I just want to roll out of here. One more time Lord, just let me roll out of here and put this all behind me like the rest of it. Back there somewhere, a place that does not even exist, except in my imperfect Mind. The Past. My only wish is that it was Wednesday night, and I am no longer needed around here anymore. Strange, to have been necessary for a time. What a feeling. For a little while, I actually believed it. Ha, ha! Me! You know I don’t really believe in anything. It’s all a lie, a sham, a show, an illusion, make-believe, a sad clown-happy clown show, a cosmic-dance of some kind, more meaningless than Faulkner, funnier than Marquez, if you can dig it. If you can laugh under torture.

I can't imagine what it's like being her. Everybody wants a piece of her heart, I bet. She must have had a thousand applications and supplications by now. I can't imagine all the men and women she has disappointed. She can't have loved them all. I bet some went mad. Excruciating, to be spurned by such a one. Does she feel a responsibility after awhile; all the pained and disillusioned faces, the incomplete passes, fumbles, lame lines, and spoiled hopes? Compassion for these? I think that she must feel some, or she wouldn't have the blessing of beauty. But how can I know? I don’t possess those kind of gifts. I’m not beautiful. Oh hell yes I am only nobody can see it but me!

But, what is that X about, in the green grass below the low-hanging lucky skirt? Does it mean "Off Limits," or does it mean, “Lady’s Choice?" I don't know what it means, or if it was completely inadvertent, that X; maybe she didn't even know the verboten sign was there. I don't care. I still want to lift the hem. Who wouldn't? What, am I supposed to be ashamed of that or something?

I never saw or experienced it before. It flummoxed me. It floored me. It knocked me on my ass. A totally graceful economy of movement a kind mind perfect face and body and a smile to shame the harvest moon, so inadequate to describe in words, so impossible to convey the depth of feeling it provoked. I never can't forget it. It knocked me down. It nearly knocked me out. But so what! Everything ends under a pile of dirt.

I thought I was a connoisseur of women. (SURE I AM!) I looked at a million of them--but I never saw one like this. Now I understand what it means to be "a slave of love." I can be enslaved with hugs, honesty, for-realness, and self-delusion without even trying. I guess that defines the breadth of my impossible need.

As I said somewhere, all I want to see anymore is the beauty I been missing. I haven't much hope for it, but I don’t want to see anything else. Don’t tell me about it, even. I’ve had enough of ugliness and reading about torture. I’ve had enough of the crime, the crazed fundamentalists, the heedless liberals, the stupid governments, and their fucking wars. I want it out of my mind, or I want off the planet.

She’s the one who did it for me. She is the only one who ever did. She made me feel so good. Even a casual e-mail from her makes me crazy. How do you do that almost all the time, and how do I deal with this intensity of feeling? I want to learn the trick. She must have an old soul to deserve so much. She's like my Coumadin, a tricky and dangerous medicine that can save or kill me with the wrong dosage. But I'm not so much a fool; I know we will never see those butterflies. There won’t be any long revealing talk in a cafĂ©. Nobody who matters or is talented-enough to make something of it will ever know where I’m coming from. I was going to show her what no one else has seen of me. But what does it matter anyway? Who am I? One day sooner than he was I will be as forgotten as George Washington Lee, my grandfather.

It’s no good, feeling good. I only want more of it. More of something else I can’t have. Just another thing on the “Can’t Have” list. Off-Limits. No Trespassing. Stay Out. Posted. Private Property. X. No cuntry for old men.


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