Forever, or Whatever
Can a free-write about marriage be free or is it an oxymoron?
Marriage begs payment: pay for the husband to take the woman (cow)
off the hands of her father, as father grows tired of the girl-gone-woman (cow)’s
need to be fed?
A marriage is “between one man and one woman”.
Between? The space that separates things.
The between is________if we will allow it to be beautiful________the moment of stillness after
an inhale. A marriage is_________if we admit it is ugly________Midas, smirking, as he touches distance into gold.
I want to be a wife. Will I then (gone
with the wind) never go hungry again?
No, I want to marry hunger.
I am a better person when the money is running low in the bank and I turn
to creativity for calories. The anorexic’s dream: my body is eating itself and
I have floated up into a metaphor. I don’t mean I’m starving myself again.
That got boring and it never did land me a husband. I mean, when I’m close
to the edge of something, I remember alive is the adjective I most want to dance with before I go over.
We marry to chase pleasure. We divorce to chase pleasure. We marry to dare ourselves: go ahead, take
a fucking risk. We divorce ourselves to marry fucking.
It all takes place in golden in-between. Have you ever tried to tie yourself to someone you love?
The chafing is hot at first, and then maddening, and then there is
the grief: (s)he so close, yet you cannot crawl out of your own panting mouth
and into her ear.
If you want to be happy for the rest of your life, make an ugly woman your wife.
And yet I have yet to meet a woman who could wear the word ugly
and make it tell the truth. A woman is a person (not a cow)
whose very breath (breasts) make the word ugly tell lies.
I want to have a wife.
My body is red when I write this: red (hot), read (I see you there).
“A man may marry a woman under the condition that he need not feed her, the condition of not having to support her; that is not all; he may even arrive at an agreement with her under which it is she that feeds him, supports him, and teaches him the Torah.”
At the ball, where I will be, of course, presented to all the strapping young suitors, perhaps I should seek the one who will insist (s)he does not need to feed me. This way I will have a husband(wife) who leaves me hungry but does not leave me; is this the perfect union, wedded to longing, a poet’s commitment
to the chase? At the ball, perhaps I should stand with my skirts swirling around me and pronounce
to the throngs of would-be sweets: only those who will deny me need apply.
I am young and naive
and so believe that passion should (can) be permanent, I do.
(Why say it if you cannot have for the rest of your life what you want which is to be — every moment — wanted?)
And Midas crawls greedy back in through the bedroom window.
Elaina M. Ellis is a Seattle-based writer. In January 2010, she quit her day job to make poetry the boss of her. She offers workshops, live art events, creative coaching, and consultation to business and individuals who wish to invest in that which inspires & sustains them. Elaina received her MFA in Creative Writing at Antioch University in 2011. Her first book, Write About an Empty Birdcage, was released by Write Bloody Publishing the same year. In 2012, Elaina co-produced a poetry show with the Seattle Rock Orchestra and gave a TEDx talk about the power of creative collaboration.