A Clean, Well-Lighted Place

I'm a Midwestern pilgrim who reads and writes in the West. I'm a conversationalist and a walker. You can reach me here: jreed1490@gmail.com

Dark Charms


Eventually the future shows up everywhere:
those burly summers and unslept nights in deep
lines and dark splotches, thinning skin.
Here’s the corner store grown to a condo,
the bike reduced to one spinning wheel,
the ghost of a dog that used to be, her trail
no longer trodden, just a dip in the weeds.
The clear water we drank as thirsty children
still runs through our veins. Stars we saw then
we still see now, only fewer, dimmer, less often.
The old tunes play and continue to move us
in spite of our learning, the wraith of romance,
lost innocence, literature, the death of the poets.
We continue to speak, if only in whispers,
to something inside us that longs to be named.
We name it the past and drag it behind us,
bag like a lung filled with shadow and song,
dreams of running, the keys to lost names.

Dorianne Laux

from The Book of Men.

(Source: writersalmanac.publicradio.org)

Above the Lake


In this season the world is composed
of absence: black, which is the color
of no-light, and white, which is the color
of blank. By world I mean this snow,
these woods, this bleak sky, this mute
roar, which is the afterlife of sound.
By absence I mean abstraction, this black
brook as diagonal gash, these slim
trees as lines, vertical, monotonous,
impossibly interchangeable. By abstraction
I mean meaning, I mean human longing,
I mean loneliness accreting as quiet
on quiet, as white on bluish white.

Stephen O’Connor

A Bracelet of Bright Hair About the Bone | Linda Gregg


The Romans put skulls into their love poems.
Skeletons and dry bones along with love.
As if violet was only beautiful against
something black. We also talked of death,
I perhaps more than you. It made me happy
to think of the newly dead body being lowered
into the coffin of the other. You found
this idea impressive but terrible.
I longed for your agreement and approval.
Wanted you to understand the hugeness of love.
You whispered that our bones would be mixed 
together, but probably it was your way
to get me to stop crying and go to sleep.
Which I did, contentedly. I wanted something
to be done, some enactment to prove this secret,
this illicit love. Something too large.
I wanted it made of actual things. Dirt 
and corpses even. As real as the table you
said your love was, that I could sit down to
and eat from if I wanted something permanent.
I wanted absoluteness to be made of my heart.

(via enjambing)

Fragments are the only form I trust.

Donald Barthelme (via mythologyofblue)


Tumblr Artist

Paolo Patrizi | on Tumblr (Italy/Japan) - Starlings

"Across the spectrum of Patriziʼs work, we see an approach to visual storytelling that is marked by an intellectual and artistic vigor, at the heart of which is a compassion and feeling for the people and cultures he reveals in his vibrant essays", says Wayne Ford. Paolo Patrizi is a documentary photographer, whose recent stories explore the underlying themes and contradictions between traditions and modernity and cultural disconnections produced from rapid economic growth. Paolo’s subjects range from portraiture and feature projects to social issues and politics. His focus is always on the human and social aspects of a story.

He began his career in London working as an assistant to other professionals. While doing some freelance assignments for British magazines and design groups, he started to develop individual projects of his own. Today, his work is featured in leading publications and exhibited internationally.

[more Paolo Patrizi | artist found at darksilenceinsuburbia]