Archive for category Publishing

Persephone

CHAPTER ONE
In The Beginning

I have never known the precise moment that I became pregnant by Immaculate Conception. I suppose some women don’t know when exactly they conceive, but I have always felt that my particular situation was deserving of special notification. I do know however when this concept, not as an actual possibility of course, but as an ancient story transplanted into a modern context, entered my consciousness for the first time.

I was living on College Street and working in the Religious Studies library stacking books at the University of Toronto. I realized, while placing a copy of the King James Version of The Bible back on the shelf, that my period was late. The question must have been formulated on the way home from work. Walking usually instigates thought.

“If I became pregnant by Immaculate Conception would I have to follow the religion of my child?” I asked my roommate as I walked in the door. He was sitting on our blue velour sofa, in our Ramona painted living room, watching his cigarette smoke hang, suspended in the air. After a minute he responded, “No, as long as you supported it, that would be fine.” At the time this was a hypothetical question based on one fact: My period was late and I hadn’t slept with anyone in months.

During my late teens and early twenties I would go through five-month periods of celibacy every year. This was usually induced by an especially negative or positive sexual experience, never a mediocre one. The unfavourable experience would turn me off sex because I would have to take the time to figure out why it had happened and the positive experience would remind me to avoid bad sex. Mediocre experiences could never evoke an extreme reaction like celibacy. I can’t remember how I used to exit these periods, except that they always seemed to end after about five months.

The sexual experience prior to this particular period in question was a negative one. A man i had met in a bar, that I use to frequent, had wormed his way into my apartment, into my bed and consequently, into me. I didn’t want to sleep with him but unfortunately at the time I felt it was easier to submit that to deal with his ego. This threw me into a period of heavy analysis as to why some women do such things. Being involved with men, I find, is not conducive to this type of examination.

After a few months, I came to the conclusion; that women aren’t often taught to do what they want to do. From this I decided that I would, as simple as it sounds, only sleep with men that I really wanted to sleep with. At the time, I didn’t think of it as missed, it was late, and would come again just as it always did. I continued my life as if it were still my life.

“How can we be 98% water? It definitely doesn’t feel like I’m 98% water.” I asked as I took another toke of the joint.

“That’s great. We should get T-shirts made up with that on the front. ‘I sure don’t feel like 98% water.’ Let’s write that down so we don’t forget it.” Joe said excitedly as he pinched the roach from my fingers.

“Didn’t it use to be 70%? No aren’t we 80%?” Dave asked. He had been a bad experience from four years ago. I ignored him, as I reached for the pad of paper we saved just for these moments of what we thought of as “moments of genius.”

I had met Joe, my roommate, five years earlier at a party. He was introduced to me by my boyfriend of the time. When I moved back to Toronto years later, we bumped into each other and went for lunch. He had just moved back from Vancouver and was looking for a roommate. I had been living at home, trying to avoid the inevitable adult life. Over that lunch, we decided we would move in together and within four days we had found our apartment. We used to sleep together on occasion, never when I was with someone else, but often if he was. In retrospect, I wanted to be with him in my strange, incapable of commitment kind of way, and we had sex whenever he wanted to.

As I wrote down the quote, the phone rang. It was a sound I always hated when I was high.

“Joe, please get that, I got it the last time,” I pleaded. This was a game we often played.

“No you didn’t. I’m not answering it.”

“Fine!” I stomped off into the kitchen and grabbed the phone just before the answering machine picked up.

“Hullo?”

“Lea?” It was my best friend.

“Les, thank God it’s you.”

“What’s up? You stoned?”

“Yeah.”

Leslie and I had been friends for three years but it felt like forever. If something important happened in our lives it never felt real until we told each other about it. We had met in Montreal where we went to university. I was in Religious Studies and she was in Jewish History. I had always noticed her in the library because of her amazingly enormous hair and her silver nose ring.

The first day we met, we were in the smoking room on the fourth floor of the library. We were both in there by ourselves sitting across from each other. In the centre of the badly ventilated, garbage filled room there was a group of men discussing feminism loudly and crudely. We kept giving each other knowing glances of disdain and finally she said to me, so that they could hear, “I don’t think we need to subject ourselves to this bullshit. Shall we go?” The men turned to look and I felt my chest tighten. All I could do was nod, put out my cigarette and follow her out the door. From that point on, until my pregnancy, we were the best of friends. At the time of this call, she was in New York doing her Masters.

“Les, is it possible that I’ve been getting my period for the last four months but its all been a facade and really I’ve been pregnant all along?” I finally expressed my growing concern about my missing period. This verbalization to Leslie now meant the situation was placed on a level or reality it hadn’t been on before.

“God, you are stoned.” She laughed.

“O.k., I’m kind of serious. I mean, how can my period be almost a month late? I haven’t had sex in four months. Can you think of any reason besides Immaculate Conception?” I said this jokingly because at the time I of course felt that say this was simply an expression of my bewilderment surrounding the situation and nothing more.

“Maybe you should go to the doctor. Are you stressed? Have you been exercising more than normal? I would ask you if you’ve lost weight but I know you haven’t. I don’t think it’s remotely possible that you’re pregnant. Your period is late for some reason but it will come eventually don’t worry.”

“You think I should go to the doctor?”

“Why not?”

I made an appointment the next day.

“I’d like to make an appointment with Doctor Movak as soon as possible.”

“What is it regarding?” The secretary asked in a nasal voice. She was so protective of his time.

“Um. Well, my period is quite late and I’m not sure what’s going on.” I said nervously. Would this problem be taken seriously enough to grant me some time with him?

“Have you taken a pregnancy test? She asked accusingly.

“Well, no. It’s not possible that I’m pregnant.”

“I can give you a time on August 27th. 3:00.”

“But that’s in a month.” I whined.

“Dr. Movak is going on vacation in two weeks and he’s booked solidly until then. Is this an emergency?”

“I suppose not.”

“Fine.” She hung up.

I felt rejected. Wasn’t my problem good enough for them? What if I had ovarian cancer and I had to wait another month while it festered in my body? What if I was dying?  This month was going to be hell, unless of course my period arrived.

In the month that followed, I preceded to do copious amounts of drugs. In retrospect, I believe I did this to help me forget about my ensuing death, and/or destroy whatever could be growing inside me, be it cancer or the impossible child. The reality was that, more often than not, drugs enhanced the situation. Coke, was good for the rush but it made me talk about my circumstance to strangers in bars. Pot was usually good, however, if I thought too much while high, paranoia would take over and death was all consuming. Hallucinogens weren’t the best either. On occasion, during the month of August, God himself spoke to me about our coming child. The only time he did, I might add.

In the end, I found the combination of large quantities of alcohol, which dulls the mind and the ability to communicate, coke, after I was already drunk, with pot to take the edge off on my way down. This was the most effective ménage a trios. I had always believed Joe’s theory that three mind-altering substances at one time was the limit, and if you stuck to it, you would be fine in the end. My graduate fellowship helped me pay for this month of extreme debauchery.

“What if we aren’t really here? I mean, yeah, we’re just a figment of someone’s imagination, like God’s.  Yeah know what I mean?” Dave took a large swig of his beer and waited for my response.

“I don’t think that matters at all. Can I get another gin and tonic? Thanks.” I was on my sixth and feeling no pain, except in regard to the conversation I was having with Dave.

“How can that not matter? What if it’s all a sick game?”

“Dave, I am no longer interested in this conversation. I’m going to play pool with Joe.” Dave had this habit of not being the brightest of people. He also felt the need to challenge me constantly on any issue especially if it pertained to theology and philosophy.

From as far back as I can remember, religion and philosophy had always fascinated me. My parents got divorced when I was three and I lived with my mother. She was searching for god and took me along for the ride; my dad didn’t want to go with us. Not because his father died, which happened the same year, and not because I turned three, which is what I thought, but because he said my mom had started to change, fundamentally.

According to him, it was that she read a book about Carl Jung and he still was into Sigmund Freud. He told me their break up was the most devastating thing that had ever happened to him, other than his father dying.

I don’t remember my grandfather very well, he died young.  I have a vague memory of riding my tricycle up to him at my aunt’s house. I also remember my dad being very sad when he died. They say these memories can’t be true, but they are to me.

I’ve been told my grandfather was a smart, kind man. He collected stamps and wrote for the Globe and Mail. My father just recently found out what liver disease he died from, on the Internet, (the same thing his best and oldest friend has), they didn’t know at the time. Needless to say, it was not a good year for the whole family.

My mother was Christian by birth and so Christ was always present in her travels, however far she would stray. As well as Christ, we also explored aspects of Jung, The Gestalt and Buddhism. Once when I was three, we went to the Astrodome in Texas to see a man speak who said he was the Son of God. My Dad told me that he drove a Ferrari and got his secretary pregnant. Was this before or after Jung?

My mom spent many hours in the closet meditating and when she wasn’t doing that she was cutting out squared from coloured construction paper. She would arrange and rearrange them all over our apartment walls. From age four through eight, my mom and I use to visit a man who changed his name every week. It was here that I had my guardian angel painted and learned to meditate. It was during this period of my life that my mother told me that God knew what I was thinking even before I did. I use to lie in bed for hours and try to outthink God.

We used to live in an attic apartment above a family. I would wake up in the moring and go down to their place for breakfast while my mom spent time with the closet. For three years they were my surrogate family. They had a son my age, Paul. We were in the same class a t school. When we moved, I didn’t see Paul again until my first year of university in Montreal. Seeing him, reminded me, that children often become more extreme than their parents, in order to please them.

“ Clea is that you?” A voice said as I walked in the door of one of my first university parties.

“Oh, my God. Paul is that you?” I said, hoping desperately that it wasn’t. He was a witness, unlike any other, to the time in my life, I didn’t want to remember.

“Of course it is. How are you?” He asked, a little too concerned for my liking.

We got to talking, despite my obvious discomfort. After the catching up chatter and quite a few drinks, he brought up the time we lived on Woodlawn Street together.

“I have so many memories from that house,” he mused. “Like that game you use to make me play, remember?”

My stomach tightened, “No”. I really didn’t, unless he was referring to “Playing Doctor” of course. He was the first and only boy I played that game with, curious about the penis and vagina. I held my breath.

“You use to make me put on rubber boots and rubber gloves and we would dance around in a circle chanting the same thing over and over again for hours. What was it? It was like a mantra or something. That was such a funny thing to do wasn’t it?” He started to laugh.

I didn’t know which was worse, this, or playing doctor. “Excuse me, I have to go to the bathroom,” I said, as I barged to the front of the line and just made it before I vomited on the floor. My God, I hope it was worth it to me to have been like that then so I can feel it’s worth it now.

For the rest of the night, I tried desperately to avoid him. When I eventually bumped into him again he was drunk. He put his arm around my shoulders and begain to introduce me to his friends as “the girl I use to live with.” I tried to explain it wasn’t quite like that but soon gave up out of shear emotional exhaustion.

Once Paul and I shared a ride back to Toronto from school; he convinced me to come in and see his parents. I felt nauseous, but acquiesced in order to appear normal, as I often did. As soon as I saw them and the way they looked at me, I knew it was a mistake to be there.

“How are you?” His mom asked with too much concern.

“Fine, fine,” I replied shortly, I started to see stars.

How is your mom?” Her expression of warmth, concern, combined with the knowledge behind it almost broke me.

“Great?” I said over-enthusiastically, my face twitching.

Suddenly, we were alone in the kitchen. She didn’t waist anytime, probably sensing this would be her only chance. She was right about that.

“I remember when she really withdrew, your mom. We were so worried about you two. I use to call your Dad and let him know how you were. You spent a lot of time with us you know.”

“Yes. Thank you, thanks.” I felt like I always had to thank these people, people who I had been left with as a child. I needed to get out of there, fast.

“Paul?” I called. “Do you mind dropping me off now? I really have got to get going. Thanks again, nice to see you all.” I said, as I backed out of the kitchen. I had spent so much time with this woman in the kitchen.

When I was seven, my mother took me out of my school and we moved away from Paul and his family across town to the Zencentre. Things started to go downhill. The man with the changing name had suggested that this would be a good place for us, I disagreed but we went any way. I hated my new school. Everyone seemed to have oversized heads and swore too much. They scared me.

There were ten adults living in the Zencentre and me. Of all the people who lived in the house I only remember Sherry. She had curly brown hair and I loved her. When I left almost a year later, she gave me an orange flowered lacquer box. I still have it.

Every day, the adults would gather together in the main room, it was long and narrow with a Buddha at the end, and stare at dots on the wall for two hours at a time. They eventually had a robe made for me, so that I could join in. It was gold and yellow and I loved it. Being seven however, made this daily ritual unspeakable torture. I couldn’t move or talk for two hours every day. They didn’t make me do it, I wanted to. It was a way for me to belong, to spend time with my mom. I would inevitably leave before the two hours were up. I would go up to the third floor and pull the phone our from Sherry’s bedroom. I would sit in the middle of the white hexagonal shape created by the position of the doors and call my father.

“Daddy?”

“Hi Sweetie, how are you?”

“Daddy…please come and get me. I hate it here. Please come and get me. I want to live with you. I want to go back to my old school and live with you.” I would often cry.

I don’t even think he could respond with anything but, “I know honey. I love you. I know. You’re coming to visit in two days. I know, I know.” Although I had confided my true feelings to my father, it hadn’t done me any good.

We use to eat on the floor out of brightly coloured bowls of various sizes. We would sit cross-legged on the floor and ritualistically eat without speaking, always noodles. Until I was in my late-teens, I couldn’t taste Asian style noodles without getting nauseous.  Every weak we wither couldn’t speak for three days at a time or couldn’t eat for the same length of time. My mother would sneak me yogurt and whisper, “Shhhh, eat quietly.”

A cat started to come and visit me at the house. It became my sole friend and confidant. I named the cat Zebulon and loved him intently.

One day, I heard it meowing outside the back door. I went to look and on the porch was a half dead bird. I started to shake with fear. How could this cat that I loved do this to a poor little bird? I shooed Zeb away and brought the bird inside. I kept it in a cardboard box and tried to feed it with a dropper, just as my dad had told me to do. I couldn’t ask my mother for advice because the whole event was too high in negative energy for her to handle.

During the last days of this bird’s life, I remembered a conversation I had had with my father a few weeks prior on one of my visits.

“Dad, do you believe in God?” We were driving to Canadian tire, a favourite pastime of ours. I use to love to put the bolts on my fingers like rings. He would buy me one every time. Visiting my Dad up until this moment was always such a relief.

“No. I don’t.”  He responded.

This was unbelievable to me. “Why not?”

“I decided when I was a child that I didn’t, and I still don’t.”

“How.”

“I once found a bird that had flown into a window but hadn’t died yet. I took it home and tried to nurse it back to health. I decided, if God saved the bird, he existed, if he did not, then he didn’t. The bird died.”

“But Dad, how can that be proof?” I always wanted proof. I desperately wanted an adult to be able to prove to me whether or not god existed and this, although shocking, was not proof.

“It was to me.”

I told my mother about what my father had said. She told me that his was not a good reason to dismiss God and that what had happened to my Dad was a test from God and my Dad had failed. I found this greatly disturbing. Even though I was young, I knew this meant that in order to please my mother, if the bird died, I had to see it as part of God’s plan and not as a declaration of his absence.

To my father, I now had to simulate his previous experience. I was caught completely confused in the middle. I didn’t realize at the time, that the feelings of relief I felt when I was with him, were in fact because of his secular nature. Of course the bird died and I tried to believe it meant that God was dead, but I just couldn’t take this event as proof. The cat killed it. It just wasn’t enough. My mother was pleased.

When I would stay with my Dad on the weekends, in the Bathurst apartment, soon after my parents got divorced, he used to leave me a snack in the fridge. Sometimes I had to remind him. I would get up at 7am, go to the fridge and get the snack. I would sit down, in front of the T.V. until he would get up around 1 or 2 in the afternoon. He slept all the time. He was not happy. Sometimes Sophia use to come and play with me, I think this must have been later, though I’m not sure. I remember every night, when I would go to bed on the mattress in the living room, there was a shadow on the wall that looked like a man with an axe, I would be paralysed with fear. The next morning I would forget to tell him.

He was much happier once he was with Sophia. When they lived together my Dad and I use to play all the time. “Footy”, was one of my favourite games. It was a way for him to stay in bed longer, I would sit on the floor at the end of the bed; he would hang his foot out and talk his foot. I remember thinking it was a real little creature, not his foot at all. I use to slap it around when he would fall back asleep saying, “Footy, Footy are you there?” He would get hours more doze time with the Footy game. He told me, I use to talk to his foot for hours and all he had to do was twitch it every once and a while. I also remember “Shark”. We would be in his bed and I would have to secure the fort around me with the covers, and he, The Shark, would try to attack me. I remember loving these games.

Then there was the “Dirty Foot Monster” game. In order to ensure that I would wash my feet in the bath, he would tell me stories of the Dirty Foot Monster who ate dirty feet. Every once in a while, he would turn into the Dirty Foot Monster and chase me into the bathroom. I would run screaming and lock the door, while he would stand outside to make sure I washed my feet. I eventually, after years it felt like, got so scared of the dirty foot monster that at bedtime he once told me a story, like he always did. Sometimes I wouldn’t let him read, he had to make it up. He told me the Dirty Foot Monster had discovered turnips, which supposedly tasted just like dirty feet, so he went to live on Farmer Browns farm to eat turnips all day. I was so relieved.

He used to tell me stories about furry newts, (I had newts, not furry of course) that use to travel around the city on people’s faces masquerading as their eyebrows. I loved those stories. He even rewrote the end of Stuart Little for me, because it was so sad to me that Stuart got separated from the Robin. He wrote it on his typewriter. He put me into the story. I loved the new ending. I still have these pages, now yellow with age. They are in the back of the book, the happy ending.

No Comments

Found poems cached

Archive for category Poems

Elephant

Posted by admin in Poems on February 13th, 2010

Then count the glasses, the blinds, the dots on the wall, count them, count them afterward, always afterwards, always after words…was it always like this or was it like this then and then for some reason now because of her age, now go.

Rock’n roll

This album is in my car

The hounds of hell,

There is no help for you here girl go away, there is no home for you here, there is no help for you here girl go away, there is no home for you here, that’s right,

I don’t know what to do with myself

Come to me again in the cold, cold night

I’ll just lie in my bed anxiously waiting until you go home

No Comments

Turandot

Posted by admin in Poems on February 9th, 2010

This story is what I think of when I think of you.

No Comments

Seven: Written in the summer

Posted by admin in Poems on February 9th, 2010

“Rag mama rag this is the band, this is where it is remember shit can you remember this that time we had that don’t worry about that where did they go that is true where did they go now here there here there it can’t be like that where are they, where were they, that’s the wine on the wall this is where I was this is where I was ok this is where I was. Do you hear me? Know this is where I was. The wine and how do I stay out of that? Is that the character? This is the character, the addict, there is one old and young this is ok, there we go that’s fine there why you don’t want that character her e you don’t want that character here is that right ok.”

“That’s it.”

“Where did I go? Is that who you mean?”

“Be careful.”

“Thank you A.”

“Must be careful this is where the need comes from, the need, people knowing where is it going, this is where I was and this can’t go there, this was me calling J and this was me calling my d for lunch, this is lunch. This is lunch!”

“Start again, you here, start again.”

“Never should have taken the very best.”

“This is the table I miss.”

“What are you doing? How are you doing? How’s it going?”

“How’s it going? Pretty good how about you? Hi how are you?” pretty well

“How’s it going, Hi how are you, how is it going? Hi how are you? How’s it going? This is me, this is good I bow down to you to say I would like something from you I would like something from you say I would like things to be like this I have to get this off of my computer to get this going I have to get this going from off of my computer this is how it is going this is how it is going this is how it is going this is how it is going. I left and he took charge he took over I left and he took over this is what needs to happen I left and he took over. This went up too high, went up too high, this went up too high. Keep it lower must keep it lower, the flies ,the heat, the store, the Asian way, the way Dao is the way, the way there are many paths, these are the ways, this has to be clean like a meditation, clean like a meditation, we must ask to go into each other’s room, we have to ask to go into each other’s rooms, this is the way it will be then to ask to go into each other’s rooms we can do that, we have to ask to do that, I think this must be the way to do it, this must be the way to do it, this must be the way to do it. To ask to be grateful to go into what I have to do, this must be written down as it has been written down; this must be written down as it is written down. To combine all three to combine the three to ask before to ask before this will be written down to ask before.

Ok it is important to ask. I’ll ask next time this must be the thing to do to ask next time to ask next time. Please be for me and not for her why did I bring her there to help her to help her but I would like it if she would be there for me. This cannot be ok this whole thing what is going on must be careful and to ask if this is ok to ask the universe to ask to hear you wouldn’t believe what I have heard.

This is ok now be healthy this is who I must see maybe this is who I must see but I have to be careful this I must be careful about this it must be something to be careful about this I must be careful about. They are all crying and it’s very hard to write while they are all crying, they are all crying but I can’t help. I am here at least, I am in the garage and close to them.

Nest time nest time ovulation ok nest time I can keep going, I don’t have to do this I don’t have to I can’t find this anyway I probably can’t find this anyway. Maybe we should go together we should go see someone together we need to see a therapist together I guess we do we should I mean we should see two together. This is what I have this is what I have this is what I have this is what I have.

No Comments

Existential Crisis #4 or is that A Creative Crisis or is that creative illness or is that separation anxiety or is that self analysis or is that love found and lost, then web of loss, or is that a cocoon??

Posted by admin in Poems on February 9th, 2010

Oh haven’t I documented the last three?

1: I should preface this with, I had just moved off of college street after living above coco lezzone for almost three years and was wanting to leave the film industry and get married and have children, so this was after getting engaged and my fiancee moving into my new apartment on Bartlett with me from London, while still living in the apartment on Bartlett above Bloor after living with my roommate on college stand before getting married: Crisis

Result of crisis: Left film, started therapy and my second BA in psychology at York which I completed in 2002, two years with distinction and volunteering at the distress centre and in Kanauague Quebec, I never spell it right, as well, my first degree being Honours East Asian Studies McGill 91-95

2: After getting married and buying a house:Crisis

Result of crisis: Finished writing Persephone which I started in the apt on college street written originally for the Anvil Three Day Novel Writing contest, my roommate won, I edited his book, also took writing workshops with author Cary Fagan, and journalism courses at Ryerson and wrote for Eye weekly

3:After kid number one was 18months:Crisis

Result of crisis: wrote 56 poems, read them at the art bar and was told they were more like songs,  was already taking guitar lessons at central tech and in my instructors basement on Palmerston, singing from scratch at the royal conservatory a total trip, then pottery on Harbord, working on film Solace, painting lessons from my neighbours sister in her garden, then into U of T course 20th century abstraction

4:After kid number two was 18 months and my first kid went into grade one, huge separation:Crisis

Result of crisis be it existential or creative: Painting in a studio above The Department Gallery on Dundas West and, Writing, for six months, some group shows, also started poems on this blog, u of t modern architecture course and other prose, I suppose, and in the future like not this year because my kids too young, taking a Humber course on Creative Book Publishing and hopefully getting into the the writing schools correspondence course to write a novel from May to Nov will find out in a few days if Down the Street was accepted, the writer’s circle sounds cool too…

Dorthy Parker picking the word Horticulture out of a hat at one of the writers circles and having to use it in a sentence said:

You can lead a whore to culture but you can’t make her drink.”

respect

If this is not enough shared biographical information for Word press and Google I also worked in film as an assistant director for 10 years and traveled, in no particular order, through Italy, and France, drove and camped through Cape Breton, PEI and Nova Scotia, Scotland, Drove all around Ireland and Northern Ireland to see the Baymoore stone circles just before the Omah bombing of the shopping mall by the IRA, lived in Montreal and edited Vice Magazine, Denmark, Germany, France, Switzerland, UK, camped on the Isle of White, and travelled for three months in China, Mongolia, Myanmar, camped on the beach in Jamaica and saw Jimmy Cliff and Ziggy Marley live, Dominican Republic, California(like 40 times and all kinds of crazy shit) , New York many times for new years and friends and fun, Israel for a friends wedding SO GLAD I WENT just after my fiance moved to T.O left him in our cockroach infested apartment and went for two weeks with friend, Jordan, London, Paris, The Japanese airport many times, Copenhagen, Brugge (piece of my heart there too) Germany did I say Germany already, Munich for a day couldn’t handle the English German accent but went to the Oktoberfest bar anyway “ein beer bitta”,  Berlin, the wall had just come down, walked around east Berlin and the zoo listening to Graceland on my yellow walkman, very surreal, went to Dacau, Amsterdam, bridges and canals and the redlight, ate space cake, went to Anne Franks attic, I have the same birthday as she did and Andy Taylor from Duran Duran or was it her sister…Budapest, Czechoslovakia (a piece of my heart is in Prague with Boris and Dorian who couldn’t go home to Croatia because of the war, and Greece), Santarini with the black sand almost stayed there and worked in a cafe and slept on the floor and rooves for that matter and beaches of course, Edinburgh many times once, the first time, for the film festival with my family drove around in shamu singing all the way, also Sundance that same summer, Drove from Caledon through Texas to Mexico, as well as from San diego to Tijuana, as well as club med Ixtapa, Atlanta, Louisiana, Memphis Graceland, Drove from T.O to Taos New Mexico reading The First Third and wrote with friends, Cuba etc…and was born and raised in Toronto and I’m Lithuanian,  (fuck not Lutheran) but know nothing about that at all, maybe German, maybe Dutch  Jew, Irish, English, maybe Dutch, French, Protestant, (ouch) Canadian Aquarian water rat with Polish, Ukrainian, (Russian), (Israeli) American and Native Canadian sensibilities in some form or another, would like to go to where Pilvishik Lithuania used to be someday to see where my grandparents were from on one side, would love to go to Poland and Russia too, have been to England and Ireland and seen the stone circles and kilns and castles and rolling green moores and landscape unlike any other

Still in therapy, personally and couples  -  try anything you can ie acupuncture, chiropractor, yoga but not right now, massage but not any more, working out,  now going to get into winter jogging, and swimming, trying out the new tabs, alittle p.o.t etc…a drink now and again and good healthy food, I want to be a vegetarian again, I want to learn Reiki, and of course coffee and music, cigarettes only on a rare night out and maybe a dog at some point like a German Shepard or a husky, lab mix or something crazy like that, I love a Doberman but you have to be careful around the kids…and of course spending time in the schools and at home with the kids and helping out where I can without being too annoying…and figuring out how to help people who don’t have these things in a crisis

No Comments

Thank you

Posted by admin in Poems on February 7th, 2010

for biking beside me

on my way to pick up my daughter

and take her to the doctor

And thank you for the white bike

I found on the ground

I’ll use it for nights

out

No Comments

Can I get you anything else?

Posted by admin in Poems on February 7th, 2010

Just your undying love

And the promise that the snarl is for me

I’m  in my room

you said you could handle it

No Comments

This user hasn’t shared

Posted by admin in Poems on February 6th, 2010

This user hasn’t shared any biographical information

- Google or is it word press and I’m being rude?

Who the fuck is Google or word press to say I haven’t shared ANY biographical info?

Who are the people commenting on personal biographical poetry in different languages under made up names?

Where are these user’s shared biographical information?

- Anonymous

No Comments

Who? What?

Posted by admin in Poems on February 6th, 2010

Who is you or him?

Who is it you or him?

Who is it me or you?

Who is me or you?

What is me and you?

What about time?

What about pressure?

What about the weather?

Do you want to kill it?

Will it

No Comments

About

Posted by admin in Poems on February 2nd, 2010

artlocal 21 represents a local of a larger union, that being the larger art community in Toronto, Queen Street boasting the most galleries in North America in a concentrated area. We like the idea of Dundas West too as a gallery district perhaps a cultural hub, Brockton…This idea of an art union is a bit of a communist concept where no one really profits on the backs of others, it is horizontal and lateral, everyone having something of value to offer, no one more important than the other in that of course everyone including children ride on their parents backs from time to time and have to make a living. artlocal happenings in our very neighbourhoods, the mothers and fathers of the community, the neighbour hood artist, art is a way of life. Being a parent; It is important to be a parent in an artistic way and living in an economically and culturally diverse community is important for learning and growth and most importantly support the families especially in a downtown core. The drop-in centre’s are like free families for isolated urban mothers and fathers, grandparents and children. The community centre for all, the Centre for Mental Health and Addiction, for all, the Coffee Shop, the Music Shop, the Pet Shop for all. This is a drop in art space for isolated urban artists. artlocal like rick ferrari is also a bit of an alter ego for the sensitive artiste in a multi-cultural country where language and communication is challenging for everyone, artlocal kicks in to try and protect. artlocal is also a place where art can be bought and sold. national history. writing about local life.  street name artlocal.  number 21.

Full Circle

I didn’t think that I would be here again

This time I don’t want to make the same mistakes

Consume, consume

What are the mistakes?

What is the fantasy?

Strengthen the core

No one knows the future

Not even I

Lost

Not always

It’s too far away to go at night

I will never paint

I will never write

I have to live there

I have no fucking room

All the space I could possibly have

But I still have no fucking room

Recycling

No more plastic bags per se

Must pay

Only cloth

Or hard plastic stay

Now we use milk bags

Bread bags

Already in use bags

This

Is

How

It

Is

Now

New

World

Order

Architecture

So that’s it?

Great amazing structures of colonialism

Or is it Nationalism?

Identity

Of take over

Of combinations of colonizers and the colonized

Cultural appropriation

Greek Revival

It will never last forever

Sorry

Where are you?

Are you in the car?

Are you in the house?

The living room?

The dining room used for laundry?

The kitchen?

The bathroom?

The bedroom?

It’s mine not yours

The office?

Yours or mine?

Where are you?

I can’t find you

Anywhere

At all

Impressed by the cities ability to deal with the strike

The garbage could be much worse

Unions, CUPE, now hated

Always a problem

No jobs

Recession

No childcare

No work

No tourism….so selfish

I fucking hate CUPE

But trying not to hate in general

I cannot

I do think like this and so I must be like this. I can’t pretend but I can’t mix it in either, it’s just the way it goes, no mixing in this reality and then what about hormones and feeling life has no meaning and then meeting someone who’s love turns you on again is this right?

What do you do with this then? You walk around turned on and hope you don’t get attacked in a dark alley, you can’t be out at night all turned on and ovulating sending out the pheromones or what have you or is this just purely physical? A woman in heat. And does this mean it should mean less? Or maybe more because now that I think about it I really don’t feel this way very often or just once before really at the same age of my first daughter.

Was I looking for you? No, I just found you. When you decided we can’t have any more and I clearly cannot stop but agree we should not have more. This is what we have done; this is where we are going. I cannot hurt you now and I cannot be the older one who doesn’t recognize where things are going and blindly live in the 50’s, I cannot be her/e.

Angle

This angle doesn’t work for me it never has

So every time we have to adjust and remember that it never works for me

But you never do, you never remember, this may be a guy thing in which case I am so disheartened you can’t possible imagine because I love men but if you are all like this I am going to have some serious problems and then again maybe not so many because I will stay with the one I have and appreciate him because he is a keeper and what more could I want from a man who I was married too.

Maybe this marriage thing is the problem, my grandfather told me if you aren’t married then as a woman you aren’t protected, he is 95 and I think common law is pretty good now a days but what if you don’t even live with them that could be better for now anyway. ..I don’t know they say if you aren’t married it’s not for real, it won’t last but I know some who never were and they are fine.

I think I put too much into the dress and rings and all of this security means something but if from inside you don’t have it then it doesn’t matter or is this just marriage or years of being with someone in the same space it just happens, with kids it’s too hard for everyone or the loss we have had.

Is this what I will be searching about forever? I am sorry for that and I will have to remind you of the angle every time.

I only exist in this space

I didn’t think I would be here again,

Only tea,

Only tea,

Shhh shhh shhh

Sleep baby

Sleep

My girlfriend lives up the street

I’m sorry I yelled “HEY!” while you were beautiful

I just couldn’t stand there quietly in your beauty

I was going to say something but

I wasn’t being me

I still see you sweeping in black surrounded by wood and old music

I must have seemed like a horrible force

One day maybe I can say to you in a soft sweet voice

“Baby, don’t clean it like that” like a kiss

I have already destroyed what I have

I feel for sure I can’t go back

All is lost

Nothing good can come of anything

This must be true

I am trapped with feet and hands and now going down this road

Humanity

What

Are you good?

I can’t write this right now the kids just came down

Will They Always Hate Me

Will they always hate me and think it was me because I am the one who yells and you remain quietly passive the victim or the saviour and I the crazy European Jew who yells and gets no reaction from you is this better? If you weren’t a Jew, were a Jew or are you in your genes but not culturally/socially or is this genetic too so that is different would I then be the cold one that is my fear. Why do I never do the same? Why always the opposite way of communicating? Why do I never remember? If you yelled too maybe we would have had a problem. Now I know how to tone it down and you to not be so cold but is it too late, has the damage been done, will you be better off starting again too? Do we continue on? She said. I have parents that get along and turned our relationship into fantasy already and we are together that can’t be right. Some change is good, that word has taken on new meaning but the meaning is not always clear, and sometimes you have to make the change before you know. This is the problem now.

In my closet

I have a shirt that I keep in case the owner comes back for it

I gave away the jean shirt with the white pearly buttons

It’s actually a hooded sweater and a down vest

Will it fit you?

And the sleeves are there for cold weather writing

Some day

Organic or is it passive?

I always thought organic

Was the only way

To play

But now

I see

It is

Shrouded

In passivity

Tea, only tea,

In the afternoon

And evening

Are you with me?

When you take the empty cup away

My self goes with it

Throw it into you

Thrown into you

You say

You say

It hurts your feelings

When

I say

You throw my equilibrium off

When you talk like that

I ask you

Are we never supposed to be honest?

You say

No

I fucking hate you

I fucking hate you

And the way you speak

And eat

And smell

And taste

And your facade

And your weakness

And your strength

The thought of having sex with you makes me sick

Your little words of wisdom and encouragement too

I hate them all

In this moment

But maybe not the next

Runna

Leaves in the park

The darkness and the light

Runna

Runna

Wet smell of green grass

Over hanging trees

A dog

A man

A woman

Every one of them

Departing

A father

A daughter

A mother darting

Living it out on empty

Breathing heavy

Pounding through the grass

Off roading

In the fading light

When you talk to me like that

When you talk to me like that

My equilibrium goes off

The fluid in my head shifts

And I feel like I will spin

All the way down

Rainy Sunday afternoon

I just want to play with you

I can’t reach you here

Maybe for a moment or two

But I need longer than that

To check out your cat

You are so beautiful

I just want to touch you

Can you feel me here?

Are you going in today?

Just stay

Just stay

Crazy Weather

Is your baby

Caught in the rain

I have been angry for so long

Not understanding

Now I know why you never answer me

You don’t know the language

And I don’t know I’m speaking

Until now

I walk in

And see

All I have to do

Right there

And it hurts my eyes

My body ach-ing

Congratu-lations

I can’t stop hear-ing you

The sidewalks are full of strangers

Will you take me as I am?

Picturing you there

We could be man and wife

In that space

I hear you

What you are saying

Is true

And the yellow wallpaper too

I need your love

Your love

And

Your love

And

That love

Fire and rain

Cycle

I will try to figure this out another way

This is true

Honest and blue

I have to be here

Don’t worry about me

I love still love

You can follow me

If any one knows the balance of this

It will be me

It will be me

Snowy day UK
I only wanted to cuddle
sorry if you thought I wanted to have sex

Yes I was ovulating
and the tackle was attractive as are you always
but didn’t you catch the play acting?
Now you are a man of morals

I would never have sex with someone else, not even you, being married
I would also rather die than live that kind of British male lie
you don’t know the half of it do you JI
A facade and deception and indiscretion
soul destroying now you are annoying

More

Love and (be) longing like Maslow’s triangle. Love and longing more poetic but still you can’t carry your love and longing, love and belonging, love and belongings with you all the time when you leave the house, when you are homeless without him or you would never survive and you cannot leave your love and longing, your love and belongings behind you or you would never survive

How long?

You cannot carry your love and longing around with you or you won’t survive

And if you leave your love and longing behind what is the point of surviving

I cursed her one time then wrote on her head

You are home

You can build what you are building

And

Keep what you have already built

“Hipster,

Where has the yuppie gone?

Not that I’m complaining.”

Now

We have come full circle

Is it Neo Modern?

A break with the past as at the last turn

VS

Neo Arts and Crafts

Use your hands but it costs so much

Still desirable

Or a combo of the two

Creating something new

Reminder

You were so surprised

When I put on make up

Did you think I wasn’t a woman before?

I still AM

Thanks for the reminder

But it’s nothing new to me

Just briefly forgotten and new

I hate

I really do

Every generation

Must make its own city

And this is you

“I have a city

In my mind”,

He said escaping

The Croatian War

Killer whales depress me

So does going back to bed

Thank you

Pilates mostly

Yoga

Thank you

Yoga

Hands

And

Yoga

Don’t cross anything

Just bracket

I need my guitar to be at home

How are we supposed to play?

How is this supposed to work?

Interactive

Yes way

No way

Uh huh

Nuh uh

Now Inside

And feeling better

The bad taste is on its way

Out

Sunday Dec 6th

A heavy day

Remembering the shootings someone accused my father of

The poetry reading

Can’t really claim it for my own

Nor the music

Nor the coffee shop

Although all three are helping

I am outside

With a bad taste in my mouth

On January 17th, 2010

How is this supposed to work?

How are we supposed to play?

IN-TER-ACT-IVE

Yes

Artlocal 21 Presents a night of Poetry Readings » Artlocal 21 Presents a night of Poetry Readings

This entry was posted on Sunday, June 21st, 2009 and is filed under Poems. You can follow any responses The poets were talented and charismatic as was the audience, the department gallery with it’s dark orange curtains, black leather sofa and ottoman, lights and eclectic mix of wood and plastic coloured chairs, one black, I never did see who sat there. The benches and the back patio a perfect place to meet for a drink in between the taster, thanks MC, and the rest of the warm summer evening. The artwork colours mentioned throughout, the Canadian mixture of insects, the wilderness, waiting and watching, a loss of innocence, until the next one…

No Comments

How

Posted by admin in Poems on January 17th, 2010

How is this suppose to work?

How are we suppose to play?

Interactive?

Yes way

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

No Comments

When are you going to change if you are not going to change right now?

When are you going to change if you are not going to change right now?

This format doesn’t work for me anymore…

, , , , , , , , , , , , ,

No Comments

15 pages of 75

Down the Street

Fifteen pages of 75 Sent in for

Admission to

The Humber School for Writers Correspondence Course

May 2010

I was accepted but dropped the course and am now in a yoga teachers training course at Yoga Space to deepen my practice and learn to sit still while going through a divorce. The first 6 pages of Down the Street is being published in Canadian Voices Volume 11

The rest of this story, I will try to edit soon…

By

Cassandra Cronenberg Hunter

Down the street on the street these lyrics can’t be beat, this is my head don’t destroy it, I gotta place to be to be he said, I gotta place to be he said, bouncing along the street as he often did and always did before and forever. This is the way he walks, this is the way she walks, he/she, he, she, he, she, this is where it is, the never ending flow why does there have to be finality why does there have to be a finality can it not keep going can it not keep going. “This is she”. This is a girl’s life. The life of a girl not the life of this hustler this hustler who is on the street doing coke living to the beat coughing and cursing and hurting this is not his life this is hers this is her life now. Can this be it can this be the life she lives from then to now the street is hers she is a musician you can tell from the way she walks but not the irritating kind of woman who continues to sing all the time weather whether she is walking around or not she has the music in her head but she doesn’t need to always show she is a singer and sing at every occasion but yes when she starts she can’t stop she cannot stop she needs to find a guitar player but not to fall in love just to be able to still be married and to have this guitar this age she is now is this where the story begins or is she younger is she younger is this the way “what do you want?” “What do you want?” he said to me once and she crosses her hands in front of her and back out and juts her chin to him and he says I’ll remember that for next time. A fight she wants to fight. No one had ever asked her that before or understood her actions like that or directed her like that before.“What do you want what do you want, so quickly with his chin out with his British toughness and smoothness he says I’ll remember that for next time he says, she loves him then.

This is where she is now they are together and he is her producer. They have breakfast, they read the paper, is she “high or low”, he gives her the thumbs up, they go on vacation together, they have a routine and they record her and he is behind the glass and has to see him all the time totally dependent on what he thinks of her and he leaves her when she has to be alone. “I have to go” If he didn’t she would never get off the couch as it is she can hardly get off. He knows her cycle where she is at ovulating or not he is controlling and sometimes she rebels.  The Irish in her comes out and she breaks free and runs and runs free. When he runs free he used drugs and porn and prostitution when she runs free she is like a wild horse running free why can’t he be? They do coke together some times but in a very polite fashion and grown up not like the bouncing at the reggae club this bouncing and bouncing doesn’t work for her it’s too speedy. This is another guy tony let’s say it’s Tony and he is the coke and porn and speedy Brit they call him the brief kind of guy who comes into town when her and her producer are living their civilized music life with a bit of rock and roll he comes to visit them Tony and he causes trouble his fast ways are attractive to her scary and uncouth they stir up all of this she is ovulating and she ends up in bed with him one night after a few lines of lovely coke she wants him he reminds her of when they first met her and Jeremy when they first met and he was so beautiful and so strong and such a good driver and so on the edge of life and so raw and untouchable. Tony kind of reminds her of how Jeremy once was way too into the London drug and music scene for her coming from Toronto it was a bit dark and fast and expensive but she liked that that is what she liked. She wanted to be stabbed and put in jail it all seemed so romantic. Like her Yugoslavian lover who could not go home because of the war when she travelled in Czechoslovakia as a teen ager and searching about her Jewish identity and her father who is he? That street life, the motorcycles the coke the music the film this was attractive to her of course.

Sitting at her vanity putting on her make up before the show, eye to eye, the line of mascara over the top eye lid, her silk blue dress half price with her fly London shoes, this was in the middle, to this was when she lived above the Italian restaurant on college street her vanity but not the silk dress, this dress is now and Jeremy comes later when she is in her forties and doing large shows larger concerts. The seventies a girl, the eighties becoming a teenager and stepping out trying to learn guitar, trying but it only happens for her later. Is this it? Her life didn’t lend itself to that of a painter. And always in school that dream of a PhD has to go that dream will go can’t focus on too many just get rid of the 31% turn it into an incomplete and then carry on with this faith with no money and put it into child care this is what will happen. Does she have children now or later as a married artist painter and musician and writer this is what she does this is her will she be a teacher too will she get her MA maybe not it is too hard for her to do this now. Let that dream go and carry on with this one thank you Jeremy for helping me this time, the people who help these are the ones to love and to help these reciprocal relationships.

Now the lip liner just a bit around the bottom and fill it in lightly so it will stay and bit of L’Oreal gloss this is her now in front of the mirror seeing the lines by her eyes. She will be forty in three years. Her room is pale yellow the wood furniture is dark and a bit art deco as is she, the jazz singer. The full lips and dark eyes her silk blue dress her brown leather shoes with wood heels she looks like she came out of the war, to the war and Ester and Miles and the street on Crawford. Pilvishik Lithuania. She was an eccentric dresser and played piano for the National Ballet, he wrote for the Globe and Mail and collected stamps, the collection agency came and took all of their furniture away. Lie down with dogs and you get up with flees and they were an eccentric couple so her neighbours parents say now that she had moved south of Bloor with her husband, down where they would have been beaten up if they had lived there before. This is where it is, this is the place where they live. She is also like them, like her and now also like him, they are in her: Her jazz.

Jeremy said thank you or was that Tony when she dressed up for him when they went to see reggae as she had done many times before at Roots Bamboo in Negril Jamaica and at the Bamboo club in Toronto before it closed down on Queen Street, with her ex who just like him, like Jeremy except not addicted to coke of course,  with blond hair and blue eyes just like her and his friend was her friend and they were the couple and now she is with the dark haired one and he the blue eyed one is the friend, opposites now and similar. The shark who cannot stop moving or else it will die, are all people with blue eyes like sharks I wonder, this is how it is, she is now a writer a musician and painter and likes to figure out the body and seeing into the future and where is it they go these will be her friends other people hurt her and they cannot be talked to anymore, it’s only a friend if they don’t hurt you if they can’t hurt you. It’s fine if it keeps going in.

It is just that the father of her children he was an owl and puffed out on occasion and she couldn’t get to having sex with him again, she could never figure out how. Is that how she met Tony? She ended up in bed with him or was that Jeremy? That was how she ended up in bed with him but she had been with men like him before and was that Tony or Jeremy?

When he poured his rum into her glass she loved him of course she said “well I haven’t been drinking that all night “and poured it back into his glass. Then softly she said alright and he poured it back into her glass and she drank it. She drank rum and cokes for years and years with her first love, the blond with blue eyes and they went to Jamaica together and camped on the beach. She lost her virginity to him but he also tormented her with his female friends. Although it’s quite possible she could be tormented or would be tormented by any one of her lover’s female friends.

She wants to smoke always to smoke always back to the cigarette this will make it bad at the end it really will. She tries not to smoke as she has a drag and watches herself in the vanity mirror must really try it would be nice to on occasion have one or two.

She doesn’t want to depend on others she cannot just bum from anyone she needs her own but only for Saturdays only for now not for later what about her daughters and the love can’t happen with smoke in the mouth and on the clothes it’s not good for them. But she has to be realistic. It is realistic. Just for today not for tomorrow or for when she is getting the kids or any of that it is not good for any of that just keep going only for going out if she goes out she can buy a pack otherwise she shouldn’t do it she shouldn’t smoke at all she can’t sing and smoke anyway it’s too painful. The energy comes out for painting this is what she does with that and anger for painting and then for the exercise it is important to exercise as well this she can do sometimes and not others.

She finishes her cigarette and puts it out in the ash tray by the window. She puts her hair up into a butterfly clip and is ready to go. There is nothing there with her husband anymore but she has dressed up for Jeremy and he says thank you and again she loves him. He helped her cut the ties off her shoulders and still and to make the dress new again and still she went upstairs and comes back down after she has put her make up on and sees the swirling pink design on the back of his t-shirt and she sends it to him and he feels it as she walks down the stairs and they are right there together again. This is how her father and step mom are they are together again whenever they are together alone and travelling but for her and her husband it’s not the same really it doesn’t feel like that to her it never was really like that. They just kept going without really having to be together again they never had that what she has with Jeremy but not a fantasy not just a fantasy but one that works for them one that really works for them into his back and her into him and this is what they felt they felt it together into the backs.

He said she should have done what her friend did coming down in an outfit ready for her show one that she made saying here I am and then tada and he says ok but she asked Jeremy to help her cut the ties off and he helped her look up even though she will never ask him if she looks ok or talk to him about her bowels these things are what he has made clear to her on this trip and that is what they have done although he did help her look up instead of down and her bowels are functioning much better thank you for asking I can happily keep that to myself. We must try but there is support and that works to. She just can’t see how the hair flipping rugby player can also be him can also be him who she walked down the stairs to see who was there.

ON the sofa her heart opened to him, her heart chakra I guess this is her too. It is a great thing. When she is three things will be better. Are they really meant to talk alone when they are alone? Her and the father of her children and going to see a therapist together in November actually on the same day they lost their first baby. Why does she feel so separate from him so, so separate? All the time his mother said to her that we are only just a bit better than their generation as far as the relationships and marriage go they both ended in divorce or stayed and involved cheating.

It was like they were on a date he wanted to speak to me and to go out with me let us go out so we can go out he said let him go out with his friend so that we can go out which we did the next night all of us together I just don’t understand. He speaks to her in ways she has never heard and loves him for this but then he is bouncing and on coke and her heart hurts and she feels the reggae and Israel and that is her heart, that is where her heart is.

Her grandfather in Ottawa died this weekend she is sure of it at 95. What about the cottage, the canoe, Trudeau? They might have to move to England. She loves her neighbours the musicians. She loves them and sees the warmth that the UK doesn’t have, the island the attack “it’s too much for her” he says as she squats down speaking to the Israeli about New York and how he can’t get in. It’s too much for her.

Did he fly over for me even though it was his friends fortieth birthday? Did he hear that divorce was eminent and wanting to keep it all in the family he came to her. Is he a bachelor? Most likely but it would be good to talk to him about his children. Why always putting his hands on her hips to say stay skinny that she must stay skinny this is the producer he has become. She is the female Elvis and of course becomes fat and does too many drugs and O.D.’s and then is a spirit that flies around protecting and watching her daughters grow without her.

This makes her sad to see her own future this vision she wants to read people to read her tarot cards to read, her aunt taught her, her mother taught her the vision, her father had visions, how to make them clear to clean them first to read them to read the situation, furrowing her brow instead of just blacking out, it happens all the time and she can’t figure out why. The bartender at the corner coffee bar says it happens to people. She connects it to her Jewishness then but maybe it is because of her separation or because of this art where she goes to write it’s where she goes in her head when she comes in and out of writing. Her fits. She has her fits her writing fits her imagination fits. Her stomach this is a mystery to be figured out some day but not now.

She is a European Jew she needs to look at Lithuania and Pilvishuk she needs to find this out what happened there her cousin went and the town doesn’t exist anymore it’s just a cemetery. Her grandparents on her dads side where both from there but met over here in Toronto although Miles was from Maryland and she Ester was in Toronto but both lived around the corner from each other this does help it really does. She is also Irish and English this Pagenness she is both of these things and German and French too these things too when you are all of these people it can be confusing and certainly you will not be marrying the boy next door and if you do they may turn out to be a Scottish depressive who kills themselves in their 70’s, half upper class British of course. So high up that not only are they related to Bertrand Russell, the Russell’s, but his mother’s granny’s god mother was Queen Victoria and was named after her because her father was a duke of some sort. How could she know that when she was sitting with her favourite eastern European Jewish immigrant grandma at her piano singing the Grand O’Duke of York with Poopy the cat climbing on the back of the light coloured wooden upright at the age of six that her own daughter would be singing the same song with her granny in England on a similar coloured upright.

Her English grandfather many, many, 7 generations Canadian from England always talked about the history and British history, the battle of Hastings is where her daughter’s granny lives.

Her beloved fathers mother Ester, her son came to fame to Toronto to Canada came to this and built and became who he is and became class as the father of my children said before we were married the nouveau riche and made fun of us as I made fun of his incestuous coming from money dangerous family.

Where does the Jamaican thing come from? Where does this come from the trust fund who first told her about that? Oh her friend the couple the women the one who writes music with the dark hair not the blue eyed film maker – what is this about the ruthlessness of the blue eyes. Well it was fair really although she knew he owned his own flat like her old friend m had money left when his dad died and he was best friends with her first love they lived together in the same house. He lived in his house like Jeremy lived in the father of her children’s house. He was a dealer when she met him and so was he a dealer when she met him, they both, the brown hair brown eyes, played music and they, the blue eyes with blond hair sold drugs and worried about the environment and wanted to travel and made big plans but rarely saw them through and were less stable with less money. These pair’s of men, she’s had a few.

The Jamaica connection is funny though but yes back to that it was fair because as much as she knew he owned his own flat, he knew her dad had money and she had money working in film and her own car etc., as did he. In this way it was fair because she didn’t know about the Jamaican trust fund babies and he didn’t know about her film family.

Oh yes there was another pair when she lived on college above the Italian restaurant m and p although his eyes were green but yes they both played music and the dark haired one was more depressed then the other although the green eyed one also had lost his dad too, all of these pairs of opposites with no father’s, where did all the father’s go?

Now the pair now or for the last 10 years 10years by 10 years by 10 years and now the pair who are her musician neighbours with dark and blue male and female though and now she and the father for her children are also blue and brownish green. She remembers her dad talking to her about genetics and drawing it for her in squares on a napkin on the white modern kitchen island in the 80’s with bb and gr and br and that all mixing together would make different colours. Her dad and step mom going to have babies and her being the dark one and he the blond with blue eyes although not really, more black Irish, blue eyes and dark hair.

What about him who she met years ago at the Communist’s Daughter and his crazy half Jewish political alcoholic wife and their son the same age as her first daughter and there first baby even much worse than ours, Solace, he is Irish, dark hair and blue eyes and a drinker, unlike her father who never drank. They wooed her to work with them, she, the wife who was her old friend from Montreal, said she was his first choice and it became sexual of course. She hasn’t learned how to make art with anyone without it being too sexual. Well the two in between seemed to work better, the painter in her studio, 1’st generation Scott and the chemistry was there but no infidelity and the, well seeing the rudeness of men always helps to end the fantasy.  Get off my back; she always feels that way with them, with people, get off my back.

They always say the worst things, men that is, the painter says “You really need to find a better way to get around” meaning she needs to find a way that is not sexual, but what about chemistry and pulling people out not to have sex with them but to connect to the chemistry. Maybe she was too promiscuous in her 20’s. With Jeremy in the house she wanted to have owner ship of him to sleep with him so he would be hers she is so possessive. He is like her dad she wants to possess him. Like the dream with her old roommate and her cousin and her dad all in an old, old room and she is like a prostitute but they are all in bed together in the old house with wood and she spills the tray of beads she throws the tray everywhere. She puts her hand underneath and lifts them into the air FLYING IN RAGE. What were they all doing in bed together – she never gets the bear. She never got any of them. Well her roommate for a bit and he was a bear.

“Nearly there” he says when we are so clearly there, that is what is so annoying, she really hates him she really does hate him. He tries to be like his mother or maybe he just is, nearly there makes her want to smash him over the head and kill him.

They also had many conversations in her childhood family about inni’s and outi’s the belly buttons always, now her daughters one with sandy blond hair, hazel green eyes and olive in her skin and an inni and her younger daughter fairer, with some red in her blond hair and dark blue eyes and an outi.

She is going to quit smoking just to spite him the father of her children who she hates and has been married to for almost 10years, she will quit or buy her own so that he will not have control over her. She hates the control. She hates this. She is scared to be alone and she has no money and they have children and she has realized that it is too hard to be out there and to date and to figure this all out is the only way, is this where Jeremy comes into it?

“You have hit me many times he says.” I see where this is going she thinks to herself, I hate his weakness AND ITS NOT TRUE and just in thoses words she has been turned into a violent women who beats her husband just in those words just before her eyes he is a different person speaking to someone else that is not her, yes she yells but when he said that she new it had to be over this was just an untruth beyond words and then at that moment  she hates him so much. Yes to say let’s have therapy together and she says to him, “I have never been in a relationship like this before where you passively passive aggressively say things and I then becomes incensed with rage and cannot control it so I walk away so that and the children don’t see it and it happens all the time over and over again,” and he then smiles and sees that she cares and she hates him more and wants to hurt him even more and starts to yell and he seems totally mellow and it goes almost unseen then we see this is what happens it’s passive aggressive it’s finally all clear he pushes a button instead of saying what he is feeling then he says “What? I didn’t do anything. I didn’t mean that. You read into it.” And he changes the tone he said it in and then nothing comes of it except she goes ballistic and he acts like the victim and the kids see him and the innocent and her as the crazy screamer and he is left in the clear with the force field around him and never says what he might have meant. Nothing is figured out, he never ever lets her in ever and he never says anything that might be behind it. He always, always says he meant nothing by it: The jab.

Jeremy was different, he introduced saying “weird” when something weird happens or was said that he thought was weird, then it can be explained and when he yelled at her there was a moment of connection of warmth because she used the term “weird” back to him, a term she had used her whole life, and they figured and him saying she had to be more decisive on the beach was strange when she said to him did he feel badly because her youngest daughter and he wanted to walk and her oldest and her wanted to drive, then things worked out differently and he was in the car yelling that she “needed to get a job” and that she “keeps complaining that she cannot deal” with her two year old and she says she “doesn’t just want any job”. She sees she is hard work too, but fuck are they hard work, Jeremy and Orlando her husband, seriously hard work. She longs for the week when he is not around.

The night is dark and wet and she has her small black umbrella that Jeremy bought her when they went on their date to the Thai Elephant. Orlando, the father of her children, was there too but they still went out a bit, her and Jeremy that is. She see’s now that she can go out with lots of people and it doesn’t mean that sex will be good she doesn’t want sex anyway. When she and Jeremy ended upstairs together that night it wasn’t what she wanted. He had been working out and all but he was just like who she had been with before when she was in her twenties in Edinburgh for the film festival, it was great sex but not something she could live with anyway he found his morals and got to see her so that was all fine. How is she meant to find the way in with her husband when he covers her in sorrow or is a stick insect or is a boy how can it ever work?

It was like they were dating and getting ready for their relationship while they were with her husband because it is too hard to get out there it is too hard.

The thing is they can’t even do coke again, he was so ugly and she can’t have sex like that and it just turns it all into something so ugly and that has to stop, it all has to stop like before the whole reason they moved to Toronto was to get out of the drugs scene in London, if they go back will it still be there, what if they end up together him and his friend Jeremy they end up doing drugs and being together? Not like sexually but Jeremy did keep sticking his ass out and she was like “what are you doing?” That is not right she shook her head and he said “thank you” at the Thai restaurant and yes she wasn’t listening to everything he was saying not because it wasn’t interesting but because she has travelled too, she has been places too, she has things to say too. He looked at her and loved her then, “we went out just then” he said. She is just learning about love.

This is the opium war this is the 1839-1843 opium war the Nanking treaty that lead to Hong Kong going to Britain until 1997. This is the most interesting thing and always has been. Britain had been trading with China for tea but china wanted nothing from Britain so they traded gold. Tea took off in popularity in that it became the national drink and it was something they sent down the mine shafts to the workers, the miners, to show them they cared. When they tried to trade wool etc., for the tea because they were losing so much money China said no. To this Britain went to their colony, the colonized in India, and took opium from there and started trading opium for tea. After years of this and the Chinese becoming addicted to opium the Chinese Government cracked down on it and tried to rid the trade. Britain could not accept this and went to war with China for the tea. They won and took Hong Kong in the treaty of Nanking.

She lived this year when the treaty ended and Hong Kong went back. The rain pelted down hard and the only sound was her wood heels against the cement. She was off tea and back on coffee but she was trading pot and wine for rum and coke just for a little while. She bumped into the musician couple.

“Where are you headed?”

“Singing in the market how about you?”

“I’ll go with you then I need to find my way back to that.”

She tried to kiss Jeremy on the sofa, on the mouth and he said “cheek” which she supposed much, much later could be nice too just one not two like the French or three like the Dutch like she was use to but just one, she was used to kissing her father and sister on the mouth like the Europeans do, this is closeness this is the way. “My sister, my father!” She screamed after swooping in for the kill. She was so angry and swerved up like a bird at the water having missed its fish.

Before, when they were visiting her husband’s mother in England Jeremy had come for a visit she was wet for the first time then and was with him every time after that. He came to tell them about his girlfriend and they almost made out behind the shed. Then he teased her saying “ewww are you wet?” in that cruel way and she ran off down the garden back into the house. That night when he left to go home as he always did and had done many times before in many configurations of women and children, they kissed in the side room to say good bye and there was an explosion beyond anything she had ever felt before, his ex was on the phone and he was leaving to his new girlfriend but they would always have that.

, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

No Comments