nobody knows what to say
i take that back, we know of plenty to say, plenty to be furious at plenty to be right about plenty to retaliate with plenty to argue and prove and disprove and rule out and lie about but so often it does not come about until you are standing in your kitchen building to the boiling point, remembering how you wanted to be as tough as nails and ended up noodles, vulnerable and chewed up, and suddenly you’re sympathizing with food, crying over hindsight and plates of spaghetti, gritting your teeth and grating parmesan while your dinner guests are alarmed and apprehensive, circumspect at your spectacle but still respectful not to ask why you’re peppering their supper with the salt of your tears. so, then, if i said
nobody knows what to say in the moment
i would have to take that back, too. sometimes the words are there, filling the spaces between your teeth as your tongue tries to find room to move, fights for an upheaval of cinderblocks on the gas pedal as you approach the cliff horizon. maybe sometimes it’s better to plunge by yourself and not strap the seatbelts on everyone else, though, right (from the get-go, maybe you let ‘em know the airbags don’t deploy, you know they won’t but you still feel the non-existent expectation, the temptation to attempt )? shouldn’t it be better to shut and lock the doors and laugh at the bottom of the ocean at all the metaphors and wait for water to swallow you like you swallow words? if that’s true, then i should say
nobody knows if what they say should be said
and i would wonder if i should take that back, as it would both defeat and define the purpose of this piece, an endless Möbius strip tease that should wind up naked and brutal but circles back to veiled and futile, everyone shaking fists full of singles, frustrated without a g-string strummed to stuff them into, desperate to place their bets on a sure thing, on something that isn’t ourselves, because according to the discord the lack of confidence causes a silence, a quiet destruction of our inner constructions, becoming pathetic pariahs in a hierarchy of one, broken chains of command that could be reconnected if only someone would pick up a welding torch but because
nobody says what they should and everybody says what they shouldn’t
i wouldn’t say any of this
and you shouldn’t tell me i’m right.
Pointless Objects with Useless Purpose!
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Her cat ascends the chair, and her, and c-u-rrrls up on her chest like she’s little more than a rather warm and occassionally shifting cushion. Which, to him, she is. But he’s too polite to ever /say/ that, of course. Not that she would even understand if he did; but it’s the principle of it all, he thinks to himself, as his tail lazily swishes and bats time against his human-shaped chair. He’s not an alley cat. He has /manners/. (And a nice, warm place to sit and be patted. He’s not about to give /that/ up.)
She puts up with it because he’s warm and soft too, and because she’s so used to it that she doesn’t even think to question it; he’s been around for a very long time.
He knows a lot of secrets.
Did you know that cats keep secrets the best?
Cats hold secrets close to their skin, wound tightly round the roots of their fur. (Never trust a hairless cat; they’re the ones that give all their secrets away.)
They curl around you to rub your secrets into their skin: the ones you murmur to them when it's just you and them; the ones that seep out of your pores when your skin beads with sweat and fear, or grows damp with joy or sorrow; the ones written in the tempo of your touches on soothing, soft fur. We’re leaking secrets all the time, without even knowing. (But they know. They always do.)
They soak up our secrets like leaves do the dew, and lick them off their own skins, swallowing them down whole.
That’s why ancient fortune-tellers used to slice their bellies open and look inside: they’re full of secrets. Of the things that were, and the things that are, and the things that may one day come to be.
That’s why the Egyptians used to mummify their cats. They had to take back their secrets from the still bodies before others could claim them for their own. (Remove the vital organs and seal the skin, lest dead cats tell your tales.)
These secrets have long been forgotten. But the cats know, and remember.
And /they/ aren’t telling.
Random thing my brain popped out, based on an exchange with a friend whose cat was sitting on her and wanting snuggles:
[12:02:20 PM]woodland chiuaua: i wannt him to stay with me forever which is silly cause hes just a cat but he has been arounnd a very long itme