I am a poor excuse for a woman. I don’t paint my nails. I may have cut my hair off a little too short today. I was thinking Mia Farrow chic, I think I have gone more Joan of Arc patchy scalping. Ok, so it isn’t that bad, but no one should ever be allowed near hairdressing scissors when upset. I have been persuaded into eyeliner. I was never persuaded out of it, I suppose. If Keef can rock kohl, so can I. Somehow my lack of outward femininity is a lacking I have never been able to fix. I always wanted to be one of the boys. I like to think I can kick it with any guy, hold my own discussing the Yankees or the Warriors. Sometimes I wish I could just say fuck it and not be a woman. If I wasn’t a woman I could opt out of my own suffering and the unfairness of it all. It just isn’t possible. Woman runs through my body like words through a stick of rock, whether I like it or not. I wish I could run away from it, sprint. Who would want to opt into the attacks of the patriarchy if there was any other choice, yet there is no way of running away from the reality of being me. I know. I tried.
Realistically if I had been born later I would have probably picked up a neat label like ‘non binary’, turned myself into a theybe. It suits me as well as anything. Unapologetic dyke is a little old fashioned I suppose and not even truly accurate – even I prefer ‘queer’ for what little it means to anyone at this point in life.
I would rather be odd than fixed in my desires. Not that I have desires nowadays, but there is a label for that now too. “Fuck ’em Detroit…even if you are celibate!” My friend with her tell-it-as-it-is coolness always has a way with words and encouragement. I am not the highly sexed feral beast I once was. I am terminally disappointed with romance. My passion is now words and working. I want an apartment and to buy my son nice clothes. I want a good dog and a large television with all the channels so I can watch cartoons and smoke weed in bed like the good hedonist I was born to be. That is a label Ill accept. Nihilist. Hedonist. Sailor of clipper ships. Wierdo.
I sometimes get accused of writing like a man, which puzzles me. I wonder why? Is it because I am brutal in my writing? Is it my lack of finesse? What about my style doesn’t say ‘female’? I admit I rarely read female writers, and get left cold by most female novelists. If I could look into a literary mirror and see anyone staring back it would be my Beat Heroes. It never crosses my mind to want to write like a woman. I don’t even know what that means. I am not sure I even care.
That is not to say I don’t care about my sisters, about other women and their struggles and art. This hedonist just knows what she likes: Lou Reed and Hunter S Thompson, Bob Dylan and Old Bull Lee. Kerouac and Led Zep. I simply follow my pleasure to things which turn me on and get my own creative juices flowing. I am never happier than when I sit with a new book and a cup of tea and one of my little joints of haze or lambsbreath.
I am so tired, so lost today. There is nothing to take the edge off life. It is raw. It is an open wound. Just hold on, people tell me hold on. And I am holding. The only thing keeping me sane is writing. Writing the book, writing other people’s lives and stories. I can’t even pick up my guitar and play it when I want to. It isn’t allowed to play for very long in the shelter. I have to pick very quietly. That is some cruel and unusual punishment. My guitar is the only thing that has kept me sane for years…or whatever passes for sanity.
I know what I am. My suffering says I am a woman. The Patriarchy says I am a woman. I am just not a very good one, nor do I care to try and pass for a good woman. I would rather be bad. I would rather be untameable. I would rather be free from the expectation of society.
There is just no one out there who would put up with me that I would want to date, or even hold for a night or two. It doesn’t mean I don’t get lonely. Tonight for some reason I am lonelier than I have felt for a long while. I suppose lonesome is the price of my freedom. Doesn’t make it any easier. Doesn’t make it any less disappointing.