20 August 2014

girl in frame

Should you wish to woo a girl, or this one, step one is to find her while she is swimming in a sea of white linens, still half-asleep, still vacillating between dreams and consciousness. Find her. Kiss her on the forehead. Whisper your penultimate statement -- goodbye, you're going to work. And finally, say softly in her ear, I made you a latte. 

I made you a latte.

Ah! The invitation to dream longer, when dreams so urgently beckon -- return, return! And to know there is coffee waiting.

The very magic of a latte whose existence was wrought in unseen actions (by loving hands, not your own, who didn't need to check you would want this, of course not) whilst you slept, to sleep a little longer, and then to wake to its splendor, alone in your apartment, which has become, simply, a housing place for your books.

And that is all good and lovely and well. Truly. But...

Its goodness hinges on its transience. Clings to it. And you know this. As all good things do. It is utterly untenable. So easily sipped too quickly, or not fast enough, growing warm on the nightstand as you yawn, brush disheveled fringe from your eyes, and write.

You know this moment, and you know this deep-seated but ever-fleeting feeling. Because it's you. It is you, girl in frame.

Enlightened to your own ephemerality. Self-possessed by your own wild heart which churns, and moves, and chases one thing, and then another, just when you thought it was at rest.

There are the things that hem your rampant soul in -- the handsome one you love, the books, and the weighty cameras, the letters, your yearning uterus, the cups of coffee, and the need to write, write, write. The material stuff that reminds you -- you are of this world, and in it, you exist, you are.

Ah, but there are wonderful, beautiful, ineffable cracks in the glass, and those quiet things are yours and yours alone, and every girl in every frame has her own. These cracks are not breaks, but are grooves, like the ones that crisscross your palms in glorious unsymmetry.

Oh, that history has painted you a portrait -- and bosomed or bird-boned or berated or brave -- has painted you a permanent thing. Lovely. Still. Bird on a telephone wire, one outstretched limb, a chair.

But you, girl in frame, you are less a portrait and more a film, and that is your secret, is your incandescence.

19 August 2014

things in reverse

It's funny how things work in reverse sometimes. For me, editorial process has always been monumental. In photography, and writing, and everything else. I got to thinking about this because, of these snapshots, about half were taken spontaneously. As for the remaining half, I had made a new filter in lightroom, and, picking up my camera, I could mentally apply that editorial effect. I could see how it played with the image -- in a few cases, changed it drastically -- and thus snapped an image, not for its own sake per se, but to be played with. It sort of rendered the image an object of curiosity all its own.

Where am I going with this? Oh, that is ever the question. I have been trying -- so far, knock on wood, successfully! -- to be more disciplined about creative writing. And the process is as important to me as the production. And so, I often find myself studying others' writerly processes. There are the less prolific day-to-day Jack Kerouacs who gut their souls in short, inspired sittings. There are the disciplinarians -- Steven King comes to mind -- who map out plots, and write deliberately, always making sure their stories are effective, hemmed in. There are the writers who write and write and write, and then delete and transpose massive chunks. There are writers who write exactly 1,000 words per day -- rain or shine, unaffected by their heightened or waning imaginations -- they write to make sure they've written. Joan Didion has said she doesn't feel terribly connected to her first novel -- that she didn't knew exactly what she was doing at the time, how to be true to the ideas in her head. Ah, but she wrote it, and what that sparked! Then there are the writers who pain over single words and sentences -- minute fractions of the thing, one at a time -- and then continue on.

I'm very much in the camp of those latter writers -- who tweak and prod in absolute, unending agony. But I'll be sure to make my word count, too -- it just sometimes takes me all night. It is a rather unfortunate combination, but I've a strong conviction that seven hours of work that yields one perfectly-formed sentence or image is worth the three pages of rubbish.

My editorial process inspires me in a backwards sort of way -- chasing that elusive white rabbit of a story (or, more, a tiny part of one). It kicks in, rears its glorious, angry head at the line level. Oh, that I could suspend its appearance until I finish a paragraph, or a page! I am eternally envious of writers who can write more freely, who can find the write words later, who can fill in the blanks...

Oh, but then I wouldn't be me.

18 August 2014

new slang

tee: c/o Style Lately // tutu: c/o Space 46 Boutique // Ballet flats (in nude): UO 

And sometimes, a storm's sudden onslaught thwarts your photoshooting plans. So you stay indoors. You self-timer it. And then, you find yourself a good window from which to watch the rain pour and the lightning strike and all is well. P.s. Lightning strike -- don't you love when the verb & noun are the same form? I love it so much. Nod to my heart's resident poet.

Anyway, talkin' 'bout language. I'm not one who uses much slang in spoken conversation -- my-go to for expressing casual, good feels is groovy, and beyond that I'm pretty hopelessly uncool. It's literally the only thing I'll say in response, and I just end up sounding like a sad, scant-vocabularied parrot. I'm working on it.

But, being a softer-spoken kinda gal, I think it's fun to wear something that does a little talking of its own, like this tee from Style Lately. And does it go with a full-skirted tutu? Well, of course it does.