Tag Archives: works in progress

late night tea and reflective reading

zine: Smut  ‘Day Dreamer’ issue 4

drink: Afternoon Australian Grey (Ceylon, bergamot, and Aus. lemon myrtle) by Madame Flavour

Wow, today was a very good day. I’m currently working on a commission, and today, I was adamant that I had to get the damn thing done so that I could print it out on paper (don’t judge me!), and finally call it finished. It’s been a work-in-progress for quite some time, and one I’ve agonised over in several drafts. It morphed a lot in those drafts.

Tonight, I deliberately picked up a super-short zine for the daily read, as a result of my brain being mush thanks to editing, Trying to read this zine after watching Thor: The Dark World (is it odd that I find superhero films boring? not counting Black Panther because that was fucking rad, you know it) to wind down still meant a shift back into poet-as-reader mode! And no music – just comforting late-night outdoor ambient noise. Is it weird to hear trains so near but find their sound reassuring?

Tea, time for tea.* It’s also been a while since I did a non-alcoholic post, and today has Melbourne in glorious cool change mode. This Australian take on Earl Grey I’m drinking is so damn fragrant. I’ve had it in my pantry for a while and the scent it leaves lingering is heavenly, and distinctive (the lemon myrtle).

Online hunting has revealed that Smut is a microfiction and poetry zine from Melbourne, and the ‘Day Dreamer’ issue is the latest one. Each contribution is numbered and has a reproduction of what look like vintage photos (of very white people…). My favourite ones were the very amusing one about a dog burning shared memories and recollections with a human onto CDs, and a poem about a sinister dream, blood, and reproduction (which, if you read yesterday’s entry, you’ll know has been on my mind very recently!)

The zine ends with a single word on its last page – ‘dream’ – another topic that’s been preoccupying me lately. I’ve been rewatching The Fall and one of the main characters, Stella Gibson, keeps a dream journal. I used to do something similar when I was on medication that on certain doses, gave me the most vivid, violent or downright ridiculous dreams (though sometimes it’s not the meds, it’s past trauma stuff). It’s funny because as a kid, I never had nightmares (probably because I found it so hard to sleep!). I’ve had a lot as a grown-up.

Venlafaxine in particular on high doses is notorious for night terrors, nightmares (that wake up everyone else in your abode but you), and sleep paralysis. Quetiapine just makes me you dopey as fuck, so the dreams tend to be good-weird and rambling. Zolpidem can give you even weirder dreams: it never gives me nice ones, they’re always regret-laden ones that make me feel sad and lonely upon waking. This is why it’s good to have a cat. My old cat Wolfie, was a fantastic grump and nightmare vanguard, and my cat now Fance is a huggy cat who’ll let me snuggle her like a soft toy (under quilt and all! if she’s not sleeping on my hair!) who’ll sneak out from under my arm when I’m just about to fall asleep again.

Sorry, not a fun note to finish on, despite feeling a really good kind of tired. The Bengal kitty I’m looking after likes me again (she’s been napping as I’ve been working my arse off today), and I’ve got another cup of tea to attend to that may have been left to brew for a wonderful-but-socially-unacceptable time…g’night.

*Nope, tea doesn’t keep me awake. I also find it comforting to have hot drinks before bed. Coffee is the drink that mess up my ability to sleep, upset my tummy, make me shake lots. It clashes a fair bit with my day med unless I’ve eaten shitloads. Boooo.

gigi works their arse off

My post office box has been a source of joy over the last few weeks, due to what kinds of reading material I’ve received, and because this last week, I was musing on how I used to be the person that bought lots of cool zines but didn’t think I’d ever have work appear in them! Two copies of Concrete Queers – the ‘horror’ and ‘milestones’ issues. CQ accepted two poems of mine.

‘Bra’ is a musing on the unfairness of typically straight males wanting women to be fat in certain places (that’s what boobs are! fat!) with some of the Doctor Who ‘Adipose’ race in mind re. being made of fat molecules. Fitting for the ‘horror’ issue, albeit oddly?

For ‘milestones’, I submitted a poem (which I read far too nervously at early Feb Girls on Key event as sacrificial poet) called ‘stationary objects’ about not knowing how to celebrate a major, micro-event – cessation of self-injury. Content warning: it’s an autobiographical poem.

When G mailed out a copy of a perzine entitled ‘OH WELL’, it felt like cheating to choose it as my zine of the week because it’s short but sometimes media that can be consumed fairly quickly leaves a lasting impression. My designated book for Mar 2018 Froth felt the same way, so naturally I’ve taken a photo of two amazing bad-arse Asian women’s creative works for this review post, and am mourning the death of my ‘Cucumber Hippy Berliner’ by 8 Wired Brewing, which tried to break my father’s toe, and spumed froth all over the place. I didn’t even bother trying to drink what was left in the can (yeah, am totally annoyed, but can at least afford to replace it, which makes a nice change!).

In the spirit of the aforementioned short, sharp, fierce, creative ladies, this post is a short one too. I’ve been doing a tad too much lately – nothing major, just a little bit too much out of my comfort zone (good), but the kind that means I need more rest to recover, or to just stay home and write. I totally snuck in another poetry submission – am working on a sequence that I’m super-excited about because it’s personal, but hopefully funny and a tribute to fellow mental illness sufferers that can and do make wry observations about treatment and management in this ol’ Western neoliberal model that probs has Lenin melting further, chortle. He’s supposedly melting. Anyway, go contemplate that.

P.S. Oh! Gigi is not in ref to the lovely Viet-Aus writer Giselle Nguyen, but in reference to this video because my mind is twisted and I was thinking about how my head is still trying to make me feel guilty for not reading enough this week, and joke-chant to myself “Gigi works his ass off!”. I also wanted to acknowledge that my arse’s gender denomination is unknown but I don’t think it minds if I use ‘they’ pronouns <3 I’m so so sorry I keep boring my friends with this video!