What he felt about me

He answered.

Valued. Understood.

When I asked him what he felt about me.

He said so many tiny things I somehow made bigger. If I were to lay these little words out now you’d no doubt see – sooner than me – how little he ever saw of me. See how I clung for years to an autobiography, let him write his narcissistic stories all over me.

I believed myself to be the shore for this man, his brink, his haven.

Brave. Free.

But this is not what he felt about me.

I’ve been looking for answers the wrong way around it seems. Wondering what I could have should have did not could not-

Stop! See!

The truth outs eventually: For years I loved a hollow man. One who wounds with silence and dishonesty.

This was never, ever about me.

RockyShore

Wisdom is hard won. Clarity often requires you search and search and search that rocky shore. You crawl on your hands and knees to find what they buried so deep. Knowledge painfully extracted from the chest.

♥♦ The treasure always, darling, is you ♥♦

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Left behind

Gone now. An empty room I travel through, seeing what used to be there, the ghost tables and photographs, the thread chairs disappearing. What to decorate, what to add to this emptiness? But first the walking, barefoot, the reaching and touching of things that used to be here. Feeling the fade, feeling the ending, the going away as something active, present.

Drawing our names in the dust, tracing the sadness with my fingertips. Only webs and dangling threads left now, all the finished, unfinished remains.

In this room. This small room, this small house we made, this small life we lived in small moments with big, deep breaths. Empty now. Gone.

What to do with all this space? You should know I’ve found someone to fill it up, to reach into corners, open the blinds. Someone to dance me across this bare, dusty floor. But they’re not you. You should know.

He’s not you.

I once said there’s a part of me that only you-

It wasn’t only you I left behind.

 

 

All this time (5)

8.17 PM

It’s not as if she hadn’t considered this. If she’s honest with herself, and there really isn’t any point in lying now, not with his chest pressed against her back, and his hand resting against her hipbone. She’s staring at the wall, staring at the particular hotelness of this room. The textured wallpaper, the brass and amber light fittings. The heavy drapes and the mirror large enough to watch – what? All that they have just done? How many lovers has that mirror reflected? How many twisted limbs, how many mouths searching, fingers grasping?

His fingers are now playing at her hipbone like she is a piano, she remembers – had forgotten – this habit of his. The way his hands are never still, not when they are touching her.

A rooftop bar. A hotel bed. She could blame the fifth drink, or the way they moved downstairs to drink it, to the booth where their legs touched under the table, and how neither moved away from the heat. She could blame the stories that went deeper. I missed you when-. I wanted to tell you that-. Maybe it was the dress she wore, or their unfinished business, or the stars and the gods interfering.

What it definitely is, Elliott thinks, fingers tapping at bone, is crazy. Three years no contact, and then only hours to bring them back to this.

She is happy for the first time in three years. Terrified too, because she knows what he hasn’t said, and so now she turns to face him.

Ash? Heart in throat, removing his hand from her hip. Lacing fingers together.

Perhaps she heard the stories wrong.

Did you set a date yet?

A pause, too small for the question.

Yeah. August 15th. The earliest we could get the church we wanted.

He doesn’t look at her as she pulls her hand away. Does not see her counting down, or the decision she makes. August 15th. Calendars and clocks. Anything could happen by then.

~ Elliott,  What We Have Left

#

All this time – the end is now the beginning … have finally figured out a way to use this in my new story. Her story …

This is where we left them: https://bodyremember.com/2015/06/01/all-this-time-4/

Without my permission

Wednesday April 17th, 2013

Today is my last day. Of what? Of being alive? Of being in this world? Not exactly, because I’m here still, in a way. I can see everything and feel everything, although I’ve been trying to get that right, because it’s not exactly feeling, is it? It’s not the same as wrapping your fingers around a warm coffee mug, or flipping the pillow to the cold side, of finding the cool relief on your cheek, before you go back to sleep. It’s not that. It’s not immediate and ephemeral and lost to the next sensation just as you start to feel the first.

It’s something more complete. Something less connected to space and time. A kind of knowing, more than feeling. Sort of how you can swim under water and through it and across its surface all at the same time. Immersed. Perhaps that’s a better word for the way I experience the world now.

I’m here still, in a way. I am immersed.

At any rate, we’ve reached that date. We’ve come to today. I want to tell you about it, because they keep getting it wrong. The way people always get it wrong when they speak for you. When they tell your story.

My story, the one I lived.

Today is my last day. Today is the last day I lived my story. The last day I lived. There was an I, and it was me, and I was at the centre of my story, until someone else decided to take over. Until that man wrote my last pages. Without my permission.

You think you are the centre, that if you hold on tight enough, even when things try to pull you away, you’ll make it. But then someone enters the space you have created for yourself, they take up all the room, and suddenly you’re pushed right out of your skin.

It’s their story now.

There was an I, and now there is a he, a him, a his.

Today is my last day, Elliot. The last day of my story.

~ Alice, Into the After

On the Rocks

Somewhere else

It begins with a small impatience.

Something about the light. Or the way it has been warm for three days straight. The consistency of it. The knowing.

So it flutters. A quickening under the skin, beginning. The desire for something more. For something less, perhaps. No matter, as long as it isn’t the same. As long as it’s different to this.

Here.

Her mother says she has gypsy blood. Something garnet red and restless, warming her veins. Like the sun setting on her horizon, or the rising of it somewhere else.

There.

There. Here.

There is no place (she’s home).

Anais Nin Restless

All this time (4)

5.24 PM

I’m finishing my third wine; I tilt the glass at you each time I make a point, flirting over my nervousness, drinking it away. Twice now, we have touched. Fingers taping on arm to emphasise, a gentle shoulder push at something controversial. Easy, inconsequential, like the little stories we are trading. It feels good. Natural. But I am nervous all the same. There is more than distance between us, after-all.

Two years. I cannot decide if it is a lifetime, or yesterday. I built up those days, used every single minute and hour to create distance between us. One day placed on top of another until I had a fortress of time to hide behind. It was the only way I knew to do it.

You must do the thing you think you cannot do.

Leaving you.

It was like losing the sun. I spent weeks, months, fumbling through the dark of your absence, jumping at shadows, and sleeping with my eyes wide open. Barricade building, until I could no longer remember the glow, how we used to power this city.

Until, enough days had passed, and a whole new life grew up out of the dark.

Some of it I share with you now. I want to tell you, dance my life in front of you, show the accumulation of these two years. But there are also parts I want to protect, things you don’t deserve to hear. You are carefully choosing your own sharing tonight. There is nothing unusual in that, but you have not thought of what I already know, of the ways you still come up from time to time.

I am now fully aware of what you won’t say.

A lot has changed.

Do you say it? Do I say it? Is it a bitter offering, or lament? Your hand goes to my knee, and suddenly I am blazing. Suddenly, nothing has changed at all.

#

Eidyia’s note: Two former lovers meeting again after years apart. What changes? What doesn’t? Does time really heal everything, or do we merely learn to pause certain feelings, certain desires – and it’s all just there, waiting. Does what we resist, only persist?

All this time – a little writing exercise to see …

Part 1: https://bodyremember.com/2014/11/22/all-this-time-1/

Part 2: https://bodyremember.com/2014/11/24/all-this-time-2/

Part 3: https://bodyremember.com/2014/11/29/all-this-time-3/

All I see

I am wrapped in something silver. Shivering. They keep calling me m’am, and they take turns with their questions, pressing gently against my confusion. I am trying to concentrate, trying to swim up through my saturation, but my eyes keep going to their belts, their thick black weapons like anchors, and how I could just reach over now and pull one free, grasp one of the guns and point.

At what? At who? What am I most afraid of, here?

I close my eyes and a baton comes down against my skull, smashes through skin and bone, breaks me apart. I see blood. Exploding. But it’s just the sirens flashing, and the trail of red from her open mouth, and nobody is moving but me.

Everything is spinning in the wrong direction. And she is perfectly still. Wrapped tight like me, but I cannot see what they have used to cover her. Have they straightened her limbs? Have they pushed her hair from her face, and gently closed her legs?

And again, the startling flash of exposed skin, the deep purple of her thighs, the finger bruises, spreading. A map drawn behind my eyes. And now it’s all I see.

I think I am going to be sick.

The officers are staring; my hand has gone to my mouth. There is metal on my tongue, and it tastes like a gun, the cool, hard of a barrel pushed against my face. Like a fist.

I double over and throw up on the gravel.

M’am. Are you okay, m’am? Can we get you some water, m’am?

And the questions stop as someone pats my shoulder, the female officer I think, though her face is blank as she turns away.

Did you notice anything just before you stopped? Did you see anyone strange in the area? Did anything seem out of place?

That’s what they kept asking me. And I said no, yes, um – a useless trail of words because I saw nothing. There was nothing. There was just rain closing in, and the river churning, and the place I stopped to breathe.

Where she was. Where I found her. I had never seen a dead body before. Never seen the impossible stillness, the quiet of it.

What’s going to happen to her?

My question now. Unanswered as I shiver in my silver wrap, and another siren keens its way toward us.

~ Elliott, Into The After

Riverside Park

Inspired by my run today. I think I’ve found my place and time.