“translator, teacher” by Julia at her desk

Monday September 2, 2019
5 minutes
from a bio

in the offering tonight, over papaya salad too bitter
and a bucket of rice as plain and soothing as it gets

a slight hesitation of fear is replaced with the true
realization that this is what we do, this is what we make

And yes i say yes to you asking with your teeth giddy
and yes i say yes to the work that is transformative

because this is what we do, I do, we can remember
And you want to come home to yourself and i want to

greet you at the door because you are so damn alive
inside when we’re scheming together and i am so much

more reliable now that i’m not fucking with that old
stuff like i used to, so when we make a decision i can

tell you honestly why or why not or when or how or if
And the heart is less stutter these days, more roar

The brain is more fire these days, less air, the triumph
is in the decision to collect our secret vulnerabilities

at the foot of one another and laugh there about nothing
even when the chicken is too dry and the work, we know

will be long, or hard, but good. Always, always good.

“as a result” by Julia at the Green Grind

Friday, November 24, 2012 at the Green Grind
5 minutes
Letters in Toronto Life
December 2012 issue

Contrary to common belief, I am a very happy individual. You may know me from the furrowed brow section of my face; the one that comes out to discourage you every now again. It’s my thinking face, let the rumours be dispelled! I think with my eyebrows. Or with the top quadrant of my face. Don’t you walk with your knees? Or Talk mostly with your teeth? Welcome to the Freak Show, my friends. Every one of us is a twisted piece of art, and as a result, we stand out. You think I’m angry? I’m not. I’m processing. You think I hate you? I probably do. I’m kidddddding. I don’t. But I look like I do and I promise it’s not just a weird defense mechanism. It’s the thing my face does because it wasn’t taught properly from birth. I literally came out of the womb this way: brows crossed and hands balled into tiny, yet powerful, fists.
I smile with my whole body. Did you ever notice that? The way my laugh shoots into the air and calms the threatening clouds above us? It’s real. At least you know when I freaking mean it. Unlike the people who don’t look upset when they’re thinking, but instead just look overly interested. Overly sympathetic. They probably are, don’t get me wrong. And maybe their faces are just more developed than mine. Emotionally. But can we truly go on and begrudge someone for responding in a way that we don’t like? It’s just their face!

“Not wanting to be left” by Julia at the Green Grind

Wednesday, November 14, 2012 at the Green Grind
5 minutes
The Wooden Horse
Eric Williams

Adrenaline was pulsing through Abbot’s veins. He had been running to catch the 5:05 bus but had gotten there 11 seconds too late. He was angry now and threw a rock at the moving bus’ windshield to demonstrate his displeasure. The bus driver stopped and pulled over. He got out, a fat almost blue looking man with white hair stumbled down the steps and approached Abbot. Abbot stood firm, wanting to fight this man so hard for not stopping for him earlier. For taking the time now to come out and address him as if his swollen legs and lungs running to catch him 30 seconds earlier wasn’t enough of a reason. The bus driver walked toward him and raised his arm. What was he going to do? Hit him? There were people around. Abbot was beginning to get scared. I WAS LATE. He shouted. Trying to sift through his brain for excuses : my wife is in labour, my wife is dying, my wife is in labour, my wife is leaving on a plane in less than 20 minutes. He couldn’t say anything, not much of a liar. The bus driver grabbed his lapel and started to drag him across the street. Abbot squirmed and squirmed but the bus driver’s grip was strong.
THE STOP IS ON THIS SIDE. The bus driver said, and let go of his coat.