Before we had a photographer, Mike and I had some ideas of what we wanted this project to be. In order to introduce it to potential photographers, I had to come up with some images, so Mike came over to do a trial run. From those first quick snapshots, I photoshopped together some teasers. But the original teaser was this:
Apparently it caused a lot of trouble. He says I’m a troublemaker, but I never believe him. I just have a different sense of “NSFW”.
The second teaser came a few days after an odd, absinthe-infused, cliquish evening of jazz and eye patches. That night there was an intense love that ran between us. As children we form intense friendships, where one person is your best friend. You love them more than you ever loved anyone and you can’t imagine your life without them. Perhaps that’s where our mindset was that night.
This is where the story actually begins. We did an impromptu piece, a prayer of sorts, at the Jazz and Wordsmiths event at 5C in the East Village. Between sips of wine and absinthe we wrote and spoke. I knew things were shifting, our projects coming together, but I didn’t know how or why. We spoke in secret that night, codes only we knew the combinations to. I told him at a Speakeasy. “I think you’ve become my muse.” We had both been on the muse journey recently. Late into the evening we parted ways. “I have to make peace with my past.” I said. “Do you need me to come with you?” he asked. “I think I have to do this one on my own,” I said.
I walked away, waiting until he left and walked to C-Squat. I sat on a stoop nearby and drank absinthe from my flask. I tried not to cry. For years Holly and Brian had been my muses and even after their deaths, they still remained. There was a part of me that just didn’t want to let go, that thought that I could never have this kind of passionate, creative relationship again, or maybe was afraid of replacing it and them. But time changes, and people change, and sometimes you can’t hold onto that anymore. And sometimes new people come into your life, and you have no idea why you’re so connected to them or trust them but you do. And it’s ok. Mike texted me, “Are you okay?” I texted back. “Always.” I finished my flask and ventured back home.
I got home and snapped two images of what I was wearing and stripped down. I cried again. Mike had texted me to see if I had gotten home safe. I wrote him back. It was secret and cryptic. He understood. I sent him a picture the next day. It wasn’t sexy, or smart, or anything in between. Just a captured moment of someone letting go of something that was holding her back. We are not our past, we’re only what we make of ourselves in the present, and what we will make of ourselves in the future. I told Mike half-jokingly, “My next book will be all about you.”
This was the photo and underneath the teaser.
TO BE CONTINUED…
x to the o,