Wednesday, May 05, 2004

Exhibitionists Sometimes Forget

I forget sometimes who is on the other side of this virtual world. I forget who may be reading this. Family members are probably scandalized by my activities (although not lately. I’ve been behaving). Former partners and lovers find out what I really think about them and who has taken their place. Current partners and lovers gain a better understanding about what goes on in my head. I have committed perhaps the greatest of all writing sins: forgetting who my audience is.

I had just finished having a brief visit with M. (he says I should nickname him gordito and he will call me flaca. I refuse to play into that). I log back onto my computer and my friend and former lover im’s me. He says he misses me but sees that I have moved on to new horizons. I forget that I had shown him my blog about a month ago, to show him the piece I had written about another lover of mine. I didn’t think he would remember the URL. I didn’t think that he would be reading it as a way to decipher my recent lack of communication with him but that’s what he did.

I don’t know why I felt like I owed him an explanation. I don’t why I felt bad. He had done it to me before, suddenly not returning pages or phone calls because he found another activist in our circle to sleep with. I’m not sure I even have forgiven him for his treatment of me after I had an abortion after I got pregnant by him.


Brown Baby Wishes

For F. and the baby we never had together

Brown baby wishes
And DominiRican dreams
Got left behind at Queens Plaza,
Right on the # 7 line.
I thought I could save him.
I thought you would show up late,
As you had so many times before,
And I would miss the appointment.
I hoped that you would come off the train
From El Barrio
And ask me not to do this.
But you didn’t.
You came on time and rushed me off.
You made jokes and wrote music
Between watching Jerry Springer
As I had blood drawn,
Had a sonogram,
And given what was called counseling.
I wanted to tell you
That our baby was 9 weeks old
But I didn’t.

Brown baby wishes
And Afro-Latino dreams
Conceived on my kitchen countertop.
Life created in the shadow of death.
Didn’t you think that was a sign?
I did.
For weeks I felt my body making room
For weeks I asked if you thought I was getting fat,
But as long as I was naked
I don’t think you cared if I did.
For weeks I carried our baby to rallies and marches,
Sang in the sun
And danced in the rain with our baby.
I screamed and yelled for justice with our baby.
I wanted to tell you that I had named our baby.
After your boy who was killed by the pigs,
But I didn’t.

Brown baby wishes
And Nuyorican dreams
Got lost in an anesthetic haze,
Got lost in a moment of me spread open before a stranger,
Got lost in the banter of nurses,
Got lost in me being called by a number
Instead of my name,
All for the sake of confidentiality
But I didn’t want this to be a secret.
I didn’t want us to be secret.
I wanted the whole fucking world to know
That I was too fucking weak to say no to you,
That I was too fucking weak to send you to hell
With your so called unpreparedness to be a father again
Despite your eagerness to fuck me again
And again
And again,
With your complaints of to many other tragedies happening in your life,
I wanted to parade in your shadow
From El Barrio to Washington Heights
With my belly getting bigger.
I wanted to follow you to gagas
And raras
And ceremonias
Wearing a t-shirt announcing my sexual status with you
And its result.
Fuck confidentiality,
And modesty.
I wanted to scream at the doctors
My name and your name.
I wanted to scream,
but I didn’t. I fell asleep instead
asking forgiveness.

Brown baby wishes
And maternal dreams
I never dared utter.
They got lost in the waves
Of physical and emotional pain.
They got lost in anger because you didn’t insist on taking me home.
They got lost in anger because you never said you were sorry.
They just got fucking lost,
Like you got lost for two weeks
Never calling to see how I was,
Never returning a dozen pages.
I smiled when the doctors put me on the pill.
I smiled wider when you wanted to see me again,
Now that I was cured, physically healed, and fully fuckable again.
I forgave you when you apologized for not knowing what to do
And doing nothing.
I slept with you over and over and over again.
I told you I loved you.

Brown baby wishes
And all my dreams
Live in the limbo
Of my vacuumed womb
Live in every time we fuck
Live in every prayer said
Live in every offering made
Live in every little brown baby I see
Live in every pregnant belly I meet
Live in every unanswered call
Live in every request for a sibling from my daughter
Live in every period I’ve had
Live in every birth control pill I’ve swallowed
Live in every condom I didn’t make you use.
I wanted to tell you all of this.
So now I am.

He said he wasn’t surprised to see I had someone new. The last time I lay naked on his Washington Heights futon he predicted this would happen. He said it was my personality. I don’t know what he meant when he wrote that. Did he mean I was fickle? Did he mean I was always seeking out the next thrill? Did he mean that he was jealous? He admitted to being jealous.

Just last week, my most recent ex-boyfriend turned 39. I had long ago promised him a drink. He came looking for it and I was avoiding it, mostly because I knew he was seeking more than a drink. I had just met someone to whom I wanted to give and deserved all my attention and affection. My ex got the hint pretty quickly and has stepped away. The chit chatty im’s have nearly disappeared.

So to all my friends, lovers, partners, and family members……this is a disclaimer.
I will write about you. Take it or leave it.


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