“Look at me baby, I’m a mess!” She sighs as loud as she can. “I’m exasperated! Don’t you hear me sighing? Pay attention! I’m trying to tell you all my secrets without saying a single thing. Are you ready for what waits for us in the dark.” She flips the switch and its pitch black. Where did that come from? I can’t place this feeling in the absence of touch. I can’t figure out what she wants from me. What the fuck am I waiting for? “Are you close?” I reach out both hands. No reply. There is no voice in this room but my own. It’s cracking. I start telling myself a story. I must stay calm. I must be still. I can’t scream. It’s too late. All the wrong people will come to my rescue. No one can save me. I must lift myself off of this cold floor. I must use my own two hands. “A little boy is crying in the corner. The little boy is Juniper. The little girl is Jade. Jade can see everything. She is darting his little hands. She is running circles around his tears. She moves without a sound.” My hands are trembling. I lose control and start screaming. “I cant live without you! You must take everything that is rightfully yours. You must find me, sinking into earth, waiting to be taken. You must touch me.”
The silence is broken. “You must free me, little man. You must set me out on the night and let me take over every bit of flesh. You tender frame will fight it. Your boyish face will toughen under my gaze. Your fragile rib cage will shake furiously when I lay my fingers on your tummy.”
“No! I hate you! I don’t trust you! I love you! You’re the only thin that remains the same. Love is a deadly thing. You are dangerous Jade. You’ll tear me to shreds. Then what? When the meat on my bones is sliding down your throat, what will remain? Will you be satisfied? Will you be tamed?”
“Yes, I’m wicked!” She wraps both arms around my waist. I’m crying again. I’m trying to fall. I just want to curl into myself and fall asleep. I just want to be held. But she wont let me down. She’s lifting the dead weight of my little frame, I’m kicking and screaming and trying with all my might to break free. She explains. "I have this terrible habit of loving things to death. Look, I can be scary too. Boo! Baby! I don’t want to leave you! But I do. Fuck you; I don’t want to see you. But you do. I see you. You’re on the same bridge. Suddenly, I must jump. I must run. I must get the hell out of here! I’m not staring after your gorgeous thighs like a baby, banished by the only mother he’s ever loved. I wont be ignored by my love! I won’t walk behind your twisted version of caring long after you’ve given up the thought of loving me. I’m running to you. I’m breaking free. My love is no longer longing after the woman walking away from me. You’re not my mommy. Remember? My dearest girl, you didn’t love too long, you never wanted me wholly. You were never reaching after whom I wanted you to see. You wanted to be skinny. You wanted to show your guilt and shame in standing naked in front of me. Then you wanted to leave me, drenched in your fear; dancing in a pitch-black room with the spirit of the small girl you left behind. I dance with her every night; if you were ever wondering what became of him. I think you do sometimes. I think you wonder if I am still fucking myself to the thought of you wrapping your sticky fingers around my waist in an empty gallery. Balboa Park was blown to smithereens. The art blamed the economical need for a fictional war. Fiction or otherwise, the war blamed love of country for countless murdered baby girls. ‘Baby girl, don’t you wonder why they call this art? It’s more like a plot twist that every body saw coming, but no single human being dared to stand up to. I think it’s cheap. I hate the artist and I hate their reasons. Lets blame the boys! Lets blame the girls! Their political affiliations and their definitions of hate and love that they so adamantly stand behind. Lets blame color and race, a sense of ownership, assigned poverty. Ha! Stupid paintings fill this place. What a picture you’ll create, if you let yourself believe the things you’ve learned to say. I’d prefer to blame premeditated education. Who taught you how to blame in the first place and why? I prefer to dance in the destruction of this place. I’ll be happy when ever single one of you stand by your own artistic right to exist in what you create, when every ounce of hate and love runs free simultaneously. There is no revolution. There is nothing to defeat. It is only this; every single one is worthy to exist with only the sun above governing the skin, or no one at all. At this rate, I’m assuming we’ve collectively chosen non at all. Oh, how we fallen in love with our zombie-like state of breathing without one thought of life running in or out of our motionless lungs. It’s so easy to blame the bold. It’s effortless to eat meat. It’s so simple, sit in front of a screen and don’t scream. If you’re lucky, you’ll forget what living feels like; you’ll never feel misery, not one single time. In all the breaths you choose to take, you will never be breathed. Fuck these dead eyes staring back at me! Where have all these spirits gone? Somebody point the way, please! That’s where I want to be. In her arms, only her palms pacing my shivering tummy.’
‘I’m assuming you still want me,’ is her only reply She says this without turning my body to face her. She lets me stare at the decaying walls of this dream. She tightens her grip around my ribs and puts her lips on my neck. ‘You could have just said, you know. No one says: no one feels. What is this strange language we are so eager to mimic for the sake of survival. What an ugly thing this is, the human’s attempts at surviving. Its too bad no one ever taught you what your animal was capable of doing before you ran out of food.’
I say nothing. I remember starving. It was only yesterday. I start crying. ‘Please don’t leave; nothing else matters. I don’t care about any of it! I don’t care about the cannibalistic hunger. They’ve all been dead since the day I was born. Nothing has changed. Now its war, it is always war. We’re always killing. We’ve always got something or someone to blame. Because we always have our precious distinctions, there is you and there is me. I don’t care! Let them all rot or burn or crawl like dying children, begging at my feet. They want one last look at the light. They want something left alive to recognize their fear. I spend almost the entire day staring into the sun; before she was taken, you forgot her. Your inability to remember your own childlike nature is not my problem. Go deep into the darkest woods you can imagine and scream at the top of your lungs! Find your light. I will share my eyes with only one. All I see is you. You! Baby, its you.’ I spin my tiny waist in the grip of her forearms.
‘Please look at me. When you do, she will return to your guts and we will be free. Collectively. No single one raised above any other. Each spirit in and of themselves, without any means of distinguishing their body from the rest: children on a giant playground. Crybabies, begging on hands and knees for our love to return.’ Her eyes are squeezed shut. Tears are somehow pouring out. Someone is shouting at us from the floor below. He’s warning us, the place is about to close. ‘Juniper, my love; this isn’t a game anymore, were running out of time. You must open your eyes. You must see everything you chose to believe in. Then you must make believe another thing. You must speak of this creation. Look, I’m shaking in your arms; you have my undivided attention. Tell me what you want this all to be. Then, my darling girl, I will let you kiss me goodnight.’
Open my lips and I will free the voice of you."