Monday, May 08, 2006

what happens when i find things in random places.

i updated forgetting gravity (because the story changed.) it's still under the same post, except it's called forgetting gravity (revised.)...i believe that is around the beginning of march, if you really want to re-read it. i added 3ish pages, edited a lot. hopefully it's better. i dunno.

now here's another piece. aha! much shorter, much more abstract. really very random. apologies.

the way jellyfish slide along glass, and also the reason raleigh talks too much.

i like it when it rains through the windows and everything becomes slightly ravaged by the water, she tells him while riding the bus from Darcy Point to downtown Seattle. She's just met him [just meaning three hours earlier when she'd run to catch the shuttle as the doors were closing on her ankle and he had been the only one with an empty seat. his name was jonas, which did not fit him. his nose was too large for a man named jonas. possibly nelson, or raymond, although neither of those really fit him either. definitely not jonas, though. she does not tell him this.] my favorite kind of paper is always notebook paper, you know, college blue ruled with red margins that feel like boundaries on some sort of strangely radioactive map, like as if the map only shows up when it gets wet, she says. which is why i like it when it rains through the windows. he doesn't say anything, but his eyes move back and forth for a moment, as if he were trying to gather the floating bits of her words from the damp mid-evening air like pieces of electric wire, tangled and caught on the humidity. i'm raleigh, she says, with her face turned away from his, as if it were a side note, like she didn't really want him to hear, because if he heard it that means that he would have some minute piece of her identity to take with him and do what he would. this left him the freedom to ignore her, refuse to acknowledge his recognition of the back of her neck in a crowd, and she would know he was refusing because she knew that he was carrying that little piece in his pocket, twisting it between his thumb and forefinger like a rusty penny, as if he were contemplating whether or not to throw it into the gutter and reveal her to the rats and the concrete, and the mud which gets trapped between the souls of your shoes.

she didn't want him to forget her, like loose change in shallow graves, but she wanted even less for him to discard her like a useless shard of broken glass, as if he were afraid that she would draw blood, slice through the tips of his synapses like a razor in the brain, deathly terrified of the claws masquerading as eyelashes . that is why she whispers her name into the darkening row of uninterested strangers. self-preservation, she thinks. she can't see him anymore, except the silhoutte of his nose and the whites of his eyes when they pass under a glimmering street lamp or an all-night gas station offering a free carton of cigarettes with every fifty pound bag of ice in neon letters like a cheap vegas strip. she can't see him anymore but she knows that he's still listening to her, hearing her insecurities as they seep out like oil through the lines in her face. wondering whether or not to respond, whether or not to become involved and question in return, ask her why she didn't want to let him reject her. she does not give him time. she says, my parents got caught in a hurricane when they were driving to Georgia and they decided the best way to pass the time besides doing their laundry in a seedy motel basement was to have sex on top of the rumbling washing machine. they were in Raleigh - she tells him this and immediately regrets it, knowing that this detail is obvious, that she did not need to elaborate further on a story that was already sufficiently awkward and not the kind of story you tell a stranger on a bus during the night. it is really not a story you tell a stranger on the bus during the day either, but she's never had good timing or a sense of social regulation, and she was really becoming quickly infatuated with jonas. i was adopted, he says. she is horrified. i love you! she bursts out, and immediately regrets it again. she was only trying to make up for the sense of misplaced affection she had decided he felt towards the enigma of his origins, but somehow it only came through as a ridiculously outrageous statement of adoration. he looks at her for the first time, turning his head quickly to find her blushing and biting her lip, although he can see neither clearly because this stretch of highway is dark. thank you, he says, and looks out the window, the rain sliding like jellyfish across the glass, singing indignantly about their loss of memory and about why they couldn't wait to get free from the side of the bus.

you make me really uneasy, she says, and he grimaces. but quickly she stutteres it's not a bad thing, it's like when the waves break sideways and you can tell it's going to rain because of the way your brain prickles. my brain doesn't prickle he says and she says oh, maybe it's just me.

there is an invisible man standing beside you holding a mouse in the palm of his right hand, he says suddenly. how do you know he's holding a mouse if he's invisible? she asks. because the mouse is invisible too, he explaines. but if they're both invisible, how can you see either of them? easy, he says. when the mouse tells me where to look, i let my eyes relax and see through the atmosphere. he's real easy to see once you let the oxygen and the nitrogen return to their natural states. they aren't always so clear, but since that's how we've been told they look, we see through them. that's crazy, she says. maybe. what do i look like then? she asks. he tells her that it depends on the light, but sometimes she reminds him of barbed wire on rose petals, and sometimes she looks more like fire coral. she doesn't know how to take this, so she nods. he says that it is a good thing. then the invisible man puts the mouse on his shoulder and walks away. she still can't see him.

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