the missed spaces, the missed places, the missed times, the missed rhymes, the missed persons I could have been or will be, the fear that restricts me, the choices that elate me, the food that prolongs, the life that kills and opens and winds up and scares and tears and screws, inspires and heightens and pitches and rolls and drowns and crowns and takes hold of and molds and breaks and pours into and empties and burns.

and here we steal away together

Preface

The way I tell the story to myself

An aching afflicts me, an inclination to discern a harmony amidst the incongruous notes of experience. I perceive atoms which at times find sporadic stability. External energies appear to persuade their state.

I am in a current, created by a force which passed through this space long ago. The matter above me is warmed by an unknown source of energy. My current grows cooler, sinks deeper, moves slower. I am ignorant to both gravity and my own movement with the tides. I am oblivious to a release of an energy which will in time attract me, envelope me, destroy me.

Gaseous, dynamic atoms collide rapidly. Constant friction and agitation. I tell myself a secondary story, violent and unnerving. Liquid, balanced atoms flow with the vicinity. I tell myself a story of acceptance, tenderness and prospects.

The way the story told itself to me*

I was born in 1986 and grew up on the east coast of the US, in an in between space, equidistant from two great cities. I grew up in a modest, former farming town that was nonchalantly being taken over by the rich. Subdivisions replaced blueberry and hay fields.

I was the youngest of three children. Levi was the oldest, and Bekki was the middle child. And I had three best friends. Robin Hood our family dog, an English Springer Spaniel, was my first. Then Nikki, who lived at the other end of the road. Her and I were inseparable for our first ten years. And Rinny was the person whom I bridged that time between child and adulthood with.

A mom, a dad, three kids and a dog, on a square plot of land, which lay half way down the lazy hill of Old Smoke Road. I would move away at eighteen, to one of the great cities, to attend public art college. Four years later I would move across the Atlantic, to Germany, to Berlin. I ran there, away from a story I did not want to be a part of anymore, and I stayed for a story I believed in, but a story which was not my own.

* "The way the story told itself to me..." Zora Neale Hurton, American novelist, short story writer, folklorist, and anthropologist

17 Vignettes: Part I, I ∆Black Hole