by Alison Tyler
From the introduction:
Some of this is a blur, of course. Even the clearest memories would have to be altered after all this time. I’m not so different from the average girl looking back on her past.
What do I have to help? Diaries and notebooks. Scraps of paper that I tucked into various books I was reading at the time. I’m a pack rat in many ways. I’ve saved so much. But some of it, some I only have to close my eyes and I’m back. Like that. Close my eyes and I can not only see a room, but smell it. Not only imagine the way my lovers looked, but touch them. Reach out and stroke their skin. Run my fingers over the fine lines of muscles, the hard bodies.
And yet I’m gazing on all this from a distance. My visions must be tempered by the experiences I’ve had since then, right? I’m not twenty-two anymore. There are images, though, that might as well be tattooed on my skin. They are so vibrant. So filled with endless rich color. Rubies and sapphire. Dark emeralds and violent fuchsia. A photograph burned into me forever.
Sometimes I wish I could write for days. Sit down and explain everything. Take you to the future with me so that you could fully understand the past. Instead, I do my best. I try to give you the moment. I try to hand it over, glossy, wrapped, like a present to open. A dream to climb inside.
For me, looking back is hazy. As if I’m watching something filmed underwater. Or grainy, like a movie from fifty years ago. But a gorgeous movie. A movie with depth. With resonance.
Thank you for sitting in that dark theater with me.
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