On my walk with the camera I had lost my cable release. The golden cemetery island in the air went unphotographed. At first, I was distressed not by my loss of cable per se, but of the cable as witness to one day two years ago in winter—the grey, mild, mistletoe-winter, a winter without abnormalities—when we wandered through the streets, thinking about ‘next year’ and ‘in two years’ and the ‘future’ in general and I bought it at a shop with used camera accessories, to replace a lost one. We both ran our fingers through the slack knot of cable releases, which lay in a basket, twisted into one another like half-hibernating, languid, fearless snakelets, and M. eventually pulled out this especially robust, light-grey coated one, which I took and used and now had lost. My distress over the cable falls under one of the potential curses of bereavement that I gradually became familiar with: weighting objects qua testimony. The attribution of participation in a moment past. A small piece of back-then, which should act as if it could moor the past tense onto the broken-off banks of the present. Idle lists of a forlornness that knows not what to do with itself.”
Mental diagnosis felt like an act. A script I shouldn’t have played into. Some do. Some need to. Those whose function cannot find place. Like mine at the time. But I was passing through—turbulent heartbreaks, growing pains, clashes with Hims—and mistook role for reality. I overthought my relation to it, that joy and suffering, and tied it to a being beyond. I regret that now. Or at least can see it as it was: seeking, clenching, grasping. Am I nothing more than a need to reach? Maybe. I’m human. Some childlike essence that shows in contours when ignoring and blurring details of pores. Take off my glasses and focus on the obscure. The fuzz. That uncertainty between me and it. Subject in/to object. Still disoriented in space, lost along the way, I may trip a few times too many, but that’s okay. Because it’s only and not me at all.
A teary night. Heartbroken morning. Put on some tea and sat. Forced myself out the apartment. Biked to the studio. On my way, I noticed a smashed vase in the gutter. Like broken bubbles. The sun hit those curves and even the sharp edges reflected softness into my eyes. It was just a brief glimpse. Thought about stopping to take a photo, to capture the feeling—shattered. With puffy eyes that glistened like all those pieces. But I was late, so I sped past and thought I’d return later. I practiced. Got coffee with some others. Listened to them. We spoke in and out the night before. Removed myself from it. That thisness. And then, as I smiled and waved goodbye, I decided to bike back to that glossy mess and take a photograph, but by the time I returned, it had been swept away. Only one shard remained.
What I really wanted to say was that a monster is not such a terrible thing to be. From the Latin root monstrum, a divine messenger of catastrophe, then adapted by the Old French to mean an animal a myriad of origins: centaur, griffin, satyr. To be a monster is to be a hybrid signal, a lighthouse: both shelter and warning at once.”
On Earth We’re Briefly Gorgeous
maybe too soon to understand
maybe each used other as a means to our own misguidance
maybe we weren’t ready for It
maybe I like to clean up just to make a mess
impossible to see before a turn
to name the before
could have sworn we felt without words
maybe we’ll recollect these scattered selves,
restrengthen the illusion
becoming ends in and of ourselves.
find that place there’s nowhere else to go,
for now just keep going and going
maybe I think what may be too much.
certainly we’ll never know.
never been left with tact
carried on a continuum of
“she’s beautiful, but…”
missed the point
trying to hold a line
in the lies
we tell self
i’ll become your
leave for the quiet
only to learn
Sometimes old Spotify playlists do it. Replay stories, queue my mind through a loop. We had a time, I wish we could stay in. Shuffle. Breathe in the cold black space with the glistening edges. Shuffle. Every little lie in this world comes from dividing. Say you’re my lover. Say you’re my homie. Tilt my chin back, slit my throat, take a bath in my blood, get to know me. Shuffle. En tus ojos me desvelo y tus labios me buscan en la oscuridad como relaciones de la noche. Shuffle. These songs make me want to reach for you. Pause. Strangers’ smiles remind me: I used to push and pull, but I can be still. Self-induced lovelessness doesn’t last forever. Neither do rings on fingers or ink on paper. We can recreate how we relate. The simplicity of a daily choice. You’ve got it for one day, man. I used to search for the letters of his name, wait for his footsteps, buy time with food and wine, come and go as he pleased, but now we’re free from that parentheses.