Handle with care

…That night we barely closed our eyes. We kissed through the night, and the bitterness of our saliva filled the room. Our bed drifted in the boundless sea like a lonely island in imminent danger. We took refuge in each other’s love. When the heart breaks there’s a crackling sound, very light and very fine, like the splintering of wood fibers… (Wei Hui – Shanghai Baby)

Probably what she appreciates most when they are together is the uncertainty of their physical relationship. Each time they meet each other, it seems as if there was a wall between them. Not that they consciously want this barrier to be there, it is just natural. They keep a certain distance between them. A kind of decency, timidity. Not fake, not invented. It is not because they are beyond desires or mutual attraction, they always start the evening with conversations about new books, new movies. Not small talks either. They don’t want to rush each other into some kind of awkward behaviors. Yet they are not prude or shy. They are just calm and serene. They seem to enjoy these moments and to catch up with the time which has kept them apart. Real time however is suspended. The air is peaceful and benign, yet something enigmatic and beyond comprehension is there. If one looks at the scene from the outside, like a movie, one probably would think that the physical part could never happen. The probability that they would kiss or even hold hands is almost none. Their instincts might be animal, they could hardly guess their own feelings and desires in front of each other acting the way they act. The woman seems to be intrigued by it. She never knows what is going on in his head. He never says something sexually provocative or ambiguous, they don’t seek to seduce each other. He smiles from time to time and speaks to her in a slow rhythm, with a gentle voice. Calm he is, as usual. When is this icy wall between them going to break? Nobody knows. Only they have the key to the enigma.

Sometimes when she stands up, grabs a book at the bookshelves, shows it to him, then he kisses her hand, the one holding the book.

Sometimes when she goes to the kitchen, boiling water for a pot of tea, then he kisses her, from behind, in her neck.

Sometimes they kiss each other goodbye, late at night, then they decide to spend the night together.

They seem to manage their ardor differently. That’s all. And they never know why.

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I have changed too

I do not love you as if you were salt-rose, or topaz,
or the arrow of carnations the fire shoots off.
I love you as certain dark things are to be loved,
in secret, between the shadow and the soul.

I love you as the plant that never blooms
but carries in itself the light of hidden flowers;
thanks to your love a certain solid fragrance,
risen from the earth, lives darkly in my body.

I love you without knowing how, or when, or from where.
I love you straightforwardly, without complexities or pride;
so I love you because I know no other way than this:

where I does not exist, nor you,
so close that your hand on my chest is my hand,
so close that your eyes close as I fall asleep. ”

Pablo Neruda

I have been longing, waiting for you.

I have let you live, be free, be YOU.

I have never asked for anything.

For the first time I have loved someone for who he is and not for what he gives.

I have loved our story from the beginning because you have embodied fineness.

Your thoughts were delicate.

Your words were dainty.

You have had a touch of a lost samourai in everything you did and said.

But lately you lost it. And I don’t know why. And I did not see it coming.

Suddenly you have become trivial.

You love vulgar things and creatures.

Your ideas primitive.

Your words hurt my ears.

I could not find ourselves in what we have exchanged lately.

On my screen: the website of the local airport.

Your flight AF 191 – Status: landed.

I will not be there.

I have changed too my love.

Measuring the distance

The most difficult thing to live with when you are apart is silence in between communications.

We don’t write to each other every day. We don’t skype either. I never like Skype, I think our faces are deformed by this laptop- incorporated camera and I don’t want to look unattractive to him when I am far away. Also if we fix a time for Skype, usually it is during night time when I am already in pajamas and I am not excited about putting on something decent for the camera.  It’s not comfortable either to sit at my desk and talk. Ok, you can lie on your bed and be comfortable, but then THIS position in bed, depending on how you place your laptop, would definitely distort your face. But this is me being a bit girly and full of principles. So, no, I don’t like Skype. Not to mention the long recovery from daydreaming and missing him with every part of my body after a few hours of virtual “skypy” happiness. No thanks.

I usually go through some disorderly states of mind with the distance/communication thing. How we proceed: I write, he answers. Or he writes, I answer.

Day 1: the day I receive his mail. I am great. I am euphoric. I sing in the shower in the morning. I feel powerful. I am productive. I walk in the streets with a smiling stupid face. I am nice to my colleagues.

Day 2: I am great. Still sing in the shower. Still smile a lot. I am still a nice person to my environment.

Day 3: In the shower I said to myself: “Two days ago, he said he were…”. I know his mail by heart. Details in the mail are all swallowed and digested. I feel ok.

Day 4: First thing in the morning is not singing in the shower but staying a bit longer in bed and wondering: “Where were you the last three days?”. I am a bit slower in any activity.

Day 5: I still know his last mail by heart but I don’t try to recite it to myself anymore. I never go back to my mailbox and read the mail again. Things become  impalpable. I try to relativize the notion of time. Five days are nothing. I am grumpy at work.

Day 6: I don’t show up at work. I kill myself. No, I am just kidding. Yes, I become very silent. I have a “leave me alone” face. I act like a robot. But usually that is when he writes again. And then the “Day 1- feeling/state of mind” starts all over again. My mood switches in a snap.

I simply wish that the effect of his mails could last longer than the distance between us – 4537 miles – 7301 km.

Reality is not in my vocabulary

I am sure you are at least once, if not many times in your lives, touched or affected by some catchphrases, dialogs or movie scenes. I am not any different, if not worse. Some love scenes or dialogs (or silence) could kill me. Out of their beauties and power.

I could never forget:

1. The way we were (with Barbara Streisand and Robert Redford):

Evening – somewhere outside. She sees him on the other side of the street. She crosses the street to talk to him. He looks at her, says nothing, bends slightly, takes her leg and ties her laces.

2. Out of Africa (again with Redford and Meryl Streep):

Afternoon – He washes her hair.

3. Once upon a time in America (with Robert de Niro – after this movie, I have always thought he could stop acting for good, he could never play in another movie that could live up to that one, he had reached in “Once upon a time in America” the apotheosis of  the art of acting. Anyway it is just my humble opinion):

Evening – He invites Deborah for dinner.

“You want a place by the ocean. I had it opened. It was closed for the season. All these tables are for two people. Pick whatever one you want”.

They dance in the empty restaurant.

He repeats a poem she used to read to him : “How beautiful are your feet / In sandals, O prince’s daughter/ Your navel is a bowl / Well-rounded with no lack of wine / Your belly, a heap of wheat / Surrounded with lilies / Your breasts / Clusters of grapes / Your breath, sweet-scented as apples.”

4. Love story (with Ali Mc Graw and Ryan O’Neal):

Afternoon – Outside – they play with the snow, in a park. Music and unforgettable soundtrack.

Evening – In front of the porch – After a fight, Jenny, in her tears: “Love means never having to say you’re sorry”.

5. And recently “Drive” (with Ryan Gosling)

In the elevator – he looks at the killer, turns to her – Not a word, silence, and kisses her. The kiss lasts for at least three minutes.

6. My movie

Before he left, we did not discuss the ending or how we were supposed to live our time apart. For me, it was more “The end” than “To be continued”. I did not know if I could see him, ever again. I have decided to not expect anything else from that moment.

The day he left, he called me from the gate, a few minutes before boarding. I had bought a new laptop a week earlier. I told him on the phone.

“Don’t throw away your old laptop. When I am back, I will have a look at it, see why it’s so slow, I will clean it for you” – he said to me.

I died after this answer.

Optimism

“Pure love for another person, and what people call romantic love, are two different things. Pure love doesn’t manipulate the relationship to one’s advantage, but romantic love is different. Romantic love contains other elements—the desire to be loved by the other person, for instance. If purely loving another was enough, you wouldn’t suffer because of unrequited love. As long as the other person was happy, there wouldn’t be any need to suffer because you weren’t being loved in return. What makes people suffer is the desire to be loved by another person. So I decided that romantic love and pure love for a person are not the same. And that by following this you could lessen the pain of unrequited love.”

Haruki Murakami

I started to isolate myself when my closest friend started to comment: “This is going nowhere, he is too far away.” I have never answered back.

Do I miss him ? Yes.

Do I need him ? Don’t know yet.

Am I suffering? No, not yet.

I let it be. I will be fine. I think so.

It happens…

Sometimes I hate you.

You ask me why ? For example, last weekend, a beautiful and very warm one, I went out for a drink. Nice evening, nice terrace, nice crowd. Friends of friends came around. Among them, a Jude Law-alike dentist. We talked. A lot. Maybe too much. The usual seduction stuff. The moment arrived, he asked for my number. My answer was NO. A huge NO, a gigantesque NO. The one that makes the guy stop smiling at me in less than one second. A “NO” followed by no doubts and no regrets. You were on my mind the whole time. I haven’t seen you for 11 weeks now, 11 weeks and 2 days. That evening, I hated you a bit.

Sometimes I don’t like you a lot.

When you tell me you get hurt during your training, your combats, or whatever, no matter how cool you pretend to be, I can feel your pain. Even a tiny tiny injure. The moment you told me, I stopped functioning. If I was eating, I stopped eating, my appetite gone. If I was working, I stopped working, my concentration gone. If I was out with friends, laughing, enjoying and all, my body ached exactly where you were hurt. Then I stopped laughing and enjoying. That was the only times I did not fancy the “information sharing” between us.

I am not sure I like me thinking of you that constantly.

And definitely I don’t like myself feeling your pain. It’s just too weird.

But otherwise, most of the times, I think I love you, quite unconditionally.

The way I deal with love

This is for you and I can write whatever I want to tell you, because I haven’t given you  the link to my blog yet. And you might never get to read these lines.

And if you had a chance to read this, I know what you would think. “Hey, my dear, you do it again”. I remember the second time I told you I love you (the first time – can I say it ? I said it through a text message – OUCH ! – ok, ok, I could not do it in front of you), you looked at me and said: ” I know why you have this little smile when you said that…, it amused you to just say it to me and see how I will react, because now it’s my problem”. “Yes, of course, now it’s on your shoulders, once I said it, it’s not my problem anymore” – I laughed.

So this is for you, all of this…each of these words.

But I know you well, you will never say something which could make me sad. You will always be cool and accept whatever love declaration I need to burst out, whenever it suits me. I know because I even “tested” it once, I broadcasted it on the radio news for your birthday and you adored it.

Yes, you are cool. The famous ridiculous text message –  my first declaration to you – I sent it at 3 am in the morning and you wrote me back after 5 minutes: “heavy stuff your text message lady ! ” and with at least three smileys. I never need you to say it back to me. It was my deal. I said it first, just to get rid of “that” problem – my problem.

I know you are cool. I have sent you some of my writings. The main protagonist was always YOU. “You mixed a bit of reality and a bit of fiction, not bad, not bad…”, you said to me. There has never been any fiction. I did not invent anything. It was always you in my stories.

So this is for you, the day you read it. Just as simple as that.

No-win situations

1. You once said: “You love me because I am leaving”.

2. I once thought: “Maybe because I cannot have you”.

3. I can live without you but I don’t think I can live without loving you.

4. I want my love for you to last even if for that, I might need to love you less.

5. There will be others after you but they will never matter as much as you did.

6. I once read: “Unrequited love is not love”. I truly don’t care.