Tuesday, August 14, 2007

The Parts Post II (Or, Sometimes I feel like all these characters at different times to make one big yin-and-yang Nathan)

The Parts Post I (Or, Sometimes I feel like both these characters at different times to make one big yin-and-yang Nathan)

Monday, August 13, 2007

Audre Lorde's "Poetry Is Not a Luxury" from Sister Outsider

"We can train ourselves to respect our feelings and to transpose them into a language so they can be shared. And where that language does not yet exist, it is our poetry which helps to fashion it. Poetry is not only dream and vision; it is the skeleton architecture of our lives. It lays the foundations for a future of change, a bridge across our fears of what has never been before."

All copyrights belong to Audre Lorde and associated parties.

Friday, August 10, 2007

The Mother

Mom sent Jordan, Aaron, and me this funny/bittersweet email recently. It captures her (dark) sense of humor and her willingness to say it like it is. With her permission, I've reprinted it here.
Dearest Darlings,

I thought that Jordan's birthday would be an appropriate time to fill you in on two new things going on in my life. I just found out yesterday that I can sign up for one year/52 weeks of one hour per week, one on one instructions with the Genius instructors at Apple. It is only $XX; well worth the price for you guys not to lose your minds trying to explain computer things to me over the phone. I can even use the service in different cities all around the world.

#2 I just signed up for funeral insurance. $XXX if I die regular and double that if I die by accident and triple if I die on a airplane or other common carrier. It will cover the cost of roasting me and having a nice party or dinner or vacation or whatever so you guys can get together and reminisce about how I beat you, put cigarettes out on you, etc.!!! So, when I am peeing in my pants and I don't know what is going on please feel free to push me off of a cliff for the double indemnity. If you do that b4 I am ready, I will haunt you and make you shit your pants in public and no one will ever want to be around you, so there!

Love to you all,
The Mother

Wednesday, August 08, 2007



i am not worthy of children's swings
of flaky rusted poles and scooped plastic seats
i am witness to adults instead
as i do underdogs and think about organs, blood
goopy intestines that turn into someone
i can be a boy or girl if you want me to be
i will babysit you or steal your riches
i will save you, string you up on a makeshift cross
marry you then cheat on you
i am pure organ in any case --
i swing on the inside

Copyrighted by Nathan Buck 2007

Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Snippets (inspired by My Secret Pal's post)

Dreaming about Mom and Dad and Molly and me in a paddleboat in a canal. Dad is driving the paddleboat (it has a car's steering wheel) and Mom's hair is pinned up with a bobby pin. Mom and Dad tentatively chat, share stories, hold peace. Molly and I sit facing one another in the back, our legs entwined. There's a hole in the boat, and it fills with water, but we don't sink. I lean back, and rest my head on the water in the trail from the boat, and my hair streams out behind me, and people are watching from the shore.

Tara and I sit facing one another in Jeff's Place, a coffeeshop in Newport. I write and listen to my headphones; she reads about languages and buries her face in her books. The moment is just perfect.

Later that night, a group of us sit in the hot tub under the stars. There seem to be billions of constellations (billions more than usual, I mean), and within forty-five minutes I see four shooting stars (and maybe a fifth, in my peripheral vision, but that one could've been an illusion).

Julie and Aggy and I go for a walk, and I can't help but be absolutely charmed by Aggy's cuteness and innocence and kind spirit. Good girl.

Mom and I hug.

Ben and I hug.

I dream about Tori, and Theresa.

I really can't wait for Alanis to come out with another album.

The houses in my neighborhood, and Ben's neighborhood, always hold my attention with their very-cool architecture and unique personalities. Again, I am in awe of all the different Portland alleyways.

I miss Carly, and have been thinking about her a lot. Hug soon?

Am really liking my progress on my novel. L and K are holding my hands, and guiding me.

Went to the Chinese Gardens downtown with the participants and staff from work. Loved feeling, and smelling, the Mimosa tree. The leaves and blossoms.

Miss Karin. Want her trip to Pittsburgh to go safely.

Hoping Karla is well. Her baby is growing lovingly inside her.

Wishing Christina the best at her new job, and wishing her cat Raz all my best.

Looking forward to the Twin Peaks box set.

Loved Charlie's card and recent email.

Loved getting my letter from Alie.

Thinking about Anya, in the Ukraine, she of the Guardian Angel tribe.

Thinking about Russia, and the playground, and the coldness & heat that both Russia and Scotland represent to and for me. How these got captured when Mom asked me into her room to show me the photograph, the way the light hits my face.

Thursday, August 02, 2007


I've been making one CD a month for B since December. Here's an email I recently sent him:
B, the August edition is in, so I thought I'd provide a summary thus far, to get you up to speed. The August edition was interesting to put together; I had different ideas about what I wanted to do, and how to do it (yes, I think about these things a lot!); so, I went with my instincts and just let my guts pull out the songs to put down, and I'm very happy with the result. I've decided to provide an image/description/feeling to capture the essence of each comPILation:

Half-Birthdays & Winter Solstices:
*You're ice skating on a pond in mid-December, and one of your skates breaks and you twist your ankle. You're sitting there, in the chilly air and in pain, but you can't help but look at the falling snow, the way it coats the trees. Then you see a figure in the distance, approaching. He will offer you a hand up and help you to shore.

The Mer Collection:
*Your mom tucks you in and reads you your favorite faerie tales, with the night-light on. Then she leaves (the door is still open a crack), and you drift off to sleep, and dream about the future. In this future, the faerie tales let you down -- they fracture and disappoint. But inside the core of them--in your own DNA--is a way to hold onto the lessons they teach and take these with you when you wake up. You wake; the night-light has burnt out; your comforter feels warm and safe.

Two Hearts: A Unicorn Tribute:
*Sitting on a parkbench, your memory sifts through your lovers. You hold onto fragments, weaving them together to form a story about who you are, and who you are not. A squirrel comes up to you, and you feed it breadcrumbs from your sack lunch, and the two of you share a moment of silence.

March Into (Non) Madness:
*Winter melts, leaving behind it wet and clumpy leaves, dragged down stems of flowers, and hard ground. The garbage truck drives by, rattling and waking you, but you don't mind -- something about the humming engine reminds you of the school band you once played in, everyone dressed in red outfits with gold buttons, and this humming fills you up like a soft earthquake.

April's Fools:
*The hangover from the night before bangs into your brain, and you wake to a hammer -- someone fixing the roof on your apartment building. In your bathroom, you hear the drip-drip-drip that is both soothing and irritating. Your tears get trapped behind your anger. Later that day, you shout in your car with the windows rolled up, and sense a feeling of release. Once catharsis sets in, your inner panther strengthens you, makes you wiser.

Walk the Dogwood Til Dawn:
*In line at the cash register inside the grocery store, you realize you're two dollars short for your six pack, frozen veggies, and copy of PEOPLE magazine. The man behind you sighs, but you ignore him because you're transfixed by the long, fake fingernails of the cashier. Her name is Desire, pronounced "Des-a-ray"--and when she asks you again for that two dollars you look up to see the button on her outfit: Employee of the Month. You pay for the six pack and PEOPLE, and leave the veggies.

Birthday for the Healed-Hearted:
*On vacation at the beach, you're settled back in your chair. You didn't realize Life could feel so good; you rarely let it; you rarely allow yourself that raw freedom. And, while you understand it's transitory, you understand that pain is transitory too, and you close your eyes. The sounds of the waves lapping the shore take over, and the breeze feels just right, and there are grains of sand in-between your fingers and toes. Something feels lighter in your chest, and you stand to walk, then jog, then run into the ocean. It's not even the feel of the cool water you crave, but the feeling of standing up and walking out of that same water, the way it will dry and clamp your bathing suit to your skin. You look forward to salty, crackly skin that--later--you can wash off in a bath filled with bubbles.

God Bless America:
*Sitting on your checkered blanket in the park with your friends, you anxiously wait for the 4th of July fireworks to light the sky. It's that moment before nightfall; dusk is still holding on. Earlier that day, you've bought an old American flag at a garage sale from a war veteran in a wheelchair. You want to hang it off the porch of your home, in both an ironic and non-ironic way. It stands for a government you loathe, but it also stands for a country that you love and feel oddly protective of, even with its global bully status. Your bitterness, if you let it, gets translated into a dark humor. You lay back on your blanket and put your headphones on--shutting out your friends and the hundreds of others at the park--and listen to your country favorites. Everyone thinks you only love Depeche Mode, REM, Madonna, but there's a (more than small) part of you that craves Dolly Parton's "Jolene" at least every other day. The guitars greet your eardrums and then, behind your eyelids, you see the fireworks going off. You make up your own shapes for them.
Okay, B, there you go. I didn't think about these images before I started this email. I just knew I wanted to write this email. Here you go.

Dove Hugs,