“Resource Recovery” by Julia at her desk

Tuesday May 22, 2018
10:44pm
5 minutes
From an apartment garbage bin

It is as good as bringing Jesus back from the dead
comes with a message and a couple lessons
a few good hugs and whistle tucked at the side of the mouth

Heart strings pulled and twirled around the finger

A lightness of being in a room together without all that unknowing

It is a pulse after a flat line
a dream after insomnia
a hope caught in the wind long enough to blow a kiss at it

The body starts up again after rest
after laying down on the track and wishing

The body breaks free from the wire and builds a blanket fort instead
something soft to land on
something easy enough to lay all the weary and weighted

The sun sets in the sky drawing heat to a close
The shadows paint the city in all their perfect silks and blues and pinks

We eat.

“Let me die, dear Lord” by Julia on Salt Spring Island

Friday May 18, 2018
10:22pm
5 minutes
The Birth House
Ami McKay

I am giving up my sad boots and asking for something a little less heavy. I want to tip toe toward you and maybe we can all quiet the floor. I want us to be happy. I don’t know how to make that sound better. No metaphors. No regrets. Happy and whole. You can take the old me and kill it. Ask someone if you need to use a particular tool to save the rest. What knife would the good Lord use? Let that one sing her last song at the moon and go gently into the earth. Only death can make room for new life. Only goodbye to sorrow can rebuild.

“She actually cooks” By Julia at her desk

Wednesday May 16, 2018
12:16am
5 minutes
Overheard in the dining room

I read your poetry hoping to find a piece of me there
Maybe a big piece that cannot be mistakened for someone else
When I uncover the grave there is a body buried alive
barely breathing, but not dead yet
I weep at the beauty of those words–stiched together like a
quilt to leave hanging on the fraying loveseat
I find a way to see your heart in the hurt
And we are both bodies buried alive, barely breathing
but not dead yet
I have hooked up the tubes and wires and run you through
my veins delivering a kind of test to all my internal organs
It works
I am working
You can be my blood and I will keep pumping
pumping

“Canada’s Indigenous communities” by Sasha at Benny’s


Tuesday, October 20, 2015 at Benny’s
2:21pm
5 minutes
An email from The David Suzuki Foundation

I watch as they search and I’m full and empty and nothing and everything
I help them I try to help them
Feeble attempt at solidarity
Until the sun sets and breath is visible
Until icicles form inside my ears
“Let’s call it a day,” Bruce says
and I’m grateful
“No.”
Jenny glares at me
at her father
“We have flashlights, we have tea…
What if she’s out here, freezing to death?”
Bruce goes home and I stay
Jenny and me
I’m half her size and my heart beats in my ears
the whole time
“She’s not dead,” Jenny says
offering me the thermos
“I know it.”
I nod
I drink deep
Cedar and something I’ve never smelt or tasted
“She’s somewhere.”
My sister
At home in Edmonton
Putting her daughter to sleep
Saying prayers about monsters
Kissing her nose

“Violence faces” by Julia at her desk


Sunday October 4, 2015
11:21pm
5 minutes
from a tweet from the Green Party of Canada

I am wearing a mask every day for a week leading up to Halloween to protest all the shitty costumes I have seen in my day. MANY. You were wondering? There have been MANY. I have decided to wear the mask to illustrate what Halloween is for. It is not for putting on a single headband that “resembles” antennae. That is not what it is for. It is not for putting on skeleton earrings and calling that a costume (I’m talking about you, Linda, the quintessential receptionist). It is for a million reasons, among which is raising the souls from the dead (obviously), but the most important one is for DISGUISING OUR FACES. How is that so hard? Something scary or rotting or dead or all of the above, is, quite frankly, the most preferred type, but it can vary depending on your IQ and your tax bracket.

“Our favourite woman is missing!!!” by Julia at Valens Restaurant


Tuesday, June 30, 2015 at Valens Restaurant
10:02 pm
5 minutes
From a text

I wait for Dany to close the door fully before I utter a single word about Cynthia. I hear the click. Dany waits at the window watching Mitchell get into his car. She makes sure he drives away then she slowly turns around.
“He’s gone.”
“You sure?”
“Yeah. Watched him drive off. ”
“I don’t think she’s dead. ”
“Don’t say that. I knew you were going to say that. ”
“Hear me out, Dany. I’ve given this a lot of thought. ”
“I don’t like that she could be alive and wouldn’t tell us. Or wouldn’t even tell her own brother. ”
“That’s just it, Mitch can’t know about her. No one can. ”

“Celebrating those who had died” by Julia at the Dufferin/St. Clair Public Library


Monday February 9, 2015 at the Dufferin/St. Clair Public Library
12:22pm
5 minutes
The House Girl
Tara Conklin


Maggie, are you listening? I can’t tell what this thing you’re doing is because usually you’re a lot less interested and you make much more noise than you are. You find something in the room to fall in love with, to flirt with, to hold, to help, to push, I don’t know, whatever it is inside your brain that communicates with your body to do anything but pay attention to me when I need you to. Usually, Maggie, I have to repeat myself a day or two later because I know full well that you hadn’t received a word I’d said. I have gotten used to using the first time I say something for my own good only, you know, to hear it out loud, bounce it off the walls cause you never give me anything. But now it’s very strange. You could be truly hearing me. I think the only other way you’d be this still and this quiet is if you were dead. Maggie? Are you listening or are you dead?

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


Monday December 8, 2014
1:16am
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.

“documenting, communicating” by Sasha at the CSI Coffee Pub


Wednesday November 13, 2013
10:42am
5 minutes
25 Insights on Becoming a Better Writer
Jocelyn K. Glei


Bob opens the bottom drawer of his father’s desk. A pile of papers, as high as three phonebooks. Bob takes each sheet out and makes piles according to type. He’s glad be inherited the organized genes from his Mother. Bills, bank statements, letters, newspapers, clippings, photographs. He’s sitting on the floor, cross-legged, when Brian arrives. “I’m in the study!” Bob calls. Brian is growing a moustache for Movember. The guys at the club all did it together last year and Brian said it was dumb, but then felt left out. Bob forgets what the whole thing is about. “Holy shit,” says Brian, seeing his brother surrounded by a fortress of paper piles, seeing his brother sitting on the floor, legs folded like the hot yoga teacher at the Y. “Not only does Dad not have a will,” says Bob, matter-of-fact, “he hasn’t filed a single thing since Mom died.”

“Serve.” by Sasha on her couch


Monday, September 23, 2013
12:11am
5 minutes
www.foodnetwork.com

Ya know Ian? Ya know Ian who lives over der by dem pines? Ian killed his wife. I’ll tell ya the story but you have to promise that ya won’t tell no-one. I don’t wanna be that kinda gossip, ya know?

So. Story goes, Ian is a shady kinda character. He has a grow-op in that basement. We’re not talking a few plants, we’re talking a whole operation, a big ‘ol operation, with the lights and the special liquids and whatever. He had this girlfriend, Caroline, and she was around for longer than any of the other ladies. Ya know those meth head ladies? With the real bad teeth and the scratchy faces? Lotsa those ladies. Story goes that Caroline had finally had enough, she was tired of his wily ways, she was trying to get clean. She left Ian and started goin’ with some hotshot guy in Kingston, some guy who was the president of AA and in a biker gang or something. Story goes, Ian tracked down Caroline, who was cleaning out a camper on this new hotshot’s property. He shot her. Right in the head.