I used to write in riddles, and I used to write in rhymes; my body ached to write the words, the prose is what kept me alive. I write into the dark veil of the night, and in another set of chances, I’d take the ones I’ve missed. All the times in which I spoke into the silence, and whenever I do it seems I don’t speak, except to cry out and wait for an answer. I came into this world alone, marked in constellation, and when all else is gone, I will still be here. There’s a ceiling in the darkness, I am but a lifeless face that you’ll soon forget.
There’s a monster living under my bed who whispers words like thunderbolts of lightning, whenever the west wind moves. If I’m still breathing, then I suppose that I’m the lucky one, even though I breathe through corrupted lungs. Setting fire to my insides and watching myself burn like midnight machines, until I catch daylight, and in the brilliant light of morning, it feels good to be alive.
Now unburdened and becoming the person I was supposed to be, I still don’t know what forgiveness is. If dreams were thunder and lightning was desire, I’d still live my life with reckless abandon like a displaced cosmonaut. I became accustomed to living life as if always reaching for the light. The rest is in the details, like an image often seen on television, where all I need to know is that things are going to look up. Somewhere along the line, I must have slipped off track, like tattoos and memories pinned down in a photograph album.
These are the tears, and the dreams I’ll dream instead. I know I could have loved you, but you would not let me. I wrap my fears around me like a blanket with a shyness that is criminally vulgar. This is a new beginning, traveling unfamiliar rivers and roads; it fells like boarding a downtown train that takes me to new and unfamiliar places where a writer can live a thousand lives. These voices in my head get loud, and my wish was granted for someone who would save me from the nothing I’d become.
You said you wanted everything, then you took everything from me, pointing angry fingers at me, burdening me with the weight of feeling like I could never give you enough. Now, you disappeared, and I now feel a different kind of weight, the burden of becoming someone brand new. The loveless fascination with all those yesterdays, it is the slaughter of the meek, the godlike technique, and the ever present feelings of the heart.
I remember years ago when you told me not to go into the children’s home, but I went ahead, if to do nothing more than to defy you. For that moment, I was clothed only in obscenities, rain soaked in the summer heat, and I could find no comfort in this world. You told me many lies, and I missed miles and miles of roads I should have seen, even though the truth was plain to see. It was my underlying condition that made you so angry, the fault in my genetics, for which I could do nothing about. These are the ramblings of a lunatic, getting so much attention, and the carnage of covering you up with affection. There were wolves in the house, and while I was hoping for the best, I was anticipating and expecting the worst. As I wandered through my playing cards, to you I became the joke. I lost myself; it was the broken parts that I needed to see. How did this fall apart? I waited for your call, while you stole my glory and tried to prevent my escape. I know the truth now, like echoes of angels that won’t return; is this the prize that I’ve waited for?
When was the last time that you felt good? Why was it that you only wished for the things that you didn’t need? The long awaited answer, the thoughts from the big chair, I was the unsuspecting victim whose soul crumbled like a pastry under softly spoken lies, when you gave my mind a new disease. Behind the scenes, I started threading the needle, a photograph on the dashboard of forgotten dreams, and when I was ready to run away, I drove off in my car. Should I write it in a letter and give you the secrets you request? Don’t offer questions, as I will retreat with my suitcase of memories, off to become the girl I needed to be since so long ago that I can no longer remember when, now trying to make up for lost time. You tried to tear my world apart with mindless filler, your esoteric words disguised as reverie. A means to an end.
I was a mere shadow of a man you selfishly wanted me to be, a man who never was, a man I never will be. When you tried to take me I was not there. In the end, it’s the heart that matters more, and I am unable and unwilling to censor my tears. The things I wish I could have told you, a cautionary tale of how things are rarely as they could be, or should be. Times have changed, and so have you, and it’s fucking depressing that in unrequited love, my love is vengeance that is never free. How much of this can I put up with? The resentment, ghosts of empty promises where something’s always wrong, and it’s always my fault.
These are the words I’ve never said, a page in a book that you’ve never read, and now that I’ve moved on, these are the dreams I’ll have instead.
This piece was inspired by my breakup with Angie. A little over a year after our breakup and my move from New York to Vermont, her mother asked me to write Angie a letter explaining why I left her. The letter I sent to Angie detailed my reasons, citing a toxic dead-end relationship, and her blatant dismissal and disregard for my medical needs relating to being born intersex and have everyone assume that I’m simply transgender.
The header image is titled It’s All In Your Mind.