“Get a job, you fuckin slob” – Everlast

He’s missing one thing on that list and it’s glaring. Early on, I told him I wasn’t interested in getting involved with someone who fishes all day while I work. Since then, he’s used that example to justify.however he spends his days “I wasn’t fishing while you were working”. But now, right now, he’s asleep on my sofa, it’s after 2pm and I’ve been working 5 hours withouta break. I grew so resentful sitting on the computer while he snored softely with the cats that I had to get up and move to work in another room. In my own house. I began thinking, why doesn’t he hang the door he offered to fix? Yes, his company is enjoyable as he wears my ass out in bed or soothingly brushes my hair. But he doesn’t have a job.

Hes not uneducated or unskilled. He’s not severely disabled. I try to put him in the category of some of my favorite people who are “retired young”. If I didn’t have to work full time, I wouldn’t. I’d love to spend these quarantine months isolated in the cool apallachian hills. Hell, I’d like to be the one napping on the sofa. But I’m working. He’s napping. And I have an unspeakable problem with that.

In karmic timing, my astrologer swing dancer friend text to ask “What does he lack off your list?” I replied quickly, “A job” and confessed he was sleeping on my sofa as we spoke. She replied: Interesting! Well now that Venus is direct see where things go and maybe you’ll be able to move past his retirement flaw?”

Flaw. Un/underemployment as a flaw. Or perhaps the underlying lack of moral motivation to contribute to…what? The GDP? The growing world deficit? But if work can be had and the body is able, one should contribute until they are of the age or financial independence to retire. I add that last bit thinking of another couple of aquaintances who invested well, early and spend their days traveling and fucking off. I envy them. And resent them. Too much to date them too.

I’m going to wake him, and tell him it’s because he won’t sleep tonight if he sleeps all day. But also because I’m ready for him to leave.

UPDATE as of 26 June, 9th House astrology just posted this. https://wordpress.com/read/feeds/94710042/posts/2777945465

So even if my decision isn’t clear, the reason for my indecision, my upset gut, is clear:

“Neptune offers idealization and poetic longing while bypassing or totally ignoring the harsher details. Romantic idealization could lead to disillusionment or disappointment later down the road once Neptune’s veils are lifted off…you might find yourself changing your mind again moving back and forth between yes and no or both simultaneously.”

“Do you wanna touch…” Joan Jett / Greenday

Truth: there is a yoga video playing in the background while I stand in the kitchen eating pretzels. My excuse tonight is my dogs kept bum rushing me every time I tried to Cat-Cow.

I’m trying very hard to keep earning my paycheck because my employer doesn’t owe me a job. But trying to work from home on my own shitty hardware is like trying to recreate the Mona Lisa with a handful of blunt crayons.

I’m 43 and Greenday finally made a song that I like. But likely only because it rips the chorus from a badass Joan Jett tune.

Do you think history books will look back on this time and blame social and mass media for causing hysteria or is it a collective conspiracy by house cats worldwide? Or perhaps dogs are the more likely the culprits. M. Night Shyamalan Ding Dong made a movie about trees trying to wipe out humanity. This plot is house cats trying to turn us into one of them.

“Blame it on my juice, blame it, blame it on my juice”- Lizzo

No That’s not a reference to bodily fluids. It’s simply when a song comes on that was a hit 6 months ago and it triggers a deep nostalgia like “Those were the good days.”

I know everyone is freaking out, if not about Coronavirus then about how everybody is freaking out about Coronavirus. I know you’re inundated, maybe borderline OCD in your compulsion to stop listening to the news because you know it’s feeding the mania and yet you can’t resist. What if you miss something?

I miss dancing. I miss hot yoga. I even miss the gawdafyl ballet class. Sure, everyone is streaming but I don’t want to do yoga in my house. If I roll out a yoga mat and get close enough to the floor, I see paw prints and dog hair and can’t resist cleaning instead of down dogging. And now I’m going to miss the beach. They just closed that. When things first broke out, selfies and words of encouragement floated around telling us how this was a blessing in disguise, because now we would take long walks in the park, get our kids outside even while staying a safe 6 ft away from people. Then some a-hole in a helicopter took a picture of spring breakers on Miami Beach and ruined it all for the rest of us trying to stay sane and safe within the “rules”.

But I still go to work. And field questions from nervous friends and family looking to me to fact check The conspiracy theories nagging at their fried, rational minds. Like I have the Answers.

I have a lot of answers. Sarcastic ones. And if I open my mouth, I may start screaming. Or coughing. But that’s just seasonal allergies and chronic bronchitis so you can roll those eyes right back to where they came from.

“I can change if it helps you fall in love” LCD Soundsystem

It’s a Saturday and I just got home from work. Walked in the door and heard a jangling folk song on the radio which I leave on for the cats, and thought “I wonder what the last song is that they heard?” As I switched it to silence.

You don’t say good night.
And that’s how I know we will never be more than this.
Maybe I’ll use you, maybe you will use me back.
So what if we share a common core
You aren’t looking for anything more
Than someone to bind, to pass the time
I swear to God I’m not even trying to rhyme

I’m just starving
And that makes me vulnerable
But you remind me of someone I loved.

I’ve never met you and I want you to rule me. That’s out of character for me but I’m not going to overthink it, I tell myself as I overthink. I’m just going to enjoy it, and you.

I look forward to giving over control to someone that knows what to do with it, how to handle it.

We avoid getting too “personal” but I think you might “get” what I mean. Walking into work this morning, heels, skirt, I reached the door before whoever is behind me and politely hold it open. A man who far outranks me in my other life takes the door from me and says “not on your life ma’am, after you”. I LIKE the chivalry. I like the reminder that I am a woman. And it makes me think I’d be fine if I never put on the uniform ever again. It’s still a man’s world in or out of service but it’s more…polite, when I’m not trying to be a man.

But my horoscope for this month looks good. It hints at sex and connecting with someone unexpectedly. I can only hope it means I meet kinky Mr perfect and maybe at the least I don’t beat myself up overgetting it on.

I deliberately don’t ask too many personal questions. I know minor details like where he’s from and what that small tattoo on his back means. But I don’t know if he’s an only child or his favorite food. I’m careful not to get too friendly and I mean that quite literally as our conversations revolve around sex and kink almost exclusively with a little bit of ambiguous bitching about our jobs in the most general terms. But I have researched him just enough to be sure that he is who he says he is. But I don’t look up anything else. I don’t try to find him on social media. I’m not looking for pictures or details of how he spends his time.

But I was tempted. After 3 weeks of daily chatting, he disappeared for 3 days. Mid conversation too. I assumed that he had gone on a trip, maybe back to his home state where I envision him walking nude beaches and hooking up with liberal women before going to watch the super bowl with his boys. All I knew was that he wwas likely watching it wearing enough red to look like The Flash.

And so I reconciled that I probably wouldn’t hear from him until at least Monday. Although I was disappointed and felt disregarded.

He told me I should start wearing plugs to prepare for him. So even though I didn’t hear from him, I was still obedient and went to the store to purchase a couple of graduated plugs but I didn’t Wear them that weekend. I Missed his attention and figured if he wants me to stick something up my ass for him, I require encouragement.

We were discussing erotica and I mentioned my favorite collection of poems by Richard Siken. As I began to reread it and share with him, I was inspired and wrote this in the back of the book:

He hasn’t earned anything
Not the pictures, not my trust
But I give it to him anyway
After a ‘no’ so firm with everyone else
I hand it all over to him
Like a burden, like a grenade
That I’m relieved to be rid of

He said he liked it. I think to myself, it doesn’t matter whether he did or didn’t.

3 days, I watch as his message string moves further and further then disappears down the line.

I cheered when the opposing team beat his. One because I love underdogs and two, because I was hoping it put a damper on wherever he went that he had gone to forget me.

Because it’s all about me, of course.

And then he reappeared as I expected with plausible or made up excuses, it doesn’t matter.

You said you missed me and I laughed, don’t toy with my emotions. I was sincerely worried by the time 48 rolled into 72. I have no illusions of romance or friendship but he should have been more considerate.

I wish I had worn my plug to dress rehearsal. It was stressful and I could have used a psychological anchor. Something to keep our upcoming play time at the front of my lobe and give me something to look forward to like a kid weeks before Christmas.

You say the most romantic things. Like: I’ll shove it in one of your holes or I’m waxing my rope for you. You sent me a picture of the rope and you were wearing blue plastic gloves while you worked. I said, oh baby, leave the gloves on. Those gloves scream “I’ve got a shovel and a bag of lime in my trunk.”

You think I’m funny. I know I am. You also crave my Beyonce sized ass painted red by your hand. You’ve already seen me, what I have to offer top to bottom and you still want it. Your reaction is encouraging. Especially at a time when my physical body is out of control and I starve and punish it with more activities that it can handle. The punishment you offer will be sweeter. Funishment you call it. I said I’d use that, and I also said I’d give you credit for it.

You asked me how my day went at work and I told you. We lost guys in a fire fight. And in the midst of it, people around me were bitching about what playlist to listen to on YouTube, their favorite sports team or wishing how they were outside on the water on this gorgeous day rather than here… But I was holding my breath for the release of the names of killed. He didn’t respond. He understands but he’s not my friend. It honestly makes me wonder what we will even talk about when we do meet in person if we can’t get too personal.

Separately but not completely unrelated, one of my cabaret ladies is starting to write again. She’s fearless and so I don’t think she would mind me sharing her blog with you, whoever YOU are, if there is even anyone on the other end of this line…

https://marlowemoore.wordpress.com/

Reading her stuff makes me mildly ashamed of my own. I know we shouldn’t compare something as intimate as writing but hers does not read like a bitching teenager’s diary. I could write better, I tell myself, if I took the time to proofread and edit. Or maybe, just as with my dancing or singing or acting or whatever else artsy farts that I throw myself into, maybe my writing is just as “okay”.

Unremarkable. The occasional a-ha or punchline but overall, long-winded and unfocused. So thank you if you made it this far.

“Fucking around and falling in love” Angel Olsen

The duvet slips away from my shoulders, exposing breasts, nipples tighten under the cool air. I long for an extra pair of arms and lips at times like these, company in my bed.

My mother remarked on how handsome M is. She asked if he was single and I said “yes but he is emotionally unavailable” and I laughed. I don’t know if that’s even remotely true but it’s easier to say out loud than “I don’t believe he’s interested in me.”

Even as I had a successful date last week with an attractive, younger man. I say “successful” because he showed up. That is half the battle, isn’t it? Affectionate and attentive, I doubt we have enough in common to pursue anything but I enjoyed his company. But I haven’t reached out to him since. He’s not “the one” so I’m not motivated to make an effort.

And I stopped texting M. His disinterest depresses me.

I have an argument for leaving tags on bras. Women generally remove the tags from all our garments but considering how hard is otto find a good bra, I’d like to know what style, size and brand it is to replace it when it wears out.

A dancer friend of mine invited me to come out and see a jazz band. Assuming because he is a dancer friend that it was a jazz conducive of dancing. Instead it was the jazz I hate. That contemporary jazz that sounds like everyone is doing a solo. And I catch myself staring the entire time staring at the drummer’s fruit stripe .socks to avoid watching the musicians on stage make bedroom eyes at each other. Another thing that irks me about jazz, watching men circle jerk each other onstage with instruments. Happy to be thought of but that was 4 captive hours, $40 and 100 miles I’ll never get back.

I chuckle at the public service announcements around the building where I work. Warnings like “Spying doesn’t pay” and beware the disgruntled employee, they could be an insider threat. Hell, might as well report everyone in this line of work then.

App dating: If he writes nothing in his profile I automatically think he’s lazy and swipe left. If he writes “just ask” in his bio, he might as well have not written anything at all and I swipe left. Although I think guys are starting to get the hint about fish pictures. I haven’t seen as many shirtless shitter shots as in years past but they are still a thing. As I’m clicking through, an “Eeww!” escapes my lips every time a SSS pops up. Doesn’t emmatter if it’s a dude with 20 pack abs or Larry the Cable Guy in his third trimester of beer gut. Same reaction.

I catch up on blogger I’ve been following for 10 years. Has it really been 10 years? 10 years since I’ve been blogging too. He’s only gotten more vulgar, I think. Pushing the envelope until there’s nothing left to push it seems. But is he really getting more vulgar or a have I become my mother, growing increasingly conservative as I get older, my mind shrinking like my spine with age.

I was a little too content in my decision to drop all my cabaret girls from Facebook. Oh, we could still communicate on the private page and they might not even notice that I dropped them. I even hoped they would notice and ask so we could open the door to that conversation like a teenager wishing someone would find her diary and say “I’m sorry, I didn’t know”.

I would tell them: You judged me. You all did. And you attacked me when I was down. And I felt like an outsider in the group ever since. However, I have a lot of sequins so I have no intention of quitting. But I don’t need social media reminding me just how few real friends I have.

I was also too content to use the excuse that traffic delayed me getting home, making it so that I wouldn’t get to the last acrobatics class on time. So I poured a stale mug of wine purposely into my “Blessed.” mug and settled down to two heaping servings of leftover whole wheat pasta. Carbs and more carbs. Comforting. And inflammatory as well as constipating so dessert I figure should be a protein mug cake with an ex lax ganache.

Then I should take a selfie while surrounded by my pets with the caption “I’d love to but I’m busy”.

“My Lucifer is lonely” Billie Eilish

The song has nothing to do with this blog, it’s just what I woke up with in my head. Moving on to the unsexy subject at hand. Diet. Or as some folks prefer to call it “way of eating”. I get the negative connotations of the word diet but my mouth is too lazy to say ‘way of eating’. I save my energy for more important things, like…eating.

I didn’t lose weight on keto but I didn’t gain either. And looking back at when the most recent weight gain began again, it was clearly last December, which is when I fell off the keto wagon and didn’t bother climbing back on. Other hot diets such as paleo or “intuitive eating” somehow justified my renewed craving for carbs in which I began indulging in again in the “healthy” forms of live grain bread and gluten free pasta. I wasn’t eating crap every day but it was definitely more than the once-a-week cheat I allowed myself before. Plus I was ignoring my daily carb intake and inhaling snacks of gluten-free crackers, pretzels and of course my weakness, tortilla chips.

I’ve gained so much that I haven’t weighed myself in a year. Although my clothes, jumping from a 10 to a 14/16 tell the truth.

From the outside looking in, my diet still looks relatively healthy but I know I can’t eat like this and still feel or look good. Although reading blogs from other people with hypothyroid, hashimoto’s, multiple endocrine neoplasia and other endocrine and autoimmune disorders, the path seems to point to keto. Except they also want you to give up soy (check), gluten (check), dairy (ummm…), Coffee (I’m outta here…)

But I did keto for almost two years and although I was gravely disappointed to never experience that weight “flush” that folks with properly functioning endocrine systems enjoyed, I wasn’t carrying around a hashi’s baby in my gut that never came to term like I am now (that’s extreme bloat by the way).

I take a inventory of my current kitchen. bags of crackers, triscuits, leftover cheat pizza in the freezer, and then there’s the 3lb bag of sour gummy bears guiltily staring me in the face that I bought when I was crashing and craving on recent overnight shifts at work. Okay, maybe I have lost control. Maybe it’s time to rein it back in. So I’ll give the gummies to my co-workers and round up the triscuits and pretzel crisps and donate them to my family (even though they shouldn’t be eating them either, there is no way in hell they are giving up carbs). The pizza I will probably finish off in a last hurrah because I can’t throw out pizza anymore than I can’t bring myself to throughout Pizza any more than I can throw out hundred dollar bills. The tortilla chips I will keep but I will go back to counting them out in a bowl, 12, before indulging.

If I start this week, just maybe I can squeeze back into my sequins by our December show. It would be the one-year mark from the last time I could button up my jazz vest. That’ll be my goal.

“Touch me again and I’ll drown you, you bastard” Mrs. Doubtfire

Got an email today from one of my cabaret ladies that upset me to the point of ruin. I think we managed to hash it out but it’s still clings to me. When did I become the bitch that nobody likes? Most of my life I was a people pleaser, how can I help? That burden looks heavy, here let me carry that for you… And then a few years ago I realized but the people I thought where my friends at the time absolutely drained me and couldn’t even remember my birthday even when we shared it. The birthday is not important but the fact that it was a one-sided relationship. I had a lot of friends but when I took inventory of who would step up in my time of need should I need anyone, my answer was crickets. So I began doing things by myself and for myself. Now I have a small cultivated, tolerant handful of friends. I’m not mean. I just put myself first more than I used to.

But this email made me realize that the alienation I’ve been feeling was not entirely in my head. People were put off by my sullen attitude but rather than asking what was wrong, and I may or may not have admitted to anything, they just kept letting it rub them the wrong way until I was alone in a corner at rehearsals and the last show. Again, I think with a bit of communication on all of our parts, we can get past this but it still ruined my day.

No, more than ruined my day. Left me sick to my stomach wondering if I should quit. Maybe they wanted me to. Maybe everyone would breathe a little easier if I tapped out. I was going down that rabbit hole. And of all people, Robin Williams popped into my head. Now aside from the clinical depression, I don’t for a minute draw a personal comparison to the humor and talent that man had but my point is, here is a man who is successful, and beloved by most of the world. And he killed himself. We assume often I think that someone kills themself because they are lonely. True, it’s difficult to connect. But I think there is an irrational voice that tries to convince us not only that we are not loved but worse, we are not LIKED.

It’s difficult when you feel like you have no one close enough to talk to, and if you did they wouldn’t understand, or there are certain aspects of your job and the day to day war that you can’t discuss. I met with my VA psychiatrist for a biannual follow up a couple of months ago right after C was killed and she asked if I needed to speak to someone and I combusted and nodded. She said she would put in a referral to the social worker. That was two months ago and I’ve heard nothing. But I even suspect the VA social worker is too burned out to give a damn about my problems. And I’m probably not high-risk enough to warrant a speedy appointment. But really, I don’t want to talk to someone that I feel can’t relate. Or worse, doesn’t LIKE me.

Back to war tomorrow. Next weekend I will be punishing my body in an attempt to heal my spirit hiking a few days around the Cascades. I’ll be with retired Army and retired Marines. And there probably won’t be a single war story between us. I’m looking forward to it.

“My heart belongs to da da da da da da da…” Peggy Lee

I can go decades without watching television but while recovering from parathyroid surgery a few years ago, I steamrolled through all seasons of Downton Abbey. Now with a broken foot, I’m hooked on Derry Girls on Netflix. Not only do I love the nostalgic soundtrack of being a teenager in the 90s, it delivers one-liner after one liner without feeling forced. And Im sure I’ve already mentioned that I don’t think much is funny since John Candy passed. “Erin” has an elastic face that reminds me of Jim Carrey (who I also don’t think is funny but his face is impressive the way it pulls and peels from one ridiculous expression to another). Resting, “Erin” is an ordinary looking girl until her lips peel back, eyes bug, and nose turns up. And I’m cracking up while also thinking “Good God girl, put that thing away!”

Less than two weeks until our next cabaret show, the one Ive secretly dubbed the “Boring show”. So boring that I couldn’t even come up with a better nickname than “the boring show”. I’m already missing the Halloween show part of me I wondered if I should just miss this one too. Because of my foot, they’ve left me out of almost every number. I suppose I can’t fault them for that even though it would be relatively simple for them to put me back in if MRI results come back positive. But the set list is very tame. Almost strictly Broadway. The fantastic, complicated and inappropriate crowd pleasers are not in the set list.

So I’m agonizing even more so than usual over carefully selecting my solo singing numbers. I’ve decided to try my hand at channeling Grace Slick while our contortionist gets weird. But the other number, I have no one to assist. Considering the placement of it being the last number before intermission, “Why don’t you do right” aka the Jessica rabbit “Get me some money too” song seems perfect to one of the girls come out and dance around while passing the tip hat. I was told firmly that no one was available. So then I considered Peggy Lee “Fever”. I don’t particularly like it plus it’s more played out than Greenday on commercial radio but I also know for a fact that the girls love the song and would like to sooner rather than later work a routine around it. So maybe I just sing it and give them a taste of what it would sound like with me versus a canned track. But then Peggy Lee’s version of “My heart belongs to Daddy” played. The syncopation reminded me of Copacabana and I was instinctively choreographing it in my head. Yeah, I could nail this one without any backup.

So I asked a few friends who are coming to the show for their opinion. Out of the three songs, which did they prefer to hear? Unanimously, they all chose Greenday (I mean “Fever”). I wonder if this is what bands feel like every time someone in the audience yells out “Play Freebird!”

“If you can’t hold on, hold on” ~The Killers

I told my family I loved and appreciated them. I don’t say it enough even
though they occupy the first row of my mind. I’m nearly 43 and my mother
still covers me with a blanket. I fear the day she’s no longer here. I’ll be
alone and that’s a fact.
Last night, I was dry-eyed as I moved a few pictures of “C” to a folder
where they would be out of sight but not deleted. Even the picture of the
apple and honey as he observed Yom Kippur with me long distance.
I’m compartmentalizing, I think.
Although as I nurse my forsaken body from a the most punishing training in
years, the grief creeps into the stillness. Of all feelings, there is an
intense loneliness that I havent felt in years. Back when I used to think I
would die alone and cry myself to sleep barricaded by pillows at night.
Well, I still believe I will die alone but I had reached a space where I was
okay with that. Now, I’m back to wishing I had someone that I could call
just to come over and “distract” me for an hour or two. Take the edge off.
Touch me. But it can’t be just anyone. Who do I even want? Who even wants
me? Both faces are necessary to make a coin so I’m flat broke as ever.
Thirteen days, I’ll be another year older and had plans to again, again, to summit
mountains. One of my few friends will be with me this time and as honest as
we have always been with each other, I’m afraid he will mistake my
loneliness as an invitation. I don’t know if I’m physically capable of doing
10+ miles a day on a mountain right now with my knees and feet swollen and
taped. I don’t know if I’m up for conversation either.
During a round of acupuncture at a community clinic, I watched him through
my eyelashes: former Cavalry, Afghanistan vet, a humanitarian, a healer,
married with two kids. Two fat tears leaked out and I was grateful for the
darkness. All the good ones are gone. Or their dick doesn’t work.
Or they didn’t pick me.
That’s something my mother gently reminded me of. Maybe that’s not THE point
she was trying to make as the only person I’ve discussed the death of “C”
with. But that was my take-away and maybe what helps me cope when the image
of him unstaring, with a bullet hole in his head comes unbidden to mind.
“You offered him a better life, and he didn’t take it,” she said. Reminding
me, he didn’t choose me. If I hadnt completely moved on, I must now. That
business will have to remain unfinished. It was finished to him. I thought I
could “save” him but he didn’t want to be saved. How often do we do that to
ourselves? Cling, thinking we will be the unshakeable force of change in
someone’s life?
And I’m back to wondering if G-d exists, if there is a “plan”, if I have a
“purpose”, if I will die alone…

Later. X-rays confirm one of my feet is broken. Mountaineering is off. Well, postponed until September. I ate the plane tickets. I’ll be at work on my birthday but the worst part is my coping mechanism, dancing, is off the table for six to eight weeks.

“C”

I didn’t hear it from a personal source. No, I learned about it at work, in
detail. More detail than his family will see or know.
Sure, he told me he and his wife were separated, that they were getting a
divorce, that she was already seeing other people…he used to show me her
insane emails and texts and photos of the bruises and scratches she would
leave on him…I got a firsthand taste of her crazy when she found out about
us. But it doesn’t matter if she was nuts or if he lied about the separation
or how many girlfriends he had during his three marriages…none of that
matters because I loved him and it’s hard for me to call it a mistake.
Although it was the first and last time I ever got involved with a married
man. Every day, I drive by a road that bears his name and my eyes are always drawn to it. 
And now he’s dead. Shot in the head by an enemy sniper on a night raid in Afghanistan.
Obviously, because of the circumstances of our relationship, I can’t show up
at the funeral. His kids never met me and his still-current wife
would very likely attack me. And I’ve disrespected her enough already for my part in the affair. So with exception of messaging my mom and my three closest friends who knew what he meant to me, I’ll bear this alone. I
read an article in which his second wife gave a beautiful testimony. I’ll
keep it. 
Unsure about the necklace though. The twisted pearl he gave me for Christmas four years ago. I often thought about dropping it into the ocean, but couldn’t ever bring myself to do it. Holding on, like a charm that might
bring him back to me. It didn’t and now it never will. 
He was my Lightning Strike.  He was everything I desired in a man. Perhaps I was blinded by the chemistry which was unlike anything I’ve ever felt with anyone else. The way he would look at me, unapologetic. We were confidants and compatriots in arms before we were ever lovers. Sitting outside in the darkness watching for incoming rockets like shooting stars. He set the bar by which every man after him failed to hurdle.

Even so, I found the strength to break it off, telling him I was not the
“mistress type” and sneaking around and never meeting his kids was a reminder that I was indeed, doing something “wrong”. I hoped he’d follow through with a divorce and reach back out to me eventually but he never did. Although “C” once told me I was better to and for him than anyone
in his life ever had been, in the years that followed, I thought of him often and never heard from him. So maybe I was the only one between us that cared beyond the moment.
Maybe now I should bury that necklace, the same as they bury him. 
I’m oscillating between dazed indifference and involuntary bursts of tears.
I think of him, naked and shining, climbing atop the furniture in his room,
catching ladybugs and releasing them outside…