Of a hustler. Of a-Of a hustler.
Posts tagged writing.
“Chances Are” still knocks the wind out of me. It’s been so long and we’re so far removed, but that song is full of ghosts that were ghosts in the first place. I hear those piano chords, and I can’t help it, and then I get angry that I can’t help it, and then I get skeptical of ever being able to help it, and then I get indignant at not feeling capable of helping it, and then I get sad at feeling so powerless to help it, and then I’m crying for a lot of reasons, and I’m not sure if that makes it better or worse. Is confusion preferable to clarity, however cold, cruel, or deluded the latter might be? I wonder if it’ll ever go away, that shallow inlet somewhere in my lungs that immediately drains when Johnny Mathis sings. You haunt that song, but if anyone came out of this feeling like a ghost, it was always, is always me.
Why did I write it down? In order to remember, of course, but exactly what was it I wanted to remember? How much of it actually happened? Did any of it? Why do I keep a notebook at all? It is easy to deceive oneself on all those scores. The impulse to write things down is a peculiarly compulsive one, inexplicable to those who do not share it, useful only accidentally, only secondarily, in the way that any compulsion tries to justify itself. I suppose that it begins or does not begin in the cradle. Although I have felt compelled to write things down since I was five years old, I doubt that my daughter ever will, for she is a singularly blessed and accepting child, delighted with life exactly as life presents itself to her, unafraid to go to sleep and unafraid to wake up. Keepers of private notebooks are a different breed altogether, lonely and resistant rearrangers of things, anxious malcontents, children afflicted apparently at birth with some presentiment of loss.
God I want you
in some primal, wild way
animals want each other.
Untamed and full of teeth.
God I want you,
In some chaste, Victorian way.
A glimpse of your ankle
just kills me.
Spent a week in the city. Talked to no one until last day. Asked a girl if she wanted to go throw rocks or something into the ocean. She said no and her nose was not pretty. Went anyway. Licked the wind. Tastes like salt and rotten chocolate. Spent Monday on three airplanes flying back. A baby girl sat in the window seat and cut her fingers on a catalog. Forgot the color of my luggage. Spent Tuesday asleep. And Wednesday and Thursday. Spent March awake. Spent two years waiting for some man to propose to this girl I knew so I could be done with it. I’m done with it.
Nights when I get home alone, for whatever reason I am thinking There are a certain type of people cut from a cloth made to love, and usually, on those nights, I am sad, because I’m fairly certain I was not cut from the imaginary cloth that I believe exists. Sometimes I am thinking about stopping into a bar by myself, to grab a drink and a small bite, and then I remember it is Saturday night, and the bars will probably be crowded, and even if they weren’t, I don’t have a book with me, which means what? I’ll have to sit there, grounded in the quiet reality that is dinner alone, nothing to do but think my thoughts and, most likely, be sad. I don’t know when I got this way, but I also can’t remember being any other way. I don’t want people to love me, and I don’t want to have a million friends. But I guess I do want a person with whom I can feel alone, someone that, being around them, might make feel alone and in company, and that seems so hard to do. I don’t know if I’ll ever do it. I don’t know if I’m capable.
Someone once called me “sadly beautiful,” and at the time I thought he was maybe crazy, but now I know exactly what he meant.
It’s just so strange.
You used to love me,
and now you’re a stranger
who happens to know all
of my secrets.
Not that I am losing my grip: I am just tired of summer.
You reach for a shirt in a drawer and the day is wasted.
If only winter were here for snow to smother
all these streets, these humans; but first, the blasted
green. I would sleep in my clothes or just pluck a borrowed
book, while what’s left of the year’s slack rhythm,
like a dog abandoning its blind owner,
crosses the road at the usual zebra. Freedom
is when you forget the spelling of the tyrant’s name
and your mouth’s saliva is sweeter than Persian pie,
and though your brain is wrung tight as the horn of a ram
nothing drops from your pale-blue eye.
I feel bizarrely sexy in a green cotton onesie, like it’s just enough coverage to free me of some self-consciousness, but it’s one piece and thin and clings to my body, so I feel that innermost joy one feels being naked. I find myself reveling in the relative thickness of my shape, thickness that this onesie both reveals with a simple honesty in which I don’t usually partake and adores, the darkness of the color lapping up the harsh edge of shadows and making the lilt of the curves seem somehow soft and sweet. I look like a child in an old Western movie, running around on the farm and slopping freshly churned milk all over my too-big boots in the haste of carting it from the barn to the house, but I feel not much less sultry than when I’m wearing a silk nightgown.