‘I did it for the money. I did it for the woman.’

‘I didn’t get the money. I didn’t get the woman.’

I love film noir. I’m sort of obsessed with it. Double Indemnity is probably the greatest example of how great it can be but it’s also just a straight-up incredible film, regardless of genre. When I watch it I think about the words and the shadows. I go away and I can’t stop thinking about it. I have to hold the thoughts in and not bring it up randomly in conversation. I make endless connections and relate it to unrelated things because I want it to be part of everything. I mean, c’mon, it’s Wilder x Chandler… It’s a fucking masterpiece.

And Barbara Stanwyck, what a badass.

This little (sort of cheesy) documentary covers most of why it’s one of the greatest films you’ll ever be lucky enough to see.

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Frank O’Hara

A Step Away from Them
BY FRANK O’HARA

It’s my lunch hour, so I go
for a walk among the hum-colored
cabs. First, down the sidewalk
where laborers feed their dirty
glistening torsos sandwiches
and Coca-Cola, with yellow helmets
on. They protect them from falling
bricks, I guess. Then onto the
avenue where skirts are flipping
above heels and blow up over
grates. The sun is hot, but the
cabs stir up the air. I look
at bargains in wristwatches. There
are cats playing in sawdust.
On
to Times Square, where the sign
blows smoke over my head, and higher
the waterfall pours lightly. A
Negro stands in a doorway with a
toothpick, languorously agitating.
A blonde chorus girl clicks: he
smiles and rubs his chin. Everything
suddenly honks: it is 12:40 of
a Thursday.
Neon in daylight is a
great pleasure, as Edwin Denby would
write, as are light bulbs in daylight.
I stop for a cheeseburger at JULIET’S
CORNER. Giulietta Masina, wife of
Federico Fellini, è bell’ attrice.
And chocolate malted. A lady in
foxes on such a day puts her poodle
in a cab.
There are several Puerto
Ricans on the avenue today, which
makes it beautiful and warm. First
Bunny died, then John Latouche,
then Jackson Pollock. But is the
earth as full as life was full, of them?
And one has eaten and one walks,
past the magazines with nudes
and the posters for BULLFIGHT and
the Manhattan Storage Warehouse,
which they’ll soon tear down. I
used to think they had the Armory
Show there.
A glass of papaya juice
and back to work. My heart is in my
pocket, it is Poems by Pierre Reverdy.

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Bus stories: She’s got Corey Haim hair

I got off first.

There’s a woman with Corey Haim hair on the 68.
Lost Boys hair.
Hair that’s brushed up to the sun.
Listening to headphones covered in foam. I look for signs of a Walkman. (This is London.)

Leather jacket.
I imagine a wacky shirt and garlic necklace underneath.
A burst of back and forth head nodding, then a left to right ‘nuh-uh muthafucka’ shake.
She’s sat at the front, looking out the window, owning the world.

I wonder if she likes comics.

corey

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“I am much better at saying how I feel when I no longer feel it.” ― Jeanette Winterson, Gut Symmetries

When I was 17 I used to write down words I loved. I wrote them in books. On scraps of paper held together with an elastic hair band. On the back of school textbooks. On cassette inserts and CD inlays. I wrote words I found inside unfeasibly tiny postcards and sent them to my boyfriend. The stamp was almost as big as the card.

I used these quotes, other people’s words, because I couldn’t say my own. Pushing them out took an effort that I just couldn’t muster. I couldn’t do it. They sat in me. Growing. Degrading. Dying. I could never say what I felt. Maybe because I’ve always found it hard to know what I’m feeling.

The weight of words. Anchored by them. Determined by them. Hanging on to them. Never forgetting them. The cruel words that nestled in between my collarbones. The praise that slid off my shoulder and sank into the campsite grass. The words that clunked around in glasses full of whiskey, melting like ice cubes. The glibness of words said and the breaths in between. Made up of them. Joined like dots. Hung from them like pictures on wire. Words have owned me. Broken me. Defined me. Held me. Armed me. Hidden me. Saved me. Made me me.

I’m thinking about all of this because of James Jones‘ designs for Jeanette Winterson’s new Vintage covers. Jeanette Winterson gives good quote and I wrote down a lot of her words when I was young.

“I began playing around with the illustrations as vectors – as I wanted that really digital look to set them apart – and it was at this point that they resembled Jeanette’s writing the most,” says Jones.

“Her writing is like no one else’s: passionate, punchy, lucid and lyrical, and each cover aims to represent a tiny bit of this to the reader. The clash between organic materials/objects and something a bit sleeker helps portray the sexual nature of some of the subject matter and its surreal tones.”

Beautiful.

JW_James Jones

JW_James Jones

JW_James Jones

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