who told you you could? who said you were allowed? when did you first do it, slipped out from under the watchful eye of anyone who would forbid you? or could? what does it sound like when you talk out loud to yourself. in the mirror or looking up or looking out. how does your voice sound different when it reverberates off the walls or pops in the air in the day-time? or bounces off of your reflection and back down your own throat? what does your own name sound like to you? you got something to say. it’s going to come out whether we like it or not. whether you want it to or not. you want it to.
is it like dinner? warm, and in your mouth? satisfying? is it coming through your body, like the sun coming in and then shining out at the same time? the sun is right there in your mouth. the light is shining through your teeth. like through the cracks in a window, we can all see it. i swear.
is it cold, and wet, on your hands? how fervently are you drying them, back and forth, scraping, palm and back of the hand on your starchy jeans. palm and back of the hand. up and down. first it slides off like droplets and then its coming out in sheets. who knew you could be like God. like thunderstorms from the tips of your fingers. it might just feel wet. "they're wet because i just washed," getting caught at a strange time, like, "they’re clean." "i’m clean, i swear.” You swear.
is it like sleeping with the window open? on top of bed and in and even under? one foot hanging off? both? got the window open, fresh air coming in? for me, it’s trapped between two buildings, not fresh at all. it slips in over the course of the night when it wants to. it is like my lover standing at the top of the staircase. i picture her like this: low white heels. khaki coat. platinum blonde, updo, coiffed. standing on the top stair, dangling one foot back, holding herself like she might turn away and run down and out the door in front of me. like she might turn on her heel and not stay with me tonight, or any night, and then won't call. i’m saying, you can come to bed, you can just go to sleep, we can just lay here and be cool. you don’t have to tease. air in the night-time taunts me now. i hope she got home safe. i wonder. that’s just how it is for me. i just live on the second floor. it’s hot up here.
is it like $20? got it pressed into your hand when you don’t need it? only good for a bit? or maybe you do need it, more than ever, you can’t believe its yours now, and, it’ll be gone soon. you ******. not surprising. unless it’s from your parents and it’s i-dont-need-it-i-dont-i-dont and they know you do so let’s all just not pretend and flatter each other. you can just call it cash. that doesn’t sound too pretty.
tell me what it’s like. that’s what you’re good for. and instilled within you is a certain ever-evident self consciousness. you are intended to constantly to doubt and ponder. why am I here? and, who is listening? and, who cares? why? why? we haven’t even got the time to answer that, there's no time, God, you're stupid, and, this has gotta be quick. why? why, because of urgency! urgency like a hungry wolf. get the words on the page, i’m starving. like a hungry wolf here. he is biting at at the corners and on the spine, he is scary and making fun and loves when you panic. he is biting with teeth and you remember his lips, too. funny. no one ever talks about a dog’s lips. but he’s got them, just like we all do. promise, say i am going to rip any wolf from the page. i am going to de-claw and go at all my metaphors with pliers. forget the wolf, actually. spit all that hair out. pull it off your tongue. take your time. it is not his story to tell. i’d say, to anyone listening, i’m doing this for you. twist and twist and tighten and, now, look at that. look at what my hands could do. crazy. i taught myself, i would tell them, if they asked. just to impress them. because i care. make them listen. is it about someone else, now? am i going to make it about and for someone that isn't me? can i trust them? are they just sitting on my chin with one ear pressed up to my mouth, just for now, keeping me around in case i got something useful to say? i'd probably trust them even if that were the case. i'd trust them even if they were doing it just to make me feel good.
when someone is listening, what do you tell them? what do they need to hear? did they need it? and, did they know they needed it? yes, yes, yes, yes. when you got someone sitting down and quiet and you swear you’re so important, they need it. they’re about to find out.
ummmm. i have a manifesto assignment for class that may have been due today in class but my dog died so i skipped. its 1:38 am and i just wrote this, hopefully it'll do.