Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Talking about Ray

I tell her, I’m reading Ray’s biography,
and I’m heartbroken.

Not by the drinking, or the affairs
but that in the end, with Maryann, after everything
they had worked for, just when things were getting better, it fell apart.

It can do that.
Just unravel when you aren’t looking.

She shrugs.

These people, you understand, these dead people
they are my friends, too.

But I don’t think she understands.

After all the horrible little jobs,
and the dreams and the children and the moving
and the parties and the creditors and the bankruptcy

And the drinking, she says.

Yes, the drinking too. Always the drinking
but that isn’t what I am saying.

It’s more than that. To do that much damage to someone you love.
People are careless with love, she says.
But they weren’t, I tell her. They cared too much. Don’t you understand?

She tells me that they couldn’t have really loved each other.

But they did. I know that. They loved too much. They held on
too hard till everything started to explode and burn
and eventually they too would burn. There was no stopping it.

That’s not love, she says. That’s a sickness.

I don’t say anything else.
She’s young.
She doesn’t know that sometimes there is no difference.

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