Thursday, February 28, 2013

Luco wishes you a belated happy Valentine's Day

I know it is post Valentine's Day. Post-February the 14th. I have missed it! That time of  hearts, cheap candy, and cries of love. Devotion.

And I know I let the day slide by. I did not look any of the animals in this house in the eye - say to them dearest, my heart is in your paw or something else as bland. Instead I slept. Slept and dreampt and then awoke to find Mingus in bed with me.

Mingus, uninvited. Mingus, my cellmate these past eight years.

Strange how quickly and how very slowly eight years have washed over us. A moment ago, here he was mewling in the night: today I am an old feline, bent, stooped. And he hardly any green left.

He is half my size and twice my heart.

And if I were the type to fall and fall in love, it would be into him that I would tumble.

See you his spotted paws? His vulpine ears?

And when he dreams he moves his body, inching closer or further away from me. His whiskers tremble with slightest sigh.

I did not ask him to be my Valentine. I have never asked anyone to my Valentine be.

And if I did, what would he say? Would he scoff, tossing golden fur in disdain? I imagine every bone in my body disintegrating at the sound.

Maybe I would say - my heart
                                          is a kind of poison            tonight
it is overfull
                                  and  you     an antidote

His laughter would be so resounding as to wake every sleeping bird, every nestling thing starting up, reaching for mother, craning neck to hide - small, small - and I a ghost, then, disappeared, then.

Perhaps he would be angry at my audacity. Angry that after eight years, eight years, I am now sidling up to him, searching his eyes for warmth. He might have loved me once and forgotten. He might have loved me once and grown to hate me. He might have loved me once, before I became who I have become.

And who am I? That which encompasses everything and which is itself nothing - that which is of the air - that which cannot be named and yet we name - the same as you and as you and as you and as you.

And happy Valentine's Day to us all, yes? To us all searching and not finding, or searching and then finding and then losing, or searching, and having searched, grown tired - to all of us buried beneath the rubble of ridiculous expectations. To the tyranny of desire. To knowing better and not caring. To never knowing better and not wanting to learn.

To all of us awake in the middle of the night, startled by Mingus' laughter which permeates our dreams.

And yet he lies here, with me, and I lie silent, lying to myself, playing word games in my stupid head, imagining my tongue on his ear. My body covering his.

And doing nothing. Nothing.

Happy belated Valentine's Day. I could not bring myself to post this before. I could not bring myself to face these feelings.

And facing them has taught me this.

Luco is to craven as Mingus is to kiss.

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