Monday, March 19, 2012

Annalena's Response to Einstein's Dreams


“You’re insufferable.” It was sweet the way he said it with his eyes diverted. Although I was livid, it never would have occurred to me to direct it at him. Instead I shook my fist at the clock that keeps me spiraling into forced niceties and aggressive driving. I cursed the whole planet for it’s insistence on circling the sun, driving me maddeningly forward without a chance to catch my breath. I’ve become greedy in my oxygen consumption and have a horrible tendency to suck all the air out of a room. Inadvertently, I suffocate everything I get close to. I can’t get myself to apologize to him though. It’s not my fault that I have been spun into this web of calendar appointments, it’s just the way I’ve been taught to live. Work hard. Work harder. Get somewhere. Be sure to make change and money at the same time.  After all, we live in America. The land of the free. There is salt on my lips and I realize I’ve started to cry. I look up at him and see he is terrified. Never in our two years have I cried. In fact I thought I had forgotten how by this time.
            Rewind to a scene in childhood. I have fallen of my bike and badly skinned my knee. Mother approaches slowly with her seventh margarita of the afternoon in hand. She gazes at me through heavy eyes that are not warm, but they are familiar and I am glad to have her here with me. “Stop crying.”
            And so I have. Now I turn to meet his eyes, but my neck has frozen into a cinder block so I just stare at my palms and tell him he can leave. He doesn’t even bother to collect his things, he just bolts. For a moment I consider feigning sick and wiping clear today’s many lists of to-dos. I could watch a movie, or hell, maybe even some television. I could eat chocolate and drink wine right out the bottle, after all there is no other living thing with whom I need to share the air with in this apartment. There is not even a potted plant to speak of, growing silently on a window sill.
            I entertain these ideas as I go to the mirror to fix my make up which has gotten a bit smudged. I think about how nice it would be as I strip off his favorite dress and put on a fitted navy skirt suit. I have blisters on my feet, but the heals are slipped on anyway. I dismiss my fleeting desire to wallow in my irreversible humanness, as my feet carry me back out into the throngs of people that all want something out of life. I wont admit to feeling alone in their midst. I wont admit to feeling lonely ever. At my core there burns ambition, on my surface there is performance. The two push back at each other, and I am left with an icy feeling just under the skin.    

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