Friday, March 02, 2018

Wrestling Angels

I go for a walk today and do only half the required steps. Who requires it? I don't know. I listen to Bernard talk, then Neville, then Louis, then Rhoda, Susan and Jinny. I listen to each cadence and until my steps start to flag. And then I make for home because I am tired, because this walking in circles is pointless.

And whenever you interrupt their words, my thoughts, I walk faster, trying to work you out of my system. I try to walk through that slight ache that tugs at my chest. I know when I come home, having tired myself out, I will find no word from you, nothing.

This silence.

I think you will be here tomorrow, I am almost sure, but you were supposed to be there yesterday, and you weren't.

You called and cancelled. You said, no, next week instead.

Nothing compels you. You will not be compelled. You will come and go as you please. You find any sort of clinging distasteful.

And I have uninstalled Skype from my phone because I was tired of checking for a message that never came. I needed to stop.

And there is so much work now, so much. I have created it for myself because I need the distraction. I need to think of something else, someone else.

But there is no one.

I listen to Neville obsess about Percival and for the first time, I understand him. I understand how he loves Percival for leaving his letters scattered about unanswered, among his guns and dogs. I understand how he loves Percival for agreeing to meet him under a clock in London and then not showing up. For not understanding Catullus and yet understanding him, better than Louis who would understand the words perfectly.

You can love someone because they are perfect and remote and unattainable. Because they are ephemeral and disappear just as you are about to turn around. You can love them because you can only catch sight of them from the corner of your eye. You love them because they are fleeting and insubstantial, the substance of dreams and daydreams.

And even though love is too strong a word, too final, too finite, too all-encompassing, you attach that word to their face, their form, and it feels right.

Maybe tomorrow you will cease to remember, this obsession will pass.

But for today, you love them and you love them anyway.

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