I can hear the sound of him sucking down a cigarette over the phone.
It springs into my mind, unbidden, a picture of him standing on an apartment balcony overlooking the city, the breeze blowing the smoke away to disappear among the clouds.
His surroundings are probably in actuality less whimsical, but it's what my mind supplies. More importantly, though, I can see the way he holds his cigarette, arm cocked out, his lips pressed around the filter. There is nothing lackadaisical about the way he smokes, nothing slow and careless like the old men around here with their cigarettes…
I know a boy who has not been taught how to process his feelings.
When he was very young, there was a slew of different men featuring in his life, the various men that his mother dated and hung out with. Some of these men were nice to him, some not-so-nice, and some completely indifferent to his very existence. …
When you are triggered by someone you know…
It didn’t take long for me to like him. While there are many kind and thoughtful people in the world, few of them are also unafraid of introspection, and willing to share what they find within themselves with me. He was both.
He spoke a language I could understand. I haven’t had a platonic friend like that since high school; I haven’t had a male friend whose main interest in me wasn’t the possibility of sex since high school. To find one who both genuinely appreciated those talents of mine that scare…
It seems like every time I go onto Medium these days I am stumbling into articles that, at their core, are motivated by hate and meant to cause division. “I hate men”, “I hate white people”, “I hate Republicans.”
I understand why people would be angry at the oppression they have faced — God knows, I have faced oppression too. I have been minimized, ostracized, and silenced by the Christian church. I have been sexually and mentally abused. I write about these experiences, because for me that has been an important part of processing what I’ve been through.
July is only a few months old the first time I meet Specimen K. We are visiting M and the Alien, admiring the stone the Alien has put up around his little woodstove, when their neighbor shows up with a fat blunt and a sour-faced girlfriend.
Something about him doesn’t sit well with me from the minute he steps in the door. It’s not a feeling that he’s a bad person, necessarily — there is no pervading aura of evil or even bad intentions — it’s just a feeling of wrongness. …
The Jester is necessary.
I watch as he struggles with his feelings, afraid to become too real of a person in Misty’s eyes, not crippled but heavily bruised by past betrayals.
His voice over the phone is a little softer, a little deeper, maybe a little huskier than his usual playful tones. His sadness is tangible — but that is all there is, sadness. No anger, no accusation. He takes his sadness into himself. He blames himself.
I think back to the last time I saw him, the Jester. I picture his eyes, red with frustration, the way…
My partner, Jester, is old school when it comes to the American flag. It is a source of pride for him, as it is for many patriotic Americans, and he can get upset when the flag is disrespected.
I don't fly an American flag. I don't wear red, white, and blue on Independence Day; to me, as to many of my generation and younger, the flag represents a flawed system and the largely corrupt government that insists on keeping that system in place.
Jester has a flag, however, and I have learned to accept that it's his right to fly…
The body on the table is fresh. He leans over it with the air of a curious collector, inspecting it. His hair falls into his eyes as he touches the legs and he brushes it back impatiently. This one is in reasonably good shape, its mouth slightly open where it gasped for its last breath.
“What do you think, Dom?” A tall man with sharp features and even sharper eyes, one of those vampire types, seems to materialize out of the deep shadows surrounding the circle of light cast by one bright light. He comes up beside Dom and hovers…
a death of my own choosing.
Let me watch my children
and my children’s children.
Let me attend the funerals
of my mother
And then let me drink a cup of poison
or slice open my veins
so I’ll know how it feels
to bleed out
And close my eyes
for the last time.
When I die,
lay me on the table
Give my liver, my kidneys
to those who need them.
Take my lungs
so someone may breathe.
Use my blood
— Be positive —
to give someone a second chance at life.
Set my heart and brain
I have a confession to make. I have never voted.
In the 2016 presidential race where Trump ran against Clinton (a reminder of it in case you have forgotten that historic event), Ben Carson was a candidate for Republican nomination. He was a retired neurosurgeon and possibly the most reasonable person I have ever seen in politics. His biggest mistake, in my opinion, was running on the Republican ticket; his politics could best be described as centrist and he may have had a better shot running as a Democrat.
If he had won the nomination, I would have registered to…