To get to this

“Cause you and I both loved
What you and I spoke of
And others just read of
Others only read of the love, the love that I love.” 

The economic beauty of a song lyric. The last line of a poem. The way it hits – da-DUM! – that heart thud reveal. It’s why we write a thousand lines. To get to this. To you. Sifted letters, finger trickles, and pounded keys – this constant turning over words. Just to get to this. To you.

And I …

You and I.

Not so little you and I, anymore.

A stranger said hey, what’s it about –  but you looked like a shot was fired. A gun powder flash across the face. My bullet lodged. Da-DUM!

I wrote a book.

And I never got now I get to thank you.

“Cause you and I both loved what you and I spoke of
and others just read of, and if you could see me now
well then I’m almost finally out of 
I’m finally out of, finally …
well I’m almost finally, finally, out of words.”

~ Jason Mraz

The Memory of Stars by Jacqueline Bublitz

(What I was writing exactly a year ago today. Finishing. And starting all over again)

When I am here

From: Maggie Valentine <mvalentine@gmail.com>

Subject: You

Date: 27 March 2010 00:46:00 AM AEDT

To: mackben@gmail.com

_________________________________________________________________________________________________

You pulsate through even the question of what to have for dinner.

You are trapped deep in my nerve, Mack. You have spread under the surface of my skin like a bruise. You are the slick sliding down my neural pathways. The snap and lock and spark that causes the lights to blow when I flick a switch.

You are the click of my land mines before they explode. The flavour I taste when my mouth is empty. You are the moment before I come, all taut and jangled nerve, more acute and curious than the consummation.

You are my own teeth on lip, the ache of my breast. You are the inexplicable detachment of mind to body, so that my head is there when I am here.

You are the memory of muscle, the quickening of my blood. You are the juice that flows through me and makes me wet when I have not even noticed the weather.

You who loses no sleep over me, who turns to another and makes your bed every morning (and the nights I cannot bear to think of).

You, who cannot know how far and completely I have fallen.

M (Your Valentine)

Rock Bublitz at body, remember by Joanne Piechota

Image by Joanne Piechota

 

Into the After

Sometimes, I time travel through their wounds.

I take them back to before. Before the wheels over-corrected, or the under-tow pulled too hard. I take them back to the moment before they said yes to that guy or before they turned that corner – before life began to slide away from where they’d been.

I’m piecing them back to how they were, when they were whole and untouched. Everyone has it. Every body has it. A time before. Some people get further along than others – some get to live entire lives in the before.

Others come with the smallest amount of time and grace, and fall quickly into the after.

#

Into the after. The new working title for my second novel. To write, I need a literary leitmotif, a melody of words and ideas to thread through the story. I’ve found it here. Now the work begins …

And when only longing remained

But the girl continued to love the man.

The love had snaked its way into her bones, and anchored in the deepest part of her. She missed him, and began to forget the sharper edges of their relationship.

She remembered instead the way he had touched her wrist on that very first night. She remembered his worried eyes, and the soft pad of his thumb against her bottom lip. She remembered him singing in her ear, and the rough of his neck, and the tremble in his throat when she undid his tie.

She began to polish the grooves out of these memories, until soon, only shiny surfaces remained.

She slipped these better moments into her pocket, and she took them out at night in the dark. She started to hold on to every last night, and let go of every next morning, and soon her loneliness recalibrated into longing.

And when only longing remained, she took these memories out of her pocket, and laid each one before him.

It was a gesture both hesitant, and hopeful.

It turns out the man had been waiting for the girl this whole time. He welcomed her return, and held out his hand, and when she took it, both were full of forgetting.

- Maggie Valentine, The Memory of Stars

Joanne Piechota image at body, remember