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Love As An Exponential Number

I’ll kiss you once in the morning when I wake up to remind you of the night before. The sheets of my bed pool at our feet, tracking up thin until our knees, our cumulative friction having cast them away, slipping away like the fog of last night’s rest.

I’ll kiss you twice in the morning when you finally shake yourself from bed, to anchor you to the ground in the fog of coming awake.

I’ll kiss you four times in the afternoon before I turn my attention away to my writing, immersing myself in the fog of running words and sentences out my fingers.

I’ll kiss you eight times in the afternoon when I call you to join me in the shower, standing behind you in the fog of coming clean, my hands at the cusp of your stomach and trapped around your neck, and the hot rain of shower water fills us and follows us long throughout the day.

I’ll kiss you sixteen times in the evening when, while watching you as I read a book I’ve read a thousand times — just as I’ve kissed you, those passages still enthrall me with a greatness of heart — I realize how smitten I am with you, and the smile that comes from me is a smile that pierces the fog of being in love.

I’ll kiss you thirty-two times in the evening when we slip to dinner and slip to dessert and drive away in circles around the city we inhabit together. You are not keeping count. You are lost in the fog of urban loneliness and even with every kiss to your lips, your forehead and your neck, your thoughts track you like a sudden dread that leaves you anxious for no apparent reason, like guilt, like fervor, like pleasure.

I’ll kiss you sixty-four times in the night when we adjourn to bed, you loosening your skirt and me loosening my tie, our lips loose with gossip from the other night, a contagious yawn moving from your mouth to mine in the fog of tiredness and a day well-spent. You’ll part your legs and press your toes against my thighs and tempt me with a grin that twinkles your eyes and blushes your face. I’ll lower myself to count my sixty-four kisses to your body (“sixty, sixty-one,” I murmur to myself deep in thought amid your breasts) and while you tap your big toe on my treetrunk thighs I’ll tell you (“sixty-three, sixty-four”) that I want to hold you first, for the moment, for now.

I’ll kiss you a hundred and twenty eight times in the night when I take you in bed, in the fog of passion. The routes I take along your body are not the fastest to the destination, nor the most direct. I take detours and triple right turns. You’ll moan my name at the twelfth kiss, and press your knees to my chest at the thirtieth. Even when you face away from me, turning with your elbows to the mattress so I can have you from behind, my fifty-fourth kiss catches you in your hair where my hands are bunched in raw fistfuls. The fog of passion fills my space and my sight at the eighty-ninth kiss, where you turn your hair despite the difficult angle and reach for my mouth. At the ninty-first kiss I feel you shudder with an intensity that requires a minor Richter scale. At the hundredth kiss I match your shudder with one of my own, and I pull you to me so you feel the warmth of my breath on your neck, the warmth of my come inside you, the warmth of my feet indenting yours into the bed. At the one hundred twenty-seventh kiss I ask wipe the sweat off your forehead and turn to reach for the sheets still pooled at the edges and spilling onto the floor. At the final kiss of the night, after two hundred and thirty nine kisses, I crown your left cheek with a light kiss and we drift to sleep.

   
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Orgasmic Delights

Paper!

Parchments hand cut. Pads and reems of exquisite, delicate paper.

Thin as tissue or sturdy and thick. Roughly torn or cut with precision.

Paper in all colors and sizes. Creamy ivory linen or handmade with flower pulp.

The smell. The feel. The cuts to the fingers.

The way it looks as it is waiting to be written on. Anything can happen in the moments before it becomes decoratively defiled by the pen and ink.

Pens!

Every color. Every weight. Some inexpensive but oh, the exquisitely heavy ones. Jet black ink. Fountain or ball point. Brush tip and calligraphy. The smell. The taste as you touch it's tip to your tongue. The permanence.

And with the union of pen and paper a uniquely desirable creation is brought forth.

the Letter!

Oh! Love Letters to be exact. Written by a fountain pen from which flows ebony ink. Curving into the hand just so, it strokes with the greatest of care the alluring pages of ivory linen.

Tenderly folded and sealed with a scarlet wax. Tied loosely with a ribbon of crimson... a letter set to wait for it's delivery.

But love letters require a recipient and alas, I have to lover to woo into orgasmic delights.

Therefore I delight myself in the pleasures of pen and paper.

 

 

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“Somewhere down the line we forgot what it was like to be a star.”

What I remember best about spring is Dalton Fenwick’s poem, which Dalton Fenwick read aloud. He’d titled it “Somewhere down the line we forgot what it was like to be a star,” and it predicted the future of every boy in Mr. Morten’s eleventh grade English class. People looked at him funny when he recited more than five lines, and then at me when he read “Otto Summerland—eating up time / typewriter king, fucked-up little thing / made out of gold and nobody knows.” Some girls giggled when the poem foretold Mike Gore fucking five of them—no one knew which five—and Tommy Gallais got excited because he’d get to see California at last.

 

Those were just the eye-widening stanzas. Teases. What really made us gasp was the end, where Dalton wrote about Ben Willoughby and Andrew Nickelby dying. Willoughby would get hit by a car, and Nickelby would drown in a pool. Everyone sort of laughed and shifted uncomfortably and then clapped, and while I don’t think anyone took Dalton seriously, his words were weird enough to land him a meeting with the school psychologist.

 

After class, I told Dalton that I thought his poem was brilliant. No one anticipated a poem like that from a basketball player, especially a good one; at most, we’d expected a haiku. He smiled and said he’d inherited God’s teeth. He ran a hand through his strawberry hair. “Did you like the part about you?” he asked. I told him I did. He smiled wider. “Do you want to know how I came up with it?” I told him I did. He punched me in the shoulder.

 

 

For a time after, all people talked about was how messed up Dalton’s poem was. I guess we all thought he was stupid, like some animal or some statue. A thing that played with a ball to amuse us.

 

Well, something happened to prove us wrong—Dalton was on to something with that poem of his. One night, a car without headlights turned a corner and smashed into Ben Willoughby head-on, killing him.

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time capsule - i

listen,

sometimes, your worst days won’t be the ones when you feel sad, depressed, lonely, frustrated or even stressed with all work you need to get done.

your worst days will be the ones you feel numb, emotionless, not alive, still and it will suck. please occupy your mind with things that matter to you, let it pass smoothly or not, just let it pass.

don’t let it get to you, i hope you never feel this way.

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I know that this is just a temporary place. a waystation on the path that this life has taken me. I am just so tired of the sights of the the same thoughts, the same cold dreams, the same rutted time walking back and forth from one room to the other. 

I want my own windows, my own door, a place that if I wanted to let the fucking dishes sit in the damned sink for a day I could. That place that dosent keep reminding me with passive agressive notes and little hints dropped in conversations that I am not keeping up, that I am not good enough for what ever it is that I am not good enough for. either your god,or your house, or your church or life. 

I don't want to be good enough for you, I want to be good enough for me.

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People Who Can Fly

It looks ridiculous. Nobody really knows what they’re doing, so they all do these ridiculous little things they think are important. I know one guy who flaps his arms like wings, like an eagle. It’s brilliant. This little guy with arms like saplings, standing high on a hill and swinging them back and forth at the shoulders in these huge, powerful strokes – as if his arms actually caught the air. As if it actually took some effort. Except that’s not really a fair thing to say, because it does take effort. It’s really hard. Not the flapping, that’s easy. But the process of… I don’t know. Getting in the mood. Getting in the right frame of mind to lift yourself off the ground and into the clouds. That’s why this guy flaps like a bird, because it means something to him. It doesn’t do anything to the air or whatever, but it helps him up just the same. Me? I take a run-up. I go about twenty metres back and run, and when I’m nearly there I start jumping really high and bringing my knees up to my chest. It’s fucking stupid. I just jump like that until I don’t touch the ground anymore. It looks so bad. But it helps me, you know? It gets me in the air.

Not that I’m particularly graceful once I’ve taken off. People don’t cut easily through the wind. Too many big, wide surfaces and weird protuberances, so when I’m actually in the air I’m constantly in this awful balancing act. I’m not very good at it. I still tend to flail a lot, and I’ve only just learned not to panic when my balance goes to shit. Because you can’t panic. Once I nearly lost a leg because I panicked. You’d be surprised how easily legs can just snap off, and you don’t even need to fall that far. The doctors thought I was a failed suicide and made me go to a therapist until I was better. He was a nice guy, but he didn’t know what to do with me. He knew I was holding something back. I sure as fuck wasn’t going to tell him what really happened, so eventually he had to let me go. I feel sort of bad about that. I wish we’d stayed in touch. I liked him.

I can’t teach you how to do it. Like I said, everyone has their own way. You’ll want to practice somewhere nobody can see you, because chances are you’ll look just as dumb as me, running and banging my knees into my chest. Maybe you won’t, maybe you’ll just jump into the sky fists-first like a superhero. But I’ve never met a superhero.

Just make sure you practice a lot, where nobody can see you, so that when you do come out and show someone – if you show someone – then at least you’ll look like you know what you’re doing. We’ll still laugh at you. We’ll laugh because you’ll look like a dick, but you’ve got to remember that everyone looks ridiculous, and that’s not what matters. Nobody really laughs at someone who can fly. Not really.

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No Answer

Your mother didn't answer her phone. She had left hours ago, off to collect the meager "bonus" she was offered at work. It was a few extra dollars from the manager, your grandfather. It was Christmas Eve, the sun had gone down hours ago. You were supposed to be in bed. 

You call again. 

Your younger brothers are all asleep. 

No answer.

Maybe your brother knows where she is. He is older. He is responsible. He has his own flat.

You call him.

He picks up the phone and slurs a "hello," at you. You hear a crash and some swearing. He can't stop laughing. The voices in the background laugh too. 

You hang up.

Call Mom again.

No answer.

You look next to you on the couch. An aging quilt that always rests on Mom's lap stares back at you. It has been folded.

It is never folded.

You swallow your fear and try again.

You keep calling. 

Never an answer.

You sigh, giving up. You make your way slowly to your crowded shared bedroom and lay down, stroking your dog for comfort until you drift off.

 

You don't wake until the afternoon. It's Christmas, but the only things waiting for you in the living room is a small trinket offered to you by your hung-over brother. You watch as he drinks countless cups of coffee and your younger siblings play with their gifts.

You ask about Mom.

No answer.

He offers to bring you and your brothers back to his apartment for the weekend and you agree. It is the best gift ever. He is grown up. He is cool. He has his own apartment in the city.

You spend a few days there, in the city. You fall asleep to gunshots and a cacophony of inebriated slurs from the parties held in the next room. 

Every day you ask about Mom.

No answer.

 

Finally, it is Monday. Mom knocks on the door in the morning. Your brother is dragging himself out of the shower to get ready for work. 

You ask where she has been.

No answer. 

You say good-bye to your brother.

No answer.

 

The drive home is quiet. The rest of the day is quiet. Everything in your chaotic home is quiet. She does not wish you a merry Christmas. She does not bring you a gift. You do not ask for one. 

When she goes to bed, you stare at the crumpled old quilt next to you on the couch.

You beg it to never be folded again.

 

No answer.

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She wouldn't say no to an adventure.

Sirens raced into a near distance, like all other days in between crazy streets.

“Hey Mister.” An unfamiliar voice crept up from behind my back and as I turned around standing there was the most peculiar kid I had ever seen.

She was at least four and half feet tall, her hair is almost comparable to an autumn day in New York, a subtle mix of a sunset sky most people have the luxury to see. She wore faded jeans and a pink shirt; ones you see most children her age wear. You can’t miss it. Though what really caught my attention was this purse she was carried in her hand.It is the not of things, one that clearly didn’t belong in the picture.

“Yes little girl? How may I help you?” I crouched a bit and brought myself down to her eye level. I thought to myself how and why on earth is she alone is such a busy place, where and who could her parents be?

She smiled at me for a bit then suddenly, her expression changed from a slipping sunshine into brief hints of rain.

“Mister, do you know where I can buy this little white stick where magic smoke comes out? My mother does magic all the time though she needed to buy some more because she’s almost out.”

She caught me off guard there for a while as I couldn’t even begin how to answer her question. I had to think for a moment, but I was interrupted shortly after she started to tug the sleeve of my shirt.

“Hey mister, mister! Is anybody home in there? Where can I buy magic sticks for my mother??”

She kept on tugging and I swear a if I didn’t stop her sooner my sleeve will be torn off.

“Magic sticks?” I stood up and fixed my sleeves. Scratched my head as she gazed upon my curious face with such innocent intent.

“Yes, magic sticks. I need to hurry or else mother will go to heaven!”

What she just said enraged me.  I can’t even begin to process how wrong all of this is.

“Where is your mother?, I have some magic sticks here that I don’t need. I will gladly share some.” 

“She’s waiting for me by that place where everyone’s treasure is kept. She works there you see and she just let me go out through her secret door all by myself. She says it would be a nice adventure for a change and I am not the type of kid who backs down from adventures. I am no trapped princess! No sir!” She giggled and my heart cracked into two.

She mentioned her mother working at a bank. And the nearest one was at least five blocks away. Goodness. I am surprised how she got this far by herself. 

“Okay then. Let’s go save your mother.”
“AAALRIGHT! Let’s go mister! My mother doesn’t like to wait long!”

We went back to her mother’s workplace only to find dozens of ambulances and police cars all crowded near the entrance.
I felt this blunt pain inside my chest as I finally realized the truth behind the scheme of things.

She was silent and my heart broke into pieces.

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Words aren’t pretty, but that’s okay too. I think they’re clunky, ugly. Bent and folded like crumpled pieces of paper. Littering the earth and everyone in it and leaving them with pockmarks and indentations too deep for fingers and too shallow for mouths to drink from. I find lies in things like glass bottles and cranes and whale bones, and say things like I Don’t Care, when I do. When caring is all that’s left and Not Caring isn’t so much a choice as it is the state of doing Nothing. I find beauty in Nothing too. There are no words for it, but it fills the cracks of all things, flows and drips into this reality and whatever reality there is, or could ever be. I cup my hands to catch it and its cold like metal and smooth and polished and pale. Because that’s something they’ll never tell you, no matter how hard you beg. Nothing feels like Something. I know don’t make sense and I guess I’ve stopped trying to. I’m worried about finding footing, and saying exactly the right thing at exactly the right time, and I’ve given up on that too. I want endless rain and cold, and I want it feel like everything there ever was. Like when you’re moving through a parking lot in the rain and look up at the lights to see tiny drops of water flying into your face like little lines of white. I want words like that. But all I can say is clunky and unfettered and slow, and nothing that’s polished even knows my name.

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The Depressed Waitress

Her eyes move quickly across the room, though, she hardly looks up, from the coffee cups, the billfolds, the floorboards she treads from the counter to my table. Her arms are thin, her elbows and fingers raw with eczema. She wears a pinafore with sneakers. She is beautiful in sneakers. If she speaks one foot will hide behind the other, like an infant behind a mother. Her nails are black and her hair is ash and carbon. She bites her bottom lip when she is thinking. She smells the bag of coffee beans when she thinks no one is looking. Her stockings are always black. Her makeup is always thin and wispy. And her freckles, thankfully, she never manages to hide them. Her hands are worried. Her shoulders are heavy. Her voice is hushed and running through long grass. What are you reading today? she always asks. I smile and show her the cover. One foot hides behind the other. Who reads Hermann Hesse? she asks. Someone wanting to impress, let's say, girls with Latin tattooed on their wrist. A laugh escapes her petite anatomy, sudden like a firecracker.