I Know You Got Something Funny But You – Lily Bix Daw

We keep having the same dream about licking each others mouths in a grocery store surrounded by unarmed toy soldiers.

I’m like what the fuck you on. Can I please bite you on your pretty little. No way man. I know you got something funny but you’re young still I know. You got something funny but you’re young still. You were saying that I’m not real. We keep having the same dream

People around here don’t lock their doors. The man at the gas station said a good dress shows off the promise of salvation, the torments of hell, and the existence of tits. When he said that, I knew he was literalizing, and not moralizing their shape. When we met again, he was sitting next to me at the bar in a cheap suit which hung off him like loose skin. Skin which was a new color I’d never seen before, a desaturated putty grey. He told me that he’d lost 31 pounds in 90 days, because of desire. He was trying to lose 19 more. Desire is the best motivator, he said.

And then after a little while I could hear the sound of water hitting the linoleum and I realized my chair was actually a portable commode frame, without the plastic tub part in it. and that my leggings and underwear were pulled halfway down my thighs and I guess I had pissed on the floor a little. I did everything right and nothing wrong and I was going to receive everything that I had coming to me. I followed his instructions to a T but still felt fucked. 
        Later when it was over I was walking through halls feeling lonely and noticed the sky had dropped and it was raining. I left through the side door and out down some steps, it being dark out, and closing in. It felt so intimate, so zipped up, from the drone of it all. To my left was a vast dark space. It was being illuminated by the frequent lightning, big strobe flashes. That’s how I realized how expansive it was, recognizing the division of ground and sky and  then I realized its surface was pitted like water, the ocean, maybe it is, and it was.   It was. Really pouring now but the pitch black shiny water is so beautiful and I realize I should swim in it. in the dark. I put my bag and my clothes on a flower bed by the school steps and before I can pad down to the edge through the plastic sand I’m noticing something crablike crawling toward the water. It may have been crawling out
        It was hard but soft, beautiful edges like exquisitely pulled glass. I picked it up and it pinched me with its claws and cut part of my thumbnail off. I dropped it a short distance, only a few feet, but instantly it disintegrated into a swarm of writhing pieces. It lay there, shifting on the sand, different pieces stretching and reaching out to each other and singing.  I was sad, believing I had destroyed it in the way that bees die after stinging in self defense. And something about its fragmentary parts still moving, reassembling almost, made me uneasy. They were looking to go somewhere, and they looked so familiar. 
        I hurried away, realizing I might have something in me too. She had softened them with her body before carefully laying them in me like branches or making a bed. Who knows what they were originally, they could have grown or altered since the exchange, since passing through her- living inside hers first and then inside mine.  Transferred through the amniotic fluid even like other fun toxins. I got my own shapes inside me but they talk to me more.
         I always used to like those moments when my body would start to turn, my hands move my face and back up my life. Yours is so wide I can see right through to your battered brain. It’s sweet and savory and a little bit salty. He is hung, inside the entire world and reflected back at us . . This is very beautiful to some people, maybe you. I rolled over on the kitten in bed and it stopped breathing.  

It’s such a beautiful day. And she was such a beautiful girl. I’ll turn my head to the left and notice the smell growing stronger. I’ll carry my gaze evenly across the thicketed horizon, holding my gaze steady and immobile on my neck. I’ll see it on the forest floor just over there, shoulder blade roughly parallel with its head, understand it still as when it struck the ground. Dark like boiled wool, but with a slight sheen from the morning condensation. I won’t go any closer. I can know if it’s she. I can slowly and carefully walk back home, the smell of her receding as the meadow comes into view. The morning sunlight reports the grass is warming up. But I won’t tell anyone.  It was the bear that breathed behind her every night.
        When my limbs get longer, the cars grow intolerable human faces, spiky and more multifaceted than ever. But reducible still.
        I remember when it started, at a time when the culture was saturated with allusions to Falls- from Grace or power or whatever. Everyone was writing extinction fiction and eventually it started to rot and smell bad and release gases and bloat. Someone could tell we should relieve the pressure, or at least back away from the impending explosion. But people weren’t listening anymore so their hearing organs did that evolutionary lip service thing where they just become vestigial cavities. Someone invented a game, involving long cylindrical shaped instruments that they used for inserting into other people’s ears. When they did this, something happened. But they didn’t stop when whatever it was fell out, they kept going. It lay all frothy and new on the ground until the rotting and ripening started. I got my period in the parking lot picking up those commas.
        When I become perfect at night, I have the same dream each morning after:
        I go into the woods to find a bear that looks like my mother. This bear is easy to kill,  because it not only looks like my mother, it behaves like her too, and my mother loves me.   I shoot the bear and skin it. The skin peels off so easily, like an irregular tomato boiled and cooled. Its body bleeds little. Pink and smaller without its skin. 
        Returning to the parking lot ritual.  puncturing and receiving ad infinitum. I begin gathering the spume at their feet, but their words are young and rancid. inside the bearskin, forced to be touching, I say I’m sorry, but this is the end of the world, this is the breath behind you at night.
        The skin takes it all up, takes it good just like that and swells so big the people fucking in the parking lot are forced to stop. And when you breathe in and hold it you must eventually let it out.
        They didn’t have any, only holes. The other kinds of people didn’t have holes, but instead long cylindrical shaped instruments that they used to insert into the other people’s holes. When they did this, the writing happened. But they didn’t stop when the new things slipped out,  they kept going. It lay all frothy and sensitive and fresh on the ground until the rotting and ripening started, quickening.

So I have them too, but they got soft and part of my body more. now my body is other shapes and other people and they told me about the king- about how I could see it, answers the question Who whispered that in my ear when I walked down the road that morning?
        When I left, the water was dripping down the stone, turning it wet and blacker than coal. It’s a beautiful thing, but it’s never a beautiful feeling. I always lock the door.

It was freezing in the apartment, and to stay warm we lay back to back, I felt contained within a doorway pressing outwards against the frame. I had a dream that night, in which you returned, nicely tanned, smelling of a deep crawlspace with a hot animal inside. I smelled crisp discs of glass just behind my eyes. On a piss-stained lawn I saw a money bush shedding dollars, which I, skinny and wet, ran to collect, and below that an apple tree bearing balls of bleached hair instead of fruit. Someone spilled the contents of a bucket, a mixture of newly rehydrated clay.  I had fallen up on the concrete where the slurry was pooling, a skid of my knee skin still there. And it does it with the cold metallic hose water, then goes into the warm strawberry patch, and mixes with the shit. And the people did unto it too, eventually, one after another like bad topiary. The bushes set fire to themselves and the smoke disappeared through a hole in my right eye.  When I woke, I was feeling, it was simple, meaninglessly dark, there was nothing but blue phosphenes lingering in my vision, and there was nothing, I was feeling, feeling so like women, it was cut perfectly through it was cleaved shaven bald and clean.