So I didn’t put up the radiators yet but I will soon which who even knows why I am telling you this, it is not like the internet is going to hold me accountable for decorating my apartment. I hung a few things though and that was good. we emptied all the boxes and filled what shelves could be filled and the rest will just have to make do with what they have got until such a time as they don’t anymore.
I’ve been thinking about border and boundaries and distance lately, distance as opposed to perspective, the sort of distance placed between people rather than a naturally occurring kind of travel. I don’t know always how to articulate the things that I think and feel, which is how come stories, which is how come poems, which is how come my language tricks itself into other things than what I mean so that I don’t have to talk directly at the issue, because I barely ever understand the issue. An issue though is this thing I talk to people about sometimes when I talk to people, about how I don’t like there to be boundaries, by which I mean I don’t like the idea of a guarded heart, in whatever sense it is. I have this idea sometimes about how if we didn’t do that, if we didn’t put up boundaries like that between ourselves, then. I don’t know. It’s got to be more complicated than the idea that nothing should be between two people except the air between two people. That fear begets fear and love begets love and indifference begets indifference and criminalizing poverty begets America, and I don’t know. I don’t have any answers and most of the time I think I get the question wrong.
I bought WHITE GIRLS the other day and I just cannot even with how good it is. TRISTES TROPIQUES which is this fucking novella length thing that opens it just kept wrecking me and then maybe going on a bit and then wrecking me again and the language of it and the heart of it and the way it searches and doubts and searches and searches and insists on the need to search, to twin, on how Hilton Als goes through the world, I just. It’s a thing, and it’s great, and its wondrous, and there is this sentence, or I count it as a sentence because I don’t think a question signals an end, because sometimes a comma is just a thing we trip on and fall into the next sentence and sometimes anything can be a comma, anything can be something you fucking trip over, which gives you pause, which pauses, which contines, which goes, and which I am typing here because fuck everything
I was an I, an opera of feeling with a very small audience, a writer of articles about culture but with no real voice, living in a tiny one-bedroom apartment in the Crown Heights section of Brooklyn, a dream of love growing ever more expansive because it was impossible, especially in the gay bars I sometimes frequented in Manhattan, where AIDS loved everyone up the wrong way, or in a way some people weren’t surprised by, particularly those gay men who were too indifferent to be sad—-in any case night sweats were a part of the conversation people weren’t having in those bars, in any case, taking your closest friend in because he was shunned by his family was part of the conversation people weren’t having, still, there was this to contend with: his coughing and wheezing in the little room off your bedroom in Brooklyn because TB was catching, your friends didn’t want you to catch it, loving a man was catching, your friends didn’t want you to get it; his skin was thin as onionskin, there was a lesion, he couldn’t control his shit, not to mention the grief in his eyes, you didn’t want to catch that; those blue eyes filled with why? Causing one’s sphincter to contract, your heart to look away, a child’s question you couldn’t answer, what happened to our plans, why was the future happening so fast? You didn’t want to catch that, nor the bitterness of the sufferer’s family after the death, nor the friends competing for a bigger slice of the death pie after the sufferer’s death, you certainly didn’t want to catch what it left: night sweats, but in your head, and all day, the running to a pay phone to share a joke, but that number’s disconnected, your body forgets, or rushes toward the love you remember, but it’s too late, he’s closer to the earth now than you are, and you certainly don’t want to catch any of that.
And just this thing in this essay, this thing with other people, I can’t say it because I’ll say it wrong, he calls it twinship, and it’s like that, but it’s different, he talks about not wanting to be an I but a We, as though the two were different, as though a We wasn’t two I’s agreeing to do a thing without saying it. Someone was talking to me on friday I think and maybe Saturday, on Saturday it was Lisa, Lisa said something about never wanting to be trapped, about being trapped by other people, and I just didn’t know what to do about that, about a thought like that, because there are so many things I don’t know what to do with. Other people, to me, aren’t traps. I’m a trap. My fucked brain is a trap except when I can get it to get out of the way and function more as an engine than as a thing that gets to make decisions or worry about anything. I get stuck in loops a lot is why I need to always have music going or something in the background when I read or write, I need to be able to have my brain just distracted enough to let me say something, to let me understand what it is that is happening enough to be able to get my mouth around it and wrap it in enough language that I can understand it. At the end of the day I feel like there’s my own loneliness and my capacity for trying and failing to love as many people as humanly possible.
Sometimes a thing that happens when it all feels like my life is a like a fart, or some other kind of shitshow, I watch this and I watch this and I watch this and I think about that time Windham Earle said “What is your greatest fear?” and then Garland Briggs he said “The possibility that love is not enough.” And Alex reminded me about that because Alex is a fucking miracle, and anyway, here is the thing I watch to remind me that you can never feel enough, not ever, and I can’t figure out how to embed it because I don’t even know anymore, and anyway it’s here, it’s right here, for you
Son, may I share something with you?
A vision I had in my sleep last night. As distinguished
from a dream, which is a mere sorting and cataloguing
of the day’s events by the subconscious; a vision, fresh
and clear as a mountain stream, the mind revealing itself
In my vision I was on the verandah of a vast estate, a
palazzo of some fantastic proportion. There seemed to
emanate from it, a light from within this gleaming,
radiant marble. I ha known this place. I had, in fact,
been born and raised there and this was my first return, a
reunion with the deepest wellsprings of my being. As I
wandered about I noticed happily that the house had
been immaculately maintained and there had been
added to it a number of additional rooms but in a way
that blended in so seamlessly with the original
construction one would never detect any difference.
Returning to the house’s grand foyer, there came a knock
at the door. I opened it. My son was standing there. It
wasn’t you, but in a way it was. He was happy and
carefree, clearly living a life of deep harmony and joy.
We embraced, a warm and loving embrace, nothing
witheld. We were, in this moment, one. My vision
ended and I awoke with an overwhelming feeling of
optimism and confidence about you and your future.
That was my vision of you.
I’m so glad I’ve had this opportunity to share it with
Major Briggs rises and extends a hand. He and Bobby shakes hands.
MAJOR BRIGGS (CONTINUED)
I wish you nothing but the very best in all things.
I am going to mount my radiators on the wall this week like I’ve been meaning to do since my dad brought them up for me back after Christmas and by radiators I mean once I had an art show and I built out of cardboard some radiators, and I am going to mount them on the wall of my room above the red couch which has a bit more give than I’d like but it was there in my room when I moved and that was really something I thought since normally what I’d buy would be in all likelihood pale grey but this was red and that’s something, it really is, and they’ll be next to the deer head and across from the painting that always goes by my bed and then soon over my bed I’ll make some window frames because fuck it. These days I am nannying because it’s worked out like that and in the mornings why not build some things and input edits and look out in the world for things as though the world was a place that had anything for me at all because hey who knows because life, it is a mystery, and everyone, they must stand alone