Everyone has random quirks right?

Here are some of mine….

I hate taking my vitamins…I have to negotiate/cajole myself into it every morning. My internal dialogue sounds awfully similar to my sister negotiating with her 7 year old.

Honestly– a lot of my inner life is spent negotiating with myself, mostly about food….i.e. “well jessica, if you eat XX, then you have to do XX later. Or if you eat XX now, you can’t eat XX later.” There are so many myriad combinations of this mental discussion with myself, it makes me too tired to even come up with a specific example.

I can go to a donut shop every morning and get only coffee, never buying a donut, i purchase no sweets whatsoever at the grocery store…ever. In that sense I have great willpower. but if someone brings cookies of any kind to the office I will eat at least two, sometimes three. If they are tiny, double that number.

I love watching fitness infomercials. They mesmerize me. Must be all those years as an aerobics instructor and then later covering the home video fitness industry. Although, I do confess I will also watch the Magic Bullet infomercial every time I run across it. Seriously. I think I’ve seen that 1,000 times. I’ve never bought any infomercial product though.

I have lived in West Los Angeles for 6.5 years almost….in the same damn apartment. And still, STILL if I am driving west on the 10 it is a 50/50 crapshoot that I will go the right direction onto the 405 to get home.


Poetic Catharsis

Since Dana and I are epic failures at joint blogging (RIP Brunettes Unleashed), I thought I would kick off this blog I built a while back but never really launched.

I’ve been writing some poetry lately. I also have a new idea for a book that I admit, has been temporarily abandoned due to insecurity but I am trying to get myself in a good habit by at least working on some poetry.

Unfortunately, what’s coming out right now is far too graphic to post. I confess, it’s kind of a habit with me. When I’m staring at a celibate time in my life I tend to write graphically sexual masturbatory poetry. What can I say? I’ve always been a sexual person….writing is a good release when you are lacking, well, release.

Anyway, I am working on a couple of things that aren’t sexual or masturbatory, but the only stuff I actually like so far is coming out really graphic.

I often wonder how real modern poets write. What’s their process? I feel like my most honest poems are always spontaneous and completely unedited. I’m trying hard these days to tackle poetry like I do other writing, with care and thought for construction and editing.

But really, truly, I know I’ve always been something of a stream-of-consciousness writer in all forms. I think I just luck out when things come out right. I used to feel like that all the time when I was a reporter like “Oh that’s not the story I thought I was writing, but it works too.”

Maybe when it comes poetry that spontaneity works out OK as well. For long-form writing I think I need more discipline.  Hence the fact that I am actually slogging through an official book outline for the first time in my life. Wish me luck.

In the meantime and for breaks, I am indulging in short-form.

For inspiration, I have been reading a ton of poetry from my betters. (Trying to avoid Bukowski because he makes me feel inadequate, but I go there for some necessary self-flagellation).

I was reading some Billy Collins the other day and came across this poem below—I just love it. I admit I love anything that touches on death. I feel like so much of what I write has an undercurrent of death, (except for the masturbatory poetry, though I suppose, it also holds its own brand of pathos.)


Everyone has two birthdays
according to the English essayist Charles Lamb,
The day you were born and New Year’s Day—

A droll observation to mull over
as I wait for the tea water to boil in a kitchen
that is being transformed by the morning light
into one of those brilliant rooms of Matisse.

“No one ever regarded the First of January
with indifference,” writes Lamb,
for unlike Groundhog Day or the feast of the

This one marks nothing but the passage of time,
I realized, as I lowered a tin diving bell
of tea leaves into a little body of roiling water.

I admit to regarding my own birthday
as the joyous anniversary of my existence
probably because I was, and remain
to this day in late December, an only child.

And as an only child—
a tea-sipping, toast-nibbling only child
in a colorful room this morning—
I would welcome an extra birthday,
one more opportunity to stop what we are doing
for a moment and reflect on my being here on earth.

And one more might be a small consolation
to us all for having to face a death-day too,
an X in a square
on some kitchen calendar of the future,

the day when each of us is thrown off the train of time
by a burly, heartless conductor
as it roars through the months and years,

party hats, candles, confetti and horoscopes
billowing up in the turbulent storm of its wake.

Anyway, welcome to the new blog. I’ll try to keep on it better than I have in the past.

In the meantime, I’ve posted a bunch of old (nonsexual) poems below. Feel free to critique/comment.

Short Poems (by me)


A house is not a home.
Home is where the heart is.
The heart is not a house.

I confess…
It’s where I live
I’m glad…
mine’s always open for guests
I admit…
Some have come in and trashed the place.


In a word–
The space around
those two letters
Crashes like a wave,
Knocking a girl down,
Mouth full of sand,
Then it crawls away.
But only for a moment.
And it’s back,
To pound the shore,
Wipe away the etching
Break against the girl.
She can walk away.
But still she hears the sound–
The crashing


I wish he would haunt me.
I wouldn’t mind.

It’s OK
Break a few mirrors
Move a chair there and here.

Maybe he would laugh a little
and I could hear it.

It might even be all right
if it were scary sometimes.

A bump in the night
and his laughter.
I don’t think I’d mind.

There is a place
A room
Where shadows dance
In the flickering light
Of a tiny candle
At whose flame
The heart of dreams

Oh God
My head.
I sit up–groping in the dark

Sticky, silent groping
Shifting gently from the velvet mound

There’s something
I reach out–gathering them in bits

Like my pride

Ode to my new bra

Ode to My New Bra

Your cups
So smooth
So gently allowing
My bouncy Bs
To nestle
So soundly.

Your straps
So tight
Not twisted
Or mangled
Or ripped
Or slipping down my arms
And lifeless
Like overcooked linguine.

Oh Sweet 34B
So clean
So bright
So untainted
As yet
With boobie sweat
Or beer spills.

Only once
In our relationship
Will it be this perfect.
The first day
I wear you–
My new bra.

Ode to my boss’ dead cat

Ode to my boss’ dead cat

I found the cat.
Not alive.
Not whole.
There were maggots involved.
I looked away quick,
I won’t tell the kids yet.
Not just yet.

Poor cat.
Poor Carbuncle.
Yeah, I know.
Strange name
For a cat.
Why not just call him
Marx’s parasite?
I don’t know
But he’s gone now.
Well, half-eaten.

What a way to go.
Possum attack.
I’m sure of it.
Saw the baby possum a few days ago.
He must have run into the mommy
Wonder where’s the rest?

I’ll deal with it in the morning
Before the kids get up.
I’ll tell them he ran away
The truth.
But not it all.
Not about the parts,
Not about the maggots.

Smells nice out here.
Ocean air
The grass is damp
The earth is pliant
Oh, shit,
More maggots.

I’ll just dig right here.
Right next to him.
Then scootch him into the hole.
It’s done.
A pat or two.

What’s that?
The rest.
A tail and
Oh God.
No more digging.
No more maggots.

Should I?
It’s just a tail.
And some bits of leg
The fence is low
They’re old.
It’s a big backyard.
They don’t walk around much.
They probably never even come back this far.
By the time they ever do
It’ll be gone
(The maggots you know.)
One more shovel thrust
Got it!
On three……..

Time for breakfast.