a novel in progress

Tag: Rolling Stone Magazine

Excerpts From A Diary 38

[Fall, 1989]


I have been busy all morning.  I really thought I’d sleep in after what was a bitch of a weekend – Darryl fucked us again – a party cancelled – I caught the guy in a lie & had to tell him to fuck off & die – Teddy & I had a major argument Friday night – I walked out & want to Falco’s & got really drunk – Mike Taylor was there – he used to live with Maryellen but I guess they’ve broken up – we were hustling pool together – hustling college boys – I was the partner who played most of the game – making pretty good shots but always setting up the other guy – & then near the end, Mike would go in for the kill.  Gambling’s not allowed at Falco’s but we were playing for drinks & I got smashed.  Mike walked me home – he was drunker than I am.  Since he & Maryellen broke up, I thought that maybe he was trying to hit on me but he was so drunk I don’t think he was able to think in those terms.  He was barely able to walk a straight line.

Anyway – I was sick all day on Saturday – I had three parties to work – the last one started at 12:30 a.m. – I could barely walk yesterday – but the Bills kicked ass & we got some ass-kicking weed – so I guess the weekend ended up OK – well it ended up great – I was almost asleep when Teddy started making love to me – I was so surprised – twice in one month!  I guess his sex drive is returning because we’re not doing as much coke – or maybe he’s just relieved because the money’s working out – who knows, who cares – I’m not complaining – you know me, I can never get enough – I guess you could say that the weekend ended like it started – since I was with Jesse Friday morning – but that’s another thing – really nothing alike at all when you think about it.  All men are not the same.

Shera never called me – you really have to wonder about some people.  Not even to give me a call.  Well – that’s life – I can’t worry about her – or anyone else – I’m too busy.  I started packing to move this morning.  The pictures are coming off the walls – the books are getting packed.  Some of these pictures have been on these walls for 8 years!  Oh – this place is already beginning to look strange!  It’s such a bittersweet feeling – part of my life is being packed away.  8 years.  I have certainly gone though some heavy changes here.


Totally upset.  Totally depressed.  The money from Mom hasn’t arrived.  Without it – there is no trip to San Francisco – there’s no vacation at all.  All is not lost, I suppose – it could come tomorrow – & we could still go.  But we have to get the weed tonight – Pat works until 9 on Thursday – I am totally beside myself.  I am so sick of things fucking up.  This trip is so fucking stupid anyway.  It’s all my fault.  I could have worked all weekend & gone out to dinner on Monday but no!  I had to have a stupid honeymoon!

Jesse called – last week he offered to help financially – but this week – “I’m all tapped out” – sure you are!  Fuck off & die!  These assholes & their stupid bank accounts!  Ya’ll love me so much but can’t spare a lousy $100!  Fuck no!

Darryl hasn’t called either.  We’ll never see that $100 again.


Well everything worked out.  I went to Anthony Falco – he always helps me out.  I have to pay him back – of course – but he always helps.  I told him I’d do anything to help him – with my limited resources – a man like that deserves my best blow jobs! – Whatever he wants! – He’s a fucking sweetheart.  I’ve loved him for a long time.

There wasn’t much wood at Mack Lumber – now that it’s cold – & people with wood-burning stoves are burning everything in sight.  But Jesse had saved pieces for us – half a truck-load – stuff from his Christmas presents – mistakes – really nice wood!  & of course – we got weed – a quarter & a gram for $70!  Oh well.  At least we have a little bit.

I have to continue packing – not camping – I did that yesterday – but more packing for moving – I’ll finish taking the pictures off the walls today.  So much to do!  So much to pack!


Evangola State Park.  The joys of camping.  We are the only people here.  We had a few neighbors last night but they’ve left.  There’s a Coleman camper set up half-way around the circle but no people.  It’s so quiet – a quiet filled with sound – the sound of the surf – the sound of the wind in the trees – birds – bees – crickets – we are on a point, about 40 feet over Lake Erie – a rocky ledge – so you can’t see the water unless you walk through the woods to the ledge – actually to the fence – & there is Lake Erie – blue-grey & magnificent – white heads on the waves – spray in the air – & the smell of fall – not the crisp, dry fall of the inland but a damp, moldy fall.  The trees are red, orange, yellow, maroon.  The bushes bear berries – red, purple, blue.  There are wild-flowers everywhere.


It’s funny how we wake up at our regular times – our internal alarm clocks work really well – we lie in bed & cuddle – it is so toasty warm – the bed is made with flannel sheets, my stag blanket & the camping quilt.  The furnace ran all night, so the inside of the trailer is really warm.  But outside!  The wind’s blowing cold off the lake – the water looks so cold! – I’m wearing layers of clothing – underwear! – my old blue tights – red socks – my warm navy blue sweater with the collar up – jean jacket & vest.  Also my gloves – my writing gloves with the finger tips cut off – & my sneakers, of course.  We have a fire going already & I’m sitting close by!  A hot coffee thick with half & half & sugar warms my insides.  The colors of the leaves are more brilliant than ever.  Blue sky with puffy clouds – white, grey & black – moving quickly away from the lake.  The sun – bright & warm – but behind a cloud at the moment – the wind seems colder than ever.  Winter’s on the way!


Teddy’s still in bed.  I’ve made coffees – mmm. As soon as he’s up & about, we’re going to get a paper.  He’s up!  The smell of the coffee must’ve gotten to him.  Charles Kuralt is on TV.  I love that man!  Such a smooth, comforting voice!  Such an excellent bald head!  I’d love to stick my tits in his face!

It’s a grey morning.  The wind has totally died down.  It’s eerie – the lack of sound.  You can barely hear the surf.  Everything seems to be waiting – for what?  The rain?  Gee, I hope it doesn’t rain.  Not that it would bother me to have to spend the day indoors – not with books & football – but tomorrow we pack up & you never want to fold up the trailer when it’s wet.  Well – we’ll just have to wait & see!  Charles Kuralt just said that tomorrow is going to be a beautiful October day nearly everywhere.

Afternoon.  It has turned into a beautiful afternoon.  The clouds have broken up & the sun is shining – brightly through the breaks of clouds – or diffusely through wisps of clouds – now the sun it struggling to shine through a big grey mass.

We have killed the champagne.  Now we are going for a walk – it’s half-time.


Getting packed up.  My worked is essentially done – the dishes – cleaning the inside of the trailer – folding the blankets – etc.  I can’t help but feel a little sad.  But I’m looking forward – moving into a new place.  Making new memories – Halloween, Thanksgiving, Christmas.

It is another lovely day, although cool.  We’re burning up the rest of the wood.  Soon it’ll be time to go – home to see our babies.  I miss them so much!

Noon.  Time to go.  Such a beautiful day.  A lot like our wedding day – seven years ago.

Evening.  Out of joints.  Not likely to get any – that’s life!  I’m in a good mood anyway – got a vodka & tea here – got TV dinners in the oven – just glad to be home with Shadow & Missy.  Tomorrow – cleaning out closets & packing continues.


Busy.  I finished cleaning out my dressing room closet – going through every box – discarding or packing my fashion & porno mags.  Mostly discarding.  I don’t know where I’m going to have room to keep all this stuff.  Now I’ve started with the office closet.  It’s 100% worse than the dressing room closet – almost completely filled.  My office is such a mess – a dumping ground for every other room – it’s all get cleaned – tossed out – or packed sooner or later.  As much as I want to keep everything, at this point I am ready to throw 75% of everything into the garbage.  I just don’t have the energy to pack it all – or to find places for it in the new apartment.  We don’t have any storage in the new place & it’s just so much smaller.

Right now, I’m going through my Rolling Stone magazines – of course I am keeping those – putting them in order by date – reading articles – watching a movie – smoking bowls.  I’ve got a cold – I feel dizzy – my head aches.  I just ate some chicken soup & took some more aspirin.  I should take a nap.  But there’s so much that needs to be done – everything has to be packed up & ready to go by next week.  At least I have the time to do it all – if I stay well.  I’m glad I’m well-organized – everything’s been catalogued & put in its place years ago.  There’s just so much of everything!  Oh, I’m such a pack-rat!  I am tossing out less than half of what I have – but I haven’t collected, catalogued & stored all this stuff for all these years to throw it away now.  I just wish Teddy had found us a larger apartment!  What was he thinking?  Of course – none of this stuff is important to him.

Oh, I am tired!  I think it’s time for a nap.


I just finished going through all my magazines & newspapers.  What a chore!  It took me days.  As much as I wanted to keep all of them, I just couldn’t.  It really made me cry.  Anyway – now I can get back to packing books.  I have to finish taking the pictures off the office walls & pack up all the knick-knacks.  & the kitchen hasn’t been touched yet.

We got the keys to the new place today.  The electricity was turned on yesterday & the gas will be turned on Monday.  On Monday, Teddy’s dropping me off in the morning – I have to be there for the gas company – & I’m gonna clean the place.  Not that it’s really dirty – for which I am thankful – but it needs to be power-played – vacuumed – the fridge & oven need cleaning – the bathroom – I might even do the windows.


At 8:10 p.m., we got the news that a major earthquake hit the San Francisco area – the Bay Bridge collapsed – it was 5 p.m. there – rush hour – massive damage – people dead & wounded – fires burning out of control – we have been watching the news all night.  Keith hasn’t called us but he called Mom – who called us & reported that he is fine & so is his home.  How I wish we had been able to get out there!

Later.  At the new house.  I am so pissed off.  I forgot to bring the ammonia.  I’ll have to ride home – but then I might miss the gas company.  Fuck!  I’m pissed!  I was up half the night – trying to get the packing done – plus with the news from California – & my period – I’m just so fucking out of it.

Fuck it!  I’m gonna clean the rest of the house first & then go home.  What a fucking drag!  I’m so sick of moving!  I can hardly wait until it’s all over!


Depressed.  It’s freezing in this stupid fucking house – I can hardly wait to move into the new place with its gas furnace – it’s pouring rain – it’s supposed to rain all day – how are we supposed to move in this weather? – I have a sore throat & a congested chest – I also got my period – fucking bullshit!  Jesse was supposed to show up last night with some weed – but he never showed – never called – fucking asshole!  Why can’t people at least call?

I lit the fire in the living room & made a bed for myself with a sleeping bag & blankets.  I’m gonna sleep this morning – hopefully it’ll stop raining soon – I still have to clean the bathroom at the new place – we have a lot of moving to do today – I have to conserve my strength.

Packing up the kitchen – wrapping each dish in newspaper & then setting them into a box.  Makes me think of working at Sibley’s – packing sets of dishes – crystal – other breakables – to be sent UPS to whatever bride awaited them – oh, I learned my lessons well – even though that was almost 10 years ago – oh, how time flies!

I ought to get back to work.  I’m watching “Perry Mason”.  I feel so fatigued.  My throat hurts so – I should take my aspirin & some more cough medicine.  Maybe a shot of vodka.  Cognac or Drambuie would be better – not that I have any – but that’s life.


Sitting in our new living room.  Things are really beginning to look great.  The only room left to set up & unpack is the front room – the office/library.  Tomorrow I’ll start on it.  The job I have been waiting for!  It’s gonna look so great.

The boys upstairs seem nice.  They’re frat boys – TKE.  I had to laugh – TKE was the first party I attended at UB.  Official party, anyway.  It is really weird hearing footsteps over my head.  The kitty-cats were really freaked out by that sound too – they have been freaked out all weekend anyway – the more furniture that disappeared from the old place, the more they were freaking – & Saturday, I shut them up in our bedroom while everyone was here moving stuff & then they got put into Danielle’s cat carrier & then to the new place.  It was cold & rainy/snowy – Danielle took us over in her car – they meowed so piteously – I had never heard that cry from them before.  When we got to the new house, I took them into the new bedroom, closed the door, set up the litter box & left them.  After everything was moved in, I released them.  They have been exploring ever since.

Later.  We started on the front room.  Teddy hung a lamp & I started arranging my desk.  I had two desks on Minnesota Avenue – one in the dining room, which was basically a correspondence desk & the one in my office.  The dining room desk is now in the dressing/sewing room – the extra bedroom – & will be where I keep & fix my jewelry, make-up, costume design & altar to the Goddess.  So now my correspondence – address books, desk calendar, stationary, etc. – has to be added to my work desk.  Not a big deal & it’s probably better that I do everything at one desk anyway.

I’m tired but it’s so hard to stop – I don’t even want to sleep in tomorrow – I want to get up early & set up the office.  But we’ll see.  I’m pretty exhausted – I’m running – have been running – on nervous energy.

It’s so nice here.  It’s nice being in a place that is all there – all the windows – nothing broken – constant hot water – wall switches & outlets in logical places – a big fridge – a stove that heats up quickly – I never realized how slow & uneven that other stove was.  The main thing is – it’s warm & cozy here.  It’s carpeted in every room – including the bathroom.  I think we’re gonna like it here.


Too busy to write.  I slept until 11:30 a.m. yesterday – I was so tired – 2 cups of coffee & a shower later, I was unpacking books & setting up bookcases.  I worked until 12:30 a.m. – pretty much non-stop – except for when Teddy & I went over to the old place to pick up the mail & get the messages & bring back a few more things – & of course when I made dinner.  I got right up this morning & right back to work – I’m up to the R’s – I’ve been drinking coffee all morning but soon I’ll break for some eggs & toast.  I’ll be working on the office all day.

Yesterday I also cleaned the oven – what a job!  It took four applications of Easy-Off & I still had to scrape off the burnt on grease & food.  It’s hard to believe that people can be that slobby.

Night.  Smoking a joint – drinking a beer – eating an apple – watching a program on Channel 17 about the 1906 San Francisco earthquake.  I have my Tarot cards with me – it’s been eons since I tossed them – since October 2 – I’ve been sleeping with them under my  pillow to get the vibrations up to date – oh, moving certainly has disrupted my life – my habits – my cycles –


The end of another busy week.  We’re gonna move a lot of stuff today – lots of stuff that’ll get stored in the cellar – plus the rest of the picture, the frames, my collages – whatever we feel like.  My office – the office, I should say – is now a dream office – plants & books everywhere – it’s beautiful.  I have been waiting my entire life for a room like this.

Every day when we’ve been going over to the old place & playing back the messages.  There’s a strike going on with NY Telephone & we can’t set up new phone service yet.  So we have to keep the old service in the old place so I can keep working.

I got my bike & rode home.  I was just arriving when a truck drove by with two guys in it & they were hanging out the windows to get a look at me – I thought – that one guy looks like Jesse!  Well – guess what!  It was Jesse!  He was out to lunch with a guy on his crew.  They parked the truck & came in the new place to check it out & smoke a doobie with me.  He said he had some fabulous new weed – the joint we smoked was killer – & he would be calling Teddy soon to do a deal.

“Call me,” I said, as he was walking out the door.  “Or maybe you don’t want me anymore.”

“No, it’s not that” he said.  “You know I want you – that hasn’t changed. I’ve been working my butt off, trying to support my family – & I’m getting pretty tired of working all the time!”

“Poor buddy,” I crooned – but inside I was laughing.  Poor buddy, indeed!   He’ll be here – soon enough.  I’d be amazed if Doreen wasn’t pregnant again by the middle of next year.  & then he’ll be here all the time.  If only to complain about her.


I’ve got so much to do today – baking a Samhain apple pie – setting up my Goddess wall – typing up my Tarot notes – writing a poem to Hecate – raking the yard – I should get going!

Jesse stopped over yesterday.  He got me totally stoned & left me with a nice bud.

We moved the rest of the plants yesterday.


It’s snowing.  In the 70’s on Monday & snowing today!  It looks so pretty.

It’s been a busy week.  Tuesday – of course – was Halloween – I baked an apple pie – with a pentacle etched into the top crust – any feelings of disappointment I had because I’m not in a coven & couldn’t participate in a Samhain ritual disappeared while I was making the pie.  For if cooking & baking are not acts of magic & transformation, I don’t know what is.  The same with sewing – all needlework – & gardening & writing & painting & making love – all the things I excel at.  & performance.  I create magic every time I do a show.  & isn’t that what witchcraft is all about?

I have 2 jobs tomorrow night & a few next weekend but that’s it.  Not having a phone is really beginning to hurt.


We were in an accident last night – on the way home from our parties – on Bailey Ave – a black dude hit us – he was completely wasted – he was driving a white Lincoln – he U-turned right in front of us – Teddy veered but couldn’t help hitting the dude – he’s inconsolable – his beautiful truck –

We almost went out to Darryl’s – we were in fact on our way – but we turned around & went home – we came home!  We’re real glad we did – things are bad – the truck will cost a lot to fix – but at least we resisted temptation – another futile act – besides we bought a half an ounce today – & tomorrow we go to Wegman’s.  We’ll be going out to Darryl’s much less in the future – if at all.


My tapes came!  Well – all of them except the Don Henley one – Patsy Cline, Roy Orbison & U2.  I put the Patsy Cline on immediately – this is the way radio sounded when I was a real little girl – before the Beatles – well the way WBEN sounded – which is what Mama had on in the mornings – in the kitchen, as she made breakfast for all of us.

The drapery rod fell down today – the one in the office – so I thought I’d put in the traverse cord.  Should be easy, right?  I can’t get the damn thing correct & I’ve tried three times – I guess I’ll have to wait until Teddy gets home – he should be here soon.


Jesse stopped by this morning.  I was in the middle of work & really not in the mood for him – but he told me that my phone was disconnected – not temporarily disconnected – but totally turned off.  My career is over after this weekend.  I have no more bookings!  I don’t know whether to laugh or to cry!  I mean, this is what I wanted, right?  But – not yet!  Not this way!  Teddy says that the phone will get turned back on & people will be calling again – presumably people who haven’t tried in the last week – or heard that the it’s disconnected – or think that I’m out of business – or whatever – well, there’s nothing I can do about it – goddamn phone strike!  I mean, people move & need to move their phones & with the strike, it’s impossible – what are businesses doing?  Are we supposed to just go without a phone?

Anyway, I decided to look for a job – not that I really want to work – but cocaine or no cocaine – we can’t live on what Teddy makes – well, not comfortably – I’m not really sure how to go about this – I know I don’t want an office job.  If I have a sit at a desk at work, I’m not gonna wanna do it at home & I gotta do it at home – I’m not sacrificing my writing for anything.  I’ll fucking dance in a club before I do that!  & I certainly don’t want to dance in a club.  I mean – without a car – what am I supposed to do – take the bus to work?  Or cabs?  That gets real expensive real fast.  I’m looking for a job as a barmaid – I’m gonna hit near-by taverns first & then spread out.  Teddy hates the idea.  I can’t help it.  I gotta have constant cash flow or I get nervous.  I get worried.

I’m nervous & worried right now.  I supposed I’m overreacting – as usual – but I was never one to wait for trouble – I’ll take off before it gets here – or meet it head on – whatever happens.


A lot has happened since Tuesday.  I went looking for work & found nothing – well not a job – but I found Mark Miles – he’s been around – his marriage broke up a year ago & he split town but now he’s back – he works at The Skeptical Inquirer/Prometheus Books – he wants me to write my autobiography!  He says I’m famous – everyone has seen Cori.  & how!  Talking to him improved my mood – I’ve been in a bad mood lately – being with him renewed my confidence – made my future look brighter – if not less vague – oh well – my future’s always been a blur.

But one thing he told me really shock me.  It’s been a while since I’ve talked to Jon but it’s not like I’ve had a phone.  I was trying to remember the last time we spoke – maybe it was six months ago – maybe more.  I’ve been so busy that I haven’t really noticed.  Of course – I read his columns about local music in the Buffalo News.  Honestly though – I’m so busy with my own career that I don’t have time for local music anymore.  It’s not like 10 years ago when I was actually part of the scene.  I wish I still was but I just don’t have the time.  Anyway – Mark told me that Jon & Sara just had their first child – a little girl – with the stripper-sounding name of Brandy.  What – is that their favorite thing to drink?  I know it’s not Jon’s favorite song.  “Did they get married?” I asked.  “Yes,” Mark answered.  “They didn’t have a wedding – I guess when Sara told Jon she was pregnant, he insisted on getting married – they just went to City Hall & did it. Strangers off the street as witnesses.”

I felt really weird.  I remembered telling Jon I was pregnant – it may have been 11 years ago but it was like yesterday.  & he certainly didn’t “insist” that we get married.  He “insisted” that I get an abortion.  Of course – we were both in college & neither of us had good jobs – Jon was working at a bowling alley & I wasn’t working at all – of course it’s not like Jon is making much money right now – as a music critic –  but apparently Sara is – graphic arts is a lucrative career.  Mark told me that Jon was a “house husband” most of the time, “taking care of the baby & writing.”  I thought about Jesse – taking care of the babies when he was laid off while Doreen went to work as a nurse.

“Hey, you OK?” asked Mark.

I laughed.  “Yeah, I’m alright.”  But I wasn’t.  I knew I wasn’t.  What happened with Jon so many years ago had broken me in a way that had never been repaired.

“C’mon,” he stood up.  “Let’s go have a drink.  You look like you need one.”  We went to Falco’s.


The phone is back on – I’m glad!  Maybe I will work this coming weekend.  I had a pretty lousy time this weekend – my bad mood again – I need an adjustment in the worst way – every joint & muscle aches.  It’s an effort to stretch every day.  My back is so out of whack that every move hurts – try dancing like this.  & no coke, too – we can’t afford it – don’t want to afford it!  I gotta hang in there – if we keep working & keep away from coke – everything will work out – including a good Christmas – & I will be able to afford to see Dr. West again.


I went downtown yesterday.  It was the last beautiful day – today it’s raining – blowing – snowing & freezing – I went out to lunch with P.W. – I called about a typist job, too – I have a job interview at 3 today.  I got bunches of books out.  I had fun – it was a great day!  I took the #13 Kensington bus to the Utica Station & then the train downtown.  Coming back, I took the train to Amherst Street, then a #32 Amherst Street bus to Bailey Ave.  I had to wait a half-hour for the bus but I read until it arrived.  I stopped in a Falco’s for a beer & to make some phone calls – oh & I am working this weekend!  Teddy was right – I did get upset about nothing.

How the wind is blowing!  Winter is coming!

Night.  I forgot to mention that last night Pat stopped in.  He brought 2 joints & a tape – the new Dead album on one side & Live Dead on the other.  Pat’s not even a Deadhead but he knows I am – I thought that was sweet of him to bring those over.  He’s really more into jazz & rhythm & blues.  He stayed for a while – it was such a nice visit.  We really haven’t had that many people over yet to see the place – something I’ve been rather upset about – but anyone who’s been here is amazed that we’re already so settled so maybe they think we’re still unpacking or something.  I’m gonna get the Chistmas & Solstice cards out really early this year – right after Thanksgiving – & add a little note inviting people over.  I love this place so much – I’m really proud of it.


No work tonight.  It feels so weird to be staying home.  We worked last night.  We spent our money on food & home necessities.  We joke about how we would love a line but it feels better to eat – to be warm – to have the bills paid – to have a bag of weed.


I’ve been under the weather all day.  I really need an adjustment – I decided to borrow money from Anthony & go to Dr.West’s tomorrow.  I have continual headaches – my neck is stiff – my whole body aches.  With Thanksgiving shopping on Wednesday – a party on Wednesday night – & cooking all day Thursday – I just don’t want the pain – I want to relax & enjoy myself on Thanksgiving.  Not hurt – I hope Anthony can lend me the money.


I couldn’t get the money from Anthony.  Oh well.  I feel a lot better today anyway.  Well – actually – I felt pretty bad this morning – a really bad migraine – I woke up with it – so I slept in – I didn’t get up until 10:30 a.m. – & I still had the stupid migraine – everything went wrong – every little job – the cellar fridge – the litter box – turned into a large job – I didn’t feel good until I got into the shower.  I did my nails while I watched “Perry Mason” – then made up & went out.  I looked really good & my headache had gone away – so even though Anthony wasn’t able to help me out – I felt so good – I barely cared.  & Anthony was really sweet about it – he always is.  I know he loves me – which is all that matters.


Tired.  Depressed.  A bad headache.  A stiff neck.  I’m homesick.  This time of the year is so tough on me – on one hand, I’m happy we’re staying home – I’m doing a turkey dinner & everything that goes with it – & on the other hand, I miss my family.  Teddy keeps saying, “I’m your family, Shadow & Missy’s your family” & of course he’s right – but still – I miss Mom – I miss everyone.  It’s been – how long? – since June, 1988 – when I saw them last – & it wasn’t the best reunion – but oh well.  Dwelling on it won’t make me feel any better.

I suppose things would look brighter if I had a joint to smoke.  & I suppose having my period is contributing to my depression.

I guess I’ll go bake the pumpkin pie – gotta be done anyway – besides – baking always cheers me up.


Feeling much better.  After I wrote for a moment, I laid down for a moment & was out cold for an hour.  I woke up & couldn’t get up – I finally dragged myself out of bed & started making the pie.  I put on my Patsy Cline tape to keep myself company – with the boys upstairs gone, the house is so quiet — & the next thing I knew, I was sitting at the kitchen table – sobbing into a towel.  I was totally gone – a complete wreck – then the doorbell rang.  I wiped my face off & answered the door – it was Jesse.  Yes – I’ve been avoiding him – trying to pretend he doesn’t exist – but at that moment – I was never happier to see anyone.

“What’s the matter, darlin’?”

“Oh Jesse – I’m so depressed – I’m so homesick!”  & then I was in his arms – sobbing, sobbing – oh, his comforting bulk – his physical largeness – my face pressed into his sweater smelling of cigarette smoke.  He started attacking Teddy – saying how insensitive he was – not going to my mother’s house for Thanksgiving when that’s where I wanted to be – & of course the more he denigrated Teddy, the more I defended him & Jesse started to laugh – “Get off your high horse,” he said.  “I see you’re feeling better,” he added dryly.  Before he left, he massaged my back & cracked my spine & neck – it was such a blessed relief – a release of tension.  I have been so tense – so tense – too tense.

The rest of Wednesday was great.  Teddy took me out to lunch at Cayuga Snack Bar – a Thanksgiving tradition.  Then we came home & napped all afternoon.  When we got up, we went to Falco’s.  I was hoping to run into Mark Miles but never showed – his boss M.B. did & I introduced myself.  We went home & Pat showed up with a half an ounce of weed & a gram of coke.  We went to that party in a great mood.  I’ve never danced better.  It was a really good party.  Afterwards, we stopped back in at Falco’s & then home again to party & play backgammon.  I was definitely under the weather for Thanksgiving though – the turkey didn’t get in until 1 p.m. & I went back to bed after that.  But when I re-awoke at 2:30, I felt great.  We smoked joints – munched on cheese & pepperoni & crackers – pickles & olives – celery & carrot sticks & Marie’s blue cheese dressing – until dinner was ready at 6 p.m. – & dinner was great!  Everything tasted wonderful!  Of course – cleaning up took a long time – but I did it in stages – in between joints – but it was nice – a really nice Thanksgiving.


Watching the Bills-Bengals game.  We’re on top – 17-0.  We’re almost out of weed again – down to roaches – Pat says there isn’t anything to be had – at least for today.  That’s life.  Curtis turned up again – he has some acid!  I really hope we can get some!  It’s been close to 2 years since we last tripped.  Is that possible?  We used to trip all the time.  Cocaine has really ruined the drug market.  I mean – it’s all anyone has – there’s little weed – even less LSD or shrooms or buttons or any other hallucinogens – you can get pain killers, but that’s about it.  I miss tripping.  I really do.

I’ve been working on a collections of poems called “A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Seductress.”  I want to have it done & in Mark Miles’ hands by the end of the week.

I also need to get laid.  It occurred to me that I’m constantly hungry & constantly eating because I’m constantly horny.  I really have to do something about this.  It doesn’t help to masturbate more.  In fact – it makes it worse – I want to be with someone – not by myself – I want passion – there really isn’t any passion in masturbation – except in fantasies – & I’m sick of fantasies – I want the real thing & I want it regularly – & often – not every few months when Teddy finally feels like it.  Or once a year!  I mean – what the fuck!  I love him so much & I don’t want to hurt him but I can’t go on like this – I’ll end up as fat as a sow if I do – not to mention completely out of my mind.

Something else – I keep thinking that I’d like to have a baby – especially if I’m not going to be dancing anymore.  Teddy doesn’t want children – he’s said so many times – but I still think about it.  I would really love a daughter – I already have a name picked out – Janine Rebecca.


I slept in today.  I didn’t plan to – but something about Mondays makes me want to sleep.  Maybe it’s just a habit left over from our drug days.  It just feels so good to lie in bed & drift off into fantasies – hope that they come true – masturbate & call for Jesse – I can’t help it – fall back asleep – & wake hours later – feeling guilty because I have so much to do.

But I’m up now – drinking coffee & writing.  I’m ignoring the housework today.  Oh – I’ll probably straighten up the house during “Perry Mason”.

I just finished a poem called “Shadow”.


I just finished my book.  Well – I have to type up the table of contents – but the all the poems are typed & in order.  The sections are:  High School Lovers, The Knight of Cups, The Rainbow, & Man on a Motorcycle.  I only used a fraction of my poems – maybe around 100 of them – & I’m already thinking of the next book – the wild life – love affairs – dancing & drugs – & eventually I want to do one about spirituality – maybe called it Myths, Dreams & Visions – include my Goddess poems & my dream poems.  But that’s all in the future – I’m just glad to have this book done.

I’m scared about showing it to Mark – or to anyone for that matter.  I’m afraid he won’t be interested – or he’ll read them only as a courtesy – or he’ll think they suck – or they’re amateurish – or immature – or something else that will make me feel like shit.  I’m so scared.


I’m finished.  I did the table of contents after my shower this morning & corrected the only two typos after breakfast.  Then I cleaned the house for the first time in days – housework always gets neglected when I’m writing.  Now I have the new Dead album on.  I should go out & call Mark.  I’m just so frightened – really scared – of rejection.  One thing I realized when I was working on this book was that the pain & rejection I suffered ten years ago still burns.  Also – I am amazingly angry about it – I used to be depressed – but anger & depression are really the same emotion – kinda like positive & negative poles of the same lousy feeling.  Anyway – I’m not over the pain – I’m not over wishing that things could have different.  Also – the feeling like no one’s ever really taken me seriously – least of all Jon – which is why some of my most extreme anger is directed at him – that affair almost destroyed me & what for?  Things would be so different now!

I’ve been having really telling dreams lately – dreams in which I’m angry – I’m fighting – I’m jealous – & I’m acting on my feelings instead of getting depressed or ignoring them or partying away the pain.  I’m not always right in fact in some dreams I really overreact – like beating the shit out of someone for $12 – but it does show that as happy as I am with my new home – with Teddy – with the cats – I am really angry – angry because I want to be taken seriously as an artist – & I want sexual passion – I think that’s one of the reasons I’m so angry.  I’m working out the anger I feel in my dreams instead of in my conscious life because I can’t work it out in consciously – I’m so afraid of hurting Teddy – I really love him – but I can no longer deny – if I ever did – that this marriage is not what I really want.  I mean – within 6 months of my marriage – I was having an affair with Jesse.  & one of the poems I wrote for Jon – do you keep on wanting me? – was written a week before the wedding & published in the Buffalo News shortly afterward.  I mean – I told the entire world that I was thinking about a past lover – just as I was getting married.  But Teddy – I love him so much – he loves me so much – why can’t it be enough?  & what’s missing?  Because I know something is missing.  Something is very wrong & has been from the very beginning.

Well – this isn’t getting my poems published.

Noon.  I just called Mark.  We’re getting together on Friday at noon.  He’s enthusiastic – at least he sounded that way.  I’m so nervous!  Oh Mother!  I want everything to turn out well!

Night.  At turns exhilarated & scared.  Afraid I’m making too much out of nothing – my imagination is going nuts – running wild – I don’t know how I’ll live until Friday.  Oh, I wish I hadn’t gotten so fat!  Actually – I look pregnant.  Oh well – I’m still thinner & in better shape than I was at any time up until April & May of 1980 – when I was doing those great black beauties – oh how I wish I could still get those! – oh well.  I’m still great looking!  I still have a great figure – just a little more of it.  Besides – I’ve always been sexy – large or small.  I just feel a little more confident when I’m small.

I know – I know – it’s my writing that’s important – not my looks.  It’s just looking good makes me feel better & more confident in all areas of my life – hey, I need all the help I can get!

I’m just dying – Friday can’t get here fast enough.


Bored.  I finally finished a poem I’ve been working on all summer long & now I just can’t get into anything else.  I shoveled the driveway & front walk & put the garbage out.  The cats are crawling all over me.  I’ve got a lot of books out from the library – I guess I’ll read the rest of them this afternoon.  I’ve got chicken rice soup on the stove – I’ll have lunch & read & probably take a nap – I’d take a walk, but it’s blowing cold & snow.  I should transcribe a diary – or inventory some books – I just don’t feel like doing anything.



All made up.  I must have changed my clothes a dozen times – now I’m in my green sweater – green, the color of money – color of life – the color to attract love – & my jeans & boots – I considered a dress but fuck! – I’m comfortable in jeans & let’s not get carried away here – plus it’s cold out & I dress for the weather.  I’m so nervous!  There – I just put on some perfume.  A shot of perfume is a shot of courage.

Noon.  At Falco’s.  I’m so afraid he’ll never show.

Afternoon.  Well, he came over & we talked – mostly about people we both knew – but since he had to get back to work, he couldn’t stay long – he took the manuscript & left – he said he’d read it over the weekend & get back to me – I have such a feeling of anticlimax – & oh god – I am dying for a drink – dying, dying, dying!  Oh, I am so sick of being broke!  I can’t even borrow any money off Anthony because I’m not working this weekend.  All I have is a bicentennial quarter.  Oh Jesse!  Where are you when I need you!


Excerpts From a Diary 4

[April, 1979]
I feel a little better. I just got out of the hospital – the psych ward – I can’t believe I was in there but I couldn’t stop crying – Eddie was the only one who seemed to care – even my roommates were like – well, that’s the way she is – but after 10 days of non-stop tears & missing classes, he said, “Cori, you’ve got to do something” & he took me to the ER. They weren’t even going to take me. I wasn’t actively suicidal. I was like, “What do I have to do? Slice my wrists? Where’s your knife Eddie, I’ll do it now.” I was really insistent & finally they admitted me. Honestly I can’t imagine slicing into my beautiful skin – or even just cutting it a little bit like some of my friends do – but I wasn’t allowed to use a razor or even shower unattended the whole time I was there. I couldn’t wait to get back to the dorms & take a long hot shower by myself & shave my legs & underarms & wash my hair! I felt so itchy & grotty!
I actually have almost no hair left. It was a few days after the John Cale thing – I got drunk & decided to cut my hair – I ended up with almost no hair at all – I wanted a real punk look but instead of looking tough & cool, I ended up looking like a toddler. Make-up didn’t help – in fact make up makes it worse – like some obscene little girl – a pervert’s wet-dream – I started laughing & then I was crying & I couldn’t stop. That’s what started the whole crying thing.
I suppose it’ll grow back in but meanwhile I look like a freak. That’s ok. I feel like a freak.
I had a really good therapist – a resident from UB named Marc – who helped me withdraw from my classes so I don’t fail all of them & I can complete them over the summer or whenever – & two weeks of relative quiet – compared to the dorms – & no partying. I had to go to the AA meeting they had at the hospital – which was OK I guess – I don’t deny that I drink too much but I’m not sure if I’m an alcoholic or if I even have a drinking problem – although I do admit it’s really nice waking up without a hangover. I’m not sure about the Twelve Steps – I don’t know if I’m powerless over alcohol or anything else – although my life is definitely unmanageable – but whose isn’t – & I don’t know how turning my will & my life over to God is going to help me – I grew up Catholic & I’ve been doing that my entire life. In fact, I can tell you right now that God does not care.
The food sucked. Hospital food makes the dorm food seem like gourmet dining in comparison. What I really missed was smoking weed. Eddie told me to deny that I smoke it if they ask about it – which they did. He said it would open a whole ’nother can of worms if I admitted to smoking marijuana so I should just deny doing it. Just say I drink at parties on campus & when I go out & leave it at that. & that I’m distraught over breaking up with my boyfriend. Which is all true.
My mother never came to see me. I guess she was taking Tish to some colleges out west for interviews but still it hurts. Like I don’t matter. The only person who came to visit was Eddie. He came down a bunch of times. He even brought me flowers. He’s a real mensch.
I guess what I really needed was the rest. I was totally exhausted – at the end of my rope with Jon & his games – I couldn’t go on anymore. Marc told me that when I get back to UB, I am going to have to deal with Jon again but I don’t know about that – it’s not like I was ever an actual staff writer on the Spectrum – I just hung out & helped out. So if I don’t go over there – to the Spectrum office – I won’t see him – I won’t have to have to get my heart broken every time I see him. I don’t have to go over to Main Street at all.
But can I stay away?

Eddie went with me to talk to my teachers. He’s in my contemporary poetry class anyway. Our teacher, Mr. Barrett is really cool & says I can have the entire summer to make up the work but if I can get my final paper in by the end of the semester, I don’t have to do anything else at all. I was wow, that’s more than fair. So I am doing a paper on the poems of Mina Loy. I really love her.
My other teachers weren’t as understanding but having Eddie with me really helped. It’s amazing how a guy who has never put the moves on me can be there for me, every step of the way. I call him “Eddie the Angel.” He has long curly hair parted in the middle & big blue eyes & he looks like a Renaissance painting of an angel. He has the best weed I’ve ever smoked. I think that’s really the only reason he’s going to school – to sell weed. I’m so glad I met him.

I was up all night last night – with the radio on – sometimes I’d doze & sometimes I’d be wide awake – looking out the window at the night sky. I didn’t even get fatigued until 2 a.m., which surprised me because I had been up for Easter Mass at 6:30 a.m. Today I didn’t get up until 11 a.m. I’m slightly tired now & I have a bit of a headache. That’s because I need food & more sleep, probably. But I’m getting by.
I’m eating cinnamon toast right now & drinking tea & smoking a joint.

I’ve been thinking about some of the other things I talked about with Marc. He stressed that I had to deal with my feelings of abandonment after the death of my father when I was fifteen – but I don’t know if that’s where the feelings of abandonment stem from – honestly – they could just as easily stem from when I was ten & everything changed. His best-seller & getting his prominent teaching job at Lesley University & buying the dream home on the ocean. I never really thought about it. I guess my sense of abandonment & betrayal was greater at age fifteen because of having to leave Manchester-by-the-Sea & move to the Mistake-on-the-Lake – Cleveland – because my mother just had to remarry almost instantaneously – to her so-called high-school sweetheart – that she met at her reunion the summer before Dad even died – so maybe something was going on there, too. Who knows. All I know is that Dick was the correct name for my step-father & I could have been living in the paradise & he would have ruined it. & it was gorgeous in Gates Mills – all homogenized as fuck – but really beautiful.  Yes, it was beautiful there – but somehow like all civilized places are – everything is dead & nobody even notices it.  Like you’re living in a parallel universe that isn’t even real.  I have always felt more alive on the streets of the city – any city – than in the polished cul-de-sac subdivisions that supposedly is the American dream.  Wildness calls to me – whether it’s in the city or in the country – but the suburbs have pressed out all their wildness like a crisp white shirt to be worn with a business suit.  Water calls to me – wind & sky & rain – & music – music music music – to dance to – I feel so alive when I dance –

I do feel abandoned by Jon – which I said to Marc – but Marc insisted that I clung to Jon – am still clinging to him, emotionally – because of my unresolved feelings of abandonment with my father. “Why did you return to Buffalo?” Marc asked me. “Go to the very university at which your father taught? Where he wrote the book which made him famous?” “I could have gone to Lesley University,” I countered. “I could have gone back to Boston.” “& you could have gone anywhere at all,” he argued.  “I’m sure you were recruited by many fine institutions.”  I sighed.  “I went to UB because my friend Mark Miles was going there & he said it had a good English department.  It really didn’t matter where I went.  I just wanted to get out of the house.  I couldn’t stand my mother’s husband.  & she wasn’t much better, honestly.”


Talking about this with Marc has made me think about my father again. I haven’t thought about him in a long time – maybe because Jon has filled my entire life to the point where I don’t think about anything else. It’s true – people bring up my father to me all the time – when they meet me, they’re like, “You’re Bob McBride’s daughter?” If they didn’t have any interest in me to begin with, usually that one fact will make them interested. & then they will tell me how much they love my father’s books – mostly how they read “The Frustrated Freemartin” & it changed their life – some people bring up his earlier, less-known & less-successful novels, “Birds of a Feather” & “Two O’Clock Blues” – sometimes I think people aren’t interested in me at all but as “Bob McBride’s daughter”. If it wasn’t for that, I would hardly think of him at all – it’s as if the morning I heard he was dead in a car crash, he was wiped from my memory forever. & then all the lurid details – which my mother tried to keep from us kids but of course it was impossible to do so – the fact that he was blind drunk behind the wheel of the car – a car that belonged to the woman in the passenger seat – who was a student of his at Lesley – who was his latest affair – after a long career of such affairs – it’s better not to think of a father like that.
The father I remember used to take me to school with him – we lived on High Park Boulevard near the University in a huge old house – I loved that house. The grand piano in the living room & the giant kitchen in the back opening up to the huge back yard. Helena & Ross were already in day school & my mother was always busy with something or another & must have complained of me being underfoot so he started taking me to classes with him a few days a week so she could have some time off – of course when Tish was born, Mom waited on her like she was the princess royal & with Greg – Rocco – it’s even worse. I do believe I was my father’s favorite – at least for a short time – until he became the darling of the media & was seduced away from the family. So maybe there is a feeling of abandonment.
Perhaps I have been willfully not remembering. When I walk around Main Street Campus. When I take the bus around Buffalo. Do I feel stirrings of the little girl I used to be – holding my father’s hand – walking from the parking lot to his office & then to the classroom, where he gave a lecture on William Shakespeare’s sonnets?  Or his plays?  Was it a comedy or a tragedy?  Or maybe John Donne?  Is that where I learned to love the sound of poetry, of meter & cadence, of the sound of words? I used to fall asleep before the end of the class & I would awake to the sound of feminine voices telling my father what a beautiful child he had & what a good father he was for caring for her while he was working. Not understanding the sexual undercurrents at the time but feeling it.
The trouble is – I can hardly remember what he looks like anymore. When I try to remember – try to hear his voice reading one of Shakespeare’s sonnets – the image I get is Richard Burton. Maybe their voices were similar – at this point, I hardly know. I actually went to the library & looked up one of his books to see his picture on the dust jacket to try to remember who he was. Do you know, he actually looked a bit like Richard Burton? No wonder all the women were crazy about him. Not that Richard Burton was especially handsome but he had something – charisma. Even if he was hideous, with a voice like that, he’d be golden.  Anyone would be.


Last night I talked to Jon. I was so lonely & so stoned so I called him. He had just gotten in from a 4-hour rehearsal with his band & he was stoned too. It was the first time we’d talked in almost a month. He told me all about his band – how hard they’re working – right how they’re doing mostly covers, but they’ve written a few tunes – he went on & on about them. I still believe that Jon & I are meant for each other but if all we are going to be are friends, then I’m OK with that – as hard as it is.


M., one of the d.j.’s at the Q station asked me to be his “date” to the Cheap Trick concert! I am so psyched. It’ll be backstage, the whole 9 yards. I hope there’s lots of coke there! Something that Jon never had & said he didn’t like. Last night he said he thought he could get tickets to the concert & I said I was already going – like, too bad, too sad. If he hadn’t broken up with me, I would never consider going with M. or anyone else. But breaking up was Jon’s idea, not mine & something he worked on for a long time before it happened. I mean, that’s easy to see now.


Elvis Costello is on the radio – “Watching the Detectives”. Before that was Blondie – “Don’t Keep Me Hanging On the Telephone”. Last night I had another dream about Elvis – or was it Jon? I don’t remember details, but it was nice – I have papers & joints & tea & toast all over the place here. I’m trying to finish my work & I’m so behind – this semester has been a total mess with all the problems with Jon. I’ll be so glad when it’s over.


I went to the Spectrum office. It was the first time I had been there in a long time. Jon was there & he was very nice to me. Nice enough to totally disarm me but I wasn’t going to let it happen. I was following up on something Marc had said to me – either let go of the things I had given to Jon or get them back & end it all – but as long as he has things that I consider “mine”, there’s a tie between us that needs to be cut. So I looked him straight in the eye & said, “I want my Rolling Stone magazines back by Friday,” real aggressive, real butch. But I looked real feminine – Harry G. told me I looked “really pretty” – what he said was “Miss Cordelia, you’re looking really pretty today” – & “pretty” isn’t a compliment I usually receive. “Sexy” – “Hot” – even “Beautiful” – but very rarely “pretty”.
Jon was stretching back in his chair, looking me over & I thought – I felt – like a volcano – oh, I want you – it hurt – but I continued smiling & flirting – no more hurt little girl – it’s all tough girl now. I figure – gotta give him something new to fantasize about. I gotta put it on a level where he wants me again. I’m gonna love him a long long time & I’m not giving up. When I fall in love with someone, it’s a total thing – a total commitment. I can’t just shut the feelings off. & I can’t just go out & find someone new. I mean, I can but it won’t work – I won’t be in love with him – I’m still in love with Jon.
Anyway, Jon asked, “Do you have any pot?” & I said, “Yeah.” “Could you spare me a joint?”
I said, “No.” You should have seen his face! He couldn’t believe I said no to him.
“Not even for old time’s sake?”
I laughed. “Fuck old time’s sake, man, why should I give you a joint?” I put on my jacket & left, still laughing. I was half-way down the stairs & I heard: “MacBride!” “Whadaya want?” We met halfway. He said, “I’ll give you a dollar for a joint.”
“Oh geez, you don’t have to do that! I’ll give it to you.”
He was smiling down at me from the landing above. “Are you seeing anyone?” he asked.
“I see lots of guys!” I replied.
“What happened to Eddie?”
“He’s my very best friend & he saved my life but we’re not sleeping together.”
“What – you’ve been celibate?” He was smiling that smile – that smile! I melted –
“Yeah,” I admitted. “I don’t believe you!” he asserted. “Well, fuck you, then!” I answered. Why didn’t I ask him if he was seeing anyone?

The next day.  Thumbing up to Lockport with Eddie – to this motorcycle parts place next to the canal – as usual, he’s looking for parts for his Ducati – & after telling him all about seeing Jon at the Spectrum, I predict that within two weeks, Jon will have made a move for me. Naturally I was drunk when I made that statement. But I wasn’t far off.  Within Twenty-four hours, Jon called. “I’m bringing over your Rolling Stones,” he said. I was so nervous. When he came, he sat on my bed & I looked through the magazines. One was missing. Of course!
He sat there & I sat across from him on my desk chair & he laid back oh so casually & talked – about problems he was having – not caring about life – & I wanted to touch him, hold him – but I was too proud. Too proud! But I had to be – the way he had hurt me. & I had the feeling that he wanted me to reach for him – he wanted me to make a move for him. But I couldn’t do it – I had too much pride. Later, I told Mark Miles about it & he agreed that Jon wanted me but was probably too proud as well. Usually I make the first move – I make it easy for him. I make it easy for everyone. Jon once told me that when we first met, he wanted to kiss me but he was too neurotic to try because he was afraid I’d reject him – so it was a good thing I kissed him first. Oh – it was so nice – that first time – that first kiss – I remember it so well – how I wish I could be kissing him again – the first time –

On Friday was Springfest, but I missed most of it. I showed up around 4 & I was flirting with Dave M. & John Frederic & then I turned around & there was Jon. It seems like we’re drawn together – I always see him – it’s like I feel him before I see him. & he smiled at me & we talked – I laughed a lot but I was trembling – I guess I was laughing to try to cover up my trembling – I wanted to show that I was just fine without him. But I’m not!
I planned to meet John Frederic at the dance that night, but first I went to J.W.’s house & did bong hits with J.W., Rob J. & Dave M. & watched the hockey game. They’ve all graduated & have writing jobs – J.W. writes for the Courier Express, Rob J.writes for the Buffalo Evening News & Dave M. writes press releases for the Buffalo Bisens for the AP Wire service. I had been drinking & I was very horny & I came onto Dave M. – the first aggressive sexual move I’ve made in almost a year – except for Jon – I felt powerful & good for once. He gave me a kiss that meant thanks for the compliment but I’m not into it. Then I was so depressed I skipped the dance & thumbed home – although John Frederic would’ve cheered me up & so would have the music. I was so depressed I wasn’t thinking right. I thumbed home at 2 a.m. & luckily I was picked up by a guy who lives on the third floor, so I wasn’t with strangers. Although sometimes I think I’m treated better by strangers than by people who know me. On Saturday night, I walked to 7-11 on Millersport Highway & bought two 6-packs of Labatt’s Blue & drank 8 of them walking back to the dorm. I was quite drunk. There was a cop on the floor – he was there cuz someone broke a window & he seemed to like the look of me & he let me know it. We flirted until I got bored. I went into my room & fell into a deep sleep.
Pretty soon I’ll be on my way to the Cheap Trick concert – & M. But I really want to be with Jon before then. I feel like a virgin. I haven’t had sex in over a month. Not since the beginning of March. I don’t even know if I can have sex. I mean, all I want is Jon. I don’t know what to do. Force myself to do it, I guess. But maybe it won’t even be an issue. Who knows.