A woman said to me once, It almost doesn’t
feel like it’s two-thirty.
I’ve kept this in my brain ever since, next to where I keep
particular lines of poetry, but away from the pertinent information. I
can’t recall what prompted the statement, although it may’ve
been in response to some confession I’d been dying to confess.
Women have a way of leaving their mark, of staying with you.
When lacking a satisfactory answer I always manage to compose a
stoic look on my face. Brooding, even. This is because I am no good
on the spot or off the cuff. I usually need days to respond to a
question to anyone’s satisfaction.
This woman was beautiful in a way that makes you sorry you were
Example of typical exchange between myself and woman who said, It
almost doesn’t feel like it’s two-thirty.
What is wrong with you?
Stoic look on face. Brooding, even.
A pregnant woman was walking her dog in the middle of the night
in a park where I was sitting on a bench contemplating death and
masturbation. She walked the way pregnant women walk, particularly
when they are out in the middle of the night walking dogs. It is
the same way fat women walk to the bathroom. I don’t know
if she did this every night, walk the dog this way. There are things
you know about her, though, without having to ask. Mostly, she wouldn’t
appreciate this kind of recognition.
If you see her say I’m sorry.
At that moment she was the object of an affection I cannot describe
nor explain. I thought maybe it was misplaced. I thought maybe the
affection should’ve been directed elsewhere. That is my tragedy,
if I have one. Otherwise it’s not being able to make sense
of such things. The pregnant woman is her own tragedy and I have
almost nothing to do with it. But mostly I regarded her as a subject.
Of what, I’m not certain.
In the end, I’m not sure I can differentiate between subject
One could ask, What were you doing in a park in the middle of the
night sitting on a bench contemplating death and masturbation?
And what exactly does contemplating death and masturbation entail? And
what kind of a person engages in such activity?
Stoic look on face. Brooding, even.
Perversion is one of those eye of the beholder things.
I watched her walk the dog.
I have no real need to express anything and certainly no affinity
for it. I’d rather look pensive and have others misinterpret
whatever countenance I’ve affected.
All this until I am left with a pregnant woman walking her dog in
the middle of the night. There was no exchange between myself and
the pregnant woman walking her dog in the middle of the night, typical
or otherwise. If there had been it would’ve concluded quickly.
Example of imagined exchange between myself and pregnant woman walking
her dog in the middle of the night:
Is it a boy or girl?
You shouldn’t be out here.
Because it almost doesn’t feel like it’s two-thirty.
Certain patterns of behavior tend to repeat themselves, like history.
I wouldn’t call it a vicious circle, though. I’d call
it a vicious figure eight.
Had I taken the leash from her hands and with her watching, hanged
myself with it, it would be her telling this story now. Except it
would be different.
Although, the sort of pregnant woman that walks dogs in the middle
of the night is also the sort of woman that carries a handgun in
her jacket pocket and when approached by strange men in the middle
of the night tends to shoot first and tell stories later.
So the story could involve a shooting and let’s face it, every
story should involve a shooting.
Or else someone who can make sense of things.
Or else a quick and resolute conclusion.
Example of story that involves a shooting or someone who can make
sense of things or a quick and resolute conclusion:
The park is empty. The man is not contemplating anything. The woman
is not pregnant. The dog is not walking and the circle is not circling.
The gun is where any can find it.