My friend Jade is living in Japan and teaching English, we met in Laos. She came up with a great idea: we swap photographs and write about them—no specific form, it can be a poem, essay, etc. I minored in writing in college, but visual arts took over after that and I consider myself quite rusty with words. So, this will be a good exercise to get those writing skills back up to snuff. This project may go on for years, it may only be an occasional post, It’s basically an experiment. So, without further ado, here is the first image she sent and my short essay below.
I’m old, but that feeling never quite goes away. It starts in my groin and then the heat travels up and fills my body. When I was young, it happened in seconds, an intense burning—an intense desire. At points I wished I had a switch that would just turn it off, turn it down even. It was all encompassing. I’ve moved states because of it, I’ve gotten in fights because of it (oh, just a little blood), and I’ve made bad decisions because of it. As I’ve gotten older, it has mellowed, it’s not so sharp-edged and jagged. It doesn’t affect my mind as strongly as it once did. I don’t mean to denigrate it, but I do appreciate the level that it is at now—warmer and rounder, and slower and tempered. It no longer makes me push, run hard through things, twist until I’m ready to burst. Desire. I don’t regret my past with her now, but I do appreciate that now it is a slow dance with her, a caress, a brushing of lips on her skin.