Flashing back haaaaaard ♥  ♥  ♥  ♥  ♥


“I’ve been off drugs and booze since I almost killed myself on speed two weeks ago. But my gratitude for being alive can’t last for ever.”

One of my first literary / theatrical crushes . . . .



I’ve gone belly-up for my prodigal
and his knock-kneed swagger of hit-or-miss.
It suits him, the fall from grace.
Wafer-thin, minty-fresh, proto-punk.
Everything wasted becomes the boy,
crowd-sourced collar of hickeys blooming,
the headless glamour of youth,
all that I’d given up for lost.
My prodigal returns to me
without his keys, his coat, his shoes,
tapping his familiar tattoo at my door
as if I still had everything to give—
a kingdom, a cigarette, a fatted calf—
and all he had to do was ask.


Some mothers fear the worst. They still believe
in the fiction of control. Poor kittens.
Poor mittens. Poor sacrificial cotton socks.
I seem to be the bearer of bad news;
blue-eyed princeling, anime-bright,
articulated idol, towhead intactus.
A smile so sly you’ll forget your lunch.
That smug reflex of maternal pride.
Been there, done that. Took the fall
from the broken bough, cradle and all.
Almost a year since I almost lost him.
Lost the plot. Lost my head. Lost the habit
of believing in a time when “the worst”
was still good enough.


I know I’m lucky to be forgiven,
pretending to release him.
This flattening fear is just my ticket,
punched, pocketed, and then misplaced,
along with his milk teeth; his sterling
silver rattle, shaped like a barbell;
and other treasures I thought I could save.
Daydreams. Relics to prove I was there,
when needing me was all the rage,
before the rage became
the question I couldn’t answer.
False god, with my vicarious pain,
and just a couple of apron strings to offer
between creation and sacrifice.


He’s wandered back into the fold,
trailing clouds of Marlboro Red.
Has anything changed? His chin,
sprouting its slapdash soul patch,
punctuating the air of innocence
on a tear. My wayward lamb,
never met a wolf he didn’t like,
and nothing so tender stays lost
in the night. Not here, in Hollywood.
I don’t know how not to hold on.
I remember us still, on Primrose Hill,
spinning on the roundabout,
how sure I was not to let go too soon,
his small hand, wholly in my grip.

by Mia Sara

watercolour by Kim McCarty


I  ♥  Ojai.


The formidable Jill Abramson has an excellent review of Katy Tur’s just released memoir, Unbelievable: My Front-Row Seat to the Craziest Campaign in American History. My list of must reads this fall just keeps getting better and longer.

“Unbelievable,” Tur’s short and breezy campaign memoir, is the story of how she soldiered on. It is also the familiar tale of how a relatively inexperienced woman is looked down on and underestimated, both by the candidate she covered and by her network superiors. By the end of “Unbelievable” it’s clear how wrong they all were in thinking they could run over “Little Katy” (Trump’s snide name for Tur).

Read the review here.

Read about Katy here.




was with Sonia in the closet
a summer morning her parents
off to work and the neighbor kids
were playing spin the bottle which
Sonia did and it stopped dead at me
so they pushed us into a closet
and there we were in the dark
muffled among the hanging clothes
nervous excited we didn’t know
how to kiss so we just grazed
our lips and clutched each other
before opening the door to our
friends crowding around
as Sonia and I looked down
from our new height as if
we had glimpsed some secret
back there in the dark among
her mother’s dresses her father’s
stiff trousers something
unspeakable in the bodiless clothes
the empty sleeves and pant legs
dangling and brushing against us
ushering us closer together
in the perfume smell of
her mother the cigarette odor
and English Leather of her father
as Sonia and I grasped and swayed
our eyes shut tight as our mouths
in that first blind groping kiss
among the ghostly limbs clutching
and shuddering around us

Joseph Stroud | Of This World, 2009

Juana Olga Barrios | Primitivos, 2017


“From the bottom will the genius come that makes our ability to live with each other possible. I believe that with all my heart.” These are the words of the Pulitzer Prize-winning Dominican-American writer Junot Díaz. His hope is fiercely reality-based, a product of centuries lodged in his body of African-Caribbean suffering, survival, and genius.”

A spectacular listen.

In total agreement.


Another giant falls.


Just started, but already, this much talked about literary debut is the bone chilling book of the season. And I thought last year’s A Little Life was intense….YOWZA.


♥ ♦ ♠  via NYT


The First White President