Tag Archives: infidelity

“That”

We begin, as all things do, with building: ambient noise and the revving of a motorcycle engine, before ascending piano notes come up, repeatedly rising up the scale without ever truly resolving. Soon the feedback begins, and the heavy, distorted guitars follow in suit, guided by the steady crash of cymbals and booming snare drum snap. The lead guitar comes in wailing, spilling feedback and harmonics all across the soundscape.

And finally, nearly two minutes later, everything stops. A moment of calm, accompanied by a gentle piano, tapping out a loose and airy I-IV-V progression, as our hero makes the first of his anthemic refrains: “I would do anything for love.” And so he proceeds to describe in detail those very things that he would, to the harmonious twinkle of ivory. “But I won’t do that,” he finally concludes as the electric guitars come ripping back into the song, ringing out their reverb in steady whole notes while the snare drum sets the pace with on every 2nd and 4th beat. The louder instruments temporarily pull back as the song drops down to the relative minor, suggesting a darkness within as our hero articulates the struggles he has faced, the constant challenges he has been forced to overcome in order to do those things — any thing — for love that he claims that he would do.

But then it returns, ever so briefly, to a soft, piano-led plea, returning to a major key, before returning violently once again to the Ionian mode, battling cacophonous feedback as our hero casts aside his hardships and howls out a solemn vow against a painful diminished chord that as long as he lives, he will always make good on that aforementioned:

“I would do anything for love,” he reminds us, returning to the soft lilt of the piano, this time with a slightly more rhythmic weight behind each note and a gentle chorus of angels lifting up his voice. And each phrase is punctuated by a bombastic burst of guitars as the chorus turns around and resolves once more to his oath: “I would do anything for love — but I won’t do that” and we don’t even care what “that” is because we’re him, we believe him, we believe in him. He repeats his mantra more and more as the soft tap of the hi-hat cymbal continues picking up velocity, until the chorus of raucous returns to carry him through that declarative refrain, accompanied by the glowing harmonies of seraphim.

The phrase repeats, and repeats again, until you’ve almost had enough — when suddenly the song returns to the unresolved Ionian buildup that we heard at the beginning, only driven this time by a steady rock n roll pulse. And again, the song pulls back to a quiet accompaniment as our hero returns to the darkened thoughts of his own internal struggles. But his voice carries on, the snare drum gets louder, and louder still, each hit positing an exclamation mark upon his words. Once again we progressive through the familiar patterns of the song, heaping greater and greater upon the reverb of every word, until finally, that diminished chord returns, its dissonant vibrations sending sickening waves through our skin as the drums pull back to slow down the reveal that yes, he would do anything for love! And the chorus cries along, their rich harmonies ripping through the heavy wall of raucous sounds, bursting through the air in halftime as if thrust into a climactic slow-motion moment, a frozen frame against all odds, against the violent volume of sonic chaos shunted into some melodic order, and for just one moment, the world stops spinning and we see true love in its finest form.

As the dust clears away, our hero finds his mate, and she sings along with him, taking in his melody as if her own breathe and returns it, finding affirmation in the sound. Until finally, as the song and the world fall apart around them, he makes it abundantly clear, through all her hesitations, uncertainties and exceptions: No, I will not cheat on you for love.

And that’s the one fucking thing he won’t. He won’t fucking cheat on her love. Which is such a fucking cop-out, because of course you’re not going to cheat on someone. That’s like the basic fucking rule of being in love. You went through 12 minutes of some of the most glorious fucking operatic rock n roll music ever written — just to tell her that you wouldn’t cheat on her to make her love you? How would that even work?

I’ll take the words right out of your fucking mouth: fuck you, Meat Loaf.

Sorrow is a Crafty Madam

Sorrow is a Crafty Madam,

confined by no red light.

She’ll turn any Mrs. Adams

into a woman of the night.

Sorrow is an Old Brothel Marm,

her customers diverse.

Although they never come to harm,

they always leave her feeling worse.

Sorrow is a Ruffle-clad Pimp

cruising the crowded streets.

Johns often curse the Velvet Imp;

his girls aren’t paid to be discrete.

Sorrow is a Sex Party Host

with attitudes unbound.

Her ribald guests all toast and boast,

though never with their wives around.

The War on Marriage

The War on Marriage won’t be waged with fighter jets or green platoons. Instead we’ll see soldiers suited up in homogenous suburban camouflage, blending in to raid their gated communities. There will be suicide bombers entering into self-destructing civil unions; dirty bombs that poison minds, infecting them to branch out to something more than Missionary style; bazookas that blast through yards and scorch the earth of our otherwise pristine lawns, shattering our picket fences; and billowing clouds of chemical warfare, suffocating our souls until we love who we can’t help. POWs contained, tied down with wedding rings, and tortured well beyond the limits of the Geneva Convention by daily household chores and a mortgage; those who refuse to cooperate are forced into a 401k. The fear that fills our hearts and minds will be justified once it turns to nuclear warfare, when loving, functional, nuclear units are dropped from the heavens to lay waste to the idyllic lives that previously plagued the neighborhood. Once those nuclear family bombs detonate, it will only be a matter of hours until the war comes to an end, and those of us who survive will be forced to rebuild, digging ourselves out of the apocalyptic ashes of this post-coital wasteland.

“Which One?”

They found the bar on Yelp, which all three had agreed never to tell anyone. It was just a few doors over from the restaurant, and the night hadn’t felt over yet.

After succumbing to the pull of a third round, she goaded her boyfriend with words and elbows to tell Sid the story of when they had watched a drunk girl fling herself at him. “Like I wasn’t even there.”

Neil dutifully ran it down, through the confused phone call the next day. “I let Carol answer. Short call.” They all laughed, loud enough that people at the bar looked over despite the throbbing bass. “My buddy Barry at work, when I told him, he had the best reaction. He was so mad at me for giving her my real number.”

Sid leaned forward, the sofa cushion sliding under him. “Why?”

Smirking, Carol said, “Barry’s a douche.”

“He thinks infidelity is inevitable.” Neil didn’t make it clear if he was issuing a correction or giving support. “And he thought I was doing it wrong. He was all, ‘Dude, what are you doing? You get a second phone, keep it in your car, only check the messages.’”

“Again, like I wasn’t even there.”

Shaking his head, Sid sat back on the couch to look more relaxed. “A second phone? Really? That gets found. Google Voice made that outdated.”

Carol nodded and pointed. “Yeah, totally. And anyway, you can set your phone to automatically delete or hide certain messages.”

Sid looked at her across her boyfriend. She turned away and sipped her Moscow Mule. They both knew they had been a little too ready with this information. He rubbed his thumb across the raised letters of his beer bottle. They could only hope Neil hadn’t noticed.

Neil nodded along to the Kanye song that had just started, without seeming to realize he was doing so. “Yeah, man. It would get found. That’s some Walter White bullshit right there.”

She insisted on paying when they closed the tab. At each red light during the drive home, Sid took out his phone and balanced in his hand. Each time he stopped himself from sending her a text.

Every Girl is an Apple

Baby, can you read this mind?
Because I won’t say a word.
I’d rather hide myself inside
of this ruby-tinted world. But if you
looked behind these colored glasses,
you would find that darling, it’s not
love, it’s just another trick of the eye.

When I dream of Jean, prior to
the goblin Queen, it’s the thought
that counts on me to cheat.
But you will always find me in
this white hot room for three
keeping Frost and fire waiting
willing on their knees. You see,

every girl is an apple. Yes, every
girl is an apple. Every girl
is an apple in my one red eye.

Marvelous girl, let me enter
yours; I’ll show you mine. Just know
that I keep one foot out the door
and in her mind in a fantasy: I lose
control of you and then escape,
then when you’re gone I tell myself
that it’s too late because every girl

is an apple. Yes, every girl is
an apple. Every girl is an apple
in my one red eye,

                                           and if looks
could kill, then this could be love
-ly to see you again, in life
or ’til death do us part.