Eliot Hudson is an author and singer songwriter. He's earned two Masters Degrees (Creative Writing & Modern Literature) at the University of Edinburgh (Scotland) and has studied under Rick Moody. Hudson's latest short story Russian Dolls is included in Mystery Weekly Magazine's June 2019 Issue. His latest poems are featured in Gravitas (Volume 18.2), The Book Smuggler's Den and Castabout Art & Literature. Hudson has an upcoming short story in Cleaning up Glitter and Helen Literary Magazine will be publishing three poems and a short story of Hudson's this fall.

Ago, lovefat, listless and sinsick: The Vulnerability and Toxicity of Chauvinism

by Eliot Hudson

A kiss is speaking to someone but really close so you’re feeling the tongue tell words in a language unique to every person. 

Some people’s language is soft like kittens lapping up milk with little laps of their kitten tongue. Some are slobbery dog kisses and some think kissing is a competition. Some people kiss like shattered windshield glass, and others like timid children. Then there are those that kiss like gentle people who are secretly rapists—while others kiss like rapists who are secretly gentle people! Then there are the kisses like summer stick and sunburn, rash and lotions; and others like a bundled-up December.

And I can’t walk into that room anymore.

I can’t love again because my love’s in the room that I can’t walk into.

Kirsty had feet like a bog and hair like a spiderweb and I fought and resisted being consumed by the spider at the center of her web. She made me notice, people don’t go and smell flowers anymore. They’re more likely to go smell anti-stress soap that smells like flowers.

I haven’t showered today and it’s starting to stick in my grundle. Gooch. Nifkin. Many words for it. But that’s a place where it looks like they sewed two people together. The sexy part and the disgusting part. It was that location that made Plato believe all people were hermaphrodites and “love” was trying to find our separated-hermaphrodite-other-half. Science tells us that scar between the legs is where our genitals finally formed while we were developing in the womb. Personally, I think that scar is where two different people come together to make one person. Like you were tickling my two halves {my good and evil sides} with your fingertips and I liked it. 

I said keep going.

You said you’re concerned that your ass and thighs were becoming like your mother’s and I was concerned too because your mother’s ugly. 

But that’s not fair, you lost weight to fit into your bride’s dress and I gained weight because I’m depressed. And the only thing you ever really lost was your gerbil and you would cry for nights on end while my mother attempted suicide. But how is that your fault? And why does seeing a girl you once loved hold a baby in a Facebook photo makes me question if I’ll ever be really ready? It makes real for a moment what could have happened, as I notice the glint of the hospital light on your fingernails. How you’re still bleaching your hair and still have that wince of fear in your eyes, and for a brief and disgusting moment it makes me wonder what panties you have on? Have I seen them? Did I buy them for you or with you, or do you still wear them, saying this could have been yours, on Facebook?

Those pictures of you on the beach are sexy. I remember when we were on the beach and I never knew you looked so good in a black and white tank top against your sunburn. Uh! And Annalisa DM’d me. We never even had sex! Just worked with her. It’s unfair…I forgot how annoying your laugh was and how thin your legs were, which was sexy, but your calves were unshapely—at the time I liked chicken bones for ankles! But now I would take…You were almost in the cankle range. And how pointy your nipples were. I’d never seen any so pointy, they were teats as teats were meant to be. Not silver dollar nipples like Sarah’s. How Sarah could strip with pancake nipples, I don’t know, but good dimples and a fine figure even those nice dimples on her back…and I remember I slept with mirrored panels above my bed, some fell off and fragments of you hovered above me and I desired you like a weaning babe wants back its breast milk and there were moments when I was an infant again asking, this sensation comes from here? All these smells—flowers and perfumes—come up these two small holes? And that pleasure like the sea, that comes from there?

And now the only one I see above me in the mirror is my forsaken self.