In fiction, I exercise my nosiness. I am as curious as my cats, and indeed that has led to trouble often enough and used up several of my nine lives. I am an avid listener. I am fascinated by other people's lives, the choices they make and how that works out through time, what they have done and left undone, what they tell me and what they keep secret and silent, what they lie about and what they confess, what they are proud of and what shames them, what they hope for and what they fear. The source of my fiction is the desire to understand people and their choices through time.
To Have Without Holding:Learning to love differently is hard,love with the hands wide open, lovewith the doors banging on their hinges,the cupboard unlocked, the windroaring and whimpering in the roomsrustling the sheets and snapping the blindsthat thwack like rubber bandsin an open palm.It hurts to love wide openstretching the muscles that feelas if they are made of wet plaster,then of blunt knives, thenof sharp knives.It hurts to thwart the reflexesof grab, of clutch, to love and letgo again and again. It pesters to rememberthe lover who is not in the bed,to hold back what is owed to the workthat gutters like a candle in a cavewithout air, to love consciously,conscientiously, concretely, constructively.I can't do it, you say it's killingme, but you thrive, you glowon the street like a neon raspberry,You float and sail, a helium balloonbright bachelor's buttons blue and bobbingon the cold and hot winds of our breath,as we make and unmake in passionatediastole and systole the rhythmof our unbound bonding, to haveand not to hold, to lovewith minimized malice, hungerand anger moment by moment balanced.
Huddled in her mink in the Kansas City airport, she had a vision of women writing about sex as openly as male writers, but quite, quite differently. Some women would treat sex much as men did,as conquest, as adventure--in a way as McCarthy had. Other women would treat female sexuality far less romantically then men who did not consider themselves romantics, like Hemingway, were wont to. The earth would not move, no, there would be more biology and less theatrics. Women had less ego involvement in sex than men did, but far more at stake economically.
The societies kids naturally form are tribal. Gangs, clubs, packs. But we're herded into schools and terrified into behaving. Taught how we're supposed to pretend to be, taught to parrot all kinds of nonsense at the flick of a switch, taught to keep our heads down and our elbows in and shut off our minds and shut off our sex. We learn we can't even piss when we have to. That's how we learn to be plastic and dumb.