I Tear A Hole In Heaven / 6 November 2002

I tear a hole in heaven with a pair of nail scissors, scraping my initials against its innards in a font called Frustratingly Oblique. A hand reaches down and takes me roughly by the shoulder. The telltale pop of dislocation — that stays like that till you shape up, God says, his voice thin and pot-scarred, Ometecuhtli — aka Ometeoltloque, Ometecutli, Tloque Nahuaque, Citlatonac — the creator god, god of fire, androgynous master of duality, the unity of the opposites.

And I’m howling like nobody’s business, and the pain is operatic, ridiculous, blood seeping between my teeth, legs twitching, a kind of glacial nausea — except it strips away all adjectives, all metaphor, and for once my writing is just one clean line: AIIIIIEEEEEE. And then not even that, just Pantone 202.

up I swear I will shape up I swear I will shape — a seamless loop pouring out of my head. And Ometecuhtli makes absolutely no move to help me, says: You remember that time, standing on top of an office building on Montgomery Street in San Francisco? And Egils saying you have to be prepared to make sacrifices? That if you’re serious about it, you have to give up the things that other people have? And you were all: Sure, yeah, I know, I know, smiling and nodding, not even really thinking about what it meant?

And he’s gone, back up in the clouds, the curtains closed behind him by spear-wielding temps, and my shoulder hurts even worse than before if you can believe it, and I’m writing this with my left hand as best as I can, and I’m wondering if the transcriber will be able to read it, if she’ll mistake tears for teeth. And I get it, I get that it’s easy to make sacrifices for something that’s small and benign, something that’s a joke or a gimmick, something that dissolves and is gone.

Joshua Green Allen

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