Wednesday, March 24, 2010

First Kiss Writing

It’s a feeling that’s nearly physical but not quite so. Okay, if you ever smoked and tried to quit it’s like having quit smoking for an hour or two, that feeling you get when you’ve skipped your first smoke break in the morning. Hmmm, not quite there yet, no, that isn’t it. It’s like that feeling you have when you’re with someone new, and she’s a woman you really like and she really likes you. You’re alone together and then you realize this isn’t just making out; the two of you are going to go past that point entirely. You can’t rush it or you’ll ruin it. You can’t come right out and describe what is going to happen because this is unexplored territory between you and your soon to be new lover. You just know something magical and good is going to happen and you just want everything to be right.
Yeah, that’s it.

When someone asks me what I’m going to write they are usually surprised when I say I have no idea. Really, I have no idea. In fact, right now there is something inside my head, waiting to form into an idea to write about, but it has no substance. It’s like when you’re walking down the street with that woman you just met, and you really like this woman, and this woman really likes you, and you both stop in front of the front window of the art gallery to look at a painting there. Neither of you said anything about stopping, and neither of you really noticed you both stopped at the same time, but suddenly your hands meet, and clasp, and for the first time you’re holding hands, and it would be totally bizarre if either of you said, “This is the first step towards us having a relationship that is going to last for the next year or so.”
It’s like that. Writing ideas are indefinable at first. I knew when I down to write this essay I wanted to write about that idea that is floating around in my head somewhere, no, not this idea, there is another but I’m just flirting with it right now, not even holding hands yet.
You go into the gallery to look at more paintings, and that weird looking sculpture that you both make fun of and you toss into the open the first sexual innuendo. “It looks like an octopus having sex with a mop” you say this and the new woman laughs, and you both giggle a little about the poses the octopus and the mop might get into. You are still holding hands and even though the gallery is spacious, you both stand crowded to one another, letting your arms get to know one another, trading comfortable collisions of hips and smelling each other up close for the first time.
There where this essay is now; I like this one a lot, suddenly, and it seems to be a keeper. It is difficult to tell when a few paragraphs are going to dead in on you, like a date that blurts out there is a herpes problem, or someone who announces they think dogs are good to eat or they once was a Satanist who converted to Independent Southern Baptist because the food was better. But the unformed idea hasn’t gotten to the point of hand holding yet, even if this one, who was born of trying to describe the other thought, has moved forward.

The guy who owes the Gallery you and your soon to be new lover comes to speak to you, and both of you wish him to go away, but you feel obligated to be civil to him, and so does she. After all, you want to impress upon her you’re a nice person, don’t you? But after a few moments of nether of you really taking your eyes off each other, he suggests you might want to wander upstairs, it’s not really open to the public, but there are some very nice paintings there. They aren’t going to be shown yet, and a few need a little work, but, yes, behind that door is a stairway, yes, it’s perfectly fine. So you hold her hand up the steep stairs and you both feel like kids again, and there are truly wonder works of art there, and everything is truly wonderful at this moment in time. You suddenly wonder if you should kiss her, and you wonder if it’s too soon, and worst of all, the guy thing kicks in and you wonder if she will have sex with you right here on the spot, and as you look at her, it scares you to think you might totally screw this up from the beginning. You can hear her telling a friend, “…oh dear god he groped me right there in the art gallery…” But the kiss thought is still with you, overwhelming you, and she turns to look at you, because you’ve grown silent, and then you are kissing her, and she is leaning into you, and kissing you back hard, like she was waiting and waiting, and it is just so fucking good. That’s writing.

That’s right now, for this essay, the first kiss part, and I’m thinking it’s good. It’s when you really wanted to make a point, or draw some comparison and suddenly you’ve said what you wanted to say, and it’s where you want to be with it. Anyone who has ever kissed someone new knows this, especially if it was someone special, and if you write, and know this, when something you write is good, and it speaks to you. It’s the same feeling, but without the weirdness when the gallery owner coughs and you realize he’s been there longer than you thought.

The one day, a year later, the woman who has been your lover for a while now comes home after a bachelorette party and she falls into the door laughing hysterically and she tell you that she kissed the male stripper. She pukes on the sofa then falls on top of it, and she curses the day she met you as you’re trying to get her hosed down in the shower. Now her nudity doesn’t mean what it did a year ago, and you realize you are going to be late for work tomorrow because of this, but you have to take care of her because even after this, you do still love her.
That’s editing.
Take Care,
Mike

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