When an attack occurs, drawers are pulled out and rugs jerked from under our feet. Electrical outlets become dangerous. We have to be ready for it.
The world is ending. But we still have sexual attraction, poetry reviews, the system.
Getting the financials ready for the nuns.
Human Resources burns and disfigures my feet to keep me from talking.
When we return, we find that the insects are missing, and so are the cake pieces. Sores appear on B’s skin.
An elderly woman clasps her hands around the back of my neck and hangs off me, desperate to get my attention.
She was performing on the steps when she realized the city was deserted.
Unpacking a series of unusual lamps. Tiny lights along sleek white strings. Thick braids of incandescent wire, fibrous like muscles. Although some are too large, I must swallow as many as I can. There is not a lot of time.
It is all pretend. All we do is pretend. More and more, the older we get.
Once in a while I wake to a large, perfectly symmetrical spider dangling from a web directly in front of my face. The image is detailed and digital-clear. When I start in fright and revulsion, I come more fully into consciousness and realize nothing is there.
A film collage chorus of women and men saying ‘Fun! Fun! Fun!’
He wants to show it to me—the stairs to the basement, everything. No one has seen it from the south.
He writes my name, but it’s not me that he’s addressing.
I drop a beautiful dress into a public toilet. I try to flush it, but it becomes jammed. The more I try to flush, the more clogged it gets. Finally I have to get my hands in there to pull it out and then wring it dry. I do all this while S is waiting outside. I don’t want her to know what has happened because she might think less of me.
The things I want to believe about myself versus the things that are actually true.
At the mall, two small children are separated from their parents. I keep seeing them all searching for each other as I walk around the building, until after a while it’s only the children that I see. The parents have given up.
While I sleep, the wall plaster collapses. Now the neighbour can see into my room.
The realm of superstitions, fortune-telling, presentiments, intuition, dreams,...– Krzysztof Kieślowski
Brother, father—things I’ll never be, even in reverse.
The house is large. There is a room I don’t go into. I’ve dreamed of this house before. Something malevolent in that room. You’re just gonna avoid it forever? a voice in my head sneers.
I run into D on the street. But something is not right. He’s different. I move to hug him, but he shrinks away. I ask how things are, and he just shakes his head; if he’d like to get together, but another shake of the head. His clothes are stained.
A scoop of flesh.
I lie on the bed, thinking about the cabaret.
We are exiting the parking lot when we see an injured dog. Its leg has been severed and it stumbles, dazed, in front of our car. V goes to call for help. The dog limps up to me, asking to be soothed, and I stroke its head.
A lot of forgetting. Explanations of things. Waiting.
The man leaves the party to go get something—a drink, perhaps. He doesn’t return. I see him a while later, wandering the wild edges of the property alone. He appears to have lost his mind. Back inside the party, his wife grows increasingly anxious. The others try to reassure her that he’s probably somewhere nearby and will be back any minute, but I know better.
The campus is eerily empty. Long, twisting, steeply-ascending paths and roads. He puts me on his back and we climb the school building together.
The last time
The house is truly beautiful—no bad vibes, no sinister atmosphere—although it was grander the last time I visited, when someone actually lived here.
We glide into the classroom on a boat.
My new bedroom faces the street. The window has no screen. A passing young man puts his arm through it and points at me.
[O]ne can’t build little white picket fences to keep nightmares out.– Anne Sexton
Maybe it’s best not to react at all when working with ghosts. Otherwise you give them all the power. And it saves colleagues.
The people in my family kept shifting, as did my relationship to them, and my age.
In the hotel room for one last night. He doesn’t want to go out and see anything. He just wants to be with me in the room, in the bed.
The new apartment doesn’t feel like home yet. We barely ever use the living room, and I’m often out. A lost dog wanders into our backyard. He won’t trust me enough to come close and let me look at the tag on his collar.
B goes for a jog, suited up with safety glasses.
A boldface kind of guy who has lots of italicized projects. He usually has a lot to say, using many descriptors.
Very long distances in the parking lot.
He tries to bully me, as if we were children, to tell me where I will go and when. ‘No, I won’t,’ I say. The defiance in my voice buoys me out into empty space but I find that I don’t fall; I float.
The camera will tell him if I’ve been in his bedroom. The truth is, I have.
Lamps kept me awake. A complicated series of lights and switches I had to figure out before I could achieve darkness for sleep.
He wanted me to give everything over to him. All the commands, the prepositional phrases, the instructions, my sentences—all the things I use to execute. So he could issue them when he was ready.
The man stands at the mall entrance and puts small black pieces of tissue paper shaped like birds on his tongue. He spits them at people walking by.
The drive toward the formation of metaphors is the fundamental human drive.– Friedrich Nietzsche
They tattooed all the information in tiny type on his teeth.
The photos show her in the room just minutes before her death. But how could someone die, completely alone, in a room? And who took those photos?
I’m wearing a white shirt, even though I would never do that in real life: white looks terrible on me.
Down the hotel stairs, over and over again. And each time I descend, I am chased by wolfish men-things: one following behind; one somewhere up ahead. At every landing, I must slow to throw open a heavy door. I beat them away repeatedly but they just love to terrorize me.
A new transit system with poorly conceived and executed signage. No one knows how to get on the trains—what times, which cars, which platforms.
He entered the room without realizing what was in there, and it overpowered him. He needed something—but need and poverty make you vulnerable. He began to age.