Thursday, April 29, 2010

If I don't write it now ... when?

Listening to two old songs on the radio this morning and here come thoughts of somebody I never name but often mention here. A very personal and special garland today, made not of flowers but words--the only kind of weaving I know. This is for you, Gemeau.

For My Mate

I don't know why I love you
but i do

That's not true - the part about
not knowing why.
Let me count the whys ...

It's all those little things:
The way you take care
with everything you do.
The way you always thank me
for even the most ordinary of meals.
Wine, bread, cheese, soup.
That you take an interest in my
interests, though they are not yours.
That self-absorption is not something
you ever indulge in.
A random remark on my part
about an object I admire but think unaffordable,
frivolous even
--definitely not necessary
and eight months later, out of the blue
there it is, from your hands to mine.
I had completely forgotten.
You hadn't.

And just when I think I know
everything there is to know about you,
you go and surprise me,
with yet another hidden treasure
from the depths of you.

You're always there
holding up the universe--
for me
for the family
and every lost, starved animal
in the neighborhood.
You laugh when I say you're like a saint.
Now I ask you,
what kind of person
sees his mate's little flaws
as quirky endearments?
Anybody else would frown
raise an eyebrow
but you just smile
as if to say
"That's just her being her"
while your eyes say love
and my heart melts all over again
at you being you.

"I don't dance," you said
oh but you do
in so many ways.

I've seen you angry and frustrated,
dead on your feet, bone-weary,
watched you soar, elated,
experienced the joy in your laughter,
held you when you were
heartbroken with grief,
felt your love surround me.

What happens when
two loners pair ...
no need to explain, that's what--
about those needed times
for oneself, alone.
You give me space
I save your place
and in all things us
we still keep the core
of who we were
and are.

Like everyone, we have our irks
Am still waiting  (nine years now!)
for those songs you promised.
Yes I know you're shy
and prefer to sing just in my ear,
not into some recording machine
but do you have any idea
how beautiful your voice is?
Everyone says so.
Can you blame me for trying to
immortalize it?
Why, I could carry it with me
always, when we're apart.

Now, for what reason, that empty milk carton
placed back in the 'fridge?
Is that a guy thing?
You ate like a teenager
when I met you.
"Okay, Miss Kettle, let me remind you ..."
Yes, I know, driftwood from a Vermont beach
doesn't belong behind the curtain
propped up on a windowsill
but this one's shaped like a hawk
he even has a name
and where else but at a window
can he scan the skies?

I know I'm not good with hammers & nails,
the smell of paint makes me ill
and fancy cooking for lots of people
is not my style.
I hate that I suck at math, can't knit afghans,
that I can't ride in an elevator
or airplane
or stand on a 5th floor balcony
without hyperventilating
or nearso.
Is it high weirdness to enjoy shovelling snow,
washing by hand,
running barefoot with dogs.
Then I'm guilty.

But those are such little things.
It's the big things that matter.
Like, do our worldviews match.
Are we on the same wavelength?
Do we respect our respective cans and can'ts?
You cannot swim
if your feet don't touch bottom;
you stand in the water and wave
to me crossing the lake
one happy stroke at a time,
with the fish.
I cannot  speak
in front of a group, even a small one
I stumble over my words,
break out in a cold sweat.
You handle this so much better.
And don't let's even talk
about driving in traffic.
I envy your at-easeness
in any situation.
Applauding the cans,
helping with the cannots
two peas rearranging their pod.

I like that we think alike,
that we can converse without speaking.
We even sometimes gesture simultaneously
move our toes in synch, to the beat of a song,
then notice and break out laughing.
We share a knack for getting lost
and hating crowds
and loving ice cream
and being open
to the strange and

Did I know you in another life?
Was I your child, or you my lover?
Because we seem to have been glued together
from all the ages.
And if so, how is it that
I found you again
and you me.

They have a saying here
Je me sens bien dans ma peau
"I feel well in my skin"
Being well with who you are--
I with me, you with you,
in this particular time and place,
we, with each other.

I love that you're an eternal optimist.
To every problem, every concern:
"Don't worry.  Il s' arrangera".
Whatever it is, it will arrange itself.
But what does that mean? I had asked.
And sure enough,
things always do
arrange themselves.
One way or another,
things get okay again
and one can move on.


Have I told you lately
how much I

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