Matchbox Maladies

Catastrophic uncertainty of the self.

Month: February, 2012

by Sine Qua Non

You’ve been waiting for me.

For the green light to appear beside my name. And then you had your excuse ready so you could message me. To keep the exchange going. Maintain the connection.

Barely even a minute here and you message me. And you even send a smile. Such calculated gestures. Tsk.

You’ve been waiting. These things are known to those who wait, too.


God, I miss you like hell. F*ck it dude, I do.


by Sine Qua Non

Good to know I can still make you laugh.

But I’m not sure if it’s a good thing that I feel good about being able to still make you laugh. Why should it matter? Exactly that, a mirage of questions addressed to the self — why should it matter? And why should it matter that it matters? What was I referring to again? Your laughter, I think. Or the good feeling. Or the fact that it’s not a good feeling after all. Who cares if it matters? What should I care if it shouldn’t? I toss and turn the thoughts in my head. I banter with myself. The heart and the mind, if I may dare. It never ends.

This supposed unassuming stance in our exchange is excruciating. Like what a very commonly used phrase in my native tongue would indicate, certainly, now, things seem to be out of place more than ever. And yet there is an undeniable sense of joy in the displacement. Now I am able to enjoy, fully, the lack of structure and the absence of rules. The fact that labels become unnecessary rids me of expectations. Saying that I can’t put a finger on it is blurted out  of sheer joy than of frustration. The part that makes it excruciating is not anymore about the anticipation for reciprocation or even just a reply. What kills me is that I still wonder about how to place myself in our exchange. What brings me joy is the fact that the gaiety brought about by things common to us persists. It makes me believe in something real.

I am also reminded of how things actually are: the distance, the barrier, the difference, the distraction, the could-have-beens, the never-weres, i-told-you-so, why-didn’t-you, you-shouldn’t-have, we-never-will, maybe-someday, maybe-tomorrow, surely, indefinitely. It’s become beautiful. I have finally come to terms with uncertainty. Hindi ko alam kung saan lulugar. Hindi ko kailangang malaman kung saan lulugar.

Even the fact that I am writing it now here with evident lack of literary-ness –  all just random rambling with no point but raw expression –  is out of place in itself.

Undeniably delightful, too.

by Sine Qua Non

is it my fault to have the urge to share with you music i know you will appreciate?

but the way you eased in and settled back into that corner of my heart (shoot me) was just so smooth i didn’t hear the rest of the world crash. it was so subtle the way you tugged at the string and unwrapped my recent history. now you know how i am, albeit not fully, and i want to know how you are. we mention familiar landmarks that i assumed was part of an era we lost. but here we are, could you tell me if the engine’s back on fire? cause the laughter echoes again. the characters re-appear, the wheels turn, our thoughts run on each other, and with each imminently interested remark you throw my way my cheeks are a-flush, i could feel my face burn.

too quick, i might say. like an earthquake ripping carefully constructed walls apart. oh no, it’s all crumbling down. dust to dust.

and please, please, please don’t quip at me like that. your virtual winks and smiles, they tear me down, brick by brick.

by Sine Qua Non

It’s called disgust.

The way you flaunt yourself as if you’re faultless of flirtation makes me want to puke.

But I guess I’m more bothered by how the rest if the world tolerates that.

The feeling grows.

by Sine Qua Non

I saw the green light beside your name. Then it quickly disappeared.

Don’t worry, I have no intentions of letting you know how much you are missed.

by Sine Qua Non

She does not expect to be saved.

Her fantasies are the same – telling stares, fingers that linger, a steady rising rhythm, tangled limbs, writhing, heat, sweat, steam. Inside her head, a scream is plucked from deep inside, it slithers into a moan, and purrs its way to a  nook of the nape. She imagines how she would lightly sink her teeth onto his shoulder while her claws mark her trespass. She flutters away from the scene in her head and bites her lower lip to the quiver between her legs.

But when he summons her, she couldn’t say yes. Neither could she say no. Resisting is too tempting to resist. The banter, after all, is part of the deed. But she has to be careful not too push too hard nor pull away too long. There is always the risk of being misunderstood.

It is not the promise of commitment nor loyalty that she needs. That would entail measuring  her self-worth based on what he would  be willing to offer. She is certain to avoid that risk. She will gamble only for, maybe, some interesting conversations, and then for everything else the body could bare. She’s ready for the sarcastic wooing, hopeful for painless separations. Encounters should stretch out for days, occur in intervals of months. It should be a surprise, unexpected but nothing too quick to merely attend to the base needs of the flesh. The rendezvous is already sinful, secret, therefore it must no longer be borne out of juvenile compulsions. It should be intended, savored, endured. She refuses to sneak into a room of pale light, hard bed, stiff sheets. She doesn’t need amour, but she needs to some pleasure in meaning. The elusive nature of their exchange should leave subtle impacts. Like a sequence from a French film. Or a tiny bruise that found its way from the corner of the table to the right hip. Anticipated, quick, unforgettable. She needs reason to continue. She needs it to excite her.

The truth of the matter is that she intends to prolong the fantasy in her head.  It should not be that easy for either of them. She needs to feed on the agony of want but without turning it into pain. The body could endure only so much. Or, rather, so little.

She doesn’t need him to fall in love with her. She only needs him to keep her fantasy alive. The memory of his body on her will weigh her down, will push down on her unwilling thoughts until these have been weighed down so low it could only serve to wound the feet. And then, maybe, she will no longer wake up to the same nightmare of a battle lost.  At least in this game, the certainty of loss is brought about by her own rules. This time she could throw in the towel and not regret what she could possibly lose.

by Sine Qua Non

All I want is to be wanted, desired uniquely for who I am not because I can merely fulfill carnal needs or serve as the filler, the rebound, the in-between.
How brazen of you to ask such things of me. How sad it is for us to have come to this.

Sadder, still, that I discover these truths everyday without ample pause for rest nor recovery. I am hurled into the mess of the dysfunction of desire. I tumble on painfully, trying hard to keep what’s left of me intact.

Where do this all lead to?


by Sine Qua Non

i think about how you knocked on the door and expect to be led to the bed. the outright frankness. the bold gesture. the appeal. the arrogance.

yet i received you. or hesitated to. our exchange was vague. the wordplay dripped with subtext. we lost the meaning to the metaphor.

we opened the doors then closed them. broke through the windows and drew the curtains. shut the world out. locked ourselves in.

we try to act like adults. but we leave our bikes outside the gates we break into. the wheels, searching for Somewhere Else, are still spinning.

whose house is this anyway? which door? what room?

by Sine Qua Non

Inside the bathroom, my head was filled with all sorts of lines and metaphors that would be part of poems I would dedicate to you which you will maybe never read.  But now I sip my milk, battle with sleep and forget.  Maybe the lines weren’t pretty enough to be remembered. Or maybe I need to sleep more than to write you a poem which, again, you probably will never read.


I fail you well. Good thing you’ll never find out.

by Sine Qua Non

This is our unholy hour.

Our propositions entail risks we’re not sure we’re willing to take and sacrifices we’d rather not make. We evade the yes and avoid the no. We piece together clues based on implicit assumption, and when we are confronted with the truth we say it isn’t so.

How can we possibly confuse self-preservation with no nonsense conceit?

We’ve expected too much, failed too well.

The hole is dug deep. You push me in, I hold on to your hand. We wait for something to break our fall.

The rain fell hard, it came too soon.