the heroic body

originally published by great weather for MEDIA

 

When I was twenty-six, I gave my body away. But also at nineteen. And maybe twelve. Details are unimportant and have already been documented through ripped skin and hollowed tongue, so instead, I’ll make a mix tape of the trauma:

  1. Do I Move You?—Nina Simone
  2. Another Lonely Day—Ben Harper
  3. Colorblind—Counting Crows
  4. La valse d’Amelie—Yann Tiersen
  5. Burning Bridges—Chris Purkea
  6. Cleaning Apartment—Clint Mansell
  7. Change of Address—Marina Marina
  8. Fjogur Piano—Sigur Ros
  9. February—Gregory Alan Isakov
  10. The Rip–Portishead
  11. Dumb—Nirvana
  12. I Bleed-Pixies
  13. Son’s Gonna Rise—Citizen Cope
  14. That Moon Song—Gregory Alan Isakov
  15. Wake Up—Arcade Fire
  16. Home Again—Michael Kiwanuka
  17. Red Dust—James Vincent McMorrow
  18. The Winner Is—Devotchka
  19. Remember Me as a Time of Day—Explosions in the Sky
  20. Breathe Me–Sia

&

I’ll alphabetically list colors that could create a collage bright enough to illustrate it:

  1. alabaster
  2. bloodied knee from fist fight
  3. cysts
  4. denim
  5. exercise on a body after thirty-six years of sporadic movement
  6. forgotten grapes left in backpack from a camping trip, found six months later
  7. guitar string—the unplucked one
  8. how can one really describe purple
  9. illiterate notebooks, smudged from the rain/ someone left the windows open so now all that is left to read is / mold
  10. january sky on a friday four hours before snowstorm
  11. krystal meth [sic]
  12. left wrist after the breakdown
  13. marzipan
  14. nest of loons
  15. orgasm (the kind that means something)
  16. pie crust—overbaked
  17. quetzal
  18. radish
  19. something similar to yellow, but more like rubberband
  20. the inside of her kiss
  21. umbilical chord left unsnipped until first birthday
  22. very sour cherries
  23. what suburban new jersey looks like when you are high
  24. x-girlfriend’s mole
  25. your biggest secret
  26. zest from pomelo

or

perhaps it is even more accurately documented in this transcript which traveled from public bathroom floor to underneath chuck taylors to my hands, raw from —-

X: It meant nothing.

Y: Only if nothing means the carpal tunnel syndrome of wounds.

X: Pardon?

Y: The numb. Knowing there is something there, waking up. Trying to yawn out of skin, but—

X: It can’t.

Y: Nothing means nothing anymore. Everything is found. Known. Cut-up into an argument.

X: But. But it can go away.

Y: Only if away means a permanent disconnection of hypnotized raw. The uncooked symbolism of everything that has been taken.

X: Or given—

Y: Yes…away.

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