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the empty

The fat girl as they call her, came to school with a hypodermic needle in her backpack. It may have been to defend herself, it may have been to instigate something. She comes from a broken home and this is her second or third school. E steers clear of her, and the bullies she tangles with. It was never understood  - how things began, who threw the first insult, the first punch, the first grabbed book but the end is a chronic cycle of violence. At one point, the girl's mother got the police involved and this was seen as offensive, a step too far. The police did not resolve anything so it was all just a lot of saber rattling. That is the most common sound here. The empty threat.

Last week, there was a sobrani, sort of a cross between a parent-teacher conference and a school meeting. I was busy, so E went by herself and took notes. Five minutes in she messaged me, that I was wise not to be there. Nothing about this girl was going to be resolved.
"Boys will be boys" was all …

the ocean


There is an undertow at work, a sense of the inevitable. A shiver when you enter an empty room. There are crows fighting in the trees outside the windows. The snow comes, with barely a warning. The sky, a flat piece of paper with nothing written on it. Boots are tugged from the backs of closets. Heavy coats smell of dust, and old cardboard boxes. My gloves appear, twisted into a tight ball from the last time I wore them.

But the undertow is much more than snow, much more than cold weather. There is a shadow, and I ignore it as often as I can. But this lurking ocean, this golem - they can see the future. At least I think they can, and that scares the hell out of me. We live in a time of paranoia. Maybe we have all been living in the shadow of some fear for generations, ever since the atom bomb. Maybe the cavemen were scared shitless too.

I brush it off as often as I can. I make things. I run around in the woods with actors and cameras and brush this sense away, like a bug on a picnic blanket.







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