Monday, September 29, 2014

I Need You



I need you to pin me down just for one frozen moment
I need someone to pin me down so I can live in torment
I need you to really feel the twist of my back breaking
I need someone to listen to the ecstasy I'm faking
I need you, you, you
I need you, you, you
I need you to catch each breath that issues from my lips
I need someone to crack my skull, I need someone to kiss
So hold me now and make pretend that I won't ever fall
Oh, hold me down I'm gonna be your baby doll, yeah yeah
I need you, I need you
I need you, you, you
I need you, you, you
I need you
I need you to pin me down just for one frozen moment
I need someone to pin me down so I can live in torment
I need you to really feel the twist of my back breaking
I need someone to listen to the ecstasy I'm faking
Faking, I'm faking, I'm faking, yeah
You, you, you, you
I need you
I need you, you, you
Is it you I really need?
Do I, I do, I do, I do, I do
I really do
I need you

Saturday, September 27, 2014

"School" (September 2014)

It wasn't that the world was wasted on me, as I was.
I first felt superior, then shocked.
The teacher mocked that boy for wanting
to ride his horses on a school-day.

When the preacher's girl in panties skidded
past the bathroom door, we were all caught --
a bad girl took the blame.

Another bad girl once hit me in the face.
We all rushed and buried Hughie even after he'd hollered "Red!"

What could I have said?
"Things are scary out there, Mama!"?

"Alexis" (February 1982)

After the first "Fortitude" poem in March 1981 when I was 15, there was a gap of nearly a year before my angst-ridden teen self started to churn out things more regularly. Here's my ode to Joan Collins, written when I was 16 after seeing her in "Dynasty" for the first time--my first poem generated organically ("Fortitude" had been for a sophomore English class assignment):


Deep purple Alexis
Aloft as the glittering dynasty crumbles
Glowing amber eyes amused by man's folly
Yet saddened by the loss

But, as always, coveted barriers remain
For once you know the static dreams
What is there to fear?

The sleek body laughs
And moves past the ruins to forge another kingdom

Azure and slate lie fallow in the radiance
To be forgotten soon
While the ending is written for them.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Thank god that there was no Internet (and accompanying fan-fiction sites) available in 1982 for me to post this to in all my earnest initial burgeoning sexuality! Who knows, though --- the poem would have been mocked by many, maybe lauded by others. Actually, I probably would have found a "Dynasty"/Joan Collins fan-community had I been a kid online in 1982.

Everything I wrote pre-Wevill's writing class at UT in college, I felt weird and crazy for writing.

This "Alexis" poem isn't very good, but I like it because it was my very first attempt at trying to explain how aroused I was by an image, and how an image affected, or revealed, my inner self... Jung's archetype.

"Fortitude" (March 1981)

I wrote this when I was 15 years old for a sophomore English class. A year or so later, I bought a blank book to start compiling my poems in. Went back and filled this one in first. Poem 1.

Take a trip to nowhere
Now will you be free?
It seems very doubtful
They follow all, you see

Enter your mind's time warp
Do you think you are secure?
Do not depend much on it
The safety is the lure

A trance cannot gain anything
A revolution will
How else are we to win our peace
Than to rape and loot and kill?

Yes, our rebellion was successful
But still they are not free
For now, in their hypnosis
It is from us that they must flee.

Friday, September 26, 2014

Loyalty

Now that I've been in middle age for the past 3 or so years, I'm pretty sure that my loyalty in the years left to me must be to my body.

In the past? I was primarily all a-flutter about whatever my flighty Head told me, with my figurative Heart chiming in occasionally. As in (head), "This person is so creative and original, so different! I LOVE her!" and (heart, overriding head) "Well, this person is absolutely shitty to ME personally, but look... She once collected money for a friend's abortion! She once comforted a gay boy whose high school friends and parents were being unappreciative of his soul! She once cried upon learning that her sister's GoodWill coworkers were mean to her! What a great person! I LOVE her!"

When I say loyalty to my body, I mean it literally. An example: My very first lover back in '87 gave me a sexually transmitted disease. And then DENIED that she had given it to me! I'd never had sex before, and she'd had sex with probably 300 people; but she would never admit that she had given me the STD. We were together for over 2 years, and I brought it up maybe twice during that time... she would never admit it. Hey, as a virgin, I had a RIGHT to be pissed off about getting an STD on my first outing! Jesus. The vast majority of newbies get SOME sort of "fun trial period," don't they?? And, more importantly, the fact that even after we became more intimate over time, she never admitted that I now had an STD solely because of her. (If both parties had been sexually active for years, there's of course a gray area... In our case, though... Nah.)

That hard-core STD fact, and her psychological game-playing, probably kept me with her much longer than necessary -- "Who will want me now?" and all that. My head and my heart initially liking her, being fascinated, wanting to discover more, but my BODY, the realist, being utterly repulsed.

Being true to my body also involves paying attention to its responses. Who floods it with feel-good endorphins? Who makes it tense up? The girl I was in love with my senior year of high school, for instance... One Sunday, I was in my bedroom wracked with cramps to the point of throwing up from the pain. Ginny showed up at my house unexpectedly --- when she walked into my room, what I now know were endorphins kicked in; the pain immediately disappeared.

Conversely, with my first lover Mollie, the STD expert, I was almost immediately, constantly paranoid. Same paranoia with Sandra, much later, 2008, via the Internet and then once we met in person. With the one male lover that I've had, in the 1990s, there was no paranoia at all. He was married, which created a barrier that made me MENTALLY angry, but there wasn't any sort of "neurological" repulsion that made me immediately tense up around him.

Gotta start paying attention to that sort of pure bodily reaction. The inexplicable. The key to an innate sort of physical/chemical happiness that leads to longer-term emotional/mental ties. Going purely mentally on and on and on with those who simply don't make me feel good has been ridiculous.

Nice

A couple of months after I started working at my new job, the lady at the front desk stopped me one day as I strode in the front door and mentioned how she liked how I walked--like I was really going somewhere. At that time, she told me a back-story about what made her think of my walk, but I was a bit flustered at the compliment and now self-conscious about how I'd been walking and couldn't really remember the story later!

This week, at the end of one day as we passed each other heading out, she stopped me and said, "I have something for you at the desk when you have the chance to come down." I nodded and smiled, thinking that it was probably a company shirt or something.

When I went a couple of days later to see what she had for me, she handed me this: "Remember when I told you about the calendar page I saw in my friend's office that made me think of your walk?"

 
Embarrassingly, I HADN'T remembered the gist of the story she had told me (I didn't tell her that). But now I was amazed that this relaxed, flower/kitty-accompanied lady on a calendar saying with determination, "The question isn't who is going to let me: It's who is going to stop me?" reminded this woman of me! :)  What a nice thing for her to both think of and share with me! :) In recent years, some people have given me negative "feedback" making me think of myself as awkward and harsh... but here's someone with a different read on my "aura." Someone recognizing my good qualities is a wondrous thing.


Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Coincidence?

Is it a coincidence that when Sandra entered my life in October 2008 while I was in NYC, my luck started to go bad? And when she left my life a couple of months ago, things started to look up again? It is utterly simplistic and archaic to say such a thing, but I'm also prone to pay attention to patterns. I hardly cried at all during my first year-and-a-half in New York City, alone as I was, and under the stress that I was under. From late 2008 on, I cried constantly.

Sunday, September 21, 2014

The Art of Dying



There'll come a time when all of us must leave here
Then nothing Sister Mary can do
Will keep me here with you
As nothing in this life that I've been trying
Could equal or surpass the art of dying
Do you believe me?

There'll come a time when all your hopes are fading
When things that seemed so very plain
Become an awful pain
Searching for the truth among the lying
And answered when you've learned the art of dying

But you're still with me
But if you want it
Then you must find it
But when you have it
There'll be no need for it

There'll come a time when most of us return here
Brought back by our desire to be
A perfect entity
Living through a million years of crying
Until you've realized the art of dying
Do you believe me?

Saturday, September 20, 2014

Whatever happened to...

 
 A "Baby Jane" screen shot with an expression that reminds me of Joan in her younger days. (I am only a 2nd-generation Joan fan, from 1987 on... knowing her only through video/photos. The live screenings of Joan films I've seen in the years since '87, I've only witnessed via a post-Joan sensibility---with a gay camp crowd or a "respectful classic-film-viewing" audience... i.e., not an actual Joan Crawford audience... I suppose that watching all of her stuff later on gets you close to what the actual audience of the day experienced or felt about her... but anything so condensed can only approximate what Joan Crawford meant to people in real time... In the case of this photo --- as soon as I saw it, it reminded me of Joan's kid smile, her smile in so many '30s publicity photos. And then it reminded me of what it must have been like to have first seen Joan onscreen in the late '20s/'30s and to have actually GROWN UP WITH her, Joan aging along with her viewers... While some (much?) of the audience for 1962's "Baby Jane" was in the theater just for something to do on a Friday night because of that month's media hype of the "aging divas in a shocker," I'm sure that there were also many attending out of true fondness for Joan who recognized this look on her face from all of the preceding 30 years--an old friend, a touchstone throughout their lives. Whatever happened to Joan Crawford is, perhaps, a magnified example of whatever happened to us all, of what we want to be both remembered and forgiven for.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Progress

Marching slowly toward normalcy. (Well, if "normalcy" means being wanted and appreciated, that is! For me, that's been an ABNORMAL state for years!)

Work: Today, the only other editor gave his two weeks' notice. Making me the SENIOR EDITOR after only 6 months! Kind of scary, because we've been super-busy almost constantly the whole time I've been here, but exciting, too. All eyes will be on me to see how I can handle the new load, and... I know for a fact that I CAN handle it. I'm a really good editor and writer; I'm also fast and efficient and organized. I look forward to the challenge. My boss says she's going to hire a temp editor to help me out; I also look forward to training this person. Though I've been at this job only 6 months, I have a good feel for it and know what needs to be emphasized. (Unlike when I started, when my co-editor, who had been there for 2 years, kind of left me to my own devices. I'm a big believer in house style, for instance, as was the long-time editor before the one who's quitting now--the latter, though, was pretty laissez-faire about that!) Another thing: The guy who's leaving has an office with a coveted WINDOW! I WANT IT! :)

My boss said laughingly this afternoon, "You better not go anywhere!" No way! :)


"And I looked at this face with the sun in the west..."

In honor of Greta Garbo's September 18 birthday, here's Joan Crawford on her Garbo crush. Recorded April 1973 at NYC's Town Hall. Crawford's Garbo story starts at 5:34. (I used to put this clip on many a mix tape...)