[The Lovers by Rene Magritte, 1928]
Three: A Morning
You push me and pull me. Do you love me or hate me? Three weeks of disaffection? I’m sure you are the one who hates. Why did you rest your head on my knees? If you really feel that, have decided that, like you never have decided before how you’ve never caught up with yourself and the way you think you should feel because that is the way a civilized person takes insult after insult till your body bends down and your head thrusts at one angle into the wind so as not to muss your hair so carefully coiffed and combed to cover a dissipation of strands, laying bare your skin, your skin, a shame you never got used to, never will love, will keep on losing hair and hating what it covered, hating yourself for being so vulnerable, so open to the sky’s dropping, so close to solid bone, the rock, the fortressed eye.
My whole life I’ve been beaten . . . everybody’s bigger. I cringe at bigness, I’ll say yes to avoid a scene anytime, to avoid the ugly brutality of you, your mass of hulking anger, bigger than me, hissing cursing, foul in your mind and spilling out your tongue, peasant, rude, your parents don’t want you, why should I treat you better, you’re lucky I love you. I desperately need you to keep me from dying of hate, self-hate. I reek of it, why can’t you clean me up, ma, you are here to clean me up, shine me, buff me, dress me, decide for me, direct me and then let me reject your direction. Then I can push against your bulking wall and rebound in the other direction. We’re caught in a room and I think that’s hysterically funny that you can’t get out. We’ll shove and shove, tumbling and bruising against walls with no windows, no doors, no air. I don’t need air.
Mixing noises my mom my dad pulling a hard rope between them yanking each other till I think they’ll fall. My pillow is soft and smells good. I am loose on my bed and here is the day the morning, my goose rests up there but he hears and freezes Please let it drop, please, please, kick it under the bed my belly waves up something I feel at times like this wanting to be somewhere in a little hall hidden in a dark corner, cover me let the night come back the quiet the sleeping words that stay hidden in deep places, don’t speak them, they stab. I hear you stab each other and every thrust pierces me. I’m little. But I can make it stop. I can put you together, make you kiss, put us together. If I don’t do it, nobody will. You won’t, you can’t you won’t stop, you could if you’d just say you’re sorry just say you’re sorry that’s all then we would be ok the way we are sometimes, laughing and poking silly jumps and scribbles please please I’ll do it I’ll do it I’ll do my homework I’ll eat my breakfast I’ll take my vitamins and brush my teeth. I’ll get myself dressed very fast and go school and be happy I’ll smile I’ll laugh at your jokes yes yes yes a very good, very good, the best boy