(v1 of this piece was in the short anthology, Passive Progressions.)
This was written in September, when my life was more stable because she was not talking to me. Now, it’s a little different. Horray, for Chaos has returned to me once again!
A Romantic: A person with beliefs or attitudes of mystery, excitement, and remoteness from everyday life. ‘This is a beautiful record for hopeless romantics and dreamers – don’t let the cynics tell you otherwise.’ Essentially a reverse cynic or an idealist who’s willing to prove the world wrong in order to achieve his or her dreams.
This summer, my romantic self, the self that stayed up late on school nights watching lovely anime, and read ironic fantasies and speculative science fiction, was reawakened by someone. He is raw and unfocused, passionate and transcendental.
We talked a lot, nearly every night by message. The more I learned about her, the more in love I was. I just want to help with all of her problems, for her the romantic “Me” would conquer the earth! Blackmail the Universe! I learned exactly what all those studies meant when they stated that married men work 30% harder—or more! My creative juices flowed, she was my muse, she was the reason for hundreds of lines.
And now she’s gone, I feel left behind. Where is my love? What happened? She is young and weak, and in need of space. Here my love, take your time. She told me to move on twice or thrice. She said goodbye even more, but came back each time; each time and the last.
September cut my knees, like a certain man, I walk with a limp. My time is running out. The Romantic within me just laughs. “Haha! Is she weak? Then make her strong! Make her a man!” (He means, of course, as a warrior. He likes Jung, and believes that each person has a conscious ego that matches their gender, and an unconscious anima/animus that is the opposite gender.)
But real me? I’m seeing in tragedy. When things are too perfect, something vital is always missing. The chain pops off the bike. The lines rust out my brakes. September cut my knees and then I crashed.
So here I am now. She promised she would come back, but oh so cryptic. I pushed my luck. I have my hope. Oh love, come back!
The Romantic is sizing up all the other potential mates in my life. He wants to get married IMMEDIATELY. I say, people don’t do that anymore. It always goes wrong, and everone wants to wait until they’re middle aged and grumpy before they settle down and find out what makes humans happy.
He does not care. He says “people? Oh you mean ‘they’? They are all weak and worthless. They can go to hell. In fact, their single, lonely asses probably already feel like hell! Do not bother what ‘they’ believe. Look at her! Whew, dark hair blue eyes! And look, that one looks like your dream girl! The blonde curls, well endowed!” I have to blush. I make him stop.
The Romantic is sizing up all the other potentials in my life. I see love with virgin eyes, everyone is beautiful to me. But the Romantic? So judgmental! “I guarantee our lover had an IQ of at least 130. All these dumb women.” They are very pretty though, I say, adding, you don’t even know them that well. “Hah! But tell me, which is more beautiful than the girl I love?” I scan my memory. No one. Maybe one. And, maybe she’s also just as smart. But again, between her and I, as between my love and I, there is a barrier, so for now…
I cherish my memories and try not to feel anxious.
I hope she comes back, but I am not as certain as my Romantic side. How certain is he? “For her, I would blackmail the UNIVERSE!” But as for me…perhaps…she was never meant to be.
“But if she was!” …would she come back?
Hold on to me as tightly as I do you.
“Your wife is the closest person to you in your family.”
“Because she’s the only member that you choose, and she chooses back.”
Tragedy deserves its tragic end!
Dance with me!