“younger than before” by Julia in her bed

Saturday December 2, 2017
11:50pm
5 minutes
Place To Be
Nick Drake

The trees held open the door for us today. They asked us to step through, mind the roots.
When we entered, we lifted our heads to the sky, opened our mouths in preparation, and waited to catch a droplet on our tongues. You were close to getting one. I didn’t think the tree would give it up that easily. I couldn’t catch one because I was too busy staring at where they were beginning to form. The droplets fell from the crease of the branches like an armpit or the back of a knee. I suddenly realized how disrespectful it would be to drink someone else’s sweat; something they were trying to get rid of. Something that held the awful truth of them. Our vision got blurry there, as we wept among the openness of it all. The eyes lining the trunks watching our every move, our every step, our every promise. One in particular whispered something to you. When I asked, you said you couldn’t really hear.

“living in the ordinary world” by Julia at her desk


Thursday April 13, 2017
8:58am
5 minutes
From a Way of the Heart info sheet

we show up to life sometimes jaded
sometimes living in the ordinary world
after living somewhere else with better windows
our windows here are covered in fingerprints
and year old messages birthed from
a New Year’s resolution
that we were too afraid to erase
our windows are as guarded as our hearts
which is to say
we haven’t drawn the blinds in ages
to exist in this place where
the sun rises each morning
no matter how shy
and sets each evening
no matter how bright
we must become fluent in gratitude
thank the stars for breathing us into belief
thank our mothers for smiling love into our bones
thank our fathers for being fathers when they could have been
anything else
thank our health for holding us
thank our souls in this life
for reminding us why we chose each other
in the first place

“Slack jawed” by Julia on the tub


Thursday October 13, 2016
11:08pm
5 minutes
from an email

Russell was really pleased with himself for finding a teddy bear with his own name etched in the ear tag. He believed this kind of thing was rare and meant to be and that he had some newfound super powers. Suddenly he believed he was where he was supposed to be. He had never believed that before. He attributed it to the bear finding and the sign receiving he was now very open to. He said thank you in a low whisper to his lucky stars and his Nanna Toni who was among his lucky stars but also acted in part as a guardian angel. She was a star angel. Russell liked to think of her twinkling in the sky and twirling in the wind. She never danced while she was alive but somehow afterward Russell felt like that was all she did. Aside from looking out for him. When the bear appeared to him, his face fell open in wonder and amazement for the possibilities he might get to find.

“The worst kept secret” by Julia on her couch


Sunday August 21, 2016
10:26pm
5 minutes
lifehacker.com

Somebody told me once that discharge was called sperm. Okay it was my sister. We used to fight a lot. She was older. I wanted to do everything she did. I believed everything she told me. I was so confident in her that I never questioned a single thing she said. I admired her. Now we’re older and she tells me when things I believe about myself are just stories. She tells me when she hears me choosing not to love myself. I believe her. I know she doesn’t say things now to break me down. When we were young, she wanted to tease me. But maybe to see how much I could take. How much I would hear before I pushed back. It’s trusting someone outside yourself. She knows everything I’ve never told anyone else. She will always be the keeper of my secrets. She keeps the ones I like next to the ones I never will. She keeps them for me, but she forgets they’re there. She doesn’t see me through eyes of things I wish I didn’t do. She does not love on condition.

“your hand in mine” by Julia on her bed


Saturday August 20, 2016
2:08pm
5 minutes
Heard in a song on Co-op radio

I catch myself believing I deserve better when I grab your hand in the crowded street and you pull away after only a second. I grab your hand as a gesture to show you that in this sea of people, I cling to you. I reach for you. I choose you. I remind you every chance I get that I am proud of you. That I am proud to be with you. That the touch of your skin connects me to the only things in this life that matter. And you might miss all of that if you’re not expecting to see it. If you think holding hands is something to be taken for granted. Or to be done differently, perhaps. On days like this I swim along the shoulders of other people when I think of how lonely it is to love you. How far I’ve pushed my heart into opening and how tired she is from never being cradled back. I don’t think I’m allowed to ask for more. I need so much so much so much.

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


Tuesday May 3, 2016
8:31pm
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

“The earth’s insomnia” by Julia at her “New York”


Wednesday March 16, 2016
9:04pm
5 minutes
Moonlight
Lorna Crozier


I have been out stealing rosemary again. Middle of the night. I am not sorry. But I do recognize the pattern. It’s not about much more than needing to have it in my home so I can touch it when I want to and it can calm me down. Some people do the very same thing with animals. I mean maybe they don’t go around at midnight and sneak into people’s front yards, but–I mean they feel comforted by the presence of a pet. So what? I don’t have one of those. I make do. I’m fine. Please don’t ever think my problems will be solved by a cat. They most certainly will not. I don’t need something like that. Thank you for the offer of your offer. I miss my fucking mother. I want to call her and cry and let her love me back to life. I want to tell her that after all that rosemary thieving I didn’t even put any in the roast potatoes. Because I wanted to keep it longer in a vase next to my bed. Because I wanted to hold onto her soft voice telling me for the last time that I was her laugh.

“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.

“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

“Letter Writing” by Julia at her desk


Thursday November 26, 2015
11:44pm
5 minutes
from the specials board at Our Town Cafe

Dear guy from the Turkish market buying one kilo of sun-dried tomatoes while wearing a safety vest,

You may have just stolen my heart, permanently, and I’m okay with that.
See I was looking for someone new to give it to, after I got it back from the guy I lent it to without knowing. I was tricked into telling him things about me and letting him see a version of me that most people don’t want to see, or shouldn’t see, or…Oh…now I wish I hasn’t mentioned that part at all cause it’s a bit embarrassing…..
Umm….If I hadn’t written this in pen, I would have erased the aforementioned weirdness but because I hate the way stuff looks scratched out, I will leave it in hopes that you don’t actually mind a little oversharing every now and again.
Back to the important matters at hand, guy wearing a safety vest.
I love sun-dried tomatoes so much and to see you buying them in such a large quantity is incredibly heartening. I can only begin to imagine what you’re planning to do with so many beautiful tomatoes. My biggest fear is that your wife or girlfriend or mother sent you here to buy them for the big party you’re announcing your future plans with a woman other than me at.
….Oh boy.
I wish I could erase that part too.

“I see four stages” by Julia on the bench outside Baldwin Laundry


Friday, July 10, 2015
4:08pm
5 minutes
On Writing Zion
Maureen Stanton


Day One:
listening at the door to see if Alistair is still crying into his pillow
making sure he knows he can talk to me if he needs to
hoping that if he needs to he doesn’t bring up Deb
knowing that if he’s going to, he’s going to bring up Deb
preparing to talk about Deb
hand-washing the kimono Rufus stole for me at the charity drive
listening to Marco Beltrami to help focus my intentions

Day Two:
Consoling Alistair again about Deb
Using kind words with him like Easy Does It, There There Sweet One, I’m Not Going Anywhere
Wearing the kimono in front of the mirror to test it out
Deciding to wear the kimono loosely tied when dealing with Alistair
Figuring out ways to move my body naturally so as not to arouse suspicion when dealing with Alistair
practicing the look of genuine understanding and concern mixed with attraction

“She said she was an actress” by Julia at Grange Park


Friday, July 3, 2015
3:48pm
5 minutes
said by a Valens customer

She said she was an actress
Her heart the bleeding kind
She said she was a change maker
Her heart the bleeding kind
She said she was only half living
Her heart the tortured kind
She said she was only half being
Her heart the tortured kind
She said she was a lover once
Her heart the open kind
She said she was mother once
Her heart the open kind
She said she was an actress
Her heart the beating kind
She said she was a slave to the art
Her heart the beating kind
She said she was unhappy
Her heart the breaking kind
She said she was wasn’t done yet
Her heart the breaking kind

”Many people want love to function like a drug,” by Julia on the 505 going east


Monday, June 15, 2015
4:48pm
5 minutes
A quote by bell hooks

Do me fix me haunt me lick me
i want that kind
that sticky kind
that getting matted in your hair kind
tangled in your feelings
watching a parade
dare me wear me tear me care me
i want that kind too
that exposed kind
that open and vulnerable scary and beautiful kind
accepting and overwhelming
sitting side by side at the river
ease me lift me tease me shift me
i want that kind
that vibrant kind
that moment intensifying everything is interesting kind
promises projected in each other’s eyes like a private motion picture show

“I might be” by Julia on Jessica’s couch


Monday January 19, 2015
8:40am
5 minutes
from a poster in Ricardo’s studio

I might be lost
I might be confused
I might be hurt
I might be sad
I might be broken open
I might be letting in the everything
I might be too naked
I might be too analytical
I might be too exposed
I might be getting infections
I might be growing
I might be expanding
I might be learning
I might be transforming
I might be forlorn
I might be overflowing
I might be expressing
I might be adjusting
I might be returning
I might be reliving
I might be remembering
I might be better
I might be worse
I might be stuck in my body
I might be breaking free of my old skin
I might be making assumptions
I might be transcending the space between oceans
I might be self actualizing
I might be developing a new form to exist in with a tougher shell
I might be more prepared now
I might be home

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


Tuesday September 2, 2014
11:45pm
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.

“Select your inbound journey” By Julia on Nicole’s balcony


Monday September 1, 2014
3:38pm
5 minutes
raileurope-world.com

I wrote you a note
And I left it there
In the pillow case on my side
So you’d feel my dreams when you held it tight

And you could say goodnight to me

I wrote you a note
And I left it there
On the back of a bottle of wine
So when you were toasting to us

You could take an extra sip for me

I wrote you a note
And I left it there
In the drawer with your passport and socks
So when you got dressed in the morning

You could put on a piece of me

I wrote you a note
And I left it there
On the bedside table where you’d see it
Right before you fell asleep

I left it there so you could read me

I wrote you a note
And I left it there
In the case of your favourite film
And when you’d open it up to watch it alone

You’d feel like you were watching with me

I wrote you a note
And I left it there
In the basket of all your pens
With a box of envelopes, to remind you, dear

That you could write for me

“We can help you” by Julia on Nicole’s couch


Sunday August 31, 2014
11:29pm
5 minutes
a TD bank envelope

We want you to feel at home, so take the robe, take it all! Make some eggs, make them all! Don’t feel like you can’t walk around freely. Walk around naked! We do it! We love it. You’re our guest, so please understand how genuine we’re being about keeping you comfortable. It’s our mission. We’re so genuine about comfort it hurts. It does! You need undergarments? We have those! Go through our drawers! You need any creams or lotions? All yours. If you’re feeling peckish there is a jar of gefilte fish in the fridge that we’ve all been poking at so have at it! We can help you shed your cloak of armour and guarded nature. We can help you love who you are because we love who you are! Wanna pick your nose? Go get that gold! Wanna read our diaries? Please do! Wanna nose bleed on all our white sheets? DON’T FUCKING DO THAT. BLOOD IS REALLY HARD TO GET OUT OF THOSE SHEETS. Anything else? Anything else at all? Go ahead! We want you to! We want you to open yourself up and get out of your own way. Judgement free. This is a judgement free zone!

“in any other brain” by Julia at Starbucks


Sunday, January 27, 2013 at Starbucks
5:47pm
5 minutes
Scientific American February 2013

In any other brain, I would have thought to walk right by you. Wouldn’t have heard my favourite song when I saw your face, wouldn’t have stopped to tie my boot at the exact minute our paths crossed. I would have just gone on doing everything I would have done without being effected by your smile, and your casual scarf tossed over your shoulders, and your warmth. So I’m glad I have this head with this little brain in it, because it knew what it wanted, and knew that I would be okay with deciding what I should do.
Instead you said hello, smiled at me like you already knew what I would say back, and you stepped aside so I’d have more room to tie up my pesky laces, which came undone because I was running to catch the streetcar going west, like usual. I looked up at you, somehow guided by the brain that wanted to know you; that was willing to, and I felt something…That feeling you can’t describe with words or it just diminishes it? It’s the kind that sort of runs through your whole body and then forces your facial muscles to contort into a smirk, your belly to form a laugh, and your knees to fall weak. Never would I have thought to ask you for your name, watching you strum the guitar on the street and not feeling pressure to give you all my spare change. But instead I did. Gave you a moment that I could spare, shook your hand, and was happy.