“art remains a potent weapon” by Julia on her bed

Tuesday November 6, 2018
10:05pm
5 minutes
When The Beat Takes Over
Robert Collins

maybe I said it in my sleep-
walked to a notebook with decision-bowed deep to an excellent sentence.
maybe I didn’t hide the tears when you told me that I was brave.
you knew it meant something. not a guy scoring points with just anyone by doing rollups. you had to have been listening then. to the language my eyebrows speak. to the worry walking from room to room sort of moving things to the right.
and part of me still held your motive under surveillence. even asked point blank if you meant something by it and what did you mean.

“a sleek white line” by Julia on her couch

Sunday May 27, 2018
10:00pm
5 minutes
Are You Really An Artist?
Leah Burns

You’re wearing all white and you’re okay with it. Say you’re going to go pump gas, fix your bike chain, eat a rack of ribs. Nobody tells you what everybody knows. A hundred wet wipes and a gallon of bleach. But the days are short and why wait. The nights don’t count so go to town. A bird could shit on your window or down the front of your jeans and the whole show can get cancelled.

You tempt fate like someone was paying you to do it. Hold up a mirror then disappear behind it. Throw your open wound in front of a shark. You try the rules until they’re broken and too tired to fight back. You invite disaster with every sway of your hip, every rainy day in April. When you walk back and forth you look like a q-tip or a sleek white line.

“with one hundred hands each” by Julia the VPL


Thursday March 16, 2017
6:20pm
5 minutes
Age Of Bronze Betrayal
Eric Shanower


Hold me like the sun is going down for the last time–
like the nights are long
like the mornings are extinct.
Keep me alive under a dead moon–
under a baren sky
under a hurt wing.

With one hundred hands you will know enough
how to close the door without waking me
how to prepare a tea without asking me
how to teach my skin what it’s worth.
With one hundred hands can you memorize my scars–
how the thick one reeks of curiosity,
how the raised one is a reward for the brave?

“Important passages” by Sasha at her desk


Monday October 24, 2016
8:40am
5 minutes
Judaism
Jacob Neusner


there’s a bridge atop a tree atop a cliff
it creates a passage from one side to the other
only the brave and broken know where to find it
have hands and feet that know the knots to grip and
branches to swing up from
momentum will be a friend but not a guide
only the brave and broken know the intricacies of a
delicate and powerful tree climb
at the top of the cliff and up the tree
when you make it
you’ll gaze out over the pregnant horizon
you’ll see buildings and highways
gulls and sailboats
ant-sized people
before you cross the bridge
atop the tree
atop the cliff
before you cross from one side to the other
you take a breath
inhale
all the times you’ve kissed a face you love goodbye
all the groggy mornings
before water
all the moments
like this one
that you’ve dared to resist the urge to jump

“White-sand beaches” By Julia at her dining table


Monday March 7, 2016
10:41pm
5 minutes
from an online ad

If you’re asking then I’m going, going with you, going wherever you go.
I don’t have any bags packed yet but I don’t mind getting whatever I need as we bleed.
Can I borrow your toothbrush? If you’re asking, can I share your knapsack?
I could sing you one of your favourites. You can pick the one. I know you like some feeling kinds, some country, some bluegrass, some sweet sweet soul.
I don’t care if you’re a white-sand beaches kind of thing, a hot air balloon, an air dive off of a mountain kind of heart. I am an open mess of so much yes and so little reservation.
I can curl up small on your back, or lead you hand in hand to a secret place where the pure strength river will never run dry.

“make strong choices on the fly” by Julia at her desk


Sunday November 8, 2015
10:18pm
5 minutes
from nativeearth.ca/w28series/

Okay so I started taking this improv class-that’s what they say, it’s so cool, they don’t even finish the word. It’s every week on Tuesdays and the class is 3 hours long and it is the best thing in my entire life. It’s so funny. People really are hilarious in this class so I never feel like it’s a waste cause I’m always laughing and sometimes till I’m crying and that is the best feeling. Our instructor, Vijestica is a hobbit sized woman and she has a big laugh that starts, I am convinced, in her groin. She’s always snorting and shooting snot out of her nose because she loves to laugh and gets us really excited about our choices! In improv you learn how to YES AND which means nothing is wrong and everything is a good idea and you say yes to the first choice that comes and just keep building on that until you’re really rolling with it all and the jokes just flow and the laughs just follow. Vijestica says this is a safe place to leave the everyday at the door. I am so glad to leave my everyday at the door because working in a cubicle the size of an outhouse in my everyday is actually the thing that might kill me. It’s awful, there’s no silliness or fun, only deadlines and people telling me “nice maroon sweater, Alma,” or “Did you eat my peanut butter tuna sandwich, Alma?” Here, in improv class, we all just smile and tell each other how great and brave we all are.

“These days it’s hard to get a decent haircut” by Sasha on her couch


Friday December 5, 2014
10:54pm
5 minutes
Kinfolk Volume 13

She’s so sweaty but she doesn’t want to take off her sweatshirt because it will bring too much attention. She’s only wearing a sports bra underneath. She tries to go back in. The bouncer, must be seven feet tall, three hundred pounds, “Nope… Can I see some ID?” “My coat’s inside, I’ve been inside, you let me in before.” “I don’t remember you…” “Are you kidding me? I’ve been dancing for hours, look at me!” “Call your friends and get them to bring you your coat and show me your ID.” “My friends left an hour ago…” “Well, shucks Princess, I don’t know what to tell you…” She starts to say something then stops herself. She gives him the finger. She goes around back to the alley.

“black and white” by Julia at her desk


Sunday, January 6, 2013
10:43pm
5 minutes
The Art of Dramatic Writing
Lajos Egri


Patti Oliver’s face is half black and half white. She wears face paint every day and she looks like a giant ying yang with her nose as the little squiggly line. It works perfectly because her nose is a bit squiggly looking to begin with.
My mother said she was hit in the face with a baseball but I think it’s because she’s just supposed to look like a ying yang.
She doesn’t speak much. She lets her face be the centre piece and the conversation starter. My father calls her a hippy and says she’s too into “movements”. My mother says she’s brave for being so bold.
I hate to admit but I’ve never actually spoken to her. I don’t want her face to scrunch up and ruin the pretty design. The pretty sign of peace and I’m sure for her initially, equality. Her parents aren’t even interracial so she’s really just doing it on her own. I think I respect her. People don’t know what colour she even is anymore because somehow her hands are always covered.
I think it’s deliberate. My father thinks it’s lazy. He actually thinks she just doesn’t wash her body ever but obviously she does. She kind of has to. All the paint smudging on your pillow case would really be annoying to have to clean all the time. My mother says to my father, “Rich, it’s a statement, so shut up about it.”