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Vertical Prose


November 2nd, 1998

redispersments @ 11:40 am

From: horsestorideon@hotmail.com
Subject: redispersments
Date: November 2, 1998 11:40:11 AM PST
To: exit2k@hotmail.com, afw10@columbia.edu, mrvisible@worldnet.att.net, sowinski@inetdirect.net, sejohnst@midway.uchicago.edu, and 24 more…

i know some of you have these already... but you have them AGAIN now.
you can give one away to your friends...alright
[he said]

1

2


alright
[he said]
one two
one two.

breathe
[he said, and took it upon himself to come up with a distraction]
one
two.

one two
[he thought, he kept it inside]

wait
[he noticed, and opened the book]
adverts
title
adverts
copy RIGHTs
dates
codes
title
authour
preface.
[he breathes.
you know the drill:
its
in
then
out
it may get tiring
it may be what we have to do
but all things can change]





wait
[he said]
one
TWO
one TWO.

i'm here again
[he knows: it gives him comfort]
my SOCKS!
[he screamed, though it never passed his lips]
i still have them on;
they're WHITE.
funny...: i never noticed.
:
there was a time
[he remembers, it's part of being human]
when i didn't care about my socks.
i wore white socks.
i didn't care about my socks.
i distinctly remember having white socks
supplied by my mother
no importance, you understand: just function.
[he breathes]
i distinctly remember black dress pants
slacks, if you will
(see, i never could... not then)
i can't remember my stomach though
[he stops; puts his hand to his mouth...
tell me if he's laughing
he might be trying to cry.
but maybe he's just waiting

oh yes.

that's it.]

wait.
one two.
one.
two.
wait.
[you could call it a sigh; he prefers 'exhale']
wait...
i'm getting to it
[another of those noises]
when i...
i can't remember my stomach.
i was younger.
i ate less.
i was thinner..
or more muscular..?
no
i was dead.
forget it.
i had this body but i wasdeadandwhocouldsee?Ididn't care.
oh shit
[he stops.. .has to think about this one.
we make mistakes... he and i... we do. see. get it? he and I?
(laughs)
we all make mistakes]
i've forgotten.

i once said... when i was younger
that life WOULD get easier...
but only as i got ...
less able to cope.
less able to deal with living...
AS my mind deteriorates due to time and drugs and air
(coke cans, television, computers; bad conversations)
life will get easier because i won't be able to think as well...
i'll have to change my perspective to compensate for that
and i'll just think things have got simpler
and they will...
i guess.

[he stops... he has to do this.]


wait
[exhale]
wait.

maybe i've got something really important to say.

ok.
let's pretend i don't leave this time, eh kid?
[no, that won't do]
no, that won't do... i already have.

where am i?
fuck...
where am i?

ok.
let's pretend...
no, that won't DO.

ok.

no.
it's not OK.

i've left.
i'd say 'i'm sorry' but i have never found that to really do any good...
like saying "i love you"
or
rather
"I love you"
[he so whittingly scoffs]
that is...
[he stammers]
it doesn't express what i need it to express...
this machine will... will not communicate...
[he took from his friend thom...;thom has only seen him twice.

probably]
no
these WORDS aren't going to do it for me
sorry DEAR.
you SAID to me that "sorry" doesn't mean anything if you say it all the time
you said
"stop saying 'sorry'"
it wasn't enough
it was never enough

maybe it was one of my earliest lies...
maybe i didn't know what "sorry" was...
i'm so sorry...
i'm so..

look, i love you
[he taught himself]
i've never said that before
[i whisper it all the time]
nothing is true anymore.
there are no more absolutes
[you fool]
i've never said ' i love you '
i've never heard " i love you "
i've never seen :i love you:
my heart is dead and gone.


[inhale]

wait.
[one two.]
one
two.

wait.
i'm sorry.
wait.
[he's so shy]
wait.
you haven't the time, have you?
i'm sorry.
i'd like to make myself worthy of your time.
i'd like to be the one you'd come to
coz you needed me

but then you did.
well YEAH, but
[sigh]
yeah,,, but.

i'm DYING here...
there's a WALL
you keep telling me about it
but don't forget i'm on the other side of it
and i'm COLD and i don't know how to get out

you keep telling me
you can see it
you can't see me.
you don't...
you can't even touch me.
i'm cold.
i'm trapped in here.
[he's also learning the lessons of desperation

he has a learning dis-ability.
he learned he could call it that

now he doesn't know what IT is.]

wait.
ok.
let's try again.
Hello. My name is Jeff. i'm not from around here, and i love you.
[he stole that too: this isn't going anywhere]
hello.
hello.
i'll go back again.
hello: i am alone here. i know i don't have to be... but you're not comming to me. Hello. i'm tired here. i'm a youthful boy but i'm scared. hello: i'm alone here and i'm calling out for you. hello: might we introduce ourselves? i don't know your name. Hello: my name isn't that well known either: i just have this shoddy one that was given to me... it makes me a killer. it makes me a dominator. hello: i still hate myself... but i don't believe i'm that person. hello: i want to get out of here. i'm still here. hello. hello. i'm trying. i'm listing: i swear. don't go. hello. i mean, HEllo. i'm here. i'm waiting for you to climb over. HELLO... i'm standing here with a dust-jacket on, hard-hat, gloves, jumpsuit, goggles. hello: where's your hammer? where's your fist? where's your heart? hello: i don't belive you, i don't trust you, i can't see you. hello. i'm cold. this isn't helping, i'm alone here. look: i'm trying; my throat's bleeding. i'm cold. HELLO
HELLO
HELLO
hELLO.
i'm tired.
i'm wishing i could do it again.
hello
i love you
and i don't even know your name

isn't that enough?
isn't that enough?
can't i stop worrying about my socks?
my voice?
they way i'd like to sleep tonight?
can't i just be quiet, bite my tongue right off?
hello
i'm sorry
i never meant a thing
i'm in the corner
i'm waiting for you
i'm crying in my sleep.

like i said: it's cold here, all the lights have gone out. remember: it's dark.. black on the inside and out. we can't get through. we're stuck. like i said: there's a wall. i've learned a lot from you and you made me want to die. i'm sorry, what an excuse. i love you. i've learned a lot from you; you make me want to die. i'd like to meet you. i'd like to touch you. i'd like to be alive.

my hands are broken.
my head is broken: there's a million places to go
who's screaming loudest?
i can't hear you...
i just want to be home.
but know i love you
and i want you
like i could want myself
i love you
and i'm waiting
til i think i'm worth enough
i love you
i need you
more than you probably know
but i can't say it
and i can't do it
i'm trapped behind this wall.

[i remember him so quiet. not like he was keeping it inside: it was practicle. see, he's gotten me into this Rhythm-thing and it fucks up the words. i've got to breathe... to say: i remember when he was younger... and he thought he was so old. or maybe that wasn't him... he can't remember anymore. i remember him, so quiet, sitting by a wall. on top or underneath: he liked those things, you know. he had his reasons... built them up strong... high enough for towers. he had his reasons: defense from all that would destroy him. he saw the world as a war he wasn't winning. or less, maybe: just a sad and tired game. there was no longer any meaning in getting around all the bases.. and the president meant nothing, like a priest or pope or wife. he thought this of things. he thought he knew it all. he thought he knew absolutely nothing... but that's where words came in and left him looking like a fool. discrepencies, you know. these things he thought: they meant a lot, they kept him asking 'why?'... like he could ever get an answer. back in the days of things he could believe, he kept his eyes opened wide. now he can't see and hardly hear... another defense, he fears. this is life: Closing down when all excuses fail. the reason is gone and the memories blurred and he can hardly function. he doesn't remember why anymore. see: i can look over at him and see him lying on the floor.. he's getting sick. it's cold in here... he's nearly naked... lying on the floor. he'll sleep like this, i know his sort.. he'll try to make it into the next day. he knows if he gets up and goes to bed he'll be stranded there... i guess he's lost control. i guess he let it go. he let me in on this great idea a million months ago. but now: look at him: our darling dying boy. his mind is shot. his hands are still. his body's giving in. he could run a million place, til his walls cave in. then it's back to the blood,sea. it's back home for that mote. he will no longer be]
the pretties girl i ever loved i met behind me in a social-sciences class when i was fifteen...
she didn't really plus me then.
she was a year younger... something like that. she was really smart and she tried really hard.. and i respected that and all
but at that age, i was more interested in finding every reason i could to hate everyone around me so i needn't be bothered thinking about what they thought.

we all have our hang-ups, you know.

i left her when i was 17.
we never got on.
i, in fact, was an adversary of her brother
when he wasn't trying to make friends with me because he was just a down-cast loser
[like
my
self]
i spent sometime away from that place
but had to return less than a year later.

my wonderful re-entry was riddled with beer and solitude.
i'd cast-off my old friends like so much lice or lovers.
i'd decided it was best to return to a space of empty abandon... as i felt that i couldn't deal at all with the world i'd been given. [more on that later]
she drove my sister to school everyday:
picked her up in the morning and brought her back in the evening, had she any time.
my sister and her sister were good friends.
they hated eachother at times
but i just took it that girls spent their time like that to keep themselves from thinking about cleaning and cookies and cocks...
you know, girls are always trying to keep from thinking about something or other.
but this girl walked down stairs where i was in my underwear and a cloud of guilt and compression...
as if the entire atmosphere i lived in was meant to crush me
like i'd spent my entire time in a pressure cooker and i was just waiting until i became tender and soft and you could pick the meat off the flesh and tell the chef
"oh dear, it MELTS in the mouth"


we went driving.
i showed her how i stole things [all the time] and how you DON't get caught.
i took her all the places she thought you couldn't go [so it seems]
i asked her what she wanted to do but would never do
and we did it.
we burned magazines in an underpass decorated by the stress and the tension of my grestest and farthest lover
we spraypainted our confusion and angst on the hoods of the beautiful christian boys who were at an away-football-game
we talked about things she didn't really think could be talked about
we didn't have to be a boy or a girl
and we weren't.

the pretties girl i ever loved was introduced to my greatest and farthest lover in a cloud of pop music, stolen wine and puncturing orafices that hadn't been dealth with.
i was the one who was cold on the floor;
they were under an afghan on the couch.
i loved them both so dearly...
so i decided she was always the one i wanted
so pretty, i thought.
we had a dinner part at my father's other house
a camp
a cabin
we fought eachother out.
i don't know, i loved her enough to give her acid and scream at her on the couch about MY world and how maybe she could see it
she sat on the floor enough to make me cry or shake or run
trying to show something i guess i never saw.

he put his hand on her foot
and she let him
and i was on my back...
staring at the ceiling in an effort to figure out why i couldn't be as simple as a boy and girl...

i left them
as is my style
for a place where i didn't think love could exist
[and manhattan was a good stomping ground too...]

phone calls and letters
[she sent them to me; i'd dial her up on her mother's 888 number]
stuff of the movies
fourteen times over
i loved her and my lover she was getting fucked by.
i came back to them
and scared them all with stuff to put in the needles she supplied
with a foriegn friend
who my lover fucked around
but never got to the point.
i left her
to follow my lover
to a town where i could dry out
and stay drunk in my misery
of seeing postcards
and letters
to him everyday
comming to our mailbox
from her
and her wishes.
i translated her beauty for him
i bit my tongue til it bled.

she still called me when he never returned them. she still wanted me
in the way a person wants another person like they'd want themselves if they had the time.
a mirror, i wanted, i was, i was.
i loved her.

the prettiest girl i ever loved
cried on my bed
with the anger we'd always known.
my friends and my lover
the prettiest girl
...
we'd all been there before
we rooted her on
we secretly smiled.

she found me in her bed in the last mid-western city
she didn't have time or the patience
as a boy so lazy as me.
a girl like that, so pretty and distant
a girl like that doesn't need love from someone who can't do anything with it but scream and run from town to town.
who needs a bouy you can't rely on?
who needs a star
you can't be sure will be there at night?




i'm learning about the prettiest things.
distance is a teacher: stand on a hill and look at your house:
watch the front door open
and the curtains pick up through the breeze...
watch the sun set
and the shadows move
you can't see that in there
you need a broken perspective
why else would you try to run back to the past
in this present state
when you know what you've lost

and you've forgotten it's LOST.

like every real friEND
theses days i say 'i never lie'
i say ' i never say good-bye'
which isn't exactly true [not that i'm aiming at that one, but...]
i can't seem to ever mean it
but it does take its toll.
when i think of everyone i've ever let enter my life
from the most annoying mother fucker who'd bore holes into my starving body
to the last person on earth i never got to come inside me
or let me get inside them...

i always leave things up to chance, when it comes down to it.
[this, ov course, is today.]

i can't imagine you not being there anymore.
and i don't believe you if you say you're staying away for good.
and it doesn't hurt for you to say those things to me
it's always much better than you not saying anything.

the first people in my life i knew i'd never lose
i thought were crazy
--- they almost always prove themselves
even if i have to do all the work.
you know, they love you. they do what they can for you
but you must remember
they're trying to do more than they can for themselves...:
it saves precious little space and time for you
[sometimes you have to find something else than that nasty duality]

if she hits your brother again
and breaks that ruler over his ass
you have to watch his face
to see the blushing and the tears
so you can remember the way he laughed when he got through the door
and closed it behind him with an extra sob
just to make the point.

you've got to try and remember all the parts you remember missing as they happened. you have to retro-fit the next life into this. you have to have it all before it happens so you can be ready in the real-time.
so my wrist says...
or said, rather.
you know they love you, lover.... they really do.
did.
whatever, they tried.

even though the bastard took to sticks in closed buildings where no one could hear you
it's not an excuse to say you hate him:
why give him such credit in taking up your mind?
he's done so many other wonderful things...
even when he cries and asks you to comfort him
it's time to be hard, just like you: kid.
she'll push you over into his lap anyway... it's the history of the trade.

you have to keep these fucked up bastards with you for the rest of your life.. and any longer that you think may be necessary.
they didn't get it right
they still aren't
they're tried filling you up and knocking you in
but you're the one they made to carry them into the story
the one you're writing to make them the heros
the ones who did it right
the ones who came out with a christmas card and a fishing rod
you have one hell of a responsibility
even if you never expect to pay it back.

well, they're there... on the bottom shelf, the one with the door
no light
masionite
it's cheap: but it's a place for them to go.
and you can't forget their mates... the ones who share their space...
claimed by all the kids you can't forgive and can't forget
they're your friends
very best friends
they'd kick you when you're down
and smile when they got you wet
yeah, turning you on like a fucking fountain
at least you can please someone, eh?
well, remember them down there
and the doors you run to find and slam behind you with a masterful turn of the little crowned button in the centre of the knob
the sound of the struggle on the other side of wood
while you look around your country wondering where to go.

still thinking about where to go when you have all these things to carry round... you don't travel lite.

you've got the modle kinds ones
who didn't get you killed at every crossing
few, yeah sure... but important because they only PREtended to make you feel like a fool because they knew they were no better than you.
these are the kids you loved, back then. the ones with the games and the toys and the grade. these are the roles you wish you could fill, though they made you as sick as the rest they didn't push you away
well, not too far to get back.

and the images in mind,
a boy in black-leather. bleached hair. ear-ring. sunglasses blocking the eyes as you stroll out of the cornfields into suburbia where you have no history in this new skin
those things like that...
like the star [in some sport] who made them all happy or proud or other words that really didn't make any sense at the time
but a goal is a goal, right?
gotta have something to aim at.

i mean, remember the kids
the ones in the river
the ones in the fields
the ones in the parks.
you'd take up the day under grasses and trees and the house-sitting.
imagine a world where you're the winner. a crime-boss: it's something to do: fuck those squares.
you never even knew you had it in you
[i guess it never came out]
until late at night
seventh grade?
what a game
fish.hook.and ____
it's something to do if both of your are moving your hands at the same speed
twelve times a night? was that the record?
videogame. new cd. sneaking out and stealing your father's cars...
gett itt off two more times before the sun cums up
we've got something to do.

next to
the maitenance man on the first job after many years of
"you smoke pot"
'sure i do'
"want some"
'sure i do'
and a back massage, maybe the only one you ever got and that huge bent thing in your mouth
it's unspeakable, that condition, but it's something work on with your friend...
which leads, of course, further into
the others: pick them out from the other school
or past kids you knew
and they knew them from church
[oh, i think that's in a box under the bed]
who read books and had nothing so bland to do [as deal with you]
but you're a persistant little fuck
your brother told you that was the only thing you ever did well
[annoy]
and you honed your skill like it was your only possesion...
what else could you do?
as you worked them into the idea of being a writer
the necessary adventures
and traumas
and scandals.
you set it up
like you have every story you've never written
about the parties
and loves
those things you lost...
broken, maybe.
you'll have to have a loss somewhere..
a good friend; a lover.
make it older.
make it the same sex.
make it dirty as hell.
make it guilty.
sufficient.
you got a 31.32.33.
you're friends knew him as 32
til a year later... you know how it goes.
he is on the middle shelf...
oh, was... you've moved him into the cubbard in the back of the room
now buried in magazines and old scribbled books.
don't forget him: he's getting married in four months
"marrieanne"
sweetsweetsweet: tie me up and put me on videotape and make me scream.
it's alright if it makes you feel better you twat.
i love you.
i'll keep you right
over
Here.
[you'r gonna break your dolls treatin'em like that]

ok.
so how many now?

i have a million in my life
and i'll never let them go.
i mean... MOST of them are gone
or going
or comming back
or something
but the majority of them aren't HERE, right...
they're off on their own little thing
but i've got a secret...
like all the secrets i've got
it's not real... so it doesn't exist.
"i'm here with a cause. i'm holding the torch -- In the Corner of your Room, can you hear me? and when you're Dancing and Laughing and Finally LIVing hearmyvoiceinyourheadandthinkofme KINDLY"

it comes around like that.
things move into place
"the knight strikes at midnight"
it's all like clockwork
when the hands have broken from the center
and the watch is on the end of a chain
attatched to a world
that can't sit still
til it finished its dinner
can't go to sleep
can't wait til dawn
can't get away
has way too many things to do
before it becomes easy enough to set the alarm and trust not to miss anything.

like walking the sidewalks and staring at the cracks of bad-luck or just killing your mother
better yet: put her in a lot of pain
so you can take her off the shelf
and dust her off
and give her the reason to make you not feel like a fool:
you got a purpose now, mr care-giver
you got SOMETHING to do.
like any crowded room
where you only notice the people in your life
and if you seem them
and they aren't there yet
you needn't worry
coz you know they will be.
any passing face. any drunken story. any days of too-much of some-thing. you can see them as you walk out the door. you can seem them in the next car over. you can see thX-Mozilla-Status: 8009hen you're sitting down
having ordered already
having forked out the cash
which is worth more than the effort it takes you to go to them again
and again
and again.
maybe someday they'll come back to you.
maybe you won't have to wish and want and feel the lack
they'll fill in your space for you
and you won't have to move your hand to be sure they're there.
you won't have to invent them anymore
and fear turning around
to give yourself the chance to lose them.

just because you say 'goodbye' does'nt mean you mean it.
and just because you never write it doesn't mean you've forgotten
and just because they never call
just because they're never there
just because you're still alone
it doesn't mean i don't miss you.
 
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