Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Epistle. To: Mercy Hunt

It was like two o'clock in the morning when I was startled awake. It was an old feeling and that shook the sleep from my head and started to thread needle points into my spine. I recognized it like some nasty troll come back from the dark territories looking for some place to intimidate and I regretted immediately having the nerve endings to see it and to internalize it. The room was crowded. I was stark naked alone but everything else was there squatting on my head.  Can't lie still. Can't run away. Can't tell the truth and can't tell a lie. Can't do anything quiet. Except fall.  Fall and twist through overheated synapses that pressurize on contact and build beyond control. Need Escape would be an apt here. Get me out is all your brain can shout but it was too late for that.  I was having a dream. I had to dive underneath the water. I had to fetch something down there or to meet someone below the surface. And before I knew it - wham - there was electricity running through me like I was a wire.  I limped outside and ran my eyes against the stars. Overhead the night sky was beautiful and catching and took you away to beautiful ends the way it does and overlays you in the drunken asides of songs. Down below however there was a different equal sign. Do you try and convince yourself hey this is all just in my head? When what's happening amounts to your body being squeezed and atomized and you think wait a minute I'm disappearing? Perhaps my greatest fear would be losing a sense of humor that I've had since birth. If I can't laugh then  I can't be serious. And it's not for a lack of maintenance! I could sit on the back porch forever. Like some exercise in extreme sitting and watch the world turn and go away and have it not miss me as though there was the sky and this was the face of a mountain. But I like to participate. I like to be somewhere. I like to have attention. Even if desires lose out to a moment in time - and what you have is all this shit surrounded by futility - ah the fucking life of it! - the point as I was seeing it last night was this total freaky moment. How do you pull back from something that's in your head but is not necessarily your thoughts? And I had this weird image sitting on the porch. It was a calculation. Which in itself was strange. But here it is. There are only fourteen weekends in a summer... Now whose idea was that? And those weekends go fast. So fast enough you're scared if you look at them squarely.  

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Epistle. To: Wolstonecraft

Thanks. Despite what you warn me about about -  the cumbersome shell of the heart - what more can I do? I let fantasies of liberation get to me and the more I want the more there is to want till it becomes a kind of game. The little voice in the back of my head says be content with the way things are. The weird voice in the back of my head says what happens when the clock starts winding and then you lose out? I joke with the nurse about moving in together. She's here so often we could be a unit. But she doesn't see it that way other than me mentioning it and she thinking it a joke. But we're already kind of dating I said to her. Dating she said? What dating? Well we've gone to the movies I said and we've gone out to stores to buy things. And that's your definition of dating she said? No I said it's not like a definition. What then she said? More like a distraction I said. I like the look in your eyes, the way it can suddenly make me forget what day it is. She trained those queen sized lids on me and said that's nice but I'm not an escape plan. And I said but I don't want to come up empty. Who wants to settle for only the concept? Things should just materialize. That would be cool she said. Like a perpetuating mystery box don't you think I said? So she said, adjusting the bleach solution in the syringe as she prepared to change a bandage, let's suppose you were hungry and wanted a meal. Am I the hot dog? Or am I the grill?  Maybe dating is the wrong way to put it I said. So what is it she said? I thought about it. Hot dogs are about the easiest things to cook she said. She was right. Hot dogs were fucking simple. I then had a flash - as I got a needle full of that bleach solution straight into an open gash in my sternum - die bacteria die! - that not only are we just made from parts and leftovers that some process in life deemed us to be but there's also a world where you try and balance loneliness and companionship as though they were the the twin motors of the daily forage outward and back. If I were displaced in a song that would be a comfort. But I am not. I can't believe it fully or at least I fool myself into thinking that way but, really, you do have to ask, what purpose did dying serve? Time to begin again? And so as what? Another repository for aches and pains? A time sink that gathers information over the years and as a consequence gives out advice? And what's the answer to dating someone? How do you do that or not and come away so everyone feels clean? And so I continued and said to the nurse while it may seem at these unfortunate times that life as we know it is an action calamity squeezed between something like an endurance of a faith in breathing and a grudge match to simply and purposely hold on wouldn't you like to imagine we could be the stopper in the excess that totally wears us down? The nurse looked at me and packed some freshly opened gauze into the hole but didn't say anything. Why keep it dull I said? But she kept looking at me. She was like someone who went to a party in a good mood and would never allow all those otherwise bridges of language - like drunks yelling over the music -  or the fabled sweet nothings of sex come ons in her ears - to tie herself up in the head contrary-wise. She was able to look into the future about herself. And be clear. She was like cicadas calling out beneath a hot summer air that one day the whole air changes when you hear it but also you understand it's been that way for a very long time. And that was scary in the sense because you could count on it. It was also I'm afraid to admit way alluring. I'm trying to develop desirable points of view. If I have another life to live and if death has graced me that way then I want in. But I don't know if it's too late. And so I said I walked over to the park this afternoon. No she said you didn't. Her expression changed and she shook her big sad eyes across my face. No I said sensing her disappointment it wasn't like that at all. I need to get out I said. I found no trouble. I did nothing wrong. Try and see this I said. Paddle boards like the latest fad were out on the lake in clumsy happy numbers all nervous and almost experimental and looking stupid for lack of skills with people falling off them and getting back on board beneath a sterling light hitting the water. Soccer balls skimmed across the grass like they do each weekend in a pick up game and people on the sidelines shouted and had fried chicken and clandestine cold beer. Young bodies in bathing suits that fit them like stars exploding in desperate time were stretched out on the rocks soaking up the cancer and vitamin D in the sun. Mindless hedonistic and turned on from old reptile dreams. And I guess being in the surroundings indicates an involvement whether it's here or nothing else. I had all the pills I needed to elevate the mood and yes I did grab a beer from a chummy soccer fan. And somewhere between the soccer game played back and forth on the ground and the water played into the coves on small hot winds I yelled hey check it out I'm back from back from the dead! What more was there to want? A fucking tax credit for being alive? I see it the nurse said. The seven o'clock bells rang out upon the evening. Some rain last night but the garden needed it. The lilies have gone away for the year and just that alone to think about, the way you might lose a quality, marks a calender as subjective and makes you wonder where the damage is. But the brown eyes have muscle now in the space cleared by the lilies. It's a plan like that. All I did was plant it in motion and waited to see what happened. Do you like bonfire parties the nurse asked?  

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Epistle. To: Wollstonecraft

My horoscope said -  you must outwit the riddle. Not solve the riddle. But outwit it. And that's catchy but where does it leave you?  Are you still at it? Did you still play both sides? Maybe in the heart of things you might redo my chart? As for things now I'm escaping a bad night outside. It's raining and blowing against the windows in downpours and knots of wind pound against the house like something large and simplified trying to crash through the walls. I'm hiding on the inside in a dimmed room with a single lamp burning like some old torch lit up in the halls of darkness. It's late and I have a familiar feeling. Where you can't fall asleep for trying so you try and bother someone else and try and talk to them. Where you stay marginally awake at a loss until early morning and as you're about to fall asleep in the early morning you stop and you say to yourself wait a minute don't I usually wake up in the early morning? Thunder rolls across the skylights shaking dust off the blinds. Lightening flashes ride the clouds in herds of electricity. Everything lets go with a storm. Don't you think? The way the world sometimes appears to look back at you. Sometimes it's all so great and you feel so alive that you must fail, correct errors, repeat the process to ensure your feet are still lovingly planted above ground. Sometimes you look into the night sky and what you find staring back is ridicule. Like a vast silence telling in credits but no dialogue - hey yo you be small. Do you think the world has a brain? I mean a collective one. I guess it's like breathing. A bunch of thoughts gathered up and let loose like a manner of sorts plotting on how to get even. Each day I try and extend my reach. I try to walk further. The punch list that's never complete! But when I look out the window I'm faced with geometries of memory and what those sensations are and how they run deeper than just filling in the hours. You were important. Perhaps you still are. All that spook work you did must have made you some enemies worth nothing. Remember how that president's wife would never let the president even take a nap without looking at the chart? Central America? Banking deregulation? The hot line to Russia? Nothing happened higher up like that without first consulting the charts that you built on the stars. And so, are you hiding tonight? We're not the same. We never were. I was a fool and you never were. Maybe I'm just scared and would like someone else to take up the job and be afraid for me. (!) I just finished reading a post by some guy who's taking a year off to bicycle around, in order to have a "radically local life." I just saw Jane Eyre with the nurse. Tell me your tale of woe Rochester asked her. Woe she replied? Sir she said, I have no tale of woe. Ah Miss Eyre, Rochester said, behind a smokescreen of cigar rising in his face and a tumbler glass of shadowy alcohol brought to his lips, we all have a tale of woe. I try but suddenly the whole thing goes off into the past and I feel stupid looking at it like I've been left behind. Should I just leave the deal alone? How's that possible though? The way we're made inside. If it's written in the stars?  And this is more complex than I ever gave it credit for being. I guess I'm not sure what I should do - so when you tell me I have extra DNA to scatter about what does that mean? The hospital mechanics want to put me back together - but even if they get on with their best laid plans of mice and men - I will never be the same. Who would I be - I mean who can I be - if I don't have my old body to live within? It's an attraction for sure. The whole body thing. I remember I always felt safe when we talked about things walking around together after school. I remember setting a book on your thigh and I remember you picking up that book and hitting me with it broadside across my head. I remember how it was your face would change and shift by how long or short the daylight was falling on your face. At times it was soft and craving. Other times it was cut wicked and angular and seemed to have it all and what that said was don't ask for more. Ah. But is this just me? Or the wind and the rain. Or the moon that isn't there.

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