Doldrums

Finding Lovecraft Sexy

Love is a stairway?

“It’s weird how quickly you all say love down here,” Miranda said. Those might not have been her words, verbatim, but it is the gist of her point. And this was several years ago, when the world was still in front of us and we didn’t worry all too much about the future. When things were good between the both of us and before our personalities mucked up a good friendship.

We were sitting on Lydia’s porch as she and Jorell vanished somewhere. And they were the reason Miranda started this conversation in the first place. The couple had just formed a union and already they were throwing around the word love like candy on Halloween. And I couldn’t argue against her, nor did I want to agree with her. I was a guilty party of the love fiasco. Everyone I knew then was.

“Love is built up in stages.”

Several times in the past, I’ve been asked the same question over and over again. It’s the Haddaway single, minus the “baby don’t hurt me.” Everyone always wants someone else’s definition of love. Not because they’re too stupid to define it themselves, or because they honestly don’t know, but because love isn’t an easy thing to define. Even I find it hard to explain what love is, as there are several different types of love.

The love you have for a good book. That you carry for a good friend. The bond between a family. The type that cuts you deep in high school. The sort that makes you call the girl a funny name in elementary.

One of my former creative writing professors once told El Senor the reason he married his wife (and I’m paraphrasing here), “After years of searching for her flaws, I turned up with nothing. So why not marry her?”

Us, lying in bed, playing Every Word on my Kindle. Wasting the day in each other’s arms. Watching a movie together. Me, reading from my Lovecraft collection, she asks, “Do you have to read that sexy?” “It’s Lovecraft. I don’t think it’s supposed to be sexy.”

Just knowing that when you wake up in the morning and seeing her face, everything will never hurt again. Knowing that no matter the amount of bitterness you hold towards the world, the only thing that really makes you smile, laugh, feel even an ounce of happiness, is lying next to you.

Stream of Consciousness

Eulogy

 

Even if you don't love it

 

A dream:

“My father was a man. He wasn’t a great man, and he surely isn’t the worst of men. He didn’t teach me how to shave. Didn’t teach me what it meant to be a man. The only thing he did teach me was how to run away.”

I’m standing in a church, reading to people I don’t know, won’t know, don’t care to know. None of their faces register. None of them matter to me. I’m reading from my notes that kept me up most of the night before. Scattered thoughts to usher this man into the next. My father, the stranger. This absent lover. Who wanted affection from those he left behind, but couldn’t muster enough to return it. Birthdays were littered with broken promises. How do I make the man whose life was a mystery to me look good? How do I pretend these things?

Do I mention the year he got me a gun when I was still in elementary? How he forgot to pick me up for school that morning? Or how I had to nudge him awake because he passed out on our living room floor because he drank too much?

“My father, he lived. He drank. He died.”

That’s sums it up. It sums it for all of us.