|4AM: Cassanova's Curse "When The Abyss Looks Into You First"
||[Sep. 14th, 2009|08:08 pm]
His eyes are wet.|
He looks at his brother with stern rage. It's the first time he's been able to in his life. His chest heaves at an incredible rate and his heart pounds in his chest like it's trying to escape. He wants to kill him. He wants to end his own history, but even then he's held back by two frail women and he realizes that at the heart of it he's still afraid. So he screams instead.
Just a child, just a story picked out of Midwest lore like all the other stereotypes we hate so much but inside acknowledge so begrudginly. Sixteen year old mother, Eighteen year old petty-drug-dealer dad, overwhelmed underprepared and just flat out underneathe doing their best to find the closest thing Kansas has to a getto so they can trade their way to a life. It didn't work, not even for a short time. I remember getting shit-canned with my biological mother a few years ago when in a moment of less than lucidity (a trait I would later inherit) she admitted if it wasn't for my adopted parents I'd only be an abortion.
My bloodline does not do warm and fuzzy well.
But the child, me, was adopted. And though his new parents were old enough to be his grandparents what they lacked in youthful energy they made up for in how much they loved me. Yet all families are poisioned, everyone has their story and mine was not so different. It was circumstance that changed everything. It was a moment when the axis of my planet turned and who I am split from the distant figure I see today.
What those loving parents of choice failed to realize was a germ growing in the blood of their daughter. In her mind there was a need that would never be filled, and today I spend each day waiting for the call that she took it too far, drank too much, took to many pills and the only person in my family that understands me that well will be gone and I'll be finally and forever among strangers. My adopted brother was another story. He watched my Father and I with poisioned eyes. He coveted every thing I was ever given, he hated every kind word my father spent on me because he believed it was taken from him. Silently, he waited for his chance for revenge, to strip all gifts and all smiles. Eventually he would get his chance. I was the interloper, and he would root me out the second I wasn't protected.
His chance would come. My father, who en route with me the first day was heard remarking "I will spoil this child until no one else wants him" heard his heart break knocking down a cinder block wall with a sledgehammer while I was five hundred miles away. I have repeatedly been told that it wouldn't have mattered if he'd gone to the hospital at that very second, but the fact is and should be noted-
He finished knocking down that goddamn wall before he went inside for help. I was eight years old.
He looks at his brother with wide eyed fear. There's a pistol leveled at his eyes and he just doesn't know what to think. Moments before he was playing with his cousin in the garage, doing what adolescent boys do. Hitting things that can't hit back and proclaiming themselves king of the world. And damn it we were kings of the world. A brotherhood of bad-smelling sweat and strange hairs, we were coming to our own. And at the moment our own was a single tone of panic leveled at the place between his eyes, his brothers fat face staring at him.
What is it going to do for you? He said, and I only trembled. But in the years that followed and my limbs grew and I became strong I never forgot it. For better or for worse.
Then, I did the smart thing. I bowed my head and I just said yes to everything that came out of his mouth.
The funeral was the first time I ever looked at my Mother as old. It was the first time I saw it. I remember standing there and looking at her lay a shaking hand on my Fathers casket. I noticed the way it shook, and how the lines were so much more deeply engraved on her hands than mine. I looked up to her face and it was like her entire head moved itself forward, a full body sob. I saw the disconnection of a silver strand that I still don't understand until this day. I didn't know it then, but I was watching someone break. In that moment the first mistake of my life that I can remember was made. I would be the Man now. I would protect and be strong. During my Fathers funeral I did not cry, something my Mother would scream at me for years later. I sat stoic and determined to take my fathers place and protect, as all young boys are programmed to do by loving fathers misplaced and premature or not.
The problem was. I wasn't the only one who wanted to be the man.
I am 22. I'm no longer small, no longer weak. My scars speak to the battles I've been in, won and lost, but faught nonetheless. I'm heaving my chest up and down and trying not to splinter the table between us. He says he'll have me arrested. I tell him I'll put him in a hospital first.
They call my brother the Craigslist Rapist. You can actually google him. He hung himself in jail after they gave him 30 years for what he did. Such a waste of rage, so much anger that has nowhere to go. This story is ultamitely about the first time I ever faced him down, made him retreat under his rock or wherever such people go.
I am scraping at the door jamb. Two women are holding onto me and I know that I can break throught them like they aren't even there. And he stares at me with those evil eyes and my teeth grate but I still can't move forward. In this moment I still lack the courage to make the first move.
I don't remember the first time David ever put his hands on me. Considering what he did later I'm almost glad of it. He ruined my Sister evidentally, raping her repeatedly. It was practice I suppose for what he would do to so many random women later, I'm pretty sure the real number will never be known.
What I do remember, one of my first memories in fact is my Mother looking on in horror as he repeated to me over and over that I was destined to be nothing. That all I existed to do was sap what little energy and resources my Mother had until I could get the hell out. To his credit, what little I can give he may have been right. I became a hellion in the battle for dominance. Too frail to challenge David directly I set myself to little rebellions, doing the things that he used as talking points as to why I was unsavable, extra, un-needed. I played the part hoping to hold what little control I had over anything, and my Mother bless her was victim to that first of motherly attributes, believe your children are perfect. So all that she could do is watch as I was being torn down. We've forgiven each other for this, many times. In return at that time I released my ire on her too, unloading in the only weapon a coming adolescent can weild, rebellion.
Now, I think of him, and I don't mind saying that I miss him. It was nice in it's own way to be able to center my rage on such an obvious form of evil. I still wake up in sweats, I still wish he was supple and I could finally say the things I was too cowardly to when I was young.
He runs back to his car, and for the first time I feel justified. I was only nine when he held a gun to my head, and at least this time I wouldn't let the gravel push me back any further. I make a promise to myself, the 100th, that no one will see this part of me. I'll be Angel, DJ, no one ever asks where the music comes from, they just love that the music comes at all. I span eight states living up to that while my brother works his way up to his shoe-laces, straps them around his neck and that's all she wrote folks.
When I was thirteen I bolted. I was gone for three days. I'd driven across two states and ended up in situations that I'm honestly amazed I lived through. Maybe it's because I took two friends along for the ride. When they chickened out and I begrudgingly returned home David was there waiting. By then, he'd learned the methods to shake me down to my very core. I was a shaking leaf then, finally carved down to the bone but with a spark inside that would seed and grow until...
He is the boy, I am the man. We move ever forward, but there are times by myself that I still remember the steps I never took, where all I could take comfort in was the fact that I looked him in the eye.
But I did, look him in the eye.
The candle burns down, and I'm reminded of things that are so much more important and so much more current than I and my brother. But through history it's been such a difining moment that I thought I would tell you.
Fiction or fact. Did my brows narrow, did I scream?
And what if I told you that my biological mother and the sister of whom I mention so dearly were one in the same? What if it really WAS my grandparents that had adopted me and the reason my sister and I are so close is that she was that sixteen year old girl, raped repeatedly by her brother until she ran away the only way a midwest girl knows how, and was beaten down by the act? What if in the end she gave me over to the only people she felt could protect me?
And what, if for whatever reason, they failed?
Fact or fiction reader. Your call. Have I become too fantastical for you yet? Are you bleeding into the belief that this is a lonely hearted fiction written by someone you will never meet?
Or did the words ring true, and if they ring true then riddle me this.
What if the abyss never gave you the chance to look first?
Your move reader. This is just the beginning, and I haven't told you anything yet.