Remember the first home we shared? The apartment on Washington Avenue?
Two bedrooms, one for sleeping, one for working. A huge central catch-all room with a large bay window. I put the weeping ficus tree in the center of the bay. You didn't like it. You liked the Christmas tree even less. Especially when I left it up until Valentine's Day.
The bay window had extended sills, just perfect for sitting on. I would sit on the far left, left shoulder against the pane, legs stretched out, heels resting on the sill, towards the center. You often found me there, late at night.
What are you thinking?, you would whisper.
Nothing. It's nothing., I would say as I got up from my perch to follow you back to bed.
Remember the wedding? The one you didn't want to go to? It took me weeks of excavation to discover that you were afraid of dancing - of making a fool of yourself. I didn't think it was possible for me to love you more than I did, yet that revelation made my heart burst and leak out of my eyes.
Is that all? I said. You shrugged. I held my hands out to you and you took them. You let me lead you to the center of the room, in front of the tree and the curtainless windows and let me teach you how to dance.
It wasn't dancing so much as a wandering embrace, once you got the fundamentals down. How many nights did we dance in that huge room? Frank and Ella and Rosemary and Billie and Aretha, my friends, our only companions. Your friends were impossible to dance with. As with so much of us, the tao of us, our friends diverged.
And yet you gave me Frost and Kerouac and Poe; I gave you Joyce and Thomas and Yeats.
Sometimes the paths crossed.
I only reach you when we're dancing, you said one night.
And I had nothing to say.
It wasn't a lack of trust, or faith, in you - though we each needed to learn more about both.
Sometimes there are no words.
Sometimes the journey must be solitary.