In the dark with half a face bold from whiskey in dim lighting, a man, whom I was surprised spoke English in these smoke-glazed Colombian surroundings, I told him I was a writer. A title, a label, new, a fresh definition of this voice that once lay quietly private, so pompous a name but I wanted it, known, and perhaps titular, but the word rolled off my tongue like sweet and his eyes justified its saying. When asked what kind of writer I am I never know how to reply; not an essayist or novelist or fiction connoisseur, not technical nor journalistic. I suppose poetic lends its liberation to what I do, but I fucking hate limericks and I can’t stand structure, rhyming makes me nauseous and I could go with free verse, prose poetry, conceptualism, but it sounds so fucking conceited and sometimes I vaguely say “I write about life” and that’s enough for some people. I go with poetry this time and he asks me to recite a poem. In my drunken haze I roil at the request and light another cigarette, the flame a beacon in a consuming darkness that was threatening to linger until morning. I don’t know how to explain myself and trip over several ways to say no and end with “Let’s take a shot. You can look at my blog later.” Poetry, my poetry, ugh – no, my words, are not necessarily those meant to be spoken aloud, in fact many times are better left not. I liken them to parasites, to sickness, something expelled. When a piece hits the page, hits the computer screen, as soon as it has left my mind and traveled out through the tips of my fingers, it is no longer my responsibility – it is not my responsibility to care for, to memorize, to maintain, to obsess over, to control as it works its way into the world; most times I’ve forgotten the words as soon as they’ve been released from the grip of my brain. These words, even the ones I’m putting down right now, they are something belonging not to me but to an other, perhaps something to be absorbed and manipulated for meaning, or maybe not, sometimes these words are just better set free to explore than burrowing inside of me, eating acid-like away at my conscience as it attempts to comprehend their supposed importance. Sometimes when I am sitting at home, alone, and interacting with my self, I say “I am a writer” and it sounds to me like “I have cancer”. Not in the sense that I seek victimization in mortality, but that I feel as though this state of being is slowly consuming my life in irreparable ways that separate me from normality; these words as some sort of separate entity commanding space inside of a shell that simply seeks to exist for fun; sometimes even purposely directing its host away from content – as in happiness, simplicity in existence. I cannot explain this to the man in the dark in the bar with his literary degree and skepticism, mind swimming in alcohol and the exhaustion of 4am. I cannot tell him that this last shot is an escape from those words, from all words, from inquiry and obsession, that all I want is to forget about my brain and focus on my body and its corporeal ability to glean pleasure from life. That I’d been dreaming about the primitiveness of us, the archetypal us, naked since I’d born lust in my life. I can’t tell him this because my tongue is thick and my throat dry and I am tired and on the edge of lethargy, and the image of another man, a man who controls a good portion of the words that dangle at my fingertips, remains imperiously forged in the fore-center of even my drunkest mind. So I take another sip of whiskey and fall out of conversation.
– Jaime Dyna La Mondain