Congratulations!! I'm proud of you. Do you want to do it? Should we visit first? I keep on trying to remember that my life is real, that our life is real and that uprooting it would be hard, painful even. But also the second I met you I knew I'd go places for you, with you. You've never seen me out of my element though, I mean really out and it scares me to think what that would look like.
I watched the Basquiat documentary the other night and was overwhelmed by his competitive and uncompromising nature. His ex girlfriend spoke about him with admiration and distance: "we agreed that he would work and I would paint." (my worst nightmare/ultimate fantasy). We'll talk about it/that more. This is now:
Past the solstice and onto new terrain. I don’t turn the light on because I want to stay in a clean dream state away from the mind and the constant sun. Have you ever seen a party last till the end of the world? Seen the high heels get flung about and the cakes begin to melt? Have you ever stolen a glance at a caterer in a suit and then kissed her behind a fridge?
The question so often becomes, how do I share my ugliness with you?
I’m keeping my panties on. I’m listening to Ed Sheeran naked while drinking coffee. I want to feel my body up against itself, flourishing, twisting, aching for something new. I’m not saying I’m good. I’m saying I’m in love with the shape of you. I’m getting attached. To Cleveland, to you, to myself.
I have been hurt. I have also been left and I still wonder: Is my heart too big? Is my brain too young? Is my body too strong? Are my eyes deceiving me? Is there something about me that says, “leave me. I can take it.”
I think you should know that there’s something about you which has to do with a lot of fantasies that I’ve had for a long time which freaks me out a little and it freaks me out, still. So what I’m saying is that I’ll just keep listening and pretending I don’t have legs, that I’m a mermaid the the Bering Sea, or a centaur three thousand years ago or Wonder Woman.
I texted E about you and this new opportunity of yours because he knows how I’ve been hurt. He’s seen my fucked up on the couch watching Forrest Gump, walking the streets in my nightgown and rain boots and doubled over at the kitchen table weeping at 9am. I know you have too, but I had to phone a friend.
“Just keep doing what you’re doing,” he said.
I’ve always been a housewife and a cowboy. I want to bake you a chicken at night then drive five hundred miles by myself the next day to sit on the edge of a canyon and smoke a cigarette. I want to pick out wallpaper one day and sell all my belongings the next. I want to read the Runaway Bunny at 6pm and Blood Meridian at ten.
Listening to old time country music in a bed that’s neither here nor there, neither home nor away, in a city that’s neither foreign nor familiar, with a body that’s mine but also yours, that belongs to everyone I’ve ever loved. It’s in these moments that I ask myself, “what would Dolly Parton do?”
Here you come again
Just when I begin to get myself together
You waltz right through the door
I have built so many walls. I like them and you're breaking through them. Do you know how the scar tissues of my heart have made it pump twice the bloody feeling in half the time? Call me Heartbreak Girl. That’s my superpower. But I don’t want to break anymore. It takes so much time to heal a heart on your own.