you think i’m not a goddess?

my tongue is still raw from when i sipped tea a little too eagerly, but i find myself content and sloshy nonetheless. i’m in a glorious haze of non-hungoverness, if that can be called a thing (and it can, because i just did, so ha). in the way that i still have traces of eyeliner clinging between my lashes (like despondent sea snails perched on a rapidly-drying rock when the ocean has left them, who try but can never catch up to the fleeing tide because hello, they’re snails), my fierce warrior amazon psyche from the night before lingers in my aching bones, not quite ready to fade away and leave me with my regular self.

i mean, it’s not like she’ll ever really go away, because who do you think brought her round for drinks in the first place? but the doldrums of reality beat ever onwards, and this tantalizing phantasm would cease to intrigue if she, in all her stygian glory, rocked up in the watery sunlight of this sorry excuse of a season, blinking indignantly and revealing to the world the kind of stuff that’s easy to hide in the dinge.

y’know, like maybe her jeans are a bit too long, or her shoes are just a little too twee for her liking.

you see, the appeal of slipping into someone else’s skin is that it only happens when i’m just so goddamn ready to ditch my sweet schoolgirl self on the side of the road, coughing back the dust and forlornly still believing that my silence makes me mysterious

and not just forgettable.

she orders me a gin & tonic, smiles knowingly when i find myself drawn to its exquisite unsettling taste, then hurries me onto the dance floor, not caring that it’s

such

a

banality

to be a 21-year-old dancing to chart-toppers in a club. you think she gives a fuck what people scoff at these days? she plucks archetypes, like ripe berries off the legit shrub of prejudice, and swallows them whole.

it’s where her, like, power and shit comes from, dude.

whatever the case, i find myself rubbing my vocal chords raw and moving my body in ways that would surely be mortifying in the absence of any number of factors that make this situation what it is.

look, i know that nobody’s going to inspect my gloriously-applied gel eyeliner and nod appreciatively, or care that my aggressively-coiffed hair is fucking righteous, because once we walk up into the club like what up, I got a big cock the only thing people care about is seeking out the kind of transcendental experiences that can only be found at the bottom of a highball glass.

so i let her take over me, and her hold on me is so sublime that i cling to her as long as i can, basking in the afterglow of her spirit even while i sit at my computer, unmoving, in my pajamas for the entirety of the sun’s newest manifestation.

tomorrow i’ll get shit done. tomorrow she’ll be safely tucked away behind my ribs, unhurriedly sipping spiked tea while she awaits her next debut.

we can’t wait.

 

  • Do some pull-ups. If a man saunters by, keep doing them, but take one hand and at least three fingers off the bar and sneer at him
  • Make any and all decisions with the same gravity with which Nicholas Cage delivers “I’m going to steal the Declaration of Independence”
  • Get yourself at least one outfit that makes you feel as if punching an Austrian terrorist is just the warm-up
  • (Because it is)
  • Invest in one of those showers with the sexy glass doors, so that your lovers/enemies can see your hazy yet undoubtedly sleek figure do that hair flip thing
  • File all of the heels of your stiletto shoes into actual stilettos.
  • Find one of those Gentlemen’s Clubs wherein pipes are smoked and brandy is swirled; kick down the door wearing a leathery boobs-akimbo outfit, light up a cigar with a propane torch, and hiss, “I am no man!”. Have a Youtube clip of that Eowyn scene queued up on your phone in case someone doesn’t get the reference.
  • Learn how to say “Enchanté” and “I bet your wife couldn’t do this” in at least 17 languages
  • Carefully mark your regular lipstick so you don’t confuse it with your poison one
  • Make sure your leg can travel a vertical 180 degrees
  • Always carry a wig
  • Ride a tiger around sometimes
  • Practice your backflips in the mirror so you don’t make that weird backflip face in the heat of the moment
  • When you meet Beefchunk McRipplechest, immediately find out what his hobbies, skills, and aspirations are, and flawlessly do everything he loves with cool nonchalance. Then set his car on fire, just ’cause.
  • If you find yourself locked up in a Cambodian prison with no chance of release, simply shift into your natural form (this is almost always a large anaconda) and facilitate your own escape. Allowing others to help you in any way is punishable by death, in accordance with Hippolyta’s Sacred Code.
  • After completing any badassery, ensure that one foot lands directly in front of the other as you walk away so that your hips take out the eyes of any gawkers

Words and I have a mercurial history.

There are times when I’m graced with literature; I make friends with sepulchral and lugubrious and exsanguinate. Chewy, silky words that are teetering piles of ideas and nuances, distilled into a single, pure drop of conveyance. These are the words that sit patiently under the distant tree, waiting for me to come over and join them in the blissful shade. They are in no hurry, with no agenda but their meaning, and it worries them little if my brain stumbles on their articulation.

But sometimes I find myself locked in an elevator with a snarling, arrogant fiend. Lyricism rarely graces spoken words, but that’s beyond their concern. They are not here to make me feel good. They do not care about my inner chaos. They will snicker at my misplaced emphasis, invite others in to mock. They seek only to get their point across, vociferously, and whether or not I wish to hear them is irrelevant.

I am thoroughly shackled with the former; I have not been graced with any gift of the oratory. Asking; telling; forcing people to listen–hear–me, is done not by speech or elocution, but with inky black claws. I must be allowed to toggle ideas in my head, switch and delete and rearrange my thoughts into something coherent. Words must drip and ooze down the page, collecting scraps, before coalescing at the bottom to form a plump, shining image.

If I am one who shies away from talking, who runs away into the embrace of bounded pages and pens fast running out of fuel, then I can be sure I have an antithesis. One who burns and crackles like a firework, whose patience for my sedate, measured expression runs out faster than a hummingbird’s heartbeat. They exult in breakneck banter, in letting words tumble out of their mouth quicker than they can catch them. When they speak to me, I might have to sift through clutter, glide over iterations of “um” and “like” and “y’know”,  to grasp substance and sense. My dramatic brain has turned listening into both a chore and a respite, a bittersweet cacophony.

(There is another creature out there; one that scares and exhilarates me.  One whose charm is a black hole, who sucks the air out of the room with their entrance. They leap onto wobbling desks or languish barefoot in pastoral fields, trailing captive throngs wherever they go. They have harnessed the power of both realms, easily snatching complexity, poetry, and insight out of the esoteric cranking of their brain and splashing it across brick walls and billboards and open air. They are pied pipers, beloved and terrible with their heady influence. For it is a fearful beauty; they are the ones who wrench open the scribal cages and set words free into the auditory realm like doves into a battlefield. Everyone stops; everyone listens; everyone is spellbound.

But, I think we agree: no one man should have all that power.)

And so, to those at whom I howl, growl, yip and squeak, I say this: Wait. Pause. Don’t dismiss or be fooled or put me on a shelf somewhere. Let me write you a sonnet, an essay, a strongly worded note. A manifesto two hundred pages deep bound with twine and delivered to your front door by a woman in a trenchcoat.

I have things to say. I just can’t say them.

At least not out loud.