On Faggotry and Dissafection Pt. 2

Now. 2:54 A.M. I brought home a bag of fortune cookies I was given for free. I place it on my desk and it sits and I wait. I tear two open one after another reading the first fortune second and second fortune first. 1+1 does not always match 1+1, not when 1 does not equal 1. The second fortune says “You can’t build a reputation on what you are going to do.” The first fortune says “You cannot love life until you live the life you love.” I don’t remember the rest because I ate the whole bag, kinda high and without groceries. The cookies taste blank and I have no problem knocking ‘em back. And with an empty plastic bag and a mound of fortunes on my desk I write. I do not know if there is a life I love, a singular thing to adhere to. I do not know of self-discovery or any New Agey stuff, but I want to live. I notate myself. For you, ladies and gentlemen and all others. For your continued being, Jamie. 

Dostoveysky’s narrator in Notes From Underground, confesses “I derived pleasure from the blinding realization of my own degradation; that even if there were still enough time and faith left to become a different person I wouldn’t want to change myself,” It is like this, yes. I  see a series of loops, of rhymes anticipating what is going to be done; sinking back to observe as it unfolds, silvery and distant. I think it is beautiful. Today, I said to myself when I saw an auburn bird, “Look, that yellow bird,” remembering the words of Jack Spicer, now long a ghost. The yellow bird overlays with the auburn one and both are there, here, but I witness the auburn one pick up the yellow one and sink into its small chest, not assuming its form but taking it apart, wearing it. I do nothing but say the yellow bird’s name; it is a continuous moment of calling and witnessing, helpless. This is the condition of being tied to the mast, of having your fortune dictated to you by a cookie, a product of context. You are only able to read it and say to yourself. 

It is May 10th 2018. It is somewhere past 10 and you’re walking out the door telling your parents you’re off to see Georgia who’s practically your sister and will absolutely cover for you. 18 and home for 3 weeks before driving up to Berkeley with Mom. You climb in your Uber pool and drive around West Hollywood, witnessing people move in isolated clusters. Eventually you get to Sunset and Crescent Heights. He’s weird, but the other guy’s coming. It’ll be worth it. The two of you sit on the edge of the bed naked, and he won’t stop talking about the man who’s not yet there. Dude, August is so hot. I had no idea you were his type. Young, skinny, but like hey, you’re hot. For sure. August gets there and more than attractive, he’s impish. He’s alive. The moment loses its potential and the action takes place. They take turns fucking you. August serves as a conduit between the two of you, but pays no mind to the other man who watches you get fucked and caresses August’s ass all the while. 

His advances are rebuked. August cums in you. He offers you a ride home and what do you do but say yea. Get out of there. You smoke in his car Reds which now cut your runs short and pull you into sleep. As you wander vaguely easterward at 50 miles an hour on the empty streets, you become aware that gifts are being bestowed upon you, your words themselves coy and meaningless, part of a pleasurable free exchange. The soft purring coming from the engine goes out, the headlights go out. Parked outside the synagogue school on 3rd and Cloverdale, 2 blocks from home. You clamber into the backseat. His silhouette is still backlit, a veneer of silver around his dark stubble. I think I see joy. And yet it’s in a private little niche against the curb. If I am outside myself  I see my shadowy form moving and writhing through fogged glass; he revels in this small, shared bit of room. But I am within the fogged glass now. August is 29. It is May 11th I am still 18 and it is the last day I will see August; Rey will have gone to bed after waiting for so long, but trapped in the small, foggy car on display on the street, each moment asks to be acted upon, new and brilliant. It was not a rehearsal; it was not machinated. I only have negative theses, and even this is a negation. I, insofar as I was an I made of this moment, was unaware of its place in a symphony, in a melody. August was unimportant. It was May. It is April. It is May. I look in and observe my puerile smile, glinting in the streetlamp

Joel CampoComment