It is wrong to listen to your own echo, but the skin of everything I knew before was falling off of me, and I thought I saw my heartbreak everywhere, infecting the land, so I did it anyway. I stood on the highest plateau and I projected beauty for my own good, injected medicine into the colors, drew meaning in circles around the hills.
I did not know how to run to it, put my arms around it. It was such a silly thing: I thought happiness was supposed to come to you. I thought you were supposed to stand and wait for it.
What are we? I wondered if this was also a chance to explain ourselves, to draw their attention away from our parts, and the fact that we were buying supplies to get drunk in a room where they couldn’t or wouldn’t.
I did not know how privileged I was to use the difference of another continent to heal my personal pain, because that was not how I was thinking. I was not thinking. I did not want to think. I wanted to erase.
We were all young and idiotic and weak, pushing against all fractions of this city: its past, which we had absorbed and romanticized; its present, perfumed and confused and hostile; and its future, which was unfolding over old buildings in clean metal slats, shutting us out.
I got a tattoo because I grew up being told I was special, and no matter what I do or what I look like—it seems my body is the only solid thing that no one else has. To brand it with these tattoos is only the proof I can find that I was not lied to. I have become a walking, talking platform for images and slogans, I know this. I wish to make the images a physical reality. In a world of instant, throwaway interaction and hyper-stimulus, I crave permanence.