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I hope for colors that only nature can provide, shades that don’t yet have a name, tones the sky holds just before dark and between rain showers. I get lost in cloud patterns, layers of space in the air. Each season has unique qualities, all equally inspirational and loveable. There are combinations of temperature and physical qualities of days that remind me of moments I may have already lived, or could have dreamed I had. It’s like deja vu of deja vu. I feel lucky to have moments like that, moments that cut through the day and provide unexpected feeling.
Somewhere along the way, multiple selves merged, then multiplied, allowing me to pass through numerous days acting and reacting differently to things from day to day, forgetting things I knew the day before and then recalling them weeks later with the same, arrogant way as if I’d never forgotten them in the first place. I’m not sure at what point I forked off from myself, but I remember the time in my life where I was able to keep my thoughts together to some degree, where the few things that kept me up at night didn’t need to be prioritized.
There’s something about the way people smell that is very persuasive. A woman walking past wearing the same perfume as a woman I dated places me back in another time, a life I’ve lived a hundred times. It can happen anywhere, any city where perfume is sold. By the same token, a man can ride in an elevator with me wearing the cologne my father wore when I was a child and I’m infantilized instantly. The smell of a woman’s freshly washed hair, still wet, can turn a slow afternoon into an erotic crossword puzzle, a reason to stay undressed.
What makes it so difficult to have love in your life, even when you’re sharing it with someone with whom you are perfectly compatible, someone who not only laughs at your jokes, but laughs knowing what you will say before you say it. I’ve seen the elements throughout my life, the way Greg and Michelle embody the team spirit and live to make each other happy, and I’ve seen love crumble under the weight of two peoples’ chaos circling outward in entropic decay. When I see relationships collapse, I want to save them, I want to rescue everyone from themselves.
I’m slipping, down into the wide dark river of silence. It comes in silky waves, trembling knees and inevitable sinking of my stomach. Resignation. It feels so nice to give in, feels like relief to imagine a way to escape. Until the details begin to replace the question marks of forever. I remind myself that I love life, with all of it’s relentless magnificence, even the way things turn from terrible, to worse, to all time fucking low. I maintain my look of puzzlement, and eternally perplexed way of moving forward. Until the details begin to replace the question marks.
Tonight we kissed on the roof after hours of talking and light touching at the bar. We walked to my place, smoked a joint on the roof and told stories about our families. When it grew colder, she grabbed my arm and put it around her, cradling against my side. We were able to make each other laugh between kisses and both felt very comfortable, I think. The ease of communication and ability to find ourselves funny is extraordinary, and crucial. I’ve never been with anyone like her, someone with whom I feel compatible, someone that can’t be figured out.
Listening to Missipi John Hurt, the voice that feels like a black open road at 2am, taking off to someplace unknown, imagining a place where no one notices you on the street, transparent like the heart of windows, somewhere named for the heartache arriving there will give, a town as vibrant as hollow telephone wire buried under the dirt, under the house where someone resembling you was born a hundred and fifty years ago, into the restlessness, into shivering mornings of futile radiator echo, wind rattling midnight rainstorm highway driving loneliness, out of darkness, into the voice of John Hurt.
Kim’s husband is in an asylum, 2 days after the wedding, after a year of planning, after family arrived and clothes were fitted, musicians and photographers were hired, after the reality of new family has been accepted and re-processed, introductions have been made, the jitters of forever have been weathered, every doubt that could be dug up has been confronted, compromises have been made, allowances have been made, family has been consulted, vows were spoken, promises were made, flowers were held, happiness has been wished over and over. Sad for so many reasons, mostly because Kim is an incredible person.
Met Amy and Mimi at the Pour House whiskey sours and too many cigarettes. Mostly regulars, as usual, and they played the jam on the jukebox, which was great. Mimi shot pool and was completely in her element. Later, Amy and I sat on a stoop on Grand St, necking and laughing. We both wanted me to go home with her, but taking care of caesar was a stumbling block until I remembered that Jeff is gone and Ori won’t be around till tomorrow night, so we entered the sex phase of our relationship in Jeff’s place. It is splendid.
There’s a different feeling walking in new york when you have a girlfriend. There’s a less frantic pace to life, less looking and wondering and wandering and waiting and wishing, just walking, alright, temporarily re-assured and feeling whole. It was a perfect day to be on side streets before row houses and families sitting out on their front steps, loud conversations with people behind windows upstairs, flies buzzing above their heads, and couples everywhere, songs coming from every direction and fire hydrants starting to create fun. I’m observing with a different sense, everything reminds me that I have a girlfriend.
People disappear, off the streets, out of malls and park plazas, from their homes, our hearts, memories. They can be stolen, glommed while backs are turned, abducted while a mother cleans her glasses. It’s a callous truth, a gaping whole in my heart reality, the minds of the ones who discover us missing, who realize we are gone, perhaps forever, untraceable, vapor. I try not to wonder about the mind of the abductor, that confused tangle of groping, and warped circuitry, the pain that leads them to a victim. The person is irrelevant, just their shape, their age, their body.
Somewhere in the world, someone is awake at every second of each day, breathing, waiting, wondering what to do next, trying to figure out a dream, make a plan, tell a truth. Whatever you’re thinking at this very second is being doubted at the same time, is being turned on its side and re-examined. No thought is like a snowflake, just a piece of a breeze, something that is being carried across state lines like a stowaway, like pollen, drifting across the landscape to impregnate someone else’s mind, to creep in through nostrils, through ears like pillbugs, to inspire everything.
Luck eludes most everyone I know, and I hate those people that like to wave their luck in my face, the people that flaunt their successes, the ones that stack small victories on top of each other to make them immense. There’s nothing wrong with confidence or pride when balanced, but blind arrogance offends me like few other things. Humility matters to me. I like self-deprecating humour and people that are genuinely self-effacing. It makes people more attractive me when I have to dig secrets and revelations out of them, when I discover the secret of the weekend skydiving secretary.
Up on the roof, the entire East Side of the island of Manhattan is visible, from the World Trade Center and the South Street Seaport to Midtown, Harlem and beyond. In the middle of the island, the legendary skyscrapers, the Chrysler, Empire State and Citicorp buildings, stand like heart and lungs providing life to the veiny streets surrounding. All the activity is invisible, save for the starry twinkle of cars, from here. It just sits there to be admired, free for the mind to fill in the blanks of the story, to imagine someone staring back, wondering about me, too.
Woke up extra early today to watch the implosion of the two Brooklyn Union Gas Company tanks, major neighborhood landmarks. Always visible above the buildings and treetops, everyone would point at them. “You see those tanks? That’s right where I live.” Jon and I got up at 6:45 this Sunday morning to sit with our neighbors and friends, have a beer and watch the tanks go boom. The sound was sudden, and the tower to the right listed slightly towards the other, which feel straight down. One the news we saw aerial pictures and the tanks were intact, just flattened.
Lying on my bed talking on the phone with Amy, lights off, laughing between puffs of my cigarette, which I never smoke in bed, enjoying the lights off conversation, eyes closed, feeling like the walls between me and the borough of queens where she walks through her apartment, getting ready for bed, are negligible, like space is only relevant when my eyes are open, that I can travel across the city without moving, can be inside her apartment as we talk, not moving or watching, just speaking, listening to her voice as I get closer to sleep, growing heavier, resting.
I realized that I very nearly re-created a mistake I made 6 years ago, running the risk of losing someone in my life that is very important to me, causing a hurt I could not easily forgive myself for inflicting, and certainly couldn’t blame them for holding against me for a long, long time. There are very specific things about myself I would like to change, not because they are so horrible, but because I believe my life would be calmer, more manageable if they were gone. My attraction to chaotic, emotionally rocky people is good and bad. Mainly bad.
What do you do when people start disappearing, when their voice is replaced by a feeling or a memory, when their memories are harder to remember than forget? Nothing can replace a person. Nothing soothes the pain of loss, not even time. Every day pushes on the fine strings that hold us all together, the pressures pushing down in the lines between peoples’ eyes. I feel the pressure and I know what it means. Another vacuum, another breath dissolving into the ozone, another entropic particle to preserve in my brain until the edges curl like parchment, until only memory matters.
Sad stories have been drawn to me recently; the kinds of stories that make me wonder how people have the capacity to hurt, how people put their heads forward and plow on because they can’t imagine doing anything else. I know that there is a major positive in knowing that survival is possible, but I don’t know if I have it. I’m good in other peoples’ crises, but I have a tendancy to fold in my own. So many friends have endured through miserable shit they didn’t deserve. I love them for surviving, and I love the ones that couldn’t.
Spent the first day in the hamptons cruising around with my dad. He’s been exceptionally mellow with me since last night after the first 10 minutes in the car. We had a little tiff in the car about caesar right when I got in, but it blew over. We stopped for hotdogs and a sandwich, tried to get dinner in town, but just went to sleep because the kitchen was closed. Tomorrow, Amy will be here and I can’t wait. I’m not the least bit nervous, just excited to see her, to be around her. I am expecting big fun.
Lying in bed with Amy in East Hampton. Finished with Caesar’s medication. All day, I was chased by a 5-year-old, Rachel, who was convinced she was Arielle from the little mermaid, and that I was Flounder, the fish that couldn’t speak. In the pool, she pulled my earlobes, but in the hot tub, she jumped in my arms and said, ‘I love you, Flounder”. She didn’t want to leave without me later, which was sweet, but made me sad because I didn’t know what to do, or say. I’ve never been good with kids, but it seems to be changing.
The ups come at the same time as the downs now. There was a time when there were periods of good followed by bad and back and forth. Things move faster all the time and I feel like I’m just weaving inside the lines, trying to get from here to there. I’m in the middle of beginning of a new relationship with the best person I have ever been lucky enough to date, but at the same time, I’m balancing caring for caesar which gets harder and sadder all the time. Tumbling wave-water and sand, tumultous rolling followed by calm.
The weekend in the hamptons with Amy was great. Everything went better than could have been expected. We got to spend plenty of time alone together, and still managed to be willing to mingle with the party guests and smoke pot on the roof-deck with Jon and Mark, talking about civil war ancestors and black sheep of families. The relaxing days went by, mercifully, in long stringy time. Amy wanted to get in the hot tub. Way too hot. We made it for about 2 minutes before we ran up the hill and jumped back into the pool to float.
Sometimes music makes me dizzy, makes me feel like the world only exists as long as the music is there, that when the music stops the entire world changes hue and shape, becomes too small again. The right song at the right time allows me to feel what I need to feel. At it’s best, a song can make me feel as energetic as if I just had a shot of deep black coffee, it can help me break free for 3 minutes, make me fall in love and break my heart, can let me live life all over again.
Finally finished my root canal today, feeling a little sluggish after an amazing night with Amy down at a bar near St. Marks place and then downstairs in Jeff’s apartment. Sweaty and laughing, we lay in the dark, listening to each other, realizing how nice it is to be with someone who makes you realize how happy you can be, someone who looks at you and sees all your faults balanced by all the hidden qualities that make you attractive. It was scary but perfect, and I didn’t want it to end for a single second. I’m remembering it all.
Jon and I finally got back into the studio tonight to attempt to re-record the vocals that had been totally fucked up from the last session. Everything was mixed too hot to the cd, so the vocals, which were the loudest thing, were distorted most noticeably. For some reason, though, this time, everything sounded much better. So, after eating an entire chicken blt from the polish restaurant in record time, we set to work creating more perfect mixes. The goal was to have something for Mark to understand when he does the final mix of the record, when we finish.
I remember her room, the space between the walls and the furniture. Dark, waiting for some breeze to come from outside and momentarily change our temperatures back to a bearable degree. Everything seems entropic in the most positive way and we exchange more stories that range from hysterical to morbid without changing the base mood of the night, of relief and excitement, anticipation, expectation that what seems mysterious now, will seem amazing soon. Being here, now, I know that she is moving around the city and I feel like I should be there, like part of my body is missing.
Caesar is sick again, stumbling around a bit and having trouble breathing. When I hold him he makes a sound like lips smacking together, trying to clear his throat. His tail flaps about awkwardly, like he doesn’t have the strength to make it go where it should anymore. He doesn’t throw up and still has an appetite, but doesn’t purr very much and I can tell that he’s starting to feel more exhausted than just tired. I want more than ever to withdraw his suffering from his body, to place a touch on him that restores his vitality, his happiness.
Spending the night at Amy’s apartment for the first time is something I’ve been waiting for and imagining for days. We went to dinner and a movie, spent some of the night walking around and lying on the roof, looking at clouds pass by slowly. My goal was that we would spend the night talking and holding onto each other, with that please don’t disappear grip. Then in the morning we’d wake up with breakfast in bed followed by more laying around, talking and laughing. Later we’d make lunch together, returning to the bedroom. holding with please don’t disappear grip.
The doctor said that Caesar’s ‘numbers’ are all better except for his BUN, which indicates how much waste is being flushed from his system. The BUN said that he isn’t processing as much as he should and there is waste in his bloodstream. Plus, he’s got a chronic respiratory/nasal infection. I’ve added antibiotics, potassium jelly, and nose drops to his daily routine of pepcid, tapazole, flagyl, phoslo, and fluid. Every other day he gets an injection, too. He’s always flinchy when I touch him, because he thinks it’ll be medicine or needles. He ate well tonight, which is a relief.
This afternoon pre-sunset, when the light has turned toward tired evening brown and the shadows against the window reveal another world of possibility, is not as beautiful as the time spent with Amy. Holding hands although we’re lying beside one another, continuing conversations in our sleep with residual intensity. If it were a song, I would never forget the melody, and would wonder forever what voice was its home. Even when my heart splits in half, when I hear caesar’s forever weakening meow, and I wonder what is inevitable, why suffering lasts, it’s all made less tragic by knowing her.
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