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Marginal Beauty

Thursday, April 21, 2005


It's 2am, and I'm driving home after a night spent socializing with friends. The air is crisp, with a sharpness to it that I've only found in the midwest. I've been living at home for a few weeks now, after having moved away for a few years.

Occasionally I'll see another pair of headlights on the road, but not often. It's just me, my car, the open road and the stereo. After a bit, I turn off the stereo and settle back into my seat... I have another 20 miles until I'm home.

You can smell the farmland, the rich earth, and hear the distant rumble of a semi on I-80/90.

You've been questioning yourself, wondering if moving home was the right choice... moving back in with your parents, away from the city life. Turning down the country roads headed for home, the moon comes from behind a cloud. The trees that line the road reach for each other, for the sky and the moon and the clouds. You smile. You can't see this in the city. The moonlight sliding between the branches of the still-bare tree.

This is home. You made the right choice. This is peace. This is the land of laughter and love. Quiet drives in the country.

Just you, the moon, trees and the open road.

Current mood: quiet

Tuesday, February 22, 2005

11:03PM - a short story

joe is a boy i knew i was in love with. although i had never met him, i knew him well from stumbling across a weblog of his many years ago. from commenting to emails to text messages, we had become familiar despite the distance. i spent countless nights looking up directions to his house only to place them in the trash by morning. each week, a neverending supply of crumpled paper littered the floor.

this is the story of how i finally met joe. i drove over 500 miles on impulse alone. i just hopped in the car one night and left. instead of throwing it away, i took the scribbled directions and crammed them in my pocket. after miles and miles of road i arrived. i spotted joe sitting alone on his porch as he had described doing in his weblog most nights. calmly, i parked the car a block away, walked towards the house, and this time approached the face i had gazed at for hours from so far away.

i pretended to be a stranger. he had never seen my picture before. tonight i was nothing but a passerby in the middle of the night. "mind if i join you for a cigarette?"

he paused and looked at his watch. well past three o'clock am. "have a seat" he replied without reluctance.

i looked around at the empty seats. "what happened to all your friends?" as i chose the one next to him.

"they went to sleep a while ago."

i paused, looking for a good way to continue and tried, "well maybe i can be your friend".

was it too forward? he smiled at the challenge. "you?" he asked inquisitively, taking a cigarette lodged behind his ear and effortlessly lighting it.

i smiled. "well once we get to know each other a little better."

"ok, let's go."

we smoked and resmoked cigarettes while talking for hours. it was better than i had imagined. it was as if the universe decided to align our paths perfectly for only a brief moment. we both felt the connection. i hoped it was a taste of the future.

finally i looked out towards the slowly brightening sky. at this time of night i felt like i could ask anything. "what are your dreams?"

he wrinkled his nose and squinted as he thought. it took a while before he could come up with an answer. i couldn't believe he was taking it so seriously. taking a glance askew, i saw him pondering the question at face value as if it was the first time he had truly considered it. i felt that he was trying to come up with a noble answer. seeing his sincerity made me fall in love with him again. the silence was perfect. finally, "a dry brittle leaf. jumping in a pile of them like when i was a kid. you know, it sounds silly but i'd like to do that again someday."

next thing we knew we were side by side shaking the nearest tree trunk in sight. a pile of leaves land lightly over a moonlit pile of snow.

as i see myself impossibly making a leaf angel in the dead of winter, i think of how lucky i am to see a set of miracles in one day.

Saturday, August 14, 2004

10:35PM - Beauty through my eyes

I wrote this a while ago. Forgive me if if it doesn't fit the proper criteria.

So, today, at like 7:30, I wake up to "C'mon Ty, I'm not gonna call you again. We have to go!" I respond with "Alk nyug doif"
Which, by the way, means nothing. It's one of those early morning languages. So I crawled out of bed, changed, and went down stairs. Then, it was off to the doctors office. For a good 'ol fashion physical...fun. But thats not whats important. See, heres the punch line of the entire story and title, as we were driving home I was much more awake then I had been when I left earlier. Now, I began to see. See all the beauty. It's been raining, as you know, and it has apparently, for the moment anyway, ceased. Now, everything glistens. Everything has that feel to it. Like God has given the world another chance. A clean slate. And it was cool out. Something very refreshing. So, as the sun filtered through the trees, and I took breath after exhilarating breath of this crisp, pure, air, as tears came to my eyes ,all I could do, was grin.

Sunday, July 25, 2004

11:45PM - the Crows

It is a foggy morning in San Francisco. I am parking in an urban-depressing reservoir and walk up noticing that I am not thinking, just like I wasn't thinking  when I was a kid. When I was a kid I didn't quesion whether I like my school orfirst class in the morning - I just walked there, physically, breething cold air, looking in front of me, noticing movement of my body.
Almost out of reservoir, I start to see few crows flying over me. I look where they are heading and see a woman feeding the crows. There are no pigeons, no other birds, just about two dozens of big crows around, emerging from milky white fog. I didn't think, I just felt their presence: unthreatening, beautiful, alive...

Tuesday, April 13, 2004

3:34PM - i suggest we learn to love ourselves before its made illegal.

days like this are enthralling and hold the promise of neverending though the eventual relief when they do. if theres one thing ive realized its my deep abiding intrinsic love of people. the way the air between two faces shifts like a summer's heavy heat and the lovely stupor in those basements made of music. theres something about being so awake and knowing this is the time, this is the dark rooms and wailing headlights and the sound of rain on a solitary skylight. knowing that everyone has so many goddamn secrets and quirks waiting to be found and appreciated and all it takes is a transient sidesweep, an expectation that there is something powerful and abrasive hiding in the lace trim, in the inaudible bobs of heads. all of this came to the surface in my quick shower with the windows doors open and music echoing against each wall, flashing the illusion of sunspots.

10:51AM - ironic or stupid?

We spend our lives trying to find someone to spend the rest of our life with, and forget to spend time building a life for ourselves thats even worth sharing.

...even at the age of seventeen.

Tuesday, April 6, 2004

1:18AM - the impossibility of description

I stood in the doorway. And then it struck.

Through the dusty off-white blinds that tried so vainly to hold back the beauty. A thin beam of pure orange essence: sunlight, that pierced cornea and took my breath. I stood there and felt every single sadness fall upon, impacting my heart and mind in such a small expanse of time such that tears brimmed instantly.

I missed love. And laughter. And the uncomplicated things.

Really it was an epiphany.

Current mood: to life, and its intoxication

Sunday, March 28, 2004


It was in the Fall of 2002. At work, there had been a drawing for tickets for a "Medieval Times" show, and I won. For the working university student I was then, free entertainment was more than welcome.

But what I've seen there was more than just entertainment. It was beauty itself, in the form of a knight, well, an actor.

There he was, rough and fair and the same time, a man from the North, riding his white horse. I gazed at his green eyes, his square jaw, and his long blond hair blown back by the cold October wind. The Norse God threw a flower in the crowd, but I didn't catch it. I was litterally falling on my knees, mesmerized. It was not a sight made for human eyes.

Oh, the hurt that it did... I will not tell you all the things that went on, and how my life has changed because of this, because this is not the place to do so. Many people said I was immature to love someone who didn't even know I existed and, when I finally got to talk to him and met him, he did not want me. Most people associate unrequited love with bimbo teenage girls. Well, was Quasimodo's love for Esmeralda immature? And Dante Alighieri, who wrote the Divine Comedy and Inferno for Beatrice, whom he had seen once when he was a child? Was he immature? This was not a little teenager crush. What I felt was even greated than love.

On October 19th 2002, I died, for I have seen an angel.

Rowena Morrill's 'Guardian Angel'

Current mood: nostalgic

Saturday, February 28, 2004


It is late, has to be around four in the morning. We've been lying together on the futon couch for the past two and a half hours or so, but I've moved to sit up because I'm paranoid that some parent would come downstairs and get angry with us (stupid society). It didn't matter much though. I was so drowsy at that point that I'd already fallen over onto your chest twice and fallen asleep there. Each sleep only lasted thirty seconds or so until my leg would jerk violently and I'd be awake. Every time I dreamt of trampolines, I would imagine because we had all been playing on one earlier and also because you had told me days before about the trampoline choreographers in Donnie Darko. The third time I woke up, I told you about my trampoline dreams. Rambled on about trampolines and choreographers and Donnie Darko for what had to be a minute or two before I stopped mid-sentence. I was leaning on your chest slightly, but at that point I sat straight up and looked you in the eyes (something I cannot do with many others).

"I'm sorry. I don't know what I'm talking about. I don't know what I was talking about. I don't know where I was going with that." You smile at me, that calm smile you get when you're talking to me that late. But instead of saying anything, you just brush my hair away from my face and pull me close to you, rubbing my arms and back.

Monday, February 16, 2004

4:35AM - nothing gold can stay

i had just gathered all of these flowers from a tree a couple of nights before and arranged them on this table. when i came back and saw them dying, i felt compelled to do something about it. so i spent the next two days making dozens of flowers out of duct tape and taping them to the branches of this tree. i don't really understand why i did it. i never brought anyone to the tree to show them my creation - it will probably go unnoticed. but i knew that it didn't matter. the world can use as much marginal beauty as it can get.

Current mood: awake

Sunday, February 15, 2004


as i sat and watched my friends stand in the kitchen making ramen, i finally saw what happiness was. embraces, laughs, smiles. it was love. they sang together, created an aura of beauty that none other would ever surpass in my eyes. just being there, together; that is what keeps us alive.

Sunday, January 4, 2004

5:01AM - Way down in the hole.

I was sitting in the engine room. Sitting in the engine room on the diamond-plate, holding a rag over my thumb. It was bleeding. I had just smashed it in between the one and a half inch ratchet drive and the valve cover and so it was bleeding into my rag. I was sitting like that all by myself, and for the first time I noticed that I was sitting in silence. No generators, no mains screaming. Just silence and my heartbeat throbbing in my eardrums. And then I noticed the most beautiful, perfect thing. I noticed that the pool of blood on the deck was running down into the bilge. And down in the bilge, I had just enough light to see the blood drip and hang on top of the oil for a moment, before the whole thing collapsed upon itself and swallowed my blood. The oil healed itself and waited for more blood. But I was bleeding into a rag now. The oil would have to wait. I was wounded, and I was all alone, and I wasn't going anywhere.

12:52AM - Welcomed.

I was sent an email about this community and it made me feel wanted for the first time in too long, so I wanted to say thank you for that.

I've had many a beautiful moment in life. Specifically, a couple days ago I walked to the drugstore and decided to take a different, longer way home. I had just moved to the neighborhood and hadn't noticed that there was a field just 2 blocks behind my house. With tennis courts. Over looking the river and the downtown area of the city. I was walking through it and I started to cry. The wind made this remarkable sound, like everything but the natural was frozen. I looked up and saw the arms of the trees embracing over the rolling clouds in the sky. I felt foolish for crying afterwards, but in that moment there was nothing else. Just the purity of it all, the elegance, the grace. It was perfect in it's imperfection.

Thank you again for allowing me to share this. It means a lot to know that I'm not the only person out there who has these moments.

Sunday, December 28, 2003


Tonight I sit here and I am overwhelmed with beauty. I am here and I am now and this is life this instant. It's not what could be or should be, it is what is. What did it for me, or brought this about, was an amazingly beautiful picture by a talented artist on DeviantArt. If allowed, you can see it here

Death in life and life in death...beauty in our end and what we do during our short reign on this planet. With this picture I saw togetherness in death. I saw the meaning of connections. I saw my life and my regrets and my loves and hates and memories and saddness. I saw every emotion and every mistake; every smile and every tear; everything that will be and will one day not be. I saw lost friendship and missed chances...and though you may say this is not "beauty"...I saw it as such. I saw it as something transending this world...as something fragile, delicate, and immortal in it's own sense. It is love, unconditional, even in death - along with death - it is beauty in our own end.

Wednesday, December 24, 2003

2:39PM - July 2003.

I sat on my front porch this morning, looking out at the world as if I've grown to know It... not really doing anything. Just sitting and thinking... wondering if this was the person I really am. This little girl, inside a woman's body with her whole life ahead of her. I searched for meaning in the grass, the trees, the clouds, and wondered why they were so thick today. I saw this lonely petal on the sidewalk. Rose petal, and wondered where it came from... where it began... and why it was so lonesome. I saw myself in it.

Here against its will. Beautiful around others like it. But when .s.e.p.a.r.a.t.e.d., it becomes this mental picture of death... solitude. But only when its on its own does it really stand out. Its nothing but itself, ordinary and boring. Taken for granted.

and no one will ever know it was there or what had happened to it... unless there was some oblivious bistander... staring in its direction, observing it in it's natural state.

It was still pink, and fresh and new,... but dying on its own.

I watched the cars drive by and wondered if they saw me, knew me, passed judgment as they passed me.

I've been wearing the same wife beater for three days... covered in perfume. I just did laundry and have plenty to wear, but for some strange reason, I can't find a reason to wear anything but a plain white tank top and a pair of pajama pants. I've always dressed to stand out. Be unique. Be creative. But for the past 5 days, I've had no reason to be unique. to be creative. to stand out.

You can't stand out when you're all alone.

I've taken pictures of myself, to get an outside view of who I am to other people. Is this really how they see me? Something about seeing pictures of myself makes me feel like I'm not so alone. Pretending that someone was there to take it. To take interest. To savor the moment and capture it.

Its strange how easily we can trick ourselves into believing a lie.

Current mood: creative

Friday, December 19, 2003

11:31AM - the beauty of sadness

this is adapted from my journal.

so judoka came into town for the week to visit the athlete. i was walking with them and the athlete was getting annoyed so she just went off and left judoka and me behind. judoka was really upset because she basically came across the country just to see the athlete for a week and she'd been treating judoka really badly. so anyway, she just went off to the side of this building and started crying really hard. it was so heartbreaking. i can't stand seeing girls cry, especially if they're trying to be nice or being abused in any way.

so judoka was crying and talking about how all she wanted was to make the athlete happy and she'd taken 3 flights just to get here and now she was just getting abused. we were sitting down at the side of this building and i just kept apologizing like mad and telling her she deserved better because she did. judoka is probably the nicest person i've ever met in my life, she genuinely tries to make everyone's life better.

suddenly i looked into judoka's eyes and saw a tear emerge from the blue of her eye. she wiped it away really quickly but i still remember seeing that first one, and the many after it. all these emotions started emerging that i thought were buried inside of me forever. it was so beautifully heartbreaking it made me want to start crying with her. i just whispered in her ear that everything was going to be okay. i honestly wouldn't be surprised if at that moment she was the single most beautiful thing in this entire universe. i walked her back to her room and she went to bed.

it's so strange. ever since i got to college i felt like my soul has been dead. i've felt emotionally numb for so so long. but just seeing judoka sitting there crying, i don't know why but it made all the numbness go away.

In the first post of this community is the phrase: "True beauty isn't in the eye of the beholder; it's universal. Marginal beauty may still be a matter of taste."

I would like to think that moment was one of true beauty.

2:03PM - I would walk 500 miles

You drove five hours to be there.

It was Christmas vacation, you were bored of home and all of your friends were living half a day's drive south of you. At this point you would have taken a trip to walmart to get yourself out of the house.

Your phone rings, it's one of your friends, saying he has tickets for the midnight showing of Return of the King, but it's showing in their home town. He grabbed you a ticket because he knows you're crazy enough to drive.

So you drive five hours to be there.

You see them, you sit with them, you game with them. You missed them and you'd only been away for two days. They're your friends and they are happier because you are there. They thought of you seven counties away.

And you go to dinner and sit next to the boy, the boy who has a girlfriend but that doesn't really bother you. You split your meal with him and some how are seated so it's just the two of you in one section of the movie theatre.

You think more about your arms touching than the movie.

At three in the morning the entire group staggers back to one house and curls up on the floor.

He sleeps with his shirt off and you discover that he has one of the most beautiful tattoos right in the center of his shoulder blades.

That tattoo sticks with you for a few weeks and you know that it is always hidden under his t-shirts. And you know that it's beautiful.

Current mood: calm

Tuesday, December 16, 2003

11:32AM - Take it how you will...

This picture means more to me than you will ever know.

I don't know if pictures are even allowed on this community, and I don't care if this entry gets deleted but I wanted the opportunity to share with the world what I am most proud of.

The shallow mind doesn't see this for what it is, nor does it matter what it is, or how it was created. They don't look into this picture. They see what they don't understand, and I see my entire life & even the entire world, focused into one little picture.

This could symbolize so many things... & for those who are willing to take the time to do so, you may interpret it anyway that you'd like.

but when I see this, I see everything. The way the most simple everyday object can create such an amazing optical illusion. Who would have thought that something so perfect can be created with a mirror and a roll of toilet paper? Who would have thought that this was taken by accident?

I was trying to create a picture of a tunnel for a project when I came up with the ideal to use a toilet paper roll... I was trying to angle the roll so that the light would just slightly peek through, creating "the light at the end of the tunnel". It was going to be my vision of the way you meet god. And when trying to make my vision, in my search for god, I messed up. I made a mistake, and only found myself. A reflection of myself. Am I the only one that sees the symbolism in that?


Picture perfect. A world of only black and white with very few grey areas in between. This "tunnel" is the vision of how I see the world.

Maybe even the depiction of a journey to find yourself. You can make the choice to follow the tunnel, and in the light, at the end you can only find your true self. I chose not to follow this theory, because at the end of my tunnel, I am hiding.

Okay, maybe I've really given this far too much thought. Maybe I'm just insane. I don't really know how crazy I sound... or how to explain what I really mean. I'm sorry to inconvenience anyone with my philosophical bullshit... But this is me. This is who I am.

I'm sharing myself with you.


Current mood: beautiful.

Saturday, December 13, 2003


just wanted to add that i love this community. these sorta things happen to me all the time. here is the latest.

man i never realized how hard this would be to explain. but i'll try my best.

A bunch of my closest friends and I went on a marching band trip to Miami Florida and Disneyworld. We are from Tennessee so that is pretty amazing in its self. My best friend and I were going through basically the same ordeal. We had both found someone who makes us so happy and they are both so special to us. So being gone for a week just gave me alot of time to think about things.

So me and katie sat in the hotel room in Orlando, yes cheesy, but we were listening to a Disney soundtrack she had recently bought. I never noticed when I was smaller the beauty of Disney songs, but I found out then. We listened to A whole new world, which is BY FAR the sweetest song i've ever heard. We both knew exactly what each was thinking and just sat there and cried. Not a sad cry, but a happy one. Each of us knowing that we had both found someone that we cared deeply for. For her a boyfriend who treats her like a queen, and for me a best friend who is by far the most amazing person i've ever met. Katie and I just sat there, dreaming about the future, both of us hopeless romantics, the song just hit so close to home. Yes the other kids in the room made fun of us for weeks, but I wouldn't take back that moment for anything because it was so special to Katie and me.

(Aladdin:) I can show you the world
Shining, shimmering, splendid
Tell me, princess, now when did
you last let your heart decide

(Aladdin:)I can open your eyes
Take you wonder by wonder
Over, sideways, and under
On a magic carpet ride

(Aladdin:)A whole new world
A new fantastic point of view
No one to tell us no
Or where to go
Or say we're only dreaming

(Jasmine:)A whole new world
A dazzling place i never knew
But when I'm way up here
It's crystal clear
That now i'm in a whole new world
With you

(Jasmine:)Unbelievable sights
Indescribable feeling
Soaring, tumbling, freewheeling
Through an endless diamond sky

(Jasmine:) A whole new world
(Aladdin:) Don't you dare close your eyes
(Jasmine:) A hundred thousand things to see
(Aladdin:) Hold your breath- it gets better
(Jasmine:)I'm like a shooting star, I've come so far I can't go back to where i used to be

(Aladdin:) A whole new world
(Jasmine:) Every turn a surprize
(Aladdin:) With new horrizons to pursue
(Jasmine:) Every moment red letter

(both:) I'll chase them anywhere, there's time to spare, let me share this whole new world with you

(Aladdin:) A whole new world
(Jasmine:) A whole new world
(Aladdin:)That's where we'll be
(Jasmine:) That's where we'll be
(Aladdin:) A thrilling chase
(Jasmine:) A wonderous place
(Both:) For you and me

Monday, July 7, 2003


Walking through downtown at night, amidst the crowds of people there to see fireworks, crowds walking back to their cars or to the clubs or to their apartments. It's hot and humid, and there's not a lot of wind, and even though we've been standing in the middle of a crowd of sweaty people in a low area with even less wind than there is now, watching a band play for the last hour and a half, even though we are hot and sweaty too, even though we've been giggled at countless times for acting this way when we're nothing more than friends, he holds my hand the entire way back to my dad's apartment, our shoulders touching and our fingers linked together.

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