The Shit Eyes of Love, pt. 1*

Biting my face like a cannibal, the wind rips a newspaper off of the sidewalk and plants it firmly onto my left shin. I look down and read a headline that is moving forward and backward that says “Delaney Pleads His Innocence; Many Doubt”. The cigarette burning in my gloved hand nears the end of its life and I throw it to its quick death in the street. The wind now tells me to go home, seek shelter. My feet tell me to sit down. My mind tells me to find a body of water and jump into it. I turn the corner and am met by another human possibly pondering the same mortal decisions as I. He quickly moves to his right as I to my left, forcing us into the head-on battle as before. We both dance. We both stop. I go to my right, him to his. Never a word was spoken. We both know that we will die like that, in a dance.

Everything is a goddamn dance.

I walk on, despite the wind and feet and mind, towards the train that takes me home. The streetlights are out all the way down the block suffocating any safety I might feel in this decrepit neighborhood. The empty buildings exude the stench of a proprietor’s stifled dream. The plywood sits in the sills of fights between immigrant spouses and bloody language between parents and children. A liquor store is the sole source of light since earth’s clouds covered us up for the night. The bell rings as I open the door, awakening the cashier dozing in the droll of life. The exchange is made, whiskey for cash, and I burst onto the sidewalk with a newfound disgust for myself and for everything that I could hit by throwing my bottle.

I sidestep a puddle of urine descending into the subway station. The buzzing of florescent lights recess my testicles, returning them to their motherland, my cavity. A man is waiting for someone to give him change and I haven’t even the humanity to give him a fair grunt. I position myself like a race horse into the turnstile and penetrate the mechanical slot with the subway card. Pushing myself through, I approach the tracks with expectancy as if something else, like a parade float or an island of mermaids, will be arriving shortly. I wonder if it is possible to feel yourself, second by second, wasting away, to forever vanish into only the memory of the few that know you. I feel my skin wrinkling with age and my teeth yellowing, falling out like melting icicles. Trying my best to look like a gentleman, I lean against a pole to support myself from my quickening of breath. The distant rumble of the train reminds me (and I don’t know why) that I have no desire to leave this world but, rather, for this world to leave me.

The train arrives and opens the door welcoming me inside with a synthetic bell signifying that there’s no waiting and no turning back because the “DOORS ARE CLOSING”. The air inside is stale, despite the constant movement through the underground tunnels and open air elevated tracks. The colors mix together into a vomit brown as my eyes swirl from one open seat to another. I choose one that is placed in the middle of the window to give myself the feeling of being outside in spite of the controlled environment that I actually rest in. The train coughs into movement and the click clack increases in pulse. Like pudding-filled bags of clothing, the passengers dance together the dance of the numbered and the dead.

Everything is a goddamn dance.

Drowning me is confusion because I can’t feel movement. I’m anxious because I feel like I am never going to get to my destination. I’m nervous because I don’t want to arrive at the destination. I’m confused because goddamn it I can’t feel movement. I can’t feel change of direction. I can’t feel anything except distilled – my soul working its way out of my body through its pores, leaving a stale smell of liquor in the air surrounding me. The hot, humid air surrounding me. I am producing a great amount of heat, but yet I can’t feel anything! Did my body burn my nerves away? Am I brain-dead, unable to realize the rules of physics? Am I to be left with only an inner monologue until eternity dries up like a baby left buckled into a safety seat on a sweltering summer city day…unaware that crying and screaming is actually killing it faster? (A baby cries for its mother. I cry to a doorknob, a wall, and a dirty plate. Because of that I stopped crying.)

Somebody says something to me. I remain motionless. I am waiting for the missiles. I am waiting for the sterile gauze to keep me from dying. The man that spoke to me stopped waiting for an answer and sat next to me, answering my question of what was said: “Is anyone sitting here?” I want to inform him that no one is sitting even where I sit…but kept quiet, not wanting to explain or to get into any sort of theological debate. Does he smell my soul bleeding? (My sight is filled with clouds of white. The more that I blink, the worse it gets. I have feeling! ((It is only the sensation of dying)).) I want to take my dick out of my pants and just hold it…the warmth of a living, breathing thing in my hands. I need the gauze quickly. I need a moment to place the gauze up my ass and onto my soul. I don’t want to leave the train until every orifice is vomiting gauze. People might look at me but people also look at fashion magazines. I snap back into normalcy (I think that’s what we call it). I wonder what people care about and I want to be given the same choices. I don’t know if I do care about the same things. I don’t think that I want to. Fever strikes. The soul reprimands me for straying so far away from the agony of the death of self, the rebirth of the mind. The Christian dies to become the angel. The plastic dies to become the automobile. The mind dies to become one with its surroundings. I am dying so that others may live.

Who is there? I hear a knocking but Jesus died long ago. A homeless man killed him…Isaac was his name. He informed me of the fact just for giving him a cigarette. The savior position is open and I think that I need a change of places. To be set so high above the world makes it easier to shit on everything at once. Amen!

I instinctively clutch my paper bag as the man next to me raises to get off of the train. I look around me and realize that no one notices my sweating or my thoughts. I force a blink to focus on my surroundings. Looking out of the window I notice a sign that tells me I am already one stop away from home. I place the bag between my legs and rub my thighs warm with my clammy hands. A sigh drips out and I get ready to depart the train.

Another cough and another jerk of the head and we are all moving through the black urethra tunnel. Soon the sperm will be spit out to birth the city with hundreds of hungry orphans pissing and shitting their money into the drinking water. (That, in itself, happens hundreds of times a day…how is it that we are not thirstier?) Pushing, muttering orphans dancing together like enemies…enemies with the same king.

There is a worker mopping the floor of the station as I step off of the train. I read the yellow hinged sign, “Watch Your Step”; he tells me the same thing, adding “man” to the end of it. The air smells like a chemical pine forest and I sneeze. If a body slips and falls in a chemical pine forest and no one is there, will a lawyer hear a sound? The baby blue stairs to street level are fitted with grip tape on the lips and the handrails are bumpy with multiple coats of navy blue paint. The air that strokes my face like a lover becomes chillier with every step that I ascend. I try to breathe in as much as possible to push out the remnants of the last twenty minutes. Like a turtle, I bury my head as deep as possible into my upturned collar as the noise on the street surrounds me. As I watch my feet swing like pendulums beneath my stationary torso, pounding the pavement deeper into to the earth it suffocates, I wonder what key the hum of the city is in. Loneliness is in the key of E minor, love, C major. I hum in F# minor, the key of alarm and surprise, as I wait for the orange hand halting to switch to the white man walking.

The black sky is reflected on the damp street. Between the passing cars hissing, I listen to my breath, bringing life and exhausting death. My sweaty palm softens the paper wrapped bottle, quieting its crinkles to mumbles. I find that I am yielding it like a weapon, holding the neck so that the body rises upward through the dimple of my clenched fist. I hear a tree rustling to my left and stiffen for the wind that is yet to reach my face. My body moves slightly to the left with the invisible current. I correct Mother’s nudge and think about Courtney.

Globular brown eyes (shit-eyes) are staring at me in an innocence that I take as unfamiliarity. Stunning brown hair (shit-hair) swooping across the flawless (save for the minute scar from a bicycle accident at the age of nine) forehead, asking me to smooth it aside. Despite the tone or the subject, in the voice a command is always heard. On the sides of the head hang those ears (small, wonderful ears) that don’t hear a damned thing. The cheeks give a permanent pout and the chin joins in on the game. This trophy sits atop a long sculpted neck, smooth and pristine and vaguely hinting at the blue jugular rivers underneath. Following the invisible lover’s hands down, you will inevitably find them clutching breasts; humble mounds of tissue that scream to be heard. The caps that they wear are oblong and kissed with dimples and a small mouth that tells you what to do though you attempt to strangle it in a violent exercise of lust. The smooth, peach-fuzzed belly heaves with words and the impressible arms hold in the evidence of being only scarcely well fed. Strong thighs wrap around in a time of need and pose lustfully when pushed away. Between these mountains of instability lives Courtney’s Center; the scanty, Hitler mustache rests upon full lips that breathe the breath of the ancient language that is understood but never defined; in this I keep my home.

The front door flags me down with stickered numbers and I fish my keys from the sea of my pocket. The door creaks and my steps sound like thunder in the reverberating wooden entryway. I check the mailbox and my stomach drops at the discovery of its contents…nothing. From that I know that she is home. It is 7:30 in the evening and I was hoping that she would be at work until 8:00. It is Tuesday, I now remember. She works until 6:00 on Tuesdays. The stairs wait for me to apply each one of their purposes and I have no choice but to. Scream by scream, the creaks of the aged steps sound like dead cats still groaning to be given a tenth chance. I clutch the bottle tighter and close my eyes to recite a silent prayer: Let me think clearly and let no innocent bird fall in the mayhem.

I feel as if I make a crucial life decision every time I stand in front of the apartment door, and this time is no different. Opening it, I subject myself to one more day of resentment, one more empty conversation about goings-on, one more day closer to our fiftieth anniversary. A life! Turning around and returning to the street, I would be flaccid on the ground waiting for anything that wanted to pick and peck me apart to freely do so. After this sprint, I shall not run from anything again! The words of my father: “You’re a good boy, you just make bad decisions.” The key turns in the lock and I sentence myself to one more day.

*Part two is coming shortly.

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Comments
4 Responses to “The Shit Eyes of Love, pt. 1*”
  1. sealegs says:

    i love this story. i read the beginnings of this story so long ago on your computer while you were out and loved the title so much – when i saw it i spoke aloud i thought OH GOD HITLER STASH FINALLY. i’m waiting for the ones about jerking off on the train.

    “you have a landline message from johnny……I WILL GET FAT FOR YOU.” i hope above all other things that it was MY johnny.

  2. The conversation went as such:

    J-I’m just sick of this shit. I wanna date Kate.
    MB-She only likes big guys.
    J-I’ll get fat for Kate.

    Congrats. People would risk their health to be with you.

  3. RJ says:

    AAAAHHHH, I’m putting it ALL TOGETHER NOW! Holy cow.

    Johnny tells me everything but doesn’t tell me shit.

    Buckets — get your ass published. You’re a brilliant motherfucking writer but you knew that already.

  4. Zalecenia says:

    humiliate or be-little (29) go along. (23) outstanding dreadlocks (1) a dragon (29)

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