Thursday, June 07, 2007

After Chernobyl blew, the surrounding towns were all looted and their radioactive left-behinds sold around the country in various black markets. No one stopped to put a little orange sticker on them warning prospective buyers that the things might leave them glowing, and so unmarked radioactive loot was quietly strewn all over the country. And no one knew.

And maybe I'm feeling a little bit like a chunk of secretly radioactive girl material, as though if you asked me where I came from I might say, "Cherno---er, Hoboken." And since you wouldn't listen even if I told you, maybe I'll crawl under your skin and give you tumors. Just because. It could happen.

And maybe I'm just looking at you like this because you're my new ship in a bottle, and as long as I'm distracted I won't have to stop and pay attention to what I've been doing. To the black holes I've been carrying in briefcases like a cartoon character all this time. To the fact that the toothpicks I've been using to prop up my heart this whole time are pointier than I thought, and making inroads where they weren't invited.

Maybe I want to try and distract you by throwing the contents of my pockets in the air and running away, because you are looking at me like you're already scheduling the nostalgia. And that's both scary and unwelcome.

Or maybe I've been feeling like a hangover in a country song, like I fell asleep on a train, missed my stop, and ended up in a completely new town. Like I got off the train at the general store someplace dusty and sparse and thought, "Hey, this is where I live now." Because there are never really any warnings that everything's about to change, so a train whistle and a tarnished clock striking the hour are as good an indication as anything else.

Maybe I'm confusing my love songs with my drinking songs and my drinking songs with my love songs, and maybe my drinking love songs are all the same anyway, still directed towards you, and still in the wrong key.


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