Back to Fiction - Jennifer Greidus

 

Amorim by Jennifer Greidus

 

Dry, dark sand. It’s the setting, as if anyone would want to fuck in sand. We’ve thrown down three beach towels on top of the dyed sand. I watch Davi as he oils up. He slides a greasy finger along the left side of his balls, slides it behind them, and then points that same finger at me.

           

“Don’t think I don’t love you,” he says.

           

I nod.

           

This is our golden moment. I call in the man for lighting, some women for the film and sound. Davi and I are no longer alone. His slicked-up, bronzed skin is in the spotlight, and I am sidelined. I smoke a brown cigarette, eat powdered donuts, and “journal” about my self-delusion. I wipe white powder on my black tank top and mumble, “Shit.”

           

They test the lighting against Davi’s Brazilian flesh. Some sound and technical nonsense goes on. Grumbling. Smutty laughter. I am bored.

           

Enter Margaret “Peg” Finnegan. Naked, as well. Pale, petite, stemming from Georgian royalty. She is the co-star, and she clasps a well-worn copy of Lysistrata. I found her in Vadim’s on the Bowery, contemplating a strip of napkin that someone told her was a superdrug. Now, she moves into Davi’s spotlight, and she is made famous by the spotlight, too. He and she small talk.

           

I swallow envy. Her lithe body. Fucking Lysistrata. I told her to bring something classical, but who meant that classical? This is my spotlight, brainchild, move the fuck over.

           

Davi, slick and smelling as if he came from a rugby scrum at Guarujá, does crunches in the nude. He stands at attention, though, when I slide off my stool and toss my ragged, red journal at Jaxx, the lighting guy. Jaxx drops my journal to the cement flooring. Had he looked, he would have seen these words: This exercise will not work. This exercise only reaffirms my negative thoughts. I want to solve my thoughts. I pretend to be other people, and that’s fucked up.

           

To the small, antsy gathering – two of whom have exposed, shaved, and shiny genitals – I announce, “Today, two worlds collide, and necessarily so! We bring these worlds together, not for the pornography connoisseurs–”

           

Peg timidly gestures to my lips, where I assume there is powdered sugar. I shrug and pace the room, flicking my cigarette obsessively. I decide to continue (disregard Peg, re: powdered sugar). “This is for the haters!” I yell. “This is for the wasters! So, they said they wanted smarter porn? Some crackpots go on and on about how there should be a plot?” I kick up my heels, Schutzstaffel-style. “We don’t want any fucking plots!”

           

A hurrah rumbles through the small, cool room (nipples).

           

“We’ll give them smart porn. We’ll Mann Magic Mount Him! We’ll give them titillating Double Dickens!”

           

“And Hemingway?!” Davi implores, pressing his voice above the cheers.

           

I say, “We fucking rip up and rip out the slumbering crap-wagon that is Hemingway. We will forge on, until panties need changing!”

           

A louder hurrah. Davi growls and throws his right arm in the air, clawing, as if he’s a jungle cat.

           

I order, “You read. You spit. You undulate. You watch your blocking. If I wanted to look at your forearms, we’d be playing fucking squash. Peg, two words. No. Farting.” My head falls forward. The sermon has drained me. I chain light another brown cigarette, and extinguish the short one in a can of Sprite.   

           

“Now,” I whisper, “you naked, dissipated, MFA motherfuckers. Get to work.”