Audio recording on a Samsung phone and typed transcript.

In which I walk a kilometre through the Preservation Park woods while reading poetry, prose, and journal entries from my notebook. When I am not reading poetry or switching between poems, I am not walking. The kilometre is measured by a fitness app on my phone. I make mistakes while reading the poetry. At one point, I walk off the path and hit a dead end so I must turn around.

[Pages turning, rustling]

[Footsteps begin]

My life could fit on a fingernail.

Sometimes when I think too hard about my hands, I feel the bones and they are hollow.

I run my fingers over the spines of books I could never read in two-hundred lifetimes, I won’t even be able to make it back for the second.

Where will I go?

What is the best way to blind yourself?

I dangle my feet from the cusp of impulsion.

I’m watching the robin egg explode from my back porch. The sound, like me, is heartless.


I am so awake it hurts.

Eating the ground, ripping myself up from the inside out.

My best friend asks me which stage of grief I am.

I’m spinning around someone else’s driveway and swallowing the vertigo like salt water.

Time is lethargic. I am liminal.

Do you feel that? Every memory you’ve forgotten?

I left nostalgia sitting on the window sill and it has spoiled over. Maybe if I pull the curtain, it will turn into something soft and lovely like a mouthful of sand.

There is nothing more human than not being able to breathe.


Do you think at all about how no living thing will know what God truly is until it is too far from this world to call out what could still want to know?

Do you think at all about how you cannot drink a galaxy but you can swallow truth or things as big as truths?

Do you walk through a wood just to find a grand hush so loud it rots all your fruit and turns all your joys to carrion?

Do you think at all about how your blood flows so quickly that you don’t touch it?

I wish I could touch it.

I am lying, starving, staring, at a tiny split in a wall. I think I look back. A tiny world in a wall. I cannot find a way out.

[Footseps, rustling, sniffle]

The portrait of the painter looks as though Mary Shelly has metamorphosized into her soft-hearted monster. I think of him often when I observe humans looking for love. The things they look upon with disgust, reject for the tiniest imperfections. I suppose at times I am no better but I think I might be more forgiving than most. Skin has texture. One’s shoes do not define them, unless, of course, this is the intention. Hair gets greasy. It is cold season. Sometimes we misspeak and become someone else for a brief moment, a person we wouldn’t like ourselves. See, there are so many ways to hold a moment


incorrectly. It gets skittish and runs away from you in the heads of strangers where it makes a home between those fleshy folds, eats neurons for breakfast.


Frankensteins or Shelly’s monster is also a good reminder of how I am a patchwork like most [unintelligable]. These days I feel very myself but who is that if not dialogue between fictional friends, poems merely sentences long describing nothing but floorboards, and every song I’ve listened to since ninth grade and every solitary walk through the Art Gallery of Ontario? Art galleries are like orchards in that way, your eye catches on what seems like, what seems the ripest in sight and you move closer, study the work and decide that you want nothing more than to taste it in a more visceral way, get it stuck between your teeth, enjoy the sound it makes when the surface snaps open and you are snaking into it. I cannot tell if these desires are the truest, hiding beneath the fickle whims of going out, the bursts of anger, the daydreams of a lover, or if perhaps that is really all I care about and art has begun to lose its sway.


I have nothing to write about.

I am nothing to write about. 

I am a fish spine on a shore. I am starting to smell and the salt coats me, oxidizes my bones.

I am just filling pages. Nothing means anything.

Reproduce, regenerate, regurgitate.

Kill this dumb fool. 

I’m just an ordinary, loud, quiet.

I am a god. Meant to say good but Freudian slip I suppose.

What the fuck, man?

I belong in someone’s cellar. Take that as you will. 

A list of truths: Tomorrow will be the same as today, the same as today. I am going in circles and no one is in love with me. At least I love myself. 

You can love something you want to destroy, right? Proverbially, of course.


His vision has gone red. He has convinced himself over the course of the last hour that the name of his true love is floating in one of the open wine bottles on the table, in the glasses filled and refilled more times than he could count. Everyone else has found coarse confidence, recipes for laughter. Water is not as virtuous as it seems. He feels drunk on resentment. His tongue is coated in sour sweetness. He reaches for the bottle staring him down when everyone else has their heads thrown back in tipsy howls.

[Footsteps, sniffle]

Sometimes I see people unfold for one another like origami lotuses and I understand why my father is a solipsist.

Somedays I crumple at the sight of love, crushed by hands entwined.

People ask me if I feel lust and I say no because it is easier than explaining how my ambitions vanish, my poems suffocate, I unfurl into a fool.


We are preparing for the apocalypse in our subterranean dwelling. 

The moon is mine and no one else’s. It is not red.

It is my birthday next week and I hope I won’t be sad again.

I remember when I used to walk for hours to see how far away from my house I could get, past the train tracks and back again.  

When I walked through the front door, my hands burned and a rash spread across my face.

I didn’t know how to answer the question: Where have you been?

The end of the world, maybe.

No one else gets the moon because I am the only one trying to crash into it, the only one crying to it about dying. 

I’m sure it remembers us, me, sitting on my desk, arms folded on the sill like some lovelorn, hopeless maidens, maidens of the moon.

I have felt like throwing up or hibernating every day this week. 

If I fall asleep in a dream, do I wake up?

How does anyone really know the difference and does it matter?

Why does it always come back to this? She asks me, our boots in the gravel. 

There are more stars here than in our old sky, the one we stared at from my bedroom window.

The only window I have now looks up at our neighbour’s fence. I covered it with an old curtain I found in the closet.

There are apples rotting on my desk. There is mould growing on everything I own.

I appreciate the colour it adds to the bunker. 

If I sleep for a thousand years, would the moon still be here for me?

Would the end of the world have already come and gone?

[Rustling and footsteps]

Buzz my hair down to the scalp.

Make all my clothes so holy I could never set foot in a church. Not that I’d want to.

Saints peeking out of every corner, tears hewn onto their faces.

I’m jealous of people who have something to cry for.

[Rustling and footsteps]



I write not because I’m insane but because it makes my insanity tangible, meaningful.

I write because it gives my life the illusion of meaning. 

I write because I always knew this would be my life. 

[Footsteps, muffled voices, sniffle]


I write because everyday I don’t I am less certain.

I write because I enjoy talking to myself but that is generally not socially acceptable.

I write because all I have is my solitude at the end of the day and I need to make something of it.

I write because I like the feeling of words in my mouth, the look of them staring in the pages of this book.

I write because I have a lot of shit I need to work through and I no longer go to therapy. 

I write so I can be the main character.

I write because if I do not listen to myself, no one else will.

I write because I want someone someday when I am dead or disappeared to find my notebooks and make me a modern Van Gogh.

I write because age knuckles the floors and these are waves, there are waves inside of jars on the window sill. 

I write because I can’t go to bars yet.

I write because I need something to do with my hands.

I write because I’m good at it.

I write because I’m practicing for when I have someone to write love poems about.

I write because I will write poems for me and only me.

I write because I love nothing more than stories even if that thought breaks my heart.


What if I went made with words?

What if they were my life?

Everyone is so beautiful, I ripen at the sight of them.

The man asks why I write, accuses me of not knowing. 

I say I am not sover enough, sober enough to answer him.

[Sniffles and footsteps]

I love like molasses and give everyone trouble breathing.

I can’t help that none of them are black-blooded like me. 

Galaxies sleep seep from my cuts and I stare as lightyears and memories fall to the ground.

Now you can always tell where I’ve been.

Footsteps stain my father’s drawings and I string of unhappy birthdays.

Follow me to my old school, watch me smear my name on all the bathroom mirrors.

There’s a garden I’m not lying in, a cigarette I’m not smoking.

A hymn across my heart to make my blood holy, to fill my head with morning mass in my high school gym.

Doesn’t that sound like something I’d miss? 

What I need to be is the men that love a hideous god but still manage the most beautiful smiles.

[Rustling, breathing, sniffle, fabric]

In heavy coats and pajama bottoms they shambled along the shore where it met the side of the road. Mary Jane’s hot breath in a rotting salmon’s mouth was stronger than their own unbrushed teeth and night sweats, but not strong enough to clear their heads, black and thick as slugs. Two nights before he told her she made her room emptier just by sitting in it.

[Sniffle, sigh]

She made her room emptier just by sitting in it. Only after watching their mother slap him across the face– still, silent, empty– did she understand what he meant. But that she’d been an absence in his life since she stripped the photos from her walls and came back for birthdays. 

[Sniffle, pages turning, sniffle, footsteps]

He throws back the whiskey and slams his daughter’s plastic teacup onto the table.

Why do you drink your tea like that, Tati? 

He hushed her voice with a slurred goodnight.

She used to beg for his goliath hand over her face as she slept, smushing her nose and pressing into her eyelids.

He was always so afriad he’s suffocate her and she wouldn’t make a sound.

[Footsteps, footsteps stop, pages turning, footsteps]

I don’t see sunglight anymore. I don’t believe in summer like I used to, the thing I worshipped instead of the god I grew out of. 

Men terrify me into starving myself but all I listen to are their voices scratching the noise in my head over their electric guitars and skull-throbbing basses. 

All I consume is their sadness because I think in a certain light it looks like mine.

Shape-shifter, knuckle-cracker, masochist bitch.

I can’t stop thinking about all the things I am and once wished I’ve never be.

All the things I’ll never be and wish I was. 

There are some fantasies we shouldn’t have.

The silence and the monotony makes me angrier than it should and none of this shit is usable, salvagable.

What’s the point if all I do is sit around and complain, at least be a little depressed.

I’m more afriad of turning out like my mother than I am of having the same brain as my father. 


I don’t think whether love will save me.

[Footsteps, sigh, sniffle]

I don’t know whether love will save me. 

Either way if I take time that I’ll have too much of.


This is the reality of life that I stuff under my pillow, let mould in my sink.

It’s neverending, this cycle of absolute nothing.

We’re just driving in circles, passed the same signposts so many times I could see them from a mile away.

But here I am again, summer again, sulking again, sweating again, sedated again, screaming again,

Good luck with that.


The heirophant unbinds the books in an ecstatic, the righteous anger stoking itself to life. 

The Tower of Babel chokes out its final words, damning the god it was never tall enough to reach in a language no one loved enough to learn.

The Rosetta Stone erodes in the mouth of the sea, translates itself into a metamorphosis.

The Bible is burning along with every other holy text and scripture, from Wiccan grimories to The Little Prince. 

Take us away, take us away, they chant in the wounds of cities, libraries, the graveyard of war heros.

The words have all slaughtered themselves.

The world is lovely and getting drunk on its own laughter. It is the butt of its own endless jokes and isn’t that belonging?

Everything finds itself somewhere, feels like its the only thing looking.

Time is heartbeat without a body, pulsing through nothing and, so, shapeless.

Where? Where? Where? The echo asks.

[Rustling, plane passing]


[“Hey, how’re you doing?” 

“Good, thanks.”]

[Rustling, sniffle]

The girl goes up in woodsmoke and firework sparks still the world around her refuses to catch.

Of course, she thinks.

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One response to “Lumin”

  1. lmanea Avatar

    this post is very cool.

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