"That which is overdesigned, too highly specific, anticipates outcome; the anticipation of outcome guarantees, if not failure, the absence of grace."
-- William Gibson, All Tomorrow's Parties
Never been so alone; never been so alive.

I stole a copy of American Gods I left for my mom to read last year (and of course she hasn't, even though I know it's something she would really enjoy), and took a two hour bath.

And for the duration, I didn't think. I managed to escape, a little.

But it didn't help.

Run, desire, run
Sexual being, run him like a blade
To and through the heart, no conscience, one
Motive, to cater to the hollow

What are you supposed to take away from something that was welded together with lies, with exactly what you needed to hear, regardless of the truth?

And later, after the angry noises of the betrayed, the tears and apologetic noises, the continuing insistance that all the parts you needed to hear, they really were true. That what came out of both sides of her mouth, it was all of it true. Except some of it omitted, twisted to keep you, hold you, make you believe in her.

What are you supposed to take away from things whispered and promised, cried out?

Screamin' feed me here
Fill me up again
Pacify this hungerin'

Sitting on the couch with Eddie, and saying how there's nothing here, no meaning, nothing to take away but what she's made us feel.

Nothing but chemical responses, an incomprehensible need to believe in her again.

Nothing but momentum.

So grow, libido, throw
Dominoes of indiscretions down
Fallin' all around, in cycles, in
Circles, constantly consuming
Conquer and devour

I keep staring off into the distance and losing the thread of what people around me are saying. I'm not even thinking anything. I just feel shell-shocked, looking a thousand miles into the blurring distance of a desert night.

The moon so bright it's like a spotlight, drowning out the stars. Perched up on the mesas around this valley, I feel disconnected. Raw and bloody and my chest won't stop hurting.

I keep feeling my phone vibrate in my pocket, and I reach for it, knowing that it's all in my head.

'Cause it's time to bring the fire down
Bridle all this indiscretion
Long enough to edify
And permanently fill this hollow

That it was all of it in my head.

Screamin' feed me here
Fill me up again
Feed me here
Fill me up again

Sitting here, haunted by the understanding that yet again I was the fallback crutch, the pawn. That I stepped down and didn't fight, even though at the end, I wanted to. Just to feel her hand in mine again, and believe I'm the only one. To have her tell me how much she needs me, and have it just be a given.

Just to have her feel my eyes on her again. The way it felt like gravity between us, the tugging weight of tides and slow ions. But somehow saying instead, "We can't do this."

"I know. Just stop," she says, "stop looking at me like you do."

"Like what?"

"Like you can see right into my soul."

And you want to laugh at the sheer cliche of it, but her voice, the way it trembles, the way the neon glitters off unshed tears in her eyes, you can't do anything but reach over to the table and it's something like midnight outside in the flatlands, but in the purple-tinted darkness of the room, you put your mirrorshades on.

My voice like dead leaves in deep autumn, crackling under boots, and I say, "I don't know any other way to look at you."

Memory rattling around in my head like shattered glass in a metal box.

The way her back arched under my hands. Nuzzling my neck or chest, whispering: "You smell so good."

How, around her, I felt safe. How awake.

And now I'm here, alone, lost, and feeling so, so stupid.

Still wanting her.

November 26, 2004 5:32 AM