I went combing through the archives because I had nothing better to do but rehash old words I had written years ago. It was bleak. Looking back at my dreams with that long look of pity in my eye. Oh. I could have done better. I could have tried harder. I could have dreamed bigger. I could have written more. I can always write more. And more. And more. Forever and ever. These words are like a river, and I am floating lazily down their back, hoping one day to drown inside of them, in bliss and asphyxiation.
I have said so many seemingly shocking things that I no longer have a barometer for what is and isn’t interesting. The hum of my voice as it leaves my mouth has always been monotonous, which is why instead of speaking I stare blankly just past the horizon. I wonder what is out there. I wonder what I haven’t seen yet. I wonder what is blatant and blaring and gauche over there. Here? Nothing is very scandalous. People politely fuck each other and fuck each other over, and it’s fine. It’s a tempered status quo. We’ve gotten used to it. The knock down, drag out fights are nothing worth nodding at any more – just let those people live their peace which is also their violence. That’s none of our business. I keep looking beyond, slightly squinting. Maybe if I stare at the sun too long, I’ll go blind, and then I can write beautiful poems about what it must feel like to still see. No. That is self indulgent. Mustn’t self indulge. Must be a natural beauty after spending hundreds of dollars on powders and creams and lotions. That is the only way to cope with this. Must let my dreams fade into the background and then completely forget about them so that I can continue to live in this landscape which is dotted with other women who are exactly, down to the fingernails, like me. Must be okay with it. I am okay with it. I am okay with being here. I am keeping my head down and being here. I just wish that it made for less boring prose. Being surrounded by like minded peers who value the same things as I do sure makes me feel content, but who wants to read about that? Where’s the war these days? How am I supposed to sell magazines when all we have is peace among nations? Why do my dreams die in the absence of violence? I have been conditioned to be a creature of survival. I will always strive to be the fittest, but once I am the fittest – then what? The chore of world domination? Yawn. I want to feel small again, like I can slip between the cracks, beneath the pavement, into the gutter, back towards the ocean, where it is clean and warm and I can waft away into some cinematic ether. It would be nice to know that everything is going to be okay. Instead, I know that everything is good enough, it’s eh, it’ll do. But it could be better. And it won’t be, because as soon as it’s better, there will be some better better just out of arm’s reach. Why are my arms so short. Why is my imagination so small. Why am I trapped inside the cage of a dream that wasn’t big enough. Why didn’t I dream for the entire world to be mine? I mean, I don’t want it, but it would be nice to at least have the option to have it. To say no. To look lofty, alit on some moral high horse, a champion of the people, with a sword that is on fire and my hair looking good. That would be nice. Is that my dream? To be the rebel, vindicated? Revolution, attained? Ugh, but if I attain revolution, then what do I revolt against if not my own revolution. Or – do I just keep turning, all the time. I can stand still on this planet for twenty for hours and that is enough of a revolution for me. That is enough of a dream achieved. I have done it. I have accomplished the revolution by sitting still for twenty four hours. Hooray for me. I should write about that. Right?
I haven’t cried. Am I supposed to cry? I don’t really feel like it. But that’s what I usually do. So why haven’t I cried yet?
I’m shocked by my own indifference. Or, is this indifference? Or is everything exactly the same as before, so why should staying the course be marked as indifference. This is just me inside the ceaselessness of my reality. Sure, I miss his company, but it’s not searing or painful. I’m enjoying myself more these days, and when I’m ready to have company again every day, I’ll have it. I’m not worried about that.
Nothing about this is painful. It’s just…how it is. I don’t really mind. It’s not that I’m callous, it’s more that I’m experienced in the ever changing circumstances of my life, so things like this no longer shock me. I’m not jarred. I’m not thrown off balance. I’m just here, flowing with the go. Here today, gone tomorrow, or gone today, here tomorrow. Either way, I’ll continue plodding through life, having a generally good time, with or without him.
It’s so pleasantly mutual, too! Just magically, one day, “We’re not fucking anymore.”
We didn’t miss a beat. We just split in half and kept on moving. It’s so seamless that I almost feel suspicious. Sure, I can get lost in a maze of, “Did we actually even love each other?” But, eh, I know there’s no point in that. Sure, we loved each other. We clearly love each other enough to not ruin the other person’s day over it. In fact, there’s genuinely no love lost. It’s unreal! There was no fizzle, no pop, no overwhelming display of emotion. Nature just ran its course on our relationship, and there we go, off into the distance, separately, but not one bit worse for the wear.
Suddenly, he’s so far away. And I don’t even know how to feel about it. Although, if I were being honest with myself, he’s been far away for a long time, but he was still in the room for long enough that it was easy for me to not notice that he had already left. Or, maybe I knew all along that he was gone, and I was hoping that if he was here with me, eventually he’d come back. But he didn’t.
It’s hard to admit that I have born witness to the deterioration of someone I love. I didn’t do enough to stop it. No – that’s a trap. I did plenty, but my strategy was all wrong. It was enough, it just wasn’t the right way. I tried, but it still fell flat. Maybe I should have grabbed the bag of blow and flushed it down the toilet instead of sitting there every morning and letting him bump up before walking out the door. Maybe I should have grabbed him and shook him and demanded to know what the fuck happened in LA instead of holding him through the night. Maybe I should have driven him to the hills and said, “Okay, are you ready?” after he asked me to shoot him in the head. Instead of recoiling and saying, “Don’t say that!” Maybe I should have fought harder, even though I know that fighting harder would have taken us down an unretractable road of physical violence that I’ve always been trying to avoid. Instead, I let thing slip through my grip, which wasn’t very firm to begin with because I was afraid of leaving bruises.
He’s gone now. Just like that. I don’t know to where, or to whom, but it’s not here with me. I am empty, but that’s much better than being filled with regret. In my mind, he is flying, which is why I don’t dare to call, in case in reality he is back in the dirt.
I was talking to a friend about a particular love interest of mine, and she said approvingly, “Do it. You’d make a great power couple.”
I bristled at that deliberation, “Any couple I’m in is a power couple because I’m in it.”
This relationship isn’t working out for him.
Damn, that sucks. He wafts away from me in the night, splayed lonely across my bed as I watch from my perch and reach out and want. I tried to give him the world, and instead we’re back at square one, which is distant and filthy and uncomfortable and full of broken glass.
I wonder what I could have done differently. Nothing. I take a peek inside my heart and am not surprised to realize that there is nothing left inside me that I could possibly give to him. I gave him everything. All the love in my heart. It wasn’t enough. And I knew it. I knew it wouldn’t be enough love for him, but I gave it to him anyways because, fuck, I had to at least try, right?
Will anything ever work out for him? I don’t think I’ll get to know the answer to that. He’s onto the next one by now, which is a definition of insanity. The next one will be just like me, some haphazard woman dazzled by dick and good looks, tripping and falling her way into would-be sainthood. If only I could have saved him. I am not the one. I look nothing like Jesus’s son, nor do I want to. I just have to accept it now: I am not the child of salvation that I had hoped I was. I am merely another person, here now, gone tomorrow, irrelevant in the echelons of time, but smiling nonetheless.
I can’t take him with me. But if I could, I would carry him across the mountains of time and through the desert of our despair, to some heretofore unseen paradise, a place where my love could be enough for him, and then we would be happy.
We’re both miserable. As we sit here, all pretty, drunk and done with fucking, and the world’s at our feet, but we’re both miserable. There’s something so cliche about it, about being young and in love and so good looking and still hating every minute of it. We listened to too much Nirvana when we were younger, didn’t we?
I think we’re becoming comfortable with each other’s self loathing. It’s permeated the atmosphere of this entire relationship. I could sit inside of it for weeks at a time if I didn’t have to get up and go to work. But I have to go to work.
Neither of us want to be here, but while we’re here, we might as well be in bed together, doing nothing at all, wasting away. There’s something about this that could be romantic. Or strangely beautiful if it were cast slightly in blue light and splayed across some television screen. We languish cinematically, although whenever anyone else sees us I can sniff out their disdain for our utter sloth and resentment for the entire set up of the society we live in.
I would like to break free, but freedom, too, is revolting its own special way. It is easier to die here in his arms than to grab his hand and pull him into some terrific tomorrow. I prefer the terror of what we already have, even if it is slowly pulling us apart and breaking us into pieces.
I write poems about him so that we can feel justified in our codependent self defeat, and I hope no one can see the ugly and the worms that are festering inside us that make us not as elevated as we feel but more among the dirt with the corpses.