A Self-Guided Tour of Jonathan
Jonathan lay on the bed fully clothed. A foul taste festering.
The young man was dazed. Reeking.
The problem is domestic and solid and capable of swooping into horror at the drop
of a belt.
First you cook it and then you eat it.
But the stingy little bird of Jonathan’s self-acceptance may not offer royal corridors
of light under its incorrigible wings for the enlightenment of the self-inflicted
representations of uncertainty nesting in Jonathan’s self-perception.
Dazed and reeking.
Childhood Jonathans steam and bubble and fill the room with sweet smells while
foolish scientists attempt to determine if a desire-proof wall could contain the remainder
of similar desires.
The mystery of Jonathan’s tears is said to have begun with incriminating trembling
gestures. Followed by sneezing, from which Jonathan does not quickly recover.
Jonathan closed. Jonathan absent. Jonathan missing from the bed fully clothed.
Despite compatibility appearances, it’s not enough to keep the curious from discovering
the deception. Even if the problem remains domestic.
Nature’s not good at waiting. Nature’s not expecting another Jonathan. Jonathan,
on the other hand, is expecting his Jonathan. This allows further Jonathans to occur, but
sooner or later Jonathan is allowed to visit Jonathan.
The sun glares off the afternoon sea, making everyone before you on the deck into
a silhouette, a puppet theatre dancing out a story with its meaning hidden, even the
puppets unsure of their roles, but trying desperately to have fun in them.
Ah, but smell the ocean, my innocent. Which is the real Jonathan and which the
myth? If you place your hand at the confluences of your body, can you smell the ocean
it brings back? Can you swim in this ocean inside the ocean?
Of course you can, and you can feel the fingers accepting the reach of your tongue
as it draws them to your lips and in. The slow pulsing of your cheeks to the draw and
release, as if you were talking.
And, of course, you are.
Someday Jonathan will be allowed to go home now.
Perhaps afterwards you could ask for this gift.
Rich Ives is the author of Tunneling to the Moon: A Psychological Gardener’s Book of Days currently being published in serial @ Silenced Press. Lost? Refer to the Burrow Guide.