It’s never good to be woken up by the police knocking on your door, but that’s what happened. First off, we live in an apartment so it’s kind of rare to have anyone knock on your door unless you’ve let them into the building. I’m brushing my teeth when I hear knuckles wrap the door and my first thought is that it’s the landlord, which isn’t good because I’m not on the lease and he told my girlfriend he’d raise her rent if she had someone living with her. I hide my toothbrush and pick up a can of cat food, which we decided would be our go-to alibi to evade the landlord and explain why I’m here: feeding the cat.
Surprise, surprise, 2 cops and me holding a can of tuna. And they knew my name. Did the landlord call them? Did some miserably discontent tenant realize I’ve been receiving mail here for 2 years and complain? I bet it was that new French couple!
The cops were here because a concerned neighbor called them after seeing my trunk open and some maps and cds scattered in the alley near my car. They traced my VIN# through the DMV to get my name and address and came to see what’s up.
You own the black nissan parked in the alley?
Did you leave your trunk open last night?
Well, you’ve been robbed then.
Why don’t you come outside and check it out with us.
They seemed a little put out that I was so unalarmed, but the truth is - I told them- this just happened a few months ago, and then again a few weeks ago so I’m kind of over it. I keep my sleeping bag in my trunk for emergencies with a blanket, some pillows and a roll of duct tape and that was stolen, which sucked, but it’s the type of thing people living in the street would use at least, I rationalize Catholically.
The cops watched me look through my sparse belongings and asked if there was anything they could do. I peeled a long strand of brown hair off the back seat and said:
this isn’t mine. Do you think it’s the person’s who did this?
Hard to say. We all seemed to agree. I told them I’ve seen Law & Order and is there a hair database? Cops on Law & Order seem to get suspects that way.
No, they said, halfheartedly. I was only halfheartedly holding out for the database to exist anyway.
There’s so much car theft around this neighborhood. Mostly people living on the street. You should get a car alarm.
i had one, but it was wired incorrectly and would drain my battery so I had to disable it.
Well, you should get another one.
It was true. it was the best advice. I needed the money for it. I thought of all the other things I needed money for and it was overwhelming so I just continued to rummage through my car trying to notice what was different. When I looked up again, the cops were gone.
When the cops were gone I nearly stuck my hand through a used syringe on the floor of the backseat. Heroin? Diabetic Insulin? Who knows. Stranger blood drying on my backseat (not the first time, funny enough. I drove this kid to the hospital down in Rosarito, Mexico once after he sliced his hand open trying to punch through the spinning blade of an industrial fan outside a bar); Also this scepter-like instrument they must’ve used to wedge into the car, then forgot about when they were high. I mean, seriously, look how ominous this satanic ice pick is:
Strange morning, to say the least. I hope the sleeping bag gets put to good use, Fucker
Near Buried Window
Near Buried Forest
Near Buried Rapunzel
Near Buried Fence
there isn’t any language in the buried, only the near buried
Excellent interview with Noy Holland in The American Reader:
"The notion that a writer “graduates” from the story to the novel is demeaning to both forms: it makes of two things one thing; it asks the story to submit to the demands of a novel (here we get the tour guide); it makes the story a means to an end. Practice. Enormous Changes at the Last Minute and Honored Guest; Jesus’ Son and Reasons to Live; Last Night; Nightwork; Airships; I Would Have Saved Them If I Could; The End of Free Love; Farewell, Navigator; Pastoralia; Stories in the Worst Way; Criers and Kibbutzers, Kibbutzers and Criers; Stories in an Almost Classical Mode—please. These are not practice. The sprinter is not in training for the marathon. The love affair isn’t a marriage. (Is there something in the culture’s affection for the novel that is cousin to our bossy mid-country piety: eat, drink, and be married? Could be.) The culture and the industry will do what they do. No use arguing. Better to stop up your ears and secede.”
I love everything about this quote. Note the subtle (killer) reading list (for those interested in a mystical education) and the closing touch of advice: Better to stop up your ears and secede.
ADAM GNADE FANS
Signal boosting here!
Anybody out there got one?
Jessie? Rich Baiocco?
I am trying to locate and purchase “The Darkness to the West” and “They Will Stand On You and Spit (with Bart Schaneman)”. These are his only written works (I am aware of) I don’t have, and I would love to read. Give me a price. Please, hit me up!
i have a copy of The Darkness to the West. Message me your address and I’ll send it your way
Or before then, I wonder, before that, before the body had been seen at all, before the nets, the slow boat, before it was decided to drag the lake - then - even before then - before it occurred to anyone that someone was going to have to decide to have the lake be dragged, or not - I am not saying yes, or no, only that I wonder - no, that I suspect - hope, I hope I am not alone in this, in thinking that in the decision made there was likely to be, apt to have been, some notion - that in the spectacle of the body, in the freak show of the body, was the promise for them, the endurance for them, of some fresh exile, some uneasy glory.
You will know the place, should you ever come, as soon as you have seen it. You will see it from the dirt road - the house leaning, and leaning, slumped, from the narrowing wind from the hollow.
Should the stone in the road you are walking past lift up on its legs and move, pick it up. It may be Vernon.
The spotted dog is Bingo, her paws webbed for swimming.
The goosenecked goose is Gander, hitched with a rope to the trailer hitch.
And the swaybacked mare - what of her? She lay in the grass behind the barn that stands beyond the slumping house and squeezed out her dead filly.
And of the mother?
And of the father - what shall we say of him?
Each evening two wealthy women come down to the water & bathe
his dreadlock, long after a body has burned, lays mud-clumped
knit like a squid & a copperhead in arms
of a torn sweater - they bury him in the manzanita grove
but the chaparral was thick & the dirt dry to cover
in dusty winds it peels up like a leaf,
like a tornado takes a house
to claim a family, to stun a cynic, this dread writhes
until even snakes are scared, until even copperheads cower
& these sisters of wealth, with faith, bend beneath the river
& these discreet evenings writhe with transformation,
the moon caught spying through chaparral, speared on a branch
for all to poke it’s innocence
burst down to riverlight & shadows
where two faithful women have widowed a part of their husbands each
the way a locket of hair widows a fading moment from a wealthy memory
these water rituals
you don’t have to understand our secrets
claim back the widowed hearts,
the dead leaves
Our skiff nosed down and flattened. We had chosen each one stone. We held them. It was all we could do to hold them. We tipped, tucked over, dropped ourselves into the water.
All the moon long, we fell. The stones rode against our bodies. Past breathing, unsharpened things we fell past. It was pleasing. Our lives grew strangely pleasing. We were told the lake had no bottom. It was said the lake had no bottom. Our lives grew strangely pleasing. Such creatures - whiskered, feeding things, shelled things - we bumped past. We came upon the lake’s dark bottom.
Did you think we would die of it, Mother?
To you, lad. And to you, my sweet. May we have a good long romp of it. For who will love what we love?
What bright house?
What reading tree?
Who will love our dead for us, the wormy dog at our feet at night, the harpooned corpse of a baleen whale we walk a day to see?
Noy Holland, ‘Orbit’ (from Spectacle of the Body)
This story, holy damn. 80 pages. I just finished it and I’m speechless. But obviously writing about it and wanting to share with everyone so whatever that thing that works in good writing and storytelling (that Internal Joy Reblog Button) worked on me in this story. No one writes like Noy. Not Faulkner, not Gass. She’s carved her own spot with ‘Orbit’ and this story came out like…over 12 YEARS AGO! She has 2 collections written since but I haven’t read them yet. Yet.
YOU GUYS ARE FUCKING HEROES!
The indiegogo to re-print my Do-It-Yourself Guide to Fighting the Big Mothefuckin’ Sad is 93 percent funded after only a WEEK. My big hope is that we can go over the amount so we can print more copies. The more copies we make the more people it can help. I’m pretty okay with that. FRIENDS, LET’S DO THIS!
This book is going strong. I see it all over Tumblr, people reposting pics of it, quotes, and saying the kindest things. Some special kind of strength, this little one. It certainly helped me out times I needed pep talks and no B.S. Help keep it in print for others who might benefit from a read