Monthly Archives: November 2011

eyes. They were blue

It was a grand hall with large white pillars towering high above to hold the paintings firmly in the sky. Decorated with three thirty foot white angels in the center garden square surrounded by large ceramic snow flakes suspended by silver strands of tinsel. Men in black suits talked amicably in the corner, while women ran about laughing with winter masquerade masks and flowing dresses. I had arrived to this party, full of classmates from high school, with a good friend. He soon diverged and got lost in his world of thoughts and bitterness. I decided it was well time for me to leave. I wasn’t interested in hanging out with people from ten years ago. Going toward the front doors I see a young man dressed in a silver vest, and all in white. He looks at me just as I am to walk by before he lowers his drink, and stops me. Intrinsically handsome I pause to speak briefly to him.

“I was just heading out, buddy,” I say.

“Oh, that’s too bad. I’m here with Liz,” he responded. The look on his face was that of dissatisfaction.

“I love Liz!” His face, eyes, hair, mouth, nose, every detail staining my memory. The sound of the brass band playing muffled into a simple background. The glittering ballroom couldn’t deflect my attention, I was solely interested in him.

“Me too! I’d love it if you’d stay,” he asked. I couldn’t resist. I knew this man was someone I should be talking to.

“Okay,” I now found a reason to stay. “But please excuse me. I’m heading outside to smoke.” As I head out, there are people being searched. A small blue hallway leads to the front door. Small rooms unlit and blackened with the feeling that was quickly approaching loomed off to the side.

“Sir,” An officer motions me over to him.

“Are you serious?” I ask. “I’m only going out for a cigarette, is this gonna happen again when I try to come in?” He’s already felt everywhere and seems like he really wants to check the crotch of my pants. He motions for another man to come over. This man is carrying three small cups.

“Okay sir, we’re going to need your fingerprints, urine sample, blood sample, and semen sample.” While fingerprinting me, the doctor jams a needle into the back of my arm as blood spurts into the small tube. Arms take me into the dark room, where the other two samples are collected. Upon redeeming them I see the man label me as “300.”

Heading out the front doors there are only a few people standing out there. I still feel awkward from being frisked and giving samples. I can’t figure out why they needed these items. Leave it to me for not asking why. I flash my lighter to ignite my cigarette and see the Marines at the camp in drill practice. They march off of the field while the football team begins. Even this is a well orchestrated production. The defensive team on the right gets ready to accept the offense. Through a method of orchestrated grunts the man up front stops, slowly walks to the right while two others a bit further back stand their ground. The offense runs clear into the center of the triangle formed. The three guys turn towards them in an about face fashion to tackle the entire offensive!

Next they quickly assemble and intercept a field goal, by flipping the third high into the hair while he catches the ball. Great production, but I am done with my cigarette so I have to go back in. I am not frisked but I walk back to where I left my friend. He moved into a smaller room which was dimly lit. A table set with banquet food stood along the far wall. It was untouched and had candles scattered about the food.

A smile quickly spreads across my face. I am happy to see that he waited. No longer taking in the crowds about me into thought I walk closer to him. He meets me, we stare into each others eyes. They were blue. Everything about his appearance was wintery. Yet he was warm, dynamic, and severe. He smiles that smile. A smile that says, I can’t believe this is happenening. Slightly taller than I he leans in for a kiss. It was marvelous. It was quick. It was lasting.

I’m now driving my car with a beautiful girl in the passenger seat. We take the exit from the highway. A kid at the center circle managed to block the fountain, so the pressure builds and fills the windshield with water. I scream, while she laughs at me. I hate it, but I love her. We get back to where the ball is. It took a while due to the fact that it was on a military base. We go to walk in but I sit at a fountain. She’s dancing with arms spread wide. She’s making circles, she’s in love. She’s in love with me. I put my head in my hands. I love her too. I see myself sitting there. An image of despair. I come back and look up. Now I am sitting in a fine living room. The young man across from me is a few years older than I. He’s handsome with blue eyes that I know. His hair is darker.

“You can’t do this,” he says to me. He looks concerned. I only look back at him. I turn and the young man from earlier is only looking at me. I look to my left, and she’s looking at me.

“You can’t be in love with my brother and my sister.” The words don’t seem odd or out of place. He continues to talk but I am no longer listening. I’m thinking on our time spent between the two of them. I finally look back at their brother, and he has changed. Now it is a tan man. He has dark hair, glasses, and green eyes. A thin jaw much like his brother’s that I’ve fallen for. It’s the oldest brother.

“You have to choose.” he says. The words get through, but he continues to talk. I am no longer listening because I’m weighing it all. She feels good because I finally feel a sense of normal. She’s beautiful. She want’s the same things that I want.

I think of him. He feel’s right. He, I feel static and electric. I know he truly cares about me, all encompassing. I think back to her. I know that I will only eventually leave her for a man anyway. I’m gay. I get distracted and think about the final Harry Potter movie.

Suddenly his face burns in my mind once more, but we’re now on a steel bridge. The steel supports rise above and over us as a cage. There are many people here. Everyone is on the ground. Maybe drugged. I look up and see an oversized slithering salamander climbing down towards us. His tail is long and purple. It has a mace on the end. It see’s the girl next to me and like a frog launches it’s tongue at her. She quickly grabs hold of it and rips it out relatively easily. As we begin to look around we notice that there are more coming. We stumble to our feet as they approach. At the other end of the bridge the salamanders are making out great as they eat humans with one latching swipe of their tongue. Dazed, this girl and I stand just as another salamander tries his tongue at her. She grips it, rips it and the salamander falls off the edge of the bridge. Around us more people are drugged but still moving. We run inside, where I happen upon trays and trays of cups labeled. I step back quickly and find the ones labeled “300.” Only taking a second to destroy the fear of what might happen if I steal these, I see my semen and I know that this was not a normal thing. This was some other craziness. The others that gave the same were all out there being destroyed. I grabbed every sample and quickly dumped them down the toilet. I finally run out to my safety, but I wake before I ever make it.


On a Very Different Path

A month and a week has passed now. A month and a week from the time my ties were severed to the greatest relationship I have known. With this separation amidst all of the feelings of aggravation, fear, and hurt; I was able to begin searching for a self that was greater than I had known before. Searching for ways to cope. Something to make me feel better. I couldn’t write in my despair. Nor could I retain enough focus to read. Even this post will be something of almost illegible fashion. I feel the need to write. I must get back to feeling myself. Like I’m contributing. Like I have purpose.

I have had many instances of literary genius in this time. Yet it can’t be counted as literary genius if it never made it to paper. Time swirls past me much like the leaves do now as I jog in the morning. That’s been a good start. I jog now. It’s been five consecutive days, and I feel great.

My job is what I had been getting up for in the mornings. The morning of the past three years. When the love is gone, yet you keep going for the comfort of it, you need something to get you up in the morning. My job has always been the thing that has inspired me. My muse, if you will. I now read over the last two sentences and laugh. I laugh at how my life could have been formed to swirl solely among and around a restaurant. Writing has been my passion. Something that I love to do. Some may say I am horrible at it. If this is the first or the last thing they ever read from me, I may have no choice to agree. My rhythm is off. Short sentences to long almost run on sentences. Stream of consciousness then well thought out prose.

What if I pick it all up and go? San Diego. She looks like a beautiful place to go. I believe that there are many signs wishing me to go there as well. The second I began thinking about it even the most random of people would tell me their son was driving out there. Or someone just got a job out there. Or “my God, I wish I was in San Diego.” Random conversations from guests. Then I log onto Craigslist and my location is randomly set at, you guessed it; San Diego.

I will admit, it couldn’t happen as quickly as I would like it to. I have debts here that I need to settle before I can go. I also have a big book release coming up that I absolutely must do here.

The best moment of my turn around was when I was telling a new found friend good bye. We hugged and I kissed him on the cheek, like I do with all of my friends. He kissed my cheek. I went to back out of the hug when our lips met. It was quick, brief, and releasing. My first instinct was to feel guilty, but the moment I knew i didn’t feel that way I was emancipated from the horrid feeling of not getting over it. Thank you friend.

Thank you for reading this. Whether you made it through all the way or not!

Caleb A. Mertz