Beauty is not the only attractor

The night ends. The hundred candles are a mere resemblance of what they were six hours ago. I still recall the warm invigorating scent. I still see the shadows dancing on walls that extended 20 feet into the sky. The inner courtyards exposed a veil of stars and a faint light shone from the watching moon. The evening, perfect. The setting, unreal. 16th century, Moorish palette, an ambience, a perfect canvas.

We sit 18 feet under beamed ceilings and our feet kiss Italian tiles. The shadows cast from the archways obscure a grotto so inviting, magical, that I consider a short hiatus from the dinner. The secrets behind each passage and open area intrigue me, their provided breezes sustain me. She used the crystal and the silver, I learn as I shamefully place the silver in the washer.

I see him watching me from the corner of my eye. I am the “flame” this evening. He the moth. Our conversations are disparate, yet he continues to listen. He has only been here two days, but he feels “home.” I overhear him lean in and tell the host.

I walk. And he follows. I lean and the blue Italian tiles of the counter caress the small of my back. I smile. And he tells me I am a closed-book. We return to the table, now cleared, all of our glasses remain flickering in the light. We lean in over no less than twenty candles between us. Their light illuminates our expressions, our engaged eyes and connection. He continues, “a listener, an observer.” I accept these words, his sentiments a compliment. My mind travels and questions my storytelling moments. Earlier I stood hands up, “don’t shoot”—the table in tears. This is going in my book he said.

My mind returns pensive to our conversation. The others go outside gifting us with solitude, urging an intimacy or sensing a connection, I presume. Awareness in my acquaintances. A trait, I much admire. He recants my earlier words, the look in my eyes, he smiles and his eyes now ignite as he assigns an exact number to my mention of the word “balance.” My words are all noted. They were too by the others. A thesaurus, I am not. But this evening, my words captured.

I get up to use the restroom, the inviting grotto smiles in its darkness. I glance at my phone. 2am has approached too easily. Empty bottles placed in a perfect line. Our responses to each scrawled in pencil on the labels by the hostess. I don’t revive the intimacy. I don’t return to him and our table. It is time to leave. My colleague and I say goodbye. Light and empty promises of everyone seeing each other this coming evening.

The hostess lets us out the 20 foot wooden door. We leave and walk up the cobblestone street. The camera clicks. Moments captured on her wide format lens. Blurred images in the quiet street. Without flash. Simply outlines. Memories.

My colleague asks if I know who he is. He informs me.

He is here taking a break from his life of power . . . attaining balance.

Is this just me?

Tears. Are stuck inside. As i paid my bill to a meal that I couldn’t eat, I thought the floodgates would open upon leaving. For once  my face would be kissed with tears. I was wrong. I walked to the ocean. Stared into a darkness that was only interrupted by the saliva of the waves crashing. Fought the torment. The desire to numb. Feel the pain, I plead with myself. I question, what does that mean. 

I write as I fight the path of which offers comfort. A support that I can offer myself. Requires no one. It calls my name. yet, I have been so good. So proud. The consequences swirl insignificantly to the strength of the solace, my drug.

I fight. I try to write. I sit here, in torture. With this pain, this keyboard and words that are not flowing. Words that are not healing. The sadness stuck behind these veils that are eyes. The pain, this void is inexplicable. 

This morning my tear ducts were also activated, yet also not fully employed. But the catalyst was happiness. A fragment of a dream. A passion felt. A plan. It still breathes, but my heart is suffocated, constrained and I wonder how it continues to beat. I hurt.

I am on the brink of something that awakens me, the me that has long been asleep. So close to finding a feeling that I forgot how to feel. Passion. Yet within the same day, now I sit, hollow. Lonely. I think of the players in my life, the cast of which I write. I think of the texts that fill my phone. And the texts that escape it. I breathe, move and live with a void. The highs, the dreams, the excitements I have felt only emphasize that I am not whole. That there is no companion, family or friend with whom to share. That when i need, suddenly no one is there. 

 . . . And the pain that this is me. And it will be, always.

A story in eyes

Thoughts indistinct.  Movement without significance. No moments this past weekend elicit a painting. I write of noise.

A weekend in Vieques. Following my last minute decision, an impulsive text was sent to the very handsome man stranger from the gym Friday morning:

Going to Vieques if u want

One wrap following a work out and two lunches is all we had shared. I had always noticed him and while we had spoken, our eyes never had.

The quick meals shared in the last two weeks unveiled intelligence and shared philosophies. A heart and a gentlemen. Something was still missing. Our eyes still failed to speak. Though, curious about his continued lunch invites. And intrigued with my combined attraction and indifference, hence the text.

What time
3pm
Calling you

“Well, we’d have to share a room, but there is a seat for you on the plane. I won’t take advantage of you,” I joked.

In my mind, I didn’t foresee a budding romance or a weekend of sex. I simply was inviting a man on a plane, to an island, to my bed and was more or less, indifferent. Sleep like siblings should I wish.

 

The weekend was not a catalyst for emotions of color. Highlights. Experiences. Memories. However.

 

 

img_2670

Dancing with Mr. Handsome. Physically, we are the perfect pair. Such ease and sexuality, our bodies seemed as if every inch had been explored. The truth is it was their first meeting.  A couple that you couldn’t watch without imaging them fucking. A comment from my dear gay, “What a hard on everyone had watching you two.” A weekend that brought a second truth to the fact that dancing is not a perfect indicator of the horizontal same. Decent. But my thoughts shift to Caballito with who I had two left feet. I enjoy Mr. Handsome, but emotions, there are not.

 

 

 

capturedviequenese

 

2am. Our corner spot was closed. We waited for the crowds to leave. To reenter and dance after hours with just our group. The locals walked to their mode of transportation-horses (a species higher in population than people in the amazing island of Vieques). I approached. Bored. Waiting for the doors. “Quieres montar?” One said. Thinking I was just some pretty gringa , he would lead me for a little walk.

I mounted. My legs bare. Took the reigns and one kick. In a minute, the crowds were far behind. Rhythmically gliding in the saddle. My hair flying.  His friends attempted to ride alongside me. Their faces shocked, in awe. I noted my continued amazement at the fact that languages divide, riding never does. Hugs envelop me without words or touch. Their eyes, their acceptance. Applause from the crowds. The boys following me as I turned the corner, bringing the canter to a halt.

 

Highlights. Memories. A lesson in eyes. 

 

Decisions

The sand sifts under my feet. A wind blows. A decision needs to be made. I am still at my company, barely making anything. 1/5 of what I was before. However, I would rather be working for free. Respected and appreciated for my sweat equity. My stipend affords me nothing, yet it serves to make my boss feel as if my work is paid for. I made more when I was 18.

At this moment, I am not living paycheck to paycheck. If I were, I would be tied to the paltry stipend, it would be my calories. In one month, that is where I will be. And I will be stuck, working and living day-to-day, unable to change directions and afford me any days to breathe.

Today, I have the power. I can walk away and not work for a few weeks. Line up my next venture. However, I am entangled in every negotiation and relationship, the reason I was not fired. I am the one that holds the weight. No one checks in, motivates me, or gives me guidance. I simply hold the key. I look at it and wonder why should I turn it.

I flirt with walking in and saying I am leaving. I don’t believe he could let me go. I don’t necessarily want to go. But I refuse to be here a month from now, strapped and dependent. I am not quite sure what to do . . .

The mare and the stars *

Trust. I could see nothing. Under a blanket of stars and a half cracker moon resting on the tops of the mountain, I failed to see the many trees and sleeping vacas that surrounded me. I could hear the coquis and the sounds of the twenty horses in front of me. Flickering lights from a few of the riders were the only guide.

I wanted to wait.The lone white horse, the powerful Arabian and the man on top were somewhere behind. I pulled my reigns and my horse danced circles in the darkness.

Then, stillness. The hooves in front of me were long gone. The return path unmarked. Nature. Sounds. Thousands of acres of mountains. I strained to see movement in the hill from which I descended. Nothing. I took in the land around me, a land I didn’t know. I hope he didn’t go a different way. It must have been 10pm. No phone. No sense of direction. I exhaled into the unknown.

And then I saw him. The moon highlighted his white coat and his powerful muscles. Another horse rode alongside him. The darkness hid me until they were but a few feet a way. “Ella espero.” A smile in the friend’s words as he rode on.

The Arabian neared and He asked me to wait a minute. He dismounted and approached, the Arabian followed. Trained like a model dog. Sensitive to all. His steps were of a teachers, coming to adjust something. Perhaps, my girth? But then he grabbed my hair as if it was a mane, and pulled my face towards his. His lips enveloped mine. Soft and wet. His tongue powerful. I relaxed into him. Threw away any inner dialogue. His arms wrapped around my body and pulled me off my mare, his mouth opened mine. We stood. Pressed between the two horses my body acquainted with his. I could feel him.

His hands traveled my body and I was pleased at his mass. His arms. His strength.

My mare, one to not like other horses, nuzzled his. We stood in the v of their bodies. It was a moment beyond any I have ever imagined.

The return through the darkness. How? I wondered. “The horses can see better than us,” he assured.

The Arabian and the Mare.

WIth our reigns dropped, we held hands as we traveled back.

Rewind

I simply woke up with no Valentine’s inspiration. Decided to post something old. Inspired by my trip  to New York and the old worlds I encountered. I opened old word docs. And then I saw this. It’s about M. The ex who wrote on Tuesday, “You, us and all that was is strangely persistent in my thoughts.” At the time we lived 790 miles a part. Looking back. I miss. We had the relationship I want now. 

I wrote this- Feb. 10, 2007. 

Normally when I write, the words are at my fingerprints, they effortlessly lay themselves across the page–the emotions behind them acting as their engine.

I sit here now and there isn’t much and what there is, fails to have legitimacy.

I sit here to hold back nothing and perhaps end the numbness I feel—discover exactly what it is that I feel.

I don’t imagine you coming here and our interactions playing out as they do. I don’t imagine not wanting you inside me. Yet, I also don’t crave that moment.

I do want you here and upon learning you are indeed coming, I am excited, complete. Soon after, conflict flickers inside me. This time, thinking about setting up the block association or all these things I could do to get back on the bandwagon with work, and then realizing, you are here.

I hear an echo, “shadow of a boyfriend.” Why do you hate it so much when I work? In your world, I should be able to stop everything and focus on you for a stretch of 48 hours. And I agree? That should not be that hard. But dear, the problem is there are certain things that cannot be done during the week. During the week, I am under water, so I need times like weekends to walk on shore and actually get somewhere at a decent pace.

You always tell me that I can work, but I can’t. I look at your face. I think of you sitting, just waiting, or disappointed. And I realize—my two lives or our two lives, cannot coexist.

Perhaps you think you instill a good balance? No. You make me start losing my motivation for work, which is the scariest thing for me.

Writing that sentence has now produced tears. My ears pound and I feel as if I forgot to equalize and I am at the bottom of the ocean. The emotions heighten and tears and cries that can be heard are about to be unleashed. Fortunately, the pain in my ears protects me and the emotions are quieted, unrealized.   

Perhaps I will find the emotions again, without the tears, without the pain—physical at least. . . . . .

Work is what I have. I don’t have much else. Work is my family, my heart, my best friend, my happiness, my worth. Its what I can rely on and I am so in need of it. I love it. I suppose this is why I feel an unyielding pressure to perform and am scared to shit when I know I fail to do such.

My heart hurts because I know you don’t get it. And you are perfect. You love me. Perhaps with you, I don’t need work to be my love. However, then my identity escapes me and I forget who I am.

And I am unhappy. And I am conflicted.

And I just wish we could sit and be each other’s company and do what we need to do—be it work or errands or anything. Yet nothing produces a greater stress. Last Saturday morning, I lay in frustration from so much to do and chained with the realization that you were there beside me. I wanted to get up and do what I needed to do and have you sleep. And now that’s exactly the place I find myself in . And I know this conversation is looming or possibly not, but the pain, the disappointment, the knowledge that perhaps something is gone, will be the stale air we inhale.

 

And hence, I am immobilized. Wanting to know the answer before the air consumes me and I am out of breath.

I want to go lie in bed. I am tired. Emotionally void. Yet war zone comes to mind and I feel safer here. 

Perhaps I love you. Yet I acknowledge a numbness. I suppose I am shut off. I wonder if I am done or just closed temporarily.

 

 

i was done