Wednesday, June 11, 2014

The Honest Truth

I can’t feel the tips of my fingers.
I find that when I dart my eyes quickly side to side that I become dizzy.
And I know that I’m drunk, but I refuse to tell anyone.
I like to pretend that I had my last drink a few months ago, but that’s only what I tell people who don’t know any better.
No one likes to hear that you gave in when the going got tough.
No one likes to hear much of anything for that matter, unless they’re the topic.

We’re a selfish bunch, you know.
These people that I group myself with.
Hoping that I am amongst friends, but you never can tell.
I’m still high from the last drag I took in the car, but I can tell that I’m sobering up.
My eyes are weak, and this song gets longer each time it plays.
This desk sits neatly above my knees, keeping it all together.
Placing a self-imposed box around me.
It can’t cage my thoughts though.
My mind isn’t here.
Its off somewhere between the thighs of a woman, digging deeper with every breath.
Lying on the cold hard wood, I find that the grain pressed against my cheeks reminds me of my grandfather’s living room.
Splinters were temporary, but I had enough to make me lift my face off the ground.
The sound of my grandmother’s voice echoes down the hallways of my heart and she tells me “I’m her favorite”.
I know she’s telling the truth.
The other kids don’t talk to her the way that I do.
Or did, before she passed.

I just want to smoke.
To take another long deep hit from my dirty brown pipe, but there isn’t time nor is this the place.
I’m afraid they might frown upon a mid-day bake session.
Smoke lingering in the air like bad breath.
The kind of bad that a breath mint can’t help with.
I don’t really care however, so I stand, slide my keys in my pocket and head towards the elevator.
If I smoke now I’ll be high for one of the remaining three hours.
Not a bad ratio.
It’s better than being sober for all three.
The clock ticks, and I find myself waiting at the shaft.

She said that she wanted to see me, so who am I to deny her of that?
Besides, it feels good, and I haven’t felt good in a while.
If I don’t focus my vision too hard, I fade out, and in those moments I can see her lying naked on the bed.
Her eyes rolled into the back of her head, she bites on her bottom lip.
My arms pulling her thighs into my neck.
Her hands search for something to grasp, and her fingers find my hair.
She pulls, I pull back.
My tongue travels inside of her, and with a gasp she grows silent.
The elevator opens and I step inside.
I never expected to be wet somewhere below the second floor, but when my feet hit the garage pavement I am.
My cheeks flush and I hurry to the car.
I turn the key and Urbie Green spills through the speakers.
The sway of the Big Band fills my car like the smoke I’m about to inhale.
I sit for a moment, taking in the fumes of the music.
They fill my mind, each note vibrating off the last.
Three puffs later and my head leans gently against the rest.
This time she’s straddling me.
Completely naked, her skin covers mine.
She’s wet too.

I still can’t understand why she’s into me the way that she is.
Probably because I push her away.
She calls me strange and weird.
Complicated and complex.
Then asks me out to dinner on Friday.
She doesn’t have to buy me dinner to get laid, but I’m not sure how to tell her this so I smile and nod.
I’m a foodie after all.
The elevator dings behind me and I know I have to get back.
Someone probably has a package for me to deliver, or a story for me to hear.
It’s not rocket science, but I really ought to take it more seriously.

I’ve not been myself for the last few weeks.
I think it’s from rebelling against the old ball and chain.
Imagine. A lifetime together with one other person.
I hyperventilate even thinking about it.
Not to mention I’m high… the anxiety consumes me and I force myself to laugh.
Maybe I should cancel.
Maybe dinner is too much, too soon.

Or maybe I should go and not think about it and get her off.
Take some of the stress off her shoulders that she talked about last time.
I’m good at it after all.
By the fourth floor I realize I’m no longer wet.
Or I’ve gotten so used to it, I can’t feel it anymore.
It makes me feel a little dirty.
So unlike I used to be.
My phone vibrates.
My past is texting me.

“You know how you’ve always put me first and made me feel so wanted?”
I want to scream “Of course I know, you asshole. You know how you never did the same?”
But that’s not the role that I have taken, so I poetically respond with “Yes.”
“I want that. I’m impatient. She’s not there yet.” She says.
It’s just another stupid reminder that she never once felt a thing for me, but this girl loved the attention.
She wants to be wanted, and I still can’t help but oblige.
There’s just something about those eyes that held me on that bed in Michigan and suffocated my free will.
I’m far too high for this conversation, but I never could walk away when she needed me.
I remind her that she had that once and let it go.
I suggest that maybe she likes the chase instead.
“You’re right again.” She says.
“I often am.” I say.

For a moment all I can see is the way she looked at me.
Empty and hollow.
I wanted to find something there in her eyes, but there was nothing but space waiting to be filled up with lies and sex.
I wouldn’t go there.
I didn’t know how.
For the first time since I was sixteen my nerves got the better of me and I laid there in her bed, my hands to myself.
Her body, a foreign country, and I don’t speak any other language besides “hopeless romance.”
It’s different from the language of love. More pathetic.
Giving in I hold her.
Her head on my chest, I can almost hear her thinking about how she wished I were someone else.
Someone taller, maybe.

It’s crazy how an elevator can lift me out of reality.
Taking me all the way back to last June.
Dropping me off on a back porch in Gun Lake, looking out over the water.
As my feet carry me down the pier, I noticed the gum soles on her shoes.
It’s been a while since I’ve seen a pair like that.
Orange-brown. Dirty.
A lot like my pipe, but I doubt I could smoke those.
Something tells me leather and socks leave little to be desired.
When she tells me that she’s happy I made it, I want to believe her.
But the sadness in her voice tells me that she might not really mean it.
I doubt even she knows whether or not she does.
A year and a few tears later I say yes to a dinner I don’t really want so I can forget about the things that I do.
I take sex in the place of love, and a casual commitment in the form of an understanding.
I have something she wants, and she has something I need.
There’s just something about the scent of a woman that I never could walk away from.
I need it.
Like a drug, I need it.

As I step off the elevator, still high, I shake the sex from my eyes and walk back into the office.
Tucking my knees neatly back under the desk,
I wait… stoned out of my mind.

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