Bones, Like Me
It is dark & windy in Houston today & being so far from downtown feels a lot like vacation. I am sitting in Michelle’s kitchen typing on my typewriter with my sunglasses on & it’s one of those things where there’s nothing left you can think to do but have another cigarette. Last night the prospect of death came upon me but only as the least of solutions — the last of solutions — the very last item on the itinerary, naturally, & never to be further down the list than that.
I ran shop the while, thinking it may not be my face that moves someone to kiss it but rather that she simply enjoys the movement towards a face, that she simply enjoys the posture of love-making — lifting her shoulders, tucking her elbows close in a hug about her diaphragm — any face, & so I tore off the black rubber bracelet she said had come to her from a man who was like the devil, then gave me, & I threw it into a wastebasket in the men’s room. & I ran home & snapped the wood-board painting I’d made senior year of high school — with its naked lean angel-headed hipsters flying about with sharp angles on their bodies, a vomiting child in a purple hooded sweater, a sheep in a top hat, blue clouds over an orange sunset — that, lying in bed beneath it, I told her was hers. Destruction is one thing, but destruction of one’s own treasured creations? It felt so… artistic! The feeling of an instance’s being more important than even those objects that significantly inhabit the instance — in the fire of it, everything must go. Like god, I gazed upon what I had done — the poor jagged quadrants of the painting humped like slats on the wood floor — & saw that it was good. & so I woke this morning & soberly broke another piece in two.
I drove down to Agora, the cafe, & yelled with Walt at a drugged & long-gone bum who’d been kicked out & who was, at that moment, pissing not a foot away from Walt’s driver-side door:
”Are you pissing on my car?”
”Hey, what are you doing! Get it together, man!”
& the man looks us square in the eyes as he zips up his fly & two drops of urine take to the ground & he makes his way on the sidewalk toward our table on the patio:
”I didn’t piss on yr car,” real scruffy, the way a mouth gets when it’s on the verge of vomiting but is instead speaking, “I-I’m sorry, man! I was pissing on the curb, I swear.” He reaches out a hand to take Walt’s, “I’m the drudge of society, I’m stuck shit at the bottom, man, I’m sorry… I’m the drudge of society, man…”
”Yeah, I can see that…”
On the way to IKEA with Michelle & Vivian (who’ve been playing like two lesbians shopping together all afternoon), I roll up a spliff in the car & my sunglasses play against the slight tint of the windows, turning it into one film of iridescents — you know the ones — indigo & violet & gold & clear — so the sky backdrops like some great trip of the mood. We take the escalators up to the cafeteria & I devise a way to get the 15-meatball combo while only paying for the 10-meatball plate. The eaters seated about us are, presumably, all in process of furnishing a newer environment — turning a page on the chapter, so to speak — we swear we could all be in an airport together. There is a woman walking around in a — let me tell you — clown costume so SUBTLE that we at first wonder if she’s really a crazy person in her every day-wear. On our way out, I see her performing magic tricks for the children.
Michelle & Vivian & I drive to Home Depot to buy some painting materials. Vivian & I aren’t the ones who need the painting materials, so we leave Michelle to discuss the rare topic of mini-blinds & plan to purchase a fancy window only to store it in a closet, leaning against a wall. Vivian wants to buy a cactus, but there are none in the landscaping/greenery department & on the way back inside, the power has gone out in half the warehouse & a siren is pulsing.
At Michelle’s the wind is picking upward & doors swing & slam as if to keep time. It is chilly & this suburb reminds me of Plano. We film a video of her painting skylines on large wood-boards, giggling back pizza & sceletium tea, & mid-way through the recording there is, typed, on my typewriter’s black roller, in white correction ink: “I see your skin — I know your skin. But I want your bones. Do you have bones, like me?”
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