nothing difficult or easy or small or colossal


Posts: 113
Joined: Sat Feb 10, 2007 7:26 pm

nothing difficult or easy or small or colossal

Post by likeaspark » Sun Mar 18, 2007 1:28 am

Today has been the longest day of my life. Quite literally. I woke up at 7 a.m. on Saturday morning in Seoul, South Korea. Thirty sleepless hours have passed, I am back in my own bed in Georgia, and it is still Saturday.

The jet lag is rough; my body and my mind are at odds with each other. Until the winner is decided, I am going to open up another channel through which TLS can sap away my life. And so it begins.

I am 21 years old and I grew up in the suburbs of Atlanta.

My life, up to the present moment, has been charmed, and I am fully aware and terrified of that fact.

My parents divorced when I was 3, remained good friends, remarried wonderful people, and settled in houses less than one mile from each other. I have an older sister (by less than 2 years) working in Atlanta, and a younger half-sister (age:7) who is undoubtedly the light of my life and also the next Christ child. Just kidding. Don't mind my blasphemy.

Everyone in my family including my mother, sisters, and both step-parents are fair, blond, and blue-eyed. I am uniquely tall, dark, and mysterious. Not to mention that I tan quite fetchingly.

Exodus A:
The week after I graduated high school, my mother and step-father packed their bags, sold the house, and moved to a small strip of an island best known for harboring one of the last remnant communities of the dying Gullah culture. The island has no roads connecting it to the outside world, is only accessible by boat, and is largely lawless. The cook and owner of the only restaurant on the island recently stabbed her husband, the captain of the ferry, in the eye with a magic marker. Beyond question, this island is my favorite place on Earth.

([INTERLUDE; FOR HERE IT IS WORTH NOTING THAT] this move was not unexpected or uncharacteristic of my mother and step-father.

We had the house on the island that is my favorite place on Earth for a number of years before they moved there permanently. Prior to the move, the house burned (wholly) down inexplicably one Christmas Eve. Interestingly, there have only been two serious fires on the island in the span of a decade. The second fire occurred during the same week our house burned down, and afflicted the home of attorney Ken Nugent, "One Call, That's All", if anyone is familiar. That's another story, for another interlude.

My mother is quite whimsical. She has, in her day, been an author of children's books, a motivational speaker, a firewalker, and a "Dream Coach". She currently teaches high school composition and world literature, and publishes a local magazine. My step-father is not quite as whimsical as my mother, but he does, indeed, go along with it all.)

Exodus B:

October 2006.
Family at dinner laughing; all fair, blond, and blue-eyed with exception of one man and one tall, dark, and mysterious young woman with quite a fetching tan. All are cackling hysterically at the absurdity of a job proposition brought forth earlier to the non-blond man by an old friend. "SOUTH KOREA!" one family member shrieks, hilariously.

January 2007
Family moves to South Korea.

...body conquers mind, ruthlessly..

to be continued.


Posts: 113
Joined: Sat Feb 10, 2007 7:26 pm

Angels and Moths

Post by likeaspark » Sat Apr 14, 2007 12:57 am

If a man once loved you,
he's turned you into a moth.

That's how he'll remember
the flutter: that numinous,
that beating, that winged.

Angels and moths:
that's who men love.

But I don't recollect like that.
I don't think I ever loved
that gently. And I've never
flown toward a burning
house, hoping, maybe
my faith lay in that
single thing left,
in that smoldering filigree.
I never reminisce a sorrow that delicately shaped.

But sometimes I feel someone remembering
me that way: translucent,
crazy, awake only at night.
He's regretting his fingertips
were not wide or soft enough.
He's mourning me now.
He's imagining me eating away at someone else's light.

And that's perfect.
That's exactly how
he always wanted to love
me. My wings,
my hair-like antennae
my frenulum
between his forefinger
and his thumb.



Posts: 113
Joined: Sat Feb 10, 2007 7:26 pm

The Story of a Summer

Post by likeaspark » Mon Apr 30, 2007 2:07 am

Wednesday, May 24, 2006
9:48 p.m. / 2:48 p.m.


1. Home is a noise and a strange oral exercise.
2. Home is a pocket.

I am lying in a bed, on an island, five thousand miles away from the place I call home. Home. Truth one: after four months of travel, I don’t know what the word means anymore. I am staring at it, and it is swelling in my mouth and suffocating my logic, and I simply cannot put any reasonable meaning to such a nonsensical combination of letters. It’s like vanilla. I used to say the word over and over and over again until it became nothing more than a primitive noise and a circus act of bizarre and arbitrary arrangements of the tongue and lips. Vanilla becomes an empty shell and a corpse, far removed from the sensory experience it (on good days) implies. Any word can be dethroned. For a truly existential phenomenon, try your own name.
"As if all words,” Nietzche once declared, “were not pockets into which now this and now that has been put, and now many things at once!" Before leaving, I never considered home. I never had a need to; I was always standing on it. Suddenly, removed from the concept, Nietzche would say I now put many things at once into home. I put people into home, but not everyone: the family went in, and just four friends (strangely not the four I would have expected). A horse went in, as well as a cat with blue eyes and two dogs. A motley assortment of places, things, and situations: the left side of the ragged, sagging couch in the corner of my dearly beloved, 3 a.m. coffee shop, Scrabble at hand; a cocoon of a bunk bed built into the navy wall with white trim and perfect lighting, cool, crisp sheets against sunburned skin, heavy eyelids under an afternoon shower on a hard tin roof; corn on the cob on a strong wooden table, the glimmer of lightning bugs, paper napkins, and swingsets, the wet nose of a dog vying at my feet for dropped delicacies.

to be continued


Posts: 113
Joined: Sat Feb 10, 2007 7:26 pm

Welcome to Rhodes

Post by likeaspark » Mon Apr 30, 2007 2:08 am

“Ya better not be teachin’im any nasty habits there, huh!” The plane was tiny and his popping eyes peered at me through the crack in the seats. “No sir,” I responded, leaning backward, pressing my spine into rough upholstery. He cackled loudly. “You know what the first word you gotta teach ‘im is, don’t cha?” I was on an obscure charter flight, directed by a no-name airline, to Rhodes, Greece. There were sixteen people on the plane. Thirteen of them were Greek, and the two sitting in front of me were from Greenville, South Carolina. My birthplace. Five thousand miles away from home and I was somehow still smelling the breath and watching the spit fly from the mouth of the American south. “No sir, I don’t know. What is it?” He smashed his face further between the seats, widened his eyes. “You, a Southern belle, don’t know the first word ya gotta teach to a FO-rinner?” Touchdown. I unbuckled my seatbelt, smiled politely, and shook my head. “She don’t know!” he twanged, elbowing his wife who brushed him off disinterestedly. “She really don’t know!” Laptop case down, backpack on. Let me off this plane, now. “You don’t know, huh? The first word?” Moving towards the ramp, I shook my head again, a little more definitively this time. “What kinda Southern girl are you?” Obligatory giggle, shrug. My feet hit pavement and I made for my escape. “Y’ALL!” he shrieked wildly. “It’s Y’ALL!!”
“Not to worry, we will find you when you land,” Iris had written in the final e-mail before I left Italy for Greece. Now, as I trekked alone across the small airfield to the airport, I sincerely hoped she was right. Right off the plane, the geography seemed Saharan. Each of the fifteen other passengers seemed to have evaporated, and I was alone. The sky was dusty and yellow, and short, dry shrubs lined the runway. Heat rose in gaseous waves from the pavement, turning the sun into a gelatinous mass quivering on a drab horizon. Everything was asphalt, rock, and melting. - I shall call this place Desolation. –Get off my back, Poet.
Sportif, like tennis, non-smoker? You may be perfect summer company for our son. I found the job on, but a certain number of raised eyebrows trained me to use the term “global classifieds” instead. Iris had sent a low-quality picture – the photograph, of herself, her husband Dmitris, and her bronzed, wild-eyed and wild-haired son, Yannis, all donning skin-tight shorts and tank tops, was certainly a print ad for Spandex. I hoped I would be able to recognize them. Rhodes Airport is one room– check-in, baggage check, customs, and baggage claim all conveniently in one location. I glanced around as I waited for my luggage, and I recognized them immediately. Iris and Yannis were standing just beyond the glass doors of the airport entrance. She was tall, thin, blonde, and supermodel beautiful, and Yannis seemed to be practicing karate moves on her.

to be continued


Posts: 113
Joined: Sat Feb 10, 2007 7:26 pm


Post by likeaspark » Mon Apr 30, 2007 2:09 am

He stopped every few minutes, stopping the line of six impatient Jeeps behind us, leaned out his open door, and pulled soft plants out of the ground by their roots. He placed a cluster of tender, velvet leaves in my hand. “Smell them,” he instructed. “Mint?” I ventured. “Sage.” A handful of fine curled tendrils. “Thyme.” A miniature bouquet of paper white blossoms. “Jasmine”. “Are you religious?” he asked. “No,” I replied after a fraction of a second’s hesitation, “are you?” “No.” He pointed to a pile of rocks as we rolled by. “I believe in those.” Now towards a colossal, gnarled olive tree. “And in that.” He reached through the open frame of the Jeep and animatedly pulled down a handful of pine needles. “And in this!” Turning around to face me, he offered them with a silly grin lighting his eyes: “Pine”.

not to be continued

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Posts: 113
Joined: Sat Feb 10, 2007 7:26 pm


Post by likeaspark » Mon May 14, 2007 9:45 pm

“When I call your name,” bellowed Dr. McAlexander from the doorway, “you are to take your essay and you are to walk out of the classroom and fully remove yourself from the building before you look at your grade. These grades are more fixed than the word of God and I do not want to hear from any one of you for one goddamn week!” Professor McAlexander was not a man I, or any other English major at the University of Georgia, wanted to disappoint. He fingered through the essays on the podium and the crisp rustle of paper against anxious silence reduced me to a mass of sweaty palms and racing heart. “ABRAHAM!” All eyes in the classroom locked on the girl, the quiet one, who sat in the back row. We feared for her. “Now remember,” added McAlexander in his infamous Southern drawl, “a bad grade does not necessarily mean you are a bad person. THOUGH YOU ALL PROBABLY ARE ANYWAYS!”
Hubert Horton McAlexander is something of a legend in the University of Georgia English department. I first began to comprehend the gravity of this man during my freshman-year American literature course, when my professor, a cocky young graduate student, would act out lengthy impersonations of him. If we did nothing else with our lives, he had instructed us, take a class with Dr. McAlexander. And so I did, and on the first day of his class, I finally understood why anyone would be hard pressed to find an English major at UGA who has not, in some state of giddy intoxication, attempted a riotous impersonation of the professor.

in progress


Posts: 113
Joined: Sat Feb 10, 2007 7:26 pm


Post by likeaspark » Mon Oct 15, 2007 5:33 pm


even before poststructuralist theory
made it all so difficult to read,
the fact was well-known –
you’ll never really know
the real intent.

The Construction of, Everything, is Just That, and is Opaque:

so take these fragile bones and fragile words
and know you’ll never know
what sweet marrows
they may carry

speak, speak! in ivory fractures, hairline whispers
take mine
take me
and do with us
what you can.

(but to see a single leaf
from a tree -- let’s not speak in sounds of bone.)

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