Thursday, January 21, 2010

No one wants to get Scurvy

Seated at a cluttered dining room table, wine & whisky poured, sunlight streaming through the window on bi-color funerary roses in a chipped vase. Her back arched like a cat so her cheek could get kissed by the winter sun (its warmth is rare, and best to catch when you have the time…no one wants scurvy and limes are expensive at this time of year). He watched her and wondered if she would still tie her hair back in pig-tales when her hair has gone gray and if her hips were always as pronounced or if having children just highlighted her already existing curves (in the right way, the kind of highlights that make most housewives blush and long for a surgeon or join a gym…she just took up belly dancing in the living room or foggy mornings in the Spring). They talked about the past in the present, letting those days transfer with each breath. There was always something that led to the discourse of reality being good or being alive.

This time it started with a list in a chain email asking about “scandalous” activity…now what’s scandalous to some might be common practice to others. “Have you ever had sex in a church?”…she looked crooked at the computer screen and thought for a second or two, “nope, but I have been touched by the son of a preacher man while sleeping with a girl on the side”. (the next question was ‘have you ever had sex someone of the same sex’ followed by ‘have you ever cheated on anyone’?. She had the holy trinity). He never flinched, a coy grin appeared and his head cocked sideways and then came the chuckle. “I started in the middle and haven’t missed one!” They pressed lips and sipped their beverage, running those memories with the same flicker in their eye as old movie reels, getting more and more grainy but finding pockets of light in the remembered dialogue.

“Modern poetry is as lost as cats on a windowsill” he mumbled just above the glass. “Wait….what’d you answer about having sex for money?” They both stared blankly for a breath. She spoke first, “no I haven’t…or have I, you must remember. Have I? I suppose we all have in one way or another” (verbal run-off is a side effect of sulfites and sunlight). That’s the problem being a member of the touch generation, bodies are no longer off limits when your upbringing centers on freedom being equal to pleasure. Its hard to move past core principles even after a proper education (its hard to be good but so good to be hard). Together they counted change and came correct. They decree that laughter is nothing more than a public orgasm, it shows the willing what they are in for.

He sits back as she continues her work, like a monkey he picks pills from her sweater and piles them on the table. Its encouraging to have someone else care for your appearance when showers are rewards for hard work. The past is hard and can’t be washed off, like a stain on a favorite shirt that can be explained away as an abstract design, even if it clashes with the rest of the plaid.

They agree they have completed the list but can’t decide on the words…guilty…sinner…experimentalist…existentialist….nihilist…human…alive.


The commercial on the radio reminds her of her current obligation…”Hey kids, do you want Kid Cuisine for dinner?” A chorus of ‘yesssssss’ follows her as she walks barefoot into the kitchen with the saunter of her youth and the experience of her age. He sits and watches, caressing the pile of sweater bits, placing them in his pocket next to the pressed forget me not.