I Loved You Once in Silence

Star, the number 1 and number 3 surrogate daughters and I went to see the revival of Camelot on Sunday. With us was one of Star’s nieces and the man who broke my heart when I was twenty-one.

The Number 1 and I waited outside the mini-van for him. I was smoking a pink cigarette, and had already put down a quick martini in anticipation of our meeting. Last year we saw each other for the first time in almost 20 years, but the RLA was with me to remind me of who I am and what year it is.

I started by saying to the N1SD “do you remember last year or so, we took you to dinner at the middle eastern place and as we were leaving, you mentioned in passing that you thought perhaps you had been in love?”

She didn’t. I reminded her that she had just broken up with someone and wasn’t sure if her heart was broken too. Oh. Yeah. She remembered now.

“Well,” I replied “it seems certain that you weren’t in love, or you would have known. This man we’re waiting for, he was my first love. Your father would have it that I left him for this guy, but that isn’t the whole truth. This is the man who broke my heart, the one who got away.”

I put out the pink cigarette, and looked up to where he was crossing the street, his grey hair longer and his bald spot larger than last year. He’s wearing a wheat-colored linen suit. I smile and say to her, “Hard to believe, huh?”

But oh, those salad days when we were together. We were the king and queen of cool…at least until he walked into my dorm room, took me by the hand, stared deep into my eyes and said “Hey. When nothing’s there anymore, nothing’s there. What are you going to do?” and walked out.

It was a week before finals. I managed a 4.0 that semester, but I’ll be damned if I can remember anything from that moment to when my parents picked me up to take me home for the summer.

My last semester at school was painful, because I saw him everywhere on campus, and with him the stringy blonde who had taken my place. I graduated. I moved to New York City. And then, a miracle happened. He called me out of the blue to say that he was passing through town and would I like to have dinner with him.

So I did. And he moved in with me and spent the summer before graduate school living in my first apartment with me. We walked to Chinatown. We saw avant garde films projected onto sheets in unmarked galleries in a nascent SoHo. We argued. We loved each other. And then summer ended, and he went on to film school and then we drifted apart.

But always and ever, I wanted him to return. I married the Antichrist praying for a “Graduate” moment, when he would show up and take me away. And I would have gone, gladly. I would have walked away from any and every relationship I was ever in, to go away with Bruce.

Until I married the RLA. And then, like looking into Schroedinger’s box, reality became fixed. There is no longer a shoulda woulda coulda. There is only the RLA, and our life together.

And this life I wouldn’t trade for anything.

Oh, yeah. Camelot. Michael York was wonderful, the woman who played Guinevere was wonderful, the giant who played Lancelot had a beautiful voice. As always, Jenny leaves Arthur for that tool, Lance. I cried, thankful that at last and at least, I know when I’m in the right place.

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 06/19 at 12:04 PM in Maudlin Crap

(1) Comments
#1. Posted by gigi on August 21, 2007

So not maudlin, and definitly not crap.  I’ll trade a ‘Graduate’ moment for the knowledge that at last a joyful reality has replaced the woulda/shoulda/couldas.  It’s nice to be in the right place!

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