Moon in Capricorn

A child who was never meant to be. Ten years ago today my son was born and died. Many years before it was around this time that my father left and changed my life. Yet still I love October. It is not the season’s fault that people leave. People leave, one way or another, all the time, in all the seasons of life. People die. That’s the greatest leaving, most permanent and profound. People go off to live out other lives. Sometimes they even stay right there, but lose interest or otherwise change or psychologically move on. I change. I leave places and people and priorities. People who have meant so much to me, have been my center for a time, change in my mind as I form new relationships with myself and others. Converging with some significant other, then growing apart, the frame changes. All these leavings, leaves falling, becoming particles over time mingling into rich earth for seeds to grow in.

I tried again to talk Celia into contacting Danny, or letting me. She doesn’t want to go there. She feels, thinks, rationalizes, that she has made her peace with what they had. She doesn’t want drama, or, I think, to take the chance that he won’t come, that this will be a final humiliation and renewal of pain. The kids, my half-siblings, are pretty much grown. He must have gotten well fed up with Gwen by now. That’s probably my fantasizing, though, not fair to make Celia pay the price of my desire for a happy ending of sorts. More rationally, what good would it do Danny to come back here to watch her leave him, profoundly and permanently?

Maybe it is what he deserves. Do I get to judge that beyond my private fantasy? We can’t decide other people’s lives, rearrange them to suit our sense of balance or aesthetics. That way lies madness. People will do what they do for their own, no matter how illogical or self-defeating, reasons. Look at how I allowed Mark to take over my life. Yeah, I was pathetically young and stupid, but I had known something about integrity, personal responsibility, insistence on self-expression. I know, I wanted to lord it over those high and mighty high school rubes that I was the ultra-sophisticated rebel lover of an older and extraordinary man. He was married, an artist, a maverick iconoclast, more than they could ever be or attract. Now I know, looking back cringing, what a low-life worm and psychotic waste he really was. I may have fooled myself that we had this intense wonderful passionate love affair. Looking back, it was never about love. I had no clue what that word translated to beyond lust and excitement. What I loved was the emotional high of flirtation with danger, consummated by turning over my life to a crazy roller-coaster ride of vicarious insanity or folie a deux.

Celia didn’t even try to control me. I was in no condition to be controlled. She did attempt to get me to see what I was doing. When sarcasm and simple truth didn’t sway me, she muttered dire predictions interspersed with wishing me well, assuring me I would come to my senses, and offering safe harbor when that would become necessary. I, of course, wild know it all teen, ignored it all as calcified ignorance, even obstructionism against my superior instinct. She was no woman to be lecturing me on love having made such a mess of it for herself.

Celia and Danny met in college where he was a well-admired established star amongst the counter-culture crowd, and she was a studious mouselike scholarship nerd, admiring from afar. The Spring he came back, well into the semester, after his mother had died, he was too subdued, melancholy, no longer entertaining to his adoring fans. Celia no longer worshipped from afar. She loved up close and personal, giving him what he needed at a crucial time of transformation. They clicked, each having what the other needed to be whole.

Neither Mark nor I had the basis to make anything whole. We couldn’t even make a child who could survive as a separate life. I don’t blame him. I don’t blame me anymore. I don’t really blame Danny anymore, or Celia, for not staying whole together. It’s not about who is right or wrong. We make connections that seem to be inevitable at the time, because they are. Then times change. We change. Life changes us, each according to our own inclinations. While we are connecting, in that sacred space of commonality, we are given opportunities to incorporate an expanding vocabulary, a more intricate map of the territory of life.

Yeah, spinning out philosophisizing. What I feel is so much more than I seem able to say. The sweet clear air of October evokes such poignancy. To every season so much life attaches. Leaves of scribbled pages mellowing; words constantly recycling as their underlying meanings deepen with age.