Jacob Lawrence, "Dreams No. 2: Memories" (1965)
Jacob Lawrence, Dreams No. 2: Memories (1965)
Can a Game Be Literature?

Mark's Pages



Sad, eaten away. Over myself, over life, over her.

Immobility. Frozen, as when two opposing forces cancel each other out.

Resentment of sex, which in some way I blame for the end of our friendship.

From my new front window you can see the tall dorm where she once lived, more than ten years ago.

Surely the reason I haven't called in all this time is that I think she's right to stay away.

Often I feel like the twin in the Marty Feldman movie: sock her in the eye and I fall down.

Sadness, always, in all directions, equally, like the cosmic background radiation from the Big Bang.

Her birthday has come and gone, and I'm alright.

Whether fortunately or unfortunately, things aren't that simple. Have never been able to reach for the phone, because at bottom I despise the poor thing as much as I miss her.

Being in love is a miserable disease. I remember waiting a whole weekend to hear from her, when she wasn't where she'd said she would be, and I needed some kind of reassurance.

Why does it feel so real, if it isn't? Easy answer: because you want it to be.

Miss her for the love she gave, the way she held nothing back, for the color of her skin, the sound of her laugh, for everything she meant when we were close.

Her photo on my desk, years old. At the bottom in child's handwriting she wrote, "Miss La Jolla, 1988." Dark jacket with blue scarf, shy smile, at night with the sea crashing behind her.

Why doesn't she love me?

Because there was never any "contact". There was only ever her lovely skin. You thought she understood you. She never understood you. She admired you at first and you became so inflated over that admiration that you spent years in a relationship of co-dependence and mutual destruction. It's true that you tried very hard; but so what. She never saw that effort.

I know I'm shouting I like to shout.
I know I'm shouting I like to shout.
I know I'm shouting I like to shout.
I know I'm shouting I like to shout.
I know I'm shouting I like to shout.
I know I'm shouting I like to shout.
I know I'm shouting I like to shout.

This is not my life.

Want very much to reconnect with the loves I knew before she came, and made them all seem pale.

Feel I've failed in this life in an exceptionally deep, deep way. That I haven't been generous to friends, haven't given the love I should have, have caused pain where I shouldn't have, haven't created life when I should have, haven't contributed whatever talents I possess. That people are estranged from me, who should love me best.

It's like Star Trek. You feel that you walked through the wrong door somehow and landed in an alternate universe: "This is not my life. This is someone else's life." So that you spend your days and nights searching for the way home, examining every minute or trivial detail of what happened, as if there were the hidden outline of a secret door waiting somewhere to be found.

And I think, how can this mistake ever be redeemed?