Tulips and Tourniquets
And you are before me with a twitching eye and something else that tells me you aren't comfortable...haven't been comfortable for a hundred years. Since the dogs stopped fucking next door and bit the ear off the little girl who was picking the tulip in the yard while your mother was boiling water for tea. Since the stars were constellations you wanted to know the names of, you haven't been comfortable with me. Because you know I ache. It starts when I open my eyes and realize we are still together, and that the day will bring minutes that we'll spend together. Our lives will be about taking my medicine on time and getting the insurance forms filled out right so the adjustments don't come back to us over and over again, like Australian boomerangs. You want me to feel loved. I want you to go away because my body aches from ills too numerous to list and my heart aches from falling out of love with you. Our long night—another in a string of many that will last until you become too tired to care for me, or I die—will start after Charlie's Angels re-runs and Dairy Queen, because a shake is all I can get down. We will never again be lovers, and I want to be small so you cannot see me in this bed of white bleached sheets and spit towels. I ache. And I don't want you to watch it.
Suzy Devere appears and disappears seemingly at will. She could be camping in the underground right now, or back in Pattaya, sitting in a rattan chair at a bar overlooking the harbor, having drinks with some old ghosts of Vietnam.