And from the still burning wreckage
rises yet another version of the story:
They met at the end of summer sols-
tice. Free, wild and naïve as everyone
else in their town was when they were
young. Picture this: Ext. Abandoned
Town Hall – Dusk |The clouds slowly ignite
vividly, setting the sky on auburn flames.
A young man’s silhouette walks toward
the mirages of the scorching pavement.
On the far right side of the screen, awaits
a young woman. The wind suddenly
goes insane and the young woman’s
hair becomes the waves of the ocean.
Total silence. Between them is the picture
of a day about to end and a night about
to rise. The distance gradually shrinks,
inward, as the two slowly walk toward
each other. Heads looking down their
feet. Hearts roaring louder and louder.
Breeze calming the chaos inside of their
ribcages. Heads gently tilt up and the
momentum pays off. In their silhouettes,
their eyes twinkle like stars, and slowly
their lips touch and burn like the pavement.
A yellow superimposed “FIN” rises from the
bottom of the screen. A piano starts to play
a poignant melody. End credits roll.
I am a seed, nurtured deep within the ancient depths. A trickle of tears came flowing through the veins of time; both of sorrow and joy, helped me, shaped me, I grow strong. I’ve broken free from my earthly cradle, I can see the light from our sun, it warms me, blinds me, fills me with hope. My wings are coming in now. Evergreen my feathers, dressed in full summer splendor. For the first time I’ve left the ground, swooped past my neighbor trees, above the clouds I go. I have never seen the earth from such heights. Above me lay only the stars, where I will find my way…
He turned the music up loud, letting it vibrate through his earbuds and being, while gradually being seduced to the place he enjoyed living the most these days. Lost in music, but observing her discreetly as she moved around the office as if she was a movement from one of his favourite Bach concertos.
He had as a matter of fact been doing that. Observing her. From the very first day she had walked through the doors of what he called his day to day living hell, where he was mentally shackled to his desk while trying to stay on top of life. When in reality, he was like an old living sinking battleship taking in water from every gun port that had now lost its mortal force as they had been stripped away by life.
She was air. She was sky. She was lust wrapped in a fire of life that fascinated him daily, making him lose his concentration more times than he cared to admit. He shouldn’t for many reasons, he knew, yet he couldn’t resist the sinful temptation of at least letting his eyes rest on her, and take her in, but of course they never really stopped there, his thoughts.
He wanted nothing more than to unbutton, slowly, each of her blouse buttons, making her wait in anticipation for his lips to reach the sensitive skin and fill his mouth full of it, as he played and kissed the pink flower buds to make her sigh and moan while his hands continued, teasingly, travelling towards the warmth of the south. Preparing her, for one of his hands, and tongue, to make her body arch and writhe sensually in lust…
“ Do you still want me to prepare those files you asked me about earlier ? I have the time now….”
He stared at her, unable to answer instantly, so lost in thought as he tried to rein in his visual of her naked body on his desk being ravaged to the full extent of his wants and force.
“ Mmm….you do that” was the only sensible thing he could say as he then dismissed her, a bit harshly and unfairly so. To try to compose himself while staring out his panoramic view of the city like a captain standing on the bridge of his sinking battleship as Bach brought the last image of his sinful dreams to a close.
Her mind was still filled with Bach’s Crab Canon on a Moebius Strip, urging her to hum it, back to front, to meet the other voice, precisely, a contrapuntal perfection of bodies entangled, hers and his.
And she wondered if he ever noticed the abyss that opened behind her big brown eyes. If he ever realised that inside of her there are no green pastures, stilettos or tube skirts hugging her hips. Would she ever dare turning herself inside out for him, and let him see that there was but chaos inside of her?
As she lifted her eyes from the files, she lost herself on him, and the absence of him for he obviously was not there, albeit staring out of the window; she tried to guess what was behind his eyes, if there was this vertical drop, where he lived most of the time - just like she did, inside of her - somewhere dark and deep, or if there were meadows matching the outside of him.
The absurdity of it all were the letters she used to write to him at night, in her small flat, on the outskirts of the city. The letters that spoke the truth or what she wanted the truth to be. The truth of her feelings for him. Letters that she would keep in a small shoe box under her bed, closed with a drop of perfume, and made ready, ready to never be sent.
Going into his office she deposes the files on top of his pristine desk: paperless, objectless, but for a desk lamp, a pen placer with its fountain pen and a photo frame framing a smile that does not belong to her.
Slowly turning, he smiles and she knows then that she’s not worthy, for his fingers in her hair are beyond her dreams.
God called me Fish Heart. Lily Mouth. I was an evening sort of girl. He liked me better ripped up, bar bathrooms, bar peanuts, skip the small talk. We’re both Adam. We’re both Eve. In the mornings, swallowing bait, swallowing nails, pulling apart the microwave, two forks and an empty socket. Baby, there is always a limit. Hours spent rubbing my belly, waiting for watermelon trees, or orange bushes, or flowers heavy with green apples. And now, this is what I can dissect: his fingers in the gut of the fish, his fingers in the core of the flower, always pulling. Like it wasn’t enough to feel, like He had to see, to know.
Excellent articulation of emotion. I’m sure many of us fear regret, the same way you do.
The days pass in an unquestioned haze. I am barely here. Like time spent washing the dishes or engaging in some other menial task. Thoughtless.
I cannot create in a fugue state. I cannot find inspiration in a world in which I fail to acknowledge, at least, my own existence. I wish I were lucid in my dreams. But I am not. Instead I sleep in the space of a blink and I wake as unaware and disconnected as before.
When I do dream it is of cold beaches. Of seas rough and uninviting. I dream that I lie on a towel among friends. Around us lionesses are torn to shreds by beasts as huge and black as bison, their carcasses pulled out to see by the rising tide. And yet I am calm. The dead are a small inconvenience like fruit flies at a picnic. I wake and I am helpless. I am impotent. I do not care.
I wonder why, in interviews, they ask me about my hopes and fears, As though these two things should come in pairs. Hopes and fears. My hopes are incompatible with my fears. My fears disembowel my hopes and leave them hollowed on unforgiving shores. The question should be, “what are your fears and regrets?”
My fears are regrets. I fear regret. I fear that my life will pass this way, elbow deep in suds, eyes glazed, the sun setting before I have a chance to even wake up. I fear I will never wake up.
Somebody told me yesterday that they wish I could just catch a break. I don’t see my life as a series of tragedies, because I am learning and growing.
I think I love well and I love hard. I think that potential is a word that makes me sick to my stomach but that I am glad I have it, though I want to be more than enough today.
Please hear me.
Because I can’t help but wonder why my father can’t speak to me since the day I told him of the man that stole me - the man that made a home of my body. My father considers himself a Christian man, but I can assume that because I am not “walking with you,” and that this plays a huge part in why he’s abandoned me.
And I can’t help but wonder why, only two months after fighting for ninety days just to cover my bones with flesh again why he ripped me apart when I was finally whole. I can’t help but wonder if I deserved to be broken. I had an ocean afterwards only to have it sucked dry by circumstance.
When my mother said that she wished I had gone instead of my brother, I can’t help but question my purpose when all I see is disappointment.
I want to know, where is my brother?
And the threat of a serious physical illness stalks me, and I wonder, wasn’t it enough to have the phantom sickness of anxiety and depression crippling me, isn’t it enough that I try so hard to be something, to make a difference in this world without another brick to weigh me down beneath these sheets? I want to make a difference and I’m terrified that I don’t have enough time.
And I want to see my children grow old but not in a world full of empty bloody wars, not when the earth is growing hotter and the tides are rising.
Dear God, I don’t know who you are and I am not asking for sympathy.
But if I am running out of time, please don’t let me leave this world without my fingerprints blossoming over everything I have ever loved.
Rose-covered door, canary yellow (both flower and wood), the door to a paradise sought by many but found by only few. Within there is a homely warmth that is unrivaled, complete with the rich smell of something always baking, lingering for days after it has been enjoyed. Within, there is a quiet peace, where the only disturbance comes at night with the song of the tree frogs, eagerly looking for a mate. To think that such a desired comfort would have more occupants within, but no one ever stays for long. The one known as Trouble always seems to drag them away soon after they have found this place, to fill their lives again with sorrow and anxiety. But it is still a dream to many, the desirable, the unobtainable, the seemingly impossible.
Love is a loud accusation being shouted at you from the back of a shitty dive bar. The noise pollution cuts through the walla walla of idle chatter. Who the fuck is yelling all those ugly, slurred words in your direction?! You flex your ego and ball up your fists. “When I find that rude motherfucker, I am going to put my knuckles right through their face. I’m going to crush their windpipe and shatter their jaw.” You bluster in the direction of the crowd — even though you’re speaking to no one in particular — as you grab a bottle and smash it against the side of a table. But no matter how tough you think you are, you’re always brining a bottle to a knife fight. And if you bring a knife, you’re walking into to a gun fight. And if you bring a gun, you’re charging into a chemical weapons brawl. And if you bring chemical weapons, you’re running into a nuclear arms race. ‘Cause no mater how bad ass you are, love is bigger, nastier, and willing to do what you’re not.
Love is comically huge, 8-bit video game style bullet moving at the speed of "holy fuck these graphics suck!" You twiddle your thumbs waiting for the god damn thing to cross the screen. There is no possible way you can fuck this up… but you always seem to jump at the wrong moment.
Love is wearing your favorite sweater in the middle of a heat wave but being too stubborn to strip it off. It’s swimming in the ocean when you’re dying of thirst. It’s being allergic to citrus when you’re dying of scurvy. It’s being lactose intolerant but eating a second scoop of ice cream anyway…
Love is a lot like death, without the release from sensation or responsibility; without the bliss of being unaware that you’re rotting away underground.
It will fucking end you…
But it can also bring you back, reborn and fresh…so it can slay you… but then you rise back up… again and again… like a zombie.
And sure, you’re a fucking zombie, but technically so was Jesus and things seemed to work out pretty well for him in the end, right?
At least someone might write
liesstories about you.
I don’t know the types of people you have known or the men you have been with.
You, like all others, have been shaped by those experiences. The past we carry into the present and the days ahead.
Do we fit somewhere in the mould shaped by society? This isn’t about your past or those who have touched your flesh. This is about us, you and I. We are not to be defined.
I do not know how to verbalise what I feel for you, but these words find a way of making themselves necessary at times. I won’t make promises or treating us as metaphors. I will be there.
There will be days when words don’t arrive and I shall care for your silences. Your mind is an amazing playground, my love. Yet, it moves so rapidly at times, it burdens you. Do not let it consume you.
Do not let our silences fill your mind with worry. There will be days where we do not speak. Those days we might miss one another or fill our thoughts with all that surrounds us. I won’t make promises, but those moments of silence will not lead to me forgetting you.
I don’t know the types of people you have known or the men you have been with. And that, my love, doesn’t matter.
Do we fit somewhere in the mould shaped by society? This isn’t about your past or those who have touched your flesh. This is about us, you and I. We are not to be defined.
Can you ever forget? Do you ever want to forget? Or do you just have to force yourself to forget to be able to survive and function in your day to day life, even if it meant to forget someone like him.
This was supposed to be a fun work trip back to the city she fell in love with so many years ago, but as she rose from the tangled sheets and stepped into the shower to let her aching body relax after hardly getting any sleep, she only felt nostalgia and regret as she swallowed hard not to cry at what had slipped away. She sighed deeply. Why did she torture herself this way? Why did she punish herself so much? And why did regret hurt so much?
She had only been in the city for a couple of days, but in between meetings she had walked down memory lane and gone to where they had slowly fallen in love. She could still remember how it felt to touch him, and how it had felt when he touched her. Her body was in reality still watermarked, even after so many years, and if she ever caught the scent of his perfume on another man it made her instantly time travel to a time to where the future was open, unknown and filled with passionate love.
She touched lightly the door to where he used to live, and where a new name had taken his place. She would never forget him, she understood that now, she just couldn’t, but you can’t turn back the time either. So she walked the few steps over to the piazza to where they used to go, and sat down to write a message on a postcard with his old address on, and when she was finished she stuck it into her diary because it didn’t matter that he would never get it, as the few words, ti amo, with love from Rome, were written down with so much love and honesty.
He didn’t understand how it was possible to write beauties about being in love. He never wanted to be in love, he abhorred love, a primordial weakness that suddenly cuts you in half because you’re not whole anymore, when you’re in love, are you? You just lost half of yourself like a share price dropping to half its price on the first tick of a new trading day.
He hated her so much; he hated her because she didn’t leave his thoughts, because she left when he asked her to stay, because she left without leaving. But he fell, hopelessly, in that hole they call love, that he hates so much, that feeling that builds in the center of his brain, that feeling that torments you, that doesn’t relief you, that is beyond sexuality, a longing that you feel even in the presence of the object of your affection, or your affliction.
The first time he saw her was at the tutorial he was responsible for in the Department of Mathematics at the University of Rome. She was part of a group of six students, meeting weekly for discussion and guidance. The way she followed the scribbles he drew on the board - neither looking at the scribbles, neither looking at him but looking, he realized afterwards, at his thumb and forefinger holding the marker against the white board - was somewhat disturbing. He wondered what she was thinking about; he wondered but he did not want to know.
Yes, he remembered well. There was not one day that wouldn’t go by that he didn’t think of her. It is as if his head had a hatch that opened to the inside and it was so full of her that he couldn’t open the hatch anymore to let her go, he thought, while leaning against the Arch of Titus and feeling the small medal he had around his neck: together with a crucifix his grandmother had given him and the figure of the Virgin Mary given to him by his mother, both on the day of his First Communion and both blessed by a now dead Pope, on a forgotten Sunday, many years ago, on St. Peter’s Square, there was this half of a yin-yang medallion. He had found it inside an envelope, inside an old shoe box, when doing a general cleaning to his papers, a couple of days ago. It was from her, from long ago. The paper, now yellow with the corners curled, still had her lips, or the ghost of her lips, marked in a faint red, a hint of Chanel no.5 could be imagined and a calligraphy that spelled: “until we meet again”.
He moved on, closing the notebook so full of her. He couldn’t wait … Rome couldn’t wait.
Wonderful writing you two <3