The overcast sky has erupted at last with black malignance, fat impacted swirls of celestial smoke. The wind is smashing through the trees, wrenching branches aside in cracks; the wind chimes scream; the sundial has gone out. The pool seethes, flat awful gusts moving like tectonic apocalypse over the surface. Then, one by one, the drops begin to fall; splashes like charges exploding from deep within the chlorine. A drop falls on you, bullseye, through your loose rivet in the ceiling.
He lets the dish slide slowly into the water, and then he braces his hands against the side of the sink, bearing down on the counter as if he’s a magnificent palace and it must bear his weight.
You wish you could stop worrying all the time and just enjoy staring into a candle flame.
You hear yourself do the take number, the count. You sound confident. As soon as Marshall’s drums kick in, you raise the master volume on the playback as far as it can go, raise it until it is drilling your eardrums, the throb of electric guitars cutting a Z-for-Zorro in the soft tissues of your brain. You close your eyes and hurt yourself with your own music until you are convinced that it exists, that maybe nothing else does, that at one point at least you believed in it. It couldn’t hurt anyone if you didn’t.
Ramona opens it, still wearing her concert uniform from earlier, her chemical-splayed hair extended vertically in the back as if she’s picking up signals from distant, Drake-equation-defying planets that you will never hear.
Eileen Myles realllly hated “Blue is the Warmest Color.”
She is the best
She, this girlfriend of yours, Brian, is a horrifying jagged vision, black clamdiggers and black T-shirt with red Edward Teach sigil she sewed on it in Homemaking class (grade F), black sunglasses in white frames perched on her forehead, hair encased in crystal lacquer and extending like TV aerials from her skull, mouth painted in purloined makeup made from industrial chemicals so powerful that the radiation off of her lips is surely incubating cancers in everyone within a mile.
Zero’s face, a dark distant smear, is just visible through the glass behind him, evil fires burning behind his shades, radiating damage without light or warmth.
You’re all right, she confirms.
Yeah, you say. I guess you really coulda murdered me.
It would have complicated things, she replies.
Dark red-brown hair that falls over your eyebrow except where pulled back by tense unconscious fingers; pale white skin like ghost tuna lured up from strange trenches; lips red, bitten, and worrying; jaw shaded in flesh like burger-fueled chiaroscuro; your eyes are as blue as Tom Happy’s and as cold; you have never noticed that before and no one has ever told it to you; you wonder why.