Love is like sticking a morphine-infused needle in the arm for the first time. It is shocking and exhilarating. I feel as though I have slipped into a state, though not a comatose one. Love demands blood and bleeds for itself, out of a scepter and onto the carpet to remind me of my pain, similar to the times I spilled red wine all over the carpet in my white apartment back in Jasper, back at Cavell Apartments, between 2001 and 2003.

The blood is just a reminder of the future, more so than symbolism from the past. I am starting over. The notion of the distant past, so close in its emotional proximity and yet so far away in terms of its meaning, escapes from me like hitchhiker kidnapped from the side of the road for purposes other than travel. I am more the hitchhiker than the kidnapper, but manipulation is a part of love, and love's deception lies in its contradictory sense of mystery. Lovers demand honesty, and hate the expression of honesty itself, because honesty challenges their delusions. We love not for the sake of love, for giving and receiving love, or for the appreciation of love in itself. We love to reconfirm our delusions. We fall not in love with others, but ourselves, and the image we create of others in our name. Love, as defined, is contradictory.

Relationships require honesty, and without honesty, relationships cannot fail. Relationships supposedly need honesty for sustenance, but the emotional reception to honesty is often cold. People want to be loved for who they are, but refuse to show their lovers their real selves, and then balk at rejection and criticism, only to find themselves dumped for their lack of honesty. Deception leads to more deception, and lies are required to cover up lies.

The blood should symbolize the beauty of a fleeting moment, one that is tangible and real, like the palm of my hand, and not some fantasy projected onto me. I am not into fantasy, beyond the curve of a man's hips in jeans. There are no fantastical notions of love with me. Sometimes, love is fleeting and temporary, and gives way like plank wood to a better foundation laid down by another at some other time. Some relationships have lasting power, others don't.

Too many people refuse to see the forest for the trees. The truth is right in front of you. I want to be loved or rejected for me. At least that is honest. For another to love an objectified image of myself is for another to manipulate. I am not an object or fantasy. It is not my forte or expectation in life to consume myself with another person's expectations. Love is about the love of reality in front of me, and others, not projected fantasies and fairy tales.

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