|is that so
||[Oct. 17th, 2005|01:19 am]
new fiction: i am not exhausted. i am not exhausted. i am not exhausted. bush has been assasssinated, the check is in the mail, we are coming home, we love you, its over, we can all rest now.|
Suppose you had said the right thing, in stead of the wrong thing, which was, in fact what you said
Suppose you had said that noticed that at the table you were seated with the most interesting group of people, instead of the other strangers that nobody knew, but you were not a stranger, you had been friends with the bride for five minutes last summer, or the summer before
Who could remember these things
Suppose you had introduced yourself under a false name, so that no one else could find out—you know how these things travel, so quickly—that you had in fact been regulated to the strangers table, that you were, in fact, a little strange
Suppose you hadn’t made out with the bride’s brother, you meant to do it, of course, he was such a sweet kid, you think you’d met him once, maybe, or maybe not, who can keep track any more
Suppose you hadn’t sat next to him once the rest of the family was gone and said that you were Donna, and you had met him before, somewhere, of course he was part of the family, maybe it was a mistake, but wouldn’t he like some company, isn’t that what weddings are for us singles—you are single, aren’t you?
And suppose he had said no, no thanks, I’m not doing anything but being by myself right now, and honestly, that’s how I’d like to keep it, I’d like to be here by myself
But people are too polite to say these things
Suppose you hadn’t brought him the red wine, the kind that stains without even effort, effortlessly ruining things, suppose you had opted for the white, the dryness shriveling your chances of making out with the bride’s brother, who was handsome but not intimidating, suppose you had found that god awful box wine, but that wouldn’t do, would it, people are so judgemental.
Suppose you hadn’t spilled it, or he had spilled it, someone had jostled the glasses, in the make-friends way, had moved an elbow over, but who had done it? There’s no telling, weddings are like that, everyone is drunk or distracted. Suppose he had used the table cloth instead of his shirt cuff to try and clean it, the water making the stain fade but widening it across your chest, and his button scraping your nipple.
Suppose you weren’t angry about being at the stranger table, the only girl in the bunch, there were fourteen guests at the Stranger table but you were the only one who knew the bride was pregnant when they had agreed to get married, because you were the only one she told, it was an accident she said. Suppose your rooms had not been next to one another at that cheap hotel, so embarrassing, to know someone at a cheap hotel, to be right next to one another, to see her running down the hall and him calling after her—sarah! Sarah! And she kept running, and then she woke you up at four in the morning crying outside of your door, thinking it was hers, drunk as a skunk. An accident.
Suppose that had never happened.
Then your feelings would not have been hurt. Suppose she had not noticed. Suppose she had not watched you from across the room and when her brother’s head was turned she had shook her head, please no, once, suppose she had looked angry, instead of scared, suppose she had looked happy at her wedding, instead of tired, and thirty, instead of a fashionable twenty nine, suppose you had not kissed him just then, when you knew she would see him kiss you back.
Suppose she had had the baby.
You could never tell these days, how things are going to go, it’s strange, people are so hard to understand.