"What next," I ask.
"Go outside and take a photograph of something," the muse tells me.
I take a step out. Take a photo of the first thing I see.
Upstairs, in the space I am living, I'm surrounded by my own garbage.
Josh James' asked me to gather some zines together for his distro and I need the money.
I know that seeing your old work as shit is a sign of personal growth. If you have regrets, if you are embarrassed by the person you were and the things you've done, this means you've learned.
I don't know how artists can continue to stand by their old words.
Last year at the Schnitz I watched Patti Smith perform every song on her album Horses, the exact way it was on an LP. She even pantomimed flipping a record before moving on songs on the B-Side. People had rushed the stage and were standing in the aisle. People were standing in their seats. Clapping their asses off. $60 a ticket for the worst seats. It didn't matter because you could get up and be in the aisle.
Jamie Houghton was there.
Incidentally, her poetry now is in front of me, a hamburger-fold creasing the middle.
It had been buried with other paperwork deemed important but ultimately wasn't relevant enough to stay on the bookcase for years. Everything must be put away at some point.
The poetry is good. I had to track my mind at first to remember who it belonged to. Last we talked she said she hadn't taught in two years. I wonder if she is writing. I wonder if she regrets things she's written.
Making more embarrassing mistakes that will haunt me can be put off tomorrow.
Everything will be put off tomorrow.
Everything has to come out at some point.