a very alive dead feeling / fiction by chelsea taylor

It broke my heart when we came home from the trip and he didn’t call. Not only did he not call, but he pursued another girl right before my eyes. I opened up to him and he crushed me, and I let him back in for some reason.
I treat my heart like it’s unbreakable, and it’s not. Notes: 1

the wild hunt

I guess I’m using this to write again.  This time with no restrictions or rules.

I journal for myself but it’s not the same.  I like to write for readers, especially those that doesn’t necessarily know me.  People who know me don’t judge my writing properly because they don’t really listen.  When people are too close to me they stop listening.  I think the people who know me least are probably the ones who think they know the most about me.  They have their own perspective and what they’ve built me to be in their minds is all they know.  It crushes me because it’s never what I am at all.  I am what I write.  My writing is the real me.

So, the basics I will start with here, just so whoever reads this can know a little bit without ever meeting me, hearing my voice, or deciding that I remind them of some other dumb white girl they know.

I’m 25 years old.  Originally from Kennesaw, Georgia.  My dad is British and my mom is an army brat from Missouri.  I was practically legally blind almost my entire life (actually legally blind for only two months or so).  I had eye surgery at age 22 and my vision has been better than 20/20 ever since.  My best friend from childhood is a stripper at a well known strip club.  My younger sister has had aspirations to be a porn star since she knew what a porn star was.  I work at an international media company as a media manager.  I went to school for creative writing and film.  I perform improv comedy at a theatre. I have a boyfriend who is a dog trainer. I live with him. 

I’ve had so much stuff happen to me in my life that doesn’t make any sense whatsoever so I have to write about that right now.  I sure as hell can’t use it for fiction because no one would be able to suspend their disbelief.  I can’t help but write what I know for you with the hopes that maybe you’ll get a laugh or you’ll relate in some way.


We show up to the Roosevelt Hotel underdressed and intoxicated.  Right when we get there my best friend’s date Tim orders Diablos for everyone - a drink that looks like Kool-Aid and is infused with muddled jalepenos.  I chug mine immediately but my friend doesn’t drink hers.  She’s always had an aversion to spicy flavors.  He doesn’t ask her first because he doesn’t care.  


Collapsed on the granite tile floor of the hotel elevator - the young girl was pale and clammy.  The boy panicked as he struggled to pick up her body, still wet from the indoor pool.  Not knowing exactly what to do, he blew on her eyelids in hopes to startle her.  Stupid stupid! he said to himself.  Her eyes opened and she smiled calmly at him.


The nachos were getting cold.  They were no good unless you ate them right out of the oven.  The tomatoes and lettuce made the chips mushy.  The cheese hardened.  He couldn’t eat them though - not without her.  Once she got home from her exam he could make a fresh batch.  He turned and called out for his roommate Mark because he’d eat anything.

Faux Amis

The insect repellent stunk up the whole house.  Meg stared at her fingernails, the chipped polish bothered her but she had no will to get up, remove it, and repaint them.  The tea kettle whistled for 3 minutes before she got up to turn off the stove.  

All this stalling, this waiting.  For nothing.  Let the stove top burn, the water run, the polish chip.


She wrote, The hollow crux of your heart is sharp, and she could see it.  She stopped herself. She always found a way of saying something to herself that never made sense to anyone else because she wanted to make sure no one could have the dialogue that exists to her.  It was all she had.  Everything she ever exposed was taken from her in an instant.


Gina dropped the banana peel.  She watched from behind the screen door, the wheels of his truck rolled backwards onto the gravel country road.  He waved and turned and drove off.  She mushed the fruit with her tongue and let it slide over her teeth.  Gina was finished faking.  She was married once before, although he never knew that.  It was over.  

We Will See

He said to me “Of course you are an actress.  You have to be.  You have to study the art of being a human being because you are a fucking weirdo.”  He paused and looked right at me. “So you want to make films?  What kind of films are you trying to make?”

"I am still trying to find that out I guess."

"Sure.  We will see."


Nothing ever felt right with you.  Whenever I was at your place, you went on like I wasn’t.  You even said so yourself.  I should’ve just left and said nothing more, but a part of me wanted you to simply interact with me.  I know now you are incapable of being real unless you’re drunk out of mind and I’m too wasted to give a shit.


Click click.  Fade.  A shot of strange numbness.  The bones, muscles, organs, veins all blend together to the brain.  No sense made.  Limp.  Death without dying.  Present and aware in a fog, a delusion, a hamster wheel.  Caught in a loop.  It’s no existence at all.  They all stare in sadness at the pathetic being that is useless and incommunicable.


My hate for my father always grew in his absence.  While he was away, I hoped he would never return.  The less discreet he was about his reasons for always leaving, the more I wanted to disappoint him.  I spent my whole life trying to decide if he was ever really there to begin with.  He was just a mirage.  It’s easier to think that.