ó For Beth
...I know what eternity means now. Thousands of pages later, you are still thousands away, and this letter must go on and on until we know when to stop it. Somehow, I find myself apologizing even to my oppressor for creating this vast space between us. I wish we could talk together the way we used to walk together. In the Greening Fields. When there wasnít time to talk, as we followed the path that the endless grasshoppers and snakes parted before us. Even the field rats following our every step and bend made us feel important. Sorry again to drag you through all the curses that witch has been saying to you through me. I shouldnít stoop, though. Shouldnít resort to her level even where her level is more dignified than my own. Sheís made it an art defaming my character. Her ability to slander every insult into its own scandal is infinite. Iím so depressed. Hardly get out of my bedding until evening, or later. When thereís no time to bathe. Groping through dark halls lined with razor blades, perpetual potato chips peeling off my palms. I know I shouldnít dwell. I do have a tendency to internalize the more negative aspects of my surroundings without proper discrimination. I think we all do. I know Iíve been brave and courageous, but what I really need to do is stop putting myself in so many negative situations ó at least, resist the situations that leave little room for spiritual growth. Head dropping to the toilet from which I drink, the floor soiled by me and crawling with cats. Now Iíve lost my voice, too. It sounds kind of sexy, but difficult to talk. Funny, how the sexier we get, the more difficult everything else gets. Until we are useless. It truly is just the way I meant it in the last letter ó comely zombies vacuuming out cum toward our vacuous becomings. No oneís admitting it, but weíve all been generating a lot of mortal filth. Strapped to a cot with a motorbike chain, or monkeyed under this table rereading your letter while continuing this one. Which I keep meaning to send, but which must go on and on until I know when to send it. What I really think I need to do more than anything else is stand up for myself. And, on my own. Iím just not getting enough support here. Until your letter arrived, I havenít risked spending my nights alone. If I can just put myself in a more positive position, where the Hall of Razors wonít affect me so. If I can put one foot in front of the other, and then the other foot in front of it. If I can do these two things everyday before the Hall of Razors gets dark, I really do think I would be on my way toward feeling a whole lot better about myself. With daylight in the Hall of Razors, it will be easier keeping my chin up with my hands to their sides. Posture truly does play a key role in how we perceive ourselves. I know now, do internalize. Even when bleeding. No wonder the High Priestess deems her piss so divine from so high atop her altar. Which, when you get right down to brass tax, is still my table. Most of what she does, I think she does just to forego licking herself in the mirror. I mustnít stoop, though. Vindictive thoughts leave me so drained and short-circuited. Hated to have to discard my Windows XP installation. Just when it was looking like the ideal way to compile my myriad thought patterns and compress memories . But, I just canít risk crashing another morning in my own skull. So I am back to listening to blank tapes of white noise on my Walkman. The tapeloop silence is easy listening and does a hell of a job drowning out outside distractions that I might otherwise internalize. I do internalize, you know. It is vital that you know this, because when you come to resurrect my darkside you may have to do more than ring my bell. Maybe Iím just abusing myself in small ways, tiny tortures that crowd out larger issues. First, I need to come to terms with what I am and what I was whenever I did whatever I did to whomever Iíve now become. Maybe then, Iíll truly be able to put my Warlock Years behind me. I did fall hard. Fell like a lovesick King Kong, and itís high time I stop denying this. Prodded along with an electric stun gun, drenched unholy with urine. Mostly, it was a remark she made that made me so sensitive. Her coven sisters had taken to setting their watches daily to my erections. There was something mocking in it. This might be a projection, but I really did feel I was being controlled, rather than controlling. You werenít there, so you didnít see how they werenít making any real attempts to include me in their ritual. Not really. I mean, sure, I was the part but not a reciprocal part. When I brought this up to the High Priestess, she proved utterly dismissive. So I said, How dare they deem me so mechanical! then she said, ďWhy the armor?Ē So I said, It sweats the skin! then she said, ďWhy the shield?Ē So I said, Why thatís my sacred Masculine Medallion which is said to hold many ethereal powers yet unknown! then she said, ďGive it here!Ē I thought, ďDrop dead!Ē She must have heard this because she immediately said, ďI wouldnít want to meet you half-way.Ē The other women in her coven ó who had taken to calling me the most cruel, sadistic and manipulative person they had ever known ó all snickered. Our High Priestess then said, ďI shall take your so-called sacred Masculine Medallion and leave no more than a rotting finger in its place, around which your flesh shall forever feel itself the writhing center of your own unearthly decay.Ē So, I whirled around some and lost composure. So, did not see in the swamp of hands the tiny one that snatched my Medallion. So, could not hear much less deflect which curse our High Priestess spat under her breath. So, lost the powers with which to reduce their numbers while the coven dragged and mauled me down under the table to this very floor. Where things got icky. As I write this, she is circling the dungeon, a long knife diagonal across her cleavage. Her coven sisters following suit complete her circle. My Masculine Medallion suspended upon her forehead completes their legend, which captions My Fall. Ever since her ill-begotten rise, the whole Netherworld knows sheís been doing me. Sheís been purposely bad and out of line. Signing my face with her backhand daily. Mouth kissed shapeless and draining blood, my throat too tender to kiss. Sheís in league with the devil, so thereís nothing you or I can do about it. Running my name down to the ground and six feet under, spreading her plague of evil everywhere I might still count. Didnít want to meet me ďhalf-way,Ē she said. Meanwhile, the deadmanís finger she imbedded in my bosom has curled itself into a question mark, and now thereís no stopping the body from adapting to this foreign entity it sucks at. Iím so confused and out of sorts. Seems I am always looking around seeing things I really shouldnít be seeing. Now the covenís shadows grow incongruous upon the walls as they close in. Didnít think Iíd ever see an end to them torso toy-boys wheeled in for the covenís all-hands-on-dick pleasures. Now I know the end is me. A Venus Flytrap of legs surrounds me as the witches assist their High Priestess to her altar atop my table. Countless are the hands massaging their High Priestess, spreading her rounder than the table. Sometimes the sipping is so harsh, it sounds like nails down a chalkboard and itís all I can do to distract myself. From her off-shoot of the Chinese Water Torture, oils and bodily fluids drip through the planks of the table to the tune of my humiliation. Seems I am always looking up at the wrong time. Each splash jigsaw-puzzles the bond and loyalty I maintain for you, blurring this sheet of paper holding you close. I might be projecting, but I do think their allegiance grows in proportion to my degradation. That witch will stop at nothing ó or until sheís destroyed even the memories of my memories. Once when playing Spin the Bottle with my penis, they laughed as my penis kept pointing back at myself. I felt so lonely. Fearing to lose the lights that carry you my love thought to thought, I have taken to blinking my eyes every time you pass through me. With this mnemonic device, I shall no more forget you than that where there are bicycles, there are old reflexes. Where there are one trick ponies, there are old Pavlovian dogs. There is always change and sleep ó to be sure! ó but where there is rust and erosion, there will always be a manner to the matter and a meaner meaning of the meaning, and while we learn this, arenít we as well in the process of learning what eternity means? For example, I still recall every detail of that accidental night you visited my torture chamber. I never explained that when you came, I myself screamed so loud I glimpsed immortality. The insights of which I shall impart to you now. Electrodes wired to my testicles made my penis jump like a jack out of the box. I left my body all the more so. When I looked down, my wood was in such an angry erection it looked ready to rip free. As though it was ashamed of me, rather than me of it. Seems I am always looking down at the wrong time, as well as up. As the bees swarmed out my ears, there was both an instant and an instinct during which we traded places. This might be a projection of more significant issues. Or, perhaps it merely has to do with the physical circumstances. Others would have had a different take, a variety of takes even, but it was very important to me just the way it happened. There seems no end to exploring the epiphany, and I am grateful for how much you continue inspiring all my multiple understandings. When I returned to flesh, you were there, waiting. My throat harnessed to the floor, lips quivering. Lights of various hues bleeding through my lids. It was then I wondered if I could be falling in love with you, and was suddenly drunk from the notion alone. Icepick heels digging holes in various parts of my anatomy. Testicles shriveling under the unleashing of leeches. Body curling, head lolling to the side, and I was getting drunker and more in love every second. Wooed in reverse proportion to the erosion of my wood. The swoon didnít pass until hours later, when I received your letter. In an opened envelope. Thatís how I learned it was you who had passed through me. Your letter drew me back into the ecstasy. So much so, that even before reading it I could remember you, remember every little thing you said and did during that glorious night we spent. That ample paprika dusk that bled our shadows over the Greening Fields and Yellow Meadows of Martinique Bay shall never leave me. I hope you will never leave me. Memories can be so powerful, their skins touch back through every century. You gave me a papercut, and just like that my heart was bleeding for the both of us faster than it could pump. Just one more thing, I thought, just one more. . . . The tiny red line on my finger wept venereal tears that softened like vinegar down the middle of your letter. Every time I cry internally, I am wiping away a part of myself forever. Which part, I never know, but I have to feel lucky about that. On several occasions, Iíve felt an almost vividly static light about my shoulders. As if I were a choice away from beaming myself up or down to a kinder, gentler dungeon. Those are lofty moments when body, mind, Karma, and you my anam cara, eclipse for me. The difficulties Iíve had maintaining that balance is that I myself donít feel balanced, nor deserving. I know that Iíve been brave and optimistic, but what I would like to do is be more that way with you. I want to give of myself to you wherever you deem me needed. Find us a little cottage in a suburb somewhere. Not pay rent until the tractors roll in. It would be historic, only in an intimate sort of way. Sure do love the kind of smut weíd make. Can fortify the outside by positioning fake rifles through the windows. Bar the bedroom door and shoot away the key. Take the spit off the griddle and put it smack on our palms. Take the piss pot off the shelf and recycle our body fluids. To the very end. Or, until the bowels beneath us roar and our tongues unite as one dry sponge. My hands cuffed to your breasts, our bodies delusional. Foam in your eyes, something like Crazy Glue between our mouths. We will always be friends, but I think both of us want something more. Maybe we donít know what that something is exactly. But, I do think we want to spend more time together. Maybe we can sire and suckle us some little red-eyed hybrids of our very own. The third wheel to our personal militia. Maybe Iím still blinky from the electrodes, but I read your letter over and over, holding on to your words, singing your praises, and blinking. You have made me so warm, now even your letter sustains me. I wish you could actually feel the wings spring from my bosom and my biggest finger wash clean while I masturbate you. If ever I were to have a dream, youíd be in it for sure. Yes, you would be. Sometimes I donít think we really need to talk because we think so many of the same thoughts. Remember all the simultaneous phone calls and busy signals that were double-whammies to the both of us. You have made me feel such the Phoenix, so much so, I have had to fashion seatbelts to my toilet to keep grounded. Suddenly so afraid of the inexperiencial, of ejecting through my window into the brightest lights and defecating my dark, molecular ash upon the streets below. Better I wait for my mongrel spirit to return and complete its cycle. Mostly, I just donít want to risk losing any of the precious ground recovered since my fall, much less the pocket full of locusts that keep me grounded and humble. Instead, Iíve been saturating myself daily with a special ointment that they say seals in phosphorescence between the scales. Locking in my light like Franklinís Key of Electricity. Hate being superficial, but I hate all the more looking at the scales flaking off my arms, and the salt sprinkling from the spores of hair that once flew with ravens. I am only fooling my nervous system to believing that the body is mod, so that the mind will take heed and follow. Sometimes it truly is better to look good than to feel good? Already my hair is growing back, and thereís a loud hound in my belly. Last week, while flossing with your letter, I learned that with the right care and no end to patience I could file my teeth that way, too. Still, it will have to be you who sets me free. Donít know if Iíll ever be half the heinous highness I used to be. Donít much reckon Iíll ever reconcile being just another precarious speck of metal in this our perpetual corrosion. But itís not like youíll ever need to remind me that I canít go around draining my demon semen into any witch I damn well please anymore. That is, without consequences. Those were miraculous days back before I lost my powers. But, these days will never leave me. I hope you will never leave me. This point in time is where my life separates to each end of the Hall of Razors. At one end is My Master Our High Priestess, the other end is you. I confess my sense of direction has failed more often than I care to freely admit. But, even when repositioned by the razors, I feel I have always been walking toward you where you often stand beyond the open light of the door. For every road I shall ever walk along, I shall be forever walking alone with you, my eyes up and down upon you eternally. Sometimes our love is so special, it feels tenuous and improbable. Which makes me think itís too remote and impossible. No, I may no longer be your wondrous star of infinite possibilities in the universe ó which means at least I can swear with certainty I did not kill Nicole Brown Simpson. In the frothing backwashes of our time and memory together, I am yours to take. Another escape would do us well. Our lovemaking need never be actual, the copies are just as good. If you will appear to me now, if you will pull me under the mighty bosom of your goodness, through the lush rainforests of your life without edges, into your silvery pink wings of labium, I swear to you ó oh, I can promise you, it will not go under appreciated. . . .
ó Chris Custer