Stars – Set Yourself on Fire

Stars – Set Yourself on Fire [Arts & Crafts] 2005
3 1/2 Stars

I was cleaning my room out, and I found a surprisingly crisp box in it.  I had drawn a hand and written /Set Yourself on Fire/ on the cover.  It was a box of love letters I’d written to my ex-girlfriend.  There were thirteen notes inside, each one creased and folded with militaristic precision.  These were not average grade love letters.  They were meticulously crafted by flashlight in the waning hours between three and six in the morning.  They were honest, beautiful, and gentille.  Each letter was sealed with a bit of candle dripping — a wax tear.
Every letter was a gorgeous composite of thought; ink pens mixed with ink jet; found poetry; stains from tears (or water?).  Reading them was like reading my personal dating history.  Sometimes we’d write to each other on the same page, a classroom chatroom.  These were the most compelling of all of the notes.  In almost too-direct language, we’d argue, break up, and make up.  Her rich, broken voice translated perfectly into her writing.  She sounded like Norah Jones after too many cigarette and martini evenings.  We hung out in piano bars.
Sure, not all of the letters were graceful in their beauty.  Maybe some of the memories were too fresh in my mind, but if my notes are to be trusted, I’ve led a fairly cliche romantic life.  Make ups, break ups, make ups.  But the box has a special place in my heart.  It feels comfortable and worn-in, a friend who is always welcome.  Even though I’ve felt this way before, the emotions feel fresh, and it all makes me so happy that the familiarity didn’t matter.  A personal history written in jelly pen.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: