I decided to go ahead and buy a copy of 6S, Volume 2. It’s a hardcopy version of select six sentences stories, which I’ve been avoiding buying because, quite frankly, I thought it would be cheesy. And yet, when it came in the mail in its blue glossy cover and uncracked spine, I shivered a little to think that I am actually published in a collection of work. Along with an intro by Neil LaBute and a special six by Rick Moody, two of my sixes made it in, The Diner and Love (both reformatted below). One inspired by G, the other by S. It makes me want to buy two more copies and send them off to my old lovers with a little inscription, “See, you inspired me after all.” But really, who cares? I wrote an entire story about S and got it published locally just so that he’d see it and he never even went out and got a copy (they’re free). Whatever.
And yet, they’re both bound together in this one book- the two men that is, symbolically linked forever. Almost as if I can now say, I am closing the book on those chapters of my life.
Ok, there’s cheesiness for you.
Carmela tasted the red on her lips. When she was nervous or excited she’d bite down, puncturing the skin and cause bleeding. She remembered hearing that the Egyptians used their own blood as make-up to lure potential lovers. But, when he entered the diner where she stood taking orders at the counter, holding a hand that was not hers, she wiped at her wounded lips, took their order, and skirted through the double doors to the kitchen. “It’ll be alright, darling,” George said to her from behind the line, “we’ll spit in their soup.” And as Carmela readied the bowls, she wondered how many drops of love would pass unnoticed into the Fasolada.
We always do it missionary; you above me, staring down. Me, buried in the tattoos on your right arm. Buried between the pin-up and the Devil with a cigarette, the eight ball at my nose, the dice at my eyes. Silently, you ask me to tuck away my need for something deeper and save it for another time. Yet somewhere in between the vulgar emptiness and tired release, you always say, “I love you.” As if you knew that seeing God were not enough.