i don’t know how to do this.
i don’t know how to open myself up, and leave my heart out for people, when i’m just not sure of the outcome. although that statement is pretty ironic, considering i’m sharing my soul to complete strangers who don’t know me, and likely don’t care.
i know that it’s what people have done for a millennia; give their hearts away, to lovers and friends, only to have their hearts dashed on the rocks or squished like grapes being made for wine.
and sometimes that’s how i feel it is for me. that the bigger purpose in life, humanity as a whole, is so much more important than my tiny life. that i am the grape. and the juice flows out of me, spills from my skin, just to feed all of mankind a thimble of wine. but am i only the juice? isn’t there more for ME as an individual? i’d like to hope so…but i’m wary.
i’ve spent my whole life hiding myself from people. it was a necessary part of my life, to hide my reality from those around me. my person, my soul has kind of been on the lam for forever. worried about people learning the truth about me, my dark secrets, the skeletons in my closet, the shame that i wear like a scarf around my neck. sometimes i will let out some little part of me, some white flag or token offered to a friend, but i’m always looking for a sign that i must retreat. i’m always ready to pick up my belongings and take to the hills if there is any movement that looks suspicious.
and i guess i’m being challenged right now, and i’m not sure how to proceed. so many situations in my past have made me wall myself up in a tower, like a creepy Edgar Allan Poe kitty in a horror story of love and not love. so i’m used to that, i’m used to the comfort of obliteration. i’m used to not having what i desire or deserve, because i’m too busy spending all my energy hiding my beauty and uniqueness from the world, and don’t see those around me who would actually love me, and treat me well, and honor my life instead of try to destroy it. and here i am now, faced with uncertainty, and fear, and small situations that mean a great deal to me, even if they don’t mean a great deal. and i question motives, and intentions, and actions. i look for hidden information in others, that might reveal to me that i am cared for, or longed for, or sought after. because i can’t always see it, even if it is right in front of me. because i’m used to cutting, not binding. i’m used to running from, not running to. and my soul wants desperately to pick up its skirts and take off at a breakneck speed, and dash away to the safety of my tower, and pull its hair up so that no one can ever follow.
but my heart doesn’t seem to notice. my heart just jumps back in the vat, ready to be trounced again, ready for the wine of life to flow from her veins. and what else can i do, but support the alcoholics of the world with my life essence?
Love may be my greatest downfall.
That is not to say that love will be the thing that brings me down; my Achilles’ Heel; the thorn in my side.
For Love – I believe – will redeem me. Finally. And thoroughly. I believe it is with Love, and through Love that I will achieve my greatest deeds. Write the best poetry, the most exciting novels. Discover the most hidden truths, sharing them with my loved ones, and perhaps the world, if it decides to be nice to me. Love will help me to realize myself, and my true potential. And Love will give me the missing pieces, to help me complete the tasks I have yet to accomplish; like turning cheap flatware into silver medallions, and finally mixing my never ending potion of eternal life.
Love is the downfall IN me. Wait. Love is…if there is something … well yeah ok, I guess Love is my Achilles’ Heel. Fine. I was trying to read my “book of the month” club book. And I don’t often do this…in fact, I can’t remember when I’ve ever done this, but I read a fair amount, so I imagine I must have done it before. I flipped ahead! I flipped through pages and pages of the story, looking to see if they got together or not! This was not as easy a task as it could have been; this isn’t a romance we’re reading. This is an ensemble piece, story upon story of lives intertwining and lacing together like an ice skater’s boot. And people come and go and change, and the story doesn’t stop, just waits in the wings for a while, until the other players get the hell of stage finally, so the lovers can get back to canoodling or looking longingly at each other for two minutes before the next tragedy whisks them off stage again. And really, there hasn’t been canoodling. Or much long looking.
And maybe that’s what has me riveted, and cheating the author by skipping the other lives that exist in this novel, just to get to the lovers. But that’s the thing…he’s done it so well. He’s created the angst of love, and the anticipation so accurately.
It’s not a romance like out of the Harelequin novels…there’s no talk of pulsing neck veins, or throbbing…headaches, or voluptuous damsels. There aren’t wise cracking heroes or muscular main men that save the day or slay the dragon. Yes, there is talk of castles. A few of the characters happen to be Irish, and there are two love stories unfolding here. But these stories are REAL sounding. Two people falling in love, who are nobodies, and trying to live their lives, and afraid of committing to this love, but afraid of not committing. A love that is so intense it is palpable, and vibrates in the room, making others uncomfortably aware that something in the world is frenzied, and heated, and stifling…is it the weather? Longing that is so frustrating it makes your chest squeeze as you read about it, and makes your brow furrow as you nervously bite your nails, wondering if he will finally screw up his courage and stay with her in her life.
The whole book isn’t about this love, it maybe isn’t about love at all. Love is maybe just part of what happens, PART of life.
And that’s my problem, I guess.
I’m a romantic. When the story is unfolding around me, I want to see where the love is. When the movie is dancing across the screen, I look for the lovers.
It’s not like I think love is the only thing there is. But I seem to buy into that old Beatles tune, Love is all you need. Yes there is work, and politics. Yes there is school, and art, and self expression and writing until you aren’t sure what words mean anymore. There is food and wine, football and foosball (thank the gods) and all the things that make life beautiful and worth while. But love is in ALL of that. And without love, none of that would matter to me. I mean, I am able to enjoy all of these things whether single or happily involved. But love is what makes my heart get a beat on.
And so, I suppose, Love will be the end of me.