Archive for November, 2004


Fugue

***

I keep pushing because I’m know there’s something under there, I know there is something just out of reach that I can get to, if I’m only not afraid long enough to pull it out. It comes through in dreams, in half formed sobs, in nameless achings. It tells me I belong somewhere I hate, somewhere I can’t understand. This is how it comes out-

In the breathless waking in the morning grayness, sheets tangled and sweaty, nobody there but myself, watching the blood disappear and feeling the pain fade. See, it wasn’t real…

In the realization that I have memories I cannot recall, if there can be such a thing.

In the taste of something that is familiar even though I’ve never tasted it before.it wasn’t real…

I keep pushing because I know there’s something there, something else, even if I don’t want to know what it is.

***

I’m so fucking cold. Just cold. I’m really tired of being cold. I’m tired of waking up in the middle of the night and being cold. I’m tired of waking up in the middle of the night screaming. I’m tired of waking up in the middle of the night. I’m tired of waking up. I’m tired.

This smart ass friend of mine suspects that she understands something of the nature of what makes me this way, what makes me incapable of feeling my own body for very long, unless I’m asleep, and I’m not sure that counts. I’ve asked her what she thinks, but she says it’s for me to figure out – she wouldn’t dare. She just gets it, she says.

Of course I’m better at figuring her out. I know why she doesn’t have bad dreams. She sees too many things all at once, she sees it all. Her pain comes from not being able to turn it off, to close her eyes. She reaches out and feels the pain of a hundred thousand souls, looking for the one true pulse and touch of the one she loves, who is out there. Somewhere. Unknown to her, but palpable, on a finer level.

She takes her hurt, and rearranges it, propitiates and propositions it, and its all laid out in neon patterns to her eyes.

She looks at it all in the face every day.

***

I’m sitting here in this sad little space waiting for something to break out. I don’t know what it is. I don’t know if I want to know, but I always feel it there, feel something there, right on the edges, on the sidelines, under the surface, something waiting to get out.

But usually I have it all under control.

But you, you know. Somehow you know what it is, but you won’t say. You have some knowledge you’re not giving away, but it’s not fair, because it’s some knowledge of me. Or not me, but of Things Like Me, of how things like this work. You have a key I would kill for, but you think it’s a key to only pain, and you won’t let me have it.

I can only imagine your nightmares, except you don’t seem to have any. But you should, you ought to. Maybe yours just aren’t as loud, because you know a control I never learned.

***

Suddenly I’m hungry. Silly really. I woke up, after forcing eight hours of sleep on myself, and stayed in bed as long as I could. I got up, made coffee, drank coffee, got by for fourteen hours on just the calories from the milk I added and sheer stubborness.

And now I’m hungry. I stand in the kitchen and eat crackers and cheese standing up, dropping cheese on myself, like I’m starving. I eat cold meat leftover from last weekend. I drink out of the milk carton. I eat ice cream from the freezer, standing up. I clutch the carrots like I haven’t eaten in days.

I have, but I feel like I haven’t.

I don’t know why I’ve been doing this to myself, this not eating. I like the way the hunger makes me feel, makes my belly curl in on itself, makes my sight strange and my fingers stranger, makes my body further away from me.

Maybe if I don’t feed it it will just go away.

So today I’m thinking about signing up for Grad Poetry Writing Workshop for next semester. This terrifies me. I took Fiction and Verse Writing from Prof. Baseball at Montevallo in probably 92 or so, and what ended up happening was something like stage fright. I don’t think I wrote a single poem while I was in that class. I brought old poems to class, edited a few maybe, made the occasional comment on other people’s stuff, and was mostly baffled about the Process of Writing Poetry. I did write one original thing in that class — the first and last short story I’ve ever done (excepting the Duran Duran fantasy and slash fic I used to write when I was 12-ish and before I knew that stuff like that had a name. I used to do awful things to Simon Le Bon on looseleaf paper. I burned all of that when I was … probably twelve or thirteen.)

I’m afraid of a repeat. I’m afraid of putting the Muse to the Test. I don’t know and have never known how to construct a poem outside of that manic flow of whatever that hits. I recognize this as a problem and as totally fucking retarded, but that’s where I’m at. And I’m quite frankly mortified by the idea of exposing stuff I write to the “suggestions” of others. Especially if this class turns out like every other class and has its share of total fucking morons in it. There’s something modest, and virginal, and tentative, about writing poetry for me. I have to writing poetry the attitude that good little christian girls have toward sex. Twisted. Hard to explain.

So there’s fear of that. But this is something I need to do.

***

I was thinking today about the time I went to visit my friend Claudia in Germany, when I was about twelve. (It seems like everything I thought about today tied into Roughly That Time Frame). I was thinking about, of all things, how my dad’s voice sounded on the phone when he called me about five weeks into my stay in Rheinfelden. Of course Claudia’s family spoke English around me, but they also spoke German around me too, and five weeks of being surrounded by the tones and accents and pitches and crescendoes of German had tuned my ear a different way. I wasn’t speaking it, of course, I never could, despite the later three year stint in country, but I could understand *some* and read some.

Continue reading