And so, I am sitting on a thirteen hour flight and I am thinking about people, and sex, and the person I have sex with, but also people, and also sex. Junot Díaz is not helping me not think about sex. I think about sex, and I think about all the sex I will not be having in the next three months, and I am a little sad, and I think about HJ, and I am even more sad and while the whole thing is a bit sad I’m happy that I’m sad in the first place. Having people to feel sad about is kind of one of the reasons to live, I decide. Not that it’s completely necessary, but it does add a wonderful glow to living, if you’ve got food and water and shelter and all already.
And I’m still thinking about sex, and I really can’t stop, and I miss HJ so much that I take out my phone and try to look at photos of him. I have only four stored on my phone, because my phone broke. Not that I have that many photos of him or us anyway: we’re both not photo people. And because I have no internet, I can’t look at the fuzzy five-second video of him saying hi in a red shirt that I like, or the photo of us together with the good camera where my face looks a little bigger than I want it to and his eyes are in the middle of closing, like always. But I do have the four photos that I took of him two days ago in the morning on the bare bed in his boxers looking out the window at the blue, blue sky. Here they are:
In the first photo, the exposure is great for looking out the window and not so great for looking at HJ: he is nothing but a slight sheen of skin on bare back and a silhouette of a cowlick. Immediately before the first photo, you and him opened the window shade on the day and let the blue, blue sky filter into the empty room. You lay more or less side by side on your stomachs and looked at the view and the buildings outside but mostly the sky. You kissed his back and jumped up to take a photo because You Wanted To Get The Blue, Blue Sky And You All In One Photo, because Wouldn’t That Be Great? so you hopped off the bed and stood naked behind the bed and aimed the camera at the window and him before the open window and took the the first photo.
In the second photo, the exposure is not so great for looking out the window and somewhat better for looking at HJ: the blue, blue sky is blown out to white and the only vaguely accurate color of outside is are the trees, which are magnificently, stubbornly, lusciously green. HJ and the room are sort of colorless, but you notice that there’s a square fan in the window on the left. It looks like it’s almost the same moment, except you can kind of tell that it’s not because the shade in the window on the left, which is the only one that’s down, is a little concave because the wind is blowing lightly (not violently, which it often does: the window and the wind suck and blow those shades so much that it rattles and flies out with a ghoulish flapping, and suctions the door shut with a bam that is extra-loud because the door doesn’t quite fit the frame and is just big enough that it can only close with a yank, which the wind provides sufficiently). In the second photo, you can see his shoulder blades jutting from his back, and if you zoom in really close you can see one of his eyes, the other one hidden by the blanket, and it’s looking back at the camera with a smirk. You just know it’s a smirk, even though his mouth is hidden behind the blanket, too. You know that look.
Right before the third photo, you decided you Kinda Want A Photo Of Your Entire Face! so you hopped up on the bed and got back next to him and aimed the camera at his face, letting the outside exposure blow out to white because Oh Well That Probably Wasn’t Going To Work Anyway. You take this photo really fast. In the third photo, you can see most of his face. He’s smiling slightly in that perpetually good-natured way of his, but only half his mouth makes it to the picture so you can’t see the entirety of the lopsidedness of it, but still now that you look closer you’re thinking about how He Really Does Kind Of Glow Like Your Friend Said That One Time. His elbow is huge because it’s close to the camera. He’s kind of not looking at the camera and you think maybe he was looking at you with that soft look and it’s both good and bad because Well He’s Not Looking At The Camera Again So When Will I Get An Actual Good Photo Of Him but also He Was Looking At You With That Soft Look and that feels pretty nice, you guess, and Oh Fine It’s Really Nice That You Have This To Look At. His cowlick is sort of blurry. The hairs on his arms are in sharp focus, though.
In the fourth photo, you don’t exactly remember but it kind of looks like you took two photos really fast to get two copies to double the chance of success with the third photo and this was the photo that you would have deleted if you were into deleting imperfect photos, but since you both think things that are slightly awkwardly imperfect are hilarious, you smile a warm smile at this photo. In the fourth photo, his eyes are in the middle of closing. You think this photo is hilarious. You think how this photo is so quintessentially HJ. You feel an outpouring of affection for HJ in this photo. You miss HJ a little bit more. You kind of wish you were more used to outpourings of verbal affection with each other before the summer started.