"Everyone's talking in code."
"Nobody's saying what they're saying. They're putting all these flowery phrases and all these metaphors when that's not what they're saying. Why don't they just say what they want to say?"

I'm cleaning out your medicine cup, as you placed it sticky on the cap. I taught you that cold NyQuil is better, and it's always cherry, always. I sit down and try to get through to you again.

Look, there's a lot of hurt there, in places. We hide it different places, we dole it out when we're ready. And, anyways, it's not all pain...
"I didn't say it was all pain. You did. I just think it could be said better."
Well, I use metaphor. I do the same things.
"I wasn't talking about you. This isn't about you. I'm talking about them."
But we are. We are talking about me.

Driving without a stereo in my car reminds me how much it rattles, how unsound it sounds. I know I can just talk to myself, but I don't want to, don't want to have to. I even toyed with bringing the boombox, but I had a cake to buy and wasn't sure what D batteries run for these days. I entertain the thought that if I looked hard enough through all the pawn shops, I'd find my own car stereo, maybe even with the Counting Crows CD still inside. Part of me expects to come home one day and find all 3 TVs gone (two of which can't even be pawned, I found out weeks earlier: too old), all the computer that has been given to me by this kind person or that crudely ripped from the wall. I remember looking with anger at the man passing by me moments after I discovered the car, mumbling to me with a hand-to-mouth gesture toward the last cigarette I had in the world at that moment. I expect anything somedays.

I didn't mention earlier the things that make me angry. I said what made me happy. What makes me angry is this: when someone takes and doesn't give, when they screw me over and by their actions make me colder to other people by default or by association. When someone, by their actions to me personally or someone I love, causes me to lose faith in other humans to not do the same, that makes me angry. When you make me feel and express an emotion I didn't ask for and don't want, when you cause me to take it out on others, that pisses me off.

I had these visions. The end product, always, never the steps in between that really scare us. Coming home and having someone be there, and sharing meals and chores and bills. All the nice things.

This is easy to do. Some people want that and think they can avoid what comes with it, and some people succeed, but not until after long pains and misunderstandings. Some people don't get that even if they put up with everything else. Some people never know what they wanted, or fell into, and others didn't realize they were trapping someone, suffocating them, pushing them away.

I am nine again. I am sleeping with the lights on.

I went out walking one night last week with my walkman on, just to get out of the house. Cigarettes too, and movies. I slipped into the Bookstar and realized my layers of clothes would sweat me out of the normal comfort of flipping books around. Only when I go into a bookstore do all the memories of books I've been wanting slides out of my head like an egg through a collander. And then I realize all that I haven't written, how un-well-read I am. And then I felt this peace, this ease that, yes there was so much unknown out there, so that no, my world cannot fold in on itself, it isn't empty or dry or over. I walked out without so much as a magazine and a little richer in the world.