The Beautiful and the Damned

The morning is balmy and close, hot already in the early shining rays of summer sun. As I watch the buildings begin to glisten in the light, a wet fog pulls in nearly obscuring what I know to be there, angles and lines which have been there for as long as I can remember. Tracing my gaze over his face as he sleeps in perfect breathy silence, I wonder who I am sometimes and how I got here into a place both familiar and unknown. There has always been a part of me which was detached, sifting, both here and away, both touchable and untouchable. We are born into a game which has two sides and no way to win, only ways to keep kicking the can down the road. Only ways to keep flipping the coin until it all stops for good. Today, heads. Tomorrow, a tailspin, perhaps, or the same old thing underneath what you wish you could bring about but haven’t the skills nor the energy. Having little tolerance for sleeping in, I pull my ever lengthening strawberry golden waves into a knot, slide out of the warmth of our bed, and tip toe off to the kitchen for coffee. The salons have opened up again and my favorite one calls and leaves me voicemails which I ignore. Come back in, we’re open! A cheerful pleading desperation. As if by making an appointment for a haircut I’d have cured something no one yet knows how to cure; soothed a fear no one can bear to feel shocking through their hearts minute by minute; affirmed a truth we all know is fabrication. We are not okay. We have not been okay. So very little of what is happening is okay. I drove by the other day on the way to the liquor store and saw the tiny salon parking lot overflowing with cars. Ah, yes, the herds are herding, the flocks are flocking, all trimmed and tweezed, waxed and highlighted back into a perverted kind of normal which I increasingly despise.

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Photo by Daniele D’Andreti

24 Replies to “The Beautiful and the Damned”

  1. I have a friend who is in quarantine. When she told me I swear a chill went up my back–if she could get it, I could get it. Like that was some kind of epiphany.

    The rest of the world is looking to us as examples of what Not to do. Don’t we look like fools?

    Perhaps we have too many freedoms.

    Be safe.

    ❀

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hey, Charles. Yes, we look like fools because we are fools, which is putting it kindly. Ignorant, arrogant. It’s a fucking disgrace. I don’t think “we” even understand what freedom means. If we did we wouldn’t be so willfully stupid. I hope your friend is okay, I’m sorry she is struggling. You be safe, too. ❀

      Liked by 2 people

  2. “There has always been a part of me which was detached, sifting, both here and away, both touchable and untouchable. We are born into a game which has two sides and no way to win, only ways to keep kicking the can down the road. Only ways to keep flipping the coin until it all stops for good. Today, heads. Tomorrow, a tailspin, perhaps, or the same old thing underneath what you wish you could bring about but haven’t the skills nor the energy.”

    “We are not okay. We have not been okay. So very little of what is happening is okay. I drove by the other day on the way to the liquor store and saw the tiny salon parking lot overflowing with cars. Ah, yes, the herds are herding, the flocks are flocking, all trimmed and tweezed, waxed and highlighted back into a perverted kind of normal which I increasingly despise.”

    Indeed and Amen.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. It certainly feels that way. πŸ˜ŽπŸ‘πŸ»

        Writing has been, not burdensome… labored(?) lately for me… having to be more patient like I’m collecting water from a faucet with a small stream of water coming out. So when I get enough to share, I pour it out for all haha.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Allison Marie, great & resonating post! The beautiful & the damned! Thank you.

    In the early days of the plague I made a point of not following the news; there seemed little point in its endless cycling numbers and horror. I figured this rare opportunity of given time could be spent better without its finger-jabs, its distraction; without fear. After one quarter year of not working I had become quite accustomed to this new, insular and isolated world. I enjoyed the peace of it, the space on the streets, the empty beach. I marvelled at the shapes that could be made of the days, the nights. Somewhere along the line the scales began to slide from my eyes and the real world, the one that had been hidden, began to flood back in.

    And then, some weeks back, the date of July 4th kept being spoken in the queues, on the paving. I realised that this date had been deemed the one when shops would reopen – It did make me smile wryly, Independence Day. But, as the day approached, the butterflies began to swell inside me. What else could I do but prepare. The piggy bank lay gutted on its side and the bills kept coming through the gap at the foot of the door. Stronger now, clearer, I made ready for the day. I gave myself my first post-apocalypse haircut (part Mad Max, part Eno).

    On the fourth I woke early. I ate breakfast, I showered, I shaved. I packed a bag of tools – I almost forgot where I had put them – and at 7.30 I walked to work for the first time in 3 months. At the corner of Station Rd., I was confused to see a hairy mob stood outside my shop at the far end. At first I assumed it to be a protest, a crime scene perhaps? But as I drew near I realised the herd had returned, the flock had flocked. I damn near kept walking.

    Keep on keeping on
    xo

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for this wonderful peek into your life, the life of your mind and spirit and existence, my dear glassmate. πŸ™‚ You have a way of telling things plainly and also with great interesting, intimate, generous detail. I’m so grateful for this. Life these days is strange, like a fun house mirror. Do you own a barber shop? I love the sound of your new haircut! Just not sure we are “post” the apocalypse . . . at least not here. But we continue, we do keep on. Onwards, yeah? The only way in or out of whatever we are in or out of. ❀ xoxox

      Liked by 1 person

      1. We gush, we blush.
        We peek, we speak.
        Welcome to the funhouse!
        Always with the darn mirrors!
        Strange times indeed.
        (apologies, you’re right: pre-post apocalypso)
        See you at the bar, glassmate.
        xoxo

        Liked by 1 person

        1. Objects may be closer than they appear!
          And yet, even in this 4th (5th? 47th?) month of the year PPA (pre-post-apocalypso), one never knows what may happen in strange times. Times like these tend to crush you and open you up at the same time, much as you describe. Sometimes what gets you through is a wild imagination. See you at the bar, Nick R. We’ll always have the bar. πŸ˜‰ xo

          Liked by 1 person

            1. Nick Reeves, you rascal it’s only 11am EST. But I like your style. I will see you at the club for lockin lockdown – don’t let anyone in my seat! You’ll know mine, of course, with its scrawled scratch of the initials AMC. xo

              Like

  4. Wow, Loved the message here! Especially, your ending “Ah, yes, the herds are herding, the flocks are flocking, all trimmed and tweezed, waxed and highlighted back into a perverted kind of normal which I increasingly despise.” So inspiring and brilliant – herds are herding, the flocks are flocking”!!! So great! So true! I feel the same about the perverted kind of normal!!! Awesome!!!
    xoxo
    πŸ˜˜πŸ’•πŸŒΉ

    .

    Liked by 1 person

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