Over 8 million humans live here in this land called new york city. It can be difficult to locate another who houses the same concerns as you. Or requires a similar amount of sleep as you do. One whose appetite is comparable to yours. One who votes in the same political party as you or understands the beauty of black ink pens over blue. One who has a similar work ethic. One who kisses as though your mouth unlocks theirs.
You ask around. In search of your other. Everyone keeps telling you to go online. They tell you to set aside some time to answer all of the questions, find a photograph worthy of getting someone’s attention.
Before you have a chance to type in the web address of this most popular dating service, you unplug your matchmaker.
You are a fan of typewriters and clock radios. Your pocket protrudes from your flip phone, which includes no internet or fancy ring tones. So you grab a piece of paper and favorite pen. You think about what you are looking for in a mate. Write down their coordinates. Various adjectives. Gender non-specific, though you prefer they are queer. Hope for a human who owns more books than technological toys. You ink out a list of feelings you might have around them: safe, inspired, lusty, understood, cared for, satiated, full, understood, safe, understood, celebrated, challenged, safe.
You write down some words more than once to remind you how important they are.
You roll this piece of paper up like a religious scroll. Place faded red rubber band from farmer’s market produce around it, to keep it from unraveling. You give these words time to surface.
Patience can be a difficult thing to channel when you are in search of love.
In the meantime, you stay off line. You enter rooms full of humans of varying appetites and politics. You travel. You exit your comfort zone of extreme shyness. You let go of the fear that you will never love again. You read. You listen to music. You make music. You write poems. You eat a lot. You cook. You learn new meals to eat and cook. You locate muses living in various parts of the country in which you live in. You take walks. You ride your bike. You travel over bridges on foot and bike wheel. You nap on benches. You strengthen your body through yoga and weight lifting. You locate the language of your body and give up various words like shame and gender conformity. You give yourself permission to live out loud even if that confuses others because sometimes inconsistent presentations cause others to feel uncomfortable. You masturbate until it feels good. You stop apologizing so much. You prepare yourself to learn the art and act of loving again.
Humans aren’t like parking spaces; we won’t run out. That mate written on that piece of paper is out there. You may have already met them. And after all that preparation, you will be ready this time.