Wednesday, September 10, 2008


A little poem surfaced yesterday, perfectly preserved in the recesses of my brain, reappearing now as waters shift in there.

O Sternenfall
von einer Brucke einmal eingesehn--:
Dich nicht vergessen



Oh, falling star
once seen from a bridge--:
to not forget you

to endure.

~Rainier Maria Rilke


I don't know any German, not really, but I'm rather good with remembering seemingly meaningless ephemera--foreign words; the precise dates of occurrences inconsequential to me, happening to strangers; someone's face, still puffy with sleep and the old narrow bed; tiny objects held only briefly.

Figure modeling is excellent for memorizing things. You scan through reams of text in your brain as you hold still, so still, and when you come upon something you don't quite recall, caught on a snag, you worry at it, like a bad memory or a bad tooth, thumbing that page over and over in your brain until you can resolve the inaccuracy. I don't know what disturbed that snippet and made me recall it so vividly and suddenly. I stopped working and said the German words aloud. Rather poorly, I suspect, but there was no one else there to hear me torture the language. After writing it, Rilke changed it a little and ended "Der Tod" (Death) with those lines. Rilke said that the last three lines (the ones above) burst in on his brain unbidden, and resolved it suddenly.

Just won an Arty award for being a super genius. Sadly, I probably can't attend the awards party, complete with tantalizing open bar, because I don't actually live in Utah. Maybe I will allow myself a rare beer tonight to celebrate and make up for what I'll miss.

Someone keeps buying things off of my wishlist on Suicidegirls, but sending the gift to themselves or it is lost and absorbed by the postal system. I keep expecting these phantom gifts, in a continued state of mild expectation, checking for little brown packages on my return from school. No packages ever arrive, no stop motion animation DVDs to fill me with the half poison nostolgia from when Tommy and I had a non-dialogue film festival just for us two and his cat, the three of us curled on his couch having thought better of sex and diverting it into obscure sensualities, no behind-the-times comic books for my niche friends to remark on how I just barely started reading that. Is the phantom the gift?

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