I write with a vague sense of dread. I listen for a ringing bell, but there is a silence thicker than sludge which coats my ears. The telephone is silent, I wait for a presence on the other end. A familiar voice that often calls me back to the land of softness and kisses. But with each second that passes, I slip a little father into the deep hole. I recognize this dark pit like the smell of tortured death and sticky blood; my chamber of cobwebs and singular hatred, it’s windowless and cold. It is a space of hollowed dank earth and composting life, but I cherish this hole, despite the offending smell of urine and rot, I find my way back here in seconds, even when I’m miles away. After hours of soft lovemaking, despite drops of crystal bliss, one word can light the way to this hole. The fall is fast and the landing is even harder. From the bottom I look up, barely aware of life outside. Haven’t I always been here? Feasting on fat worms and drinking the piss of ghostly demons. As I wait for the phone, each typed word is an attempt to crawl out. When my fingers pause, I slip…so I try to move fast. Can I transform this lurid form? or will it take me over, transforming the pretty girl on top into the monster that hides in her caves. With a word she is blackened with pain. One misinterpreted silence sends her down, her home awaits. Puddles of mud are her mirrors, and she chokes on the mangled images. There is no room for love here, just a tender bed of pain, made of nails and her own lost flesh. In this place she makes yellowed curtains from joy, and cakes out of hope.
But I cannot make the phone ring, the man does not answer, he does not call. I worry about the labored breathing I heard twelve hours ago. The small black phone jiggles and lights up, but perhaps his eyes are closed, lost in the soft blue shades of his dreams. Answer my call. I put myself in your vision, a small girl holding a little yellow flower. I see you reach out with a long, slender, white arm; pushing the stem into your beard, you smile and say thank you. The flower moves in the wind like a pinwheel, harnessing the strength of the wind, you grow taller. Like a windmill stuck into a leafy black brush. Oh my love! Can you hear me calling? I try to grab the sides, try to grasp tiny bits of life on the edge of my favorite black hole. The landscape is vast and flat, an arid land of long-yellowed grasses and a red-black sky. Like the colors in a negative, nothing looks real. Matter is white, while the air becomes more heavy cloaked in colored blood. Moment by moment I drift. I am looking down into the deep hole. Now, I lay on my back, amazed how far I have fallen. Now, I am climbing out. I am falling in, I am climbing out. I am far away, I am moments from slipping once again. There is no constant, just the ongoing battle, the struggle to stay out and the desire to fall in. I hear the inner record that makes me lose my balance, I see the ground begin to sway… I take the deep breaths that help me stay above ground. The negative mantra plays, the careful steps dig me out. On and on, the tug of war continues.