Sunday, June 20, 2010

Bounce You On the Lap of Science (Move it to the beats of silence)

Part 1.

As it was our week to celebrate a year together, J. and I did it up in style. The gods of work schedules prevailed upon Fate to allow for a series of free nights, and made good use of them. Thursday we had a lovely evening in the park listening to some Malian blues as the sunset behind the skyline, and then we were off to the tattoo parlor to get J.'s sister a belated birthday present, where we decided we would get some tattoos ourselves. It will be fun, I think, to finally get my dark horse. A gay tramp stamp, I suppose, but I love the look of them on the twinky pornstars I jerk off to so regularly.

Last night we saw Fucking Men (playing at the Bailiwick) and loved it. A very well-structured script which moved quickly but allowed the silhouettes of the characters to stand in marked relief given how briefly they unfolded. (What it true of love may not be true of art: the swift blossoming, though it withers almost instantly, still imprints an intensity of truth.) Then it was off to dinner, which was a quick bicycle ride away (actually 7 miles away...w/e), where we indulged in some fine dining. J. was in the perfect throws of youthful exuberance and, as it always is, it was infectious. We drank and ate and enjoyed one another's undoubtedly obvious and silly grins. Our server said we were "adorable." (The proper adjective for love.)

Then it was up to dance, dance, dance our pants off. Something strange happened: J., up on the little stage, begins to dance with another boy. And I watch at first, and he watches me, and I smile at him, and I wink, and then I turn away. They danced together until the boy ran off with his friends. Unsure of my ease the evening was a bit touch and go, but I was fine: unbothered.

Perhaps it is the drugs, perhaps that I am preparing to quit smoking tomorrow, or perhaps that I was able to tell him I knew he lied to me without my voice-cracking, and maybe it was that though I didn't need to prove my assertion he still didn't push it; and maybe it was because I said, "I don't care" (which was a lie at the time); or maybe because I'd just seen a play about the silly pretensions of monogamy... It doesn't really matter why, but I was actually unbothered. I'd seen what was so scary when it was just a fear: him enjoying himself in the arms of another person, him touching another person. I didn't feel that emptying in my stomach which he once gave me occasion to feel; I didn't curl my lips into a sneer, I smiled.

And perhaps that he was bashful about it all afterward, needed to reassure me, and be reassured by me. And perhaps that he came when I blew him, and then thanked me for my tenderness when we fucked. And perhaps, too, because I actually trust him. Finally. Again, for the first time.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Never Look Back (WhatWouldIDoIfIDidn'tHaveYou)

Barthes speaks of love as the polymorphous vicissitudes of the "Image-Repertoire" that composes the Other, oneself, and the relationship between them. These are fragments, "schemas" (Barthes' corrects his reader: "These fragments of discourse can be called _figures_. The word is to be understood, not in its rhetorical sense, but rather in its gymnastic or choreographic acceptation; in short, in the Greek meaning: σχυμα is not the 'schema,' but, in a much livelier way, the body's gesture caught in action and not contemplated in repose: the body of athletes, orators, statues: what in the straining body can be immobilized.")
Thus, the lover's discourse (and the text which will "simulate" this: _A Lover's Discourse: Fragments_) is a "dis-cursus" ("originally the action of running here and there, comings and goings, measures taken, 'plots and plans': the lover, in fact, cannot keep his mind from racing, taking new measures and plotting against himself.")
Yet, the image-repertoire is static--each image is paralyzing, and it is the terror of an overwhelming image that does not so much imply a modification in its substance, but rather, that its stasis produces an amplification of its aeffects simply because it will not go away. This is not boredom (though one could imagine a pleasant image growing worn, like a porno that just doesn't "do it anymore"--the "je ne ce quoi" has evaporated, its 'effervescence' effaced--what a beautiful vulgarity!)
Rather, it is the horror of not being able to be done with an image! It is the dyspepsia Nietzsche diagnoses as nihilism. The inability to be done with anything, the "trauma" (the dream), is an activity, not a passive affliction: one must will-to-possess the image, to dwell upon the image, to wish to undo it and re-imagine it as one wishes--that is, to neutralize the dis-comforting image, to make it conform to one's own comfort. (Not the same as a desire to punish: this is not masochism; I am describing an absurdity named "Sovereignty". It is a profound irony: that the pursuit of sovereignty leads only ever to subjugation.)
Love, then, is somewhat demystified: love is the acute sensation of being haunted by the image-repertoire of the loved other, of being incapable of being able to produce _new_ images (for this would be a violation, an artistic violence against the free-giveness of the Other), which must rely upon, which must learn to embrace, to be ravished by the images given freely by the Other.
Yet, Barthes' loved Other does not say a word (for it is a text, X does not speak, he is written). But more profoundly, the Other gives signs (like a prophet, whose true-discourse is hidden within himself alone, who cannot answer before a tribunal or a chorus of witnesses). This implies deciphering these signs, to dwell on them, to not let them pass before they have been apprehended fully. That is, the lover cannot but torture himself, cannot help but provoke the horror of an image.
To love is to be in this paradox. To be in love is to be impossibly polymorphous (to be suspended by these images, in the images, perpetually re-figured). To be a lover is to be in the flux of the schemata, to give and receive, to measure and run back and forth, here and there....Is there a meaning to all of this action? (How could anyone ask such a question?!)

One year ago I met J. at work. It was wholly unexpected. He left, he came back. In between there was a risk on his part, and a desire on mine (I never remember properly). Tomorrow we celebrate. Though, the festival of our rage, our tenderness, our exhaustion, our passion--this has never stopped.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Affirmation of the Affirmation is Affirmation

I've been getting high on Barthes--A Lover's Discourse: Fragments--and he, of course, is getting high on Nietzsche (via Deleuze) and Goethe (Werther). When J. and I have our moments (scenes, if you will) I despair, not having a proper hold of myself or him or what it is exactly that has instigated the scene (for it is also something outside us that prompts the disturbance). A hold that doesn't need to hang on something. A gift that dissolves in the giving: "If you want you can..." and I interrupt: because you offered me an out, I know I won't need it.