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Tuesday, October 7th, 2008
3:08 pm - Hello from the land of the Golden Bears
Old story. The journal has been neglected and now, after many many months of no words
something just can't be denied anymore. Not writing in a long time is kind of like not calling
one of your best friends in a long time, only the friend is yourself; it's hard to know where to
begin. It feels awkward at first. The only writing I've done for over a year has been for Berkeley.

A lot has happened in this past year.
My sister Susan had a baby: Sofia. She is perfect and beautiful and so new it's my heart aches
when I look at her.

I got a letter last semester from a woman named Cynthia Montano claiming that she was
my half sister.
The funniest thing about this is that from the moment I knew I had a half sister,
back when I was about ten, I wanted JUST this to happen. I would stay up nights with Susan sitting
on her bed in the dark with only the glow of the streetlights humming around our faces, just dreaming
about what she looked like. What her name was. Wondering if her hair was long and her toenails
were painted red. How old was she? Maybe she had kids by now... Mexican girls start early.
My father never dropped a single mouthful about her. We hated him.

Then in an instant, she was in front of me. Her typos and her picture telling me that she had
been trying to find us for a long time. But all I felt was sorry. I was sorry she chose that day to send
me a letter. I was sorry she waited until my parents were so old -finally forgetting about most of their
troubles in a mutual calm after realizing they needed to be together.
Now she was telling a part of the story that changed everything.
I couldn't help but hate her.

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Wednesday, November 7th, 2007
11:30 am - Higher and Higher
trumpetplayer

i am getting NO work done, america.
that's right. i got to berkeley after years of work and doubt, and now that i'm here i can't get
myself to put in much effort. all i do is think about not being here.

looking over the entries i wrote in my little journal at the time i was first dating max, they are
some of the most cryptic shit i've ever seen. it's almost as if i didn't wanna cheapen my feelings
with words.

i'd just end up saying things like "i don't wanna cheapen my feelings with words."

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Friday, October 26th, 2007
3:11 am - Flashback Friday: The poem that made me care who wrote it.
I remember when reading was so simple. You like it? Good. You don't like it? Too bad.
Now it's about careers.




The Day I Fucked up God by Luis Alberto Rivas


I was smoking my last Camel
filterless

which is strange because
I hardly smoke

but I was being tough today
taking long gulps off a pint of
good 100-proof whiskey

the sky was full
of luminous orange muck
a title wave of ash approaching
roaring and booming
devouring rich lives and richer
houses and cities and cats and
dogs and cars and old men
and trees and American lawns

substituting huge back-yard
swimming pools
with beautiful ember

the fires were coming from
all directions
from Santa Barbara
from just north of San Diego
from San Bernardino
Simi Valley and Piru

California on fire

and there was nothing
anyone could do
so the fire kept coming

the houses and trees and lives
eventually ran out
and so it decided to torch the sky

first a few clouds burned black
and sizzled
and then large chunks of sky began
falling like soot

then the fire set its eye on the sun
and the sun seemed intimidated
scared and timid

like going up against an enemy
twice your size in mere bark

it never had a chance
the sun crackled and hissed
shimmered
and crumpled up
burning brilliantly
like a tortilla on a stove

and everything smelled better
funnily enough

the fire didn't leave anything
no streets no dogs no cats no sky
no sun no clouds no sidewalks
no cars no houses no trees
nothing
rich or poor

but I was still there
with my cigarette intact

my entire family was dead
my girlfriend was cremated
alive

my mother and father died
hugging each other
a statue of ash
the wind now sweeping them away
gush by gush

my younger brothers died
watching cartoons
content to go out smiling
and oblivious

feeling better than any of us

and the other brother died in jail
on his 50th push up
just the way everyone predicted

but I was still there
with my cigarette intact

and then the fire took
that

I glared at the guilty flame
It saw me and backed off

but my trouble wasn't just with him

my skin began bubbling
and melting
and all my hair
was already gone

I looked up to a skyless sky and
grabbed God
by the neck
he came tumbling down
like a nursery rhyme

he got to his feet and
looked at me
he was shorter than me
by at least two feet

his hairline was receding
he had a severe acne problem
and a harsh overbite and
was cross-eyed and skinny
and he wore thick-framed glasses
that seemed crooked
with white tape holding them
in place
in the middle

he wasn't much

"listen, fucker" I told him
"that was my last cigarette;
you owe me"

"My son, the time has come f..."
and I back-handed him
before he could finish

he got scared and stepped back

"please, please! I'm sorry!"
"enough of that,
just give me a cigarette."

and he did
even lit it up for me
which was pointless because
the fires were still
there

then I started to die
I was the last one

"look, you took my family away
my girl my house my car my money
my job my friends
It wasn't much
but that's all I had"

"My son, the time has come f..."
and then I got him again
this time a quick and hard right
to the jaw

he fell easily and instantly
like a bag of sticks

this time he started to cry
and I saw a yellow puddle
appearing in the crotch of
his white gown

it disgusted me yet I felt pity

"I'm s-s-sorry my s-s-son;
I think I f-f-f-fucked up"

he whimpered
he had a severe stutter too

"on your feet, faggot!" I told him

he got up reluctantly
and I put him down immediately
with one punch

the fires started shrinking and
I saw the sky returning
like a horizontal waterfall
in slow
motion
forming fresh white and pink clouds

and then it started to rain and
trees and flowers grew again and
all the ash turned into silver dollars

but the dead remained dead

and soon enough
I felt my insides failing
my brain slowing down
my fingers falling off
my vision going fast
myself closer to
nothingness

but there was a beating
still
coming from my chest

and for some reason
it brought a smile to my
face

I glanced back at the spot where
I had fucked up God
and he was running away
holding up the sides of his
piss-stained gown
like a little girl

then I collapsed
dead

and the last thing
I saw was him ascending back
into heaven
with a plastic gold halo taped
to a stick coming out
the back of
his gown

the price tag was still on
"$3.99. Kmart."

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3:01 am - 3,000 am and getting nowhere.
having ovaries fucks with your mind.

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Wednesday, September 26th, 2007
8:28 pm - Letter to Unit X, Nidorf Detention Center, Sylmar.
Dear Albert Anthony Sifuentes,


I called to see how you were doing. My mom mentioned you were moving out with your girlfriend, but I thought I would give it a try and maybe your mom would give me your number. Instead, she gave me this address.

I have been thinking about you these first few weeks up here in Berkeley; more than anything I pictured you in your new apartment –in peace, in love, happy.

The last time I saw you it must've seemed like I wrote you off. After you brought that gun into my house, where I slept, where my mother slept, I made up my mind to stop. Stop giving you rides home. Stop lending you money. Stop listening to your excuses for why you didn't change. I thought to myself, 'I tried. Now it's his turn.'

To tell you the truth I went for weeks without even thinking of you. It was like you didn't exist.
But here in the quiet of a place built for contemplation, your face comes back to me.

And now, you're so far away.

Your mom says she doesn't believe you did it. The armed robbery maybe, but the other charge... "a mother knows," she said. The tone in her voice was so heartbreaking she almost convinced me.


I promised her I would pray for you, and I will. Although I don't think I believe in God, I will.



Sara Monique Sifuentes.

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Tuesday, September 11th, 2007
5:34 pm - I'm so hungry.
Sunset and Alvarado

This is my first post in a long, long time.
I stopped writing because a certain someone told me one too many times that "even [I am] better than some dipshits that got into UCLA." As nice a compliment as this is, I felt it would be best to give it a rest.
But today I have something to say, and I don't care if I'm not as good as Nabokov or Rivas.

As Professor Bishop was pointing out references to Debussy and subtextual clues about hidden identities in Pale Fire today, I began to think about home.

There are three places where I have slept. One place is here in Berkeley. This ten bedroom, former rest home full of twenty-something students and working people. I have all my clothes and books and a huge full size bed... I still don't know how to handle all the leg room. The second place is Huntington Park. My little purple room in the back of the house next to a storage room. I slept on an uncomfortable, green guest couch. There was never any privacy, or peace. But my mother was there.

The third place is not too far from that intersection pictured above. Max's room is in the basement of his parent's house, and his tiny bed just barely fits the two of us... and it's a tight fit. This past weekend I was there and I felt good.


As of now, home isn't quite clear for me, and that's ok. I still have some time.

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Thursday, March 8th, 2007
8:00 pm - Thoughts in the parking lot.
"How many times have you been shot at?"
"Just once."


I used to haul that memory around like a trophy, counting and
recounting my ghetto merit points. Now I feel this tinge of regret...
more than that... humility. How much time did i waste being proud
of growing up like I did?
Driving through my streets lately, I see more and more walls covered
by scribbled cries of war: calling cards of a million squandered minds.
Back when I was walking among them, lucky to share the same side-
walk, I would've looked at those walls and smiled. How many times I
smiled when what I really wanted to do was run up to the wall and
embrace it. Hold my chest to the spray paint and kiss the names of
every lost boy. Open my mouth and let the juice of their pain mingle
with my own.

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Wednesday, March 7th, 2007
7:05 pm - Book Second. School time continued.
Ah! is there one who ever has been young,
And needs a monitory voice to tame
The pride of virtue, and of intellect?
And is there one, the wisest of the best
Of all mankind, who does not sometimes wish
For things which cannot be, who would not give,
If so he might, to duty and to truth
The eagerness of infantine desire?

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Tuesday, March 6th, 2007
10:55 pm - 1:30pm-PCC library. Procrastinating from Wordsworth.
Full mind. Full heart. Full eyes.
I think I need to cry, just to let some of this full feeling out. But I'm not sad.
What to cry about?
Leaving my mother all alone in that madhouse, a perpetual horrific message
on my answering machine.

Letting my father rot away in his mother-in-law's recliner, every day adding to
the oily stench of stagnation that penetrates the living room.

Allowing my sister to destroy everything around her(including my parents), until
her world is empty and quiet; at which point she'll wish for nothing but noise to
drown the loud crashing of her thoughts.

Forgetting about Albert Sifuentes the 3rd, who is every moment sinking and blurring
into the image of his father; trying to ignore the fact that he's still in there somewhere,
underneath the mass of numbed and drunken flesh.

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Tuesday, February 13th, 2007
10:52 am - Haste Valér
The future is coming -I see it.

Someone once told me that no matter what happens, she'd rather be happy.
At the time, I paid little attention. What fuckin good is happiness? What value
is there in smiling?

I didn't realize that she was talking about this peaceful thing, this sort of quiet
ground to always be planted in, and not that artificial laughter that only gets
louder as the pain inside you gets stronger.

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Wednesday, January 10th, 2007
6:10 pm - And everybody on the avenue I know...
My sister is finally pregnant. All my aunts are relieved. My mom is going
crazy telling her what to eat and how much. Nursery colors, crib styles,
and futures are being picked out.
I don't know where I'll be by the time it's born.

Everyone has a suggestion.

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Wednesday, December 6th, 2006
11:06 pm - lucky stars in your eyes

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Tuesday, December 5th, 2006
2:00 am - I haven't posted in four billion years...
not that I have anything important to say. I'm just procrastinating from
writing my essay on Paradise Lost.

I submitted my UC applications. I doubt I'll get into any of em.
As I was punching in my credit card information to pay for the application
fees, I realized that if I don't get in there I might not go to college at all.
Where else would I go? Fuckin Radcliffe? There's no money for private
school and my grades aren't good enough for scholarships. I'll be paying
off fashion school until I'm middle aged.

This is it. I'm taking bets on my future starting now.

There's always Wal-Mart.

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Monday, September 4th, 2006
9:39 pm - Dilúvio 2006
School started and I'm trying.
I don't know how much longer I can live here without becoming one of them.

Gotta fucking work.

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Friday, August 25th, 2006
10:58 pm - I'm clean
Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

My nephew knocked on my door tonight.
Even though I recognized his knock, and knew it was his silence when I asked
who it was, the moment my eyes rested upon his face I thought I was hallucinating.
Nine months: enough time to create life, but the whole time I felt like he was dead.

He's sixteen and towers over me; his bulk a product of six months of lifting
weights in juvenile incarceration.

"Any tattoos?" I asked as a joke.
"Just on my hand, if you can find it."

Tres puntos on the inside of his lefthand middle finger.

I stood outside with him and his friend Smirks. They talked about teenage cholo shit
and I just listened and answered questions, mostly about his dad. Somebody came to
pick them up and I hugged him tight before he got in the car.

With no expression on his face he said, "Orale" and left.

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8:05 pm - Get back to where you once belonged
Today was my last day of work. I cried while he was asleep in his crib.

Melinda gave me pictures of me holding the baby with my hair all chubaka-ish.
It would'nt have been so bad if they weren't FRAMED.



In response to northrnskeyz's tag:

1. Get Back- Beatles
2. To Zion- Lauryn Hill
3. Sexy Boy- Air
4. Dangerous Type- Cars
5. Request Line- Zhane
6. Don't Understand- Masta Ace
7. Ocean- Wiskey Biscuit

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Tuesday, August 8th, 2006
10:53 pm - I'd rather my voice drown in noise than in silence.
Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting


Not much sleep this weekend. We arrived in Henderson, Nevada at around 3am
Saturday morning. Vivien wanted to talk about life. Her current definition of life
being whether or not she should stay in a relationship with Edgar. I’ve learned not
to give love advice anymore; no one takes it.

I’ve also learned that when someone uses the words “intellectual” and “book smarts”
every forty seconds they sound stupid as fuck.

Saturday night we went over Edgar’s to sleep.
I wasn’t in bed for more than five minutes when Edgar’s friend Psycho walks in the
room, pretending not to know I was in there. He asked if he could sleep on the floor
and I was tired so I said yes.

“So where you from?”
“You gotta boyfriend?”
“What perfume are you wearing?”

Every time I drifted off, I heard the low, heavy breath of his voice. All I could think was
how the hell I ended up in Of Mice and Men… and why was I the one who had to put
up with Lennie?

My eyes were like two freshly peeled tomatoes so I grabbed a blanket and pillow and
went to sleep on the living room tile. Three minutes later, he went to the bathroom
and I took the opportunity to go back to bed and lock the door.



I hit a Chinese man’s car on Washington Boulevard while being distracted by a white
woman on the train who looked down at the black couple to my left like she couldn’t
believe their audacity for driving next to her.

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Sunday, July 30th, 2006
3:36 pm - Get ready to lynch
To the "I owe you" guy...

When I gave you the $.037 cents (spare change) you were begging for
outside of the supermarket, I really didn't expect anything in return...


You don't owe me a thing...

Go on and buy that nasty malt liquor...

It's okay, I don't need to see your unit...

Consider the $.37 my part of the reparation for the whole "slavery thing"...

Run along now... Jasper's saving you a spot and a piece of cardboard
behind the market... And he scored on someone dumping out their
ashtray full of half smoked butts...

Have a nice nice night nimrod...

-anonymous



In rush hour traffic on Washington and San Pedro, a man walks from the intersection
down the long line of cars waiting at the light. He has a paper cup in one hand and lifts
his shirt with the other. Near his belly button is a red flesh growth that looks something
like the tip of a dog's dick in heat. As he passes by, every car moves an inch or two
forward -afraid he might reach in the window. Not once have I seen anyone even try to
throw pennies in his face.


Everyone walks around hiding all the fucked up shit there is inside; you display it to the world.
I'm sorry I'm one of them.

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Thursday, July 27th, 2006
10:07 pm - The sweetest thing I've ever known
Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

- like your precious baby dark skin tone.

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Thursday, June 22nd, 2006
7:19 pm - how does one suck a fuck?
Ok, so the Mac is dead. At least all of its memories are. So if it does come back it won't remember me. The people at Fry's completely ruined my belief that they are the ultimate nerd power of the universe. Stupid fucks.

I have a job in Korea town as a nanny. I take walks every day to Larchmont Village where everyone looks ready for the paparazzi and Johnny Depp occasionally occurs outside Peet's coffee. No one assumes the baby in the stroller is mine because all the brown people around there are maids and janitors and valets and ignorantborderjumpinspics who should just stay on the other side of the wall.

Have you seen the Border Patrol commercials lately?
Man.

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