“silence that voice.” By Sasha on her couch

Wednesday October 3, 2018
6:37am
5 minutes
Sitting in the Fire
Pema Chodron

Silence the voices of doubt
like you would a mewing lamb
weaving between your legs
underfoot and gentle

Silence the voices of doubt
with the kindness of a lover
with the patience of teacher
with the fire of freedom

I know doubt like I know
my mother’s face
even though I go months now
without seeing her

My mother
not doubt

Doubt creeps in often
hard to say exactly how often
when I’m turned the other way
when I’m tying my boot

“what would happen if we moved to Vancouver?” by Sasha on her couch

Thursday September 20, 2018
9:13pm
5 minutes
Crystal
Gillian Wigmore

Before we moved to the land of mist drops
and mountain tops before we came where the rain
lasts and the leaves change colour in slow motion

We were clear only on the passion and ambition
needed to leave where we’d always known
H-O-M-E that four letter word that’s so sacred

We knew it was something that we had to do
“Go West” the wind whispered
“Go West” called the pines and cedars

And bless us that we listened
bless us that it’s been four years
and all these joys and fights and loves and aches

“Be a lamp,” by Sasha in her bed

Monday August 20, 2018
11:11pm
5 minutes
From a quote by Rumi

“I don’t want to be a lamp”
young Billy did say
Sitting a top
a big bale of hay

“Of course you don’t”
His mama replied
picking him up
as she softly sighed

“I want to be a table
or a whale or a star”
Billy wiggled about
and they didn’t get far

The cows were grazing
and the pigs were in mud
Billy liked to watch the kittens
jump with a thud

“Come on now honey
It’s almost time for bed”
“But I’m not tired”
Is what Billy always said

They got to the house
and said goodnight to the barn
and while Billy brushed teeth
his mama spun yarn

“hence it is important that you DETERMINE” by Julia at the desk

Sunday July 29, 2018
6:24pm
5 minutes
Snark Tuner Instructions

You must be able to read the language of your personality with care
Know how to take the truth and swallow it
Understand how to protect yourself
how to avoid swallowing too much air along with it
You must get good at asking yourself the right questions:
Am I hungry?
Am I Lonely?
There are others
They can work for all of us
You must be able to determine which thing is occurring
You must be able to listen to the answer as if it were a
new born baby crying with reckless abandon
As if it cannot be ignored
And then don’t ignore it
Pick up your baby (You)
rock your baby (you) with love
Kiss your baby’s (your) cheeks
And wait there for a miute
to be informed

“hence it is important that you DETERMINE” by Sasha at her desk

Sunday July 29, 2018
3:05pm
5 minutes
Snark Tuner Instructions

Today I scrubbed the glass
of the sliding door and thought
Oh this is spiritual practise
as prayer is
Oh this is prayer
Sweat beading on my forehead
squatted and smelling of
newspaper and vinegar

In May when we’d get
the cottage ready for
a summer of rentals
it was my job to wash
the glass of the sliding doors
and while I probably procastinated
I loved doing it
giving to this home that held us
through the joy
and the madess
giving to this mother
who gave everything to us

I’m glad that we know the
clarity of clean space
that the act of clearing
dust from the surface of the altar
sends a smile to my lips

“Truth rambles some moorish in-between, but that’s poetry” by Sasha on her balcony

Saturday July 28, 2018
4:42pm
5 minutes
Rhinocerotic
Ellie Sawatzky

Truth rambles out open pores
and I smell goodness on your skin
drink it in
maybe that’s why I like to bury
in your armpits

I’ve never known a love
with these peaks and valleys

When someone I enjoy
asks me about the first year
of marriage
all I can say is

“Yes
it’s different
Yes
it’s the hardest thing
Yes
it’s all a beautiful mystery”

“The roots went down
that day and they spread
wide always reaching always
ready”

all I can say is

This is how I
want to be

“There are no edges to my loving now.” By Sasha on her balcony

Monday July 16, 2018
6:44pm
5 minutes
Quoted by Rumi

the water of this wears me
this sweat and longing and heartbreak
and love and trust and dreaming and collision
of past-present-future
there are less edges to my loving now
that we sleep naked in the glory and mud

i set the same intention a million
times over set the timer for five minutes
twenty minutes
three days
as a marker that maybe then i’ll be
ready maybe then i’ll be healed

the words help they always do
the forest helps it always does
water helps it always
does
too

the fluid nature of love
can’t be explained can it
just as you can’t explain
the etches on the walls of
the heart
this heart
beating in my mouth
this love
this heart
fireworks in the aeorta
ventricle to ventricle
we reach towards
the now

“I do not know how to smile” by Sasha on her balcony

Sunday July 8, 2018
11:13pm
5 minutes
From a text

A woman
asks me why
I’m so happy
like how could I possibly be
so entitled to joy

Isn’t this
our birthright?
Now to convince
the masses

The forest
knows how to
bend and sway

This woman
looks skeptical
like I must be
on something

That was a time
when I was riding
without a helmet

That was a time
when I was kissing
a lot of people

“for the girls I kissed in seventh grade” by Sasha at her kitchen table

Sunday June 24, 2018
10:03pm
5 minutes
Practicing
Marie Howe

This is for the girls I’ve kissed
Tulip breath and hummingbird tongue
All softness and goodness and truth
All sour and breaking and everything

Seventh grade was a strange year
Overalls to hide breaching breasts
Smile to hide unasurredness
I am alive but I am afraid but I am electric

Girls kiss different than guys
But sometimes you find a guy that kisses
Like a girl and that’s one you want to hang on to
That’s one I want to hang onto

Beeswax and cinnamon
Coffee and salt
Pineapple and peach
Gin and playing cards

“our bodies amalgamated from the great melting pot” by Sasha at her desk

Sunday June 10, 2018
9:25am
5 minutes
The Communion of Strangers
Brian Jay Stanley

When we met
you were smoky eyed
luscious and tempting words
wearing green is what I remember most
the bigness of your youness
is what I remember most

before surgeries
a joint bank account
a daughter’s name chosen
and waiting in the bank
of where our hearts meet
a promise made under September sun

before two summers of waiting up
three fights where one of us broke something
four winters in the rain
five trips on highways and planes
six days a week of being ships crossing now
and priase be
seven whole years of this biggest love

In sleep our bodies know no boundaries
except when you’re snoring
or I’m too hot
or one of us is sick
In sleep we do become one
boundless being of newness
Nowness
Toes touching

Your arm under my head
cradling my dreamscape
My leg over your leg
hoping that you go so far
knowing that you’re home
when you’re here and when
we’re here
exactly like this

“The only thing I can come up with” by Sasha sitting on her floor

Thursday, March 1, 2018
10:07pm
5 minutes
No Idea
Dana ID Matthews

The only thing I can come up with is

us dancing in the kitchen in the country
getting drunk and making a fire

The only thing I can come up with is

taking a bath in the clawfoot tub
and you sneaking photographs

I wonder what happened to those photographs
I wonder if they are under your bed
or if they are dead in a hard drive somewhere
or are they just negatives in a memory
somewhere between then and now
you and I

The only thing I can come up with is

you running into a friend
of a friend at Lee’s Palace
friend of a friend says my name
and you tap her on the shoulder and say

“She’s one of the loves of my life”

“bellies full of unborn air” by Sasha at her kitchen table

Monday February 12, 2018
8:31am
5 minutes
Mannequins
Emily Davidson

Bellies full of unborn air
we reach for stars
we have no concept of.
How far away is venus?
How close is the new moon?
Where exactly is the north star?

Hearts full of
bubbles and pebbles
we crouch in the fire
hope we
don’t get burned.

Yes

you know more than me.

In my unknowning
though

I am wiser than
the octopus
with her smirk
and her paws.

Contort this body
into origami cranes.
Shake your head
at the grey
at the red.

Make failures
and love
in equal measure.

Yes

you are the tallest

mountain.

Playing piano
with our noses
we shake our fat
until the crows
laugh.

“He’s not worthy of competing with you” by Sasha at the Roundhouse

Saturday January 27, 2018
1:43pm
5 minutes
The Duel
Thomas Brasch

When it’s late
and I’m alone
and nothing’s really wrong
but right is around the corner
smoking a joint
hat pulled down

When it’s late
and I’m alone
the glow of this
putrid light burning
I can’t help but
search for you

I know where to find you

Buried in my inbox
scattered in my outbox
what we used to say
makes my heart race

I imagine you rocking
your baby to sleep
so peaceful
so good
I imagine you thinking
about me
getting hard
getting soft
getting a drink of water

None of these ghosts
can compete with what I’ve got

I know where to find you

Singing out of a tinny speaker
Singing words I wrote for a
melody we already knew

“Hitchhiking” by Sasha at her kitchen table

Monday January 1, 2018
7:49pm
5 minutes
Trek: A Publication of Alumni UBC

I want you to go first with your ties of love riding the crest of the wave
most wildly at night with your newfound drunken freedom
from the wickedness
the blame
or something

I want you to stick your thumb out and see who pulls over and climb in before
I even decide
freedom on the side of the highway
crouched in the tall grass
peeing

There is always a final chapter
A conclusion
The timing is up to us
An agreement
Usually silent
Usually eye contact and deep breaths
Freedom from

It’s the first day of the rest of my life or at least 2018
I am here with books piled high beside me
Happy place
Joy place
Finally
My love sleeps in our darkened bedroom
A candle with Sacred Mother Mary burns low on the sill
He’ll leave not tomorrow but the next day
and then it will just be

me

“All I’ve ever learned from love” by Sasha at her kitchen table

Friday November 24, 2017
10:47pm
5 minutes
Hallelujah
Leonard Cohen

Love knocks you around
Especially when you’re young
You throw yourself at every blue eyed Casanova

Love scoops you up
Carries you for awhile
And then drops you
Sound of a cracking egg
Sound of a sizzle
Sound of morning

Love requests nothing
That’s not what you’re used to

Love ruptures
Love rips
Love heals
Love leaks
Love laughs loud
Open mouthed

Love grabs you hard
Hand on the small of your back
You’ve never been touched like this before
You’re breathless putty

“COLD PRESS BRIGHT” by Sasha in the Kiva

Sunday October 1, 2017
11:32pm
5 minutes
from the EPSON box

I will cold press your brightness like orange juice
We’ll drink it together like moon shine
The Milky Way will guide the walk to the jungle
Where we’ll dance naked with parrots and palms

I will kiss every inch of your hurting
Where you didn’t get enough or got too much
I will love every place where you’re burning
And slow your heart with a lullaby like this

I will give you the goodness that you need now
I will waterfall into the unknowings
I will write poems after hours of loving
And chart futures on the bed sheet tangle

“On the day of our wedding” by Sasha in the Kiva

Monday September 18, 2017
11:31pm
5 minutes
Swing Low
Miriam Toews

On the day of our wedding I will vow to
Be impeccable with my word
Not take things personally
I will vow not to make assumptions
And to choose love choose love
Choose love
Choose
Love
Every day

I will break these vows

We agree that we will
Break these vows

“It’s an aspiration”
You say
On the phone long distance

“It’s an aspiration”
I say
Under my breath
Crossing things off the list

On the day of our wedding
We will stand in a field
Under a blue sky
We will walk with our parents
We will walk alone
We will sweat
We will cry
We will worry that someone is uncomfortable
We will feel grace
We will promise
Honesty
Love
Honor
We will do our best
We will speak vows
We will break
We will kiss
We will vow
I will vow to

Be the one to hold
You
To yourself
To me
To your word
To the supple space
Between now and forever

“Christian Science Reading Room” by Sasha in her bed


Wednesday August 23, 2017
11:46pm
5 minutes
From a storefront on West Broadway

Words are my best lover
knowing when to go slow and move slick
Whisper whisper the sweet fuck
I cradle my notebook like your elbow
the salty spot where your hip is
my lip is I snuggle my pen and
don’t sweat the stain

Words know me and grow me and stretch
the truth of the t-r-u-t-h
of the b-o-d-y
b can oh-nly contain oh oh oh

d is the darkness
is the depth
is the deep

why y y why
a crest
a crescendo
Words, my tonic, my prince, my
oh my

“packing slip” by Sasha at her desk


Saturday August 12, 2017
10:18pm
5 minutes
A receipt

I open my hands for you and
you put a packing slip there
you skip a packing note there
my hands are empty for you
and now not so empty
you
I open my hands and you
breathe fire I say
it’s okay
it’s okay
and I put that slip
in my back pocket
Never know when you’ve
got a list to write
Never know when you
might be struck by
inspiration

“they couldn’t handle you?” by Sasha on her balcony


Friday July 28, 2017
9:15pm
5 minutes
Overheard on Kits beach

I often feel I’m not keeping up
the dust bunnies collect in the corners again
the kitchen floor needs scrubbing again
I explain the rules of writing dialogue to children
but meanwhile break them in the quiet of the solitude

In fifty six days I will be married
this is not an accomplishment
or a humble brag
it is a fact
plain and simple
like my Diva cup sitting in a teacup
of boiling water on the counter

I often look at pictures of women
either pregnant or with
small cinnamon bun children
I wonder what it will be
to roll dough between my hands
and sift genes in my womb
“God willing” I say

Almost husband
my sweetheart
you put a Persian rug on the balcony
you leave plaque on the mirror
you fold my underwear into perfect shapes
you hold me tender and rough

“God willing”

“Let’s do choices” by Sasha at her desk


Tuesday July 25, 2017
11:01pm
5 minutes
The Home Depot ad

If I bought you a popsicle, I’d buy you a rocket. I’d hold it for you, so that as you ate it in the thick heat, none would drip onto your shirt. It’s white. That’s the real gift. I wouldn’t mind if my hands got sticky. I might not even wash them. I might save the stick until the night, when I’d spend a bit of time with them before crawling into bed. I’d have to wash my sheets, but it would be worth it.

“intimate questions” by Sasha on her balcony


Friday June 23, 2017
10:39pm
5 minutes
From an e-mail

I thought maybe we’d start by talking about the cities where we were born
I thought we’d start by making small talk about the weather or
the government
or
the smell of the season the smell of the summer
Instead you inside my head and you say

I know we’ve met before

We have

Yes

Oh

Mundane intimate words
Rubbing soft gentleness
Mundane words that mean
everything now
in my memory space
as I contemplate
the colour of our love

“I was speaking body-to-body.” By Sasha at her desk


Wednesday June 21, 2017
11:18pm
5 minutes
From an interview with Lidia Yuknavitch on http://www.bloom-site.com

We don’t have much to say to each other
with these things
with these words
with syll-
ables
broken and frayed
and drunk on vowels

We speak body-to-body
sweaty sheets wound round
thighs and arms and
you touch me with the
conviction I’ve always
wanted to be wanted
in this articulation

When we walk down the
street you are distant
one hand on the handlebars
of your bicycle
I’m not used to this
arrangement of hard
K’s and V’s and
you disorient me
with your vague
interpretations of
song lyrics of the
band I wish I knew

I am gutted when
you stop calling
because I’ve only known
this body-to-body to mean
something
something languid
something truthful
something gracious

It’s two years before I
know the true taste of sweetness
of gentle whispered w’s and a’s

“while the couple works out their troubles without distraction” by Sasha on her couch


Monday June 12, 2017
10:00pm
5 minutes
Committed
Elizabeth Gilbert


Without distraction we take to the winding roads
of the west way up near the sky touching
clouds with our noses way up near the stars
touching ancient dust with our eyelashes

We swim in salt water plunging pools
and my skin gets burned by the sun but
it’s okay it’s okay
it’s okay

You read to me in a whisper
from your secret notebook
the holy grail
and an eagle flies overhead
shadows in the wideness of the wingspan

“He lowers his eyes and I know” by Sasha on her balcony


Sunday June 4, 2017
12:25pm
5 minutes
Years Later, I Go Back To Thank You
Anders Carlson-Wee


He lowers his eyes
and I know that he’s
thinking of the space between
clavicle and neck
the tender taste
of summer skin
sweat and watermelon
salt and sunscreen
“Look at me” I say
the unfamiliar crack
of fear
of wishing
He raises his eyes
forest floor of longing
stretching the width
of this city
reaching up towards
the sun

“The only thing we lack” by Sasha on her couch


Sunday May 28, 2017
2:19pm
5 minutes
A program from the Cultch

Today I rise from bed groggy
heart full of last night’s baring
dreams of children and quartz
eyes wide
rushing water
my sister’s hair
a walk in the woods
barefoot
I sit on the balcony
cradling tea and my thirty-first
cradling all that I have built
on this borrowed plot
I call my father
and he sings in a voice
that lands somewhere
before time
A hummingbird
lands on the tree with
the yellow blooms
Joy
Joy
Joy

“and they’ll break your heart” by Sasha on her balcony


Sunday May 21, 2017
10:01pm
5 minutes
trueactivist.com

This thing we pretend we know
even those hand holding
white haired beauties
shuffling along
place after place
for sixty odd years
even they don’t know.

I pretend to know
what is going through
your head when your
brow furrow
your jaw clenches
your nostrils flare.

I occasionally appreciate
the mystery of you
when I’m rested
caffeinated
exercised
but mostly
I long to know
without having to ask
“what’s wrong?”

“I grasped his.” By Sasha at her desk


Wednesday February 22, 2017
6:35pm
5 minutes
Learning to Love You More
Harrell Fletcher and Miranda July


Before he could say anything
I
I
I’m not sure if words are the
answer after all I mean I I I
it’s bigger than I I
I grasp his hand because sometimes
often a touch says a universe
and all I want is the promise of
the present
Before he could say anything
I I
I I
I interrupted
a habit worse than
chewing up
I inturr-
upted saying
“LOOK
I get scared
I get real scared
that this is all gonna
burn and what’s left
won’t be enough to keep
my full keep me
filled
LOOK I love you
like lava
LOOK I interrupt
because I’m passionate
LOOK here’s my full
hands full heart
full hands full of heart”

“if it must.” By Julia at her desk


Sunday February 19, 2017
10:34pm
5 minutes
The Refusal
Jane Hirschfield


If it maybes then it shouldn’t
If it musts then maybe it should

I must do a lot of things
like the octopus must
like the sun
like you

I must love you when it strikes me
I must see you when I do not want to be seen

Rain must live here
Ocean must roar sometimes
I maybe shouldn’t need to remind myself
like this, on text and tablet

And still I must remind myself because I maybe need you
I must need you
you must need me
if the sun must

“if it must.” By Sasha at her desk


Sunday February 19, 2017
4:58pm
5 minutes
The Refusal
Jane Hirschfield


I try to lean in to you
in your stoic silence
there lives
a birch tree forest
I am sorry for all the times
I say no before
I say yes
I wish it weren’t so
but alas
it is

You wake from a dream
in which we are running
a bullet has grazed
my leg
I am slowed down
and you slow down
to match my
wounded pace

Is life a teetor
totter up is faith
and down is doubt?

Or maybe
it’s the other
way around

“Sad to see you go” by Sasha on her couch


Friday February 17, 2017
11:48pm
5 minutes
From a Goodbye card

You don’t tell her that you’re sad to see her go.
Not with your voice, at least.
You wait until the coffee’s cold
and her station wagon is halfway to the highway
and then you send a text:
“Sad to see you go…”
Most important is the ellipses.
Most important is the space between the dots…
That’s where her hands would go.

You wonder when you’ll hear from her.
If she’ll call from the side of the road
or the backseat, sweaty in her sleeping bag.

You wish that you’d been able to
articulate the expanse of the truth.
You wish that you’d bee able to
speak the three words that filled
every room that the two of you
were in together.

I love you.

“but the apricot” by Sasha at her kitchen table


Wednesday February 15, 2017
12:19am
5 minutes
Peterson First Guide to Tress
George A. Petrides


First
you slice the apricot
along the back
Gentle gentle
Second
you slide
out the pit
Gentle gentle
and maybe you hold
it in your hand
wondering if or
when you might
plant it
and maybe you hear
Jem’s voice in your ear
saying
“Apricot trees don’t
grow here, silly”
Third
you slice
up the apricot
and put the soft
petal pieces into
the bowl with all
the others

“bring it with me” by Sasha at her desk


Tuesday January 17, 2017
10:41pm
5 minutes
From an email

I leave my dig-
nity on your
futon under
the fit-
ted sheet
with the
stain on
the lower
right corner.

I put my
underwear
in my coat
pocket and
pray that I
have a five
dollar bill
in there
to keep them
company
to hold
their tired
hand.

I buy a coffee
at the shop
that also
does photo-
copies and
lamination.

I realize
that I forgot
my phone on
the floor
beside your
futon and
I wonder
what might
be worse
buying a
new phone
or seeing
you again?

“The Toy Box Burlesque” by Sasha at her kitchen table


Monday January 9, 2016
11:36pm
5 minutes
from a show postcard

There you were
all smoke and chapped lips
all donuts in the parking lot
all smelling of the past
There you were
on the bus going downtown
the bridge on stilts
people in their advent calendar windows
There you were
a toy box of our songs
a jack in the box of maybe
that flipped over and broke it’s springs
There you were
almost not seeing me
but then seeing me
and saying
Hello
Nice to see you
Where are you going
I’m sorry
I’m sorry
Nevermind
I should go
This is my stop
Shit
I should go
Fuck you
I’m sorry
I’m sorry

“now do I take you forever” by Sasha at her kitchen table


Thursday November 24, 2016
12:32pm
5 minutes
Weddings from the Heart
Daphne Rose Kingma


We’re talking forevers now which really we have
no right to do which really is all a big joke anyway

We’re talking hay bales and baby names
and barbecued chicken and first dance songs and

Will I even wear a white dress anyway

This institution getting a reboot on the terms
of interracial feminism progression but

what about the minivan and the braces and
the mortgage and the mutt

We’re talking forevers now and it getting
us high and making us squirm

“We talk all about our relationship” by Sasha at her desk


Sunday November 6, 2016
8:50pm
5 minutes
Dear Sugar Radio

We talk all about our relationship until our tongues are heavy
and our hearts are downward dogging stretching
tailbones to the stars
You notice the curl of a lip too quick
the taste of salt on a throat kept tight tight
Fireflies lead us outside and we follow them
into the forest where the dreams of six months from now
call us quietly
by our names
We strip off our clothes and it’s cold but
we don’t mind
I don’t mind
We jump into the water and it’s so cold it’s hot
Takes breath like you do like I do
Takes courage
this
this
Early nights in the fall as the temperature drops

“two beautiful faces” by Sasha at the Airbnb in Montreal


Wednesday September 21, 2016
10:12am
5 minutes
Overheard on Av. Girouard

the NICU beeps and wails and whispers
the nurses scrubs have cats and flowers on them
the babies are so small
so new
how were they ready to be born?
the babies are so strong
so new
they were ready to be born
at least that’s what i
tell myself
washing a pear for my sister
filling her water bottle
rubbing her neck
at least that’s what i
tell myself
walking by the darkened rooms
code indigo taped on the door
mothers and fathers and families
like angel zombies
tired eyes and microwave dinners
sanitize the hands

“they did not” by Sasha on her porch


Sunday, August 28, 2016
10:12pm
5 minutes
From a piece of feedback

They did not tell us that we would fight like dogs
and fuck like them too especially when the heat broke
They did not tell us that there would be days when
everything would feel broken
They did not say,
“Kindness is the most important thing, followed
closely by respect, by humour, by knowing when to
let it go and when to raise the torch.”
They did not say that there would be times when
we would be strangers sleeping side by side.
They did not tell us that we would fall deeper
in love with each fight, each fuck, each break,
each repair, each song, each pizza, each jump
underwater.

“Take a day trip.” By Sasha in the Kiva


Monday August 9, 2016
11:28pm
5 minutes
odysseyonline.com

Edmonton cries big tears like the tide coming in
She laughs through them because that’s what Barb did and
she wants to be just like Barb
“What’s wrong, Edmonton?” Barb asks
and she only just wishes she could kiss those tears
hydration of the finest seas
gulp GULP gulp
Reading pages from one another’s diaries
they don’t call them that they call them something
more grown up more known more dream-like
Reading pages trading books they pass back and forth
sharing sharing sharing but is it
is it
Edmonton forgets to stop reading on page
twenty as instructed
and sees how Barb feels right there in
purple ink
She drops the book the truth grabbing her throat
the truth hot like August
like Nevada
“Barb.”
“What?”
“Page 20.”
“What?”
“You’re in love?”
“No.”
“Yes…”
“Edmonton…”
“I have to go.”
“Stay, please.”
“I have to go right now.”
Edmonton rides her bike the thirty seven blocks
back to her Dad’s place and he’s eating curry with Lena
so she has a few bites before going up to bed.

“behind your kiss” by Sasha on the couch


Wednesday July 6, 2016
10:45pm
5 minutes
When I touch you; Peter Ilyanov
Diana Brebner


Me and you create a secret language of only vowels and speak it when we’re in public. Only we know what we’re saying. There’s power in that. It’s no surprise that I fall in love with you over “o” and “a”, the soft shape of pursed lips, a kiss somewhere behind there.

Some people make fun of us, we hear them cackling or whispering.

“The circle, not the line.” By Sasha in the Kiva


Thursday June 30, 2016
11:35pm
5 minutes
The Axeman
Shaun Cunningham


They carve out my heart and gasp and shudder and
someone faints with a small sigh that only
my heart can hear
“It’s shaped like a like a like a like a
it’s shaped like a hexagon…”
They don’t let me hold it or see it or
kiss it they take it away to a room on
the other side of the place
I wonder when I’ll get it back
I wonder when I’ll see it again
Will I see it again?
“It’s shaped like a like a like a like a
it’s shaped like a hexagon…”
The doctor wore white but my blood was all
over him and it was purple and blue
magenta and violet
azure lavender

“Mangiamo Italiano!” by Sasha on a bench at UBC


Tuesday June 14, 2016
3:47pm
5 minutes
The front page of the Westender

His breath is sharp parmesan cheese, shaved with a pocket knife.
His back is the topography of vineyards, muscles of grapes and sweat of dew.
His words are wise cirrus clouds almost touching heaven.
When we walk together our strides fall into one stride, two strides, three strides, a harmony of flavour and footsteps.
When we swim, he’s stronger so he’s faster. I watch the ripple of the water where his arms break the surface, break the break, broken in more than two.
When we sleep, I fall asleep first and I feel his eyes, Jupiter on the pillow here, scavenging for secrets that haven’t been grated yet, waiting for the moment to eclipse.

“Anytime, night or day” by Sasha on her living room floor


Saturday May 28, 2016
11:19pm
5 minutes
All I Have To Do Is Dream
The Everly Brothers


You never imagined that someone would say, “anytime, night or day, you can call me,” breaking their rule of keeping a cellphone on their bedside table, you never imagined that someone might love you like buttered bagels and a slender moon.

You never imagined that someone might press on your hip bones and remind you that you’re as ancient as stardust as new as the dawn as changing as the late may sky all aglow with a tempest like a thirtieth birthday.

You never imagined that someone would write you love poems and lick the tears from your face as you read them.

“I make him feel guilty.” By Sasha on her couch


Wednesday May 18, 2016
11:14pm
5 minutes
Burner Season
Ellie Sawatzky


Sometimes when I’m lying awake I think about the other girls that look just like me who might also be lying awake and I wonder about courage and what really matters.

Sometimes when I make him feel guilty for the bad things he does I wonder about all the bad men in all the bad places and whether or not someone is making them feel bad. And then I water my plants and forget about it.

Sometimes in the winter I think about the summer and long for it and then when the summer comes I wonder about all that rain and if it makes me a better writer.

“Don’t turn off your computer” by Sasha at Platform Seven


Wednesday April 13, 2016 at Platform 7
4:43pm
5 minutes
from the update installation screen

I showed you love like moss thick under bare feet
tangled just like we are
all roots and flowers all held tight
all reaching

I showed you patience like a watched pot like
the new moon and the tide in and out in and
out all smiles and sighs and gulps
all dirty fingernails and guitar solos

I showed you lavender bouquets blinded by the
streetlights the kitchen is the only alter I’ll
pray at the great divide somehow smaller
amongst tarragon and cinnamon

“your comfort and ours” by Sasha at her kitchen table


Saturday April 9, 2016
8:32pm
5 minutes
from an email

My mother and father on their wedding day

Anthony and Sharon
Twenty nine – both of them, born the same year

1979 – August
U of T Faculty club
“My friend got us in” My mother says now, on the rare occasion that she talks about their wedding.

A modern dancer
A justice of the peace
His Catholic family from Edmonton
Her Jewish family from Montreal
Finger foods made by aunties and the Thai restaurant on Baldwin St.
They danced to Joan Baez and Rikki Lee Jones

I imagine my mother running her hands over the ribs of the brown corduroy
I imagine my father touching the soft floral cotton of her dress
“I didn’t wear a bra,” My mother says now, we’re only talking about weddings because I’m planning mine.

“Your grandma loved that.”

“We ate cabbage rolls and pad thai and Richard drank too much and Bubby was anxious and it was just what it was supposed to be, I guess.”

“Shrimp only” by Julia at her dining table


Tuesday, March 29, 2016
2:43pm
5 minutes
from a recipe in Cowichan Bay

I could live off of shrimp only and maybe some garlic. I really could. I could live off of a lot of things that seem simple like that. I could live off of sunsets and matchsticks. I could live off of olive oil and crusty bread. I could live off of my mother’s laugh and my father’s silly singing. I could live off of silent walks to the beach and quiet crying by the ocean. I could live off of his kisses and his squeezes and his eyebrow scar and his banjo playing. I could live off of people watching and star gazing. I could live off of understanding and connecting. I could live off of summer’s heat and throwing a baseball. I could live off of burgundy pens and graph paper. I could live off of peaches and hot peppers. I could live off of magic and synchronicity. I could live off of curiosity and fresh basil. I could live off of truth-speaking and patio writing. I could live off of my belly soft and my lucid dreams. I could live off of the perfect yawn and the perfect hug.

“Inside our homes there is usually” by Sasha at her kitchen table


Sunday February 28, 2016
11:46pm
5 minutes
From a magazine cutout

The smell of saffron and raisins, stewing zucchini
and red onion. You play with my hair like we’re sisters
and we are but we’re not. A writer from Paris who wants to
fuck you and might take me too if I offered tells us about
his book. “It’s a ghost story,” he says, rolling a cigarette.
“Aren’t all stories ghost stories?” I ask, mostly myself but
also you, and a little bit him. He looks surprised and asks
if we want to go to the underground liquor store to get wine.
You know ghosts, haunted by things I won’t about
until three years from now. I’m haunted by what I can’t even feel
let alone speak. Sister sister sister.
We follow the writer into the souks
like his ducklings. Every so often he looks
over his shoulder and smiles. He goes into a shop
we wait outside adjusting our scarves and our approachable expressions.

“KEEP REFRIGERATED” by Sasha at her counter


Saturday February 27, 2016
10:56am
5 minutes
From the tetra pack of arugula

“You can keep your shrubs and your sourdough starter and your kombucha mother!” He says, throwing his cup at me. Luckily it’s tin and so it just sort of bounced on the floor a few times. I laughed. He didn’t.

I love Chris, but like, he isn’t the one. I always knew that. He was a good bang and had a great beard and he knew how to give amazing foot rubs and make great spaghetti sauce.

I don’t think I’ll get on Internet dating or anything. I’m going to get really into infusing… Vodka, vanilla… You name it, I’ll infuse it.

“imagining our future.” By Sasha at the UBC Learning Exchange


Wednesday February 10, 2016
7:08pm
5 minutes
CBC.ca/books

I imagine our future as orchids
as shooting stars
as bits of sand when
under a microscope
the whole universe

I imagine our future
can’t help myself
I’m a dream junkie
arm bruised with pockmarks of
maybe and when

I imagine our future ceilings
catching wishes in open laughter mouths
I imagine our future claw foot tub
warm water swirling down the memory drain
I imagine our future babies
All cheeks and nerve

“slow motion fireball” by Sasha on her couch


Sunday February 7, 2016
11:06pm
5 minutes
from a thank you card

you came in like a slow motion fireball
wheeling and turning like a tumbleweed
bumping into a crow and a willow
diverting directions until here
you are
blowing kisses into my breast pocket
putting jokes inside cookies and taking them
out of the oven when they are still gooey
still soft
you cam in like a slow motion fireball
my life
i thought it was whole as it was
turns out it was missing the deliberate steps
the smoke
the sparks like aurora borealis across the sky of this place

“what you can expect” by Sasha at Harvest Community Foods


Monday, January 18, 2016 at Harvest
5:32pm
5 minutes
from an e-mail

I wouldn’t say no to you becoming a seagull and riding a wind pattern West. Because that’s what you need. Because your wings are achy from underuse.

I would kiss your feathery cheek and whisper, “be safe.”

I would watch as a feather fell into the water and I would strip off my clothes and run in even though it’s cold out now and I would catch the feather in my teeth and carry it to shore.

I would wonder when I saw other seagulls in the weeks to follow if perhaps it was you or a new friend.

“a wacky one” by Julia at her dining table


Saturday, January 16, 2016
12:05pm
5 minutes
overheard on the 16 bus

I don’t know what he meant when he said “That’s what you do.”
Said like an insult instead of forgiveness. Said like punishment. Said like tar.
I said I was sorry for nagging him and he said, “That’s what you do.”
Bells. Sirens. Those words went off in my brain like a fourth of July massacre.
That tone.
Loud.
And clear.
But I don’t know what he meant, that I nag, that’s what I do? Like he’s come to know me as the type who won’t ever pick a battle, or back down from an opinion that not everyone shares?
Or that I am sorry a lot and so I apologize a lot, and maybe that’s the thing that I do.
Either way it did not feel like a compliment.
Or a way to mend the bridge that we had both taken a match to earlier.
I wanted to reach him when he felt far away.
My instinct was to cry so I made very sure not to.

“a wacky one” by Sasha on the 16


Saturday, January 16, 2016
11:03am
5 minutes
Sasha’s notebook

He’s got that dancer body
He’s proud of it
Like lightning
Like trouble
He moves with grapefruit grace
With big hands and a bigger heart
With grace and assuredness that belies his
twenty two years
He inhabits every inch of himself like
a
proclamation
Like he’s arrived and we’
re late
I’ve never seen a body like his body and I don’t know
what to do with it
When I stand
naked
in front of him
nipples shy
hips like the winter grey moon
he
he looks
a shooting star in periferal vision

“Bowl of acceptance” by Julia in the guest suite


Thursday, December 31, 2015
5:31am
5 minutes
Overheard in the Living Room

Honouring our mother we stare deep into our blood with a little wink and a hug saying “we can only go forward now.” Your heart rests just above mine like it was designed to. You came first, you reached up to the sky where you saw endless possibilities and I reached up to you because I believed you were as high as I needed to go. Now we lead each other, honouring our mother, giving her the gift we refused to when we were young.
“Please don’t fight.” “Why can’t you two be kind to each other?” “Tell me, do you treat your friends this way?”
We didn’t know it at the time that we weren’t treating each other like anything but ourselves and we both had a lot of figuring out to do. We threw self-blame and self-hate and self-wondering because we were each other’s mirror and we saw ourselves reflected back through shades of green in a way we couldn’t understand.
I let your heart shift around on mine to find its spot. I keep you there like a stamp of time and a promise of forever.

“But it’s long, you have to go way down” by Sasha on the top floor at Bowmore


Saturday, December 26, 2015
1:52am
5 minutes
overheard at YVR

I am not the martyr you’re looking for
m for the mother that shamed you into thinking you could never be enough
a for the assumption that all women have a daddy issue
r for the restful quiet after the storm has passed
t for the time you take to love me like a snail inching his way towards water
y for the years we’ve done this over and over always finding the patience a mirage in the desert stretch
r for the reason why we show up again and again even when we don’t want to the quiet voice that lives in the root of the heart knows

“You wanna build another house?!” By Sasha on her couch


Tuesday December 8, 2015
11:49pm
5 minutes
overheard at Arbutus Coffee

I want to love you wide open
an avocado pit in your centre that leaps
out of my hand
I want to love you until you’re spread thick on toast
butter knife dull
When you breathe I see your future on the window pane
It’s here
with me
It’s there
with the waves and the million dollar sunset
I want to love you wide open

I want to build you a house out of music
Ray Charles and Frazey Ford
Otis Redding and Ani DiFranco
I want to live in those harmonies and
those soul grooves
with the bass line as our walls and the horns section
as our ceilings

“that time of innocence” by Sasha at her kitchen table


Tuesday November 24, 2015
11:02pm
5 minutes
from a poem by bell hooks

it was that time of gold
the innocence of maple butter
slathered on cheeks kissed by the wind
a typhoid of hormones
your fingertips a garter snake in
the zucchini flowers

it was that time of innocence
too much lavender incense from
the dollar store
chipped nail polish tea leaves
empty fortune cookies celebrated
leaving more room for our dreams

“Your vision, values and needs” by Sasha on her couch


Sunday November 1, 2015
11:32pm
5 minutes
An ad for a Life Coach

Your arms around my hips
I’m Aphrodite
I’m the Appalachians
I’m striking a match and setting the sky aflame
with the colours of our love

Your head in my lap
I’m the Saskatchewan prairie stretching all the way from
somewhere to nowhere
I’m the North Star
Guiding migrations and permutations

Your forehead pressed to mine
I’m more powerful than Plato
I’m brighter than the sun on the Sahara
I’m stronger than a thousand elephants charging East
I’m ready for all the rocket launches and the boomerangs