22 06 22

After that, I began to make a wish when the impracticalities of life wronged me, but very cautiously. I did that to understand who I really was and what I actually wanted, regardless of whether my wish could possibly come true or was good or bad for me or for anyone else, because I didn’t know who I was most of the time.
I tried to see myself as consciousness that looked like me and whose speaking voice was based herein and censored by my crappy English but also out of my control like my ventriloquist. I used that voice to represent the public me. And then there was my secret self who took pity on how compromised I usually was and poached the wisest powers of my mind, then used a thought to say, in so many words, “I will grant you one wish, Dennis. What do you want?”
Then I would think about the question until it had infected me, revising and refining a related wish, first conceptually as a tryout to assess the consequence, were it to happen in the real world. If the wish involved sex, which it almost inevitably did, I would test myself by masturbating, cum, then reappraise the wish more puritanically and decide if my surpassing goal of cumming had overly influenced me or given me the equivalent of truth serum.
This process might go on and on for weeks, months, with one offhand in-process wish refining and dwindling until I’d built the single most intransigent, comprehensive thing I craved and that would never come to pass and that no one else could ever guess I wanted. And once I had decided on and made that perfect wish, didn’t get it, and accepted that my peace of mind was doomed, I thought I knew exactly who I was, and I stopped wishing for it.
I thought my wishing ritual would die away or be co-opted when I became a writer, or at least a writer good enough to do my thoughts some kind of justice and get them published and read. I assumed the writing thing was generated from the same impulse I’d had to pinpoint and set aside my deepest shit. I figured writing would just give that stuff a solid form and, if safely sealed into the envelopes of books, readers could solve me if they wanted. But that wasn’t true.
Instead, my writing merely subdivided me again. I became a semi-guy who dealt with other people nicely and another semi-guy who used the written word to challenge readers to accept the secret me selectively and still another semi-me who wanted something so abnormal that even the unrivaled distancing device of nuanced, airtight wordage couldn’t get it out to other people.
What the writing did was draw a stylized map to the general location where my wishes were impregnating. I tried to make the maps clever, funny, disturbing, and erotic so the things I wrote about would seem as scary or exciting to envision as they’d been to pen, sort of like the rosy illustrations with which rides are represented in the folded maps they hand you at the entrances of amusement parks.
I think the wishes always courted love. I think somewhere along the line I decided that I hadn’t actually wanted to be dead when I’d wished to die, and that I’d wanted death to love me enough to kill and take me. I don’t think I knew that for a long time, though. I think I thought the wishes I so time-consumingly constructed were about having raucous sex since that was the crux of what happened in them.
When I never thought I could be loved, or not realistically, or not by anyone real who had a choice, by which I mean people other than my family, which covers most of my life, I’d think up situations where the horror of not being loved, of being rejected by someone I could ostensibly pick out of the lineup of Los Angeles’s cutest boys, for instance, would feel the most intense.
And since cumming was the most intense outcome I knew, I made them hugely sexual, and, to try to make the blast as wild as I imagined being loved would feel, I made my fantasies as scary and chaotic to everyone involved in them as possible, but especially to me since I was real. I wanted the orgasms they produced to be like self-inflicted fatal wounds, or maybe more like being shocked back into real life by a defibrillator, I guess.

I wished
Soho Press 2021