Tag Archives: us

112. if i would be this happy

so your brother is going to cambridge. we went over there with congratulations: chocolates and a card, as you do, because i’m proud of him. though not as proud as i am of you. you deserve something like that so much more and i think we both know that.

looking back now, do you remember the day we were waiting for our results to appear on the screen of the computer? the tears and awfulness of that day? the sitting on the grass in the field near your house, later, the weather lukewarm, sun popping in and out of the clouds? because i remember. you got your grades but i didn’t. one mark away from getting into the right university, one mark away from solidifying myself away from you.
i knew then that something wanted us to be together – who knows what would have happened if i went somewhere else? knowing me, you would be a memory. knowing you, you’d hate me for that.

how poignant it all is, looking back. but i don’t regret a thing. whatever will be will be and all that was makes us who we are now. i sit here now, wrapped in a towel, readying myself for an evening out with you (tenessee williams’ “sweet bird of youth” at the old vic), and wonder if i would be this happy had something else occurred?
what if i’d got the grades, what if you didn’t, what if some force of nature ripped the fabric of us?

and i wonder, if we knew the future if we’d have done it all again.

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85. cherry soda loves

there was a line in streetcar named desire that i remember. it said it’s touching to notice them making their first discovery of love! As if nobody had ever known it before.  it resonates, for now the time has come for the bud to be broken and flowers to bloom in the late-spring night air.

the risk is nothing. nothing, really. there are only the long sprawling afternoons this side of summer, when paper is scrunched up into tiny little balls and burnt with a magnifying glass or matches. whichever, the result is all that matters. words are nothing: this air requires action! 
and there are trees, so beautiful this time of year. they remind me of walking to school in the summer and inhaling the scent of apple tree blossom with T. those were the days, eh?

but now, no now, those buds will open and blossom will scatter into the hands of a handsome young man that we choose. for me, this sweltering summer, it’ll be you. and, god willing (an expression i borrowed from an altogether more believing friend of mine), next summer also. for T (if we were boys, she’d be a brother from another mother) it will be someone else. Her new beau (a rather lovely Tenessee expression!). her very first. amazing stength and will and beauty.

so here we are, and isn’t it queer to think we shall be here always? in the arms of another, in the throes of spring, the coming summer alighting hopes in every single one of us, as if petards were thrown at the pavement before us, at our feet, at our willing young hearts?

and we can’t help this feeling hopeful. and we can’t pretend we didn’t want this life.
so every year, like clockwork, we will be discoving those cherry soda loves and shedding blossom in each other’s arms.

yes, i remember

yes, i remember
the blue sky with no horizon,
the trampled road we trod though
one april morning following another.
and the time was not stopping
but starting anew:
in me and in you,
even in those black eyes and hands
which longed for the other on these marshes.
we feared no ending: it would not come; not to us
who knew of life lived simply,
of lukewarm soup and truth before bedtime.
yes, i remember
and it will be alright.

82. once in a million words

to know fear is to have never tasted it, that bitter acrid taste of rotting apples mixed with strong perfume. there is no knowing, only inhalation and dizziness before the lights go on. then, fear subsides.
the aftertaste remains. cologne is rotting. rotting all the same.

and swallowing the cider bile i stop. and start. i stop and start. and i remember that this was rhythm beaten out for me and Y. aeons ago, i would have told him this was our rhythm, that it was made for us. really, the rhythm is mine alone.
it is the heartbeat of a rabbit caught running in circles, breaking out of a different hole every time. only i have no space of time and who knows if i’m late?
there is no knowing here, only white roses being painted red. but i need no paint, truth always comes out in the end.

and this fear reigns over love. it transcends the borders of us and reproduces in our creations. why is that, will you tell me?
it must be us, the charcoal darkening the paper.
it must be orange juice spilt on a linen cloth. or coffee. coffee on those tiles.

still, it’s so nice to be able taste fear once in a million words, wouldn’t you say?

80. this once, its more than enough

bonne anniversaire!

i like the way it rings, reverbrating from the eardrums straight into the heart. it’s been a year.
only.
already.
and i don’t know how to feel, i just feel the need to thank you for the knowledge that someone in the world matters more than the world itself. je t’adore. and i’m not joking. sometimes, not too often, i catch myself pause in the middle of the sentence when i look at you because thoughts that flush into my head like tapwater into a blocked sink.

i’d say remember, but you do. every word i say. you’re magic, you hear me? maybe. telekenisis? unlikely. but know, if you do, that though you’re not here but somewhere else, my feeling never wanes. artificial flowers never wilt; real emotion never dies. sometimes it just recedes to the back of the mind. like magic.

you gave me the rosary beads from your first communion as a gift this morning. placed it along with your card on my porch. and i swear, i didn’t know what to do. it seemed like so much. a universe of you in my palm. 
and i couldn’t wait to ask you about the meaning, though i knew. and you knew that i do. it’s a game we play because neither of us likes losing.

it’s a symbol that i’m ready to learn about it with you. and i can’t be sure that’s exactly what you said, but that’s what i heard.

and i’m stuck for words, but i sit here clutching at metal and plastic made to look like glass in silence and i know wherever i go, you’ll follow.
sometimes emotion is enough to fill the silence. this once, its more than enough.

78. i have decided that i will be cold tonight

do you reckon we could make snow angels without snow? we could scrape ourselves against the ground, delirium of cold seeping through our pores. then, maybe then, our bodies would scrape away the frost from the pavement without drawing blood. maybe the ice will shatter somewhere inside of us. i’m cold tonight and nothing will warm me.

more than anything, i’d like for the sunset to come around again.
more violent this time, more primitive, innate; heat firing my synapses all at once with broken impulses. and i want it to smell of freshly brewed coffee in a little cafe on a little hidden street nobody knows but stumbles onto by chance. we must always roll the die of life. it’s in the eyes. always in the eyes.

like silence.
yesterday i would have told you it never comes around, but silence came. and now i know true silence is that which lies in the inevitability of it being broken any moment now. suppose it’s like cutting a cake. don’t ask me why.
and when it comes around you can see it lurking like a shadow in the eyes. a vapid corner of pitch black dark. but we are burning embers in the shadows of the light.
come with me: it will be alright.
i have decided that i will be cold tonight.

but i will try to warm you up.

76. i liked yellow as a child

what we are in the womb is everything we’ll ever be.
take you, take me, take S or X or Y, letters galore. take them all, take some more.
we can never change so long the warmth and darkness implores us. and if we can remember the dreams we had, they’ll be all we ever know.
i’m a girl tying pieces of the puzzles together. they still fit and i still am an involuntary virus to a willing host.

i liked yellow as a child.

and i told you, if you ever lied, i’d cheat on you.
well, that’s not true.
i wish i were that simple. i wish you knew that the river of you runs through my veins, pushed up against all gravity.

and that’s all the physics i know.