Yesterday, we were girdled secretaries with glossy toes. Gia was back and she bounced, and we squealed to see her. We all wanted to take off our perfect costumes because the heat on the top floor of the castle is thick and sleepy and damp in mid-July. Our hair bubbled up frothy on our heads, full of pins and bows. Tonight there will be cupcakes and milk onstage. Monday was jockstraps and leather somewhere off Castro Street. We too are image makers and the impulse is deep and old and persistent. Is this about money? And yet it’s also an act of love. But not the way they always taught: “love-making,” a phrase that never made sense to me. This is not how love is made. It’s concrete and viscera, the wet and hard and dirt and rope. This work smells like braking trains and oranges and that’s a different kind of love.
“You’re doing a public service,” someone tells me, but it isn’t true. As the power dynamics change, it only becomes more mine.
Ask me what I want on any given day and I can not tell you. “Sleep,” I’ll say, or “popcorn.” Nothing changes that, no matter what ceremonies, no matter what books and planes. I want: 500 words a day, all pink everything, whiskey, beauty, complex problems to unravel. I want wet and glitter and love. But none of that illuminates a path.
It’s a new project now, being an ageless age and evil in photographs and the painful sorting of poems in Oakland with Joseph. How can I be a maker? 500 words a day, minimum.
“I won’t put my makeup on for less than 400 dollars,” I once heard a woman say.
The dog as usual sleeps about it and his eyelids move rapidly, his face squashed against my leg. There are so many of us trying to make. In the morning before makeup I think about journalists, consume so much of the work of journalists both clumsy and skilled and I think of what’s been written about me and by me and which of the words can teach me something. What can I do? That is not rhetorical.
Outside of our house there are ginko trees, olive trees, eucalyptus. All of the trees are green and silver like money.