I am always shocked when I fall in love. It is a beautiful, whinnying sort of agony. Like the look that a horse will get in its eyes when it is terrified; just the way they roll about wildly as if they are trying to stare into the backs of their skulls. Everything is just so still when it is not around. And calm. Uncomfortably calm. Like an ocean with no waves. I always wind up coming to believe that it has darted off somewhere and will never return. Or that if it does, it will be less than what it was. But then someone whispers just the right words. And their lips are the softest things. Fingers trailing across cheeks, skirting along thighs. Kissy face, kissy face, kissy face. Heavy breathing. Red faced. Those desperate, longing stares. [fuck]
And you’re right. It is awful and stupid and mean and mean and mean. Especially mean. SO mean. Ughh…
So if you are one of the many queers who feels apathetic about this upcoming Valentine’s day, you can rest assured that you are not alone. And you shouldn’t feel bad about it. There are some really valid arguments to be made for laying in bed and listening to Joy Division or SadGirl with a handle of vodka and a box of chocolates until Monday arrives. And if that’s your prerogative, I say go for it. Shoot for the stars, darling. Maybe you’ll land on the moon. I’m sure you would look positively adorable in a space suit. Of course, I am here to offer you an alternative to laying around and flirting with alcohol poisoning.
I don’t know your story. Maybe you’re socially awkward. Maybe you’re the one who is too gorgeous for their own good; the one that everyone wants to make love to, but that no one wants to take on a date. Maybe you fall in love with everyone you meet and shatter your poor smol heart over and over again. Awwww*~ Maybe you just want to play in the sheets all night and day and it doesn’t really matter who you are playing with. Well. It doesn’t really matter what sort of archetype you fit, or if you fit any at all. I am here to tell you that there is one person you can absolutely count on being there for you in exactly the way that you want them to, and you will be spending Valentine’s Day with them no matter who you are. It is fortuitous, no?
“Genesis 1:1 Love yourself, you stupid, stupid, stupid bitch.” –This wondrous human I know named Alison.
Yes. I am talking about you, you stunning creature. Love Yourself Endlessly. That is in the bible. It’s the first line, ok? That’s the holy word of Goddess. The Queen Alison Translation.
And I mean it. Maybe kick off this Valentine’s day by purchasing a new vibrator. An expensive one. One with all the bells and whistles. You can trust me on this, doll-face—no one is ever going to do it better than you can. Not sex. Not love.
Forget that your ex lovers’ eyelashes are probably still resting in among your sheets and pillows. Forget their scents like an inverse wolf. You never shrug off loneliness. It’s like love; it only goes away for a while. So own it. Tilt those sad, doe eyes upwards and bat those skinny eyelashes into flickering, sable neon. Slay the lot of them and ascend radically into self. Love every little pinprick. It is all beautiful. It is all yours.
And anyway, while the idea behind Valentine’s Day is, admittedly…exactly my aesthetic, the execution is just so hideous and odd. Take Cupid, for example. In classical Greek mythology, Cupid was referred to as Eros. And he was kind of a dick. What I mean to say by “kind of a dick,” is that he was more or less a psychotic, vindictive, and very much evil little demon that was widely feared and despised. He was generally much more interested in destroying love than creating it. He broke up families and ruined empires. A list of his exploits would require virtually every trigger warning that I am familiar with. And so, no. Eros didn’t so much fit the contemporary narrative of an arrow toting cherub who went zipping around the world, invisibly I suppose, inciting love in straight people.
Honestly though, all of that doesn’t bother me all so very much. What really gets me is the corporatized nature of it all. All the mass production. All those repeating patterns along the shelves. The vibe is just so sterile. A trip to any given grocery store and you will find it smeared right up against your eyes. By now, several hundred thousand shelves across the nation will have been filled with petroleum based commodities only to have been drained and then filled again like some bizarre plastic organ. And on the fifteenth, the overwhelming majority of it will be well on its way to an indeterminate corner of our ever-expanding network of landfills. And then all of that red stained merchandise will rot with all the rest of the refuse. Even the eight foot stuffed bears and heart shaped pillows will take this pilgrimage into the stinking, sopping rubble.
Slay the lot of them and ascend radically into self. Love every little pinprick. It is all beautiful. It is all yours.
Just a few miles from the landfill, we find the televisions all buzzing together. Fifty houses in a row and they’re all tuned in to channel 203. The network cuts to commercials. One by one, the pictures come and go; a series of hallucinogenic visions of heteronormative nuclear families with white skin and unreal personalities. Cars are passed out like candy on the screen, each wrapped snugly in a large bow. Africans died in the name of the diamond earrings that Fred now passes across the table to Becky to wear as a symbol of their love, when in truth, either would find distinguishing Franzia from Sutter Home simpler than cubic zirconia from a genuine diamond. The dialogue is sterile and inhuman, the director’s vision artistically indistinguishable from any given series of mismatched snippets from a Seventh Heaven script. The baby boomers just eat it up.
And so where does that leave us on Valentine’s day? Alone? Discontent? Still hounded by longing and loneliness?
Nope. Oh, no. Nope, nope, nope. It leaves us clawing for something real. Clawing for the perfect lover. The kind of lover that makes you feel terrifyingly happy and sad all at the same time. Like your chest is all filled up with boiling honey. That fearful, trembling warmth. That blistering frenzy. Somewhere out there, they are waiting. They are longing for your lips. They are clawing for you; waiting to fall deep into it and just melt and melt and melt.
Find them. Adore them. For me, please. Just adore. J’adore. *
And they, the peonies. And they,
the peonies. And
peonies—Sunni told me that they are like roses—
just like roses but
nervous breakdown. They are more
aware. I think this is why. Like,
just more aware
<3 I <3 love <3 you <3 all <3 terribly <3 wondrously <3 infinitely <3 so <3 happy <3 Valentine’s <3 Day <3 from <3 WussyMag <3
Hope to see you at the Black Hearts Ball.
And for all the sad soul’s wintry woes, a collab Meow Mixtape between Lola Bundy and Sunni Johnson of “Goth romantic” and 80s ballads about unrequited love. (above)
Juliet Awry Irises is a faraway gendered trans grrl whose fingers flick almost continuously through her hair. When she is not writing poetry or painting, she busies herself with splitting the veins of the holy western masculine wide the fuck open, amen.