Objet d'Art

Re-Size Text: A A A A Comment

RSS blog print

Alexis Sears

Objet d'Art


      Good lives make bad stories.—Will Toledo



      My best friend really is a work of art—
      the architecture of her vertebrae,
      her bones like stilts we fear will fall apart
      but don’t. Inside her van, thoughts ricochet
      but chocolate milkshakes thick in plastic straws
      retain our silence. Women with gray hair
      walk through the parking lot, talk menopause
      too loudly, joke of having an affair.
      My best friend cocks her brows; I check my phone.
      A faceless man cries, “Please, something to eat!”
      I watch her. Does she also feel alone,
      or is it only me, or does the heat
      explain the glossy chasm in her eye?
      I want to tear apart the peach-stained sky.



      I want to tear apart the peach-stained sky,
      my blistered fingers twitching as I shred
      it into curly strips. I don’t know why
      I’m always like this, or what lies ahead
      for girls like me. I never seem to grow
      up. Example: almost 23,
      still lusting after rock stars who don’t know
      their sharp and track-marked arms cure my ennui
      when I pace in the darkness. Can I scream,
      let down my hair on starless summer nights,
      paint my face with orange the way I dream
      of? Or drift through space on satellites?
      I’ll tell myself that nothing matters here,
      it doesn’t matter if I disappear.



      It doesn’t matter if I disappear
      the time some guy slurs, “God, you’re hard to read.”
      I’m seventeen, untouched, and I can hear
      blue sirens, trap music. I see a bead
      of sweat fall from his forehead, and he smirks,
      “It’s seven inches, at least. Want to take
      a picture?” The real tragedy? This works
      on some girls. Not asleep but not awake,
      we kiss behind the frat house, in the alley,
      swimming in a sea of crushed Budweiser
      cans. If this is TV, the finale
      shows me, a girl with no one to advise her
      as she drifts through smoke that smells like stale sin.
      I wonder when my real life will begin.



      I wonder when my real life will begin.
      Has it already? I’m a bloodied fist,
      my knuckles peeking through the walls, my grin
      stretching out in the summer. I insist
      I’m happy. I am, really. Cheap Moscato,
      brie, and berries fill the fridge. I spend
      afternoons downtown, eating gelato
      from the creamery. The only friend
      I need is in my skin, wearing my name.
      I won’t discuss my sadness anymore
      (even in poems) or relentless shame
      that once was drunk and sloppy on the floor,
      convulsing. After all, there’s no more pain.
      I say this regularly to my brain.



      I see this regularly in my brain,
      a fantasy more fascinating than most:
      two cute Alexises in lawn chairs feign
      annoyance when bombarded by a host
      of suitors clad in velvet jackets. This time
      no men who leave without an explanation,
      whose words ignite your cheeks like booze and lime:
      “You’re free. Don’t talk to me again.”Vacation
      homes in Greece. Alexis clones will flaunt
      their swimsuits. Courtney once said, “you don’t need
      beauty to fuck anyone you want.”
      Remember that. Remember you’ll succeed.
      You’ll cruise with class, an overflowing wallet,
      you’ll find true love, or lust, whatever you call it.



      You’ll find true love, or lust. Whatever you call it,
      it kills you with its filthy melodrama!
      I grab my shaky larynx, and I haul it
      into the garbage, nauseous from the trauma
      of being so disposable. I’m fighting
      the urge to whisper platitudes, to speak
      in riddles like I always do when writing.
      This constant posturing is a technique
      I’m starting to regret. It takes its toll
      on you—the achy smiles, the Believe in
      fate, things happen for a reason, soul
      mate crap. What was I ever doing, even?
      I should have been more honest from the start:
      are any of us really works of art?