Author Archives: Tatiana Ryckman

An Excellent Job of Disappearing

7

I gave up drawing the bathrobe and I didn’t feel guilty.

Until I did.

.

7.3

I arranged pillows on the bed in your general size and shape and leaned into them through long, hot afternoons while scolding myself for not being more productive.

In a fit of ennui I made myself draw a bathrobe for you. I obscured the robe behind the ladder-back of a chair and suddenly understood my friend’s impulse to imagine something new behind her gate.

I had already been convinced that if I thought about you while I drew the robes I would do a better job.

Another way of saying this is that I believed that if I had sex with talented and interesting people, I would be more talented and interesting. There are formulas that corroborate this bad logic, which makes it no more accurate. Continue reading

Leave a Comment

Filed under Excerpts

“Coming of Age” and “Funeral Song” by Tatiana Ryckman

VHS and Why It's Hard to Live

The following stories are excerpted from VHS and Why It’s Hard to Live.

Coming of Age

Oma said, “Love and hate are not opposites. They are two sides of the same coin.” I didn’t truly understand this until much later, when an ex-boyfriend moved in with a woman he’d always complained about. I think this is also the explanation behind rape fantasies? Oma wasn’t brilliant she was just someone who got old and died. Even brilliant people will get old and die, though. At least, I’ve never heard of someone thinking herself out of death. Perhaps this is what monks meditate on. Though it seems more likely they are notthinking themselves into death. Into a state of acceptance of the death of every day. Like teenagers. In high school a boy who would sneak into my room at night but who would not date me said he envied the blissful fools around us. He said ignorance was the path to happiness, and that happiness was death to the self. It’s a little dramatic, but explains a lot about that time. That happiness is uninteresting has begun to depress me. But I enjoy sadness and wonder if that’s not just coming around the other side? And if maybe death is not the price of living but the prize at the bottom of a cereal box. Something cheap and plastic and infinitely alluring when viewed through the milky cellophane of our imaginations.

Funeral Song Continue reading

Leave a Comment

Filed under Fiction Advocate Original, Original, Original Fiction