14 September 2021

Love Is Alive and Well in America--Sketches

Preface
She's been so well. The waters have been so still. She isn't sure what to do with this even though her days are busy. But her mind is too quiet. She set it aflame again for a bit. And she had to relieve it before she went mad again. So. How did she make it begin begin begin begin? Like this:

1.) Watching Brief Interviews with Hideous Men last night. For women, it's deeply wounding to watch the film or read the David Foster Wallace short story of the same title. As a woman with a few lovers under her belt, it's enough to break your fucking heart better than it was broken in the first place. All the knives break bone at once. All the knives twist into her heart at once. We just don't know what we do to each other under the magic illusion, especially when it gets to be work. That's when the illusion dies and reality sets in and we're left alone to our own devices, vices, guns, words, thoughts, razors, traffic, pills, booze, coke--the needle and the damage done.

2.) She went to sleep after the film, its reverberations breathing into her bones. As a result: a lingering web of ruminations and bereft hopelessness that she will ever get to a place of mutual wellness and worship with another man. After a lifetime of failures, she turned to her most recent love affair and its debilitating failure.

The virus of self-destruction hit. She refused to stop herself. 


He's been way over her for a year or more if he was ever in it to begin with. The virus of the internet ether is a killer. So she looked. She hadn't done it in months. This girl is innocent, unadulterated, surely sweet, surely wonderful, surely kind, surely unburdened, surely hopeful, surely full of wonder and light. Surely a child. Surely refreshing.

She wants him to be happy. She holds no animosity for the girl. Remember, all to come in these stories is a projection of her own affliction and has nothing to do with anyone but herself. She is addicted to her own suffering. It is one of her many afflictions.

Maybe she's getting too well. Maybe she wants the taste of her waning madness. Sometimes stability can be boring. 

She wishes foolishly that things could have been good with this good man. In truth it was a brief affair both of them knew better to begin--both whistling past the graveyard, knowing it was all doomed from the start. But she falls too deep as she always does. Others wade in the shallows, retreating easily to the bright sun and solid ground of moving right along.

She knows it was all illusion anyway. She knows it's all been illusion, is always illusion. Is not a real thing--this stupid thing, this creator of more pain than joy, this hollow word called love. 

Bluebirds in Her Heart

And it's enough to make a man weep. But I don't weep. Do you? -- Bukowski

She wants them all the happiness she wants for herself. Probably, she wishes them each even more happiness, more peace. This is one of her many afflictions. The words to follow were written in madness and in wellness and will great ego, ignorance and retaliation. 


She loves each of these men the same--which is with a forever love. But it hurts, when they add up; they begin to take up too much room, but she doesn't want to let them out. She likes them being her loves, her bluebirds. Everything she says here is one small attack. A little heart attack written the instant the pain became too much to bear. She inflicts her own wounds. Pours poison on the bloody muscle, tendons, just to feel it, to bring it back again and again and again.

She will judge harshly. But this is only her way of releasing how deep she lets the pain go. She always does it to herself. She ignores the numerous looks of longing, the quivering confessions of love, the honest vulnerability in the eyes and touch of too many past, too many present. As she's said, blaspheming Sylvia Plath, " Rejection is an art; I do it exceptionally well."

This is, again, another one of her many afflictions. So here are words. Words not written out of malice. Words written out of regret, desperation, heartbreak and insanity. 

Just in case you're in these words, please remember, for all these hurtful words, the ones in her heart flow like an ocean of painful tenderness and care and the hope for the contentment we all seek. Do not let these words hurt you. These are words of her own self-destruction, putting her wrath on you so you will hate her, become indifferent, loathe her, fear her, despise her. What better way, what better way can she go, than to burn bridges across the once tender and strong ties between two hearts, and smoke them into an effigy where she's the villain, the pitied, the nonentity, the hysteric, the impossible, the impossible to love.

Bad Behavior

The truth will set you free. But not until it's finished with you.--David Foster Wallace

She told him she’d put him in her novel. Promised a broken Norweigen accent and assured him he’d be a good guy. She believed that then. This was before she went insane. Before he dropped his feelings like a rock to the bottom of the ocean and moved on while she just stood at the sea’s edge with sand in her hands. Now she’s not so sure anymore what to do with this apparition that was love. Her love. Not his. He didn’t love her. Never had. Got out before he could get too hurt but it was already too late for her. It was always too late for her.

Soon. Soon she’ll see this tiny story as another delusion, another thing she talked her brain into. She knew nothing about love.

“You can’t re-create the past,” Nick Carraway told Gatsby. But Gatsby didn’t believe him. Gatsby was the single most hopeful person Nick had ever known; and Gatsby said, “Oh, but you can.”

Gatsby was wrong, of course. His castle, his parties, the diamonds and the glistening sea all made for her, his love, his past, washed away with the tide, came crumbling down on him. He died hopeful nonetheless. Why couldn’t she be more hopeful all the way to the end?

She never considered herself a realist. And she wasn’t. But she could, every now and then, be reasonable. Let the parentheses of madness pass and then, then the mourning stage between depression and acceptance lines its way between bouts of fantasy, turns the grief to acceptance.

She can’t even tell if any of it was true, anyway. But it was. She knows it was. For her anyway. He still wandered into the back of her mind, unbidden but welcomed. She worried that he felt the same indifference she felt toward the two lovers who directly preceded him. She hoped not. She hoped he missed her, just a little. But.

But. What did it matter? You can never know. She didn’t want to know unless it was good news. News that he missed her. Just a little. But it wasn’t likely. She suffocated him. He was glad to be free. She wrung him dry. His patience wasn’t infinite after all. No one’s is. Men don’t quite get the attachment bit. Not as much. Their minds root deeper into reason. While women, well, women are a different story.


She knew he had women and girls right before her. On the side, behind him, ahead of him. She knew his drinking would kill her before it killed him. She knew her reigns were too tight on him. But she couldn’t let go while his reigns tightened on the feelings, on any love, any investment. It ended well at first.

And of course she prolonged it. She messaged him and texted him her waves of emotional delusions and madness in a stream-of-conscious deluge. No editing. No quiet. No release. Nonetheless, she was worth it. She was worth it. She was. It was just too insane for him. Too insane for him not to let go. And, well, she was too insane to not let him go.

She still struggles. This makes her angry. She still thinks of him and misses him and wishes things had been different. She’s humiliated by her behavior. But she was wide open. Insane. Terrifying. Awful. Senseless. But she was a rush of open heart while his closed and closed and closed against it.

This didn’t stop him from just a couple of weeks of mourning before he moved on. Moved on to a 23-year-old blonde. Easy. Untainted. No remorse or heartbreak behind her. Only a few years out of high school—five or so to be exact. Easy.

Who doesn’t want easy?

I Like My Version Better

“The world breaks all of us…”—Hemingway

Heartache is a sign you’re still alive. She finally. Finally. After her mind’s hurricane past and her madness settled in on her broken surroundings, hit the ground, and finally stood still for awhile, she grieved but one. Just one. Looked back. Kept looking back. Desperately, still in the grips of her rapid cycling of her brain’s chemicals, swirling like a storm, blowing up like bombs, sending shrapnel from her heart’s atomic bomb to the skin and minds of the innocent.

She created her own monster. Revenged herself all over herself. Still. She’s gotta let go. Just go through the grief. Walk through the fire of her own making. No one but herself. Not one single one but herself will ease this ache. It’s a hangover, months long, lingering. But in her insanity, there was only a bloody grip, crazed manipulation, a tornado of contradicting desires. She was ready to destroy herself. Start drinking again for him. Knowing it would kill her. She was so desperate to have another fill her emptiness she was prepared to die.

That is not love. It’s insanity.

Two suicide attempts of pills, then traffic. Two hospital stays in two months. No one to blame but herself.

Laughed at by the Gods. She’s learning she’s not defective.

She’s learning, oh somewhere in the back of her mind, that there’s no one she needs to love more than herself. Herself first. Real care. It’s coming. It’s happening. She’s gotta work to keep the monsters out, but yes, oh yes, she forgot. She forgot she was no longer afraid of the dark. All she could think of were the poppies and the deep earth, the craving of pomegranate seeds, her own undoing.

Another Letter
There comes a point. There comes a point. There comes a point when you seriously can only laugh at yourself. Because if you didn't? You would quite possibly shoot yourself in the face. Why is this self-destruction so comfortable?

One road here. Turn left. Make yourself think you're falling in love. Or maybe you did fall in love. And then it didn't work--like countless affairs before. Danger. Risk. It's always there. You make a decision. You sound well. You're good.

Then, bam! The hammer. The scrambling. The madness. ("I live in the dark/In the deep dark/Alone/With voices only I can hear.")

I am no longer oh in my mid-twenties. But, you know. When you have to look your illness in the face, what can you do but run far away, into the arms of a willing young woman who's hardly really lived, who won't question anything you do.

You're safe. She's tight and thin and you probably can throw her all over the place. I know we never would work. You're never going to stop drinking.I wanted so badly for it to work. But you declined. You even came to my hometown. To see a show I wanted to see. Just a few miles from my old home. That you probably thought was mine.

Did you think of me? What did you think? I need to let you go. Feed your essence and images and the sound of your voice and all your words and movements and warmth. All the almost love for you. The total love for me. The whole thing, But.

You would have engulfed me. I would have let it happen. We knew it was all wrong. And I will never forget you. You won't forget me either. Memories of my mad messages will fade away. And you'll remember me. Indelible. Painted to the soft flesh beneath your sweet eyelids. My love for you does not belong to you. It belongs to me. I offered. And you refused.

Rightly. You can't stay alone very long. And you have a new girlfriend. In her mid-twenties. She likes Kenny Chesney and Blink 182. When you graduated high school in 1991, she was probably five at the oldest. But hold her. Or fuck the living daylights out of her. Whatever you want. Salve yourself forever. Whatever keeps you sleeping through the night.

My ego hates your rejection. She wishes you would help her try again. 

Let me forget about me. I like to rip my wounds open and pour salt on them. It's a foolish thing but it's what I've always done.

I'll let go. Only if I stop looking for pain to shoot me in the face. We're all the same to you. All just in a different package. Some your age. Beauties. Intelligent beauties you've known years. Grown women. Some are girls. Blonde. Too young. But hey, you're a consummate charmer and a wonderful person.

We can't always get what we want. And we don't know how the story ends. As long as someone is fucking you. You're okay? As long as someone is laying her head on your chest. It's all right. Everything. Everything's all right forever.

Goodbye to you.

Good. Bye.



04 June 2020

This is a Public Service Announcement (With Guitar)

This is a public service announcement
With guitar
Know your rights
All three of them
Number one
You have the right not to be killed
Murder is a crime
Unless it was done
By a policeman
Or an aristocrat
Oh, know your rights
And number two
You have the right to food money
Providing of course
You don't mind a little
Investigation, humiliation
And if you cross your fingers
Rehabilitation
Know your rights
These are your rights
Hey, say, Wang
Oh, know these rights
Number three
You have the right to free speech
As long as
You're not dumb enough to actually try it
Know your rights
These are your rights
Oh, know your rights
These are your rights
All three of 'em
Ha!
It has been suggested in some quarters
That this is not enough
Well
Get off the streets
Run
Get off the streets

23 March 2017

Words from Our Dream Sponsors: Houzz, The Daydreamer's Escape from Doomsday

Thursday is For Dreaming of Good Plumbing
I am procrastinating. I am all revved up to do the work. But sometimes I get sidetracked into dream bathrooms and end up on the best place on the internet for decor dreamers who are unfortunately not do-ers of master remodels et al but have devoted hours of careful planning in my head and sharing on Pinterest and collaging into my little art journals.
On an upswing this early morning, and have been coming up with all kinds of brilliant ideas and plans and projects and stuff...organizing email, getting new extensions, software, and apps. Reorganizing furniture. Making systems for systems that already work.

My brain does have the information organized. That truly is what most of writing is. Gestation! Okay.
I am hyped up enough to share this lady's soothing and satisfying staring-into-meditative-space-moment-of-zen (whilst facing your monitor or talking client).
Time to stop typing and satisfy this stall tactic and get to the work.
I hope it fires your neurons and wakes up your brain and satisfied you on thid third day of Spring in the year of our tenuous lord, 2000andSeventeen.

Happy dreaming. xx

02 March 2017

I Still Believe in Lloyd Dobler





Of course, I probably turned away and broke the hearts of too many versions of him over the years. Pick the nice ones, even and especially when it's terrifying. Timing is everything.

21 February 2017

The Revolution Will Not Be Televised








08 February 2017

International Clash Day

"You have the right to free speech," they say.

"As long as you're not dumb enough to actually try it."

15 August 2016












MONDAY POEM DAY

like ray carver's daughter (reprise)

"you're grown-up, now, and lovely.
you're a beautiful drunk, daughter.
but you're a drunk."
-- raymond carver


when the world falls apart,
you settle like dirt
to the earth of your life.
what happens, dad,
when the world falls apart?

i drink like a fish, daddy,
and i know you were not
like yeats, you never wished
me plain. my eyes burn greenand dark, and nightly, i
pour myself into poisoned
waters, embracing snakes
wrapped round my waist
like a dress of sinuous death.
i don't want to wreck

this liver so tenderly built,
don't want to break
these bones cast
in the milk of love,
don't want to wring dry

the red river of blood
that has become my heart.
but i have, again, fallen apart.
my insides tear paper over and over
like a quiet rush of trees.

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Dear Republican Party

First in a series. Hopefully.

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