Arthur Meiselman

From Madelin de Rumba (AviarPress 2009)

Scene4 Magazine  inSight - perspectives on arts and media
writings: monologues

March 2012

I am exotique... no? I am passionata... eh? I am a mujer without hair... I am desire with fire... I am woo-mahn...  I am love... I am sssex... I am crazy... muy loca!

Crazy... and tired. Hola, am I tired... of all the bullshit dripping from their faces. The two-faced looks... the two-faced talks... the this-is-the-way-I-am-today, and tomorrow-is-another-day. Oh yes... I'm tired, but not too tired to go on living, to go on dancing, to go on f...

You know, I got married once. He wasn't my first man and he sure wasn't my last. But I married him... tall, dark, handsome phoney-baloney who thought he was Orson Welles. No... that's not true. I thought he was Orson Welles. He thought he was god's gift to me.

What a straight up married life we had. And there was some love in it. Then he got bored and I got boring. He was a dreamer and I was a sleeper. He was a rat and I was a mouse. He was smart and I was dumb. And when I got smart, he got numb. Ha! I got a life and he got a wife. Man, was I good looking... can't you tell... real good looking. So what's a girl gonna do. Hey, what is a man anyway? A hunk of meat, a stick of skin and blood? Does he make the sun come up? Hell no! But he sure can make it go down.

Hey... how old do think I am? Pretty old? Older than you think? Yeah. The body wants to give up... wants to sag to the floor in a quiet mess. But not me. See... this is me inside. I'm in here kicking and juicing... I'm breathing hard and trying to breathe harder.  And until this silly shell finally collapses,  I'm a whirling, twirling, stomping, romping, kiss of a woman... a big, wet, kiss of a woman. Hey... want to know how to make time stand still? Keep moving!

Dancin', I'm dancin', my legs are in the air
Movin', I'm groovin',  there's color in my hair
Isn't it exciting that I simply want your body dripping sweat
You're panting.
Isn't it exciting that you simply make my body very wet
I'm panting.
We're dancin', we're dancin', your balls are in the air
We're movin', we're groovin'... phew, your dust  is in my hair.

How old am I? I'm older than my father was when he died. Man, there was a man. Gorgeous, a lover. He had it, he knew it, they knew it... he couldn't keep his pants on. He took every woman that came his way. He gave them what they wanted and they gave him every drop of passion they could squeeze out of their tongues. He left them dry because he drank them up like they were banana daiquiris. He was a vampire, a banana-daiquiri vampire who left each victim in a glass full of crushed ice, with a smile on her face and a maraschino cherry between her legs. He was gorgeous. My mother didn't kill him. I didn't kill him. He married another woman, a gray-faced woman and gave her a daughter and set them up like a firing squad. They just shot at him and shot at him until they filled him with so many holes you couldn't see him any more. Why? Why did he do that? This Latin lover, this hunk of filet mignon, this woman's man. Why? Got afraid... that's what did it. Couldn't take his eyes off the clock. Stopped moving. But not me! I'm his daughter but I'm a lot further along than he ever was. And the only hole in me is the hole of holies, the pit of purpose, the cave of candy, the mouth of mystery, this garden of liquid gold.

Did I tell you I was married? Yes, I did. And when it was over, and he went on to another adventure, and the kids we had went on to theirs, I started moving again.

I was free. A little sinus-drip of guilt now and then, but I was free. All that time... ten years later, twenty years later you turn around and say: What the hell happened to the last twenty years. It's like waking up in the middle of the night with your covers on the floor and the heat off. It's cold... and dark... and very lonely. Why lonely? Because you're finally left with the only person you can trust... yourself... and you don't know who the hell she is... because you never met her. Comprende? 

What happened to the last twenty years? It's the Rip-Van-Winkle syndrome! Ha! It's the Night-Of-The-Living-Dead in the morning. It's gone and you're naked... oooh... and either you wrap yourself in a K-Mart housecoat full of regrets or you run your hands over your body and say: I like this, oooh... this feels good. What happened? This is what happened. You just... honored your family... you just... respected your culture... you just... did the right thing. Bullshit! It's fear, woo-mahn... it's fear. Afraid not to go to college. Afraid not to take that job.  Afraid to go on that date. Afraid not to go on that date. Afraid to fuck. Afraid not to fuck. Afraid to light a candle, close the bathroom door, look in the mirror and say: You... you're me. My eyes to your eyes, you're me. Fear... that's the train-ride that takes you through all of life's little PMS's until you reach the final stop: Sagsville. Everything droops, your mind droops and you wonder what the hell it was all about. Hey Dr. Alzheimer, where were you when I needed you?

Fear makes the world go round
Fear lays your back on the ground
If you will grieve that he will leave
Fear makes... your world go round

It's fear... yes it is... indeed it is! Twenty-four hours a day... seven days a week... month in and month out... year over year. It's the lipstick and mascara of your mind.  All the roads lead into you and then they're plastered shut on the inside. Fear... that's the enemy. Where did it come from? Who knows and who cares. But it's there, when you're awake, when you're asleep... poking you in the gut, making your mouth dry, making your pants wet. Shouldn't, wouldn't, couldn't, didn't, oh my! Fear... how do you get rid of it? You move, my baby, you dance and sing, bigger and louder until all you hear is your own voice, until all you see is the nose on your face and the light in your eyes. I did!

You know I think it all unraveled when people stopped dancing together. What a shame.  Just think about all the different scenes and reasons and times that people just...  got up and danced together. It was a way to connect. I touch your hand, you touch mine. I hold your arm, you hold mine. I see you, you see me. I smell you, you smell me. And then we move together, try out some rhythm, feel the energy, feel the... feel!

So what did I do? I whined... I moaned... I even cried. Then I got a job.  I got some money. I looked in that mirror and I got a life. Ha! I don't want to talk about all that  junk, all that waste of time. I don't care how much money you stick in the bank . I don't care how many dresses you buy, how many tv shows you watch, how many trips you take. I don't care about how hard you try not to be bored. There's only one thing that counts... loving and being loved. Man, woman, whatever. You know it, I know it, everybody knows it. Wall Street, Rodeo Drive, Michigan Avenue, Champs Elysees... it's all the same when you're just standing around picking your nose. No more truth than that.  It's a journey, this life we live, isn't it? A long search for connections... a long search for him. For him!

My first him was Manuel. 

A body like this with shoulders like this and it all came to a point... here. And what a point. We went out, we dressed up... it was dinner here, the clubs there, my bed here, his bed there. But after a few months, we were deaf and dumb... he was deaf and I had nothing to talk about. Besides, he drove a truck!

Now Peter was different. Thin, wiry, very smart, very hip. He could talk... and sing. He also slept a lot and thought I was his live-in cook. He was divorced too, so he'd been there. After a while, when he got very comfortable and felt very safe, he started playing fantasies. You know what I mean? Muy kinky... I can get into that... but stinky kinky? You can believe we didn't have too many friends. So one night I created a fantasy... he was to be a dirty, old magician and I, a clean, little princess. When he began to conjure and slobbered out the magic words... I said "poof" and disappeared... for good.

Ralph was rich. Awfully, terribly rich. And he was elegant (a rare commodity today), and kind, and gentle. He loved to give me gifts. He loved to take me out, take me on trips, make brunch on Sunday mornings, drink champagne on Monday nights. He loved to love me and I wanted to love him. I did, Ralph, I really did! But Ralph was 81 years old, and I was afraid I'd break his ribs. 

One after another... searching. Connect... then alone, empty. Manic-depressive, high and low, up and down. It drains you... it draws the blood to your feet and the fat to your hips. It makes you feel like a library book: good to read but always on loan. Check in and check out! Until one day... I found him. Him! 

He was... how should I say it... meant for my skin. He was passionate, as I was passionate. He was sweet beyond the taste of ripe mango. He was all the man to all of my woman. know what I mean? We could look into each other's eyes and see the years that passed behind us... the good times and the bad, the pleasures and the pain, and we could laugh, oh how he could laugh and I could laugh, and we could love. It was.... how should I say it... delicious... we tasted each other hour after hour, day after day. And we danced, we danced until every inch of our skin touched.

Not a bad word between us... not a mean moment. If we both had to die, then, right then, it would have been all right, all right. Perfect!

Why am I telling you this? Why do I care that you hear this? Because you are as poor as I am. Because like me, you were born bankrupt and we spend our time, our lives trying to break even, to get, a little bit of credit. So when one of us finds a piece of treasure, a piece of glowing gold... it must be shared. And I share this with you.

This grand love, this two of us... this me, Madelin, and my Tomas... Lina and Tommy, a match, a couple, a hot, breathing, melting of two bodies and two minds into one beating heart. For all of the weeks and months and years (there were only two!) that we were together, it was as if we kissed for the first time, over and over again. Can you see it, can you feel it? Could you live it? I did!

Then where is he? Here? No. Back there? No. Gone? No. I'm gone! It ended, this glory of my life, because I went, left, walked away. 

How could this be? Like a caterpillar in a cocoon I broke free and kept changing my skin into a more and more beautiful butterfly. And when I finally found a shell and wings I could slip into that made me feel exciting, and exotic and... expensive...

That's where the trouble was. You see... my Tomas, my Tommy had never changed. It was his shell I slipped into, but he never slipped into mine. He could have gone on forever (as long as his hormones held out). He danced in circles, from first time to first time... but for me, the rhythm would change and we had to change the way we moved. We had to!

Ay, mi Tommy... you wanted everything, forever... so much for such a long time. One never-ending roll of the dice! And if our luck ran out, and we went round and round and never got the brass ring... and the merry-go-round stopped... and we were two strangers instead of one love... then it was all for nothing... only a memory that can't be touched or felt or tasted. 

I loved you, mi Tommy, as I love the air that I breathe. I wanted us to go on, like two flowers on the same tree. Blowing our pollen over each other... each with our own sweet perfume, each with our own face to the warm sun. How could you want me to fold my petals into yours... forever?

Because you're like a goddamned snail... all you can think about is poking that hose up and out. Me... I'm like an oyster. I take it all in but I need to push it out again to keep it moving. I love oysters!

So where does that leave me? On my toes, sisters. Open to the world, my brothers. I hope I never see him again. He almost got me off the path. Not him and not my father and not my ex-husband. Ha!! I've got my work, new things to learn, new people to meet, new living to live.

Dancin', I'm dancin', my legs are in the air
Movin', I'm groovin', there's color in my hair

What did I tell you... all that counts is loving and being loved. Man, woman, whatever.

How can you go wrong? The last count I heard was six billion people-persons on this Earth. And at least half of them are of the male persuasion. Here I am...

Persuade me.

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©2012 Arthur Meiselman
©2012 Publication Scene4 Magazine

Arthur Meiselman is a playwright, writer and the Editor of Scene4.
He also directs the Talos Ensemble and produces for Aemagefilms

For more of his commentary and articles, check the Archives
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Scene4 Magazine - Arts and Media


March 2012

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