“The more I speak with her the more I feel pulled down into the whirlpool of that bottomless pit of love. It is bad time for males in this present epoch of so many Circe’s posing in the convenient guise of Penelope’s.”
MOVIE PLOT: A motion picture movie stand-in stunt man gets roped into posing as a mentally deficient moron, soon to be heir, in a unsavory plot spun by the male nurse to cash in on a fortune in family inheritance. Yet along the way unexpectedly becomes entangled in a bout of conscience and and enraptured by unexpected feelings of love for the only member of the family that is not contaminated by avarice. One that the ruse demands he must treat as his sister and not like the one love of his life.
Oh dear! This is very inconvenient for somebody who has already settled his life. Settled into a life of extinguishing any sense of emotions any further. Not allowing himself to feel anything anymore. And now imposed upon by this dilemma! One becomes beset over the years by their own self-engendered fantasies. Preferring to live in a dusty urn amidst the ashes of the past, trying to erase the presence of a future. All in the name of some vain hope of returning back to a now impossible world of things permanently lost never to be experienced again. Recycling memories and feelings into convenient packages like some ancient Egyptian arranging their tomb for an empty promise of a next life. As if somehow in this coming next life everything will be renewed to restart at that point to continue on while erasing all traces of when everything started to go bad. The supposed transformation in such a scheme of unqualified forgiveness in the retread of a ‘better you’.
But that is not how life works . . .
I am stuck in my own museum amidst the endless catalogue of everything past. The edifice of same that over these successive years seems to, little by little, crumble away. That initial appreciation of a lasting magic being steadily leached away during these successive years from all those items that I can’t even seem to consider parting with. And what then is left? The fact that I may have haphazardly almost by mistake stumbled upon an Autumn love? Someone that my lesser self would like the convenience of mind to toss off to being nothing more than part of an ongoing delusional fantasy that has been to often suffered along the way? Someone that represents a life changing challenge that I do not know that I can ever rise up to meet? To make a lasting bridge to another human heart and give them all my love and trust. Some one that is assuredly no more perfect than myself with foibles and foreign ways of seeing the world that I cannot imagine. Her imperfect nature unfortunately being too much like my very own. Someone coming from another world so strange that I do not know if I will ever be able to understand it. What then?
Someone that affects me not simply because I am attracted by the closeness of her presence. But someone that I can’t toss off to idle worship at the altar of some Pygmalion statuary before a temple dedicated to infatuation. One whose own vulnerability seems to encroach upon the tender portions of my heart to melt all my own delusions into a puddle. And then to allow me to see them for what they really are. Simply, longstanding illusions. Like some unconscious Icarus, I have always feared to fall. To inadvertently lose those same fallacies that have kept me safely believing in my own immortality. Preventing me from the danger of descending into the actual reality of being nothing more than a very vulnerably fallible human being. All those previous episodes of rashly descending below the cloud of this tenuous Godhood leading to suffering both pains of disappointment after the initial pangs of passion. Where can this lead to based on so many years of what I have come to know? Another train wreck? And if I take it seriously as the grave, then what will this lead to? Another fateful wicked ambush? Another life’s lesson to add to an eternal listing of the same! Of just some final stop in the dead of night along some road on the way to limbo.
Oh, I am so good at conjuring experience in words so artfully prosaic! A life of trying so hard in one way or another to study those acceptable means of being able to do so. And yet is there anything there that is worth expressing that will do me any good? It is said that life never provides any second chances in this world. You keep blowing things off and you end up with naught. But it seems more than a conscious decision too. It is something that you can’t help. Something unavoidable that you stumble into but try to avoid. Maybe for the best of reasons on the behalf of everyone concerned? Yet in the end, inevitable. Inevitable as that same old human comedy that you find yourself starring as the prize buffoon again ,and again, and again. You can’t help doing the same. In the end, not with the best of all possible choices in humanity as you know it. But perhaps with the most perfectly suited!
Passion at 5 AM. Why does one bother to talk to themselves? Things seem much more defined in the light of day than when cognated at night without. There is a difference between words one addresses to themselves and those that one voices aloud. Sometimes the two don’t seem to correspond though one actually means to express the very same thing. Maybe so? Maybe not? What to do? That fork in the road. An opportunity offered. An opportunity to be denied. Wanting to do the right think not just for one’s self. But for someone who has the misfortune to possibly, perhaps, maybe, fall in love with you. AIs one caught up in this as just a means of escape? Or is there something else about this? Is one dealing with another who might have lost their mind? Or just dealing with another that is as insane as you are? Yet you can see eye to eye in a way that is impossible with anyone else. How can one imagine?
And then Hollywood is there to barge through the swinging doors as usual. The usual avatars to watch and to expect a happy ending. The one that rarely occurs for everybody. I need an oasis. I’ve been in the desert too long. To lay beneath the cool palms while leisurely bathing within ebulliently flowing waters. Saved for a while from the midst of unrelenting heat stress. Stupid analogies, stupid man. Trying to make more of something that is really there. Or isn’t! Is it all just a fable or fantasy?If I let myself go to drop away over the edge of this precipice then where do I end up when I take the long fall? At what point to I hit bottom and shatter in a million pieces broken beyond repair? I have been convinced for far too long that this had already happened! But maybe not? Maybe not at all. Maybe more is still intact than I could have ever imagined?I don’t know.
It was a beautiful day for a hanging. The weather was so cold and wet and rainy that you couldn’t look past your thumb. He lay in his cold bed half asleep. A hat tucked over his eyes to keep out the warm ceiling glow reflected from street lights and flashes of distant lightning that was still upon him. It was all so dramatically theatrical. He thought of her. Her, that her, the one that he was supposed to call just before sunrise. A certain sense of anything, save trepidation. A certain sense of awe and, “I don’t know.” He had been drifting in and out of dreams. Still in the grip of dreams that it hurt to come back from into the real world. Just like in an extended penitentiary stay within this long daily unrelenting waking reality. In his dream world he had met her in the library. Or someone like her. A younger woman, completely mysterious, coming up unhesitatingly to him. Someone that he could all too easily seek to desire but he dare not have. A someone who now standing almost toe to toe ringed her arms around his waist and pulled him towards her. And he, without the hesitation of a second thought, reciprocating by putting his arms around her. The two of them brushing lips on the edge of a kiss he knew he would have to yield. And then they were dancing slowly, hard against each other. It hurt to tear himself away. Because not leaving would mean that he was betraying another.
But then, who was he worrying about betraying after all? Was he betraying that fantasy that he had been living for so many long and desperate years? That emotional anesthesia that kept him from feeling, kept him from connecting, that kept him apart from others. Was it some animus sent here to test him? Sent here to tempt him like some all too obvious Circe. To prevent him from recalling his own one and only Penelope? Love after all can be confusing. And he was in great fear that he was once again falling in love. That horrible, terrible, wonderful confusing feeling. As if horses trying to escape the mounting flames within their burning barn go unexpectedly running towards the inferno all aglow to jump in. His own self-destruction seeming unavoidable. It was all so terrible and yet wonderful together at the same time.
As he lay there with his heart aching in a manner that did not suggest that it would stop. But quite the reverse. It dawned upon him that Cupid had loosed an arrow. Where Achilles had shown the good sense to run though he got it in the ankle. He was a much easier target having taken a bolt smack in the middle of his heart. And it hurt. Now what did he figure! Something fatal? A mortal wounding to the life that he had known up until this point. One that seemed as if it was beginning to fade. Maybe to a point where it should have been all along. Into the past. Into oblivion. Only fools, he thought, dare tread any further. This seemed to be a sign.
He thought of those things that he loved. Or rather felt the fact of their presence again. How close they were. So much so that he barely had to reach out to be able to touch them. The lips, his lips, hearts beating. In the end, as one in a slow, steady, tricky palpitation. His exuberance being something that felt akin the a heart attack but was perhaps much more deadly. In fact, fatal. Was there any possibility available in waking life to extinguish this pain? When the window of opportunity would be nailed shut and it’s window shade flapping somewhere. Would this be in mockery of everything that he tried to restrain? An obsoleted commodity now.
The room seemed alive. He could sense all those others that were always there above him and below him in the building laying at rest like he did. He stared intently upward blankly gazing as he lay still wondering how she felt. Could she feel him from a far distance? Sense his passions in terms of how he now felt about her? Or was it just nonsense just to hope? That’s what concerned him. Was this just another vain wandering hope yet again? A misdirected arrow cast haphazardly in his direction. It would just be another crash and burn. The mutual convenience of voicing it as a misunderstanding or unexpected soon to be discovered temporal expediences. He was just a love doll. Just another rundown tourist location on the backroads route to somebody else’s oblivion. He sighed at the abject mortality embodied by all this. How sad and yet how wonderful at the same time. Where would fate lead him now? Towards what unexpected happy ending or invisible ruin to be suffered for another indefinite ongoing eternity?
She was to depart later that morning upon a plane. He lay back into the pillow suffering the occasional but inevitable growl of jet engines rising and fading in the distance as they past high overhead. Now to begin the habit of worry about someone else yet once more another time again. The realization of the finality of life and its unexpected end draped over him. The possibility of uncharted occurrences that could drive him back into despair. What had he done that was so wrong so many countless lifetimes ago in eons past? A feeling of Prometheus encumbered by his heart as if the eagle sent by unspecified deities to tear him apart. To awaken again in pieces that reconfigured could never quite mend. All this was so vainglorious and didn’t exploit anything!
He felt in a frenzy to telephone her and maybe he would! He pictured himself getting in his car and making his way to her house in this lingering inky calm. Having it out to test her feelings about him one way or another. Gathering courage to face up to the possibility of rejection once again. Knowing from past experience that such an extreme misplaced act would result in extreme consequences. And then something even worse descended upon him to shroud thoughts. To call her and ask to stay with her and hearing her say, “Yes.” He could sense the two of them together trembling at the possibility of, “What next?”
She was getting to him. He felt mortal again. Maybe too much so! Now once again fallen having tumbled down the slopes of Mount Olympus like some buffoon. Laying there on his back contemplating permissions that he probably did not have. Ones that he would find out with the morning light.
“One, two. buckle my shoe!” He surrendered in the end and called her pulling her out of a dead sleep. And as usual, they talked a pile of rubbish. The spoken words being thinly veiled. And so the two of them continued on playing a game, each one hiding behind vague sentences conspicuously mounting an artificial form of cheer. As if both were still minding the boundaries of the other’s fences while maintaining their own still in place. The un-shown barbs of feigned ignorance remaining prevalent to fend off any behavior untold. Yet hanging over all like the smoke in a poker tabled room a promise of a melding between them occurring incrementally. This steady drip as if a trickle of water heading down towards a stream on the way to a stream into a river eventually expecting the possibility of a union with a vast ocean. He tried to tell her in his own imperfect way that when he dove into being in love, he carried no safety belts. There was no reserve. He would be dangerous in love. Dangerous to himself. What might be infatuation . . .
She was dangerous to him. For now, in the present, he feared that he could lose his heart. And what if? What if she took it? She’d use it like a pillow. A cushion to prop herself up. But he’d be forgotten in the equation. This latent fear of mortality wasn’t fair. It wasn’t fair to be kept upon a precipice of a “Maybe“,”Perhaps” or even “Possibly?” In his way he tried not to make an even greater fool of himself. Yet in the final mix he could only surmise he most probably had. Maybe it was inevitable? Maybe that was his penitence for having his heart in a straight jacket for so long trying to fend off emotions. He told her that he had been suffering a long term standing bout of emotional anesthesia. And emotional amnesia. But now . . . each calling higher.
A FINAL PASSING DREAM
He found himself traveling through the countryside of England. The train dating from a bygone era of empire and genteel well tended scenes. A canal running parallel to the tracks the narrow harbor for a succession of pleasure craft. Each boat representative of a well-known class of style and grace from Chris Crafts to different varieties of sailboats. The distance between these congruent paths occasionally narrowing to allow a view that provided the unexpected view of the canal’s bottom and the fact that it was dry of water. The long display of boats revealed as having no bottoms to their hulls. The long line of same being merely artful advertisements constructed in movie set reality.