Looking for kindred spirits.
Frail girl, naked or half, laid down by invisible hands. In the woods, in a bathtub, on a beach of pebbles. Sometimes across her own bed. Shy, demure glances away from the camera. A smile. An air of serenity. Sometimes a hint of sadness. A pale, broken doll. The same plot, repeated over and over. And I feel so gross for wanting to fit the storyline. I’ve been fed that this is the way I ought to be wanted. I never aimed to be the magazines. I always aimed to be this. Art. Literature. Indie films. A thousand little frames in which thick legs and dark skin couldn’t fit. A thousand frames from which my limb stuck out because my looks of defiance weren’t a come-hither, weren’t a fuck-me. They were a fuck-you. Fuck you for making me invisible, and still, starving to take less space. Fuck you for inviting me to aspire to exploitation. Fuck you for inciting me to be one of your little fantasies of frail helpless girls lost in the forest, only to be saved by your hands. My body is a weapon to be used against you. Do not think that I’m docile, that you’ve convinced me. I listen to you, and I watch you, and I read you still — but I’m still out to destroy you in ways you couldn’t imagine.
I want arrows and daggers tattooed on me.
Let me weaponize my body.
I should write more. I shouldn’t breathe gazoline quite so deeply. I should keep hope in small jars for days like these.
The waters keep rising and one day they’re going to submerge everything. Even the cemeteries. And you can move the people, but you can’t uproot history. All past lives: drowned at sea.
Alien skin, foreign body. I feel so cruelly hyperaware and so incredibly disconnected the vessel I live in. I’m still trying to reclaim the territory. I can’t tell if I’m supposed to be fighting or to be letting go of it. Two schools of thought leading a quiet battle. I look at my limbs and think, "This much is mine." I look at my limbs and think, "Is anything ever owned?"
I want an apartment to keep fresh flowers in, in an almost ugly vase I can’t bear to leave empty. I’ll push it out of sight when it’s not full — down in a cupboard it’ll go. I want sunlight to filter in through the blinds, at some point or another. I want to leave books and paper everywhere, even when it’s a little unsightly, even when it makes me look like a mad professor in a bad movie. I want to borrow my mother’s espresso machine, and never return it, so I can have my strong coffee in the morning, easy. I want a place to call my own, where solitude is pure and true. I want a place I can welcome my friends in and play hostess. I want to the permission to make my home theirs for an evening. They can open the closets and the cabinets — and every little thing, every little secret, every little treasure will be mine to give away. And the air will be sweet. And the food will be good. And I’ll call it home, with a tenderness I’ve never shown for the places where I’ve grown.
Friday night crying on your bed. I think my loneliness has a name. I know that yours burns my throat. I can finally feel what it would feel like to lose my childhood home — I don’t have one, I just have you. A lifesaver. How can I stay in a present from which you are absent even when you sit next to me? Your hands do not teach me how. I am making an island of myself so I don’t ever have to learn how. Miles away already. Move out of state. Move out of the country. You can’t be much further from me. Work out the details and the dynamics. I’m making myself an island so I don’t really have to learn how. I wish I could have told you — I still am not sure I know how to love you. Friday night, crying in your bed, so I could remember how. I’ve stopped so I could forget how. I’m making myself an island.
Still fighting numbness.
I never want to sleep, but I also never want to be awake. I don’t feel very anchored or connected or real lately, which is terrifying for a lot of reasons. I can feel the pull of nothingness, like a fucking black hole ready to swallow me whole. And I can almost taste the sweetness of surrendering on my tongue. The warmth of feeling completely annihilated. The comfort of the bottom. The familiarity of pain.
But I fight still. I get my little robot limbs in motion and power through. I don’t know how. I’m superbly functional, and nobody suspects a damn thing. I think there’s something vacant in my eyes, but it’s college. Everyone’s tired for a reason or another. I’m a robot amongst cyborgs. I still perform at high level, and I get praised for things I’m surprised ever got done. I don’t feel human. I can only drag myself out of bed through divine intervention. Still making A’s though. Ain’t that something. But it means nothing.
And I’m not even sure fighting is a choice. I always tell people I pick my battles, without ever telling them most of my battles pick me. Bodies struggle against death always. My mind struggles against decay. I fight without thinking. I probably fight in my sleep. I can’t think of other explanations to restless nights and rest-deprived mornings. And so there’s hope — perhaps it’s the hope that drives me insane.
I can never really surrender. I can never fully fall.
I hover just a few inches above the abyss on Tuesday mornings.
Just me and my robot limbs.
It’s so incredible how you can watch people’s beauty unfold when they speak. There are people out there who are just amazing, even if they’re fucked up, even if they stand for things you can’t believe in. And it goes beyond pure goodness, beyond pure kindness — there’s just something precious and rare and whole about them that makes you want to stick around hours after you thought you’d leave. You show up to their doorstep years after you’d last seen each other and their new home is just like the old home. A place of light — light of day, lightness of heart. You watch old stuff and odd stuff, and you laugh laugh laugh.
What I’m trying to say is that sometimes, people are worth the time, the risk, and the effort. Even if you don’t want to trust anyone for a while. Even if you just want to avoid everyone for a while. And all you need is a small leap of faith.
I’m incredibly lonely again. I feel like an ocean trapped into a wire cage, an ocean held hostage into a shot glass. There’s a scream stuck in a place far more dangerous than my throat — I feel it swelling in my ribs, I hear the sound of crushing bones. Lonely in my ideas, lonely in my ambitions, lonely in my utopias and gambles and dreams and inclinations. Just an ocean amassing hollow interactions with people of former warmth and importance. And me, myself, I — just an ocean of low significance.