I played a show last night and met a girl, nameless for right now, that was in one of the bands we were headlining for. I could describe this girl as classically beautiful but it wouldn’t give homage to the way her lips curl into a pout and her features are so delicate they could make men leap to their deaths just to kiss her feet.
I met her because her band said they wanted us, Hot Grits!!! to play with them at some of their future shows. When I saw her, my heart immediately dropped without even knowing the information that was to come. I was stunned by her eyes, marked with grave sadness though her spirit remained feisty and compelling. She raised her fist at the men of guitar center for asking “what instrument her boyfriend plays,” even though she had come alone to find her own gear and I was taken in. She clearly did not seem to be flailing about through life and soon after, I found out that really she was enraged and numb, which peculiarly can coexist. A week and a half ago, her boyfriend hanged himself. She wasn’t the one who told me, her bandmates did. Her bandmates that I didn’t know, but were obviously numb too were drinking themselves into a temporary stupor because death sometimes drives people to that, to obsessively placate the side of themselves that wants to cry, die, fly away into no that false hope of good night.
I tried to place myself for the rest of the night into their shoes… into her shoes. If they hadn’t said something I would have just thought she had drunk herself into a mindless melancholy, instead I knew she was drinking to get out of it.
It was because of a long ago memory that I cared as much as I did, not that I would have otherwise been callous.
College… [numerous things want for insertion here]
The story of K, a pseudo love story.
She was an RA in an old dorm of mine and I had fallen in love with her words. The first time I met her was a poetry reading at The Kickstand Cafe in my senior year of college. She was doing a reading for her poetry class and I came along to see what my old prof.’s new students were up to.
BT, with an overfilled earl grey singeing his hands said, “I really think you should meet this girl, she reminds me of you. She’s good.” I took my seat in the back room of the cafe and waited for this girl, this wonder of wonders that BT was so enamoured with and put my jealous face on. She was stealing my place as his favorite student and I had to assess the damage.
The room as a whole is filled with dark and brooding hopeful writers dressed in blacks and dark grays, gripping their coffees a bit too tightly.
Students go up and students sit down and I am on the whole unimpressed and am sure that in this room full of budding writers there’s got to be a good one and then he called her. “Kristina, how about you?” I saw her petite frame and medium length dirty blond hair and thought, “she’s got nothing good to say.” She got up and wrapped herself in the wooden chair up front and flipped through a few pages. Her thumb used her tongue for leverage on the papers and she found her spot. As she breathed to read I could hear it… her sadness, a life of loss unwinding before us. Of course, this is why she is so good – she is lost. And finally she read. She was just reading words, but they were perfectly puzzled together and there was space where space should have been and not where there shouldn’t. He was right, she was fucking fantastic, she was better than me, she was sadder than I had ever been; my heart was immediately impaled and wanted the sword to be driven deeper.
I had to know more of her from that point on, this girl of despair. However, there are things I know now about my lust that I didn’t understand then. 1. I was captured by something that I knew much about and could translate from her to myself, which was the desperation of despair. I had lived it for many years and was drawn in by it again. 2. Savior complex- when I met her I was better, or as “better” as one gets when suffering from bi-polar disorder. I was convinced that if I just talked to her I could make her better.
Neither of the aforementioned things makes for anything but heartbreak, besides that, she was straight. I found myself needing to be near her and asking one of my friends to let me know if she would be in the SUB – student union building, just so I could see her. My friend JE had a class with her and was on the shallow side of being her friend, meaning acquaintance and so he would sometimes talk to her and I would listen in. I overheard her speak of her pills one day with her friends and she laughed a bit, something I knew meant she was hiding.
A few weeks later I constructed an e-mail, which I liked to consider my Jesus mail, being that it was supposed to “save” her. I wrote about my depression and getting through it and this and that and this and that and hit… save. I neither deleted nor sent this e-mail to her. I saved it and fixed it and savored it for the right moment to send. Thought on how a girl that barely knew my name would understand such a candid e-mail. I never hit send.
March 12th, 2003 – [fuck that seems like a long time ago] the girl I was secretly in love withcommitted suicide, with a noose around her neck.
For a long time I thought that sending that e-mail would have done something and maybe it would have- for a day. Perhaps it would have made her think for one second that someone cares, but then I thought about the reality of it. At my worst, not even obvious love and affection could make me understand that I was worthy of space, I have difficulty now at my almost best.
Life can often feel like a pile… but when I heard that another, another, and another had committed suicide I couldn’t help but feel that momentary jealousy that I used to feel, the “why am I not strong enough to die?” feeling that creeps up and wonders at why I could go only as far as some pills and water.
No day is carefree. I am not carefree. But to those reading I’m kind of glad you’re alive and I’m alive to let you read it.