The Angel and the Dust

He uses his own body like an ATM

Julien Ceccaldi, Crawling Over A Guy. 2019, oil on canvas. 71 × 55 × 2". Courtesy of House of Gaga, Mexico City.

Oh how I miss him, how I miss him, how I miss him. He’s defenseless, if you only knew, an innocent creature left at the mercy of self-destructive impulses, and with a purity that . . . There’s no hope. Anyone, by paying a hundred and fifty euros, even you—pay and he’ll do to you exactly all the things that for me are paradise. Even more. Here, I’ll give you his number: 333-2363006; I’d prefer for it to be you, since you’re at least reading a book. What is for me the high point of my life, for him is “a way to make some dough”—to which he subjects himself willingly, cheerfully, a happy slave.

You can’t imagine, my unknown readers, how much I miss him—I’m sorry, but for now I’m unable to tell you anything other than that. You wouldn’t understand how beautiful he is even if I put a photograph here, because the camera always shoots duds with him. Let me cry for another minute, then I’ll try to explain. The only thing that consoles me is that if my deranged religion is true, AND IT IS TRUE, then from Thursday to Sunday I was actually with an angel. The dirt touches him but it does not sully him. Only a few manic and mystical sex addicts will have experienced what I’ve experienced—all the others were with an escort, they used him without suspecting a thing. I wish I were loaded so that every time he gets a call I could tell him, “I’ll give you double if you don’t go”; but even that wouldn’t be enough, because he enjoys going (“Hey, not like anyone knows ’em anyways”), he feels the need to be fucked by a crowd. Putting himself up for sale excites him, and flatters him: if people are willing to pay to make love to him, it means he’s worth something. He hasn’t been penetrated by this or that guy, but by life in general.

It’s not only his body, but how he talks: it’s enough for me to hear him say “fucksake” and already I want to cry. All my paternal instincts, my protective desires, my compulsion to make wagers on the beyond . . . I’m trying, through reason, to put a Band-Aid on the pain—give me another minute. My baby, how I miss him.

Until this vacation he hadn’t fully revealed himself. Pain is when the building is locked, at night, and you’re stuck inside. Pain is a hallway that started at a detour: if I could only manage to walk backwards and turn down the other hallway—I can just barely hear the sound of it, like water running behind a wall. The consolation of pain begins when you realize that it represents a finite quantity: a sack, once emptied, cannot help but show its own bottom. Pain is a part of knowledge, it fills the mind and the blood: seen from a slightly elevated perspective, it’s not all that different from enthusiasm.

To refer to his glutes, which he’s getting back in shape with the leg press, he says “my love buns.” It’s not bodybuilder vocabulary, it must be a loanword from some client (“Give me those love buns.” “Here they are!” with his eyes gleaming like a child’s). But the term is fitting, indicating what’s sweetly moist, what’s profoundly nuptial in his statuesque, flamelike beauty. Zibi has (had—in these last two months, I feel as though a century has passed) more sculpted muscles, but he’s like a piece of display furniture, or a feat of engineering, in comparison.

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