Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Her Ghost of a Smile

She appears in my dream after waking up from a phone call from my shrink. I haven't seen her in years now—her choice, not mine.

She sits across from me, on a couch with two would-be friends of hers, and by association and extension, mine. I look to my right for a second. (My pocket-watch is nowhere to be seen or held—no lucidity occurs; the curtain and masks cover the actors and make them familiar. Does she even look like this anymore? Did she ever even exist, or was she just a figment of my masochistic imagination; an angel with a white-hot branding iron.) The two other friends are gone. Where did they go? I ask her.

They had to leave, she informs me, level-toned and without malice of forethought.

I spy her left forearm—the same spot in which I am marked with indelible ink. She has three tattoos - one of which looks a dead ringer for mine. Can I see them? I ask with immense hesitancy, fearing the worst: a forked tongue; cloven hooves; the claws only a wayward angel could bear.

She smiles—I think—maybe—and slides closer, and if I was awake I know now, writing this, I would be able to smell her, to hear the whisper of her hair sliding off her back and past her shoulders.

She draws closer, and extends her arm, and I'm so utterly magnetized that my eyes don't dart to her chest or ass like they probably would in reality. My fingers trace the outlines of the lines on her arm, now faded but remembered as kin to my own. I think I ask her when and/or where she got them. I don't remember if she answered.

I remember the ghost of the smile she wore, though. And waking, it haunts me—haunts me from years I thought remained in the fossil-records of my social extinction.