shit in, shit out

Another fear-based Facebook meme hit today, showing up in several of my friend’s facebook status messages. There seem to be some variations, but they generally go something like:

EVERYONES PHONE NUMBER IS NOW ON FACEBOOK!! NO JOKE… Go to the top right of your screen, click Account then Edit Friends. Go to the left side of your screen and click Phonebook. Everyone’s phone numbers are now being published. Please repost to let your friends know this is happening so they can remove their numbers ……by changing their privacy settings. (Privacy Settings-Phone-Customize-Only me)

Good grief. I mean, seriously. Get over it, already; there’s only one sure-fire way to keep your personal information off of Facebook, and that is NOT PUTTING IT ON FACEBOOK. Did you read the fine print when you signed up for your “free” Facebook account? The entire point of Facebook is enticing people to share their private information for corporate gain. Facebook didn’t just suddenly start publishing all these otherwise private numbers; they just added a button that aggregates published public data that was already there, entered and shared by other users just like you.

Now listen: I like Facebook. It allows me to keep in touch with my far-flung friends around the world. Still, like everything else “free” on the internet, you have to be realistic and  govern yourself. Facebook doesn’t make it super-easy to tighten your privacy settings, but neither does it make it impossible. I’ve tightened my own sharing settings down to “Friends Only” for everything. If I did set anything to “Only Me”, wouldn’t that be defeating the entire point of having an account? Yes, my own phone number is on Facebook; so my friends can see it and call me.

Furthermore, it seems to me that the people most alarmed by these “new threats” to their “privacy” are almost always the same people who so often most publicly share nearly every aspect of their public and private selves on Facebook. This does make sense, I suppose; the people with the fullest profile pages have the most to be concerned about. Again I ask: Did you actually read the fine print?

Here’s an idea: I’m going to change my status to reflect my own privacy concerns (such as they are, ie., not much). How about something like:

EVERYONES PUBLIC PROFILE IS NOW ON FACEBOOK!! NO JOKE… Go to the search bar at the top of the screen and type in your own name, or the name of anyone else you know on Facebook. Everyone’s public profiles are now being published. Please repost this to let your friends know what is happening so they can remove their profiles… waking up, people! Seriously? Good grief. Get over it: Read the fine print.

I can just see it… the start of another fine Facebook meme.


that’s right
it’s just like you

i take the water in
breathe the water in
pour it inside of me
right down inside of me
that’s right
that’s how i drink it in
once the fluid that forms the fluid once
molecules of hydration
tumbletoss and turn
once the fluid that forms the fluid once
once fluid that forms the fluid once
once flows the fluid that forms the once

that’s right
not even you
too daft to understand this thing
a simplesingle thing
a drink a draught a certain craft
the way we the world
sluice our throats a
parted-lip chuckle
a coarse shaven
hair back hand
wipes away a glow of
sweat a softwave
symphony brassy and delightful
no, not you
surely not you who
in moments desperate moments
unclips this safety belt
from your understanding
did you not even once
give into thirst

taste the formless mystery
inside every bulbous
creature of water
creature of craft and deity
creature hung long low and pendulous
creature sagging with the weight of water
oh of the weight of water
water and waters that we each and all had hung
come sprung and unsprung
that dripping beaded sac

oh but you
who coloured every thought
shaded every drop with
your own formless form
nothing so formal as this deep wallowing drinking
into the core i’ll drink to the core
i’ll drink to
the core i’ll
drink to the
core my throat all and at once
weighted now with water
my stomach pulses with that weight
my neck stretches to encompass this swallowing
endless now teeth and tongue each sucking at the other
until i stink of it

there is no rhythm
except the rhythm that
the rhythm that
is the rhythm that
and the rhythm that
the rhythm of the weight
and the weight of the water
of the rhythm that
of the weight of water
and so i pour and so i am poured
and so nothing makes a fluid sound so
fluid as the sound of fluid poured

so dance you
let the ways and means
dribble from your lips
and dance dance your dance
let the ways and means
dribble drip from your lips
touchstones as the fountains go
and i high on waterwine
will pass kindly the skin
from one mouth to another
press allrushingly the pressure presence

and that’s right
the water just like you
drinking in the water you
drinking in the water you
drinking in the water


and there
and that with that
and this is the dance we dance
over and through waters
swimming or sailing
floating or flailing
we pull this fluid
like comfort all about us
oh ah yes
there’s more of this
where this came from
comes from
goes away from
returns from

and so we go
going on parting
water cleaving waves
with hands hurried
or otherwise fingers
curled and curling
tears from dry eyes
motion stops motion
captured in some secret animation
some far and sacred place
where wallows the softy dying hulk
of remembrance
true and for truth
with no matters save
the deepening of spirit
or rhythm of waters

that rhythm of waters
that rhythm of
waters that rhythm
that staccato interlude
that finds us
again alone in
dance we jerk
and surge against
the tide rushing tide
with broken meters
feet and meters
where repetition finds
us repetition finds
us holy and washed
free from abandon

spat from the whale’s mouth
turned over once again
over and over
once again over
one last spasm sees us
our hearts souls and
sacrifices coughed out
into being once being
once being once again
until that weight
the holiest of weights
presses us down


and so then
we press on for
shore those stones
rise and risen
from the beat
of the leviathan
leave this sinking thought behind
press onward pressingly
forgetting the moment of
bite it down
between our tongues
chew and spit
the blood away we
two three me
my hands and I
slap and flail

this and that surface yields
escapes my pressing flutterfeet
lets me hear the laughter
knows my each and every failing
shows me temptation
whisks it away
comes at me in
dreams as dreams
flashes the single
light the lamp
a moth on the horizon

writes letters in the dust
inexplicable letters
one in every language
one in every dustdrop
pittapat pittaping
collapses from the sky

shied and shy
darts and ditters
stutters across
skies and eyes
sheets and sluices
falls across and over
drums along and down

waves as rain
crumbles inwardly cuts
slices chokes
and holds us here
disobeys this simplest request
propels me nowhere
gives me nothing
but lap lapping laps
lap dancing dance
swirl swish hiss

washes sand between my toes
pushes land beneath my feet
washes every curse from
my mouth my pores
spits and pisses me
names me as
my own sole accuser
gives nor gains solace
until I can do nothing
save stand to kneel again
plunge face into the stream

and swallow you swallow
you each and every
swallow you each swallow
and plunge swallow
each and every swallow
plunge swallow each
and swallow you each
swallow plunge and

drink in every
one of you
shallow and slow
counting out the time of eternity
time and times
until all is counted
counted out
counted upon
and forgotten

    “A writer publishes to be read; then hopes the readers are affected by the words, hopes their opinions are changed or strengthened or enlarged, or that readers are pushed to notice something they have not stopped to notice before. All my reporting life, I have thrown small pebbles into a very large pond, and have no way of knowing whether any pebble caused the slightest ripple. I don’t need to worry about that. My responsibility was the effort.” – Martha Gellhorn


our heroine has lost her love but not has not lost her love.
did you hear that? it happened just as i said.
our heroine has lost her light but has not lost her light. did you hear that too? it’s true, just as it happened to you.

what else can i say about her?
her name could be jo or francis or even elizabeth.
there’s really no way of knowing; i just tell the story.
words write themselves, the sun rises and the sun sets.
something is lost, something is found.

we could start this story at the beginning, but that’s not where our heroine resides.


smooth the pleats and fold the linen.
hold the hem tightly and turn down at the seam.
press this here, the collar.
push back the errant hair. turn, stand and hold. the pose.

don’t forget to smile. you’re such a pretty girl when you smile.

sometimes she feels that all she can see of the world are snapshots of missing pieces and that the greater whole is an image forever lost to her.


a camera is nothing more than a light-proof box equipped with some device for letting in light. in the simplest of cameras, there is only a small pinhole to admit light. a plain flap over this pinhole is opened and closed to control the amount of light that enters the interior of the camera.


>click< she enters this place, our heroine, and places just one tear in just one special place. tears are wetter than other waters. tears soak right through darkness. tears are the universal solvent. where once there was stone, now there is sand. tears wore down the pyramids. >click< where once she caught light now she tries to remember how to forget. You’re probably hoping that she’ll learn to forgive as well, but it’s really to early in this story to tell. >click< did she ever, for just one soiled second, ever regret that thing that passed her by, leaving her where she was? was she supposed to go further? was she supposed to suffer just a little more? >click< does pleasure always come with a penance? >click< a flower is such a perfect thing. it grows and grows without knowing what it will become. it dies away never knowing how beautiful it once was. what could be more wonderful? >click< all things are temporary, all things are transient. every beam of light eventually bounces and scatters. >click< sometimes two things grow together. they share the same soil. waters freely find them both. nothing separates them. nothing binds them. >click< two trees are growing in the yard, so close together that you might think they grew from the same roots. one is a maple, the other an elm. she never looked closely at the trees until >click< the day before the day before yesterday >click< when she looked up high. the two trees could not share the air; canopies rub away canopies until just one clear inch of one clear space separates a leaf of one shape from a leaf of another. >click< 4 a heart is nothing more than a love-proof box equipped with some device for letting in love. in the simplest hearts, there is only a small pinhole to admit love. a plain flap over this pinhole is opened and closed to control the amount of love that enters the heart. 5.6 the petals love the light as the light loves the petals. didn’t you ever notice this? it’s true, it’s true: they catch the light from the sun, make it more beautiful, and throw it back at you. 8 our heroine is in transition. she’s moving from one place to one more place to another one more place. she’s not moving at all. she’s afraid that leaving love might mean leaving love behind. 11 >click< take this light-proof box, with all has held. are you the one to give it away again? >click< when she caught light, and when she kept it, she might have thought that she could keep it forever. >click< when the light is gone, only the images remain. will her pictures cast their own light upon the world? there’s no way of knowing. >click< forever is both longer and shorter than it seems. >click< 16 our heroine is struggling to cast light, throw light, loose light upon the world. so, perhaps, there is hope for her yet. 22 >click< she takes up the box. It is not so much heavy as awkward. she squints, sets the aperture and shutter speed. the cloth hood breathes silence against her face. the image is inverted, but not so far away. >click< change poses. point towards the horizon. >click< this is the sun. this is the sun shining. this is the light, so so warm and she’s running towards it. tears do nothing more than evaporate, sublimate. there isn’t even steam. the light won’t allow it. >click< redemption comes less like a lover and more like a swallow. split wings sing, duck, dance and weave. there’s a second chance at everything that flies. >click< 32 black, red, black. the color of her stocking feet. each step is a step closer to a home of her own. >click< the rest will be her story to tell.

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