When a woman lays down her soul you better shut up and listen. Snap-to boy and pay attention to the beauty she emotes. Pale yellow-gold washes away morphing into somber blue—her heartbeat is an artist’s kaleidoscope of color swirling all around you.
Watch her cry. Watch her plead. Watch her laugh and bounce for you. Silly boy, watch her as her love crashes to her feet. Close your mouth; hush your empty complaints and stare in wonder. Be dazzled and charmed and sweetly aware. Then kiss her like you mean it.
Because you should…you should always mean it.
“What’s up?” he texts, because no one really talks anymore. People just speak in little bleeps, tweets, in meaningless texts sent across an ocean…across a continent…across a city. I work the buttons, thumbs flying. Why not? I’m an American girl, it’s what we do. “I’m working,” I say. But isn’t true. I challenge him to figure it out.
He writes back, “Lol. You don’t work.” I frown, “I’m writing. What do you want?” He responds bitterly, “Another horrible poem about me?” I smile weakly, thumbs working, “Never. You’re dead to me.” It’s a lie. We both know it. He’s more alive to me than flowers swaying in a cool breeze under a clear blue sky. But I won’t say that. I can’t say that. First rule of war: Never Confess.
He responds with false bravado. I knew he would. “I know you are, they’re all about me.” I snap my phone closed. Fuck him. No response is an answer, too. I sit back and stare at the monitor. Stare at the white screen, the insertion point blinking expectantly. He’d accuse me of being passive-aggressive again. Maybe I am. Maybe I’m just a sinking ship…the last passenger on the Titanic praying for a life jacket.
Silly boys with silly toys and pious thoughts lure me. Beckon as surely as the muse feeding a Greek God grapes and ambrosia. White and pasty boys with intangible dreams and fears big enough to block out the sun cripple me. Aim their arrows and penetrate deep. I miss his voice. I miss his randy smile, the sparkle in his eyes just before he flashed me his ass.
It all slips away. A sea of empty emails, deleted texts, and truths never uttered. He writes the most amazing things. Deranged things. He feels so much he has to drink to numb the sensation. He’s toxic. Cut him loose.
When a woman offers hope, offers home you should take it. A gift so freely given can never be replaced. When she whispers soft and low with heated breath and welcomes you inside it’s rude not to dive right in. Tread her waters. Milk her breasts and savor the sweet. Take and take and give.
I thought I could save him. I should have saved myself.
A story should have a plot…a point at the very least. What good are bunch of rambling descriptions with no purpose? A poem can flow free. It can swirl the English language into any shape. It can emote and bleed and cry and scream and cum. But a story? What can a story do save narrate? More showing, less telling! Give the characters dialog you dumb ninny.
I curse the blank screen. Close my eyes and drift away. Think of pretty things that bring joy, bring peace. I remember the feel of smooth skin on smooth skin…the feel of hardness slipping against my softness. I sigh and think of warm sunny skies and soft wind…running barefoot through tall grass. So many gifts have formed my life. So many opportunities wasted…
Ms. Olliffe is running American week, wielding talent with the careful precision of a sculptor. She writes the damndest things in tribute to each author. Who will stand and give her tribute? I can’t explain the thoughts this experiment have forged inside of me…I read the stories with a tinge of jealousy. I’ll never enjoy the talent they exude, never grab someone by the nuts with my words. I’m just a hack with a penchant for drama.
The insertion point still winks at me, knowing my dirty secrets. It knows the shit I’ve written…and hidden, buried in a folder never to see the light of day. It knows how I’ve cried and hurt and bled. It knows my rage and weaknesses. It’s a bitch—a blinking bitch who mocks me.
When we first met he called me an Aztec Princess. When he loved me he called me Kitten. When he said good-bye I was just plain old Kat. It’s funny the names we give each other—just labels for promises kept, promises broken.
I should really write something meaningful, something profound. I should quit this writer’s block, this rambling line of bullshit and really say something. But words escape me. This wordsmith has lost her sword. I read American week and hang my head in shame. I read his stories and want to scratch out my eyes. I read published novels and think, “I write better than that!”
I’m a tangled mess of contradictions and unfulfilled potential. I am a coward. I’m far too self-centered—but it’s part of my charm. Every once in awhile though, I look outside my dirty windows and see something amazing…I think Mark Kerstetter is amazing. Not only is he white and pasty, but he writes with grit. Grit is awesome.
("You know who" has grit. He has pain that he could bottle and sell and make a mint on. It’s what I noticed first. Is it insane to fall in love with a man because of his writing? He never believed me when I championed his craft. He dismissed me as being biased.
He’s an idiot.)
I hope Mark knows that he’s brilliant. It’s tragic for writers to open a vein and yet not see the power of their words. And yet…they all seem to do it. His work, in particular, hit me hard. I wanted to say in the thread, but couldn’t find the words. It seemed so shallow and pointless to write a passing, “Wow that was fantastic!” When the truth is that his description of the death of a relationship sent me spiraling into depression and searching out his blog. You see? A pat response was inadequate.
I never read his work before. Sure, I know who he is in a, “Oh I’ve seen him post.” Or, “Oh, I’ve heard he’s dark, but brilliant,” kind of way. But I don’t know him and have never followed him. Imagine my surprise when his words gave me chills.
Mark reminds me too much of the one I can’t forget. I doubt if I read his blog again. Ah sweet, sweet neurosis…my old friend. I should stop this whining drivel and write something coherent. But then…I never do the things I should.
You might say, “Hey Kat, you said you’d never write about him again…or at least not post it.” You might say, “Time to be slapped, chicka!” But you’d be wrong. It is my earnest opinion that this is more about my insanity, writer’s block, and addiction to emotionally unavailable men than anything else.
That and a lesson to men… They need to know that women are Goddesses. You read that right. We are. And the things we give are surreal, more perfect and beautiful than a million twinkling stars in a blackened sky. On your knees boys and worship us. ;)