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Cool Cervixes (Cervices?)

The cervix (up close): http://www.beautifulcervix.com/cervix-photo-galleries/photos-of-cervix/ . I think mine would be too shy to show itself on the internet.

Dear Tim,

This letter is about gender and fashion. The other day while watching Project Runway, I heard you chastise one of the designers for making jodhpurs. Aghast, you asked him, "what woman do you know who wants to make her thighs look bigger? To that bit of gender policing, I have to say this:

For being as big of a homo as you are, you're sure quick this season to kick off any designers who make clothes that look too queer. Please tell Heidi she's right: fashion designers are selling to a market: heterosexual, middle class women (and those who love them!). So, I thought I'd give you a little market feedback from the white, queer femme subset:

I like my thighs thick for protection, strung and humming, laid out like a superhero is (keep the tights, get rid of the unrealistically shaped breasts). And my breasts I like strapped down, just a little bit snug to my chest, ever so slightly androgynous, impish. This is the kind of wardrobe a femme's got to make herself.

Regards,
Violet

Oh, how about a list?

1. My laptop is resting on The Practical Gardener's Encyclopedia, bought from the bargain shelf this summer.

2. I've got a feast of perennials: mums, coneflowers, daisies, spiderwort, pincushion flower, dianthus, astilbe, colombine, forget me nots... that's just the front yard.

3. About to go back to school, I've taken to researching everything from the Lite Brite (Remember that, kids?) to How to Clean Suede.

4. At the Ritual, we spun until my arms stretched, hands holding fast, and my voice sang until I had no more air.

5. The bulldog was sick, and is now better. Don't scare me like that, kid.

6. I've been writing a zine, and am teaching zines in my writing class this year!

7. I feel very calm, like I've healed some.

On the land,

my job is to be useful. I'm small enough to scramble onto someone's back to rig up the tarp, and always carry several functional items with me. While there this year, Heather borrowed a golf ball to massage her sore feet and Elizabeth a satin ribbon to belt her satin and tulle dress for the informal Night Stage promenade.

Back Outside

I returned from the Michigan Womyn's Music Festival last night late. The transition this year has been hard, ranging from sheer rage at patriarchy, white man's culture, to deep sadness, resolve, hope. What I miss most about those woods is the noise: women loudly proclaiming, beating drums, chanting, singing, in conversation with other women, crunching and creaking down those wood paths wordlessly, the swish and clap of thighs dancing. Today I'm gathering all those voices, holding them.

Fat Acceptance Newsletters

Hey! Someone I love had an abusive, fat phobic experience recently with a "doctor" and we're pissed off about it. Please comment below with the names of any fat-positive and fat-acceptance newsletters and information. We're going to send them to their office.

Please repost.

On Learning to Look

I glance out the upstairs square window, which has an old-looking gold latch and would swing out toward me if my work table weren't packed tight with jars of baubles and buttons, fabric scraps and books stacked in a lopsided pile. This room is mine, cluttered and full of potential. I sit on an unforgiving chair, knees to chest, press my face near the cool glass to squint and absorb the sun as it sets.

I wish it were closer.

This morning in the shower, I noticed the sharp bone that protruded from the side of my knee this summer, gone. Looking down, the curve of breast and thigh. I'm sure that desire and appetite are lovers. Sure that reading is a hunger for connection. Sure that writing is the best way to be real. I feel real and fragile and brave, like I want to cry or call out or uncurl, relax gut and neck and legs, let go.

I am not fast-thinking enough to capture this time in stories. Instead, I want snapshots, or poetry strung like vines winding around an image. Sometimes I use words like bricks. Sometimes I use them as a type of nakedness. My muscles are coiled like ropes. Unwind me. Learn to find me in these words.

How do we learn to look at ourselves? (Practice in the mirror).

Dear LiveJournal,

Lean into this letter. Read it like a memory, an invitation, an incantation.

Eight years ago, you and I met. You: young, reckless and insecure. Me: your mirror image. We believed writing could connect us, shape us, make us real. We believed, like early loves do, that love meant symmetry and disclosure, rather than seeing the god in each other, and the fear. Oh, how we played at love then: revealing too much, then retreating to silence, making a sideshow of our pain. Here, I am busted up and brokenhearted. Here, I am lonesome. Here I am alone.

Is it something I wrote? That's probably self-centered, but really, do you miss the desperation with which I loved you then? The hunger? We were fierce in our love, if unpracticed. Please don't go. Pleading is uncharacteristic and probably unfair, but baby listen, I gave you so many of my sentences. I typed until my fingers ached and I will.

Sure, there's nothing more poetic than an ending, but don't leave just for the sake of art. Don't leave for the sake of lesson. You don't gotta promise me forever, just stay awhile, let me emboss these words on the curve of your hip, make you forget you ever thought to go.

Love,
Katie

scribbled on scraps of paper

Holidays: let us all: gather, rejoice, consume, remember, capture, depart.


"Welcome Home"


January: the month and its virtues: crisp, not as grey as February, movement between chill and thaw.


Right shoulder, I-96 east, entire tree uprooted. I am a person who depends on putting down roots.


To Do:

1. Mail thank you
2. Buy books
3. Get massage?
4. Write more.


Pain Level, a comparison: Muscles like ropes, like fists, like rocks.

There is No Art in This Update

The pain didn't come till this morning, not a searing pain, but a dull, deep throb. I strained my trapezius, the large muscle that begins at the back of your skull and connects to your shoulder blade and the end of your upper spine. The incident in question probably occurred while attending C's overdue birthday Ikea blowout, where I reached for a seven-foot-long box containing a bright red bookcase in an overhand, pulling fashion, an unfortunate mistake. I've always been the one who carries the heaviest things.

A phone call with my father, his voice creaking up at the end of his sentences, strained: They'd better not take my pension, Kal. I gave them 35 goddamn years of my life. News of the auto bailout came in today, complete with a heroic picture of Mr. Bush announcing his "rescue plan.

My bookshelves are pitching forward, bowed in the center. This semester, I'll find the money to buy seventeen new books, stack them to the ceiling, curl up underneath, looking up.