Monday, September 10, 2012
You will find me, here, naked and blank, pale, drowned beneath these sheets of blood. Close my eyes, they are empty, I will sleep. Do not kiss my lips. They are cold, cracked. Cover my face. I am nothing and isn't nothing better?
You will find me, swinging from this tree, a lonely child. I am nobody and the sky is not mine. I could never feel the sand under my feet. I am sorry. This dead face will be with you now, always, and that is more than I have ever had.
You will find me, your son, upstairs; the bang has interrupted your dinner party. I'm a mess, but do not be embarrassed. It hurt, mother, just briefly; do you know about pain? I have known it only.
You will find me, early, down here in the garage, in the car. I am wearing my best but I have vomited. It is not how I imagined or maybe it is because that is everything. You have seen me struggle; the air does not fill my lungs easily. I couldn't hold your hand a single time more without crushing it, wholly. But I have not choked down this foul air for you. This is me submerging into the ocean. It is the only way I know how to breath.
I will kiss your dead face until you are alive again. I will scream into your ears and there will be blood. I will tell you that nothing is not better. I will love you like I do and I will look down into the bottom of your eyes and see more than you have ever seen.
I will find out your name and I will cry for you. This is my tree now.
Son, I will drop to my knees and I will pray. I have made mistakes in my life, so many, and this is certainly my punishment. But you have a brother and a sister and, my dear, the carpets are completely ruined. You must know there are practicalities in living.
What have you done? Reach for me, the bones in my hands are strong. Open your mouth, I will breathe into your lungs with my own air. Let us be at least together.
Sunday, September 02, 2012
My neighbours make love maybe one out of every two or three weekends; Saturday night, sometimes Sunday morning. I listen and I draw them in that moment behind my bedroom wall with my pencil. She is on top and her hair sprawls wildly across the page. Her teeth draw blood from her bottom lip. That face, he cups her breasts, mashing and pinching with his large hands.
I see her on the lift most mornings, we say hello and I see him at the mailboxes. I draw them in those moments, too, later, from memory. I sketch her hair, long and straight, and the run that stretches down the calf of her stockings. Her wide smile, the lipstick on her teeth. Him, fumbling his keys, struggling to manipulate the tiny mailbox lock. I start with his face, centred on the page. It lacks the symmetry of hers. His forehead, his mouth, contort with frustration and a hint of sadness in that instant before he notices me. We talk about football, about cricket.
I draw them eating, also, together at a local restaurant. I haven't seen them there, but I imagine him ordering pizza with bacon on it, and her spinach lasagne with a shared garlic bread; it's Italian. His thick fingers clutch a grease-stained serviette, they cover his mouth completely. His eyes, shifted left, glance at the waitress. She kisses a glass of red, head back, eyes not fixed on anything. I part her hair down the middle, and with my pencil I caress the fingers on her spare hand as they stir the ice in his water glass.
Lately I have been drawing them alone more frequently. He runs. His tight fists punch the air and beads of sweat drip down his face like big fat tears. His mouth hangs wide open. She sits at a desk, in her pyjamas, writing letters longhand. A stray hair falls onto her sleeve. Her lips, naked, shade themselves red; the only colour besides grey on my page.
One day I will invite them to my apartment to view my collection of them. They will laugh at first, hold hands, kiss, they will point. Then slowly they will understand and I will be ready with my pencil and my paper. This will be my final drawing.