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12/01 Direct Link
You have to live with the disappointments; you have to take them in stride. His problem is that he lets his disappointments trip him up. He's strolling along, happy as can be when out pops a disappointment and bam! There his is rolling on the ground, clutching an ankle in agony. And by the time he stumbles back to his feet, the race has already gone on without him. He says "You should learn wisdom from your own words you toss at me."

And he's right. I've got to keep on running when the disappointments tangle up my own feet.

12/02 Direct Link
Winter, bitter cold, stealing into my soul, freezing my heart at the same time it solidifies running water. I bite down hard, teeth piercing skin, pain piercing the fog in my brain. Blood wells up, scarlet against the pale pinkness of my lips. My tongue probes the cut, tasting salt, tasting copper and I'm left remembering a time when all wasn't bitterness and frost. I used to know what it meant to be alive. Then I invited winter into my life and found I had no more substance than a brittle icicle desperately clinging to the underside of a car.
12/03 Direct Link
He found the trammel to catch my heart, and it surprised everyone that it wasn't words. Not that his words weren't seductive though… they ran chaotically through my head often enough. Nope, not words, but a look that tripped me up and snared me good. Eyes, big and brown, and sad. It was the sorrow, the sadness, the gloom and despondency pierced briefly now and again by a flash of hope then back to sorrow, that did me in. And I thought, "Here's someone even I can make laugh. Make smile."

But those who court melancholy rarely choose to smile.

12/04 Direct Link
You've got to be in the focus. You've got to be seen and heard. It's supposed to be the only way to get ahead in this world, to make something of yourself. But what if you don't want to be in the focus? What if you want to remain anonymous? There's something to be said about anonymity. About hanging out on the edges of the scene. You're more real there. In the focus, you're all Hollywood glitz and glamour, trying to be what society says you should be. But me? I think I'll stay where the lines are still blurry.
12/05 Direct Link
"Well, it's obvious to me what she has to do." I made my way across the room, mindful of the hot liquid in the cup I carried.

"She has to replace the dead-men in the wall." Marc opened the door for me and I nodded my thanks to him.

"Exactly! The dead-men are decaying at a faster rate because they're underground, and it's causing the fence to sink." I waited for Marc.

"But can she replace the dead-men without destroying the fence?" Neither one of us noticed the look of horror on the person's face who walked directly behind us.

12/06 Direct Link
Observation games. Me watching you watching me watching you… this could go on forever, you know… And I know I shouldn't look, my eyes are supposed to be reserved for someone else, yet continuously am I drawn back to you, seeking you out from the crowd… And maybe this fascination would have faded, drifted away as easily as it appeared, but that I caught you looking back… caught that wistful twist in your smile… a look that twisted me up inside.

You watching me watching you watching me… will it remain just a game or move on to something else?

12/07 Direct Link
"You really are an amazing person." She shook her head. "Sometimes I get to thinking about how amazing you are and I just can't grasp the whole concept of it. It leaves me fluttery… and a little frightened."

"And?" With one finger under her chin, he tilted her head back to look into her eyes.

"Oh my god, you scare me. I can't explain that either, but you do. What are you?" Her tears surprised him and he pulled her into his arms. One of them trembled violently.

"I can be whatever you need me to be." He whispered hoarsely.

12/08 Direct Link
The tree threw a long black shadow across the snow. The little house sparrow resting on a thin branch threw a shadow too. I climbed that tree, shaking the powdery snow from its branches as I scuttled upwards. Out on a limb, I sat with my legs all dangling down-oh. Looking to the ground I noticed I did not cast a shadow, and this baffled me. The sparrow, noting my confusion, perched on the same branch as me and cocked his head towards the ground.

"You've got to have a soul to cast a shadow." He said before flying off.

12/09 Direct Link
I don't know why I sometimes go empty. It doesn't happen often, but when it does, it is a complete shutdown of all emotions, and I am left colder than Denali in winter. Maybe it has to happen because all of the rest of the time, I'm on an emotional overload. Some will say I am crueler in my passion. That, when roused, my anger is a nasty monster to tangle with. But these people have probably not had to deal with sly calculations by someone heartless. Do I think I'm evil? No, but sometimes I do cross that line.
12/10 Direct Link
Hide in plain sight. He knew she was wise to suggest this, but still, he abhorred wearing the wings. Just the thought of them made the scars on his back itch. He turned around as the bathroom door opened.

"Are you ready… oh… oh my…" She paused in the doorway taking him in. Black was definitely his color, and those leather pants showed off certain advantages… and… shaking her head, she took a step towards him. "They are going to love you at The Dungeon."

"I can hardly wait." With another resentful tug on his wings, he followed her outside.

12/11 Direct Link
He wants to put my words to music. He thinks they would make a good song.

"But those words are twisted and dark." I protest, but my heart beats fast at the thought. I don't believe in love at first sight, but I now know what it's like to love a complete stranger. He wants my words.

Should I risk it? Should I give him the okay? The worse that could happen is he could steal my words, say they are his own and a whole other country would never know the difference.

But they would still be my words.

12/12 Direct Link
"Immortal? Me?" Her laugh slipped across the creek, startling two ducks to wing. "Well, I suppose to you, I appear immortal, but no. The spirit is strong, but the flesh still decays like all flesh is meant to."

She took his hand in hers and lightly traced his palm.

"Now, Death, he's immortal. Out of all of the deities, he's the only one I know who is. The problem with godhood is too often, your name is forgotten, and that itself is a kind of death. You look cold, should we go inside? Now, the strange thing about Death is…"

12/13 Direct Link
She's his marionette, his puppet on a string, coming alive to dance only when he's around. But men never grow far beyond their childhood and his interest is only held for a little while and so she folds back into herself.

"What if these strings got tangled and I was unable to perform for him?" She mused from her jumbled heap. "Would he miss me? Come to untangle me? Or would he leave me to rot while he sought out a new dancer, maybe one who ran on batteries, no strings attached."

She dreams of scissors to cut those strings.

12/14 Direct Link
"Help me. Set me freeeeeee…" The voice, though tiny, was very deep. And it took her five minutes just to figure out it came from the moldy casserole on the counter.

"Oh no. No. I am not going crazy. This is not going to happen." She grabbed the casserole dish, and wrestled her balcony door open. Then, with one heave, the casserole dish, lid and all went sailing off into the woods.

"Everything is normal." She reassured herself.

But the next time she took a walk in the woods, a tiny but very deep voice whispered Thank you… to her.

12/15 Direct Link
When you're in the shower, and the whole room is steamy, and your entire body is soapy, sudsy, do you reach down and wrap your hand around yourself? Do you close your eyes, bite your lip and feel yourself harden as you think of me? And does your whole body tremble and shake as you find your release?

Don't deny it. You know you do. That oh so guilty look on your face told me so when our eyes met and you quickly looked away.

It makes me want to laugh to think someone could find a release with me.

12/16 Direct Link
She was the type of person who liked to entertain others, to give them something to talk about with their family and friends. This is why she color-coded her groceries every week. This week it was purple, and in her cart she had placed grapes, Welch's Grape juice, grape jelly, these tortilla chips that were supposed to be black, but in actuality, were a dark purple, and eggplant.

"I don't even like eggplant!" She mumbled to herself as she picked out a purple shampoo bottle. "Next week, I think I'll choose brown. At least then I can buy some bread!"

12/17 Direct Link
"You know they're not always right. Sometimes it's okay to count your chickens before they hatch." He ran a finger lightly over her collarbone.

"What do you mean?" She asked, closing her eyes and letting her head fall back onto the pillow.

"The first time I saw you, I knew I could make you mine. Without a doubt." He traced lower, smiling at the way her breathing was becoming more rapid.

"The very first time… hmmm?"

"And something else they're wrong about, watched pots will boil. Rather nicely, in fact." He kissed her neck, moving his hand even lower.

"Mmmmm…"

12/18 Direct Link
I wasn't joking when I said I was never meant to be part of a whole. I can fool myself for short periods of time, but then comes that sinking feeling whispering in my head you don't belong, this not what you are.

He said, "You don't belong because you won't let yourself belong. They hold out welcoming arms, but you duck your head and evade their smiles. You could be the perfect part of a whole if only you would try."

But instead, I stand back and watch yet another circle close without me.

I am what I am.

12/19 Direct Link
Dirt-cheap, that's what they got her for so that's what they called her. Always looking and smelling like a gutter-rat, DC dreamt of better things. Different places. And kinder people. A hard slap often brought her back to reality.

"DC, get them damned clouds our of yer head and finish washin' up them dishes, ya lazy good for nothing git." If she weren't careful, a kick would follow the slap. She never cried over these things, crying only got you locked in the dark closet with all the spiders for the day.

Isn't it a shame these things really happen?

12/20 Direct Link
Where are you my little jester? Once you thought it was so grand to make me smile. You said the sound of my laughter made you heady with happiness and dizzy with delight. But where have you gone my dancing, tumbling fool? You once said I was like a drug, that the more you had of me, the more you needed of me to live.

Did I ever, in turn, think to make you laugh? No, not me. I was a selfish creature allowing your existence for the sake of my pleasure. And now I've lost you. Serves me right.

12/21 Direct Link
So you starve yourself, freeze yourself, sleep on beds of nails, walk on burning coals. All to gain enlightenment. Is the peace you gather after receiving this enlightenment really worth the angst of getting there?

You see, I would think enlightenment would be a scary thing to have. I think there is good reason for the shadowy places in my heart and mind. I agree, complete darkness is bad. But equally harmful is pure white light.

So keep your coals, your beds of nails, while I elude enlightenment for yet another day. Which one of us will be more content?

12/22 Direct Link
He cried. In the eight years I have known him, it was the first time I ever saw him do this. And it broke my heart. But I always knew that it would. His tears brought on my tears and we stumbled away from the coffin clinging desperately to one another. Five minutes later, he pulled himself together; the redness of his eyes the only thing to betray shed tears.

"Don't you ever cry again!" I told him, tear stains still marking my face. "It tears my heart in two to see you so sad."

And he smiled for me.

12/23 Direct Link
It's not that she's not playing with a full deck, not at all. In fact, she's playing with a deck that has a few too many cards thrown in. Which would be great if they were all aces, but they aren't. She thinks too much. She worries too much. Does a little bit of everything too much because she's sure it's better to be over than to be under. To her, moderation is a fantasy, a fairy tale, and she's one who never believed in princes anyhow. But here's her problem now: she's run out of space to put everything.
12/24 Direct Link
When we were little, on Christmas Eve my father would take us out to look at Christmas lights. My brothers and my sister and I would compete on whose side of the street had the best lights. At some point my father would stop at a convenient store and treat us to hot chocolate.

I found out later this was one of his presents to my mother, who stayed home and had a long hot bath and a glass of wine (or two) to recover from a day of four over-excited, rambunctious kids. I think it was a good present.

12/25 Direct Link
Broken winged bird spreads his wings and dreams of flying. One wing flaps strong and steady, but the other wing, the mangled wing, barely stirs up a breeze. The setting sun turns the water to gold and the bird is left there, a dark silhouette, as all the other birds fly off.

Five minutes pass and he spreads his wings, his feathers blue in the fading light, to once again attempt flight.

He'll never fly, not with a wing so torn and battered. But maybe his determination will inspire others to fly. To dream even when the situation is hopeless.

12/26 Direct Link
You play a good part, masking your emotions with a grin, a laugh, a funny face… But I think I should tell you your eyes are revealing more than your easy flowing words ever meant to. Just one quick flash of your eyes revealed enough intensity to nearly bring me to my knees. Just one accidental glimpse into your eyes, and your secret little world and I'm left scrambling to repair my own defenses. So much damage with just one glance.

But I'll keep your secret. If you looked at me like that openly, I don't think I would survive.

12/27 Direct Link
"I want you out of my life completely. Don't occasionally call me. Don't send me a card at Christmas time. Get gone and stay gone." She stared at him without blinking.

"You hate me that much?" He asked.

"No… I love you that much." She tried to smile, but didn't quite make it. "You amaze me, fascinate me. And now that you're leaving my life, I don't ever want to hear that you died. You deserve to live forever, even if it's just in my mind."

"I don't know what to say."

"Then say goodbye and leave it at that."

12/28 Direct Link
Weak tea. That's what my writing's been like lately. Thrown together in haste, teabag not steeped long enough, too much cream and sugar dumped in. Sure, it can warm you, quench your thirst, but it doesn't give you the full flavor of what it really is.

Of course some people like their tea weak. The predictable blandness comforts them, makes them feel safe. But my writing's not supposed to be that way. My words have nothing to do with safety, with predictability. It's a bitter black tea, cut only with boiling water. With no stupid, stale teacakes to accompany it.

12/29 Direct Link
I need to batten down my hatches. I need to paint my mirrors black because that's what I heard you do when a house is in mourning. I need to reinforce my battlements; I've heard we're in for a long siege. And no one is sending any backup, so it's a siege I'll withstand alone. Shhh! Listen. I can hear a cold wind singing a haunting song at my windowsill. I do not want to let that ghost in. And I hear an echo of a laugh, the wind already knows the ghost is inside. That the ghost is me.
12/30 Direct Link
So this man, a complete stranger, e-mails me and asks "Do you like beatings?" I've been mulling over how I would respond, if I were going to respond. My favorites so far:

"Only by midgets wearing black leather underwear and red feather boas."

"I used to like beating my meat back when I had a penis..."

"I gave them up for Lent last year."

"That depends, would you like a nice prickly cactus shoved up your ass?" er… but he might, so scratch that one.

Words are funny. If he had said spankings, I wouldn't have been nearly as appalled.

12/31 Direct Link
Break it down. Take it apart. Strew the pieces all about. Look at them closely. Try to figure them out. What's in a year, that this one should end so suddenly? Or maybe I'm not thinking about the changing of the year anyhow. Maybe I'm thinking about relationships. About you. About me. And all the distances in between.

This I do know. Once you've broken it down and taken it apart, you can put it back together again, but it will never be the same.

Anything you say kid, that's okay kid, you're going to make it on your own.