epilogue (x2) = fickle fickle (F/T?)
[1 september 2010]
I spoke for several hours, but by the time I finished, somehow it was you who’d lost your voice—I left you speechless, you said, over the noise of the crowded bar, over the huge absurdity of the whole drama and jaded mess.
You have this strange way of maintaining distance, you once said. I have to, I told you. This is what I meant. When I do not keep the truth in check, it all comes tumbling out at once, and then I am nothing but a fully exposed walking wreck.
“If I am such a wise man, then why couldn’t you trust my instincts?
If I am so damn honest, then why disbelieve all those truths that I could always see?
I don’t perform well on bent, bleeding knees.
I don’t hope, I don’t pray, I don’t try to believe.
I don’t need a parachute, or insurance policies—
Maybe that is exactly what’s all wrong with me.”
You were with me there that day, I really saw you, and for once, maybe for a moment, I think that you saw me too.
We were talking about the problem of genuine performance and psychotropic ink. We were talking eye to eye, neither of us daring to look down, or blink. I was standing there on a tightrope, fire licking at my toes. I juggled several butterfly blades at once; you caught an eyelash, wingdust, a taste bud. A sliver of my nose. I wanted you to run some tests, check my DNA. Creation. Decay. It was that kind of serious. It was that kind of play. Sober. No joke. A matter of the utmost. I told you to grin and stick your tongue out at me and I did the same. An ancient game.
A smoking mirror.
A serpent intertwine.
(Inches from my face, all I could think about was how badly I wanted that tongue against mine. Words dissolving into unspoke, the sublime. You rolled your eyes, I rolled my eyes.)
Instinct. Don’t think/blink.
“The truth is that the soul is rocked every day, in every way.
The truth is that love is not built of the addictive need for another to induce fleeting euphoria in oneself. Love is not a rescue mission. Love is not proven by how much you/they bleed/need.
Love is the true, singular convergence underlying all others. Love has no time or place for fickle self-deceit. Love is the generative sharing of ecstasy already present, it is a convergent, propulsive intertwine—hearts, bodies, spirits, minds. It is the soul, this combination—everybody’s rightful inheritance to claim and shape. Not yours, not mine. Just our potential and realized sublime.”
The first epilogue was digitally erased, washed away like the light that day.
Looking up later from the sand and the Earth star long gone, we’d stopped the world, tilted it on its side to face other night suns, the two of us intertwined for hours on the beach, flickering. Stardust to stardust, each to each. A perpetual dissolution in progress, an intermingling:
Honest lies, fickle truths, fickle fictions, flickering disbelief.
Later when you returned from that ancient sinking city with your second Nahua dream, beneath my disappointment, once again, was a kind of intuitive relief. History repeats, and repeats, and repeats. The bittersweet victory of habitual defeat. Pattern patter. Proving yourself again early on in the game, just enough time for me to safely retreat.
Bits of sand, saliva, wind. Still clinging to our skin, making our way back to the world again.
Your smell. Your taste.
Some of it embedded several layers beneath, permanently. The rest: Erased—
—wind snaps cold. My hands with yours, my lips with yours, nothing on my tongue but yours, wet, warm, no words, this song of praise, making soul, making face, mirroring each other in this smoking space, in lak’ech, a faithful leap—cynicism is for the weak. I choose the poet over prose. Stop the world. Unfurl. Unfold.
~ F I N ~
[for V—all of it]
text + image copyright ©2010 by Ruben R. Mendoza. All rights reserved.
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