A bulging envelope found its way to my mail box. Malformed manila bearing the shape of whatever sat inside. Though the scrawled name bore that of a stranger I still knew it — a man from a forum dedicated to dumb shit and dark jokes. I’d put out the call to trade handwritten shit. As the project’s progenitor I sent most of these pieces. Filled each with drawings and absurd stories. With shaggy dog tales about shooting cum across America.
I sent $20 to a suicidal man in Northern Ireland. The envelope arrived even though I’d stuffed a crust of bread along with the cash. I used old crayons and stickers to create comics of sex and cum. Of a depraved mingling of their many variants. Each letter was its own unique thing, never to be recreated. There’s a million silly, inventive things within those mailed pages.
These exchanges were fun. Swapping snail mail with people I’d only known in a digital space. Carving a new lane of creativity. The pages of the forum might disappear but this paper held permanence. Each piece a transmission from the handwritten heart. In return I received a small litany of words and items. Each arrival filled me with excitement, the not knowing what lived inside every envelope.
I recall nail clippings from a man and his girlfriend. Someone who trimmed his red pubes then stuck them to tape. A mother of one friend who sent me gift cards because I took a shit on a picture of her ex then posted it. I loved this dumb stuff.
Then the overfull envelope came. Manila bearing the shape of whatever. I tore its top and retrieved the contents. Inside lived both a letter and a string thin purple bandana. I tried to untangle the garment. Thought its fit to be off. Still, I strapped it to my head as best I could.
I read the attached letter which said the sender broke up with his girlfriend. That she couldn’t walk. That she cried the last time she blew him from her wheelchair. That this was her thong. I ripped it off my skull. Looked closer. Noticed dark stains. Shit. Piss. Cum. Blood. Sharp rust and reek.
Her lady goo had greased my brain. Graced my head with conflicting thoughts of disgust and amorous insight. Of how I could wrap it ’round my cock and stain it with another substance. I sniffed the cloth then stuffed it back in the envelope, this lace to never adorn my skin again.
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