I was 14 years old and in love with Peach Harper, a divinely beautiful blonde with blue eyes and golden skin. I obsessed over how to express my undying love for her and managed to convince her to come to a tiny log cabin I had built. (This is all true.)
I had lied to get her out there, telling her that I secretly wanted to be her, a painfully stupid ruse. I wanted to kiss her, and that was it. And maybe touch her golden skin and float off into Nirvana, if possible. Anyway, she was actually the one who asked me if I wanted to kiss her. I closed my eyes and leaned into her and kissed her…somewhere on the chin.
My mother chose that moment to arrive in her green tattered bathrobe and escort Peach away. I blubbered and gestured stupidly, realizing the glittering moment had passed. I had completely panicked and missed those velvety lips.
Everything went downhill from there. Peach met another boy who she brought to my party and went off into the woods to make out. I offered my hand to her when she came back and pushed her down the hill. I was furious at her betrayal – even if the truth was that she had wanted to kiss me and I had fucked all of that up.
I invested everything in Peach, had written letter after letter over an entire year and even bought her a Hotel California T-shirt on her birthday. And when the moment came, I was an abject failure. I cannot let that die. This might explain my habit to hide in my words and obfuscate my life. I am afraid to expose myself for the loser that I am. Oh, Peach, where are you now?
I need something that makes sense, that will make me whole. These words, that’s what I want. Need is the word. I think of it as simple, straight, nothing else in my head. It is why I get up, stand in the room, move through the streets, reach out to drink. And while I’m trying to keep the eggs evenly out, this is it: a stream of words, where I’m turning and move like I know, inciting right, others assent and are stirred. It’s not that none of the rest matters but that I lose the sense of what really is, what it might be, important made nothing and nothing jacked up, so that I don’t know what I’m doing and may seem like I’m screwing the wind. Everything else is distraction. Yeah, like I’m doing now, a direction, something clear, words published, understood, stamped forward. Yeah, that’s it. That.