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Nothing again, nothing

Nothing again, nothing

by Stephanie on July 25, 2010

We spent weeks driving through sparse winter sunscapes, in such a rush to be somewhere else, in such a rush to be in a rush, stopping only for salt pans, salt plains, salt lakes, salt rock, salt water—like some giant god cried into the centre of this continent, underscored our apathy with tears that could only sustain a desert and buried themselves underground like you can’t find me and I don’t want to be found. And everything was water and rock, water and rock, water and rock. And it’s not hard to believe that everything was ever only water and rock, water and rock, rushing through the hard veins of the earth, sandstone and silicon, salt and moonscapes, faces in the dark.

Daylight is raw and I wonder if I would rather be back there in the empty sky, on cold granite in cold sun, trying to bubble my blood like girl, you were the snake, the lizard, the three degrees of separation, it was you. I want to be all these things I was told I couldn’t just because I shouldn’t, when will you settle down? like I’m supposed to be happy with three children, a house and a man who deigns to fuck me every now and then—no, fuck you, there’s a desert calling my name, a mountain, a spit-out-sideways precipice. And it’s easy to fall back into that, into love, you are my salvation, love, but out on that rock when the thunder is all that you can hear, the sound of the world turning right-way-up—out there you remember. You’re water and rock. You’re ancient and you’re transient. You’re scraps knotted together and you are whole.

Is it funny that the loneliest I’ve ever felt is between the sheets with someone else? Friends, lovers, sisters, brothers. The same words over and over again. The water in this city tastes like salt, and I want to destroy this thing that eats at me inside but you can’t make a shell bleed, and there’s nothing that disintegrates the desire to create like that self-destructive void, that my life can be nothing, that myth that you can find permanence in hot pulses of adrenaline when everything else is burning, burning, turning to ash. Ash heart. A faultline. A crack in the crust, thunder and the tremors echoing—quick, hold me, I need to stop these rocks collapsing, wearing away, salt and sand and somewhere here, somewhere, a trembling, miasmic, volatile heart. Right now the gulf is roaring and I need to drown it out.

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