Tuesday, May 26, 2009

First And Delilah

This is reality, as desperate as it gets: Rows of houses on a cold summer night. Fogged glass as the city lights blur. Getting lost down the sidestreets of foreign neighbourhoods. Two pairs of eyes, wide-eyed and gleaming, peering through curtains of darkness.

Sitting outside of my apartment, making fun of the neighbours: "See that crinkly? That's Kevin - rusty as fuck, and I don't mean in a good way. The kinda guy you never wanna grow up to be. And that, that's Old Lady Axl, a.k.a. 'The Bitch Next Door.' A real chopsy, the fuckin' dingbat. She has about a millions cats, and her flat smells like a bloody vivisection lab. And on and on . . . "

This is about the hours we spent just talking, too excited and too enamored with the circumstances to take each other's clothes off. This is about trying to find you a pair of pajamas and a toothbruth at 2:30 in the morning. Sitting in the car on a cold summer night, because watching the world go by is so much better than sleeping.

"The city looks so different at night, in the shadow of invisible monsters, the slim and dark phantoms crawling out of our skin."

This is clarity, as passionate as it gets: Listening to bad radio, singing bad songs, writing bad poetry, our laughter fogging the windows even more.

I waited all night, you waited all night, but you left before sunrise, and I just wanted to tell you . . . the sunrise was beautiful. You and me, love, we grew up the same: in the shadows of parking lots, bookstores, and late-night coffee chains. Dancing to bad music, driving bad cars, watching bad T.V.

And for the briefest of moments, it didn't matter where we were from, or why everything was falling apart. It still doesn't, we are all better than the circumstance.

Friday, May 8, 2009

The Little Deaths

Nana's kitchen.
Jackie, Adam, Julia and Stephen.

The cookies on the stove were on fire.
Toxic smoke filling the kitchen.

The Mighty Mighty Bosstones were seeping from my father's old headphones. I was singing along to an old Rise Against song.

(I'm pretty sure the house was on fire at this point.)

I turned my head and Jackie leaned in and kissed me.
I wasn't expecting it and it felt awkward standing there.

"Um, what was that for?"
"No reason."

There was so much I didn't know about you then and I couldn't think of anything else to say. You ended the conversation with a playful shove, a lingering and inviting stare.

I should have considered the implications but the smoke had grown so thick. There was just so much turmoil - we were young, violent and numb, all at once.

And none of it ever amounted up to anything at all.

We were all late for the concert so we quickly collected our things. Nana and Stephen were already standing in the hallway by the door.

Me and Jackie watched silently as they sifted through the ashes, searching for their keys and petticoats. With skin burned thin, eyes charred black, skeletons lay exposed.