Love with her was pure irrationality and perfection in one sweeping, sudden fury.
The lancia boat I was lying inside on my back teetered side-to-side, creaking like trees moving by the wind’s hand. I felt the ancient splinters vying for my salt-dried skin. The sea splashed over the side of the boat, tickling my limbs, reminding me with each tongue of water that I was amongst the rawness of the sea, which could take me at any moment in one swipe. The sea reminding me of my immortality instigated the memory of Valentina. I closed my eyes, seeing her petal silk lips whispering if love, if love, if love, over, and over again until our lips were inches apart, almost kissing. Almost. It almost happened. Then I saw her hands dousing creamy white lotion onto my skin. Her hands pined for my skin. But she had already faded into a memory, as if what happened between us occurred many years ago, when it was only days ago. There was still more of her I had yet to experience; I feared this, and yet it thrilled me at the same time. She lingered, waiting for me to take the next step. One part of me wanted her to disappear, but never too far away from reach.
Harper and August cruise down Ocean Blvd strip.
Car lights flash, clap, flash.
The two roll down their windows. Harper looks over briefly at August whose head hangs out the window.
Harper smiles. The first.
The honking riffraff bursts the sensual ocean whisper and salt breeze.
Get. Some. Lotus. In. Your. Life.
A fire romps within the dwellings of a kept creature, I, a lost girl influenced by the masses, a timeless roaring rage to keep purity alive all in the name of doing what is right. Life seems long when the years trickle into a puddle, merging with otherness into sameness. It’s the acceptance of hiding which makes life normal. Sameness, hiding, long, acceptance.
I felt, I thought, I ceased. Time decayed after her.
The word lust is too sturdy and clear; whatever it was, it felt fragile and hazy in my bones and mind, as if for the past month I wandered lost in a foreign nightclub.
Emerson said in Nature, “A man is a God in ruins.”
I am a broken statue— Donatello’s muse project gone wrong— mind chipped and irreparable.
But I come back to her, if even just in memory, and then I am whole.
I awaited during the lazy morning for this isolation. While all the others padded the stone courtyard musing upon their fresh pressed orange juice and tales of the crinkly-faced sun villagers who adore old lawless Virgil, I paced in a total wreck of a mood to get out.
The asters and carnations blooming near the eating table angered me for their sweet beauty that lived just for the sake of living and nothing else. The sun, always the sun out and about, irritated me, as the pits of my white shirt were already soaked through. Trickling water from the gold fiori water spout pulled at my chest as the water made its way to an idle, content state in the lilypad pond. My breathing became aware of me. I couldn’t swallow the grapefruit topped with sugar. The orange juice tasted dull.
Mother what is it?
My tongue pressed the backs of the front teeth in detest of… mater, mētēr, madre, mother. They contemplated me as if I were crazy or sick. Well, perhaps I am both.
“You’ll kill me if you stop.” -André Aciman, Call Me by Your Name
Prose autore, poet of the Modernist Era, womanizer, lifelong starving Bohemian artist in Greenwich Village, and deemed “too beat” by Ginsberg: Maxwell Bodenheim.