SETTING: Landon’s apartment. The aesthetic in this apartment is minimalist There are no stray things around. There is a very expensive looking sculpture. Landon has a very simple geometric painting. There is a glass coffee table at the center and really sparse furniture. CHLOE is at the door ready to knock. LANDON is in an expensive jog suit and on his laptop writing a business negotiation.
CHLOE knocks tentatively on LANDON’s door, Landon looks through his smallish peephole, sighs deeply, plasters a forced smile on his face and opens the door.
LANDON: Chloe, hi! To what do I owe the pleasure of having my little sister come over here unannounced. Do you want a drink ?
CHLOE: (goes to sit down slowly on the expensive chair) No…uhh..I wouldn’t have come over if I didn’t think it was important.
LANDON: Well, you know, you could always send me a text or call me.
CHLOE: You never answer your phone or reply to my texts. Besides, this is really important.
LANDON: Well, you know, I’m a busy guy. You could have a little more consider-
CHLOE gets frustrated and yells.
CHLOE: It’s about dad!
LANDON: Jesus! You’re on that business again. I thought I had already made it clear to you what needs to be done.
CHLOE: No,you didn’t. You’ve skirted around the issue without resolving anything.
LANDON: What is there to resolve? He seems okay living by himself.
CHLOE: You only see him once a month at the most . He’s struggling and doesn’t want to admit it. He’s not only holding on to mom’s old stuff but is accumulating new stuff as a way to deal with his grief. And to make matters worse, the landlord is about to put him out. We need to reason with him.
LANDON: How is the landlord going to put him out ? I give the old biddy a little something extra so she doesn’t bother him.
CHLOE: You don’t understand.It’s not about money, they want him out because dad has basically made the place a hazard. We need to help dad.
LANDON: And what is your suggestion. Einstein?
CHLOE: Well, you know, he could always move in with you.
LANDON: Like hell he can. Listen, I got a better suggestion. I put up the money, you make all the arrangements and we put him in one of those assisted living places. He’ll be surrounded by –
CHLOE: Are you nuts? A nursing home because you don’t want your life inconvenience
LANDON: I don’t see what’s so bad—
CHLOE: It will kill him! He will hate it. You can’t always just throw money at every fucking problem. You are such a selfish jerk.
LANDON: And you are a mindless little idiot. Are you done now?
CHLOE: (feeling rather defeated and sighs) Will you at least come with me to reason with him. He won’t listen to me but at least he will listen to you, his favorite child.
LANDON: Sure. I need to see when I’m free. Maybe next week, I could pencil something—
CHLOE: God damnit! Don’t you understand that the situation is urgent? He could be out on the street by the end of the week.
LANDON: Must you always be such a drama queen?
CHLOE: Ugh..there no use talking to you (Chloe mutters under breath, you just don’t fucking care)
LANDON: What did you say?
LANDON: Fine, I’ll go with you this Wednesday afternoon.
cada cuarto está lleno con la nostalgia de ti la sala donde miramos películas de Almodóvar la cocina donde me hacías el cafe pensé que siempre estarías aquí peleando conmigo, criando nuestro hijos nunca pensé que el universo tendría otros planes y que el cielo necesitaría otro ángel
I wrote this in January of 2022 when I was depressed.
I welcome death to take me away tonight- death must be better than the anger that has made an eternal home in me death must feel better than this emptiness that lies in my heart death has to be better than this sorrow that floods my pillow with tears continuously death would be better than my emotions that threaten to consume me
I wrote this in December 2018 when my husband forgot our 8 year anniversary. Iguess I was a little salty and kind of still processing the breakup of our marriage.
He forgot our 8 year anniversary I didn’t remind him because it didn’t really matter. Hopefully, this time next year, we will be divorced. There was no use in feeling sad or spilling tears Over something that would end soon. There was no use in feeling devastated over Something that never should have happened. Vows that should never have been taken. Promises of love that were doomed from the beginning. Empty words that were never believed in. 8 years of marriage; an institution we thought would bind us for eternal life. So that maybe the sting of resentment and neglect wouldn’t break us apart. He forgot our 8 year anniversary Just like he forgot all of his promises to “Try harder” or “to change” So I wouldn’t leave. He forgot our 8 year anniversary. And it’s fine. You don’t celebrate something That is already dead.
So I had forgotten to post this poem from the great breakup of 2001.
I guess it was fate For you to cross that thin line Between love and hate You were really a waste of time Now you’ll never know How good you and me could’ve been Or how much I really loved you so But your love was only a smoke screen I even thought we had forever because I wanted to believe you were true but I guess you were another whatever and I was another one you’d screw Now there’s nothing left to say and it’s time to forget everything
I wrote this in 2017 during my great depression. I guess I was just annoyed and angry by society.
Simple decency is becoming extinct Manners and politeness is rare rudeness and sarcasm is the norm Being kind feels outdated in this narcissistic society filled with superfluous and superficial people Who bring their harsh and shallow attitudes everywhere There is no escape from this epidemic of the nothingness that tries to appear profound It is a society that blames the victim “ but what was she wearing?” or “He was hanging out with the wrong kids” It is a society that’s prejudiced against anyone different “Go back to where you came from” “You’ll never belong here” “People will always remember how you made them feel”, Maya Angelou said Unnecessary, weak, aloof, isolated alone Is how this world makes me feel I’m a FAILURE trying to accommodate myself to this world full of shallow feelings I miss the kind and real people in this world It’s rare to find them now They are almost extinct
Faulkner wrote about her ancestors She stood like a pillar of strength between her mother and daughter She stood strong as both of them held her arms that were their life jackets as they drowned in endless sorrows Tears silently fell from her face as her father laid in his closed home And the reverend went on about him being in a better place And her strength did not falter, She let her loved ones hold on tight while she tried to blink away tears , She swallowed her pain and absorbed the pain from those around her She wasn’t just strong for her mother and daughter, but she was a goddess of strength among the mere mortals around her that wept
C.E Hoffman’s chapbook collection Blood, Booze and Other Things in Nature is definitely a must read if you like your poetry vulnerable and thought provoking . This collection is raw and in your face and doesn’t shy away from telling you the harsh truth about the world but the poet does in a way that’s witty and full of dark humor. The poet addresses complex issues of mental health, love, sex, parenthood, and poverty. They address the inequalities that hit you in the gut and make you question the status quo.. I’ve never read a poetry collection like this before. I’ll talk about 4 poems from the book that I really liked. Their poetry feels like thoughts I’ve had that I have been too afraid to write down; much less share with the world.
The first poem is “Bloom (Blow Job) “and I really liked how this poem transitioned from giving a blowjob to other things in the poet’s life. I interpreted as things to talk about or are talked about after a blowjob. The line in this poem that really resonated with me was “you wipe spit from your cheek when/your lover says it was the hardest they came in their life, and/you believe them “(Hoffman). I’ve had this said to me quite a few times and my friend has as well. It’s a common line that men say to their partners/flings. Yes, MEN, we do talk about these things.
Another poem that resonated with me was “Magnificent Shits” in which the poet talks about how they imagine their unborn child to be like and how much they already love them . I resonated with this poem because as a parent myself, I’ve had similar thoughts. I resonated with the lines, “But no matter where you go/forever drives your soul/YOU ARE A MASTERPIECE that shits and smiles and needs and creates and kisses/explores and speeds “(Hoffman). These capture that feeling of loving your child and acknowledging their humanness.
Another poem I really liked from this collection is “Prenatal Yoga aka Relearning Breath”. It deals with complex issues of “passing” and even deals with the poet dealing with privilege. The line that I really liked from this poem was, “And I know it’s strange to find peace in a space of appropriation/’cause 8 outta 9 of our faces are white/ so when it comes to “passing”/ I really can’t talk, can I? “(Hoffman) As a woman of color who’s spent most of her time in predominantly white spaces, I understand this sentiment of feeling like an “other” or “out of place”. Often at times, I try to blend in and 9 out of 10 times, I am able to without incident. However, there is that 10 % where I feel uncomfortable because something unintentionally prejudiced is said or a wrong assumption is made about me.
New Moon in Cancer (Radical Honesty 101) was my favorite poem in this book. I interpreted this poem as the anxiety of the poet written in verse. I loved how honest Hoffman is in addressing everything that goes through their mind openly talking about their mental health, relationships, and what it’s like to be a writer in today’s environment of instagram, twitter, etc. One of my favorite lines from this poem was, “I don’t believe in The One./I’ve initiated most of my break-ups, cheated on basically/even in open relationships-/Shit. Maybe I just suck at this.” )Hoffman. I feel like Hoffman basically describes almost all of my romantic relationships and the thoughts I have about that part of my life. Examining and deconstructing my relationships this past year, I’ve often thought, “man, maybe I just suck at this, let me quit while I haven’t slashed anyone’s tires yet”(haha). The other line that I really liked from this poem was “Honestly I’m sick of wanting to get better, dying to be better, trying to do better than whatever I am or can” (Hoffman). Being in this recovery journey from my BPD feels like that sometimes. I have a strict routine I adhere to, read so many books about BPD, monitor my moods and honestly, it gets tiresome at times. Like Hoffman, I get sick of trying to “be better” and I often wonder when I can stop being so vigilant and rigid in everything I do. When can I say I’m finally better and can stop doing so much?
Blood, Booze, and other things in Nature is definitely the poetry collection for you if you’ve ever felt like a pariah, like an outcast, like an outsider in this world that tries to tone you down for being too crazy, too loud, and too bizarre for it. Reading this poetry collection is the medicine you need for that beautiful and chaotic soul of yours that refuses to conform to the norms and expectations of normalcy in this patriarchal society.
Below is a link to the book:
Don’t believe me? Here are other testimonials about the book and the author:
Praise for Blood, Booze, and Other Things in Nature:
This book resonates with anyone who’s ever called a crisis line and had them respond, “Oh wow that’s a lot.” This chapbook isn’t a cocktail. It’s a shot.
This is no nipple-slip, no wardrobe malfunction. This is deliberate, personal exposure, revealing heart, head, and the wounds of living. The battle songs, the laments, and the healing gather here.
-Neil S Reddy
This collection is a dirty meditation, a longing for escape, an ecstatic fuck you to the traps and ties of societal expectation. A delightful, messy romp through the entrails of the heart.
This is the kind of writing that inspires fandom.
-Alexandine Ogundimu, Filth Magazine
Praise for C E Hoffman:
C E Hoffman is a fearless writer.
-Jack Wang, author of We Two Alone and winner of the Danuta Gleed Literary Award
The human spirit remains fresh-voiced, optimistic and youthful in Hoffman’s imaginative writing.
-Martin Millar, author of Lonely Werewolf Girl and winner of the World Fantasy Award
Hoffman’s writing style reminds one of Burroughs at his most straightforward or Irvine Welsh at his strangest, but with a presentation dominated primarily by women and queer characters- a refreshing change in this particular milieu.…Hoffman is definitely a writer to watch for, and I look forward to what they give us next.