You’re a Wonder–William Bradley

Hippolyta created Wonder Woman out of clay, though I’m not sure why.  Artistic expression?  Boredom?  Did she often sculpt babies?  Were there earlier, imperfect sculptures, made as Hippolyta learned her craft, not granted life by the goddess Aphrodite?  I imagine there were.  This woman, this queen, beloved by her sister-subjects on Paradise Island, but so painfully alone.  So she sculpted a little clay brood to delight her in a utopia where life could be enjoyed but never created.

I’m lonely myself.  If we can’t live in the same place, my dear—and at the moment, we can’t full-time—I think I’d like to sculpt you, then ask Aphrodite to do me a solid, allow me to create you and breathe life into you, perhaps with a kiss.  Although that sounds more fairy tale than comic book.  But she’s the goddess of love—maybe she’d go for that.

I’d bring you to life, then regard you with a smile and a, “Hey.”  And you’d reply, “I’ve missed you,” and you’d put your arms around me.

But what would you say next?  You have the wisdom of Athena, so I imagine it might be something like, “Shakespearean scholars think about Shakespeare as but one of a cluster of playwrights in the period. Knowing this — and thinking about the broader question of ‘Who were all of these men who wrote the plays?’ — means that Shakespearean scholars are looking for a different set of information and operating with different assumptions about the fundamental concepts in the issue.”

But then again, maybe not.  You’re an intellectual, true, but you’re also a woman of passion.  It’s unlikely that you’d mark our reunion with scholarly discourse.  You’d be more excited to see me, I think.

“Fuck me with your huge cock.”

Tempting, but no.  In the 11 years we’ve been together, you’ve never issued such a greeting.  I’m confusing you with pornography.

“Shall we open a bottle of wine?”

That suggestion raises some problems too.  You are, after all, made of clay, and clay dries out quickly even without the dehydrating effect of alcohol.  Hippolyta and her daughter never had this problem, but as we drink I notice you begin to look a bit ashen.  I spray you with one of the water bottles we use on the cats when they fight; this helps for a little while, but the reality that we do not have much time begins to sink in.  You are turning white and beginning to crumble; so, for that matter, am I.  It’s unavoidable—the reality that underlies this ridiculous fantasy. We’re human, and crusty, dry decay is what awaits us.  You are not the only one here who came from—and will return to– dust.

In reality, neither of us can sculpt, let alone create life from clay.  All we can do, I guess, is write.  We can at least hope that my essays and your scholarship will give us some form of immortality.  But on days when we’re too hungover or uninspired to get any writing done, let’s resist the temptation to sit in front of the TV or spend the day focused on chores or stressing about all the money we don’t have.  Let’s enjoy this time we have together.  Let’s get out of here, away from wasteful, banal distractions, and have some adventures together.  If we can’t procure an invisible jet, we can take the Corolla, which just got an oil change and has new windshield wiper blades.

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