Moon in Taurus

After Mark was dead, our son was dead, I remember feeling hollow, pointless. I had thought I had what I wanted. I really was happy. I had my very own life, my own family on my own terms. Defiantly, I intended to name him Lucifer, the morning star. We would call him Luke I supposed. Mark insisted on his last name. Luke Dante who never was. Everyone leaves, bare trees with no certainty of Spring.

I felt hollow, yet angry, hurt, yet again abandoned, cast from Eden … if I want to go there. Poor, pitiful me. Is it some lesson I’m not getting about self-sufficiency or compassion? I really thought I had shown I could go out on my own, that I could love unselfishly. Maybe it’s not about lessons at all, but just life, random inevitabilities.

Celia took me home from the hospital. She took care of me, part nurse, part loving friend, no demands or recriminations. I was, by turn, sullenly morose, viciously outrageous. She took to talking to me about bits of her life, almost randomly. It was like she described little vignettes she had thought about until they became objective stories, not personal to her. Maybe she was trying to show solidarity in disappointment. Maybe she was just looking for something to say in response to my silence. Maybe she had decided that I now had enough experience of my own to share these secreted memories, to be a confidant.

She had not felt free to share her feelings or serious thoughts with her sisters as sisters do. She was more of a young but more reliable third parent to them. Marie was something of an older somewhat disdainful but loving sister to her. Helen, who was closer to Celia in age, would sweep Celia out to her studio to see her latest painting, talk of art and life in that breathless excited way she had when fully engaged. Celia loved them as family. I think she was hurt when Helen so abruptly deserted us, as was I.

People are always having to get away. It’s not you. They love you. But they have to go. Did I do that to Tom? But I am returning, as I have to Celia. A different, older I, but still the essential me will be with him in the Spring. Celia beyond any doubt will be in hospice by then. She doesn’t want me with her at the end. She says she doesn’t want to have to deal with what others are feeling during her final experience. It is not something she wants to share. Her life has been a lesson in self-reliance. She has learned to depend on herself as ever-present friend. This departure for her is a private matter.

I will have to pack up Pandora and find an apartment back in the thick of my once and future life, or whatever life I am led to, back with Tom.

He would be cast as one of those English gentleman officers in period romantic fiction. Always correctly polite, he manages to convey an unseen sneer when not acting sincerely. Thus, we inner circle few always know exactly what he is saying. He awaits my return, but not alone without consolation, or companionship in his black silk sheets. He is staying well entertained while missing my presence, assured that this time will pass. I don’t know that he won’t leave me or I him, permanently, some day. I suppose unless we die together one or the other is inevitable. Long before death parts us, we may well disband for other reasons. We may well be in each other’s blood, be in love forever. That’s not what keeps people together. I don’t know what does. People stay until they leave. Sometimes they return with tales to tell and scars to display. Sometimes they’re gone. Of course most of us, for the most part, glide by each other as strangers, maybe here and there relating through some little bit of business or sharing a joke. People are unreliable. All we really have is ourselves. But no, not entirely the truth. We have people, some people, for whatever time we share. The stories, the jokes, the hugs, it all adds to the whole store of experiences we can build up for ourselves. We are made more by the people who have been with us. Yeah, some people, if we let them, if we are complicit, tear us down, take away from who we had been. I guess in a way that’s adding too, depending on what we do with it. Art, you know, all those crazy feelings, trying to make sense of them, move them around sensually, find the hook, the core that pulls it all together into a form that can be shared, sold, put on public display. Yeah, spinning out to avoid getting stuck in confusion.

We get inside each other, then leave those left behind to continue the relationship alone.

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