Sunday, November 22, 2009
Rewind two years to a photo my me smiling blindly, still at that time unkempt and wild looking, no more than 2 feet away from the camera. A friend is there with me. We look happier than I've felt since all of these things turned to memories. What were we feeling that night? Why do both of our smiles show such absolute purity in this one brief moment, and why do I not have the ability to reconnect?
I'll never forget travelling across the country in a van communicating with a stranger whom I had kissed once at that point, and would not see again for a month. Never again have I so interested another human being. Never again have I both been so encapsulated, and felt so adored by another person.
What's changed? Was it the drugs? Am I ill? Is this what growing up's supposed to be? It feels more like growing backwards. Communication is not so easy as it was once. I think I was outgoing once. For the life of me, I can't remember why.
Tuesday, November 17, 2009
He mostly stood and watched me; but he stood well and statuesque and, framed by the sun at its highest point, discoursed in a homely, but uniquely eloquent vernacular on his favorite topic: women. "To me it's all about the morning after," - looking up at two turkeybuzzards circling the pasture beyond the barn - "they gotta shine in the morning." He spoke of golden down, tawny hairs that cover them all over, like stretching fields of wheat that captivate and affront the sun's morning light with their brilliance. This, he said through azure exhales (in an excusable moment of ignorance to the malicious truth of the vast, spinning world around him), was the closest a grown man could get to the amazing agony he once felt as a young boy just discovering the "differences between her and me."
And just as he had picked up his sledge to get back to work, the new and shiny black truck of the old man's pulled up; something heated and static buzzing in the old man's aspect. "Why the hell ain't you limpin' then?" he asked me after the incident had been divulged. I looked down at my hands, tightly sheathed by my father's old, ever-shrinking, once-light-tan-now-dark-brown, suede work gloves, and saw that all but two fingers (both pinkies) poked through holes worn in them long before my palms were ever callused with labor; my toes throbbed with a secret pain. "Cuz both feet're sore and it won't do no good to favor one more'n the other." Staring down at the moribund purple pressing its ghastly face against the window of my left big toenail, the old man arrived at a decision: "Sammy, take the rest the day off'n go'won inta town and git that boy some goddamn work boots." The old man scribbled his name at the bottom of a check and handed it to him: "Take my truck if ya want, but git back here 'fore too long: Rita's cookin' venison fer supper."
Monday, November 16, 2009
Its fingernails are not so refined”
Said the sad-eyed lady in the train station
They seemed to be trying to say something more,
But it couldn’t be read.
She had learned how to lie, even through her eyes.
The autumn breeze almost takes me away some days
When all the leaves
Have left the trees
And their stark silhouettes,
Like un-stuffed scarecrows,
Ward off unwelcome visitors.
Like useless appendages,
The branches reach up to the heavens -
Calling for god to reign down his mercy.
To take pity on their lengthy, inert existence,
To take pity on this town.
Dear God, please bless
Those of us about to rest
The ones who sleep beneath the trees
Who, like their stark ancestors,
Have never had the chance to leave.
The sad eyed lady sat on her train
Meticulously manicuring her nails.
Alone she could not lie to herself,
Her eyes struggled to focus on her cuticles
She couldn’t remove the dirt beneath them.
She never would.
And it would stick with her, like a bad hangover,
Clinging desperately lost past it’s due.
And she would learn to live with it,
Care for it,
And nurture it,
In the dirt she would learn to plant a garden,
Sunday, November 15, 2009
everyone's a snapshot, a thumbnail grown in proportion. i never know where i am, just who i'm with. i've escaped having a home for long enough, it seems; it's time to settle myself but not to settle for any other reason.
i keep it all in my mind, each thought placed in a hazy folder, full of life and the death that i once played with.
Saturday, November 14, 2009
Sunday, November 8, 2009
Craig was looking for a quick place to wait for the strange spell of summer rain to subside when he decided to duck into a magazine shop that he passed on
Craig was still in college, he was visiting Olivia in the city during her internship. She was going to be a big shot photographer for the magazines and he was going to be an important writer for them. They were the perfect team in every sense. They each were so young and full of passion, it was boiling out of them. They were both young enough to still feel like they had purpose and they thought they could see it in each other. They were running through the streets of
Then they wouldn’t speak, they would sit opposite the other, intensely reading and looking at the photographs. It was as if they were studying. They read articles and articles and articles in complete silence, each maybe cracking a half smile, or exchanging the slightest of glances to subtly let the other know they had just liked a line they had read or really approved of a photograph they had seen. Occasionally the silence would be broken for Craig or Olivia to tell the other about an article they thought the other would like…but only if they thought the other would like it. Neither would break to share something they merely thought was interesting, for all the articles they read they thought were interesting, that’s why they read them, that was the beauty of magazines. Not only were they specialized already, but you didn’t need to waste your time reading something you didn’t like, you could just invest in what you wanted to. They knew each other well, and would share articles on what the thought the other liked. It was truly bliss. They sat effortlessly, indulging in what each loved and sharing the images and words they thought were most special. They didn’t need to fill the airspace with incessant conversation that would come up in time anyway and eventually fill the air stale until they would choke on it. In those days they could just sit in silence and indulge themselves in their passion, in the things that they each loved, and do it together. And it was perfect. The two of them stayed in there for hours, long after the rain stopped.
But that was a different lifetime ago, Craig thought. The thirty year old bachelor defined love much differently these days. But then again, perhaps that was Craig’s problem. These days Craig had a pretty set definition of what love was, he put it in his terms and he demanded them. But perhaps this was a result of Craig’s job, so it wasn’t completely his fault. Back then, Craig didn’t really define love, he didn’t have to, and it just kind of happened to him, it unraveled like a ball of yarn. It was defined through those moments, so in a sense, love became defined through hindsight. It was difficult to communicate in words; they saw it through gestures, in passing moments. Through the perfect silence at the table, exchanging the infrequent glance and indulging in a photograph. But they were young, and not blessed with hindsight. So instead of putting these moments in mason jars and appreciating them like fireflies, they let them pass each other by, tossing each perfect moment away in hopes of the next fleeting moment of bliss. They didn’t pin it down like a butterfly and marvel at its beauty, fully appreciate the elaborate symmetry and patterns on its back. Instead they were careless with their love, like all young people are. And eventually it fizzled and cracked and dried up.
Craig looked up from his magazine and noticed that the beautiful woman across from him had gone. As he looked towards the door, he saw she was on her out of the store and that it had stopped raining. Craig stood up, put his magazine back on the rack and went back outside to the cruel streets and back to work.