A Building Burning

3 Aug

I look strong. And I am, I guess. My Pa says I’m strong as an ox. I used to carry kegs up a decaying set of stairs, when I was a bartender in college. I have a big, ripe body that I love. You can’t knock me over.

Lately, though, I feel like one of those big, sad-eyed paintings. Completely new to and baffled by the world. I take things quite literally, like the Terminator or very small children. I am slower to pick up on jokes but I am quick to blush. I am shamefully earnest. I get confused by other people’s anger, confused when they say one thing but then do something else on purpose.

I am coming off such a grim, unreachable place in my life where I didn’t have the space for feelings. I was efficient and indifferent but I wasn’t, like, connecting to anything or anyone. I feel completely plugged into the world, very aware of the precarious and fucking weird condition that is being human. My feelings get hurt and that always seems to be such a mess. I expect things of people that I didn’t before and sometimes I am let down.

I try to stay quiet, mostly, these days because – for maybe the first time ever – I’m worried about saying the wrong thing. I keep my own secrets and study other people’s faces. I try to reconcile my rich figure and my tender heart. Soon enough, they will get along again.

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