Anytime you want to you can turn me onto
Anything you want to, anytime at all
This paper is yellow. Number two pencil, Ticonderoga--needs sharpening.
I wish you could have taught me to be a writer. Then I could say what I want and be sure at least one thing I did made sense.
I'm on the berm next to the tracks. The air is off the salt marsh. The herons fishing. The luminescent clouds tease me about heaven. Vahl's is behind me. The sun is setting over Palo Alto.
I wonder if you can see me now.
Do you remember? This is where you spared me. This is where you didn't tell me you were dying but made something up instead. I thought I'd feel closer to you here, but I feel torn up. Remembering your feet were inches from mine the last time I was at this spot makes me want to forget everything else in my life. I want to extract you from the gravel. I want to go inside Vahl's and rebuild you from the air you may have breathed and torn vinyl your body once warmed.
More than anything, I don't want to be alive with what I've done without you.
How do I become a writer? From where do I squeeze the words stuck to the rest of my life? Between pressing the gas pedal and arguing with Charlene there are these words describing a life I wasn't supposed to have but did. I still love everyone but they can't want me after you.
Wouldn't you agree, baby you and me
I need to be a good writer because I have to I tell at least one person the story. I can't un-promise you and it is far too late for childish things.
You shrugged when you read my stories. Sometimes you laughed. You never said I was good because you knew I wouldn't believe you. Because you didn't say it, I know you thought I was.
Kat, you said, "It's not really writing." It's rambling on paper. It's amateurish crap--off the subject and filled with nonsensical superlatives. Analogies to nowhere. Metaphor after metaphor of untranslatable junk. I will never be Faulkner or Steinbeck. Hemingway. These were writers and I'm not even close. I think I can sip double Springbanks neat and in the haze of artificial suave become someone who writes--you told me.
It wasn't coming from my soul.
When I'm feeling blue, all I have to do
Is take a look at you, then I'm not so blue
When you're close to me, I can feel your heartbeat
I can hear you breathing near my ear
I'm sorry. I can't read past the wrinkles in the paper. I can't get past that somewhere it's a sunny day in a park. Somewhere white clouds waft overhead like swans on a glass-smooth pond. Somewhere children flip bright plastic frisbees. Joggers sweat. Somewhere the grass is cool and green.
I can hear your breathing near my ear
You said I had to get deeper, but it already hurt me so much I wasn't sure I could figure out where deeper was.
How do I give to you that whenever you spoke to me it was like God breathing life into my mud-built body for the first time? I heard the crackle of automobile tires rolling over hot pavement. Kestrel wings hissing on the wind. The wind ruffling against my ears like clothes-lined sheets aloft on puffs of sunlight. My first breath.
You made me see infinity through clear air.
Maybe I'll never be any good because I don't know how to make myself into something else.
My professional writer friends don't seem like writers to me. They tap out article after article in well constructed prose. They explain things clearly, with minimal dreck or diversion. You wrote like them: precise. Not a word out of place, all buttoned up like a toddler in his first snowstorm.
But you felt everything just like me.
When I'm in your arms, nothing seems to matter
My whole world could shatter, I don't care
Five hundred words on the discovery of nematodes in Lake Bonney. A thousand words on frost heave in the Taylor Valley. Two thousand words on floating weightless over Houston. The fallacy of cold fusion.
I know it sounds like I'm feeling sorry for myself--a greater sin, apparently, than the deception or adultry I'll hang for. I got into this position by doing everything wrong. I turned my best friend into a lover and wrecked what had been important.
If they knew how I felt they'd never forgive me. If they knew how I feel they'd want me erased. I won't forget I loved you. You can never un-love somebody.
Now I know where deeper is. That's where I'm hurt now. I can only breathe in gasps. There isn't enough light anywhere. I can't get warm.
Wouldn't you agree, baby you and me...
But it was something, wasn't it?
"A Groovy Kind of Love" by The Mindbenders
The last episode is On the tracks, in the light
The next episode is The tragic blindness of William Hoobler