From Dyke Dialects / Lesbian Objects
Gerry Gomez Pearlberg
lesbian flirting is problematic. parabolic. potential is its premise but not its promise. certain are experts on portable flirting. certain flirt best while properly breathing. certain cannot breathe while flirting. certain find flirting second-nature. certain must think (or not think) before flirting. certain others must drink (or not drink) before flirting. some when flirting back away. some seek flirting for its own sake. some flirt with good reason. some flirt with no reason. sometimes trouble is the reason or anger is the reason or treason. sometimes desire is very much the reason. some want something to happen. some want nothing to happen. some want something to happen but not the something that happens. some want the same something and it is the something that happens. some want the same something but it is not the thing that happens. flirting is parabolic. potential is its premise but not its promise. for some an art form. for others a science.
A LESBIAN DATE
either does or does not have a pit which will or will not germinate and is or is not surviving its first winter to maybe or maybe not bear any kind of fruit bitter sweet succulent supple memorable flippant forgettable forgivable. that's the core and question of a lesbian date.
THE DOG COLLAR INCIDENT
The two blondes in one apartment on Mission Dolores identical but not sisters no lovers. On the glass coffee table a dog collar. "Where is your dog?" for the place is not furry noisy hasty. "There is no dog." But there is a wide. black. leather. dog. collar. nested against a very polished silver buckle. A classic case of collar. Nerve-wracking because both blondes are exceedingly attractive and hard to tell apart. Certain filaments are gathering certain carbonations glimmering I remain for a cup of cold soda (really just a sip) then a fast convertible drive alongside nodding palms with two blondes in one apartment on Mission Dolores identical not sisters no lovers on whose glass pedestal a thick blast of black-and-silver collar absorbs and re-absorbs its shockwaves:
Three rays of evanescence incident upon the soul.
OF A KISS
The Long Of A Kiss
The Short Of A Kiss
Let's start telling the truth about the risks of being a sailor. All that salt in the h/air. Around the lips. Everyone will see it and think "Lesbian." They will always call for extra Chapstick. For some there is an exclamation point at the end of the word Lesbian! Especially when tossed into the dunes. Sometimes (afterwards) there will be blood on your mouth or cheeks. Sometimes the blood of love. Sometimes the blood of hate. Sometimes depending on politics or madness sometimes depending on the location of the stars in her belly. You will be wind-tossed. You will need stamina and a good sense of direction. Night vision. A compass that glows in the dark. An intricate sense of the strenuous nature of the sea; its cruelty, its adventure, and always and ever the fact of chance.
Dubious foghorns murmuring in thick towels of fog will only sometimes save you. Most times it will be too late. Or the foghorn will have mourned you in a language you don't speak. Or the foghorn will have warned you in a voice you did not choose to recognize.
Think of all the rocks you did not see. Was it good, your never seeing them or did they kill you in the end? Or did not seeing them save you from something even bigger, worse, or better?
A sailor is a brave or stupid girl. Sometimes her tattoos are the most vivid and constant thing about her. But then she's underwater, arm-wrestling the mermaids.
YET ANOTHER SAILOR
Sometimes even switching hats with them. Green foam hats & hats of foam rubber.
"This is the attractiveness of art work. It is adventurous, strenuous, and joyful," the painter Agnes Martin said that not at lunch over mussels white wine ice cream and calzone but in a grey imported book. She also said, "Interruptions are disasters." It is a very strenuous thing to stave off interruptions. You do not have to be an artist to stave off interruptions. You do not have to be a lesbian to stave off interruptions. But you must be physically and mentally fit to stave those kinds of interruptions off and keep those kinds of interrupters at bay.
Staving off interruptions is an exceeding challenge. If you insist simultaneously upon politeness plenty so. If you insist on electricity even triply more so. Gertrude Stein did not get electricity until 1914. She wrote at night by candlelight. Exuberantly prolifically absorbingly restoringly. The American language restored in the darkness restored by a candle restored by a poodle sending thought waves up the spine. Never restored by distraction. Nor by interruption.
We do not hear much (at the gym) about the athleticism of making art or of making anything that does not lead directly to physical prettification or financial gain. Let us, O let us hear more of that mental adventure, that strenuosity, that joy.