Use Me

“Yes, but I think I enjoy being used.”

You know you’re being used. You’re being chewed up and eventually it’s going to burn and crash. The audible exemplification of cold reality. His words fit.

She knew. She knew, and she didn’t care.

Use me.

Use me as your receptacle for your aches and pains, leave your insecurities at my feet, find refuge in my attentions and affections. Let me love you for everything that you are, for your imperfections and pieces of you that you never let people see. Use my love until you find no more use for it. Until someone else fills the void in your soul better. Until you are bored with me. Until you have a newer and shinier plaything. Better yet, mix and match me with your other favorite playthings. I am yours alone until you will not have me.

Then, throw me away.

Why do I find comfort in this paradigm, she wondered.

Perhaps the answer lies in the security of knowing. Knowing that eventually things will end. The tumultuous waiting game; the mind bending torture of waiting for the floor to fall away beneath your feet be damned.

That moment. 

In the meantime one can take comfort in knowing an exact purpose: to be used. Security in simplicity. Serenity in certainty.

Use me.

It is easier to give love when you know precisely what one plans to do with it upon receipt. It is easier to give love when you explicitly understand that you will get nothing out of it. It is easier to give love when you know to distrust whatever is given back in return – it is a farce, a laughable attempt to shield you from the truth. It is easier to give love when you know there is nothing particularly special about your love.

She didn’t trust anyone who could pretend otherwise, as though anyone would ever plan to stay.

Because there is no question of future.

It is all inevitable. It is just a matter of time. The floor disappears. The walls melt away. You feel your stomach knotting and the world spins around you in darkness.

Until suddenly, someone new takes your hand. They need you. The spinning stops. The world begins to make sense again as you begin to invest yourself once more.

You put your head down and rebuild the walls, fixing a shelter. You find your footing as you lead them to their next path.

And you wait.

Because that moment is just one whim away.


Social Experiments

“I am my own social experiment.”

The words lingered in the space between mind and virtual existence, clinging to the form of identity and malleable intent, before dancing into the small text box on the glowing window that glimpsed into an alternate reality.

The sentinel blinked persistently, standing steadily next to the last mark, awaiting further instructions. None came.

To observe, to identify, to consume. Breathing in the essence and meaning of interaction. To wonder, to theorize, to consider every possible interpretation.

The balancing act of conscious and subconscious desire. The internal struggle to hide reality and emit something appropriate for public consumption.  The time honored battle between intense fear of betrayal and a profound desperation to be loved.

And so I watch.

I watch, I poke, I prod. I disappear. I become a fly on the wall. I stand in the spotlight. I hide in the shadows. I dance to see if others will dance. I lead to see if they will follow. I follow to see if they will lead.

Her thoughts floated into the air and journeyed to wherever such thoughts go once they have been released from captivity.

Suppressed self-expression scratching at solid walls of supposition and self-denied satisfaction. All for the dread of the unknown, the fear of failure, the horror of naked exposure, the terror that life may be entirely senseless.

Perception impregnates reality.

Good Intentions

“I meant to go grocery shopping today.”

They say the road to hell is paved with good intentions. If this was indeed true, she knew precisely where she was headed in this current trajectory.

She idly wondered whether one could find their way to heaven through bad intent.

It was curious to her that she could lay in the shivering cold, where hardly months before she had been dying to strip off every layer to rescue herself from the sweltering heat. The windows were fogged, and the sound of tires turning through shallow puddles on the ground crept in from the outside.

The world was quiet and dark. The fireplace no longer flickered, the flames had long died out and there were no longer dancing shadows on the walls. 

It was always in these moments that life seemed an overwhelming, daunting task.

Life was an experiment that had gone on altogether too long, without reasonable cause or direction, and the documentation of it was being entirely neglected in any meaningful way. The data was useless.

Faces, places, and time.

Conversations brought back to life by driving down the same streets, passing the same houses, seeing the ghosts of people that once meant everything to your self-centered world. Dwelling in the past, ever seeking the present, and fearing the future. 

Moments that only held meaning if you chose to let them. 

A future that you fear. Not for the danger that lies in the future, but for your ability to adapt to situations far outside yourself. Does it matter, then? Anything at all could happen, and somehow you will come out alive and well on the other side. Or dead, but in that case you wouldn’t be around to notice.

Do we seek the plot that finally makes us break? Do we long to know just what it is that we cannot adapt to? Or, perhaps these are only what a lunatic wonders.

If anything can happen and you can adapt for the better, then what importance can anything truly hold in the current moment? Fleeting emotions, obsessive attachments, transforming discoveries – all of these things could be taken away, twisted, manipulated or disfigured to a point of unrecognition at any moment. 

Yet, you will live on.

You will grow, and discover the infinite possibilities inside yourself regardless.

How many times can you begin something with the best of intentions, only for it to get drowned out in the noise before you realize that all it ever could be was simply the intention itself?

How many times can you watch your good intentions can be churned into the concrete that paves your life’s path, before you wonder whether intentions of any kind are worth having at all?

Meaning is perspective. Everything is temporary.

Try It Five Times

“This will be the fifth time I’ve tried to write this down.”

The room was empty, as it was late at night and everyone had gone to their respective beds. The words quietly whispered themselves to no one.

Some feelings exist in your chest with an overwhelming need for exploration, declaration and furthermore – an explanation. Explanation of how it got there, and why, and what does it mean. When will it go away? Where did it come from?

Usually these feelings made their way into a poem, a photograph, a sketch, or even a song.

This time was different. It was trapped. Unable to be expressed, explored, or declared, let alone explained – it simply festered.

It was not a good feeling, nor a bad feeling. It was a twisted feeling. Perhaps even a disorienting feeling.

Describing the feeling in any way led to an unsolvable maze of contradictions.

It would start at a lonely place, only to realize that it also led to a sense of new togetherness. It would feel cynical at first, but also surfaced feelings of love. But what kind of love? Love of family? Love of friends? Love of romance or lust? And to what end?

It was a pining after an unattainable, unachievable horizon that was ever moving at the whim of a stranger.

A stranger who would move in and out of sight, and the particular stranger would perhaps not remain the same from day to day.

But then, the words finally fell out. She blinked at the simplicity of the feeling she’d been trying to describe. She wasn’t sure who the words were to, but she was certain they needed to find them and absorb their message.

Just love me.

For The Experience

“No one really knows what happiness is.”

Her t-shirt pulled over her head in the bathroom stall in one trained motion, easily navigating awkward corners that would normally prove difficult to avoid in such a restrictive space.

She stared at the overnight bag hanging on the hook. Inside was everything one might need for a morning after a night spent in a strange place. A change of clothes, deodorant, toothbrush and toothpaste.

A light flickered, reflecting the wavering thoughts that raced around her head.

She couldn’t pin down the exact moment that the knot in her stomach from yesterday turned into this brewing storm of mental ambiguity.

You and I, we are so opposite.

The words from last night’s conversation lingered in the air, almost palpable.

She couldn’t remember what had brought about the observation, but something about it didn’t quite taste right. The truth lay in their general outlooks on life and the human race more than anything else.

Every human is fallible. Every single person has a background, a story, a series of events – often wildly out of their control – that has brought them to be who they are today. No matter in what degrees nature or nurture may have shaped them, they are who they are due to a fine mix of history and character.

She hooked her bra together, adjusting it to fit.

Everything should fit. That’s what life is, finding the right fit for the right time in the right places.

Finding happiness.

Are you happy? It doesn’t seem like it.

More conversation that had followed her out the door. Her happiness had historically been found in many places. In the arms of a lover, in the joys of a new project, in the company of good friends. Lately, her happiness seemed inscrutable.

She was here for the party, as they say.

The experience of something new and interesting, the thrill of the unknown. The excitement that builds as you work your way towards the top of the first drop on a roller coaster. The moment of suspension before the descent.

Where the descent would take her next was less important. It was the apex of the mountain, the climax that concerned her most. The breathless moment of being in the now.

Living outside of boundaries. Forgetting comfort zones. Toeing for the edge, watching the gravel fly into the abyss below. Seeking constant change.

Chancing whether or not one can fly.

She was here for these experiences. The happiness found in the high of discovery.

There are different flavors of happiness. This was the happiness she craved for today.


“I hate hair.”

This was the answer she gave again and again to the question that was asked all too often. The baited question, why did you really cut your hair so short?

If cutting her hair was to make a statement, she would have made the statement when she cut her hair. If it was to make an announcement, she would have made the announcement already, perhaps in association with her short hair. She really did hate hair, and that was all there was to her decision.

The baited question.

Always asked in secret. Where no one else would hear. Quietly, hoping that the secluded nature would bring out the truth. Digging to get to the bottom of whatever it was. No one else is here, you can tell me.

The coaxing and comforting of those with ulterior motives, trying to shine their light into what they secretly hoped was a dark corner. Something they hoped would allow them to be the hero of their own fantasy. The masturbatory need to discover something hidden and dirty, then clean it for all to see.

No one will know.

Growing Up

“Growing up is strange.”

It was a recurring theme, a statement repeated ever louder and with more emphasis than it had the last time. The exact words and phrasing changed, but the message stayed the same.

Growing older posed peculiar opportunities, created ever changing environments, and constantly challenged the notion of predefined societal precepts.

As she sipped on her organic Fair Trade coffee out of a locally created mug, she wondered whether she was destined to become a hippie. It always seemed the question of love was  the underlying problem at hand.

Love comes in many shapes, sizes and forms. Love comes in the simple expression of human connection, friendship even in moments passing. Love comes in the intense sexual connection of two lovers. The questions arise for the in-between and beyond. Are these two extreme ends of a linear equation, or are these merely two pieces in an array of infinite possibilities?

Such a simple word, so often used, taken, and given away, yet so little understood.

Each love is uniquely different. The love between any combination of people will differ based on the capabilities, background and experiences of such people. Two friends. Estranged parents raising a child together. A group united on political beliefs. A community of religious believers. Strangers driving the same unusual make and model of car down the freeway, side by side. Lifelong monogamous partners.

Who is to say which of these loves matters more? Who is to define what these loves can or should be?

The important thing to understand about these relationships, long or short, big or small, is that they are relative to those experiencing them. No two loves can be the same.

Is love linear? Do you move through life loving only one person at at time? Or do you in fact, hold love for many people at once?

It would seem obvious. There is family love, friend love, romantic love, lustful love. There is fast love, easy love, difficult love, slow love. There is deep love, shallow love, momentary love and long lasting love.

Friend love can give way to romantic love. Romantic love can give way to friend love. Lustful love can give way to romantic love. Friend love can give way to family love.

Yet, so often, love feels competitive. We want the love we have to be the best version of love, because we want to feel confident that we are living a fulfilled existence. We want to believe that we’re not missing out on something better. We want to believe that we are offering the best love that there is.

When we become insecure in our love, we become madmen. We hide it away, we attempt to validate it in some way, we distance ourselves, we lash out at the love of others.

The truth is, there is no ultimate love.

Just, love.


“Anonymity is overrated.”

She sighed, speaking to no one in particular, as no one in particular would have been able to hear.

Every single person passing by was a potential friend, a potential lover, a potential enemy. What constitutes the overture of a hello? What invites the cultivation of these potentials? What calls for the personal intrusion of one life into another?

She’d seen the same woman in blue close behind her on both sides of the street. Did the very coincidence of directional solidarity create a foundation for conversation? Likely not.

An interesting sign, a particularly funny set of buildings, a silly business name.

She was to experience these things as a stranger, strangely alone and strangely uncertain of what they would mean. These would one day provide her with topics of conversation, a casual reference of something familiar, but today they would merely be pieces of trivia to store away, alone and unnoticed.

To be a stranger is to be unknown.

It is the casual forced smile. It is awkward prolonged eye contact followed by looking away and walking on by. It is wondering what would happen if you interrupted a conversation. It is debating whether to tell someone they are beautiful.

To be unknown is to be uninvited. How do you find an invitation?

What Shapes You

“I literally have no idea who I am right now.”

The unrefined string of words seemed pathetically lacking once strewn haphazardly onto the table. It felt tasteless, void of the impact they truly held; the meaning utterly lost in translation.

She doubted her companions were chewing over the thought as much as she did. Their compassionate reassurances were received thankfully, yet she doubted how comprehensively they understood her deeper meaning.

Suddenly you are standing alone, fully alone, to deal with the consequences. Not only of what Life itself has brought you, but to stand atop the apex of your choices. Who are you?

This full realization of your bullheaded leadership and principled decision-making has brought you into the light, naked and utterly left to your own devices. You are brought to your knees. The weight comes and goes.

You have nothing beyond your convictions.

Do you spend time based on who you are, or does the way you spend your time shape you?

Are you the sum of your experiences, or are you the potential of experiences yet to come? Further yet, are you the sum of all your experiences past and future combined into one now?

If you would never have done something yesterday that you will do today, does that change who you will be tomorrow? Were you not in fact the same person, only under the misconstrued notion that you would never have done such a thing?

At times we live our entire lives under the illusion of self, only to lose the very foundation on which we had built such a self. Who are you, truly, without the foundation of another Self to build upon?

It is as if someone has suddenly turned on a very bright light and you are afraid of what you will see when your eyes adjust.

The Curse of Thinking

“It always boils down to the fact that I think too damn much.”

The words faded into the emptiness of the car. She sat in silence for a moment and began to doubt whether she’d actually spoken aloud.

The smell of rain came in through the cracked windows. Asphalt danced with the lingering scent of wet rubber and heated air. Another twenty minutes, and she would be home. Another twenty minutes, and she would be cloaked in the comfort of her own scents in her own bed. Another twenty minutes, and she would be free to sit idly and continue to think.

However, she thought to herself, I don’t want to think.

Thinking led to thoughts, which led to speculation and deliberation over events that would never come to pass nor even present themselves — due only to the fact they had been driven away by the mere idea of their existence. Thoughts, which led to confidence and bravado one moment, yet gave way to doubt and insecurity the next.

In one moment a thought may appear to be a brilliant idea, the birth of a moment made of innocence and truth. Once continued thinking is allowed, the next moment will reveal that very same thought will reveal a darker nature. One of selfish desire, often infused with subtext and ulterior motive.

It is this, then, that strangles the subsequent potential for any direction the hatchling of a thought may have taken if allowed to spread its wings. The true nature of the thought is suffocated, assumed guilty until proven innocent.

True, free spontaneity dead at the hand of thought.