catch myself, make it real

I’m sorry, I couldn’t call. I tried, but I hung up when you said “hello?” I hadn’t planned on doing that, at least not consciously, but I freaked when I heard your voice and it sounded exactly as I’d imagined. OK, not exactly, because no matter how hard you try you can never really hear someone’s voice in your head. Even if you’ve known a person for a thousand years, there’s always something missing when you try to imagine him or her saying something. Fantasies are merely ventriloquist sessions with fancy dummies.

That’s what someone should do, invent sex dolls with strings on the back of their heads, so you could flap their big wet mouths open and closed and have them whisper all the words we all want so badly to hear.

“Hello?” There was emphasis on the question mark: it was vaguely mocking, serving to drive home the truth of the caller’s audaciousness. “Hello? Who the fuck do you think you are, calling me?” But there was also a note of suspicion—you were tentative, perhaps having had a chance when the phone rang to think about how you’d given your number to me, and how maybe that was me calling right now and you don’t really know who I am or what I’m about or what I might want.

As for me, I already explained how this is the thousandth time we’ve met. At least I got as far as writing that your voice was already in my head. There’s some dubbed-out mix with your name on it, a compilation of all my naughty desires and my dirty little memories burned into wax by my brain’s very own phonograph. The house wheel, the one that comes as a factory standard, pre-installed in the sacred studio where all the master tapes are produced. The variations on your “voice” makes up the soundtrack to the movie in my mind, in which I walk across the screen (preferably a drive-in screen, so i can be a giant) and I (closeup) look up and see you (pan right!) standing on white concretesteps, leaning against the doorway with your shades on.

The wind blows. You’re looking out from under your dark bangs. I’m wearing my black Pinhead T-Shirt and a natty green cardigan. The sun dips dramatically behind a cloud.

But not too dramatically. Not to the point where it's stupid and lame.

You lower your shades and we look each other in the eye. In that second, we meet in some strange halfway place, where there’s only half-light and half-thoughts…desires, mainly…colors, urges…music.

An entire future spins out in front of us.

I walk up the steps and take a pack of cigarettes out of my pocket. You’re still holding my gaze, like a hawk or a child.

We’re both pale as Goths.

You’re leering, beautifully. I feel like singing.

Maybe I hung up because in all my scenarios, I never thought your first words to me would be, “Hello”.

I always imagined you’d say, “It’s you.”


“Come here,” as you stretched out your arms to embrace me.

(yeah they really want you they really want you they really do)


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