… talk …

After she got off the phone, after his terrible confession,
she sat for a while.
Her hands were shaking horribly, as they had been since
he’d begun telling her.
Just by his tone, she had known what was coming, and her
body had begun quaking just a bit, as her mind stood still.

And now she cried.  Of course she did, and for a long time.
The words escaping from her mouth were only for herself
and the sky, but they poured out none the less.
She cried so much she wondered if the sobs would ever leave,
but of course they did.  They washed out with the rain, and
then the journal came out.

Pages of rants, cries, whys, how could hes, how will it evers,
and so forth.  For pages…

Not that she was not experienced at these sorts of things.
On the contrary, she had been married to what had turned
out to be a sex addict, although she was too naiive to know
it at the time.
She thought he was just figuring himself out, in that cute little
sixties way, and she being in the Hippie mode, thought it was
healthy to let him.  She had trusted him implicitly.
They were going to be completely honest with eachother…
Although actually it was the seventies, and not quite as
innocent anymore.
The worst part about it was not the sex with others…
it was the lies and hiding for a month, and then the confessions,
the tears, and then realizing that a month had gone by with
his hiding it and lying, and eventually it just made her mad…
….Mad…as in Crazy.  Eventually All Trust was Destroyed.

Well, at least he told me, she thought….and quickly.
But I’m not there, and I don’t know when I will be, and he’s
way to cute and crazy Not to stray once in a while, even when
I Am there.  That Latin men thing.  Male privilege.

The ole double standards thing, which is one of the two
worst things ever, as far as she was concerned.
The other is being taken for granted.
They sort of go hand in hand, don’t they.

It was 5 or 6 when the phone rang, insistently dragging her
out of her solitary sad, forcing her to clear her throat,
put on the smile voice, and answer.

“Hello…?”

“Well… do you have anything you wanna say to me?”
the Voice came.

“Not really.  I guess that depends on what you have to say to me…”

“I’m not doing too well…. I drank almost a whole bottle” …
…she knew this meant scotch, his favorite imbibement.

“I can’t sleep, I’m not feeling too good about myself,” he continued,
“and I want to apologize.”

“What are you apologizing for?” she ventured, honestly unsure
of where he was at in all of this.

“For breaking our agreement to eachother.  I knew it was wrong
when I was doing it.  It meant nothing.  There is no relationship,
no time spent together, only sex.”

“Does she know about me?” she now wondered, as she really
didn’t know this side of him, nor how he behaved in these times.

“Yes, she knows about you, of course, what do you think?
I’m not a scoundrel.  I’m not going to tremble before you.
I’m not going to sweat…. well….
this is not a video phone, so if I do sweat you won’t know…”

Well…she thought…. he’s doing pretty well so far.  Saying
the right things anyway.  It’s just the trust thing.  The not
knowing what was true, and what would be true, especially
at this distance.  No eyes to peer into.

The conversation closed on a neutral level, he having said
what he needed to say, she unable to move forward, let go,
believe again, but now at least  in a place where she could
see beyond the darkness, the light out there at the end of that
terrible tunnel beginning to grow just a little….

 

———————————

 

 

…the week passes…

After the meltdown over the nameless faceless poem, I go
through days of self doubt, questioning everything,
completely letting go of all sense of control, and begin
once again to face my fears.

I make two lists… pros and cons… and consider the good,
the bad, and the ugly of this relationship I work so hard to
maintain.   Am I trying too hard?
One obvious obstacle is distance.  Our lives are so different,
and that alone makes so much out of sync.
It takes will and determination to stay truly in touch, and on
the same wave length, and it has to come from both sides.

Meanwhile, his reality revolved around a sick and aging Aunt,
who he was feeling very responsible for, and the next time
I called him, he’d had little sleep in four days.
Exhaustion and frustration led him to vent at me for
doubting him…  a bunch of rage came at me.

It seems the poem was something he wrote to Me….
before I ever even Came to Brasil… it was his alter self,
fearing all his feelings would culminate in nothing at all,
with my never showing up, and he would be
left with pain and sorrow.
“You Didn’t Come…”

That was the poem, after all.  And why didn’t he Tell me this?
I have no idea. Was he embarrassed to show his fears?
So I had been allowed to stew away, and for some reason
he had felt the need to test me, I guess…

Not much was really said, and all I could do was to
leave him with…”well…call me when you feel like talking.”

Finally, days later, he left a message at my friend’s saying
“I want to talk with you”, and so once again I called.

“I trust No one,” he tells me.
“I have been alone all my life…
This is the first time in my life that I feel like I could
be with someone that is an Equal.

“I am never away from you…
but then you know, if this thing doesn’t work out,
well, I can get another woman…
…maybe not one of the Caliber of you…
but…I can do that”

He gives, and he takes away…

He was drinking bloody marys, relaxing after the Aunt
had finally gotten better and come home from the hospital.

“I think I’m going to have to bury the bitch” he says…
which means he knows he has to stay and take care of her.
“I just keep seeing my Grandmother cringing.”

His Grandmother had been the one person who loved and
cared for him, and it seems that Aunt Maria and she were….
… Companions.
She had been younger, and the Grandmother and
Grandfather adopted her, and gave her a new life, after
living in complete and utter poverty as a child.

Grandma and she were life companions from there forward,
and I guess Grandpa loved Grandma so much, he went along
with it.  An interesting twist in an already convoluted family…

So when Grandma died, Aunt Maria was just Aunt Maria….
she’d been there many many years, and was part of the family.
She had all of Grandma’s dishes, linens, and kept her altar
with all the sacred icons set up in a closet in her house,
which I was privileged to see.
They still cooked with Grandma’s pots, even though they were
old beat up Aluminum,  scratched and poisoning the food…

She and Alcir had Grandma as this huge and mutual bond
together, and it was the mainstay of their relationship.
The rest of it was quite adversarial, competitive, and
they just loved to argue….constantly.
In some ways, it was as though they were siblings…

They would fight over Grandmas things too…even the
little glass dishes, and the forks that kept going back
and forth between kitchens.

Then he made it clear that he wanted me to come back to Brasil….
but while letting him know I planned to, and soon,
I now had commitments and plans, and also needed to
make money for the next ticket…. he certainly
wasn’t offering to pay for it…

“I’m not a very nice person when I don’t drink,” he complained….
“This is me…. you know this me….
I am still here, but I’m trapped inside this shell of a looser….
I want MYSELF back!”

…and then he added one last touching thing…
“I want to remake myself from what’s inside you!”