Epidermis (II)

vertebrae_visible Our [love] is a fleeting moment, our bed is a tomb. We’re making [love] to avoid the word. In the morning I get rid of the skin that touches you during the night and make a suitcase out of it to remember the burden of that touch. During the day touch turns into whisper. We, like many others, have fallen into the cliché of thinking that our [love] must be a fleeting moment. For them, it’s always [he] and [she] for eternity. Their fables show the triumph of that closeness happening between two bodies of a different kind. Although ours are the same we never seemed more different. The fables that we utter must be written in fleeting deictics. Our [love] never stops seeking. For us it’s always [me] and [you], and no one knows who [I] am, and [you] are the atom of negligible presence. Our [love] is the sacrifice we perform in view of our end, when our happiness shall happen elsewhere, most likely in between these pages. We live exiled, reunited, and then exiled again, once more, by these very hands.

The other body

by Isabelle Vigier
by Isabelle Vigier

Crumpled paper. That’s how my body feels like after the waves. They no longer have an effect on me. My body got used to them. This is cause for concern among the doctors and the nurses, I overheard them talking about it the other day. They said a higher voltage might do the trick. There’s no talk about the thorns though. They’re visible enough. I wanted to remind them of my thorns but I made a vow of silence to myself. Every time I want to say something words seem to turn back inside my throat. I want to push them outside but somehow they manage to get back inside and throw themselves against my brain. My limbs have been growing limbs on the inside. I now have four hands and four legs. Two hands on the outside, and two hands on the inside. Two legs on the inside, and two legs on the outside. I will grow a brain inside my brain. My other body shall move through the density of this body, the one that you held in your arms, and it will breathe blood instead of air. The body inside my body is very different from the one that you see. It is much more beautiful. You’ve had your say into this. That body is a faceless body. I left some room for creativity as I always do. You’ll be able to fill in the blanks, put the face that you wanted me to have all along. Maybe it is the body that you always wanted me to have. I’m sure that it is the body that I always wanted me to have. The one that I almost sold my soul for. I would go outside at midnight and pray to the devil. I asked him to give me beauty in return of my soul. He never replied, naturally. I eventually gave up. My other body, growing inside my guts, is not as transparent as this one. At one point this body will fall off, the thorns will dry and they will fall off too, just like a rose dries and lets its petals fall to the ground. This body is not like the body of a rose. This body is more like that of a serpent. Its skin is made of scales. It will fall off at one point, when the time is ripe. You are the idea that occupies the mind, the idea that transforms itself into a physical state.

Dear Author

Dear AuthorYou live a sort of life, or this thing you call life. Others expect you to call it life. I believe that is why we have a word for it. Words become words out of necessity. The necessity of a human being. A writer’s necessity. You live a life in which you are never quite sure if you are going up or down until the very last moment, until your very last breath is spent on recovering all those moments from the past you call memories. While you do that you realize that every recovered memory is inherently an apology first to yourself, then to all those who have touched you, and then, finally, to all those who have seen you at one point. Yes, even to those. Until you become yourself a walking apology. Have you ever thought of how an apology looks like? Behold the very flesh and bones of a walking apology. The books that you write are themselves apologies. You apologize and ask for forgiveness to your characters, for giving birth to them and then leaving them to linger in a sort of fictitious limbo until you sort your things out. Problems with your girlfriend or boyfriend, your computer has a nervous breakdown, your neighbor’s kid will not shut up. All of these happen while your characters are waiting there, anxious for something to happen, anything. They are just characters, you think at one point, masks; they are supposed to do that. Yet, what if they are not supposed to do that after all? What if we are characters ourselves waiting for our author to figure things out? Then you apologize to yourself and to your own past. We all know that in books the past comes out distorted, changed, and broken. One memory comes out eyeless, faceless, earless, and with all limbs broken. Apologize to that, your sincerity shall be appreciated if you will ever be forgiven, that is. Then you apologize to everybody else because their story too came out in your book, in between the lines. Keep in mind though that you will never be forgiven. That character, still waiting in that airport for the love of his life, will never forgive you. Could you not give him what he wants? Just a few words, a few sentences and he would live happily ever after. Yet your stubbornness and the fact that you yourself lived a life tell you that this is how the story goes, and that his happiness needs to be sacrificed. How could he forgive you for that? For denying him that ending. Ultimately, it is just a matter of words is it not? How could you sacrifice that happiness for the sake of the story? Your duty ends there, you think, at the end of the story. You are the almighty author after all. Somehow, you know that asking for forgiveness is futile, but you do it anyway thinking, hoping that at least one third of the guilt will vanish, just like that, with those two words that you write at the end. You refer to it sometimes as signing a contract by which the internal mechanism of the book is set into motion. What you do not realize is that those two words are like a death sentence to your characters, their sorrows relived with every reader. How could you, dear author, ask for happiness yourself? When your own happiness will be, at one point, sacrificed for the sake of the story?