How I Am

I am in Virginia now, surrounded by fellow writers. The weather is lovely. I am heartbroken for many reasons, but also hopeful for many more. I am creating, creating, creating. I wear red lipstick often & receive compliments which make me blush, though this is not the reason that I wear red lipstick. I carry a notebook around everywhere I go & usually am shoeless. Yesterday I met a cat outside who sat on my bare feet as I wrote a poem about sadness. I read the poem to the cat, & the cat purred, & I felt better. This is how I am.

I have been published in many places lately, & I realise I have not shared these things with you as I try to do. So here they are, all at once:

My poem "Love in Goddess-Speak", centred around Indian culture & girls who love girls, was published in Some Safer Place, an anthology tied to adolescent intersectional narratives.

"Kumkum Powder", about Diwali & hope, was published in The Life of Colour Project, a gorgeous new journal dedicated to sharing pieces that promote warm experiences in women of colour.

"Sacrifice Speaks", about cat-calling & delicacy & fury, was published in The Mira Project, which aims to promote the voices of marginalised women.

And finally, I was interviewed by Abi Pearson about what I create & why I do it & how to support me.

This is how I am:

I have tried my hand at reading tarot & am loving it more & more. Often I & my friends gather in the evenings so that I may pull futurisms out of cards, & it is wonderful. I received an air plant as a gift; it is small & hopeful. I am going to many thrift shops & marathoning That Song as I do, picking up hoodies, graphic tee shirts, floral dresses alike. I would like to have a cohesive wardrobe, but alas: I am too many girls. I am too many infinities.

I watched this video, & it made me cry, & I waved my roommate over & made her watch it, & she also cried, although she does not label herself a "crier".

I am reading The Future of Lifeby E.O. Wilson. It, too, has made me cry. Mostly in public, where I receive odd looks from passersby & generally embarrass myself. Next on my TBR list is Internecineby Claire Na, & this will also make me cry - there is no doubt about it. (Truthfully, I am sort of tired of crying over gorgeous media, but what is one to do?)

Americans are odd. Lovely, but odd.

Half Mystic's Issue I orders are pouring in. Many writers from camp are interested in buying their copy, & soon we shall be sold out once more. This delights me. (P.S. order yours now.)

We are accepting submissions for Issue II: Saudade at the moment, & exciting partnerships with gorgeous organisations & artists are brewing. I already cannot wait for you to read this issue. I thought that allegro was our pinnacle, but clearly I am wrong.

I performed at a small poetry open mic a few days ago, & it was a delight. I do not have the video yet, but as soon as I am able to access it I shall share it with the love letter list. It will be wonderful.

A good thing: "When I ask myself why I collect books, I think of a review [Walter] Benjamin published in 1930 in which he imagines the writer as 'a ragpicker, at daybreak, picking up rags of speech and verbal scraps with his stick and tossing them, grumbling and growling, a little drunk, into his cart.' It is always daybreak somewhere along my shelves.”

It is always daybreak. It is always daybreak. It is always daybreak.

This is something my obsessive-compulsive, perfectionistic self must know. I wrote it down on a post-it note & now it lingers on my shelves, a kind of hope, a remembering.

Here is a small playlist I made, containing songs I adore at the moment. There is lots of John Mayer & Vance Joy & Sam Smith &John Legend, because that is how I roll. (If you enjoy my taste in music, here is another gift for you.)

I have not picked up any clients for a long while - design or writing or business or otherwise - but I have fallen into working with one of my dear friends here to design & build her new business. We create hard & laugh often. It is a good, soft thing. And I am excited to see what we make together. Perhaps I may begin working with more clients again. (A question: if I did, would you be interested in working with me to write things for you or edit your own work? Please email me if so.)

Often I am sad here, but also often I am happy.

Here is Lemony Snicket's advice on writing a thank you note. This, I think, is why I adore him so. (Related: the Empire State Building's souvenir postcard.)

As with music, it takes a lifetime of practice to be kind to yourself. Make space for that practice, and the harmony will emerge.” I am trying to be kind to myself in the way a treble clef holds the staff close to its enormous curvature, this spiralled heartbeat, an exercise in tender.

I admire minimalism. I try to practise it.

Heaven or This is now at 5000 downloads. There are many gorgeous reviews. I receive emails daily from its readers, & every time I am awed anew. In case you missed it: currently I am answering questions regarding the book on Goodreads, so you may ask whatever your heart desires.

There has been wondrous dialogue happening with my Patreon fireflies. I am sharing much unpublished poetry with them, which is terrifying & beautiful. If you have the means, please consider showing your support.

Two days ago I was in my dorm, & it was dark, & the faerie lights were on, & my roommate, who is a songwriting major, strummed her guitar & sang soft sad songs about her ex. It smelled like peace & fabric softener. She paused & turned to me. "Am I keeping you awake?" she asked. And I said: "Yes, but don't stop." And she did not.

This is how I am.

And you?