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Ms. Peach to You
So I’m single again. An interesting pursuit, singledom. After the breakup, it’s strange how you feel liberated and trapped at the same time. Now I can call whomever I wish to call; now I can go wherever I wish to go (not that I couldn’t before, but before, I worried about you); now I can do whatever I wish to do. But now I’m left wondering what I have which can be depended upon. I know this feeling will wear off; I know that I am going to be better than just fine. But it’ll be rough till then.
So you're home, for the first time in ages. We go though the cycle that we always go through; for an hour or so, we speak about nothing at all, but there's just enough innuendo in the conversation to bring us to a familiar place. Memories are pouring from both our months, and things get…difficult. I kick myself; I swore that this time was going to be different – it just wasn't going to happen. But it's too late from the moment we lay eyes upon each other – we are two people hopelessly lost, always have been and always will be.
Could you let down your hair/Be transparent for a while/Just a little while/So I can see if you’re human after all/Honesty is a hard attribute to find/When we all want to seem like/We’ve got it all figured out/So let me be the first to say that I/Don’t have a clue/Don’t have all the answers/Not trying to pretend like I do
How could I stand here with you/And not be moved by you/Would you tell me/How could it be/Any better than this/Cause you’re all I want/You’re all I need/You’re everything, everything/You’re all I want/You’re all I need/You’re everything, everything...
She writes me an email, so I feel compelled to write back. What’s up? Not much. How are you doing? Quite well, thanks. What’s happening this weekend? Um, play practice, hanging out, don’t really know yet. Did you two split yet? Yeah, couple days ago. How’s everything else? Just fine. Let me ask you a few questions, now. Do you really care about anything you’ve asked me? You say our relationship is superficial…so why are you perpetuating that? How much more noncommittal could such quasi-conversation be? I’m not expecting any answers. I’ve learned not to. It’s been a tough lesson.
After I hang up:
Listen to me, please. I know it’ll be hard, but I want you to drop this ridiculous act and really listen. You hate life because you’ve made a conscious choice to do so. You hate living because you hate everything that brings you love. You love me, I know it, you always have and will. But you’re fighting it, and it makes me so angry...why don’t you understand that I’m standing here in front of you, waiting for you to return to your wits? Maybe it’ll happen in the summertime. You were always better warm.
There you go again, making me feel inept, feel like I've failed before I started. Is nothing I do good enough for you? Why do you bounce from conclusion to conclusion? I need some reassurance here. Can't you offer me anything but this endless chastising? Don't you realize that the things you say validate/invalidate me? Two months ago: They'll both take you. One month ago: One of them will take you. Today: You should have tried harder. You never know with these selective places. (I'M LAUGHING AT YOU, STUPID GIRL: YOU AREN'T GOOD ENOUGH AND COULD NOT EVER BE)
With a word, I can make or break a life. I hate this feeling of gravity, the weight of choice heavy on my heart. Know that my intention is not to cause pain. Rather, it is to be…realistic. The truth is important; I have nothing but the truth on my mind. I don't think that I could manufacture some lie in this situation if I tried. I miss the way things used to be, one month and seven days ago. They aren't that way now…and nothing you could say will convince me otherwise. Again, I'm not being fatalistic…just terribly reasonable.
Memory. June, 2002. Brian and Brielle are two people in love. At 12:00 Brian picks Brielle up at her home, and takes her to his. Sometimes they wonder why it is they love each other. It’s difficult, truly loving; but, then again, nothing worth anything comes easily. In Brian’s kitchen, Brielle lets all her inhibitions slide from skin to floor. Two hours later, they’ve moved from kitchen, to living room, to basement, to bedroom. Two months later Brian and Brielle can’t think about each other without becoming angry. It’s over, she yells, and tears well in two sets of eyes.
Worth nothing, nothing, nothing, that’s me, that’s what I’ll always be...worth nothing, nothing, nothing. Can’t do anything properly, that’s me, can’t do anything properly. Can’t sing, can’t dance, can’t speak, can’t think, can’t hate, can’t love
that’s me and all I’m thinking is
can’t can’t can’t can’t can’t can’t can’t
never ever never ever never ever
And fear of writing these words outweighs truth, but I can’t care. I’m done with the emotion thing, done, done, done. Waiting for something to change, that’s me
happy, happy, happy?
And all I’m thinking is
never ever never ever never ever
Two more months and Brian and Brielle would give the world for just one phone call. Two semesters later – Brian’s with a girl he wishes had Brielle’s face; Brielle’s seeing Brian in every boy she kisses – but they both are very good pretenders, and they pretend things are all right. Two weeks go by and Brielle calls Brian. Two conversations later, Brian seizes this chance. Two minutes transpire and she’s over at his house. He opens the door – two seconds last lifetimes and she remembers what love is. Two moments and they both know their stories will never be separate.
So many smiles look upon me, eyes rich with memory. I'm sitting across from two pairs, now -- two sets which see me still as though not a day has gone by, no history has transpired. For the millionth -- billionth? -- time, I wonder how it is I stir (pause for thought) so many minds, hearts, people. You look up at me and speak silent volumes...I smile back, conveying little and meaning less. For a moment, I consider how things might have been, had I been touched, like you. It seems that very little hits me close to home. Very...little.
We had a conversation last night. A long, important, (I’d even venture to say) incredible conversation. I realized, in our first hour or so of talking about unimportant but entertaining things, how much I’d missed your insight into everything. Even when I had something stupid to say, you had something intelligent to offer, and I loved it. Then suddenly, with seemingly unwarranted gravity, you asked, “How have you been?” I paused, floundering, not knowing what to do. “I’ve been…well.” Then a hurried amendment -- no, I’ve not been well, not until this moment, not until I found something I’d lost.
Today I skipped school and spent my entire day with you. Boy, was it worth it. I haven’t had such a good day in a very long time. I remember one moment, when you said you’d pick up the tab – your voice got softer, smaller somehow – Hmm. These are the moments that make life worth living. I love discovering a person, finding out who someone really is behind the front we all put up, bringing out the best in someone. I am going to shatter your defenses, my dear, because that’s what I do. I’m terribly sorry about your luck.
I remember when I couldn't beg enough for you to call me. I remember when you didn't care; I remember when you led me along like a kitten on a string, I remember falling in step behind you with infinite care. But that ended when this began; now our roles are reversed, my ex-dearest. This weekend you called me a million times, left a million messages…and I ignored the ringing, erased your voice. You are nothing to me now, and I can see through everything you pretend to be (alcoholic, bipolar manic depressive). But I hope you keep calling…trading me.
I have a choice. A choice between old and new, I suppose. We spent the day together, but he called me three times that evening, drunk and missing me. I don't know why I'm hanging on to something that's so...flighty. It's the remembering that hurts the most, knowing what we used to be, wishing I hadn't thrown it away so carelessly. But - I looked across at you and felt something
stirring thickly in the air. One: Blonde hair, blue eyes, strong hands. Two: Dark hair, dark eyes, unbelievable smile. I'm left reflecting -
I make a good choice?
I'm horrible with names. I'll be out somewhere and suddenly hear, "Hey, Brittany!" I'll turn with a big cheesy grin
(that hides my panic - I have no clue who this is).
It always seems to happen when people congratulate me, too, which makes it even worse. Perhaps this is how politicians feel, shaking hands and smiling for the camera, accepting awards and faking friends. I ran into her in the parking lot of CVS -
damn I know that face
- and she says she wants to take me to breakfast. I agree, give her a hug, and stalk off, feeling terrible.
God, you're beautiful. Judging from your reaction to my comment, I don't think you've ever been told so in quite those words before. I can't say sexy, or hot...that cheapens you. Gorgeous - I sound like a teenybopper. But beautiful rolls off my tongue, resounds in your ears, rings with perfect truth. I told you about the picture, when I first saw you, and that sweet, careful smile was in your eyes. I am left wondering only why you didn't show up earlier. Would have saved me so much trouble. We are what we are, title or no. Simply we.
The weather's been getting much nicer around my quasi-city. I find it odd that this change is coinciding with other good things happening to me. Perhaps it's something in the heat which makes it easier to touch happiness, beauty...easier to touch a human heart. It's during times like these we all are compelled to leave our safe circles and reach out to another or even to ourselves. So for now I'll eye the thermometer, live something dangerous and exhilarating, forget what it is to be cold, what it is to be without you and the sun in my world.
Ah. The ex factor. She's an incredible person, and he's her ex-boyfriend. Granted, she dumped him. Granted, she's with someone new. But that does not change the way I feel - not horrible or terrible, but relatively unsure. I know how I react in situations like these...but I also know that I am not your typical female when it comes to affairs of the heart. I would brush it off, be unoffended, probably even joke with "the new girl", but she is not me, and I cannot wish she was.
I will not give this up. Absolutely not.
I'm waiting for the motivational portion of this sermon you're giving us. I'm quite certain there's a point buried somewhere in your incessant rambling, but to be honest, in my (perhaps limited? ha) intellectual capacity, I'm having trouble pinpointing it.
Respect for my elders has been ingrained in me, but often I wonder how far that rule extends. Where must one draw the line, when weighing superior and inferior?
Now you're equating handholding with sex, and I'm feeling a bit ill. Talk talk little parrot and say nothing at all -- I will quasi-listen. Through one ear, right out the other.
I am intrigued by you. I’m praying that both our collegiate dreams come true; you’ll be right across the Cambridge T from me. Perhaps then you’ll show me what’s beneath the person you put on display. I see glimpses of someone else under your facade (I’ve always been adept at that); you can’t hide from me much longer. I’m peeling the onion, so to speak. There is more to you, I believe, than even what you truly know, a person whom you speak very little about and reveal even less of. Don’t be afraid. I’m here, waiting to understand you.
How much of my lifetime, I wonder, has been wasted in this classroom? I’m looking for a cumulative total - 1/70th, perhaps, more, less? I am waiting to be moved (I feel like I do that far too much. Wait.) By some -thing, -one, waiting, waiting. I find myself motivated not to do something in particular, but instead to do anything...anything but sit at this desk and subject myself to the excruciating density of these people. I can think only of escaping this place, my ticket uncertain but please please please...for the love of (anything), don’t pass me over.
So my father says to me:
You need to stretch your hours at work, Brit.
I gape, openmouthed.
Dad, did you think I was joking when I said that I have rehearsal every single day this month?
I guess you’ll lose your car, then, if you can’t afford the insurance.
Trying to maintain a grip on rationality, I take a deep breath, and try a different approach.
Dad, I really do not have any available time. If I did, I’d
working more often.
I’m really thinking: Maybe if you were ever home, you would know that I’m always gone.
Sometimes I look at a person and think to myself, “Gee. I wonder what it must be like to live life in such a little bubble.” I always think that about Danielle, in particular. I wish that I could take a stroll through that mind. She’s...utterly unbelievable. She’s so blatantly idiotic, frustratingly oblivious, and frighteningly melodramatic, yet somehow she’s been admitted to one of the nation’s most prestigious and selective universities. I’m not sure if that’s a good or a bad thing; it lessens my faith in the admissions system yet reassures me that I will indeed get in.
You, darling, are reading these as I write them, probably waiting to be astounded. I’m sorry if I disappoint; sometimes I get muddled, and forget to say things properly. Strange for a state champion speechie, isn’t it? It’s odd, though, how moments of complete honesty and total clarity are so mutually inclusive (in my case). I’ve never tripped over a word while disclosing some important truth. Keep that in mind when we’re speaking, my heart; my tongue is only silver when I’m being truthful. At least, I’d like to think that’s so. I wonder...am I a smooth talker? ::grin::
It's beautiful, I think. Here: my gift to you.
"kitty". sixteen, 5' 11", white, prostitute.
ducking always the touch of must and shall,
whose slippery body is Death's littlest pal,
skilled in quick softness. Unspontaneous. cute.
the signal perfume of whose unrepute
focusses in the sweet slow animal
bottomless eyes importantly banal,
Kitty. a whore. Sixteen
you corking brute
amused from time to time by clever drolls
fearsomely who do keep their sunday flower.
The babybreasted broad "kitty" twice eight
--beer nothing, the lady'll have a whiskey-sour--
whose least amazing smile is the most great
common divisor of unequal souls.
Six. Five. Four. Three. Two. One, and my life will be decided. Forget the past, the present (for that matter); bite into the future, let the juice squish in between your fingers, lick your palms when nobody's looking. I like to look at this upcoming day as an affirmation of my worth. My father says that's unhealthy, but secretly agrees. I like to imagine what an acceptance letter will feel like, the weight of it in my hands. The touch of expensive paper, the mark of the best. Texture of my future? I'll have to wait and see - and hope.
After a terribly long time, you and I have begun speaking again. Now I cannot get enough of you. I am trying arduously to make up for lost moments, but hearing your smile is not the same as seeing it. Still, it is in your voice that I find a comfort here unparalleled. I told you that, too, but not in such eloquent language – I find words difficult around you. My Chris, always have been (since the first time you smiled at me), always will be, and I’m savoring this delicate cliche. We are the stuff books are written of.
Yesterday I didn't call him back, even after I heard the desperate message on my answering machine. I'm not quite certain why I chose not to. I used to love spending time with him; never giving any thought to my impoverished state, I shuttled him around with me everywhere, asking for very little in return. And now...I don't return his phone calls. What am I doing? Why do I involve myself like this time after time? I need to learn reclusivity, fight this urge to
people, how people workd and why they live. Please: Don't fall at my feet.
I'm worried about this. I really cannot help it, because I see now that I've gotten myself into another glorious mess (I seem to have a talent for doing so). I hope that things will not always turn out this way. Perhaps my expectations are too high; perhaps I'm searching for perfection, searching for qualities that do not exist. What is it about me that alters people so inexorably? I've decided that I'll chalk it up to pheromones. I'm obviously giving off
, for God's sake. That's got to be it, right? I just leave pheromone trails wherever I go.
Less than twenty-four hours left until the day of reckoning, and I am breathless. The moments that make people’s lives occur in single, short days. I have never noticed that before. Think about it: the day you fall in love, the day you lose a loved one, the day you are married, the day you make a huge mistake, the day you are accepted to college…the day you are denied admission. Less than twenty-four hours, and I cannot think of anything at all but this one day. I recollect: This has been the longest two weeks of my short lifetime.
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