On Love

On Love

So I asked her if she trusted me.

She said yes.

So I kissed her.

The first time I was kissed, I cried just like a one year old. I couldn’t catch my breath, the emotions were so overpowering. Although it’s 23 years ago now, I remember that night so vividly, with such detail and crushing depth that I’m always in the moment. It’s nailed there, never dying, never ending. An eternal, shocking kiss.

I’m a materialist, I don’t believe in god or ghosts or whatnot. And yet, I cannot deny the magic that crackles around love, the energy that is arcing between two (or more) people.

Sometimes the energy attacks us. We dwindle and crack in withdrawal. Feeling so smugly whole in the presence of our loves, their absence chops us into tiny pieces, every cut savoured as much as it is feared. Being with them fills us up, being without them drains us. In a maddening way, we feel less than we were before we met them. But that isn’t true, in positive relationships. What’s actually happening is that encountering them has revealed how much we were missing.

Who, in all sanity, would want this? Who would choose it? I wouldn’t and I suspect you probably wouldn’t.

But, oh! Oh! – those other times…

To look into someone’s eyes and to see them gaze back at you, unwavering and fearless. Open and vulnerable, seemingly weak yet actually immensely strong in their defencelessness. To be able to talk in your own argot of references and allusions, shorthand born from shared experiences and commonality beyond every norm. Eventually, to become telepathic, the synchronisation being so entire and so undeniable that it guides interactions into the magical, however much we rationalise the spell cast in terms of cueing or suggestion.

To know that someone, somewhere, just gets it. Needs no explanation or justification. They won’t fall back on the bourgeois failsafes of ridicule or embarrassment because they just get it.

If I think of the women in my heart, the feelings above leap up. I feel nervous or I start trembling. Occasionally, I find myself crying and then have to rush out to the Westfield or wait till I can dance it all off. Because, mostly, I’m thinking of love lost, love passed and past. I’m thinking of the biggest love in my life and how every day without her screeches and claws at me, tearing through every armour I try to forge, pitilessly. I wonder when those feelings won’t be hovering just at the edge of my vision: won’t look, can’t look – don’t look.

But sometimes, amazingly, I’m thinking of understanding and care returned. Of patience, courage and intellect that makes me feel timid and so, so foolish in comparison. Of a calmness and sobriety that shames me.

Of someone who replies when I say hello.

And then, I feel happy.