by Alex M. Pruteanu

If you want to know who I am, read these Faerie cards upside down.
I put wax in my hair. Real wax. Melted. It never comes off. No matter how much you wash and rinse and repeat and rinse and repeat. And rinse. And repeat.
I am the punter who stalks the literature aisles, picks up “Buddhism, A Way of Life,” and puts it back after reading the inside jacket. The recommendation from the Dalai Lama. Good Housekeeping seal of approval. Association of Editors Something Something.
I am the boy with the olive skin who takes pictures of lewd sex acts performed by nobodies on stage at the Rock Creek Lodge Testicle Festival in Missoula, Montana.
I smoke menthols. Sometimes. Until I get caught.
I cut the tag off the mattress and piss into the toilet sitting down like a woman.
Because I'm lazy.
I write grace notes about Americana on lined paper and mail them to myself. I never stick on enough postage. They come back to me anyway.
I experiment with food dyes.
I grind down Valium and shoot them into my veins with a hypodermic needle.
I roll my eyes at impossible romances.
I lose faith and gain faith and lose desire for life.
Phone sex.
Alcohol on Easter Sundays.
Have you ever seen a fat Jesus?

She says: “You're UglyBeautiful.”
Roll eyes.
Turn red.
Empty the glass.
Open the veins in a hot bath. Like the Romans.
Like Frankie Pentangeles

This is at the end of sixteen years' work. I'm tired and so I open it up for her so she can see. Everything is there for her. “You're UglyBeautiful.” 
Nothing is. 
She says all I need is some convincing. 
And so I let her convince me.