’s dead.
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NT log 10 [19 Dec 2011|02:07pm]
Week 15.
So, life has been really hard and sad, and i haven't been very on top of this. I also spent a few weeks, (after i took testoripped and freaked out, in a previous post,) doing a pretty low grade product called testostrogrow hp 2, which didn't seem different to me than the regimen i'd been on for the first 6 weeks. Then, i started on an androstenetrione pyramid plan, but for a couple weeks, i wasn't able to work out at all, which probably set back my results. That said, i'm definitely seeing some things. I have maybe 5 or 8 chin hairs, as opposed to my previous one or two. My body is trying valiantly to grow chest hair. Since i have been back in the gym, the past week, week and a half, the workouts feel really good, and i am maybe bulking up somewhat more easily that i would have, otherwise, though that gets into a subjective sort of observation.

That said, it still feels pretty halting. I will probably talk to the doctor about hormone replacement, when i see her in early january.

Also, i think i am about to start on a 30/30, since this is the only time in the foreseeable future when i might be able to do one. So in anyone else on here wants to go in, the 20th to the 20th, of course i'd love that.Though i know most everyone rubbed one out in november, and probably isn't ready to go again.
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NT log 9 [28 Oct 2011|01:29pm]
Midweek 7. Woooo, lost track of time, apparently, for a while, there.
Everything is basically fine.
Still more muscle tone.
Still nothing else to report.
I do have to say, week 7 is when you're supposed to start taking an additional t-booster. I tried to take testoRIPPED, but i had also been avoiding caffiene, and testoRIPPED has caffiene in it, so i spent the day REALLY feeling all fucked up. Sweating and very speedy and dizzy. So i got a bottle of something called testogrow HP 2, which so far doesn't seem to be doing much, but doesn't make me feel like i'm about to die, either. I'll take that for a few weeks, then switch to androstenetrione.
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NT log 8 [09 Oct 2011|12:09pm]
Midweek 4. I've joined a gym, in addition to the dojo. I weighed myself, for the first time since about august, and i seem to have lost a little weight, which is not what i had expected/hoped. Down from 140-ish to 135. Since my last entry I have yet to go a day without cheating, at least a little, on the diet. And today i have a show at a culinary salon. So, in the coming week, but not tonight, i'll be cracking down on that. I think my voice may be down a little, but i also am definitely hoping to hear that, and it's hard to hear your own voice. I guess i should start making recordings.
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NT log 7 [06 Oct 2011|11:38am]
Just starting week 4, which, for those following along, means my DHEA dose is going from 25 to 50mg. I hope it doesn't make me crazy and mean.

Also, I've been almost ignoring the diet. Almost. So i need to recommit to that. I just love sugar, nah mean? But i can do better. I will. Except not on sunday, because I'm reading at a salon with a tea party where there will be fancy little cakes.

I'm curious/apprehensive about how i'll be able to keep up with fitness stuff when i'm on  the road next month.

My muscle tone continues to improve. I've done a lot of staring at particular square inches of my skin, looking for additional hair growth, which is a surprisingly subjective process. But i think better muscle definition is still about the only thing to actually report.
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NT log 6 [30 Sep 2011|06:51pm]
Day 17. Menstrual onset seems unaffected. So, headaches and general frustration-explosions in the past week or so were par for the course, too. I can't see, but can feel, another striation in my abs! I'm sure to miss a day or two of strength training to cramps, though.
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NT log 6 [28 Sep 2011|12:11pm]
Just starting week 3. Yesterday i had a headache and some rage-type feelings, but it's probably just my uterus, asserting itself. It's that time. Nothing else seems different.
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NT log 5 [25 Sep 2011|12:55am]
Everything's going pretty well.
My boo noticed that my abs and glutes are definitely getting more defined, which is crazy, since it's been less than 2 weeks. I feel guilty (that may not be exactly the right word), that i look better because i'm taking pills. It's interesting, how it's really not seperable from vanity, using this process: The testosterone you're trying to trick your body into generating relies on building muscle.
Also, this chin acne had BETTER be wakening hair follicles. But i don't think it is.

There's a real blog, incidentally, up on my real blog.
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NT log 4 [21 Sep 2011|10:27pm]
Day 8. Just trying to keep up with the log. Definitely seeing improvement in muscle tone, but no other effects so far. I'm worried (obviously, just worried that it won't work, as well, but also worried) that i'll get all big, and like it, on the vanity level, and end up wanting to take these supplements with cardiac and liver-related consequences. I am still having diet adherence trouble, but i made a big grocery trip today with the intent of having more condusive food in the house. Also, i drank an extra coffee and then had a panic attack. Now, whose fault is that? Duh. I mean, it's somewhat exogenous, too, the anxiety. But it should be getting better.
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NT log 3 [19 Sep 2011|01:04pm]
It's been an anxious few days, but that's external phenomena, not this. No real physical training on saturday. Sunday was some power yoga and core work. Still seeing some slight improvements in muscle tone, some increase in acne, very little else. I've been having some trouble adhering to the diet, as i predicted: i didn't want to throw food away, so i'm working through some tomato sauce and fennel seeds. I also ate some birthday cake. And, during the week, it's hard for me to get enough sleep, which i know is a limiting factor. I'm looking forward to seeing what i can do for upper-body training tonight.
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NT log 2 [16 Sep 2011|09:54pm]
Day 3. Definitely seeing some changes, already, in muscle tone, and also some extra acne. It's nothing too drmatic, but it's certainly happening.

Moods have been stable. Last night was actually very nice. Training at the dojo today, the aerobic/warm-up part felt worse than usual, but the strength and conditioning stuff was very manageable. We do something different every week, in conditioning class, though, so that isn't really going to be a barometer of how i'm doing.

Obviously, day 3, there's still nothing noteworthy as far as androgenic effects.
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NT log 1 [15 Sep 2011|04:44pm]
So, I have a blog now on my actual website, updated very, very infrequently. I am gonna continue the practice of doing 30/30s here and then locking them up. But, in the online diary spirit of LJ, i'm also undertaking something else:

I'm going to be posting quick notes here on transition-related stuff. I'm doing a variant of the natural transition program designed by Tristan and Sicily Skye of transqueer nation (i'm not taking any fatburners/amphetamines, i'm going to be cycling on and off of the dhea every 6 weeks once my routine is stabilized, and i'm going to cheat on the diet part, almost definitely, more than they recommend. Nor will i stop drinking coffee. But i'm doing everything else that say.)

I'm logging it because there isn't a ton of data about this transition method, and also because i need to keep track of any interactions with my mental health.

So here goes. I'm almost 28 years old. i'm biologically female. 5'8", 145, muscular. The only thing i take on top of the NT regimen is low dose valtrex and occasional ibuprofen. This is day 2. I'm 12 days into my menstrual cycle which generally runs 31-33 days.

I feel fine. I feel a little cranky and tired, but not more than i likely would from life. Yesterday, when i did my strength training, i felt like i was already performing a little better, but it was day 1, so that's probably psychogenerated. I also had some peri-migrane activity (visual disturbance) yesterday afternoon, but it was brief and not severe. my migranes are often hormonally triggered.
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annnnd 14/30 [16 Apr 2011|12:29am]
ed: So, i generally lock up 3030 drafts when the month is over, but I'm leaving this one public, because in a way, i didn't write it, and in a way, it is hilarious--

Found Poem, Actual Google Search Histories

How to train your voice to be lower
How to bake a potato
How to calculate a square root
How to wear suspenders
How to tighten buttons on a coat
How do you clean a fleshlight
How many sperm are in an ejaculation
How to make him fall in love with you
How to write a novel
How to create safe space
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[21 Nov 2010|11:58pm]
i just posted another locked jam, if you're out there keeping score.
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[09 Nov 2010|02:14am]
i am throwing up one post locked, here, because the material is too too sahn-sit-ave. But, if you're reading without an LJ account, and you want proof that i'm still going at it, feel free to comment or email and i'll get it to you.
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Quick question [14 Oct 2010|04:08am]
Hey, homos. I want to do a 30/30 in November. Do you?
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Napowrimo summary, since i locked the drafts [06 May 2010|01:24pm]
this April, a lot of dead girls. Some going crazy. Being un-over it, and by it, i mean 2005-2007. And, to verbatim quote a line from one of my more disgruntled freewrites "whyyyyyy more tepid identity meditation?"

look for a chapbook, very soon.
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