Saturday, February 7, 2009

Spinning Apart

Every now and then the things that I believe in suddenly seem to lose their meaning. I spin apart, so fast that bits and pieces of me are torn away until suddenly I realize that in my effort to get as far away from myself as I can, I have lost too much. And maybe I wish to forget the pieces that I lost, maybe I did not hold on to them as I should and that is the reason that circumstances were able to tear them from me. If I could stop, if I could find stillness for just one moment sometimes I think I might recover...something.  But the terrain of my life has changed and even if I could recover them, the pieces no longer fit. So I continue to run crossing lines I never thought to cross, and with each new crossing I search out every reason to be gone, convincing myself there's nothing here to hold onto.

Friday, January 30, 2009


The cold is a premonition, a warning that I am about to drift into a familiar nightmare. I can taste it, smell it. Panic washes over me in freezing waves slowing my limbs even as my mind races, seeking some escape all the while knowing there is none. I have dreamed this dream before. With every breath I take the cold seeps in like poison turning my flesh to ice so brittle, so fragile, I know that I must shatter at the slightest touch. What terrifies me most is the intense beauty of everything in the dream: so brutally brilliant, so perfect that to look on it is painful. Somehow I know that I also have been transformed-all my flaws vanished-replaced with an unearthly perfection. The cold is unbearable, the beating of my heart painful, the fear that I will break apart intolerable. Tears, crystalline and shining freeze on my pale cheeks a testament to the sorrow flooding my veins, turning my blood to ice water. The tears are usually what breaks the spell and I find myself in my bed shivering, trembling, heart pounding. Although I am aware each time that this is merely a nightmare I am also deeply convinced that one day I will fail to awaken from it. 

Friday, September 19, 2008

Everywhere and Nowhere

I've been dancing with strangers. They hold me close, whisper to me, smile, and I feel nothing but the respite from my thoughts that movement brings, hear nothing but the music and my breath. They look in my eyes and I find myself wondering what they see because when I look back at them all I see is you. Or your absence, but does it really matter which it is? Absent or not ours is the story I can't seem to put down--stubbornly rereading the last pages over and over again, willing there to be a different ending. So I've been dancing with strangers. Their hands are tender and coaxing their voices soft and compelling. They tell me I'm the sweetest thing they've ever seen and I think I hear the echo of your voice in theirs, I think: lies like these are far too easy to tell. I want to scream that I can't hear them, cannot see or feel them, that my reality right now is silent and empty, that their warmth cannot reach me here. I want to tell them that there is no belief left in me--only the certain knowledge that their eventual betrayal, their inevitable lies will mean less to me because I will never again allow myself to care the way I did with you. But I say none of this, only smile as they lead me out the door, thinking surely in such a large city they will take me somewhere new, somewhere where I have not been with you, somewhere where I can allow myself to be distracted, allow myself to forget for a little that with you everywhere I am nowhere.

Saturday, March 8, 2008

“They sicken of the calm, who know the storm”

There was a storm last night. A cataclysm in the skys. The wind, howling like some sentient wild thing, clawed and ravaged the buildings, raced down the avenues, biting through everything in its path. Nightmarish clouds ragged and terrible were driven across the pregnant heavens weeping torrents of petulant tears, soaking the deserted city yet failing to wash away it's sins. 

With a mouthful of rain, clouds in my eyes and the desolation of the wind-swept heavens in my heart I stand high above the city fighting the storm or surrendering to it --not quite sure which--the city lights whirling and spinning round me, the vastness of the night closing in on me. I feel air rushing past me and I'm falling, flying, spun off my axis washed by rain and scoured by wind hoping, wishing, wanting to feel clean and whole again but suspecting that like the city I have come too far to ever regain my innocence completely.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

An Apparition

Stumbling up the six flights of stairs to my tiny apartment, past midnight, past feeling, stumbling not because of that last glass of champagne, but because--as usual--I'm running on mostly nerves, far too little sleep, too little food and a fear of staying still. Through the door and I fumble for the light switch, my gloved fingers searching, sliding, connecting. The sudden light dazzles my nighttime eyes and through the brightness I see an apparition confronting me at the end of the hallway. High heels, impossibly long legs, a short smoke colored dress clinging to a slender frame, she moves nearer studying me, ignoring the cavalier slide of the dress as it reveals one pale gleaming white shoulder. A shining nimbus of dark hair frames a small, pale face too angular for beauty with sly grey shadow-smudged eyes, prominent cheekbones, and sulky red lips. I watch her and wonder why she so often seems such a stranger, there on the other side of the glass. She looks too tired for twenty-five, worldly and cynical like a picture in a magazine or one of those shadows that this city produces: an illusion that men dream of and small-town girls wish to be. The difficulty with such pictures, such shadows, is that they are just that--mere illusions, insubstantial as dreams. As soon as I step away from the mirror she ceases to exist. Take away the glamour which the night and the city have cast over her, remove her from the pages of the magazine and place her in a six floor walk-up in Spanish Harlem and she's just an ordinary, exhausted, confused yet determined young woman after a long night with the prospect of an even longer day ahead of her.

Thursday, February 7, 2008


Like blood, like breath, the music pulses though me. This is a place where sight cannot guide me, where trust in the person in my arms is everything. Relinquish control, breath, feel the music as it moves through him  and into me. Trust that the next step is inevitable as breath, as the next note. The patterns imprint themselves on my mind, and although my eyes are closed I see the beauty of our movements. I feel it in the curve of my spine, the length of my legs, the balls of my feet, my body belongs not to me but to the song. And the song speaks of first love, of loneliness and laughter and of tears. It speaks of the night, inky and passionate, of city streets, empty cafe tables, the sweetness of wine and the bitterness of time. It flirts, demands, coaxes, then slips away shadowy as memory. Stillness. I open my eyes. Emerge from the dance like a dreamer awakening. Return to the present, once again stand on my own, breath on my own, til the next song, the next dance.

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

I Miss You More Than I Should

I walked away from you. Said goodbye. It sounds trite to say it was one of the hardest decisions I've ever made but it was. In that moment it was. And each moment after that has been nearly as hard, hard to remember why it was the right choice to make, hard to not wish I could take it all back. The ringing phone, hazel eyes, laughter, Brooklyn, late nights, high heels and stockings, the smell of your cologne a touch on the small of my back. All you. Something always brings me back to you.
Everything in slow motion, I watch myself move through the city, going through the motions. I feel fragile, brittle, as if I might break at any time so I hold my back unnaturally straight, head high, hands empty, and I keep moving because I don't know what else to do. Besides sleep. And in dreams I seek you out where there are no tears, the sick feeing vanished, as if it never existed. If only I could stay asleep. But dreams are fragile things and reality has a way of forcing itself  through, and then I'm falling, wrenched back to earth where consciousness is painful. I curl in on myself, clinging to that too seductive oblivion. You can only hold reality at bay for so long though before you must continue- it's another day, another day of trying not to think, trying not feel, trying not to feel disgust for the fact that I'm still under you spell. I don't know what you feel, can't know, shouldn't care, and still my thoughts chase themselves round and round wanting, needing to know. To know if you're hurt, if you miss me, if you regret that we'll never love or laugh together again. Won't ever again smell me on your clothes and skin, or explore my shape, memorize my face in the darkness. Do you reach for me and find me gone? Or have you found someone else to reach for? Someone else to tease and laugh with, to tell your stories to, someone else to ease the knots out of tired muscles?
"And I know it's easy to say,
But it's harder to feel this way,
I miss you more than I should,
Than I thought I could,
Can't get my mind off of you.

And I hate the phone, 
But I wish you'd call,
Thought being alone
Was better than, 
Was better than...."