Monday, June 16, 2008

Peppermint Dissolving Deep in Her Cheek

picture me, softly
I came to you mostly
with whiskers of filament
tying my hands.

now here i am, ghostly,
god-heaven-and-hostly
with kisses of peppermint,
midnight demands.

but think of me, gently
your patience is kindly
sweeping up the tenement
buried in sand

until we are, lightly
covered almost nightly
with nothing but firmament.
That's how it began.

30 comments:

Elaine & Belinda said...

yey!!!!!! So fluid and feathery :) go Charissa! Its the summer of art and letters and music, let the cross pollination begin

we've already linked you to our blog

sending smiles and encouragement
bel

Shipwreck said...

'Rissa, this is really really lovely. If I'd known to expect words like this I'd have hassled you to start this blog years ago.

Miss Elaineous said...

I love this.

I love every bit of it. In fact, I keep reading it aloud, because of the rhythm and flow of it.

It sings.

oddinary said...

I am sort of embarrased to have written it, but it still makes me feel kinda nice

pastel fingers
bumblebee stinger
black cat kisses for the rock and roll singer
papasan chair
we swam in the sea there
we ran through the fun fair
with the stars and the night air
we give and receive
all these colors to breathe
I know you believe
and just that makes it real.

oddinary said...

Legendary silent film mogul Mack Sennet on the love of his life, Mabel Normand-

"She was like- she was like so many things. She was like a French-Irish girl, gay as a wisp, and she was also Spanish-like and brooding. Mostly she was like a child who walks to the corner on a spring morning and meets Tom Sawyer with a scheme in his pocket."

Mostly.

oddinary said...

Lemon flavored cookies, "Italia" with pictures of old buildings stamped onto the surface. Sugar glazed, encrusted with crystals.

A five pound bag of Skittles, found on the sidewalk outside the corner store one morning. Skittles have 35% Vitamin C per serving, and one of the main ingredients is APPLE JUICE.

Pan seared Mahi Mahi, cut into heart shaped chunks, thin Italian crackers with some kind of basil and aged cheese baked in, 3 kinds of pasta, THREE-
alfredo, pesto and marinara, also shrimp tails in butter and garlic... for dessert 1 slice each of strawberry cheesecake, choc-o-lat and BIRTHDAY cake!

some Chinese soup, rummaged from the trashcan and eaten on the steps in Kerouac alley

CREAM horns. (they make you poop.)

butterscotch suckers at the doctor's office.

vegetable gumbo with Old Bay seasoning (Old Bay passed out by girls in Old Navy on Market Street)
-a nectarine

cous cous with gravy and hot sauce, salad, half a glazed donut, two cups of coffee THEN YOU GET SECONDS!!



That that I have my guitar back i don't eat this good.

oddinary said...

Lemon flavored cookies, "Italia" with pictures of old buildings stamped onto the surface. Sugar glazed, encrusted with crystals.

A five pound bag of Skittles, found on the sidewalk outside the corner store one morning. Skittles have 35% Vitamin C per serving, and one of the main ingredients is APPLE JUICE.

Pan seared Mahi Mahi, cut into heart shaped chunks, thin Italian crackers with some kind of basil and aged cheese baked in, 3 kinds of pasta, THREE-
alfredo, pesto and marinara, also shrimp tails in butter and garlic... for dessert 1 slice each of strawberry cheesecake, choc-o-lat and BIRTHDAY cake!

some Chinese soup, rummaged from the trashcan and eaten on the steps in Kerouac alley

CREAM horns. (they make you poop.)

butterscotch suckers at the doctor's office.

vegetable gumbo with Old Bay seasoning (Old Bay passed out by girls in Old Navy on Market Street)
-a nectarine

cous cous with gravy and hot sauce, salad, half a glazed donut, two cups of coffee

(THEN YOU GET SECONDS!!)



That that I have my guitar back i don't eat this good.

oddinary said...

a bee in a pastel puff of pollen
she was a smile when he was solemn
a mouse in an Arab shiek's turban
scurrying cheese behind the palace curtain

graffiti in sanskrit
the words are blurred and smudged with stolen handprints
the camera iris blushed and winced
when the girl walked past in the sun

oddinary said...

the smell of curly blonde hair
skin divers with aprons full of pearls

spinning racks skewering love letters,
damp and impossible to read

blighted like the skin of a goat
we rose to the top of the hill

mischief was an unravelling scarf
that rolled me away from her bed

never would the tune repeat,
whose melody opened the trees,
whose blossoms watched from above,
whose curtains drew open and closed
so toy ballerinas could dance

oddinary said...

her tiger stripes tasted like black licorice
when the tops spun their dust devils of cinnamon
her kisses could blister the blackest enchantments
and salt the enticements of men

faraway the wheels were spinning with glee
the bedsprings were moaning like cabaret stars
blood was the season and switchblade the trees
with the gasp of electric guitars

her ice cream amazement melted in time
her legs disappeared 'neath the frost
engineers bellowing "blow whistle blow"
as the noise gathered pitch and was lost

the boy with his hat and his scuffed leather shoes
and his silvery tin full of mints
sat on the steps of a hill made of sand
while the the breezes eroded his prints

"oh the nimble dispersal of prints!"

oddinary said...

things I have observed lately-

a resturant named Mochicha... from across the street the host looked small, Italian, with shap features and a bald pate

barrels full of candy at the sweets shop on Fisherman's Wharf
(I could only stare pathetically through the window like the little match girl)

classic car from the 50's, beige, two doors, conservative yet sensuous, streamlined... with a sign in the back window that read "NO"

Smoky the Bear billboards in North Beach... one across from Washington Square, the other across from St Francis cathedral, done in the classic style, with one small Warholian touch- discs of fire dancing in his pupils

on Vandewater Avenue, 2 small trees planted in spaces along the walk, with their trunks wearing small signs, "Our trees are dying. Please don't pee here."

(Barrels of candy! They should put jack-in-the-box puppets in there to suprise small children that walk by!)

Remember the rainforest cafe?

Washington Square park- copper colored dragonflies flittering in the mid-afternoon sunlight, while tourists had there cameras pointed elsewhere. Masterpieces of whizzing lateral movement.

Pizza Marzcapone DISCONTINUED by Trader Joe's. There can be no heaven in my mind, or in my pantry.

I also don't have a pantry.

Charissa said...

I was just today thinking about people peeing all the time in that alley. I am glad the trees are fighting back. I like to picture them making little signs together, laying on their tummies sprawled out with their crayons trying to think of the best, most diplomatic wording.

I like Smokey the Bear. But lately I'm way into Paul Bunyan and, most importantly, Babe the Blue Ox.

oddinary said...

I was sleeping about three blocks away from there for awhile. In a lovely little alley with orchids and vines

That was until they stole everything that even matters to me. Pretty much everything that was sustenance for my spirit is fucking gone

oddinary said...

the halls were festooned
with jars of perfume
uncapped and exhumed
in tendrils of gray

their smoke silver trails
and spider web veils
made senses set sail
one wild afternoon.

the catepillar king
was away on a meeting
and the murmursnails were feasting
on an unfinished tune.

the candlewick smells
rode a slow spinning carousel
and honey was a dream-well
that got you drunk too soon.

oddinary said...

I like to put a lot of salt on things because it reminds me of what your lips might taste like right now

oddinary said...

barren in the trees

oddinary said...

STEVE WINWOOD+TOM PETTY+GOLDEN GATE PARK= COMPLETEFUCKINGAMAZINGNESS

you are still the best person to go to shows with

oddinary said...

from Ray Bradbury-




In the dreaming coldness of ice like someone fallen and slept in snow avalanches a thousand years, forever young, was this woman.
She was as fair as this morning and fresh as tomorrow's flowers and lovely as any maid when a man shuts up his eyes and traps her, in cameo perfection, on the shells of his eyelids.
The lightning-rod salesman remembered to breathe.
Once, long ago, traveling among the marbles of Rome and Florence, he had seen women like this, kept in stone instead of ice. Once, wandering in the Louvre, he had found women like this, washed in summer colour and kept in paint. Once, as a boy, sneaking the cool grottoes behind a motion picture theater screen, on his way to a free seat, he had glanced up and there towering and flooding the haunted dark seen a woman's face as he had never seen it before, of such size and beauty built of milkbone and moon-flesh, as to freeze him there alone behind the stage, shadowed by the motion of her lips, and bird-wing flicker of her eyes, the snow-pale-death-shimmering illumination from her cheeks.
So from other years there jumped forth images which flowed and found new substance within the ice.
What colour was her hair? It was blonde to whiteness and might take any color, once set free of cold.
How tall was she?
The prism of the ice might well multiply her size or diminish her as you moved this way or that before the empty store, the window, the night-soft rap-tapping ever-fingering, gently probing moths.
Not important.
For above all - the lightning-rod salesman shivered - he knew the most extraordinary thing.
If by some miracle her eyelids should open within that sapphire and she should look at him, he knew what color her eyes would be.
He knew what color her eyes would be.
If one were to enter this lonely night shop-
If one were to put forth one's hand, the warmth of that hand would...what?
Melt the ice.
The lighning-rod salesmna stood ther for a moment, his eyes quickened shut.
He let his breath out.
It was as warm as summer on his teeth.
His hand touched the shop door. It swung open. Cold arctic air blew out round him. He stepped in.
The door shut.
The white snowflake moths tapped at the window.

oddinary said...

broken glass in a dirty black hat
butterflies trapped in a mailsack
the sound screeching out of a larynx of cats
the ribbon that winds through the cataract

where is the girl with the buttercup lips
leaning against something delicate
crumbling into daylight and drift
pinched at the corners with sadness

this photograph sack is warm for the sleeping
fingernails puncture the celluloid breathing
cranking it backwards in slow-motion seething
black stitched with stars, hung with gray

pleading in tones soft and slow all alone
singing it over and over alone
gusting, emoting and floating alone
down the street, up the stairs, never home

oddinary said...

everyday with an unfathomable ache

I strain my stupid head thinking of you

but cupcakes don't taste as good...

jokes are never quite as funny...

nothing is ever so sweet

as laying shoulder to shoulder with you.

oddinary said...

please tune your ear to the call of the divine
of hands bound together with filiment line

lips whispering/ of loves incantation
forever insistent, forever impatient

a distance of breath,
the summer stretches for miles
measured in sweat and collected in vials

a glimpse of your face in a dewdrop of light
a flame in the folds of the dark cloak of night
a beat from your breast, a beat from your door
a squeeze from the fruit that I drank from before

a tear for the morning, a kiss for goodnight
a wish for the witless who's given to flight
a trick of the wind to convince him he's right

a black cat and cormorant bite
a black cat and cormorant bite

oddinary said...

and then he was gone like he never even mattered.

(I can't feel you! I can barely feel anything! There is wind and pain and time and pain and wind!)

If only she could say "love. heal."

If only she could reach down her goddess hand and help him bloom again

If only she could cut through the layers of shame and abuse and sickness and alone, cut through to something green, something warm, something pure

and then he was gone like he never even mattered.

and I wanted to say "don't you remember this? or this?"

position her in such a way that the light and the wind would set her back to the way she used to feel

If only she could pray. quiet. silence. a soft breeze in the desperate cacophony of confusion and uncertainty

If only she could say dear boy, why are you crying?

If only she could support, bend, stretch, open, receive, encourage, forgive, REMEMBER let the flame lick and scorch away everything but right now, this moment and who I was that night, this day, in those pictures, in her arms, as it slowly swirls and develops a face

I love this girl. I simply don't know what the fuck to do. If only it could be simple, if only I could be new...If only I could convince myself that it wasn't all in my head, and me just another boyfriend on a hanger in an untouched part of the closet. If only I could convince myself that any of that time we spent still meant a thing to her. I don't want to be poison. I want to be wine. Does she ever drink wine anymore?

oddinary said...

I miss the sound of artificial thunder in the produce aisle at Safeway while buying ice cream at 2 AM

yesterday I saw a man in a dirty t-shirt. it was the cover to franny and zooey, the plain white one with the stripes in one corner? but he explained it was home-made with markers and looking closely I could see the sort of pointillist effect of the ink and where the colors had run together from the laundry

it was one of the coolest tshirts I've ever seen

hey im sorry for bringing up stuff... i want to come to terms and start again if we can. can we not agree that we both love each other and that neither of us really wants to see the other one in pain?

oddinary said...

the apple pit prophet
with seeds in his pocket,
her hair in a locket,
with farther to run
a time machine attic
all teeming with static
they bled something magic
so magic could come

cylindrical sounds
in the ferris wheel grounds
are you there even know are you there even now?
are we rythmic and round like the shimmering sound
of the merry going round over ound

when your carousel heart came a melting apart
and the hot eye of night burned a hole in the star chart
with terrible feelings beginning to march
would you search for the shape of my hand
could we make it I think that we can

oh girl could you go
could you slip through the wriggling window
there's something I once showed you that no one but you knows
if you sing to it softly it grows.
when you're pinking with checkers
I'll be the director, and you'll wear electrical clothes-
your chess fingered feathers
are wings for the weather
and props from an old vaudeville show
the strings ever sighing and trickling by him
the fireflies dance in the glow

like a glint in the wriggling window

oddinary said...

dovetail lips, the soft imprints of footprints
the studying of classics, the studying of classics
the tell-tale way you swoon and kiss
as if anything could blemish this, as ether to the alchemist

a puddle song of children
with their dusty palms of chalk
on an old abandoned building
if these crumbled walls could talk
if the the sky could rain with candy canes
and tears all taste like salt
if taste was all this heart could do
would tired toungues still talk

would you hold my hand and made it grand and take me for a walk?

oddinary said...

oh, but you are so very far away
and mice are dreaming of cheesy souffles

the dry, eager tinder of my fascination
the lingering sting of a thousand sensations

the architect of cities carved from applewood and bone
the celestial streets that I walk all alone

the place that you hollowed out and bade me to live
and keeping me warm like no home ever did

I'm sending you fistfuls of black orphan kisses
to light you like pumpkins and promise you Christmas

a mouse in the teacup and more in the dishes
I love you, I paint you,
I wet this brush with wishes

oddinary said...

you're a little lantern
swinging in the tree
the sweetest little lantern,
glowing in the green

oh you magic lantern, will you ever shine on me?

oddinary said...

the Princess and her feline velocipede
powered by mirth and ferocity
peddling down hills, for the childish thrill
on the whisper-thin rails of a story

on a bike that's shaped like a kitty-cat
through the old loop-dee-loop and the klickety-klack
the bike and the girl, eating asphalt and curves
and the 15 live mice in her knapsack

the whiskery threads on the handles
are burning through tunnels like candles
streamers and feelers on this hungry two-wheeler
with a pail for the beach and some sandals.

Step back when she's barreling through!
That cat is a beast that might eat you!
when birds won't suffice
or a stray shaft of moonlight
only fat little children will do...

Oh the adventures they had!
this girl and mechanical cat
their tracks in the sands of some half-buried lands
and their names written down in the Almanac

her ripe apple grin bringing joy to the King
and the little girls ask for her aoutograph.

oddinary said...

I hope you know yesterday was a full moon.

Not that that's any excuse, of course.


(this would be a great caption for a one paneled comic about a werewolf.)

jESSE said...
This comment has been removed by the author.