Wednesday, April 18, 2007


Addiction, Obsession, Love

Waiting until he could be sure she was sleeping peacefully, he held her close to him, caressing the skin on her back while her breathing became rhythmic. Once she felt exhaustion, she was out like the proverbial light, and he knew it would not be a long wait. Smiling softly to himself, he was aware of the thousand and one details of intimate knowledge about her, his mind held in reservoir, though the swift and almost effortless return of those long-buried memories left him feeling uneasy. In but a few minutes, he succeeded in wiping out three years spent bereft of her, as if they had always been together. Forgetting those years could only lead to more pain.

Blissfully unaware of all things but what her dreams revealed to her, she rolled over on her back, the sheet resting near the womanly curves just above her waist. Filtered light from the full moon revealed small naked breasts slowly moving up and down in cadence with deep sleeping breaths. Her nipples, even in their relaxed state were almost taut, standing as two crowns upon round towers of ivory. She always complained that one breast was noticeably rounder than the other, usually coupling the complaint that, with the years and gravity’s relentless influence, her breasts were beginning to sag. Yet in his eyes, they were beautifully sculpted identical twins, now resting as soft mounds upon her chest. Years ago, he used to joke, calling them the “pert and perky twins”. Yet tonight, in the hours that led up to this moment, those breasts had been a symbol of much that he secretly desired, fruits that he should consequently have never tasted ever again.

In this same bed, in this same bedroom, in this same apartment she had owned for many years, the ghosts began to whisper to him. The apartment even smelled the same, though now the bedroom filled with the deep musky after-scent of sexual joining. In a silent, practiced movement, he carefully swung off the lumpy mattress and out of the familiar bed in one fluid motion. His naked body ended up in the old, half-broken chair that sat at the computer desk in the corner of the room.

During the three years since the last time he had visited her apartment and vowed never to do so again, it had remained pretty much the same. Besides mementos from her last disastrous relationship that had ended in a broken engagement, nothing had really changed. This sense of familiarity should have calmed him and offered some sense of balance. Instead, it was scaring the living daylights out of him.

Before their lovemaking, lovemaking that he was well aware some would call ‘desperate’ while others, more discerning and perhaps more romantic, might have seen see as ‘passionate’ (though it was neither and both), he understood that a decision had to be made. Although, in his defense, he assumed the decision had been made when she walked out on him three years beforehand. The mistake, as he now suspected, was in killing the mind without killing the heart — what is called in modern relationship parlance “failure to insure proper closure”. By ignoring this need, they both hurtled along, two blind children caught on the rollercoaster of life, trying to avoid each other, knowing full well that fate would sooner or later wield its power over them once again. Today, unexpectedly, the time had come to end this rollercoaster ride and decide which daunting path must be followed. Yet, if it had not been for his dog Smokie he may have been able to avoid the whole painful episode. Then, again, he realized, if he did not have a dog, he still may have decided to take that solitary Saturday afternoon walk and consequently may not have avoided this heartache. Maybe if the park had not been so inviting. Or maybe if he had turned left on a path instead of going right. Or right instead of going left. Maybe if he had not met his neighbor and stood to chat for ten minutes, he would have missed it altogether.

Or maybe it happened exactly the way it was meant to happen. Maybe, no matter where his legs took him and no matter what time of day or night, they led him just where they were meant to lead. Maybe, no matter what turn he made, no matter how early or late he decided to walk or get into his car… Perhaps fate is not determined by the lackadaisical whims of chance. Maybe, just maybe, he realized in cold, paralyzing fear, there are simply no maybe’s in this lifetime

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