“You’re not even hungry! she’d say. You can’t be. But I was hungry. For food, for approval, for secrets, for my legs’ push against the ground, for the ocean, for words. For none of these things at all., but for the brief satisfaction of filling myself with them.”
What do we all have in common when it comes to love, regardless of our sexual preferences? It devours us, picks it’s teeth clean with our bones! It makes fools of us as we wait for returns when abandoned, a god/goddess when adored, vengeful when burned but most of all we are hungry for it, our mouths forever open for more! It isn’t any easier if you’re gay, or young, or rich… what stupid things to say. Love is a wound sometimes too. Melissa Febos opens her soul to the reader, purging emotions and thoughts that we can all relate to. You should read it whether you are male, female, gay, straight, foreign, alien… you get it. Love, this greedy hungry creature, where does it rise from within us, how does our upbringing prepare or damage us for future partners.
This is how one woman makes sense of her upside down heart, her compulsion to both eat and spit out love, you know- that compulsion that drives us all into the arms of someone, hoping to fill, be filled and at the same time emptied out. Love is insane, our childhoods are insane… how the heck do we survive it all? As Melissa writes about her father (The Captain) and her mother’s seperation, his ‘stepping away from them’, it is poignant how it also her own love story in a sense. We take the beginings of our own story, which starts with our parents, and build a skeleton with it, on which we add our future and what a home it is! She rebels, she experiments, she stumbles and on and on she goes, as we all do.
Beautiful writing dripping with raw emotion, salt in wounds words. Yes, yes… me too! I have felt that, I have done that, it’s me, it’s you! From the quote I shared at the start of this review- “you’re not even hungry” we are always hungry! Our past is never completely behind us, every single person that we love or learn about love from we carry on our backs, we all need to be the adored and to adore. Love shifts, things end, and falling in love is both an ascension to heaven and a sacrifice to some terrifying demon. As Melisa Febos says “Though a clumsy child, I was a scrupulous keeper of secrets.” And lucky for us that is true, because what are memoirs really but a divulging of secrets, be they thoughts or stories that live inside our minds? Gorgeous.
Publication Date: February 28, 2017