Sunday, February 17, 2008

Choices

This is about a woman coming home from a four-day trip and standing on the corner of Broadway and 12th with her bags at ten o’clock at night waiting for her husband
This is about him being late and her wondering which other more important thing has delayed him; a call to his lover, one more email, a decision to take the long way.

This is about seeing his car on the other side of the street and the way she has to cross,
how instantly cross she becomes

This is about the shut of the car door and the pull into late night traffic
The way she doesn’t reach over the stick to bridge the gap, no hello honey kiss
The distance, the disappointment that has come out of thin air;
Suddenly, glad to see him, then angry out of nowhere.

This is about a conversation earlier in the day with her friend about how loving people heals us. About how we should love because it feels good in us, not because people are deserving of our love. This is about the way her friend nodded and kept staring at her as if that was the freshest idea she’d ever heard

This is about the man and the woman and how the conversation in the car moves to the kids and what’s happening tomorrow.
This is about domestic life.
About the slightly bossy way he asked her to lock the front door after they got home
The flat spans of dessert as they lay in bed, neither moving to connect. This is the mountain of shoulds, the way she sidles up next to him, her stomach facing his hip, her hand on his chest.

This is about a late night conversation where she suggests they talk about telling their 10-year-old about the lovers because it might be worse when she does find out and feels she’s been lied to
This is about him saying no
How she turns away

This is about coming home but not feeling at home
About a soft blanket of depression she reserves for this man,
About silence and exhaustion and retreat
A decision not to bring up money until after Valentines Day because it would just ruin things
And the long list she imagined making of all the ways she loved him; everything he’d love to hear, how happy it would make him
How down the drain that idea went, for no good reason.

This is about the way we turn away as easily as we turn towards
This is about choices,
Reasons to love, reasons not to
This is about a woman standing alone at 10 at night in downtown Oakland with her bags, which are packed. This is about not knowing if she’s coming or going.

7 comments:

Dale said...

Homecomings are hard. That's when you see the drift, when what you remember with your head smacks up against what you remember with your heart.

But remember, being tired probably accounts for a lot :-)

Hugs. Holding you in my heart.

ffejretso said...

This is about real life...real love..real choices..real-ity

In those bags you were holding - WE all are holding - are expectations. So hard to let them go - when you KNOW what you want - YOU know...

The question becomes - once you know, THEN what.

Does it take more strength to Stay? or to Leave...

Bethany said...

I followed this link from Lizardek, and I'm floored by the ache and tenderness and poignant flux of emotion present in this post. It's a beautiful sadness, like a softly melting icicle, and I hope so much for you that the holding onto love holds your heart together.

monicac2 said...

Beautiful. And I can relate.

Jana Holsenback said...

You poem resonated with me deeply. If fact, it expressed the complexity of my emotions within my marriage better than I ever could.

Even though I know that writing does not resolve your pain, nor does reading resolve mine. . . it does make a difference.

Thank you.

Anonymous said...

Just found your site, and this is fantastic. I would guess that every woman can identify with this entry. So, so real.

-c

Anonymous said...

Unlike the others, I
can't find words to express
how it made me feel.
So all I can say is, thanks.
x