“We say our work” by Sasha on her porch


Thursday May 28, 2015
10:38pm
5 minutes
Overheard at Lansdowne Station

We say our work is nothing more than what it is
Be here now
Bask in the sunlight
When the mud’s in season
Don’t runaway
Quartz on the soles of our shoes
We sing
Ah-hum-ah
Calypso on the radio
Deep in work
We still get up and dance
The mint is taking over the whole garden
We add it to breakfast, lunch and dinner
You make the bed this morning
Tucking a wish under my pillow
We finally start to plan our wedding
Peonies and bare feet
Stretching together
Offering howls of love and future
to the August moon

“The animals leave the shores” by Sasha on the 99 going West


Wednesday May 27, 2015
11:16pm
5 minutes
Kimminkus Tuft
Kim Minkus


The animals leave the shores and all that’s left is the ebb and the flow
The sun slips like a salamander behind a cloud
Peeks out when the time is right
Five hundred ways to say “thank you”
And ten thousand ways to say “love”
The animals tread water when they’re lonely
and whisper comfort in a language we’ll never understand

Morning comes with the butterfly lightness
The animals stretch awake
Sunflowers opening
Reaching for fresh water

“legs crossed and notebooks open.” by Julia on her patio


Fridayy May 29, 2015
9:43m
5 minutes
Intro to Happiness
J. Allyn Rosser


Brooke had that lisp she was self conscious about so she was avoiding esses this week. Her best friend Phoebe told Brooke that she would say all the hard ess words for her until she was comfortable doing them on her own. Brooke wanted to trade with Phoebes, make it nice and equal, so she offered her the small Doritos snack that her dad had snuck into her lunch that morning when Brooke’s mom was putting Leon into his new leg braces. She knew Phoebe didn’t get Doritos snacks in her lunches, just sandwiches that smelled of bananas. Phoebe liked to swing her lunch bag around and she was always bruising the nice yellow bananas her mom packed for her.

“We say our work” by Julia at her desk


Thursday May 28, 2015
12:18am
5 minutes
Overheard at Lansdowne Station

Our work is good when it’s good
And when it’s not
Because our work
is whatever we need to keep going
even when it feels pained and full of punishment
It’s still ours
It’s still ours
Out hands and our hearts
Our hands and our burning bleeding hearts
When we wake from a bad dream
We shake imagination from our backs
Do we listen to what the muse is telling us?
Or do we toss her recklessly to the floor
Where she can’t bother us anymore?
It’s there
Our work
even though it feels secondary
It’s still ours
It’s still ours
Our hands and our hearts
Our hands and our thumping drumming hearts
Say hello to her
pick her off the earth
And tell her that she’s welcome here
Tell her that she’s beautiful

“The animals leave the shores” by Julia on her bed


Wednesday May 27, 2015
2:34am
5 minutes
Kimminkus Tuft
Kim Minkus


The animals leave the shores
They pack their things and go
To where nobody knows
But they follow the pull
And when the night falls down
And blankets the day
Wraps it up in a starry shield
Protects it from going away
They sleep
With the little ones in the armpit of the elders’
They sleep
With the little ones curled up tight in the heart of the pack
They don’t hold back
From giving them everything that they need
They sleep
The animals they move along
Trying to chase the sun
Don’t expect anything from anyone
They know they’ll soon be done
Their travels
documented in the flesh of the earth
Their tracks
are paintings Mother Nature hangs up in her living room

“Just go in the direction where there is no direction” by Sasha at Culprit Coffee


Tuesday May 26, 2015 at Culprit Coffee
3:37pm
5 minutes
Forbidden Rumi
Tr. By Nevit O. Ergin and Will Johnson


blurring past a cityscape
hoping for a swift mistake
making friends with the unknown
just go
in that direction
forward
or really
now
now is that direction
not a direction but
oh well
fishing in the ocean deep
make a promise you can keep
evening primrose kisses
blood’s all washed off
the greyhound lurches and you spurt a prophecy
i love you most in the rain
i love you most when you’re hurtin’
i love you most when i’m
now
let’s take that as our last name

“Just go in the direction where there is no direction” by Julia at her desk


Tuesday May 26, 2015
11:57am
5 minutes
Forbidden Rumi
Tr. By Nevit O. Ergin and Will Johnson


Like the wind, she speaks, she says
Oooh ooh, yes, yes
Calmly without rushing
No goal exists but to breathe in
every single moment
she whispers through my hair
Hums a day song worth remembering
Oooh ooh, yes, yes
And they say go where the wind blows you
And they say if you’re moved travel alongside her
I don’t know where she’s taking me
But I feel cradled in her billowy arms
And I feel welcomed by her carefree smile
Shhh shh, yes, yes
She reminds me to take time
She reminds me to inhale
and stop worrying
and exhale
and stop worrying
Shhh shh, yes, yes
I’m here for you until you get to where you’re going
Don’t run…
Glide
Don’t push…
Float
And the air is changed beneath me
And the air is changed right through me

“new hipster beer” by Julia on her patio


Monday May 25, 2015
4:03pm
5 minutes
from a beer tasting

I didn’t want to go to Portland and see all the hipsters wearing their hipster gear and drinking their new hipster beer. I didn’t have a better answer for wanting to stay at home other than I just didn’t want to go, but Reilly was being such a nag about it, asking me a thousand times a day, “why, Elyse, why don’t you want to go? You hiding something, Elyse? You got better things planned, Elyse?”
My God she was such a rat terrier. I guess when you bail on a plan 2 days before you’re supposed to hit the road, people are bound to get weird about shit. I just never really wanted to go from the beginning but I didn’t admit that part out loud when we were all contributing our halves to the housing and the “unpredictable” fund. It doesn’t feel so good saying it now–Note To Self: Always be up front so that I never have to feel whatever it is I’m feeling now, again.
It just saves everybody a healthy dose of disheartened confusion if we all just say what we need at the very moment that we need it. And guilt too. It saves me guilt.

“new hipster beer” by Sasha at Higher Grounds


Monday May 25, 2015 at Higher Grounds
4:03pm
5 minutes
A beer tasting

L. orders me a drink, a new hipster beer, a tallboy can, and I don’t have the heart to tell him I don’t like beer. I drink it fast, for that reason, to taste it less. “Let’s get nachos,” I say, figuring if I already drank beer, cheese won’t hurt. “Cool…” It’s his favourite word. “Cool.”

I regret sleeping with him the second he’s on top of me. “Uh, I need to go to the bathroom.” He rolls off. “Cool.” I put on a hockey jersey that’s over the back of his desk chair, hoping to endear him. I don’t know why. Why do I want to endear him? I can’t help it.

The tiles are cool under my feet. I look for something to wash myself with and find shaving cream and toothpaste. Shaving cream it is.

I don’t go back to his room. I leave my clothes – my new bra, my ripped black undies, by cutoffs and my maroon tank top – I leave it all. Who cares. Thank god my purse is with my shoes. Thank god. In a hockey jersey and flip-flops, I hail a taxi.

“I’ve got to go” by Sasha on the 16 heading West


Sunday May 24, 2015
5:13pm
5 minutes
When I’m away
The Colourist


Marg died on Wednesday. I got the phone call when I was trying to decide which olive oil to buy, in the oil aisle at the IGA. “Hello?” It was Henry. “Hi Henry.” I looked at one bottle and then another and then another. “I’m so sorry to say, but Marg passed today.” “Passed?” “Passed on…” I opened a bottle and drank and drank and drank until I was sick. “Hello? Honey? Are you there?!” “NO ONE EVEN TOLD ME SHE WAS SICK!!!” “You two were out of touch.” “I would’ve liked the opportunity to say goodbye, Henry. Jesus.” And then, I puked, all over the oil aisle, a whole bottle of the stuff, a whole bottle. I dropped the phone and it shattered. So much for the fifty dollar case. I could hear Henry still, saying, “Honey?! Honey?!” A clerk came with a mop and a bucket, a kind face, “Honey is in Aisle Seven,” he said, quietly, to the disembodied voice. I lay down and pressed my face into the cool linoleum.

“sometimes you’re like a stranger to me” by Sasha at her kitchen table


Saturday May 23, 2015
10:39pm
5 minutes
Stranger
Alfie Conor


He has dreams of being chased by the man in the black robe with the white fleck as his neck
That space
That small hollow space
He runs and runs and he can’t out-run and he’s down and then he’s up
In those big hands
Big veins
Big tongue
Big hurt
The forest floor changed those nights
Became angry and heavy and unkind
The pine needles pricking
The owl calls like a nightmare

One hundred and fifty thousand children
He and his army
His Sisters
His Brothers
Turtle Island cries elephant tears
An ocean of sobs
I turn my face away

Got a dollar I’m hungry
I don’t say anything
Got a dollar I’m thirty
Thirst won’t quench with the brown stuff
I don’t say anything

Truth
Reconciliation
My heart
Those hearts
Broke
Broke
KIN
Sisters
Brothers

“evil, greedy, deluded, fatally flawed.” by Sasha at Vancouver General Hospital


Friday May 22, 2015
1:07pm
5 minutes
Talking Masks
Adam Seelig


Take off that stupid mask, Bobo.
No.
Take it off!
Nawwww…
How are your Mama and I supposed to tell you something very important when – ?
I won’tttt!
Listen here.
No.
We are selling the farm and moving to the city.
What?
You heard me.
I didn’t!
Take off your mask!
Okay, fiiiine…
We are selling the farm and moving to the city. Your mother got a job at a school in the West End.
I’m staying.
You can’t stay.
Why not?
Who would take care of you?
Mona!
Mona is a dog. She can’t care for a boy.

“Dessert is an apricot tart” by Sasha at Harvest Community Foods


Thursday 21, 2015 at Harvest Community Foods
3:02pm
5 minutes
SAVEUR magazine
issue 152


Maggie listens to the Cranberries. “Zombie! Zombie! Zombie! Zombie!” She doesn’t make eye contact on the bus, but sings along, like a bee buzzing, not loud enough to disturb, just loud enough to wonder. She wears a light blue T-shirt that reads, “I’ve got a heavenly body”. She wears it ironically. Her cell phone rings but she ignores it. The display broke seven months ago and she never knows who is calling and she never knows if she wants to speak with them. It’s probably the bank. Or her mother. She gets off at Main St. and walks north, towards the water. She starts the song again. “Zombie! Zombie! Zombie! Zombie!” She sees Neil but pretends that she doesn’t. He stops her. “Maggie, hey!” She reluctantly takes off her headphones. “Oh. Hi.” “What’re you up to?” “Oh, just on my way somewhere…” He furrows his brows. “You’ve been avoiding my phone calls.” “I don’t really believe in phones. I never answer mine. I don’t even know why I have it…” She takes her phone out of her purse and throws it over her shoulder. Neil laughs and then looks worried and runs to pick it up. “You broke it!” He says, accusatory. “Why do you care?”

“I’ve got to go” by Julia on her patio


Sunday May 24, 2015
8:17pm
5 minutes
When I’m away
The Colourist


Adrienne and Lara were sitting on the bar stools in Adrienne’s parents’ basement. Only Lara’s chair swiveled and Adrienne secretly wished Lara wasn’t on it.
“I want to talk about sex,” Lara suddenly announced.
“Uhh..I don’t know–”
“I think I have to lose my virginity by the time I’m 16. I have to or I’ll just die. ”
Adrienne was uncomfortable. She had made a pact with her cousin, Tina, that they’d both wait until..well..they were older. They briefly discussed holding out for college.
“Didn’t you hear me, Age? What’s your year?”
“Yeah. Same. 16. Or I’ll just die…”
Lara was spinning around and around. Adrienne watched as her anger grew.

“sometimes you’re like a stranger to me” by Julia on her patio


Saturday May 23, 2015
11:44pm
5 minutes
Stranger
Alfie Conor


Came into the bedroom and the first thing that made me worry was your smell. You don’t like to shower at night. So why did you smell clean and sneaky and lying and suspicious?
I smelled you with a new nose. A detective’s nose. Unwilling to rest until the case is solved.
The second thing that was cause for concern was your humming. For someone who prefers to whistle. I found it peculiar. I found it unsettling. Your humming was beautiful. That was unsettling too.
I heard you with new ears. A dog’s ears. Unable to ignore the information traveling at a higher frequency right above my head.
Then, the last thing I noticed…the last thing…

“9AM-6PM” by Sasha on her couch


Wednesday May 20, 2015
11:13am
5 minutes
from a parking sign

Kev catches me sleeping at my desk. He taps me on the back and I sit up quickly, sure there’s drool on my chin. “Shit,” I whisper. “Genevieve is not impressed, Molly,” Kev says, and for the first time since I’ve known him I see genuine concern on his face. “What’s going on?” I scan my desk for water, or coffee, or liquid, and Kev reaches across to his desk and gives me the last quarter of his orange Gatorade. I don’t really like Gatorade, and I don’t like faux orange, but I figure, all things considered I should just drink it up and say “Thanks”. “I’m having trouble sleeping… at night… and then I get to work and I’m – …” “Molly. Drink a Red Bull. Do your job.” “Woah. That’s a bit harsh, no?”

“evil, greedy, deluded, fatally flawed.” by Julia at her desk


Friday May 22, 2015
11:21pm
5 minutes
Talking Masks
Adam Seelig


After I wash my face at night, I don’t really want to see other humans until morning. It’s not that I don’t want them to see my face unmasked, without colours and expressions painted on, it’s more than that. It’s about time and space and holding that for me in a sacred way which for some odd reason at any other point in the day doesn’t feel as possible. Maybe I’m greedy. Maybe I want my born like this, woke up like this, go to bed like this face for me and only me. Maybe it makes me feel closer to the earth and to my mother and to my truth. It’s strange because this ritual has turned me into a monster. One knock at my door and I’m hissing like a cat with her claws out ready to pounce. I can’t say “Nobody’s home” or “Nobody that you will recognize is here”. Though I am good at it, I don’t want to lie. So I answer with my secret night time alone time me time face, and there’s a scowl where my lightness just was, a cold stare where my openness used to be.

“believe it or not” by Sasha at the kitchen table in Horseshoe Bay


Tuesday May 19, 2015
10:49pm
5 minutes
A Ripley’s bus ad

A machine beeps. It attaches to your arm. You’re sleeping, snoring softly. One hand rests on your belly. Up and down, up and down. May, the nurse on shift comes in and checks your vitals. I’m halfway through my book. Every few minutes someone new is wheeled in, or out. Some have their eyes half closed, in between this world and another one. Some crank their heads around, talking with the orderlies. Most look like baby squirrels – new, ruffled hair, vulnerable. You tell me to kiss you and I do. You taste like anesthetic and sleep.

“Dessert is an apricot tart” by Julia on her bed


Thursday May 21, 2015
11:40pm
5 minutes
SAVEUR magazine
issue 152


And happiness is a sailing ship
the ocean strong
the wind fair
gliding across the water
a beacon of hope
a sign of peace
we all tilt our strained chins to the earth
and we sigh
breathe out
that’s the final taste
that’s the summer sun warming up the frigid ground
And dessert is an apricot tart
the filling sweet
the pastry light
being passed around the after party
a moment of indulgence
a gesture of great care
we all throw our anchored heads back against the sofa
and we laugh

“9AM-6PM” by Julia at her desk


Wednesday May 20, 2015
12:33am
5 minutes
from a parking sign

That’s when I’m awake and dreaming about being so much better.
Wishing I had taken out the trash.
Wishing I had eaten breakfast on the back porch.
Wishing I had cleaned my house last night so I could wake up with it ready.
That’s when I spend time thinking about what food I could eat.
How excited I’ll get when I plan a delicious feast.
But really just eat pickled eggplant and chili bean paste from the jar.
And call that a proper meal.
All day.
From 9AM-6PM when the rest of the world is out there making a living.
I’m in here thinking about how one day I’ll be making a living.
Instead of making a living now.
Instead of living now.
But there are other dreams too.
Of how tomorrow will be filled with positive and productive and persistent.
How if I can just get through this day.

“believe it or not” by Julia on the 72 going north


Tuesday May 19, 2015
10:45pm
5 minutes
A Ripley’s bus ad

believe it or not we’re here now together
you say you don’t want to believe that cause then it’s harder to let it go
but i’m telling you now that we’re here now together
and the harder you push me the farther i’ll get let go
why wouldn’t you just trust me?
when i say i have a heart built for two
when i say it’s like a bicycle and it carries the both of us?
why can’t you allow me to be exactly how i am
without getting scared of endings and losings and assumings
i’ve never been this happy before either
but i’m not running away
and i’m no trying to convince you that this is too good to be true
you have to listen to what your gut is trying to tell you
all those warm fuzzy tinglings?
they don’t exist there for nothing
and those happy pretty songs that you’re humming
aren’t just an accident either
they’re your feelings and they’re your truth
just the way i paint more when i think of your face
and i can’t help but smile when you cross my mind
i know it’s not normal that doesn’t mean it’s bad
you have to believe me when i tell you the truth before it all goes away
before you see exactly how much better us being here now together is
than what you’ll have when it’s gone

“Reducing your taxes” by Julia on her patio


Monday May 18,2015
10:19pm
5 minutes
http://www.finance.ubc.ca

I met a woman and she was obsessed with money and she gave me her card and it took me a while to realize it but the reason was cause she was an accountant and it dawned on me a couple days later but now it makes sense cause when a woman talks about money that much and with that much authority she must be some professional when it comes to sorting all that stuff out–you know the numbers and the what have yous. I think she was trying to sell me her business cause of the card cause she could hear that I wasn’t too good with all those numbers and terms and she musta thought I was a big dumb man not knowing how to take care of all those financial issues and the like. It got me to thinking of my ex-wife Rosie cause she didn’t know a thing about money and she used to tell me it wasn’t her job to worry about bills and limits and payments and the what have yous and that’s why ours were always such a problem case I didn’t like them either. She used to say that women don’t know money just the way men don’t know gentleness and if we just teamed up then we’d never have to learn the other part cause that’s how God intended it when he looked down on the earth and matched up two people and decided how to make them into a family. This woman with the money she told me real nice that my eyes made her feel things she had never felt before and when she gave me her card and told me to call her I thought for a second maybe she wanted to love me.

“I made this cake” by Julia on her bed


Sunday May 17, 2015
9:44pm
5 minutes
http://www.epicurious.com

I uhh…I made this cake for you. I’ve never made a cake before but I made this. Or like, I tried to, I guess? I mean. Yeah. A cake! For your birthday. And I know your birthday was like, a month ago. But I wasn’t confident enough to try making a cake then so, I didn’t give you anything and I wanted to, but I was embarrassed so I just pretended that you didn’t have a birthday at all so that you wouldn’t..uhh.. not get a cake from me. I also pretended that not even wishing you a happy birthday alongside not making you a cake was an okay thing to do. It wasn’t. It’s weird, it was just what I decided to do. Uhh…You don’t have to eat this even. The cake, obviously. It might not be edible, actually, because I didn’t taste it and I didn’t know how to taste it without wrecking it so I just took a chance and thought, maybe I’ll taste it first when we’re together so in case it’s bad there will be someone there to warn you. So if you want we can do it that way, or I can just stop talking now so you can stop wishing this was a different moment in your life and not the one you have to be in.

“Reducing your taxes” by Sasha on the deck at Horseshoe Bay


Monday May 18,2015
1:30pm
5 minutes
http://www.finance.ubc.ca

Across from him I’m all “What are we going to barbecue for dinner?” And he’s all “How much did you make last year?” I got here forty five minutes ago and I was cracking jokes for the first twenty. Twenty minutes. He’s all “When did you move here?” And I’m all “We got bumped up to first class!” And he doesn’t want my stories. He wants numbers. Okay! Okay. Numbers are a scary place. Numbers under the bed. Numbers hiding in the depths of the sea like the Loch Ness Monster. Numbers are extra time after school because I JUST DON’T GET IT. Give me a soul to sooth and I’ll do it with my eyes closed.

“I made this cake” by Sasha in the bed a Horseshoe Bay


Sunday May 17, 2015
11:56am
5 minutes
http://www.epicurious.com

Let’s make a world where everyone has enough
Where everyone has what they NEED
When they NEED it
Not MORE
Not LESS
Where mother’s can feed babies from their breasts and where father’s can sing lullabies
Let’s make a world where trees are our priests
Where forests are our temples
Where dolphins are our recognized and respected sisters
Where computers and labs and scientists aren’t involved in food growth
Where governments champion children, art, the elderly, green space, democracy
Let’s make a world where we celebrate one another’s successes
Where we dive deep for our bravery and bring it to each interaction
Let’s make a world where we listen
With our whole being
Where we stop
SHUT OFF
TURN DOWN
POWER FAIL
POWER FULL
Let’s make a world where we dance in the street with strangers
Let’s make a world where anyone can marry anyone
Where love is the beginning, middle and end
Let’s make a world with less cars and more bikes
With less oil and more bio-fuel
With less guns and more sunflowers
With less plastic and more recycling
With less hiding and more showing
Let’s make a world where we are all different
And connected
Where we can smile at our complicated understanding about otherness
Where we can remember
Where we can remember
Where we can remind each other
One another
We all come from the same mother
She’s here
But we need to love her up
Love her down
Love her all around
We need to be more radical in our loving
More fearless
We need to embrace change
(it’s always here)
It’s always here
Is it?
Always here?
We are water
Water is polluted
We are polluted
It’s not complicated
It’s a simple story
Why can’t we understand?
Thank you for your bravery
Thank you for your attention
I made this cake for you

“If you don’t come with me,” by Sasha on the deck in Horseshoe Bay


Saturday May 16, 2015
5:13pm
5 minutes
Behind Sad Eyes
Marc Shapiro


Take me back to Memphis where the sky is blue
Take me back to Nashville where the music is new
Take me back to Jerusalem
Take me back to New York
Take me back to Copenhagen
Take me back to County Cork
Take me back to Marrakech where the food’s so good
Take me back to Jasper if we pretty please could
Take me back to Helsinki
Take me back to Saskatoon
Take me back to Kingston
Take me back to Paris for a macaroon

“I’m on Prozac, did I tell you?” by Sasha on the couch in Horseshoe Bay


Friday, May 15, 2015
10:27pm
5 minutes
View From The Dome
Theresa Rebeck


“What are you eating?”
“Nothing…”
“You’re chewing!”
“No I’m not.”
“Stop lying to me – ”
“Leave me along!”
Pause.
“I saw you.”
“You saw me doing what?”
“…”
“…”
“You know!”
“…?”
“I don’t want to say it! It makes it real! It’s gross!”
“Get over yourself.”
“Me?”
“…”
“Eating your toenail clippings might be the nastiest thing I’ve ever seen.”
“Your judgement is toxic.”
“Your TOES are probably toxic!”
“It’s natural. All animals preen.”
“You’re a grown woman. You are not an animal.”
“We are all animals.”
“On my God.”

“If you don’t come with me,” by Julia on her bed


Saturday May 16, 2015
1:56am
5 minutes
Behind Sad Eyes
Marc Shapiro


If you don’t come with me, I’ll toss and turn each night
I’ll hold the space for you to join until you realize that you must
I’ll write you my feelings in haiku and limericks
I’ll dance with someone who may hold me closer
I’ll tease the mind of someone who may enjoy little games better
I’ll eat a tub of peanut butter before the week is through
I’ll take myself to the lake and I’ll be content alone
I’ll pretend you don’t exist until one day you do not

“I’m on Prozac, did I tell you?” by Julia at the Toronto Reference Library


Friday, May 15, 2015 at the Toronto Reference Library
4:27pm
5 minutes
View From The Dome
Theresa Rebeck


Oh I didn’t tell you? I thought I told you. Cause somehow everybody knows so I thought you knew and I thought I told you. Well. I am. So now you know. Anything you want to tell me now? Any burning truths you want to share? Cause I didn’t share just so you would share but I did have a hope that it might open you up to if I went first.
But. No. You don’t reciprocate. And for the record I feel like I’ve made it quite easy for you, but no, that’s okay, everybody’s different, what’s mine is not necessarily yours. Your bag I mean. Your style. Your cup of tea. Your safe is locked tight, hey? Your ‘can’t keep it in anymore cause it’s corroding your insides’ stuff is not like mine–which actually does inflict physical pain on me if I choose not to purge.

“About 10 years ago” by Sasha on the deck in Horseshoe Bay


Thursday May 14, 2015
7:48pm
5 minutes
From a story by Mikal Cronin

about ten years ago I was riding a horse across the desert and trying to remember the names of all my cousins eight five of them EIGHTY FIVE ~ about ten years ago I was stealing gum and wonder bread from the convenience store and blaming it on the homeless drunk ~ about ten years ago I was fucking every man I met not because I wanted to but because I needed to prove to myself and to God that I was worthy ~ about ten years ago I was trying to remember the eight times table ~ about ten years ago I was changing your mind about white chocolate ~ about ten years ago I stopped procrastinating ~ about ten years ago I fell in love with nutritional yeast ~ about ten years ago I got a disease that I’ll have til I die but I’ll never tell anyone but you what it is because I’m a stuck up prude ~ about ten years ago I bought a pink backpack and travelled by foot across india ~ about ten years ago I went a year without sugar ~ about ten

“In the 1950’s the word” by Sasha in Lighthouse Park


Wednesday May 13, 2015 at Dark Horse
2:46pm
5 minutes
The R-Word
Heather Kirn Lanier


When she makes the bed she whispers, “corner’s tucked, sheets flat, duvet fluffy.” She hears Bill leave for work and, as the door locks she quietly calls, “Goodbye!” Gwen waits until eleven, once the dog walker has come and she’s had second cup of coffee to get out the watercolour paints. “A small jar of water on the left, paints on the right…” A whisper, like a feather on her neck. A joint hangs from her lips, but she never lights it. She breathes in quickly, tasting the sweet perfume. Bill has a medical license for his Glaucoma. He leaves joints already rolled in a small ziplock bag in the spice cabinet. She takes them in her mouth, each one, when she paints. “Shhh, little angel,” and a flick of red.

“That’s amazing, honey,” by Sasha at the kitchen table in Horseshoe Bay


Tuesday May 12, 2015
11:21am
5 minutes
Almost Unendurable Beauty
Jocelyn Evie


My son makes pancakes shaped like faces – “That’s amazing, honey.”
My wife wins an award for her azure quilt – “That’s amazing, honey.”
Chris bikes all the way to Whistler – “That’s amazing!”
My mother calls and says that she’s won the lottery – $10,000! “That’s amazing, Mom.”

I shake the mud from my boots and wonder what my wife has made for dinner. I ask. “Spaghetti and Meatballs,” she says, looking at my dirty cargo pants like they might give her an yet unnamed disease. I french kiss her. “That’s amazing, honey.”

“About 10 years ago” By Julia at Holy Oak Cafe


Thursday May 14, 2015 at Holy Oak Cafe
1:17pm
5 minutes
From a story by Mikal Cronin

About ten years ago I got arrested for shoplifting and it was the best day of my life. I had been taking things that didn’t belong to me for years, for a lifetime even. I would have killed at living on the streets if I had ever had to do that..I don’t know if saying that diminishes it or not, but my skills were unparalleled. I’m not just talking little kid stuff like embroidery floss, or key chains. It was that stuff plus the good hits. I’m talking fancy face creams, high end jewelry, many expensive bathing suits, and a couple electronics every now and again. I was a little thief and I was having the time of my life. I don’t know how I got away with so much of it. Nobody every caught me, I assumed I’d never have to “pay the price”. And then that day I got arrested and had to own up, for the very first time, to what I had been doing. To who I had been. And it made me realize that I am not invincible. That I am not the exception to the rule. Cause eventually everyone has to learn that somehow.

“In the 1950’s the word” by Julia at Dark Horse


Wednesday May 13, 2015 at Dark Horse
5:16pm
5 minutes
The R-Word
Heather Kirn Lanier


In the 1950’s the word was imagined. Created. Conjured up. It was used for a brief time to describe the feeling of having everything but still feeling so helplessly and problematically empty. It was a truthful word adopted by a lot of artists. They began to write songs about it, make plays about it, dream about it, live by it. The issue that arose was the word was being over-used and becoming too loved. Yes, the strain it had, the effect of identifying too closely with one word, caused artists and young people to connect so strongly to it that they stopped trying to end the initial suffering of it. They began to accept it as it was, without the need to change it in any way.

“That’s amazing, honey,” by Julia at her desk


Tuesday May 12, 2015
1:22am
5 minutes
Almost Unendurable Beauty
Jocelyn Evie


I don’t believe you, Brendan, how the hell am I supposed to believe anything you say? Not just what you say but how you say it. You never mean anything.
…Aimless pacing
…Wandering
…She does
…He watches
What are you even talking about, Maggie? I mean things. I mean what I say to you, of course I do.
…Veins bulge
…Slowly threatening to pop
…His do
…She watches
Because I feel like you’re pulling one over on me all the time. The way you say shit, like “That’s amazing, honey” when things aren’t amazing, or when I’m clearly upset about something and you tell me “well, there’s always tomorrow”. Like what the hell am I supposed to do with fucking tomorrow when today I feel like dying and you can’t even see that?
…Heart fuming
…Coat wearing
…She is
…He isn’t

“Knowing they can’t touch us” by Sasha on the porch in Horseshoe Bay


Monday May 11, 2015
4:43pm
5 minutes
Breathe Easy
Rachel Sermanni


Bud’s got more to say now that the whales are singing. His hands are open and he isn’t hitting his head against the wall. “Don’t touch me, Molly. Don’t touch me,” he says, smiling. I massage his palms, the muscles harder than concrete. He spends his afternoons on the porch, overlooking the ocean. When he hears a whale he calls, “Songs! Songs!” He dances and I say, “careful not to get splinters!” He lifts his feet higher. When his mother comes home from work she says, “How was the day?” She pours herself a glass of white wine. She kisses Bud on the forehead and he wrinkles his nose.

“Happy Mother’s Day” by Sasha in Horseshoe Bay


Sunday May 10, 2015
8:33pm
5 minutes
from a sign at the florist

spit up on the front of this goodwill shirt
i don’t have much of it
goodwill
so tired i might puke too
flowers
i don’t want flowers
i want sex and a steak and in that order
if you really knew the way to my heart
you wouldn’t have given me this creature that cries all the time
and bites my nipples so hard that they bleed
i’ve gotten fatter than i’ve ever been
your gaze like a canon ball
the beauty you once fell for
gone
like the cat
poster on the tree at the end of the street
my body
all stretch marks and cellulite
my face
all frown lines and bags under my eyes
“diamonds” you used to say
diamonds
twinkle twinkle little star
how i wonder what you are
where you’ve been
i’m not sure about this creature
whether he’ll turn out alright
i’m not sure about how tiny his toes are
puts me off

“I feel like a skid” by Sasha at Moksha Yoga Vancouver


Saturday May 9, 2015
3:42pm
5 minutes
Overheard at Kits beach

I’ll follow you, North Star.
I’ll follow you all the way down South and up to the icy Arctic and back across to the mountains and the deserts.
I’ll be there to guide you, North Star, when you’re tired of lighting everyone else’s way.
I’ll make you blackberry smoothies with coconut and hemp seeds – you’ll need that plant based protein, North Star.
If you feel like drifting, don’t feel like you must be chained to the North – sail south, ancient one! Sail sideways and in zigzags! I’ll keep your spot warm.
I’ll dry your thunderstorm tears, North Star, when you’re ravaged by grief, when you lose another member of the Milky Way. I’ll cradle you in my arms until you fall asleep, salty-cheeked and eyes swollen.
I’ll run alongside you when you learn to ride a bike, speed demon. I’ll cheer you on and I’ll put bandaids on your knees when you skin them.

“Knowing they can’t touch us” by Julia at her desk


Monday May 11, 2015
12:55am
5 minutes
Breathe Easy
Rachel Sermanni


I called out to an old friend who had come back into my life recently. I called out to her while she still had one foot in my world and one out the door. I wanted her to hear everything before she left.
She turned her head slowly, with an expectant look in her eyes. She could see right through me like I was made of glass. She knew I was in need of her and the way things used to be. Maybe she was in need of me and the way things used to be too. It’s as if in that moment of time-stopping-fears-cast-aside-light-warming-honest-connecting we were transported back to the place where the rain poured everywhere except for directly on us. We were untouchable then and I wanted that again. If not for us, than for me. She was back and here for only moments, maybe not even. She held that daisy chain limp in her hand as if she knew time was a thing one of us imagined some hot afternoon in July.

“Happy Mother’s Day” by by Julia at her desk


Sunday May 10, 2015
4:33pm
5 minutes
from a sign at the florist

So I was 12 or something when we were having a Mother’s Day Brunch for my mom and I was convinced it had to be like a movie. So when my family was all gathered around the table ready to eat, I stop the presses and run to go get the CD player because there is a crucial song that needs to be played right at the start of the meal (for some reason). So I go get it, and everyone’s like, what are you doing, let’s do it after, come on let’s just eat now, etc. And then I get VERY upset because no one can understand how ABSOLUTELY FUCKING IMPERATIVE PLAYING “THE PERFECT FAN” BY THE BACKSTREET BOYS ACTUALLY IS. So at this point I’m in full cry-town mode. I hate the world, I’m very embarrassed that they let me hype up the plan only to criticize it, and worst of all, now my mother will never know how I truly feel about her.

“I feel like a skid” by Julia at her desk


Saturday May 9, 2015
12:02am
5 minutes
overheard at Kits Beach

I accidentally caught a glimpse of myself in a store window earlier. I didn’t mean to look and I was even more startled because of it. I glanced briefly and I was surprised by what I had seen. So that’s why I double took. And that’s when I noticed myself for the first time. My white tank top was too lose for me. It was covering all my curves and it made me look 10 years younger or older than I am. My knees were all bruised up. I guess I have bruise-able knees, or I don’t walk carefully around bed frames or something. Maybe a bit of column A, maybe a bit of column B. And the part that did me over? The part of me I was most disgusted by? Was that I had a mustard stain right in the belly button of the shirt. How does one slop mustard right in the belly button of anything? By being a slob apparently.

“It showed from the start” by Sasha on the 14


Friday May 8, 2015
5:16pm
5 minutes
Fat Woman
Leon Rooke


It shows from the start
The ruin
Quaking breath in a full chest
Belly rises and falls
Heavy as full udders
Low as the stars this summer
It shows because we’ve stopped talking about the future
All present tense
All coronas and tortilla chips
Drinking so much that we forget we’re bored
Eating so much that the tops of our mouths are cut

It’s all inevitable
Isn’t it?
For an optimist
I’m awfully hopeless

We walk in the forest
Pointer fingers hooked
The dog charging ahead
Not needing to be called back
Leash free
He comes because he knows we’ve got treats
in our pockets

“It showed from the start” by Julia at Saving Gigi


Friday May 8, 2015 at Saving Gigi
3:10pm
5 minutes
Fat Woman
Leon Rooke


I could see he was angry at me-clenched teeth, fist pulsing at his side.
“Is everything okay?” I ask him, test him, provoke him.
“I’m fine,” he says quietly, not looking fine at all.
“Okay,” I tell him, “Let me know.”
I watch as his current anger subsides and he can see me with the soft eyes he first had for me again.
“I’m really scared I’m always wrong and the times I’m so desperate to be wrong, that’s when I’m afraid I’ll be right,” I tell him this with my eyes cast down at the broken green bottle at our feet. “That’s what I’m always feeling.”
He takes me in his arms and exhales into my hair. “It’s okay now my baby. I’m not mad at you. I swear.”
“Okay, good, ” I say, “And just FYI your beard is scratching the shit out of my forehead.”
He releases me.
“Jesus, Tara. Jesus fucking–”
“Don’t be mad,” I say, “I’m sorry.”

“scoop up all the trash” by Julia on her patio


Thursday May 7, 2015
10:04pm
5 minutes
from http://www.ecokids.ca

Community service. As if I should have to serve the community for doing one thing against the legal system. Like one tiny thing, and they make you serve the entire community with your penance and your time and your new shame. There are so many people doing illegal and stupid things. SO MANY. They’re not serving the community, they’re not even worried about having to. I mean, a service to my community would be warning everybody about where not to smoke hash in this city. Tell people where not to speed. Now these are services people want. The community doesn’t give a flying fuck if I rake up some completely docile leaves. Leaves don’t bother people, why is that one of the tasks? The community doesn’t care if I scoop up all the trash in the park. There are city people who get PAID to do that so they’re not going to suddenly feel like a big weight’s been lifted off them if I, the apparently guilty, offer a bunch of hours to essentially take away job opportunities from someone who actually needs the work.

“scoop up all the trash” by Sasha at Higher Grounds


Thursday May 7, 2015 at Higher Grounds
3:29pm
5 minutes
from http://www.ecokids.ca

Don’t pick a girl who wants you to treat her like a princess. I did, and look where it got me. Broke, broken-hearted, broken set of toes… Damn. Still got my cowboy hat and still got my pride, though. No one can ever take those two away from me. Look, Sandro, I don’t wanna freak you out, but, like, you pick a girl who wants you to treat her like a princess and you’re never gonna be happy. I mean, I don’t think life is really about being happy, but it’s about being, like, peaceful or something. It’s only when you’re scooping up the trash of your life that you realize – you did everything for her and nothing for you. You’ve spent almost a decade sucking up to someone who wishes she were royalty. She’s not! If you’d just stuck to your guns and told her that when you first got together, “Honey, you’re from Campbell River, you’re never gonna be Cinderella, get over yourself…” maybe things would’ve worked out a little differently. I want the best for your Sandro, I don’t want what happened to me to happen to you… I mean, what am I supposed to do now? I’m forty two. I’m supposed to start over?

“chemical or thermal irritation” by Sasha on her couch


Wednesday May 6, 2015
8:17pm
5 minutes
http://www.webmd.com

I, Seraphina Tallula Roryson, born on the twelfth of May, nineteen eighty two, am the fourth wife of George Fredrick Roryson, polygamist father of sixteen children (and two on the way, not twins, I’m pregnant and so is His second wife, Marybeth), and ruler of the Winter Church of New Placemonton. New Placemonton is on the border of the New World and the Old World. We wear bonnets, with jeans and V-necks. I make date squares for every bake sale between here and Kittaback, and I do Crossfit. I will be George’s last wife, he proclaimed this over baked salmon and tater tots, made by the third wife, Trina. Each one of us has our… “Thing”. Katherine, the first wife, is the “Quiet One”. Marybeth is the “Political One”. Trina is the “Born Mother”. And I? I’m the “Wild Card”. Most polygamist men have a wild card but few are as wild as I. George says I keep him “on his toes”. He says he wouldn’t live a day past seventy if it weren’t for me. “You keep me young, Seraphina. You keep me spry.”

“chemical or thermal irritation” by Julia at Caledonia Park


Wednesday May 6, 2015
7:17pm
5 minutes
http://www.webmd.com

According to Gwen’s self-diagnosis, she had 3 days to live and a whole lot of goodbyes to give. I laughed when she said that. “It’s just mild discoloration. You’re fine!” Gwen wasn’t amused. After spending hours googling her “condition” she was convinced that she had the rare unpronounceable disease, and this was, in fact, the very end of the line for her. “You don’t know anything, you’re not a doctor, Ian!”
I laughed again. “Neither are you! Come on, don’t put this stress on yourself, people on there have nothing better to do than to scare perfectly healthy people who are not even close to dying.”
“And if they’re right? Some small chance that this is actually happening? Then what?”

“A rare chance” by Julia on her bed


Tuesday May 5, 2015
12:35am
5 minutes
A Friends of Chamber Music brochure

Am I dying and I don’t know it because I’m crying and I don’t know it? I mean I know it. That’s something I know. But what I don’t, is, is it a threat to my living self if my body is crying but my mental awareness of that physical reaction to something happening in my life… is non-existent? Or delayed, I mean. For one whole hour? Is that too long to go without realizing that tears are pouring out of my face? I mean I know that’s too long, so maybe something big is happening. Maybe I’m releasing all the bad in my body, in my spirit, and then just that kind of peace after the bad is all gone feels like dying. Because maybe that kind of dying is the right kind.

“A rare chance” by Sasha at Culprit Coffee


Tuesday May 5, 2015
10:20am
5 minutes
A Friends of Chamber Music brochure

“It’s a rare chance, Al,” Clare says, painting the big toe of my right foot. “I think you need to go for it…” Her hands are cold and I think about when we met, tadpoles in overalls and baseball hats. “I just can’t imagine going so far away, it seems so extreme…” “You’ll be fine,” she blows on my toes and I laugh, pulling my foot away. “That tickles!” “Don’t jerk around! You’ll mess them up!” She furrows her eyebrows. “What time is the concert tonight?” “I thought you said you’d bought your ticket?” “I…” “Claire!” “I’ll get it at the door!” “You’re just waiting to see if something more interesting turns up. I know you.” “I am certainly not doing that… My credit card was cut off, I, I can’t book anything online and I didn’t want to ask someone to cover for me…” “Shit. Sorry.” “It’s okay.” “I’ll ask again about getting you on the guest list?” “I’m happy to pay…” “I’ll ask again.”

“Like eagle rounding out the morning” by Sasha in front of the fire


Monday May 4, 2015
11:03pm
5 minutes
from a poem by Joy Harjo

Like eagle rounding out the blooming morning
my brother leans into the sunflower and shakes the dew off
It splatters onto his plaid shirt and he
brushes it off
The damp more than he bargained for
The yellow petals remind me of Aunt Ginny’s fresh
churned butter
Dipping our fingers in and licking them and dipping our fingers in
She’d tap our wrists
“Scram!” She’d say
But it was warm as flannel and cloves
It wasn’t cruel like our grandfather

My brother pulls weeds from around the flowers
chucking them over his shoulder
I do the same
Following his lead
“Like this,” he says
Making a pile
the unwanted

“I would have been an eighth-grader” by Sasha at her kitchen table


Sunday May 3, 2015
10:15pm
5 minutes
On Writing
Stephen Kingk


I would have been an eighth-grader this year if they hadn’t held me back, if they hadn’t oppressed my rights and made me wait for it, made me beg for it… Graduation. I saw my classmates who I’d been with since the very beginning, since tear-away track pants and Pogs, get up on the stage in the gym in blue and yellow gowns and hats. I heard Davie Bernstein make the valedictorian speech. “Hey Davie,” I said later, side-by-side in the urinal, “Nice speech.” He looked at me sideways and said, “Go suck a dick, Howard.” He tucked his into his stupid dress pants, didn’t wash his hands and left, laughing and talking loudly with the rest of the class. They held me back not because I’m not smart, not because I can’t write an essay or solve an algebra equation. They held me back because I’m not a go-getter. “You’re just not a go-getter,” Mrs. Sherman said, purple lipstick on her front teeth. “We think you’ll do better with one more year in Grade Six. We think you’ll thrive with Miss Davidson.” “Who is this “we”?” I asked, scratching the scab on my right knee. “The faculty, your parents and me,” Mrs. Sherman said, blinking her cow-like eyes quickly, like the question caught her off guard.

“Like eagle rounding out the morning” by Julia at her desk


Monday May 4, 2015
10:57pm
5 minutes
from a poem by Joy Harjo

Claire has her big day today. She rubs fresh mint on all her pressure points before she leaves the house. No stress, she breathes, no stress today. Claire is wearing the blouse her oldest sister, Amelia, gave to her on her 30th birthday, the black pendant necklace her father rescued from the sewer, her favourite blazer with the three buttons, and the underwear her grandmother used to poke fun at, saying, these ones for special party nights, these ones keep separate from comfy big and bad ones. She had been meditating all morning, humming softly to herself attempting to prepare for the news and the meaning of something this important. She had hunted down the perfect bar for when she receives the news she was hoping for, but also the perfect bar in case she is denied the thing that she wants most in this world.

“work its magic” by Sasha in the bath


Saturday May 2, 2015
10:42pm
5 minutes
from seriouseats.com

come on pretty baby we’re taking the long road this time
out out out
away from green trying her best to break through grey
away from horns honking their loud scream interruption
in in in
waterfall baths and making love under the full beltane moon
i had an alibi once but it failed me
i knelt before you
i cried my own version of apology
i slipped on your disillusionment and went flying
falling
dancing
dark dark dark
someone’s at the door and they are saying your name the way i do
too heavy with love
too wet with wanting
you don’t know what to do with the weight of my hope
faith and doubt dance
tango tango tango

“Abundance” by Sasha on her couch


Friday May 1, 2015
6:38pm
5 minutes
from a vintage matchbook

Every now and then I think of you and
where you might be now that it’s this year
I think of how you might smell in the heat of the West
Your hands holding tight to sticks from an arbutus tree
Drumming on the air
Waving one hand high
Motioning me closer

I burnt my hand this morning
Thinking of you as I poured boiling water from the kettle into my
blue mug
I didn’t dare make a sound
Wondering if I might wake him
the one I’ve chosen

“Summer road trip” by Sasha at her kitchen table


Thursday April 30, 2015
8:24pm
5 minutes
from a magazine article

Nikki won Miss Bellingtown when she was eight years old and it was all downhill from there. “Shit,” she says, whenever she thinks about that. Wearing her crown, her ribbon and a blue terry cloth robe, she puts wet food down for Hushie. She recently turned twenty seven. She’s never drank a real gin and tonic, she’s never gone on a camping trip and the most intimate conversations she has are with Hushie. She calls her mother on the rotary phone, as she does every Sunday. “Mom, it’s Nik. Call me – ” And Tasha picks up the phone, out of breath, the answering machine clicking on, recording their conversation. “Nikki! The chive flowers are blooming! You’ve gotta come down here and see ’em. They’re your favourite colour of purple!” Tasha’s boyfriend, Camerson, recently moved in with her. Ever since, when they speak, Tasha half shouts. “Why are you yelling, Mom?” Nikki asks, knowing the answer. Her mother finally found love, after seventeen and a half years of looking. “Camerson says HI!” Tasha wishes her daughter would get dressed. “Why don’t you go out for a coffee with a galpal?!” “What are you talking about…” “Put some clothes on, goddamnit, and take off that stupid crown!” “I’m not wearing a crown!” “Don’t lie to me Nicole.”

“I think his wife is pregnant. Or, she’s really heavy…” by Sasha at Higher Grounds


Wednesday April 29, 2015 at Higher Grounds
3:11pm
5 minutes
Overheard at Higher Grounds Coffee House

She’s wearing a hat
She’s wearing a red hat
She’s wearing a red hat and she’s frowning
She’s wearing a hat, she’s frowning and her brow is furrowed
She’s wearing a hat, she’s frowning, her brow is furrowed and her eyes are swollen

She’s bring pulled
She’s bring pulled down
She’s bring pulled down and around
She’s bring pulled down, around and she’s trying to keep her hat on
She’s bring pulled down, around, she’s trying to keep her hat on and she’s trying to see the light
She’s bring pulled down, around. she’s trying to keep her hat on, she’s trying to see the light

“I would have been an eighth-grader” by Julia at on her balcony


Sunday May 3, 2015
6:15pm
5 minutes
On Writing
Stephen Kingk


If I had stayed in class that day, I would have graduated high school, with just less than honours. Maybe less than less than honours cause I don’t know what graduating with just less than honours is even called. I would have been a person with a real diploma. I would have been a real person. But instead I skipped class with Erin cause she wanted to go to the aquarium and see what it’s really like to be trapped. I didn’t want her to go alone cause I was scared she was going to try to show them what it was like to be really free. We didn’t make it to the aquarium though. We weren’t even close…

“work its magic” by Julia at her desk


Saturday May 2, 2015
10:58pm
5 minutes
from seriouseats.com

Sometimes you just gotta wait and see, feel the earth steady under your feet, breathe in the moon, and wait. Last night I had an exchange with her. The moon. It was a silent, telepathic one. I went outside, I brought my favourite lighter, and I sparked up a conversation…among other things. I exhaled, dedicating the smoke right at her. She was cloaked in clouds and didn’t respond right away. I asked her, with my intentions only, if she wanted to join me. Couldn’t hurt to ask, even if the answer was no, it couldn’t possibly hurt me at all. She didn’t answer then and there. So I waited. I waited, I smoked, I sent my signals to her trying to tug her in my direction. Come get high with me, I willed. Take a load off. We don’t need the brightness of you every single second. Then suddenly, after all that patience I was practicing, she came out. She tossed aside her persistent body guards and she winked at me. I guess the waiting paid off.

“Abundance” by Julia at her desk


Friday May 1, 2015
4:38pm
5 minutes
from a vintage matchbook

Daddy and little girl
Playing with new tricycle and puppy
Good man
Good good man
And the ball bouncing one two three
Happiness until the air runs out
Mommy comes with belly full of baby new
Big sister runs and jumps
Daddy pushes little girl on swing
WEEE!
HIGHER!
Laughing and family growing
Tell me when you get cold!
Mommy and puppy new keep their watchful eyes open
Little girl dragging tricycle along
Can’t ride it if you don’t get back on!
Daddy kneels down next to little girl
I’m right beside you, don’t be afraid.
Mommy and belly baby new, Daddy and little girl smile