Last night I had a dream about the one-time love of my life. ( The Backstory)
I haven’t talked to to him in a month, which is not so unusual. We’re friends who keep in touch now and then, when we can.
I have been singing the songs, without regret. (Hello From the Other Side)
I have been happy.
(I am happy.)
(–the hot air balloons rising over the park
–that jogger, who saw us, smirked, and then nearly ran into a tree
–the third floor of the library, so impatient to feel you
–every where, everything
every time, every day, even the last)
…the memories are always there but folded away, like winter clothes. He and I are the one thing I remember most, in the crazy patchwork of my mutilated memory.
And last night I dreamed about him.
There are no choices to make, no questions of this one or that one. What we were is gone, what we have is friendship.
Still, I woke up with my heart hurting.
I have yet to say the words to Lover. I, who spend emotion like a wealthy woman buying shoes in a fancy department store, without thought or care for cost.
I have yet to say the words. I hold them in my mouth like a gold coin, tasting the mint and wondering if it is true.
He has never said them, either.
He, too, has a deep love in his past, so much a part of him that I know her name.
(Her name is Darcy.)
I hear it in his voice, when he recounts something from his past, twenty years ago or more. There is no jealousy; these are things, events, people, who have made him who he is, what he is.
I have always thought that the ability to love fully, recklessly, without thought of hurt or failure or permanent scarring was a thing that could only be accomplished when a person is young, before one knows too much.
And that is what I am wondering, again, right now, in the early dark, when all the world is quiet, sleeping, but I am not, with a heart full of hurt.