The body has a memory of its own. A silent remembrance of sinew and flesh, the way my hands cannot forget the shape of your face.
beneath my hands.
Blind butterflies, your fingers, fluttering against my skin, escaping, and returning. Folded quietly quietly before me, all silk and moonlight. You never did understand the nature of nets.
Never just to capture, love, not just to ensare. Made to hold, tangle wings, rend. Hollow bones collapsing. To teach the lessons of futility. But I never did teach you those, did I?
Foolish, then, I. To leave you to break yourself against the cage, bars not so loving as my arms.
02:31 p.m. - Sunday, February 9, 2003 - [tell her]
Words once spoken can never be recalled. Sentences like chains connect the tongues of unwary speakers to their heedless words and slowly pull them down. Inertia of the body cannot stand long against the gravity of hasty mouths.
Words unspoken collect in the concave bellies of the silent. Voiceless, the weight of unexpressed thought fills throats with walls of soundless despair. Swallowed whole, there is no recourse for the forgotten phrase.
10:22 p.m. - Friday, January 24, 2003 - [tell her]
love lies waiting
and i know that she will be as she always is when i return home; relaxed and languid on the bed, hair like molten sunlight, fingers splayed against herstomach, bare; herskin soft and white, inviting my hands. herlips parted, red and moist. the tears always forming in the corners of hereyes will shine but never fall
salty on my tongue.
10:11 p.m. - Friday, January 24, 2003 - [tell her]
impasse : a commentary
Drowning is a slow death. Breathing liquid when searching for air is slow motion horror; finding oneself in too-deep water without warning is like a silent implosion. When I look at my long-ago self strugging in that loveless tide, I cannot help but sigh. How fragile and unknowing I was then.
I am still in deep water and I am not floating well. Swimming for shore seems absurd. I have no idea in which direction it lies and I have no desire for movement. I feel like dead weight in the water. Sometimes I cannot tell if I am still striving to keep my head above the surface or if I've simply gotten so used to drowning that it no longer hurts.
08:27 p.m. - Friday, January 17, 2003 - [tell her]
It's like making love to ghosts to keep warm, she says. All it really does is make you colder, chill you more, but you feel warmer. So you keep doing it.
Her smile is wide and it frightens me. She tilts her head while she looks at me, laughs suddenly. You've never slept with the dead, have you? she asks. You've never needed warmth so much that it drives you to phantom arms. It's then that I notice that her mouth is very red. I wonder if I've angered her merely by existing.
Her colorless eyes shimmer in the dark, her pale hair gathering what light there is. When I don't answer, she smiles again, teeth white and glinting. Hope is a cruel mistress, she tells me, and is gone.
08:58 p.m. - Thursday, January 2, 2003 - [tell her]
There are days when I tip my head and the ocean slides between my ears.
01:37 a.m. - Monday, December 30, 2002 - [tell her]
There are always too many words in my mouth and I can't seem to breathe past the paragraphs lodged in my throat. The imprints of words that I have read or written or spoken are indelibly impressed on my hands, my arms, my forehead, bare skin a distant and receeding memory.
There is no escape from the barrage in the empty pages of notebooks or the blinking cursors of blank computer screens. A strange terror works at my spine, seduces my neurons, makes me laugh instead of choke. I cannot stem the tide of words and beneath them I drown.
01:08 a.m. - Monday, December 30, 2002 - [tell her]
Obsession is a strange thing. It's only in the the moments I feel faceless that I can truly see what I have reduced myself to and what I'm still reaching for despite years and fears and fallen gods.
The spaces inbetween my fingerbones are yawning and yawning, spreading wide and far and I can't escape beneath my eyelids anymore. The touch of rain on my skin is like skeletons dancing. I shiver.
There is no other ending.
12:43 a.m. - Sunday, December 29, 2002 - [tell her]
eager young bodies
I don't think you'll ever understand, he told me, cigarrette smoke streaming from his lips.
Just breathing your air is better than sex with most people to me.
07:24 p.m. - Tuesday, December 24, 2002 - [tell her]
december 7th, 1984
Early December -
crisp, the teasing hint
of snow on my tongue,
though the ground is bare.
Instead, the sky hovers
inches from the ground, filled
with clouds, grey and soft and wide.
It is cold yet I wait
I do not know from where
you will come. Paris,
perhaps, or Rome. Some
famous ancient city I
have never seen.
The winter wind shakes
the brittle branches of
naked December trees
as if to say,
I have seen all places,
and remind me of my limits.
Frost crunches beneath my
feet, the withered grass crying.
06:11 p.m. - Tuesday, December 24, 2002 - [tell her]
Where am I today?
With the sea salt dried
and crumbling from my lips
The emergence of love-burned skin
like the birth of suns
Beneath me sand shifts and whispers
to my tongue of somewhere
I have never been
the tide reaches for me then
with watery fingers
and i slip like silence into the depths
08:03 p.m. - Tuesday, December 17, 2002 - [tell her]
"Ah," she says. "I'd forgotten. You really don't know how far I've fallen." She shakes her head and laughs, her hair falling softly over her face.
That's the way I remember her most. Laughing like sunshine even in the depths of winter. Even when the dark was too deep, the water too cold.
The door opens. He looks at me a moment, then her. And she smiles.
"Hey," she says. "Hey."
The moment she left was like a spark. Like the exact second that winter becomes spring, but backwards. Like she was taking everything that was laughter and sunshine with her.
She leans back then, the sun on her hair like a halo. Suddenly she's so bright it's hard to look at her.
"Take care of each other," she says, and closes her eyes.
03:09 p.m. - Saturday, November 23, 2002 - [tell her]
Your breath is cold. The night is long and strokes me ungently, shadows like vines creeping through the silent crying places inside my flesh. The world shakes with your sobbing but I am somehow inviolate; separated and indifferent. As if the space between us spans years or stars rather than a scant handsbreadth.
While you gasp and rage in your private prison I only rest, longing for a different skin.
07:33 p.m. - Thursday, November 21, 2002 - [tell her]
Note: I wrote this for minority studies. I liked the way it turned out too much to not post it.
Falling Leaf Moon, Twenty Second Day
I wake to the thunder of hooves and guns. My mother is also just-woken but she has already gathered my younger sister and is motioning me to rise.
We must run, she tells me. We must run.
My father is long gone, rousing the warriors, many his brothers, or mine. The white men will be here soon, and there will be battle. We, the women, must go as far as we can, to a sister tribal band if possible. We will melt into the long prairie grass and pass like a ghost in a dream.
Beaver Moon, Eighth Day
We are far now and it is cold. The nights lengthen and we have found no sign of a sister band. There are only the plains silvered by the moon, the wind-whispers in the grass. My mother tells me that she does not believe our warriors have survived. We mourn, cut our hair. Shorn, the wind seems to sink deeper into my skin. She still seems haunted.
I felt him go, she says of my father. I felt him go.
If we cannot find a sister band before the deep cold comes we will either freeze or starve.
Beaver Moon, Sixteenth Day
We have walked far and long and still we are alone. The young falter, the elder fail. My sister grows weaker each day and I fear for her. What food we were able to gather in our flight is long gone. We are left to forage through the frosted grass.
Our fire at night is small, drawing in upon itself. We close around it in a tight circle, seeking what comfort is available from the simple contact of skin on skin. My mother grieves still.
It is not done, she insists. It is not done.
Beaver Moon, Twenty First Day
The snow has come. We eat little and move often. We have grown thin and the cold goes deeper than what flesh we have left. Many freeze and die in their sleep. Mother despairs.
Will it not end? she cries. Will it not end?
I pray. Fear seethes deep inside me.
Long Night Moon, Fourth Day
My sister succumbs. My mother is broken and I weep. Her grave is shallow in earth. The snow is deep, the ground frozen. Mother does not or cannot speak. There is nothing left to say.
Long Night Moon, Seventh Day
More snow, and more cold. It becomes harder to wake each day. Mother is silent.
Long Night Moon, Eleventh Day
We have finally found a sister band. We are far fewer than when we began, but that we are at all is enough. Their fire is large, bright, and warm. We eat a real meal. I am exhausted and I cannot stop crying. I am not the only one. Mother still does not speak but she is solid beside me.
We give thanks to the Great Spirit for our deliverance and she is crying too. When she turns to me there is something familiar and once-lost in her face.
We will begin again, she tells me. It is all we can do.
07:05 p.m. - Thursday, November 21, 2002 - [tell her]
an explanation of sorts
Winterfallen, winterchild, wintersea, and wintersun. Frost-twined bones and icy flesh, the meaning beneath more than snow or cold.
To be winterfallen, the winterchild, is to hold the winter inside, incapable of warmth. As a winter sky that seems to smile but only offers silence and denial. To laugh and never feel it. To vanish like summer snow and live with perennial regret like roses, white and red and gold.
A blizzard in the shape of a girl, eyes of ice and lips of frost. Unmelting, immutable, frozen. Unchanging and unchangable, this child of snow.
12:06 p.m. - Saturday, November 17, 2002 - [tell her]
All that's left is a great roaring emptiness. A fathomless unloved space enclosed by the fragile bounds of skin. A star turned inside out, a black hole from which nothing - or rather, everything, escapes.
Like a great hollow well I am sinking into myself. Collapsing inward, a slow motion avalanche. Implosion at the most miniscule level. The weight of all that nothingness rests heavily in my stomach while the realization that I can never get away echoes endlessly in my head.
12:01 p.m. - Saturday, November 17, 2002 - [tell her]
Smokey waitress, browneyed, busty. I can feel you ogling her from the other side of the building. It makes me bitter and I wonder if you're even aware of me, huddled in the bathroom, on my knees, wretched and retching.
Fat chance, I suppose. You've always been blissful oblivious, waltzing through life with my heart on your sleeve. It doesn't matter what I think of all these stupid roadside diners with their greasy tables and greasier blondes. If it makes you happy, I always end up being towed along behind. So I guess that's why I'm here, knocked down and knocked up at the same time.
Pity. I used to be such a bright girl.
11:56 a.m. - Saturday, November 17, 2002 - [tell her]
Help me. I've fallen to this drowning space and I cannot free myself of these vines and thorns. What I have lost, what you have forgotten, is no closer now than the sky. Forever just out of reach, barely brushing fingertips. Leaving skin tasting of clouds and tears. Lost, I, the fallen swallow child.
A deeper forgiveness cannot be given, I suppose, than the slow closing over as I am folded under like a wound. The gentle diminishing, the substitution of water for air. The quiet filling in and sinking, sinking, sinking.
(Dimming perception. Fading away.)
I feel you on my shores, love, but you've come too late. Savor the sea sun, and turn away.
11:50 a.m. - Saturday, November 17, 2002 - [tell her]
You give yourself to the land, he says, like a lover. When you are laid to rest you will sleep inside her and your bones become her bones, your blood her blood, your flesh, her flesh.
He stops then, calm, still. The lines on his face, deep as scars, tell stories without his voice. He is as a desert tree, unassuming but sure.
11:47 a.m. - Saturday, November 17, 2002 - [tell her]
first hour algebra
Sometimes it's hard to keep talent seperate from potential.
Take notes, kid.
11:46 a.m. - Saturday, November 17, 2002 - [tell her]
Isn't this what you've always wanted, she'll say, cruel and beautiful. And she'll laugh because she doesn't know any other way.
11:44 a.m. - Saturday, November 17, 2002 - [tell her]
And then she's unwell sometimes, but she just smiles and lies with her eyes. Fine, she says, I'm fine.
Those are the times she can't let the sky in and the smoke makes her cough, though she's been breathing it for years and years. And it's not even a normal smokey cough, but something thick and yellow, something heavy and cold. It scares me but I can't seem to do anything. She just holds up her hand and smiles again and it's like rain.
There's always so much space around her and I wonder if she's ever lonely.
11:37 a.m. - Saturday, November 17, 2002 - [tell her]
Tell me something true. Just one thing.
11:36 a.m. - Saturday, November 17, 2002 - [tell her]
The flat accusing stare of millions. The restless shifting whispers of rebellion. An invisible chasm that widens and yawns, a beast to the kill.
Beneath the waves and surface calm there is always the hint of something deeper, darker. Like a silent thrill or promise, the seduction of deep water. The pull of the current.
One never knows or notices until one goes under.
11:27 a.m. - Saturday, November 17, 2002 - [tell her]
I usually don't like addressing readers directly here, but I suppose it's past due that I do.
Anyway, this past month I've been internetless. Hence, the few (no) posts. But! I was recently re-enfranchised so I shall posting again soon (I've been writing in a notebook while offline, so expect a flood), but probably still not overly often. And possibly not until I change the layout.
Anyway, I just figured I should let you all know :)
03:32 p.m. - Tuesday, November 12, 2002 - [tell her]
Limitless and divine. An empty space defined by clear, seamless walls. Ice, perhaps, or glass. A small drawing-in space, a womb or a tomb. Not warm there, or cold. A simple sense of being.
Tranquility in a bottle.
09:01 p.m. - Wednesday, October 2, 2002 - [tell her]
a simple admonishment
Don't try and tell me you're happpy. I've known you too long, known you too well, to be taken by your wiles. I know you miss the taste of her smiles, the scent of her skin, the feel of her breath.
You may be able to lie to yourself but never to me.
06:07 p.m. - Sunday, September 29, 2002 - [tell her]
Dreams are like falling shards of glass, dropping continiously toward earth; shattering
deliberately, musically. As you watch them, they seem to descend ever more slowly, turning and twisting, irridescent, playing with the light; their curved shapes glisten, each nuance a lifetime.
Once a dream-shard catches your eye, you must reach out with both hands and grasp it without
hesitation; in the time you take to turn, it falls to the floor and is gone (the hands of time do not turn backwards).
09:48 p.m. - Wednesday, September 25, 2002 - [tell her]
"There are times when you can't go on," he tells me. "When you just have to swallow and smile and hope it's enough to get you through the day."
I tell him that I don't quite understand, and he nods, not looking at all surprised.
"It's because it hasn't happened to you yet," he says sounding fond and bitter at the same time. "You haven't lost yet." He smiles, and I wonder what could ever have hurt him so badly. He knows what I'm thinking and his expression changes subtly, but I know what he's saying - that I should already know. And I suppose I do.
Oh, I say.
"Yes, oh," he responds.
Did it really hurt that much? I ask him.
"Yes, it did," he tells me. "More than you can possibly imagine."
He wasn't worth that much, I tell him.
"But he was," and now his eyes are faraway. "He was brilliant. Beautiful. And doomed, I suppose."
That doesn't mean he had the right to take you with him, I say, indignant.
"Perhaps not," he says, "but it really was my choice in the end." He smiles again, not so bitter now. "You are so naive. It's what I love about you."
I don't answer and simply let him hold me.
Some days you really can't go on. I know more than he gives me credit for.
08:33 p.m. - Sunday, September 15, 2002 - [tell her]
The rustling echoes of paper. White beaches, stretching long and far, beyond the scope of eyes, of ears. Such feeble senses, these. The sun upon the waves, a beautiful deceit. Taunting. Promising better things if you would just fall asleep in the water.
The pages turn, a dry, whispery rasp. Airy fingers slipping between the leaves.
It's coming, beloved. You feel it too.
07:33 p.m. - Sunday, September 15, 2002 - [tell her]
this, that i hold
You'll remember. You may not want to (you'll scream), it may hurt you (you'll beg), but you won't be able to make it go away (you'll never escape). I'll be there, buried deep. Hidden in that aching place, entombed like some ancient pharoh. Sleeping, perhaps. Waiting.
Because you're mine. And you know I'll never let you go.
01:02 a.m. - Sunday, September 15, 2002 - [tell her]
The reason that I "don't do" relationships is that I would need my partner to be wholly devoted to me. To barely be a separate person. Barely someone else, an extension of myself. Less than a breath away.
Is this romanticism? Cynicism? Plain selfishness? Or true need?
Who am I really and what am I doing with myself? Where does this stop and how do I move on? Where is this mythical other self? Does he exist?
(and why can't i let him go when i haven't even met him?)
12:45 a.m. - Saturday, September 8, 2001 - [tell her]
lighter than a i r . . .
She sings alone (and we are as the fading dreams). In her round room she is as a distant island (tell me where all the happy endings have gone), a faint water-colored blur on the horizon. Her breath is nearly still between her lips (and we cannot return from this falling place) but still the song is pure and clear (like snowflakes melting on her tongue). A living relic, born of the ages. This maiden fair is far beyond your reach.
01:47 p.m. - Wednesday, September 4, 2002 - [tell her]
At what price, love? How long and how far before you deem the payment too great? Before you realize that your life is separate from my veins, a different river, a different shore? I've asked you, warned you, so many countless times.
This path leads only to destruction, beloved. Heed my words (though I fear you won't).
When this passes I know you will only blame me. Is it not my task to curb your willfulness? To cradle your innocence? There is always something that I have failed to do.
Too long and too far, love. This can only end here.
04:51 p.m. - Sunday, September 1, 2002 - [tell her]
Singed pages crumbling to ash. Paper, flaking away like forgotten promises. The residue of secrets, easing beneath fingernails. Anxiety, grasping, desperate to remember. Resentment flaming just below the surface.
How could you do this to me? You knew I had nothing to lose but you.
02:45 p.m. - Saturday, August 31, 2002 - [tell her]
Stop it. Stop the games, the banter, the whispers. Stop looking at me like I'm the one who turned off the lights and slipped into your bed. I don't like riddes, I don't like puzzles, I don't like your anagrams for love. I never asked for this. I never asked for you to take care of me.
All I wanted was for you to tell me who I am.
08:58 p.m. - Friday, August 30, 2002 - [tell her]
It's in the scent of twilight. In the color of firefly trails and candlelight, the sound of midnight rain. The feeling of a shadowself falling, gently, gently to your side. The taste of your skin. The warmth of your fingers and the heat of your breath. Moonlight pooling around you like broken promises and moments of passion. Your silent beckoning eyes.
(and i always know i'm not the one you want)
04:40 p.m. - Friday, August 30, 2002 - [tell her]
04:40 p.m. - Friday, August 30, 2002 - [tell her]
musings: pretty angsty boy edition
I don't know if you realize how hard it is for me. To bear your smiles and your laughter, your affection. The way your eyes light up when you see me. It's like endless days in the sun and this overwhelming, all-consuming happiness. Happiness. It's more than I've ever had before. And yet you're still pretending. I want to ask you why you do this, and why me of all people, but I'm afraid if I do it will all just go away. Vanish. And I'll be alone again.
So we just go on like this. Because it makes us "happy." Even if you are empty behind your mask, I can't stop needing you.
04:33 p.m. - Friday, August 30, 2002 - [tell her]
Palebrown heatcracked finedust. The color of her eyes at night, honeyed amber. A too warm stretch of vast not-desert sand, the burning against her skin. The sun, so bright, stinging her, scorching, peeling away the excess layers.
This is rebirth. The soft singing sighs.
07:02 p.m. - Thursday, August 29, 2002 - [tell her]