John Prine

John Prine died today. He was my first concert. He wrote every song I love that I don’t remember who wrote. He wrote this poem, too, but he wrote it through me. I’ll miss him. One day I’d like to see him again.

I had a feeling I could be someone.

You’ll only feel by listening 

to the same song

fifty versions

but none better than the downtown boy

with hair like Dylan

accepted to Yale when I was

but dropped out 

and now plays to a Farmers’ market audience–

an empty picnic blanket and me. 

At 24 years old,

he looks more like twelve

and sings folk like a wizened bluesman.

Will he go anywhere

or stay in Fairfax forever,

wearing the same uncool shoes

as the classmate I bullied in 4th grade. 

If America’s misfits come to San Francisco

and SF’s go to Oakland,

where do Oakland’s go?

We’re only fifteen miles north of The City,

but you can believe in the stars having a plan for you

and we’ll still believe in you.  

If you move too quick,

you hit the speed of loneliness

like a too-fast car,

breaking the sound barrier,

collapsing into yourself,

emptying out.

We all feel that way. 

Some of us become. 

We all pass away. 

Travel Log 191021 (Redacted Version)

Start: [Redacted], Pflugerville, TX

End: [Redacted], Pflugerville, TX

Delicious Delectables: 

  • Ate 4 cans of Campbell’s Chicken Noodle Soup. 
  • Ate a handful of Lindor Lindt White Chocolate Truffles. 
  • Sous vided steak for David & Stephanie. Muy delicioso!

Quotent Quotables: 

  • [NAUGHT!]

Real Realizations: 

  • Didn’t go farther than 0.5 miles from the house today. Drank red wine.
    • Both contribute to my sadness this evening. 
  • [Redacted] got steak lodged in his esophagus. That’s 3 major dangerous events in my life involving people eating too large pieces of steak. Clearly it fucking happens. CUT YOUR STEAK SMALL, PEOPLE!

Exciting Events: 

  • Renegotiated the [redacted] deal. Now get [redacted] & the equivalent of [redacted] in equity. Feel fine about it. 
  • Worked on [redacted] for 2.25 hours. 
  • Completed an [redacted] chapter & sent it back. 
  • Defeated level 7 in Hogwarts Battle. KILLIN’ IT! 

Alluring Activities: 

  • Halloween in New Orleans! 
  • [Redacted]’s birthday party in St Louis. Should be OFF THE HIZZOUSE. 
  • Writing a response letter to [redacted]. I miss her. 

The Heaviest I’ve Ever Been

I stepped on the scale today: 188.4lbs, a new record for personal mass. I showered today, too, for the first time in 11 days. My facial hair and fingernails are growing long. My van is disorganized. I say: LET ‘EM GO. 

I’ve heard of someone “letting themself go.” It typically means, “This person used to be attractive. Now they’re fat.” 

I could hit 200lbs. Perhaps I will.

Is this what happens when I release myself? When I live without restrictions? Instead of eating strict carnivore or low carb, it’s ice cream and pizza and…, oh my!

I could be a bigger man. Right now I’m just a bigger man. 

I worry. I don’t want to fall into a hole I can’t get out of. I don’t think I’m there yet though. And I’m enjoying digging. 

Stood Up, Standing Down

I daydreamed about her all day. She stood me up.

We agreed she would call shortly after 10pm. At 11:15, I call her. She says she’ll call me back by 1am. 2:52 and still no call.

I feel like a seventeen-year-old British woman out of Jane Austen, leaning on the windowsill, complaining to her cat:

And I told him, too. I told him I’d be gazing wistfully, like all the proper ladies do in the books. He must have known he had my heart to break.

He broke a promise. He tallies his emotional work of writing a letter at more than my hurt feelings. What price would that fetch for half of me?

The breakage will heal, but in a hard and crusty scar that prevents the next lover going so deep.

We must inform him it hurts my future husband and me, and insist he be more careful with hearts in the future.

This post was inspired by the song Mis, sent by my friend Omri. What song would you want me to write on? Link it in the comments. 

Sometimes I write in pictures.

Yes, you!
Look at this guy:
A short, squat gnome
With a big paunched belly
And an erect penis
And neck
This text is here purely for formatting reasons
Born a dewdrop
That jiggled on a leaf,
Slurped up by a ladybug
That hums above the field.
Clouds billow, foretold shocks:
“Don’t hum begrudging agreement.
It’s not what you’ll want tomorrow-
Just what they demand today.”
This text is here purely for formatting reasons
He writes from a place southwest of my sternum
Aflame from rotting friends.
He wants to show you.
Take a look?
Or run.
“Please don’t run.”

When people ask “How are you feeling?”, I wish they wanted this sort of answer.

When people ask “How are you feeling?”, I wish they wanted this sort of answer:

I have this…

Deep, rich, weeping.

Eyes tight, throat… Tingling down my back and a dry mouth.

I shiver though I don’t move.

A cold breeze passes through my head.

A cold breath, a dry mouth, a buzz across the back; a tight lower back, furrowed brow.


Wide, blubbery second chin.  Dry mouth, fast breath.

Stab right shoulder, under scapula.

Stab throbs.

Furrowed Brow.

Stab sinks.

I’ll test this sometime: dropping in and describing my felt sensations in real time.


I’ll test it 6 times in different contexts (because I’ll only get comfortable after the first few experiments).

Then I guess you won’t be pulling the plug? 

As my sister drives to Reno, I explain to her and my mother that I don’t want to be resuscitated. Nor ventilated. Nor any other life-preserving “–ated” with a low forecasted-quality-of-life.

They reject my request, which Mom communicates by saying, “I didn’t hear you…” as though pretending not to hear it will avoid it happening. I hadn’t expected that response.

Why would I rather have my plug pulled?

  1. Low quality of life for those in such a state?
  2. Comfort with the idea of death?
  3. Existence as a societal detriment?

The first and second seem unlikely: In most cases, humans adjust to our circumstances, and comfort with the idea still doesn’t make it desirable. The third seems reasonable, but assumes a low likelihood on me becoming a high-positive force again.

Perhaps the gruesome images of end-of-life patients that I saw earlier today impacted me. Perhaps in a soberer state, I’d rather live as long as possible in case medical science improves sufficiently to salvage me. If I prioritize my life, this seems the most reasonable conclusion.

In any case, my sister feels uncomfortable talking about these plans, but they’re valuable plans to have.

I was trying to prioritize them. I’ve heard tell of family members being in difficult situations because they didn’t know the patient’s wishes. A large part of this explanation was to spare them that difficulty, but they’d apparently rather have that situation than this conversation. And I don’t actually care enough to press the issue or put a legal solution in place. In case it ever comes up, whatever they choose is fine by me.

We did, however, agree on one thing: after we’re dead, dispose of us in the cheapest way possible. Now, I’d also like to add: dispose of me in a funny way. I’d like to go out doing what I love.

After a month or two or three or four, I’ll finally admit I wanted you more

When we dated, I hated the Satan we created,

But being dumped has lumped those bumps into the rough, tough suffering of a motherfucker.

After a month or two or three or four, I’ll finally admit I wanted you more

Than I was willing—how thrilling and chilling,

But I was the villain, or maybe I still am.


The fast past we lasted unmasked a part of my heart; it started smarting.

That caressing mess tested this repressed hesitant lesser

Who now piles miles of style on humble, tumbling mumbles to crumble your wall, crawling his all

To your mind-wracking shack, where a taxing hacks dances without pants, hands landing in bands on yours, the shores of sores that hastened mace to our faces, disgracing us apace,

Then the end, when I bended to mend but you send us friends, me in tender shreds.


I’m sad and mad for a lad’s behavior, but you’re no savior.

It’s unfair, but sharing care would tear at you more, so formerly yours will be sore for the pair.

When you miss kissing me, sissy, I’ll be listening, glistening with desire, no liar—

Just a failed male who paled in your presence, too hesitant.

I’m told more bold would leave me cold but I’m old enough to scoff.

It’s rough to be cuffed to a shelf of hell. Who can tell when I’ll fell

For another lover who recovers my suffering.

Just empty space—dear Lord, what a waste! This place doesn’t taste of your scent so I’m bent with pent up emotion, an ocean of notions.


No lies, just a tired writer’s inspired cries,

Pining in lines to know you’re trying too—

It’s hard for you. You miss me and list me as a risk to stop kissing.


Now shown, I bemoan roaming the loneliest road,

No shores of your pores that tore at my core.

So hey, Lady grey, I’d pay you today: explain pain in a way

That tames this crew, say you I matter too.

I feel the urge to text my exes, “Marry me?”

I feel the urge to text my exes, “Marry me?”

It’s not a serious question. I’m not a serious person. I’d text them for the same reason I took the side running path this evening to follow a guy wandering down it to pee. I wanted to see his reaction as I approached, catching him with his pants down. ‘Twas a sweet and savory surprise and amazement with impressively little (I saw no) fear. I wanted him to doubt for a moment the reality of the world around him.  I didn’t stop beside him or start up a conversation—that would make him feel unduly uncomfortable—but continued running as though our meeting were happenstance.

As long as I can remember, I’ve considered myself the Jester. Not the king or ingénue but the comic relief. The one who enthralls the world by showing people a side of themselves they forget exists. The side that compulsively touches every street sign and picks up a tree branch to smash it in half. The side that caws at women squatting across the creek and still, at 25, enjoys high-pitched “ting” sounds. The side we all share that’s exhilarated by destruction.

I’ve had this notion—text “Marriage?”—more than once. I’ve never done it, because it would hurt a person and ruin a relationship.

My relationships with exes have recently lost their importance. What if I picked a small one—one of my many lesbians, like the woman who wanted my babies at eighteen and has now been married to another woman for the past three years? What if I tried it–just a little, you know, to see how it feels? It’s mean, yes, but also I’m curious. Great art often ruffles the comfortable and comforts the ruffled, and I’m clearly quite ruffled in this here mood. Some people simply want to fluff the world. 

I pranked a friend last year, setting him up for a surprise lunch with Mormon missionaries. I thought he’d enjoy it. I never lied to either party, but also didn’t tell each who was coming. My friend was minorly annoyed that I’d wasted his time and majorly peeved I’d been rude to the Mormons—as he put it, “by using them in a prank.” I’m sure the Mormons were fine—we remain friends to this day. They received a free lunch and a warmer lead than their typical method of knocking on random doors. Still, I miscalculated. The friend didn’t appreciate it. I miss my former image of that friendship. I miss the friendship I thought we had. I miss feeling less alone, less one-of, less off.

In college, a friend turned my room into its mirror image. He moved every item to its exact opposite location. Clever prank. Great friend. I had to move each item back. Every prank comes with a cost. I wish I had more friends who played pranks on me.

When life feels like today, I’d even take an engaging negative: the loss of a beloved pet or someone breaking my heart. But those take investment—devoting enough love to something that losing it hurts. I’ve had trouble doing that since my most recent breakup. I’ve claimed it’s because I haven’t found a new someone. It’s really because I haven’t been looking.