Thursday, January 27, 2011

città d'amore

January is a slow month for tango.

Maybe it's the seven varieties of frozen precipitation, or perhaps merely the post-holiday backlash blues and a general lack of funds . . .

Either way, I've danced a great deal less since new year. Unless you count the kind of dancing one does to Caravelli (in woolen socks on kitchen floors in Bushwick lofts, a pot of tea or else a skillet full of frugal food abubble on the stove). I say why not.

My mornings have come to smell of gasoline and truck exhaust, or else of deep fried duck, as now I pass the Peking Food Corporation and an auto salvage yard on my commute. My walk to the L is bright, white snow piled against stark, square buildings. It smells cold and the light almost blinds me under this black wool hat I've come to wear as much for Jack as for the warmth (because I like the way he moves it from my eyes).

I reiterate, at the risk of angering the Fates: I have never once been happier than this.

I work mornings, dish and dusting duties eased by NPR. I do yoga. I eat damn near the same Whole Foods salad every day for lunch (with bowl rebate, just under three dollars). I spend the rest of my day writing, with or without Jack, drifting from tea to steaming mug of tea. Evenings I dance. Or else the Ginsberg Group convinces us to join them for a film, projected on the big, white walls in their cold, white common space, sipping real good whiskey from a coffee cup.

We sleep braided together as if the bomb might drop, or the bed might plummet down the chute to the river Styx. His is a nightstand built of books. He talks me through his theories, he reads my drafts. I've worn the same pair of socks for six straight days.

Funny how easily we change. Nothing fundamental lost, just this new geography, the new routine. How soon Miss Lonely Hearts gets used to hearing 'we' without a flinch.

Don't get me wrong, I'm still a barrel full of doubts. This mutually supportive, monogamous thing I've found myself in, with its two-way superhighway of communication—it scares me. But these slow dance moments, this tender—genuine tenderness—has me lit up like a hothouse lily.

New love is a gamble anywhere. It is impossible in New York City. The scenes of your reverie will turn to landmines after the fact, the city a treacherous field of pain for you to navigate alone. But what kind of romantics would we be without the leap? We do not care that certain delis, certain subway platforms, certain bits of park will be off limits when this thing ends in tears.

You might imagine I feel invincible. I'm sorry, I do not. And I do not mean to brag.

If anything, new love is like a terminal disease. But you accept your diagnosis and run naked from the office, ready to lick life from the gutters if you must. It only lasts as long as you let it flap around you like a flock of birds.


Phoenix said...

Girl, kick that carefully crafted cynicism to the curb for once. New love is not a disease; it is a gift. Which is meant to be embraced. Do not worry that your happiness comes across as bragging, that you must condition or quantify your happiness or risk invoking the envious wrath of others. No doom will befall you for celebrating life and love, and you need not be so superstitious.

Love is always, always deserved. As is happiness.

Kathleen said...

Listen to the Phoenix.

Erie Lackawanna said...

Yeah, second what the Phoenix said. You must believe it will last, if only to give hope to those of us who wish we were in love.

Anonymous said...

So beautifully put. Embrace it all and believe it will last because it can and if it doesn't it will still be yours forever. Love is a wonderful thing, wallow in it and then let it be.