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I just turned forty years old. I’m not married, I don’t have any kids, and I don’t have a serious romantic partner at the moment, nor any prospects really.
I couldn’t’ve seen this coming when I was young. I was raised on movies and tv shows in which the male protagonist almost always got the girl in the end no matter how flawed he was. And since I was the protagonist of my own life, I expected the same.
Forward by Rob Geisen
In my failed romantic experience I’ve found it’s easy to feel as though there are only two kinds of love:
1. Unrequited, and
2. Not Unrequited, Yet
The Energy Healer and the Drunk Carpenter
For a while I was going to see this energy healer. Every time I had a big performance I’d go get a healing from her, so I’d be at my best. She’d lay me down on her table and put her hands in my aura and try to get my chakras spinning in the right direction again.
“Oh, they’re barely moving at all,” she’d say. “Your energy can’t even reach past your skin.”
“I know,” I’d say. “Life just seems to grind me down to a standstill sometimes.”
I was in New York City. Place of overcrowding, and cynicism, and stink. The largest city in America.
It was the night before a friend’s wedding, and I had time to kill, and the only thing I could think to do was go to this bar to find a Boulder poet girl’s long lost father. All I knew was he was last seen drinking there sometime in the 80s, he might look kinda like his daughter, and his name was O’Neal.
Me and New Girlfriend Kiss in an Alley
We were in the alley outside The Ritz costume store. She pointed at a chandelier inside.
“I really like chandeliers,” she said. “I like old-fashioned things that are full of light.”
“Me&You, Both,” I said.
“MEN, DON’T write about women undressing anymore,” a woman on Twitter said.
I didn’t know her. It was just retweeted into my feed. But she seemed like an agent or editor or someone with some influence in the literary world.
And it made me think of all the women I’d written about undressing…
Panties ‘n Dog
Her body hasn’t been here for awhile, but her panties still are. Somewhere over on the other side of the room.
The dog is still here too. She’ll grab the panties in her mouth and bring them over to my side of the room. We’ll be watching a show or something together, and I’ll look over and see the dog chewing on them.
Your Dead Scorpion
Baby, I love how you have a dead scorpion on your pillow it’s my favorite thing about you I like to watch it decompose together rotting claws stinger mush exoskeleton odors
“I Like Your Edge”
“I like your edge,” she told me in a certain way with a certain look.
It was during my poetry open mic heyday when my readings attempted to convey some kinduv inner blade. Quick, precise and metal forged, splitting vulnerable solids apart, always on the verge of drawing blood, shining as it swiped.
Happy Birthday 2X
“Did you wash your hands?” she asked me again.
I knew I couldn’t touch her face until I did.
“I did,” I told her.
“You know you have to scrub for at least twenty seconds for it to actually kill all the germs,” she said.
Look, Man, I’m Not Gonna Write about a Failed Bowerbird Yet, Okay?
In the Notes app on my iPhone I have a folder called “ideas” where I log inspirations for future writing pieces. Sometimes it’s a line, sometimes just a word, sometimes a whole concept.
I’ve had this one in there for awhile that just says “Failed Bowerbird.” And every so often I get an urge to follow up on it that I hafta kill.