On a Lighter Note…

I have a love-hate relationship with being naked. You can take that literally and figuratively—God knows I do.

I had a deal once with a friend of mine—I get naked for photos and she includes a cat in hers. Wait—what? How did that happen?

Because—that’s how we’re each inclined and the idea of it nearly amused us to death whilst imbibing one night. Literally, I might add. She fell off the curb mid-giggle and was nearly flattened by oncoming traffic.

But all’s well that ends well—she’s still around for photo-ops.

As for me—well, I’m still obscuring my nakedness. And you can take that figuratively and literally as well. My bare butt is never splashed across your screen because it’s always covered by someone else’s idea of a good time.

If I said it didn’t feel compromised by obfuscating myself I would be lying. I have, after all, stripped naked emotionally and vomited my soul across your computer screen, so what’s a little ass-crack between friends?

Yeah, maybe you’re thinking “That’s it? Your blog is the measure of your soul?”

No, you beautiful cynic—it’s the measure of all that I’m willing to share with the public.

And what are you going to do about it really? What am I going to do about it? Get dressed and cross my legs after you’ve heard me ranting about cunts and fears and desire and what I really think of how people write and fuck?


Aren’t we closer than that? Haven’t we gone deeper than that?

“But you don’t even know my last name…”

Well I’ve fucked and written and edited and proofread under these exact same conditions and let me tell you, fucking and writing are kindred when it comes to personal revelations…

Wounded flesh, marked flesh, story-time flesh defaced not with words but the breadcrumbs of life, of dreams realized and forgotten, of choices made or avoided…all crumbs I wish to follow with some but not with others, my own crumbs an invitation or deterrent depending on your point of view.

Depending on what keeps you awake at night.

I oftentimes read others flesh as adroitly as I read their words. Read me. Some do, others do not, and like words abandoned, misunderstood, sub-par, opaque, or dead wrong, sometimes-strangers can leave us much more denuded than we were originally found.

My skin-sack is impersonal when compared to what it contains. Contain. Container. It is mine and I appreciate its functions but it is alien as well. Marks, tattoos, and scars—I have chosen them to remind me of what is mine and what is not yours.

That is all.

Boundaries of ink, maps written with keloids and damaged dermises, and don’t all writers have them? Do we not all have moments when we abandon pen or keyboard, leave unannounced the ‘nevermore’ to hang in the air between us. Isn’t enough enough sometimes, or perhaps too much?

Leave off, my boundaries whisper.

Eat shit and die, my scars respond.

We are kindred, you and I, if you are familiar with such moments. It is more than Bokononism. And to hell with Vonnegut. He was too creative, too ethereal and philosophical to rub shoulders with likes of me.

We are a sum of our most exalted and derided parts. We are also querulous assholes if we claim understanding of other people’s parts through sheer comparison to our own.

Your map will read differently than mine. It may be written in your original language and not the common tongue. I like that. Now that I know that it’s true, of course.

If I were to unzip my skin sack for you I would startle you (maybe) by showing you (honesty) things that have never before been unpacked, my instincts urging me run and seek or shelter or to boldly unzip and stand there naked, inviting you to do the same, to look steadily, without either of us flinching.

Look. And look again.

Never stop looking.

And I will do the same.

11 thoughts on “On a Lighter Note…

  1. Thanks for this eloquent food for thought, Illian. Ive been reading your work for such a short time, and yet I find myself eagerly anticipating each new post.

    I am still scratching the surface of this literal and figurative nakedness, Illian. Especially in my writing. If I’m totally honest, I admit that I’m stalling my writing again, holding it at bay and trying to compartmentalise it by busying myself with every other task under the sun. But it’s not going away. I know that. Sooner or later, I’ll have to get naked 😉

    I’ve been meaning to ask…are you working on a novel or essays or something else? 😘😘

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I find it intriguing that you’re open enough to be comfortable with other people’s openness (some folks run in the opposite direction) without partaking yourself. You are, in some respects, the definition of liberal–utterly comfortable with other people doing what you yourself do not do. 🙂 I like that, but if you ever change your mind I’m all ears. 🙂

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  2. I got references to nudity, Vonnegut and honesty. When confronted by the power of all of them, perhaps honesty could be the most brutal.
    It seems to me that physical nudity, while supposedly more shocking, is honesty in its intention but power in its presentation.
    Vonnegut–well, I do love his ideas of being reincarnated with the same people again and again, and in the case of his duras (hopefully I remembered that correctly) dying chronologically close to someone who you are fated to be close together with.
    Are my observations deep or am I talking out of my pseudo literary ass?–sadly, I fear a bit of both, though I wouldn’t guess in what proportion. I wanted to write a reaction to this piece because I feel something powerful and I feel something speaking to me. I am just not sure I am articulating it–maybe I don’t have a handle on it yet.

    I love the confrontational tone–though, I do not feel confronted. I feel….. like you’re drawing people in.

    I will think about it some more.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I love everything about this comment Anthony. We are clearly similar. I don’t think you’re talking out of a pseudo-literary ass. 🙂 This comment reads as very emotional to me, and I think I understand the way your threads are woven here. I too love Vonnegut’s ideas on dying close to those we’re fated to travel with. I also understand the feeling of responding emotionally and struggling to articulate the particulars of those emotions. I feel like my blogs are the embodiment of that kind of chaos. 🙂 I look forward to hearing more from here, here or elsewhere. Have a great night my friend.

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