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Author Archives: L.J.T.

About Practical Blasphemy

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“Practical Blasphemy: The New Testament” illustrates that which countless psychology books and autobiographies have failed to convey about mental illness. It will be released by the Brooklyn-based publishing house ANTIBOOKCLUB in the Spring of 2018. Based on a first-hand account of psychosis and hospitalization, it is no mere memoir. It is both a love letter to the tormented and a hate psalm. It is the first of its kind. LJT exposes in detail the reality of psychosis, the horror of suicide, and the effects of psychopharmaceuticals.

Protagonist Amelia Adams is a young woman who hallucinates music continuously. Along with voices and darker things in her head, she is constantly bombarded with unwanted thoughts. She decides to take her own life. “Practical Blasphemy: The New Testament” begins on that day. The book includes her suicide attempt and subsequent hospitalization, treatment, fellow patients, and both real and delusional experiences. When Amelia begins medication, the writer’s style changes along with her thinking process. This accurate portrayal of the effects of psychopharmaceuticals enlightens the reader and the protagonist. “Practical Blasphemy” is unconventional and shocking at times, but it is a crucial instrument in helping the psychiatric community and general public understand the realities of severe mental illness.

Contact the author with questions or concerns, below.

 

 

Summer

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Another season of sadness
leaves behind a crispy exoskeleton.
Empty yellowed aphid shell
pale and clinging;
leaving me wondering
just how that crunchy little bug
escaped.

My childhood summers were Hell-Floridian long;
spent hunting down ghosts
in the back of my school playground where only 5th graders went
(unless they were sca-red).
From April to October we
robbed from caterpillars,
spun bracelets from thick milky webs,
fearlessly climbed the tire wall-
even when the tires were full of water
(even when she slipped and broke her arm)
((even when some kid got ringworm in May)).

Little did we know
that you can’t really play Sardines with only two people,
that Hide-and-Go-Get is a game for both genders,
that there is a name for girls kissing girls.

And later,
when being born backwards began to affect me more,
my summers were spent
burning and praying.

Then taking opiates.

But spent.
Gratefully spent, and then left behind
or so I thought because apparently it clings to the bark with its foot fur Velcro hooks
for fucking ever.

Fall- appropriate
and humanely conducive to long sleeves,
will distract me with a kinder form of death.
Then the beloved soup season;
dark and Rising and magical,
and one-hundred and fifty calories a can.

It is the eruption of green-hot;
the so-called new beginning
the so-called second chance
the so-called fresh start
that never fails to reveal,
always,
a shell.

And it waits for me like a tomb.

The Old Rugged Cross

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quiet cross.
peaceful cross.
Serenely gazing down
upon happy,
fortunate faces.

It tells all of the beauty,
the pride,
the blessing of a gentle life under its wings;
and none of the fire shit intestinal vomit drenched
torture
your limbs will endure hanging on it
left to die
with only a vague hope
that as the doves peck out your entrails
and feast on your delicate eyeballs,
you will be rewarded.

no one can see the Body.
only the cross.

Red Georgia Clay

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The golden mornings and silver sunsets
bleed into a sepia sort of evening,
where memories stain like photographs-
crisp and colorless.

Waiting from the waist up
for the Atlantic to drag us to the shore
with board rash and jellyfish stings
and sun-bleached smiles,
the air curled with wet/hot
and a hint of stupid.
Longboards drip in my garage
smelling of dust and salty sex wax,
hiding our waterproof lighters for the ankle-high days
(which were both and so were we).
MAR-I-JUANA.

Shelby’s, Sandpiper’s, and Sticky Fingers
all steamed with coffee and jazz
as I attempted apartment pool suicide.
Cinemagraphic spotlight swim-
tinged blue,
ringed with palm trees,
and lustfully warm.
I wanted to sink like Ophelia,
suffocate with the stars,
fill my pockets with stones and take a walk with Virginia.
My bodyfat would’ve done it, alone,
but pile on the surf,
the drugs,
the collective, constant sigh of a city at peace with itself,
and every individual grain of sand from St. Simon’s to the Keys
and I should’ve rotted in my own nostalgia three years ago.
Instead, my feet touched concrete
(because everything has a bottom).

Bury me in red Georgia clay.
Smear me baseball diamond orange
and dump me off the 10th Street pier
to dissolve like rock salt
in the same blue-grey as my lover’s eyes because I can not go on.
I cannot go away, I cannot go “home” I cannot GO.

The Sears Tower won’t kill me.
Nor will the Brown Line, the winter, or the Lake
(though you should keep an eye on those bacteria levels).
It is the gravity
of that gentle, quiet tomb
that will ultimately be my end.
Not the gulls, or sand fleas, or the ocean itself,
but the longing;
the loss of that lodestar.

Spin me,
Pull me,
Staple The Awakening to my skin.
Let my blood.
Let it sting.
Let me sink.
But, please,
Let it be bottomless.

To the Woman Who Sits on the Beach Every Day at Two and Drinks Beer

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The old woman’s hands
brown and spotted
like the sugared crackling on a ham
crackeling
cracking
split and peel off in little flakes
like roofing shingles sliding into the emptiness
a noise unto themselves
like the gentle shushing of the sky to the leaves

dried and dead in the curb corner
along with roadside-grilled worm carcasses.
The lowly, sun-worshipping creature
fried and flattened
neatly dried into a crisp, brittle coil
under my feet.

The old woman’s hands
(SPF protection-less)
bake Rotisserie-style
as the Ant-God
my Gaud;
the great gaping cake-hole of civilization,
smiles from above.

Jesse

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My sweet-breath flower boy-
mushroom tender
thing-bearer;
Flour boy
with shattered saucer eyes,
putting silent somatic smile sparks
on the kisses of my cheekbones.
He cradles
me in my dark iron swaddling,
reminds me that there’s more to life
than being born in Dallas,
and will never, EVER let on
that I pluck my bellybutton hair.

He is
Christ
Prometheus
philanthropist martyr
who will raise his own sails
using the ropes that bind me to this
skin cell teal table.
He is
Spirit sex
Soul touching
licking my wounds for me,
gaining nothing but the sharp,
stigmata stains slashing at his watercolor skin.

My pale-faced white friend
who always bites the hand that
feeds-strokes-rapes
him and now me.
and it’s that delicate tea set
China-fragile hand debt that flitters
Over my retinas when a man says
“Shhh.”
Kind, gentle trash-pollen boy who
knows so much of what it means to
be a man that the negative
connotations of the title
INSULT him.

I am sorry
that he bakes and blossoms,
but if he gave in to the
oven summer sun parch,
I would wilt, as well.
I am not sorry
For the flexi-bone calcium bend
I can see through his shell,
because my boi flies and crushes
in an absinthe finger song;
pen-string-squeeze
like a Tricky Tori Trip-Hop bird,
Storm smiling.

Gratefulness
rises in me like bubbles in Liquid glass-blood,
kiln-killed,
sticky scorched,
and I would rather boil alive
than have skin.

Green

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At about the same time my eyes changed color,
something snapped in me like a glow stick.
‘Non-Toxic’ only means
not poisonous enough to kill you
(everything in moderation).
I wear sunglasses to cut the glare,
ashamed of the lime light,
so that others may be able to look at me in my neon-oddness.

Everything I’ve ever done is invalid
because I see through lizard’s blood and Miller Time.
How does one go about creating art
when you cannot see out of your own electro-shock eyes?

I am blind like God is blind-
grandiose and perpetually flinching;
rubbing with our wet, red fists
to get the blood out.

And when that light dies- a slow fade
behind the black blood-crust,
I will be grateful to have been so hidden
so muted,
so secretly bright
that I could have lit up the whole world with a blink,
and then extinguished it with a tear.