This is Not David Markson



David Markson was not born in Quincy, MA 1974.

He did not weigh 8lbs 12ounces upon delivery.

He wasn’t not circumcised.

David Markson did not start walking at eight months.

His first moment of self-consciousness did not come while sitting in the cool stairwell of a brick two-family on West Street after a hot summer day of jumping through the sprinkler, his skin goose-bumped, nipples erect.

David Markson did not experience his first fully conscious boner while watching an episode of I Love Lucy on a black and white TV set, sitting on a forest green shag rug, Lucy and Viv showering in a glass stall with their clothes on, the water level inside rapidly rising above their heads, the live studio audience laughing all-the-while.

At five, David Markson did not share his first kiss with the upstairs landlord’s daughter, sitting on his father’s weight bench in the musky basement, surrounded by assorted dumbbells, not to mention glossy photos of a rock-hard Arnold Schwarzenegger and Frank Zane.

He did not feel his first breast at one o’clock in the morning, on a pull-out sofa at the age of twelve while watching Friday Night Videos, David Lee Roth hosting, and as he introduced Madonna’s newest song “Papa Don’t Preach,” this girl, this daughter of a jailed Irish gangster did not lustfully push David Markson’s hand against her barely formed womanhood, whispering into his ear, “I love this song a wicked lot.”

David Markson did not reach third base for the first time on the carpeted floor of a police detective’s den, a dying grandmother behind the closed door of an adjoining bedroom, and a best friend spying through the window who would later ask, “Can I take a whiff of your finger?”

David Markson would not prematurely ejaculate into his pants while the police detective’s daughter dry-humped his leg on the bed of her recently deceased grandmother.

His first sexual encounter did not occur at fifteen with the daughter of his father’s former weight-lifting buddy, a man who killed himself ten years prior after finishing second to David Markson’s father in that year’s Mr. Bay State bodybuilding contest.

At eighteen, David Markson’s first real sexual encounter as an adult did not occur with the woman he would eventually marry, she becoming the only woman he would fuck for the next eighteen years, a fact that wouldn’t necessarily bother him until the seventeenth year, when his best friend would die in a car crash, leaving behind three kids and a wife whose womanhood he’d once sniffed when said dead best friend pushed a finger under David Markson’s nose as payback for the police detective’s daughter.

David Markson would not have sex for the first time since divorcing his wife with dead best friend’s younger sister, in early winter, against a stacked cord of firewood, outside the living room window in the cold and rural dark, listening to dinner guests toast best friend’s short, but well-lived existence, their words inspiring him to remain inside of her during climax, a literary device that the actual David Markson never injected because he wisely understood that plots and procreation do not go hand in hand, nor dick in cunt.

At 39, David Markson would have driven his dead best friend’s sister to Planned Parenthood because he would have understood that all plots lead to death and therefore loss, and in that way you can never make a real or fictitious someone anew, not in body, not in tale.

It did not take him forty-seven years to cheat on a wife for the first time, having twice resurrected his dead best friend’s genes via his younger sister’s uterus, resulting in two daughters who looked nothing like their late uncle nor David Markson, not to mention his loosely autobiographical novel being countlessly rejected by publishers, causing him to seek existential accreditation in a top student, a buxom, redheaded sophomore in his Narrative Design course.

David Markson did not have farewell sex with his dead best friend’s sister on the day he moved out of the house, in the garage, from behind, against the driver-side fender of her Honda Pilot, reaching around her waist and stroking her down there so that minutes later, on his way to newly rented hole-in-the-wall, he could caress his own cheek with the cheap and easy scent of dénouement.

It would not take him forty-nine years to deflower his first virgin, another student (bony blonde), another Narrative Design course, but this time around David Markson gets through it without tearing up, without going the least bit soft.

David Markson did not tell a gorgeous brunette in his Writers Reading Fiction course that having sex with her was better than having a short story published in Agni (not that he’d know), but surely not as good as having one published in The New Yorker (not that he’d ever know).

At the mid-century mark, David Markson had published a hell of a lot more than fifteen stories in second-tier literary magazines.

In the year 2025, David Markson did not have sex with eight of the creative writing department’s seventeen graduating females.

Still universally handsome at fifty-three, David Markson did not have sex with the portly, sixty-eight year old chancellor as a means of covering his ass.

David Markson did not die of a heart attack at sixty-four, jacked on Johnny Walker Red and a little blue pill, a forty-two year old adjunct poet riding him, riding that dick which had always been way too big for his heart, which in the grand scheme of this story, isn’t saying much.








Eugenio Volpe has published stories with New York Tyrant, Post Road, Superstition Review, Exquisite Corpse, Thought Catalog, Twelve Stories, Waccamaw, the delinquent, matchbook, decomP, and more. He has won the PEN Discovery Award for his novel-in-progress and been nominated for Pushcart and Best of the Web prizes. He blogs about surfing and Don DeLillo at mebeingbrand.blogspot.com.