these texts are an archive of my life in the San Francisco Bay Area from march 2007 - march 2015. it stands as a record of close to a decade of my life, charting the struggles i faced as an artist, daughter, and lover. messy and chaotic at times, eloquent and poetic at others, these texts are an index i am proud of. it was here in this electric box that i learned how to be honest about my experiences and the person i needed to become. it was here that i first learned the truism that words make the world and how to trust such a beautiful, rife, hard fact.

thank you for meeting me here in such tall grass.

my artist website is here.

May 8, 2010


it is 10:30 on a saturday night. my sweetheart is in bed. i just finished reading The Land of Green Plums by Herta Muller. and from the first sentence of the book, she got her hook in deep. at times, her prose so dazzling and painful, i had to put it down. and not just the heart ache of it. not just the documentation she has lay down. but the honest expression, so direct and beautiful, that eventually led my thought of "oh, what writing!" to "oh, what reading!"

that this book was even in my hands is such a gift. that the freedom for it to arrive here in my home, to be read, to be experienced, to be handled and smelled and wrestled with is a gift. the book chronicles the state's deadly hand reaching toward poets and artists and thinkers and dreamers. young people, in love with ideas and going to college in eastern Europe shortly after World War II. it spells out, in such heart breaking, despairing, but completely unsentimental language, how dangerous ideas are seen to be in times of political fear...

that by simply having read a poem, one becomes marked.

and of course, by the time i got to the end of the book, my paranoia was showing- oh shit. i bought this on amazon. i felt much the way i felt 11 years ago when i first read 1984. i was 18 and in my first semester in college and with every page i turned i thought my god, it's already happening. but the small conspiracy theorist inside me is pretty quiet these days. i no longer get so worked up about these things. i guess i just felt so profoundly blessed that freedom of speech is still protected in this country... that i can own a book and not worry that simply by owning it, i am some how an enemy, that i can love ideas without shame and read as widely as i want to and never have to fear that someone will pound on my door and come get me all for having read a book.

it's no wonder to me at all that this work won the Nobel Prize. not only is it written in such a rich and gorgeous speech, it is necessary. more important than i can say. an act of witnessing. beyond reproach. out of everyones league.


Elisabeth said...

Hi Angela. I think we must work hard not to get too paranoid about the fact of reading and writing on line.

I know there are times when I worry and imagine that just for writing and stating my thoughts publicly on line I shall be thrown into jail.

It's a dangerous way to think. It can stifle our best endeavours.

I have not yet read this book but I read Jim Murdoch's wonderful review of Herta Muller, see

If you haven't seen his blog yet, it's a terrific one to follow and Jim is a poet, writer and a fantastic conversationalist on all things literary. I think you'd enjoy him.

Radish King said...

that book changed me too, angela. profoundly. it made me want to be a better writer.

angela simione said...

thanks, elisabeth! i will definitely check out his blog! herta muller is an amazing writer. amazing. i highly recommend this book.

and i agree with you... just write and worry about the fall-out later. i'm working on getting my bravery up to where it needs to be. ;)

angela simione said...

rebecca- yes. it is hands down one of the best things i've ever read. ever ever ever. and there's so much to learn from her... about line and courage and how to be direct and eloquent at the same time.

but i happen to think you're a fucking powerhouse too. thank you for recommending this book and for all the work you do. :)