2008 :: Issue 2/Spring :: Meditations on Love
I am having trouble handling all the love I have received in my life. It is like eating too much rich food; I am fat with love and growing inert from the overweight.
I found you, my darling, by touching objects along the way.
I used to pretend sometimes, as a child, what it was like to be blind. Especially after seeing Patty Duke in “The Miracle Worker.” I was easily captivated by anything I saw a child actor do in a movie and always compelled to feel like, to act for a while like the kid from the screen. It fed my soul. So this one time I was feeding my soul, my eyes wide open but as blank and useless as I could make them, groping my way in a tactile descent of the stairway when my grandfather happened to catch me at it. Startled, he asked me what I was doing. When I explained, Grandpa—his face warm brown and lightly studded with gray stubble and the cherry smell I loved of his cigar tobacco emanating from him—said I should never do something like that. He said I should never even think something like that. I was annoyed and thought he tried to stifle me because he didn’t understand me (which he didn’t). (He just loved me unbearably.) There at the foot of the stairs, face to face with him, I realized, and perhaps not for the first time, that I would have to take my pick: Be unstifled and understood or accept overwhelming love. I am still making up my mind.
There are innate affections—as effortless as a kiss that requires no pucker.
Love at first?: As I waited after the show in the white-painted cement lobby of an Off-Off-Broadway theatre, I overheard a man introducing some friends to the woman standing with him. Infused with cordiality he said, “We’re both bi-polar,” then added matter-of-factly, “I met her here tonight.”
I am alone again, strong and competent—fortified for having been with you.
The familial love in the room was so thick it hung like second-hand smoke.
One of the best things ever said to me: “I love being married to you. You make me unfold.”
Even as I was living it, even as I was the “she” and the “her” in it, I glimpsed it as an uncaptured snapshot of a moment in long-term love: She looking over her reading glasses at her simmering skillets, and he looking over his reading glasses at her.