Here they are. The files are named not with their actual names out of laziness.
My birthday is in May. Like everyone, I have thoughts on age and time and meaning. I’ll share them with you if you’d like. Just ask.
As part of this, I am getting rid of some stuff I’ve made in the past year. This contains approximately seventeen paintings and two photosets. I am giving things away; anything left by the end of the month is going to be destroyed.
If you want a painting, you can have it. If you’d like it shipped to you, you pay shipping. If you’re local, I’ll deliver it to you by bicycle. I’ll even wear a hat. You are welcome to come pick up things.
Paintings are on canvas, unstretched and unframed. I can arrange for framing if you’d like (at cost to you.) I will retain photographs of paintings.
On photos: I have some photosets. These were done in collaboration with two local photographers. As far as I know, they have copies of the photos. If you would like a photo (or photos), you have the following options: 1) I will get them printed (at cost to you) and/or 2) I will give you a copy of the files. Any of these given away will then be deleted from my computer. Photographers may still retain copies. If you would like to see the complete photosets, drop me a line and we can meet up.
As photos of everything become available, I will post them. (Photo will be removed once a piece is claimed if the claimer requests it.) You can get a peek by browsing through the “art” tag. If you claim a piece, I will tell you about it if you’d like.
A response to love.
“I think I still love my ex-girlfriend.”
“What about me?”
“It’s just that…”
We both knew it. I’d said no too many times, and eventually you stopped asking.
“Okay,” I said. “So where does that leave us?”
“I’m going to try and get back together with her.”
I couldn’t eat for a week.
“Someday,” I said “I’m going to tell you to go away and mean it.” You wrapped your arms around my waist and put your head on my breast, your face turned inward. You got tears on my yellow linen shirt. I would button the jacket to my suit until they dried. “But I guess that’s not today.”
“I can’t do this,” I say to you over the phone. I’m too weak to do it any other way. I know you’ll cry and I can’t deal with that. “You want things I can’t give you.”
I hear your tears across the line.
You shrugged off my hand. Our friends were around, and our relationship had always been a private one so I didn’t think much of it. We went back to your room and took a nap. It was hot and the sun came in through your window to make it worse. You were sticky and I was sticky and I thought neither of us cared.
“m.,” you said. “I think we need to stop doing this.”
I swallowed hard and forgot what else you said. It took me years to forget how you smelled. Sometimes I still wake up remembering how you felt.
After months away, I was home. I lay on my bed and called you. Or you called me. I’d seen you only a few days before. The taste of you was still on my fingertips. Over our time apart, our last fight faded through first stilted and then flowing messages sent across the world. When we’d been together, everything had suddenly made sense.
“There’s something I need to say,” you said. “You can probably guess what it is. You know, J, I just can’t stop thinking about her. I know she said no, but I’m just going to keep hoping and hoping.”
That wasn’t what I was guessing.
We were drunk, again. It’s how we were together so frequently. You were telling someone a story, about something or another. I was zoned out, wondering how I’d gotten there and how I was going to get home.
“…my girlfriend…” I heard you say.
“Back in the US?” Someone asked you.
“Canada,” you said.
I looked at you. “Family business,” you said to me quietly. We’d talk about it later, you meant. We never did.
We sat on the front steps. I think it was hot. I don’t remember. I remember you wearing your beige t-shirt and those shorts I secretly thought made you look ridiculous.
“We’re making each other miserable,” you said. “I think we should stop.”
I nodded. We’d been going back and forth with that for months.
“We’ll see each other in October,” you said. I knew we wouldn’t. All of me was numb.
The next time you spoke to me, you told me you had a girlfriend and your dad was dying.
We’d barely slept since Wednesday night. We’d fought the night before. You said you didn’t want to live with me, you didn’t want to think about us having a future together. That wasn’t why we fought, it didn’t come out of our fight. It came later. After things made sense again. Then, what you said was with us and next to us. It slept between us that night.
In the morning, calm, I asked you why.
“I couldn’t deal with people saying, oh, look at him, another girl who’s–”
This was something I’d heard before. I felt cold.
I remember the streets of the distant homelands I never belonged to.
I sit on my bed, legs crossed and torso bent over them. The windows are open and sun and breeze run around my room. I look at my computer in front of me, hitting refresh on twitter and facebook and switching between IMs and IRC.
This is what a disaster looks like. This is my tragedy.
A month, and a poorly chosen angle.
Row after row on the other side of the bus is lit by milky white and pale blue of computer screens. Row after row on the other side of the bus is full of people on facebook.
My father puts a cd in the player. He hits the small orange lit button tothe large black amplifier. He sits me in the middle of the room, on the floor, and hands me a CD case. The paper inside of it is red. He hits play and something about the world changes.
We sat in your room. You kissed me by the blue light of your computer screen.
“I love you,” you said.
“That’s not possible: I don’t love you,” I said.
I don’t remember when you told me you loved me. You said it so many times, it stopped meaning anything.
“Why don’t you want me to be your boyfriend?” you asked.
“I’m going to Pittsburgh in August.”
“I could go with.”
“You have a life here.”
“But, I love you.”
We walked through Panther Hollow, hand in hand. It was dark. We’d started playing Capture the Flag at twilight, and now we could barely see in front of us. We helped each other up the creek bed. I don’t remember what we were talking about.
“I love you,” you said. It snuck out. You looked at it, desperation in your eyes, as though by somehow wishing it enough, you could take it back. You looked at me hopelessly. “I didn’t–I do, but. I…”
I choked on the words, wanting to say them back, and not knowing how.
“I love you,” you said without looking at me.
“That’s just something people say after sex,” I said without looking at you.
We sat on the porch. Painfully drunk. I knew later you’d be vomiting. I knew I would get you a glass of water and you would down it in one go. I knew you would pass out next to me and throw an arm over my torso in the middle of the night. I knew as soon as you woke up in the morning, you’d pull it back and pretend nothing had ever happened. We’d done this before.
I smoked a cigarette, knowing it would be one of my last. My mouth tasted like watermelon jolly ranchers. You took my cigarette and had a drag. You put it back in my mouth.
“You know, I–” you said.
“I know,” I said, cutting you off. You wouldn’t remember it in the morning. It would hurt too much to hear you say it.
I dared you to put the cigarette out on my arm. You did.
After three months, I knew I had to do it. I didn’t know what to say. I tried the words in my head. I knew how you felt; I knew what you would say. I stood in front of the mirror and practiced, like they tell you to do before a speech.
The entire trip I tried to find the right time, but I never did. The words, again and again, died on my lips.
Before I’d even gone to the airport, I mailed you a postcard that said it all. You were annoyed that your roommate knew before you did.
Even in confessions, we were separated by an impossible distance.
The flight made me stiff, and the air and adrenaline kept me running. We had to be quiet, and there was a lot to say. We lay on the floor, surrounded by darkness and invisible obstacles and the defining features of our relationship: the heat on your skin, your voice in my ear, your featureless silhouette in the night.
“I told him that I think I love you,” you said.
“I love you,” I said. You crushed your mouth into mine and I forgot where I ended.
Sometimes I log onto facebook and see that a userpic of some non-human image has been replaced with the beautiful face of a trans* friend who came out. Every time, it makes me smile and I frequently think “Man, I wish my skin was that nice.”