New photo shoot with Aña Monique

“It’s your job to get vulnerable. It gets you into the flow and unlocks your subconscious so that you get out of your head and into your heart.
The part of you that is gonna do a good job is the part that you want to most deny.”
John Cusack

Aña asked if I’d be willing to do a vulnerable shoot, and since I’ve gotten to know her—as a friend and an artist—I told her I was in.
Opening up like this in front of a camera—whether on a set or in a studio—takes a lot of trust, and she’s more than earned it.

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Hearse

hearse 1

Dreams I dreamed
Wish I could leave
Far behind
And move beyond
The rusted gates that beckon
(beckon)
Swing and scream
Flailing open
But in between
All you mean
Is all you meant
To me
I see
And so I’ll push reverse
Step in the hearse
And cry myself to sleep.
-ijs

*author’s note: Writing this poem was a weird experience: the words were coming before I even saw the meaning. It took me longer to work out what I’d just put down than it did to write, but the interpretation that took shape for me was beautiful.
I’m sure I’ll revisit this poem at some point and work to flesh it out more, but for the moment, I’ll let it rest.
In peace.

But I Won’t Miss You Today

lonely nature

Order coffee just for one
Sit in the shade
Headphones in
(playing nothing)
But I won’t miss you today.

Run dappled trails
My shadow the only partner
Pacing me silently
But I won’t miss you today.

Ride the train to work
Smirk at that inside joke
Pull out my phone and
Go to text
No one
But I won’t miss you today.

See flowers delivered
(wrong color)
Girls going crazy
Guys hiding and ordering their own
But I won’t miss you today.

Eat lunch on the bench
Where our shoulders touched
(hands brushed)
And we shared glances
Without looking
But I won’t miss you today

Wander your favorite store
Find the perfect gift
(put it back)
(really, it was perfect)
But I won’t miss you today.

Catch that song
We first danced to
(held you)
Electric spinning elegance
(closer)
But I won’t miss you today.

Smell the perfume
(yours)
Drove me wild
Head tucked under my chin
(someone else)
But I won’t miss you today.

Drive the backroads
Solace in vastness
Open spaces between my fingers
On the gearshift
But I won’t miss you today.

Watch the evening star
Leap from the pregnant horizon
Lying on the cooling hood
(we used to keep warm)
But I won’t miss you today.

Embrace sleep’s emptiness
In pristine sheets
I fall
(embracing nothing)
But I won’t miss you today.
-ijs

*Thanks to Jen for the music recommendation I used while I was working out where to go with this piece.