I buy notebooks, but I never fill them. It’s in me to squander their
One notebook was for drawing, but I don’t even draw. Another was for
thoughts and lies. The one I’m writing in now is just for this. When I’m
done, I’ll lose it in the produce section for someone else to find. They’ll
flip through the empty pages to find this entry. What they do with it after
is their own damn business. Maybe they’ll lose it too, like you say you lost
the taste for something you used to find delicious.
It would be my baby if it came any other way. There’s no way now. I can’t be
happy I terminated it. My culture doesn’t allow me the joy of a near miss. I
took a pill and all was forgiven.
Getting the pill was easy as buying eggs. I was given an option to buy
something that wasn’t much of a deal. I was asked to take that deal because
it was only available for a limited time. I was given a frown in case I
chose to feel bad about it later. I was given no receipt. I was pushed
gently out the door. I was asked to come again. As if I will make this
mistake again. As if I made any mistake at all. Sometimes, it’s not about
self-control. You can’t control the other self you do this with. He’s a gun
and there’s no fighting him.
He was funny, though. Even after I knew what I had to do, he made me laugh.
We joked about the funeral we’d have. We planned to gather around the toilet
and wave goodbye and sing a song. It turns out there’s not a goddamn song
for something like this.
I wish I really knew how to say this to a stranger. I don’t. That’s why I’m
writing it down. You’ll read this while you’re picking the best of the worst
apples, no soft spots. You’ll get to the end and you’ll think I’m making too
big a deal. You’ll toss this in the cake mixes and say, “Use those eggs you
bought. Make a cake and get over it.” You’ll think I don’t know what I’m
I can’t articulate it unless I’ve been drinking, but when I’ve been
drinking, I don’t have the strength for words. I just have emotions like
strong food. A flavor stings the back of my throat and I well up like I’ve
been slicing onion after onion after onion. My best friend asks me what’s
wrong, but I tell her it’s just the tequila. It does this. It gets me into
When I flush our situation, the gun isn’t around to joke about it. I try to
think of a song. I call my tequila friend, and I ask her, but she’s eating
dinner. She says, “Can’t it wait?”
I say, “No. It’s waited too long already. It’s starting to fall apart in the
water. I think I should take a picture of it before I say goodbye.”
She says, “Oh, girl, no.”
I hang up because I know that’s it. I take a picture with my cell phone. I
delete the picture before I send it to my mother. I flush. I squander. I
turn on the tap and tilt my head for a drink.
One day you’ll come through. You’ll have been filtered out, of course, but
somehow you’ll still be right there. The flavor in my throat.