“Fall in love” by Julia at her desk

Monday July 8, 2019
5 minutes
From a Bard on the Beach flyer\

He’s in this blue t-shirt with a little pocket
the kind of blue a leading man would wear
the kind of leading man who makes friends with
the kind of guy preparing a poke bowl on his first day

He’s beautiful
I mean really beautiful
This eyebrow that he has, man oh man
with the scar he got from running into
the corner of a table before his brother
was born, man
I’m a goner

I love that he laughs at his own arms
for no reason, and why, who cares,
let’s laugh like that until forever

He is getting softer by the minute
and growing smarter by the day
I am seeing clearly these months and
trust me it is good and it is good

I wish you asked about him
I wish it hasn’t been a year and a half
since you said his name out loud to me
as if he wasn’t the biggest part of
my body
As if he wasn’t the one giving me
new life when I thought a day was
like any other day

He doesn’t become less good because
you don’t say it
I want you to know that
He becomes more, I think
He is always becoming more

“the snow falling like confetti.” By Sasha in the bath

Wednesday February 20, 2019
5 minutes
The First Morning
Edward Abbey

snow falling like confetti and all the beautiful people are out walking walking moving through the upside down globe sparkle like the rare diamond that you are wink at the beautiful person so sure so clear so blue skied so freckle and bloom

have i seen you before do i know you where are you from where are you going hey could we please may we please hey wait slow down slow down slow here we go here i am i feel this good when i’m around you

i feel beautiful in this city especially when i’m open-faced clear-faced no more hiding

snow falling like confetti

and we fall again and again

friendships and bluebell babies and penmanship and tacos on the corner

“The girl looking like Catherine Deneuve” by Julia at her desk

Tuesday December 4, 2018
5 minutes
Fall Is the Last Season of the Year
Nasim Marashi

I don’t want to say she had a pouty mouth but I guess that’s what she had.
Made it look like she was always trying to seduce her Cheetos.
Somebody in London once said that she was so beautiful some man
harassed her at the grocery store and she had to stop shopping alone.
All because of her face. I know a woman that beautiful and she once told
me that she never wanted that kind of attention. She never asked for it.
So the woman in London–even her friends talk about her perfect
face when she’s not around. They forget what else she’s good at, or which
jokes she’s told. They all wish they could be her. And she’s there wishing
she didn’t have to be. But no one would understand if she threw back a drink
one night and told everyone that she was tired of being beautiful. They would
all pause dramatically and stare at her, drinks in mid lift, until she broke out into
hysterical laughter. She’d see that she wasn’t getting through and remember
that beauty is not the right kind of sadness to have.

“my drunken soul flies” By Julia at Bean Around The World

Tuesday July 26, 2016 at BATW
5 minutes
from the write up on the painting “Ascend”

Heaven forbid I tell you how I actually feel. I say that under my breath because I’m too afraid to say anything about how I actually feel with full voice. What the eff. Where did that start? When I was a kid? As everything in this life does? I had to do what you did when we were young because I wanted to be you and the only way I knew how to be you was to do what you did or what you wanted. That made sense. I was looking for lightening. Wasn’t about to spend three to five years wishing I was you without trying to make it so. I still want to be you on most days. You were older than me then but now you’re a painting. I see you still: beautiful and still. You’re not going anywhere and I don’t have to run to catch up to you. I don’t have to hold my breath and count to three because you’re not running away from me. I am a mess. It makes sense that I would want to live your life and not mine. But I still can’t tell you how I actually feel. Because my soul is drunk on doubt and it flies high when it’s left to its own devices. You are still the moon, and I love you for that. The shiny thing in my sky that makes me want to open my eyes and see…

“In just 10 months you have come a long way” by Julia on the 99

Tuesday May 3, 2016
5 minutes
From the Twitter account of the woman sitting in front of Julia

Look at your new smile
Your new confidence
Your new found love for yourself
You see me see you
I see you
I have always seen you
You see me see you seeing you
It is beautiful
In all the ways this world is beautiful
In all the ocean songs
And amethyst hearts
And moon cakes
And rain forests
And sounds of a baby’s laugh
Your new you is an old you returning
A home where you can
take off your shoes
Stay for a while
And dance in the magic suit you were born in
Look at your new wisdom
The kind that comes from
Re-learning how to trust yourself
Re-learning how to choose yourself
It is whole and it is warm
I would hold it
but I’ve already gotten so much
You keep it for now
Let it fill the cracks that once split you open
Let it fill the space where you said yes
To being more alive
Than yesterday

“Won’t you please please help me” by Julia on the 99

Thursday, March 31, 2016
5 minutes
From the Beatles song

If I knew what to say to you I would already have a book filled with writing that’s beautiful
poetry that looks like you
I would have pockets filled with love notes and kitchen drawers overflowing with to do lists that have your name scrawled all over them
to love: you
to touch: you
to kiss: you
to be grateful for: you
If I knew what words to string together I would have yard after yard
like a decorative threaded popcorn line at Christmas
I would wrap you up in it
I would fill the day metaphors of you

“She locked me in a room until I said a password” By Julia at her desk

Friday, August 7, 2015
5 minutes
from a story on The Moth

Come on Sid, I said, face buried into the wall. I’m right here. Right beside you.
I don’t want to come out, she said.
You don’t have to, I told her. Don’t do anything you don’t want to do.
Do you hear that? She asked me. Whispering just loud enough to make out.
What do you mean?
I didn’t hear a thing.
The music. It’s beautiful..you don’t hear it?
Describe it to me, I said, leaning my head back toward her.
It’s like a snowflake, dancing, and spinning, and falling softly on a bed of rose petals.
Yeah. You should hear it, Ray.
I’d like to.
You’d truly feel it, she said.
It’s okay, I told her, don’t worry about me.
It’s not something I can keep, she said.

“The days will be longer” by Julia at Zia Kathy’s house

Sunday March 8, 2015
5 minutes

I suddenly became the girl who sits cross legged at her typewriter with her lamp weirdly perched on the bed beside her knee. It happened in the moment where I wanted to feel alive and well and proper and good. The lighting wasn’t right and somehow being closer to it felt more rustic. It felt the way a real writer would sit. Propped up against a few pillows, wrapped in an itchy couch throw. I knew that I was okay with the emptiness that was leaving my body because I could feel my lungs filling with a golden breath after so long without activity. In and out, lights on and bright. The days, I realized, would be longer from that instant on. There would be an abundance of abundance. How beautiful and mysterious and possible it all began to appear. You and your day will work together. You and your night will snuggle up and sleep soundly.

“She’s a super creative super babe” by Julia at her desk

Thursday February 19, 2015
5 minutes
from a Facebook post

I thought she was younger than me when I first met her cause of the way she only talked about guys finding her attractive, which party we should go to on the weekend based on which guys would be there..and I mean, yeah, she was beautiful and she obviously had lots of guys interested, but it was the attitude of a 20 year old, and then all of a sudden, I find out she’s 32. It rocked my world. And I’m not an agist, you know? Because when I thought she was younger than me, I was still cool with hanging out with her. And then she was older, and the level of respect I had for her didn’t match anymore. So that’s why we stopped being friends, you know, not cause she’s not nice, cause she is, or at least she was or whatever, but it was me. I couldn’t get past it. I don’t know. It sort of just got inside my head and stuck around. Maybe it was also because she was a self-proclaimed “true artist” and I never saw her create anything.

“super true to who they are” by Julia at Katie’s flat in London

Monday December 8, 2014
5 minutes
from an interview with Annabel Soutar

I have been telling myself for one whole year that I am good and worthy and beautiful and enough. My life coach told me I should recite these things and try to remind myself that I actually believe them. I started trying to believe them one morning in April of last year because it was the spring or something and things seemed like they were being reborn. I wanted to be reborn. I didn’t want to hate myself anymore. I didn’t want to wish I was born of a different woman and therefore raised by one, believing I was just different and not the me I actually was. The process was a long one. I was not the me I actually was or wanted to be, but the me I had no choice in being. The dead me with crispy hair. The forgotten me with only 5 friends at my funeral. I had a lot of visions that I would never wake up. So I went to her and told her with my blood: HELP.

“do something which both parties desire but are unwilling to do” by Julia on Nicole’s couch

Tuesday September 2, 2014
5 minutes
from the English translation of mamihlapinatapai

It was a look. It started out that way at least. He saw her standing in the rain with a broken umbrella at her feet and melting ice cream cone in her hand. She was letting it drip down her wrists and arms. It was sort of beautiful. Like an abstract oil painting of a feeling or a sentiment, captured by circles and lines and bright colours all winding into each other trying to tell a story of life and suffering.
She didn’t notice him there because that would have diminished her moment. She didn’t see anything but the rain falling around her so hard it looked like there was none coming down at all. She didn’t see the look he gave her which came from not his eyes but his chest. A heart beating wildly inside and for something he couldn’t quite explain or express. It wasn’t a quantity he could estimate or a dream he could decipher. It was her in all her perceived loneliness, in all her pain that he was adjusting to. Without moving, careful not to disturb her; careful not to disrupt the catharsis that was forming in his throat.

“I am not sure at all” by Julia at Dufferin Grove Park

Thursday July 10, 2014
5 minutes
from a quote by Erica Jong

From your shaky hand on my shoulder, marking the birthmark we lovingly call “Africa”, I can feel what you want even if it’s gentle and smooth. The touch, from another, in any shape or form always reaches the insides more than we think they will. You tell me you’re here now and that you will be here tomorrow. I love you for that, and for that alone if I didn’t already love you for all your other things. Your skin on my skin makes me feel rare and luminous and open and strong. You look me up and down and you say, “your beauty.” And you mean it. And somehow in this shared circumstance “your beauty” is better than “you’re beautiful” because you don’t think before you say it, and it comes from your truth place.

“Negotiate with agents” by Sasha at CSI Coffee Pub

Friday, October 4, 2013 at CSI Coffee Pub
5 minutes
What Is Dramaturgy
Literary Managers and Dramaturgs of the Americas

A: You’ve got a wish on your cheek…
B: Pardon?
A: (clears throat) You’ve got a wish on your cheek.
B: Excuse me?
A licks a pointer finger and presses it to B’s cheek. He shows her the eyelash.
B: Oh! Ha ha ha –
A: Should you use this on or should I?
B: Knock yourself out.
A closes his eyes and wishes hard. He opens his eyes and blows on his finger. The eyelash remains.
A: (under his breath) Shoot.
B: Are you finished with that newspaper?
A: Yeah, I guess so…
B: I just want to read my horoscope, you can have it back when I’m done.
A hands B the newspaper. B flips to the page with Astrology and reads.
A: I’m Capricorn…
B looks up.
A: … if you’d like to read mine. After yours of course.
B: “You will meet a beautiful stranger. Your life will never be the same.”
A: (laughs) Seriously?
B: (standing up as the subway door chimes) Oh yeah.
A: Well, you can’t just –
The subway door chimes again. B exits.

“STOP HERE” by Sasha at Rena and Tahir’s

Sunday, July 21, 2013
5 minutes
from a traffic sign in Mississauga

She’s wearing a World Series sweatshirt and cut-offs and I don’t know how, but she manages to make it look like couture. She’s wearing dark red lipstick. That’s why. Lipstick makes it different, makes it sparkle, makes it bomb, but I mean “bomb” as in “exploding light”, in a good way. I glance down at her belly and I realize that she’s preggers, but must only be three or four months along. That is why her skin is so luminous. It makes my womb ache, just to steal glances at her, to taste the sweetness of the dew on her cheek. I’m so attracted to her I could almost call myself a lesbian, in this quartz crystal moment. Beethoven is the soundtrack, regardless of the fact that my iPod is playing A Tribe Called Quest. I’m scared that I might start crying if she gets off the train, that my heart might break worse than when my mother told me I was an accident thanks to Tromba, worse than when my father forgot my twelfth birthday and spent the day alphabetizing his record collection.

“Greener than yesterday” by Sasha at Thom and Shelagh’s kitchen counter

Friday, July 5, 2013
5 minutes
Jeremiah T. Scott

A photograph from your website. He’s printed it in full colour. I doubt he has a printer, which means he went down to the copy centre and paid the thirty cents. Plus computer time. Unless he brought the image, your image, on a USB key and that’s… unlikely. It’s that photo of you from Halloween in third year when you were a bumblebee. You were doing the kissy face. You looked beautiful, of course. You’re not smiling, you’re looking to the right as though there’s someone there. There was probably someone there. Maybe it was Steve, your boyfriend at the time. I wonder where Steve is now. Your nipples poke through the black leotard that you’re wearing. He’s gone the whole nine years and printed the picture on card-stock, not just average Joe paper. I turn the image over and on the back is an old piece of sticky tack. It’s blue.

“The moon is my sister” by Julia on her bed

Thursday, June 20, 2013
5 minutes
The Early Morning
Hilarie Belloc

The moon is my sister, did I mention that? Yeah. She is. She’s pretty incredible, I guess. She’s always there when you need her, and she knows how to divide her time properly so even if she can’t fully be there, she still gives you a decent chunk of her. And she’s beautiful. She really glows, I mean, I don’t know if you’ve ever been lit by her on your way home at night, or saw someone else in the gentle light she casts, but, she’s something special. She’s humble, too. I don’t think she ever asks for anything or tries to get you on her side. I mean, I guess she doesn’t have to since people tend to gravitate towards her anyway without her having to try. I mean, it must be nice. To be her. The oldest sibling with such a cult following, especially if you’re a vampire or someone who likes vampires. And to know she doesn’t have to feel bad for being lazy because she is always doing just so much. Lazy people get strained necks because they don’t like to sit up all the way when drinking a glass of water from their nightstand, and have too much clutter because they don’t throw out empty boxes marked ‘Files’.

“boyfriend’s oversized sportscoat” by Julia on the 506 going East

Thursday February 7, 2013
5 minutes

He stepped into the rain with his umbrella half closed, thinking to himself, things could be worse. He waited for Dana to come out of the house. Waiting was something he did well because being late was something Dana did professionally. She couldn’t be the first to arrive at a party and be seen waiting at a table, or at the bar. She liked to make an entrance, but mostly because she didn’t like to be kept waiting. She wasn’t insanely late, just never on time. Tonight, he knew early on, Dana would surely want to arrive only five minutes after the scheduled time because it was important. The rain began to come down a little harder, Dana still inside the house. He opened his umbrella all the way and stood at the end of the driveway, humming to himself. She did this so regularly that he knew if he stayed inside with her, he would get stuck answering questions about which shoes went better, the nude or the black, which earrings, the dangling ones or the hoops, which purse, etc. He eventually began to lie to her, saying yes to whatever thing she was wearing at the time to reduce the time it would take for him to be honest and for her to change yet again. He’d rather wait outside, light a little fire under her ass, and then be surprised by how beautiful she managed to look anyway, even after so much time deliberating.

“supplement” by Julia on her couch

Wednesday, December 26, 2012
5 minutes
the Emergen-C packet

Jackie’s sick again. Nearly coughed up a whole lung at dinner. Poor girl. She doesn’t believe in washing her hands and I can only guarantee, based on my life’s experience, that that’s the one wrong thing she’s doing.
She thinks it strips your hands of their natural oils and things. I never met someone like her and when Ian brought her home, I could tell from our very first exchange that she was different. She looked like a beautiful alien: large eyes, white blonde hair. I wanted to smack her in the forehead just to see what a pretty thing like that would look like when she cried.
Ian told me she was a true angel. Well, in my humble opinion, I never met an angel who’s so clearly without the luck of God.
Every time she moves she winces, trying to stifle the moans. Her body aches, I can hear her trough the vent. Was hoping Ian would convince her to take some cough medicine or a Tylenol, but she’s pretty persistent on only putting natural things into her system.
Jackie’s nice enough, don’t get me wrong, just a little misguided, I think. She could afford to supplement some of her wacky ideas for a spoon of Buckley’s.

“Serving 4 blocks” by Julia at her kitchen table

Thursday, December 20, 2012
5 minutes
From the back of a Godiva chocolate bar

A hundred pretty ladies wearing aprons and artificial curls in their hair were discussing the annual block party. Kimberly, a saucy blonde, was dividing her white computer paper into sections, and Matilda, the tiny brunette was playing hangman with her self. Matilda didn’t want to be coming to these meetings without an idea, but she couldn’t bear the thought of sucking up to Kimberly just to be heard. Instead Matilda never spoke. She wanted the society ladies to come crawling to her when she made it seem like she had something they all wanted…
Kimberly handed out a square of perfectly torn paper to each lady present. She told them all to write down one word.
Matilda looked at the paper for what felt like hours. She didn’t want to write the wrong word. Right now, she sensed, was the perfect opportunity to show these mousey, stuck up, manufactured women what she really thought.
Kimberly went around collecting the papers. She began reading out the words when she saw fit. “Apples. Good choice, Meridith. Ooh, Gifts. Nice job Linda.” She walked by Matilda with a smirk on her face. “Let’s see ladies. What’s the good word from miss Matilda Matthews?” Matilda handed over the square, a fire burning inside her. Kimberly looked down in shock. “Oh my Lord,” she whispered.

“appreciate something different.” by Julia at her desk

Wednesday, December 19, 2012
5 minutes

It’s all too real and blurry. It’s all to shake and hurry. It’s all too warm and furry. It’s all too break and bury.
One of those things was written in a letter to me from my grandmother. She died before I was born, but was documenting her life so that I might have some semblance of her in mine. She had bright red hair, even in her old age. She dyed it, of course, but it looked like it wanted to stay vibrant for her anyway. I only got to read the letter when I turned 18, so it held some mystical properties that I believed would save me. My grandmother was filled with wisdom and ideas. She used to talk to animals just to work her thoughts out. She lost her hearing by the time she made the video so it’s very loud and very shouty. God love her. She was one of a kind. Always telling people around her that she knew she wasn’t beautiful because she was able to make others laugh. Apparently, according to my grandmother, beauty and comedy didn’t co-exist.