Sunday, May 3, 2009
For two weeks, they spent every night together. She had come to visit family, but once she went to see him there was no one else. He was the answer to the question. They each delighted in the other, held hands at dinner, walked arm in arm, kissed each others cheeks and made love with abandon: in the pool, out on the moonlit terrace, in the living room, on the bed, each learning about the other all over again, the memories of years past springing up anew, and the love she kept hidden in her heart for so long overflowing onto him, over them. They hadn't known such joy, such passion for many years, had never felt so treasured. He was all she had remembered him to be and so much more; this was love beyond all measure. They both believed it, felt it a timely gift.
Time to go home. I will call you he promised through tears that ran together like water over smooth stones as good byes were spoken. They would be together, that was understood, a future assured, a love that could not be denied, that had been interrupted by time and distance, only to be rekindled with open hearts.
Daily life resumed, work run, work, think work sleep, work wait. Doubts crept in, along with sorrow and disbelief. Had it happened was it real? Did she feel it did he say it did they mean it?
Phone messages checked room mate questioned, never an inkling that one could be so jealous so spiteful so dishonest to keep the message from her. Sorrow turned to disillusionment, turned to bitterness, turned to acceptance: time followed it's inexorable course.
Many months later, missing him, she called. Just like that, there it was again, but different. The question was asked why did you never call, and then why did you not call me back? Call him back? but that would mean he had called, had called and called, never to get a response. Had thought she wanted no more of him, no more of them. Had moved on with his life, not forgetting her, never forgetting, but moved forward to fill a void. Fearful of growing old alone. Made another commitment with someone else. How could you do that and not have it be with me? she cried, her heart filled with anguish, too late
They talk sometimes weekly sometimes monthly. There have been interludes in the intervening years, just a few passionate encounters where all other aspects of their lives are forgotten and they are just together and that is all that matters. But mostly there are the phone conversations, so sweet and heartbreaking. Both have made lives for themselves. She envies his partner, a lovely woman, his wife, the one who holds the place that should have been hers. She has her own life and a loving man with whom she has built a home filled with love, but it is not him, not them. Their conversations always end the same:
I think of you all the time
me too you,
I love you
I love you,
Maybe in another life maybe in the next life,