down an uneven stretch of stockton boulevard in summer, south of sacramento, i came across a classy broken broad, remarkably postured like a runway girl, walking bubblegum pink stilettos, long tan legs up to daisy dukes, a halter top, don’t stop, the mechanical boyish stroll, dry heat tempered by a bottle blue parasol angled off her skinny shoulder blade, urban electric milkmaid conjuring the ghost, to the tomb of some unknown soldier
The medical tech excused herself to speak with her supervisor. She hid her worry rather well. I was in a gown after an EKG. I had a paperback in hand, from the donated library in the waiting room. This happened almost every time. I was once living at high speeds. Sleepless nights. Racing around to no end. Years ago I exited my madness. Since then life has been something to cherish in slow motion. Few sudden surprises. When I saw her, she looked relieved. I asked her the number. Today my pulse chimes in @ 39.
Over airwaves easy works its way
into the soul as sun
makes the home
and lives complete
our last reflection
My heart was no longer aching, not today. Maybe cause i got down on my knees to pray. Maybe i was just lucky. The truth was somewhere, obfuscated by layers upon layers of typewriter paper. I could catch a glimpse of it now and then, but today i could not tell you, if you asked how i was. i probably would not give you the old routine.
No really, how are you?
Nah, at least i can say that on my behalf. I won’t tell you i am okay. somewhere between 4am and 10am, the smoothest window of my life in a day, something goes awfully wrong. And it happens almost every fucking day. Maybe 8 cups of coffee is too much for one person? Maybe two cats is one too many for this girl? Maybe i do not know how to be alone.
i’m not okay.
well, what’s wrong?
Nothing is necessarily wrong. My life is a superfluous cliffhanger waiting to happen. I fall like my novel, into the ebook via freebook via genre fiction via romance via mystery and suspense via suspense is killing me, category. I may be featured #1 of the suspense is killing me bestseller list, at any given moment in time. This is heartfelt#1. by Katya.
In the meanwhile all that is required of us, is to keep that punk attitude @ level main street. Not flaunt it. People get the shit wrong. People don’t understand (punk). They need some help, probably. Punk isn’t insulting, until it’s insulted. Punk isn’t violent unless its backed up against a wall, facing a violent death by censorship and suppression. Parental controls gone control freak, sometimes. Afraid their kids might turn punk on them, no! There’s a local punk show at the bowling alley, don’t go! like skid row. Punk is so far from that, I swear. Punk is not drunk or distancing itself from the life. Punk is life!
Punk is life.
In your face, maybe but not necessarily. Defensively perhaps. But when embraced and believed in, every punk is a mother-loving gift to the culture. A shooting star across the international waters divide. A high def play in your mono nucleosis. A comicon chameleon. A standout from the crowd, with flavor. A vintage black on chalk white heat streets. A friend to the end, when you are lucky enough to have one.
I’m not trying to get anyone to find a rare flower. I just think folks should give a punk a break. Give a punk some bottle water, if you see one. At noon, under electric in bucktown, Chicago. You cannot miss us. The black on white dream. The hairstyle to die for. Rhinestone and leather on a curb. Not even smoking. And there when it counts, in the madness of main street, the punks come down from the wells of the stairs, to help set shit straight.
Ready to exacto knife the badness, the pseudo fake-ass pathetic sadness. So obvious and a sore sight, to be washed off the street. The punk takes it on. The punk got your back, maybe, if you at least try and understand. You won’t be sorry, unless you apologize. Some day you may even come to relate. Because all that is asked is that you just represent. That means be yourself in the most yourself of the sense. In a pure play fingerprint identification of compatriot kinda way. Let your people and mine know that we exist, and support ourselves in the realization that we are not alone, in the difficult reality of our minds.
Every change is painful. Every push gets pushed back hard, and yeah, the pushback itself must get pushed aside in a tai chi kinda way, using the energetics of the situation in a natural way so that the force of the truth is preserved. The flavor of the night is working class punk. Cause it requires great effort with little apparent return. But well worth working toward. And so greatly appreciated by those who have such character as those in common with that uncommon and dramatic and seemingly inappropriate flare, ie, those like us. And we recognize one another, one way or another. We cannot always call upon the courage we have, but we must try, again and again. Every change is painful. And what do we do in the streets is our business. Social media yearns for our currency.
We don’t have to celebrate our connection by way of tattoos or cranium collisions or non-furtive glances, but we will if we want. Cause we have nothing to hide. We will show our tits to it. We will throw a picnic in its honor. We will break out in song for it. We will be our own amplifiers. In the midst of whatever wave of rock and roll, trend, or currency. We are at once the life of the street and the death of the dying. And you can be, too. You can be, too.
But hey, this is all just my half-jaded half-faded, semisweet opinion. Love it or hate it or like it or not. Plus one it or flag it or share it to tumblr. It’s in our best pinterest. Manhandle it, juice it, and tear it apart. See how it ticks. Pawn it, for sure. Do what you want, and just do it, for real. Drop it like a bad habit and archive it now. Or ask yourself why, Katya? and who? when or how? Whatever you do, just do it, please do. So do it, please do. And thank you, sincerely, thank you. Thank you.
-Katya 08/13 – http://www.katyamills.com
The mouth has been watering for some time for a little taste of the really real! Far from the office-as-is. Far from the home-land-security-cam. Far from the life-support system. The Business class. The identical non pinstripe suits. The ladies unable to wear open-toed shoes. Life which is not a beach, even when you live directly on a beach. The gentleman frowned upon for windsor knotting their ties. This isn’t England. We don’t have time for that shit. Deducted from your paycheck. The mentality here. The program we must follow or else. Leave your dreams at home. Put your unpublished novels in the shredder. There’s no glory in your personal story of desecrated ennui. You owe yourself and your country some restitution, for all that rest. Bipolar? Autistic? Schizoaffective? Come one, come all! People wait in line for a diagnosis, just to get away. Fuck the stigma. Be the illness. Covet the experience no more. Self-actualized mental illnesses. You wanna work it like that? Stranger things are happening, so get in line. Start somewhere. Let a county physician try and know you better than you know yourself. Cognitive behave yourself badly. Be a kid again, or role reverse your kids into parenting you. This is the quiet desperation of those who have spent the better part of their wonderful miserable lives within cubicles.
Heroes. That’s what we ought to start calling ourselves. Those of us who have sacrificed our sanity, to join the really real. Because heroes are the ones who wanna wake up, sunshine, and want you to wake up, too. No envy, no coveting nothing. No needing of what can be ordinarily supplied, to get them going with their bad selves and into the world that way, all human and scarred and shit, all making mistakes and so forth, all in the luxury of the poor, dishevelled, diy, really kinda real and sensitive and depressed and anxious and emotional and socially awkward or not but creative in a way of living or working all day at some best effort cause with a heart and some passion or compassion otherwise sold at such a great discount and cost on some chopshop butcher block of supposedly trickled down economics. But instead owned and held dearly though appearing laissez-faire or loose or otherwise inaccurately judged, when all it is really, is worn out from trying. Worn out from giving. Worn out from being other than.
We are the untold heroes and we are real. We don’t need to dream, but we do anyway. We might be found cracking nuts in some blue diamond almond factory down the street in the day. Or throwing paint chips at some glue-dipped armchair and passing it off for high art at some oakland first friday telegraph avenue meet bourbon street doused in whiskeytown rotgut penniless parade in the evening. All the drunken prairie dogs come up off their wooden skateboards to see. It looks like some lost vision. But it’s not lost, not really. Just looks that way. Don’t be fooled. And sure, the pickpocketers will be among them. High art, my ass! will be the first thought crosses your mind. sometimes. Bottle bands and road flares lit up for applause. Kids hooked on ropes, bouncing off buildings. Calling it dance? There’s solid proof of wasted time and effort squeezing dreams dry. But we don’t let them stop us. Because this is heroics, 101. Acceptance. Insanity. Serenity. Insanity.
Can we continue? Not if we have to ask, no. This is the whole of it, to press on and on doing what you believe in most, then going to sleep, waking up, and doing it some more. You won’t always be happy, you will experience alot of pain and ridicule. But you grind up and juice some more caffeinated heroics, what with yourself and what you offer, and you offer your lifestyle, up to the world, and the young ones see you and wanna be you, because when they meet eyes and meet hearts with you, the mind falls away and the age and the physical and mental pain no longer affects us. We become made in the shade and bonded to one another. All artisans and artists, sisters and brothers. And we get beat up and beat down, and life throws us shit. But we somehow manage to just handle it. We work ourselves up to something good, something greater than great. I think we get there and feel it, then our bodies and minds let up and relax so nice. So natural from living this way. Then we can laugh our souls out right onto our tables, out of our windows and doors on the street. The light and the laughter. Replenished. Replete. Through and through, and another day approaches us and we take it, no fear. Because starvation cannot locate itself in something so dear. Its our twenty thirteen heroics gonna get us out of any bind. We are our national treasure, no doubt. keep our heroics in our attitude, share our talent like its gratitude. save the usa. this way.
No, don’t be scared. Just pay attention, brush your hair out your eyes. Sit up straight. This is the haircut we have been waiting to get you, I mean, the cut you wanted. Listen to your heartbeat for a minute… see? Just talkin’ about it turns us on. Everything changes. You are not who you thought you were. You have been touched! You can’t tell? That’s just because you’re still waking up. Come on, we can urge it on, ourselves! Purchase that fresh electroshock device on tv. DIY brain fry. Sanctioned by many, legal in a half dozen states, yours included! Just send that self-addressed, self-licked envelope to the Pharmaceutical Brain, Newark, New Jersey. If you postmarked it yesterday, we will send you a bunch more. Paid On Delivery. That’s if the FDA doesn’t intercept it, on its way from our factory on Better Buy Island, never heard of it? A landfill we filled off the west coast of Mexico. Not anywhere near the other one, Narco Domingo.
Wait, if your’e a superuser you can skip all that nonsense! Download the mobile app on your rooted phone. Make sure you pay some dude on craigslist a couple of bucks to root it. Or your favorite tech-savvy son or daughter, of a friend of a friend. Or anyone on a subway under 40 can do it. Probably before you reach your stop. Go ahead! You can super-use someone. It’s not against the law! They might even decide not to bitchslap you with their skateboard. Kids these days. So likable. So unlovable. Figures. Their mentors were people like me, genXers. We taught them well. Everything they haven’t learned from that show I(Almost) got away with it. Props to the discovery channel and subterranean skies. Thanks to the exorbitant cost society pays, to distribute unprofitable PR department lies.
Anyway, about that haircut, the perm. The DIY brain fry, I mean. You just have to agree to the terms. You don’t have to read them, silly. Touch your touchscreen. Swype the bitch. Come on, now, let what’s left of your imagination run wild. Anything goes! Twinkies and Michael Jordan just came out of retirement. Well, Twinkies did. MJ must be next. They didn’t go nowhere. Just waited for folks to miss them enough. Peek-a-boo! We missed you. Okay okay! Yes, I will do it, stop begging. I shouldn’t have told you my age, I suppose. Just be aware, I have boundaries these days. Don’t think I will troubleshoot right out of my clothes. Story of my life. But I have started a new chapter. Okay, now listen, take your android and bump mine, just do what I say. Otherwise this download’s gonna take you all day. Hey, step back! I don’t need to smell your breath. Just the phones will touch, that’s as close as we’ll get… and Boom! FEEL IT?!? the shock? Works off the same principle as static electricity, I suppose. I’m not a scientist, exactly, not at all. I met a few of them, though, in Evanston sub-basement tech halls.
So now you got you’re app on this icon on your homescreen. 4 whenever you cannot see straight. Hair in your eyes, resentments and lies. Commuting home, next to thighs, legs and thighs. Google it, if you want, there’s no user manual. All i know is this beats your average triple shot machiatto. Here take this gravity brush. Your hair is standing up. Won’t do for the interview. And welcome, sweetie, welcome to the clear full of light. You heard me. I can be trusted. Pro Bono. All right? The clear full of light. Three i-sheets to the wind? Just touch your pretty icon, and then think of me, or someone sweet. Your i-sheets will be reconciled. Virtually, in a moment. Better than a half-litre dry gin, to dissipate a heavy London fog.
I know it seems like some kind of fancy new perversion of reality. But reality and virtual, makes some sweet virtuality. To be driven. To tears. Motivated. No fears. Insane, but not crazy. What we would pay for such a fresh way of being? And yet, I hasten to say – we give it all away! The only thing to do. The only way to be. No impediment. Not anymore. Not like you. Not like me. About time we insourced our own change wrecking crew. Refashioned our images. Pulled out the memory foam and replace it with goose down. Airbrushed our waterlogged decaying fuckin’ attitudes, man. Photoshopped for body parts, hearts, minds, and soul. Took the noise out. No more or less deviation than extreme. Left the ranks of the thundrous wonderbread, of regimented, swing shift disciples. For the graveyard shift.
A federated gang of the driven insane! The formerly motivated, headhunted, cubicled, well paid soldiers of fortune. The Dr Whos-Who of timestamp travel efficiency. Clocking in and out the central artery. Before and after a series of bypass surgeries. Endless summer construction. Parking our asses irreverently, in the very middle of the street. Former pretenders, talking heads, Wall Street cutouts and stitched material. Whatever. Today we don’t think first. We take our shots through farmers market produce. Filtered water, front and back. No hangover necessary. Please and thank you very much. Long the long stretch of endless paper pushing. Short the short life of rigorous dreaming.
Katya Mills 07/13 katyamills.com
All my world had puffed up like a blowfish around me, then blew a massive hole in the ocean. Like those bastards, BP. I came out like Jonah from the belly of the whale. I had found those goddamn roadflares from my truck. The ones I never had when I needed them, stranded with my hazards on halfway down an exit ramp off the great highway. Well, I took advantage of my luck. The moment the clouds gave way to the sky. I struck a match off the heel of my boot, and lit those mothers. Without hesitation. That’s when the whole thing blew wide open. Pretty close to the time the world was supposed to end, again. The impact left ink trails falling all around you and me. Poisoning my ecosystem and yours, too, for a little while. Until the great ocean diluted and detoxified, and cleaned up my mess. So life could go on again, uninterrupted. I’m sorry. I can tell you I am sorry today and I mean it. I thought about it for a long while. Days upon days, actually. There was hardly nothing to do. I had taken my usefulness out of me. Fell asleep on the couch in the dead heat of the day. My kittens stretched out wishing their fur away. The television was on. The television was off. My hold on reality was tenuous. I lost a cat out there. Just like I lost one a decade earlier. I lost alot more, backsliding and sliding. Everything I tried to communicate seemed to come out all encrypted. The more I plugged in passwords and master passwords, the less safe I felt. Probably no one but my ex-boyfriend really truly wanted me dead. But I guarded what was left of me, with all that I could. The nightmares cascaded, if I fell asleep in the silence. Only the ceiling fan spinning far above us. The Tibetan bell I hung off the light fixture was ringing ever so softly beside a broken ankle bracelet I hung beside it. When I could breathe again. When I could read again. When I could look you in the eyes again. That’s when I noticed. When I no longer wanted light, but got lit anyway. I picked up the kittens and kissed them many times. Their bodies hung limp from the palms of my hands. They trusted me so well, they could drip off my arms and melt into the air. My heart melted inside me, over this. The trust, I mean. What a fucking gift. I carried them and myself down the hall to the bedroom. Many times, every day. My eyes half burned out from so many moons and full suns. I can feel my age. The surface temperature of my skin seems to have elevated, substantially. My head aches, and my belly grows. The infertility is juxtaposed. My imagination was seen as a dove by a merchant marine long out at sea. Coming home. My spirit is the delta. The heat of the day seems to linger all night there. My kittens cannot stand to drape over me for too long. They want to. But my body, their fur, well, it’s all much too warm. All my world had puffed up, you see, an inflammation of my soul. And this wasn’t gonna let up so easy this time. Not this time. I had done alot of damage, now. I had painted over the woodwork. Restoration was a bitch. All those relationships I chose, over the relationship I most needed. Let me tell you, it is good to live alone. I hope to stretch time out into solitude. With a steady stream of social media from which to drink. With a world outside my windows waiting for me, when I cannot think. I lost alot by losing myself all the time like that. This was okay, to be worn out and all. I could remember the past, I could tell you the truth some day. But the conscious bold type is screaming grade A psychotic. Still fresh. I think it only right to be humble and patient, not slough the old skin any faster than it wants to. Not so much, but maybe a little at a time. Maybe a little like now. I am not afraid, but rather listening to my truth all alone like I should. And it’s telling me things. Important things. Nuances. Sometimes painful like hell, sometimes touching me so deep. I am so sensitive. I hurt alot. I suffer, but not always in silence anymore. I cry alot, but without shedding tears. A lot less drama. The explosion was necessary. A spiritual emergency. The difference now is the break. Allowing things to shift a little. So I can safely think. So the ecosystem can take a little ink. So I can go out and buy my rice and pasta and fry up my corn tortillas in olive oil, while the green beans are roasting, Indonesian Sumatra. My life is a blessing. Any way that it goes. My choices fall in succession, in rows after rows . The holy temple of my spirit, was always with me and protected. This was my saving grace. She almost got ground out with my Newports, under my heels. I often tried to extinguish her. But I have so much to offer, like they say. I could open a fucking restaurant and offer all day. Anyway. The moon, she is waxing, and the darkness fills around her. I can see it, feel it, know it, be it. The substance, the system, the whole damn thing rides on spoke balanced wheels. I roll them twelve miles, as I get to know myself again. I roll those wheels and the flame delivers like magic, between my forefinger and thumb. My sweet kittens, four brown eyes, two on either side, watch in wonder. In wonder. My verse drops my spirit, like thunder. Like thunder.
Katya Mills, 07/13 @ katyamills.com
You would worry when I started talkin’ about culture. I would be sad, when you were tellin’ me about the future. We would worry , at the bottom of some grave just above sea level, just outside New Orleans. At the top of some skyscraper, in Chicago. Short days getting shorter, as winter came on. Worries becoming more defined, less complicated as time went on. Less akin to fear. More real. And I could still talk to you and you, me, but neither of us could talk to anybody else. Sometimes. Lots of unintentional broken promises in the world. But why? Was it something about all the air traffic competing for attention, packets and waves? Digital signals. Analog overtones. Low def signals. High def undertones?
Anyway, I didn’t expect to be put on trial in Judge So-and-So’s court, either. Who plans out their court appearances, precisely, like bottle-ship builders? So why were we there? Public scrutiny over our could give a damn about our in-laws presentation? To be backhanded for being attracted like mothra to roman candle, to our favorite chosen outlaws? For our multiple citations for by-law window breakage of some corporate glass house? Ya. I guess we’re gonna get black for our wool designation. I never asked to be anything. An icon. A nobody. A sentimentalist. A freak. A mentor. A bleeding heart. An outlaw. A witness. I never asked to be an witness. Did you? I just was one.
I never wanted to dig up dirt on anyone. You never wanted to unearth the once savory bones of goodwill gone bad in an microcosmic corner of a lemon-mustard seed culture, sitting between continents like a refrozen sorbet on dragon roll rotation. But when called, one must avoid perjury. We have a strong defense at the ready. Your honor, please, let me call the most dysfunctional family in the greater regional area, to the stand. Ya, they can all fit in the witness box. They speak in unison. No questions, your honor. Just let them knock around up there for a minute. Their presence alone tells volumes. We rest our case.
We are certainly not guilty of crimes against humanity, ourselves included. It’s not my fault my dna bleeds german. Objection! It wasn’t your preoccupation to study the figures on automaton optimization protocol. I was born in the seventies, man! In the usa. My job was to be free to be me! Not some blueprint come to life on any sale of the century showcase! You were not conceived c-section after a long night of difficult breakbeat breathing, just to end up hanging on some arm or olive branch, for an hour every week! Were you? I was not born an accoutrement! To help sell fine sports cars, toys of the nouveau riche! No! We’re not going at a discount in a dollar store anymore, to someone who looks the part. A good study for consumption! I am no notch in the belt or raggedy rag in the hair, anymore. Trying so hard to protect them from some sun.
We must have early stage alzheimers, you and me and them. Its those iron pots. We gotta get rid of those iron pots…the studies have shown. How many times have we told us? This is where the real crime occurred. In the kitchen. Heavy metal. Its no good for our soft shell brain cells. Shit! Have we all been frying our eggs in it, again? Goodness gracious! Almost forgot to admit that into evidence. Who signed off on iron, in the first place? Was a backroom deal, I bet. Steel got edged out by some caucasian’s half-baked sales pitch, on some back-nine golf game. Before aluminum and Tiger Woods.
That’s how it must have gone down. We may not remember when, exactly, but we were brainwashed by the nine iron lobby. That should shut the door on the case. Now who gets life served up behind steel bars? Whose gonna iron this out? For driving me and you (insane)?
Why? Because we work better, this way.
Katya Mills 07/13 @ katyamills.com