I want to be Johnny Depp. Period. No qualifiers, no “on the days I’m feeling wild.” No, I want to be Johnny Depp every moment. I want to walk as Johnny Depp, I want to scare people as Johnny Depp, I want to sleep as Johnny Depp. Not with, but as. I want to wear a dead crow on my head and beads to my naval over my bare chest.
I don’t want to be a man, that’s not at all the point. I want to be me, female, but as Johnny Depp, not Juanita Depp, or Janice Depp. Johnny Depp. Totally.
I want talent that makes my teeth sharp and other people quail. I am the bow and arrow, they are the quiver. I want to step out of the ordinary and walk down city blocks in leather pants with ferret fur wrapped around my arms. I want to look out at the world through a mask of colors, eyes of a hawk, mouth as a line. Missing nothing.
I may not want to live off cactus juice but I would know that I have and that I could again if needed. I would have the paw or claw of my vision quest animal in a purple velvet bag held closed by a porcupine quill.
I want biceps that don’t show that I’ve ever been held by a man, I want freedom from having to please, needing to be pretty. Johnny Depp is all the pretty I need. I want to eat cuteness for lunch.
I want politeness to fall off behind me like old tin cans tied to a Model T. One clang per tin, and each gone forever. I want the Model T to fall off behind me, too. The wedding of niceness is over, my divorce from propriety finished. I won’t look back.
Not that I’ll ravish others, not that I’ll not abide by my code of what’s proper and just, a frontier justice nuanced by years of observation of the animal life of humans compared with wild gardens, sweet with compassion that is held in check by fatalism. But only I would know I had compassion, and I would do secret things to up the quotient of good in the world. And then walk silently on in my moccasins. I won’t look back.
Or maybe I’d just be the Mad Hatter, looney as a rainbow captured in a bell jar.
I want to be the Mad Hatter going into restaurants, a pirate going into business meetings, a maniac with scissors as hands going into the wilderness, and Tonto going into love affairs. Love me, love my dead crow. Humans fake a lot. My crow knows.
But I wouldn’t freak out at being larger than a house or smaller than a dope-smoking caterpillar. It would just be another day.
Yes, I want to be Johnny, crazy, but I’d have damn good beads, and my make-up would be stunning.