Riptides of the Mirroring Sea

A seaside hotel

The view from the balcony a panorama of bared cliffs

Emotionally adrift, mascara-streaked eyes

Stare out at the motionless, muted sea

 

A couple, signed onto coming undone,

Reluctantly co-habitating the same bed

Backs turned as far away from each other

Spending the least possible amount of time together

 

How to reconnect when truth can hardly be expressed

When instead it gets bottled up, swallowed, dismissed

Buried under drugs and drinks

The past forcefully made to forget

 

Viscous are the hands that deal time

And all they manage to grant

Is a semblance of tolerated presence

 

The peep hole holds a wish

Offers 'un apercu' of a life that's veered away

A furtive escapade to a playful past

An aperture that enchants possibility

Away from omissions, from arrested feelings

An ocular space alleviating hard-to-contain pain

A sedated sensation - not entirely dormant

 

The days breed immobility and unwritten words

The sun relentlessly bleaches stranded rock

The lone fisherman fares out to sea

Out of habit, beholden to gravitational force,

Willingly following the outgoing tide

 

Vibrant lovemaking behind suggestive walls

Attracts inflated middle-aged malaise

Artistic dreams that have been laid to rest

Placed on pressing hold while

A lip stick type writer faces beautiful void

 

The inertia is accumulating - insupportable

The wait is on - for someone to lose their marbles

For the long-feared shoe to drop

While a secret keeps inflaming embittered thoughts

Beleaguering embattled words

 

A revelation is never as gutting to the audience

As it is to the protagonists

What's life-changing for one couple

Controversial and difficult inside a particular time period

Leaves others cold and unimpressed

The climax seems to fall flat

Every tragedy is intimately crushing

And the endlessly winding ways to work through suffering

Never easily attained nor seamlessly attached

 

She accuses him of desiring the nubile form

The newlywed across the wall -

Whose anatomy can sustain life

She however - a marital failure, a faulty female apparatus

Denied maturation of shared DNA

And yet, didn't she portray entire lives on stage?

 

The mirror image splinters as she twirls, shaking loose what

Can’t be changed and will return when motionless

It will not let her be

Meanwhile

He watches her, misses her, wants her still

Fitfully tries to win her back

The peep hole a surreptitious seduction, a vicarious sexual act

 

He wants the scarred woman - not the vivacious maiden

Not their sunken past, not a melancholy memory

He sees her - knows her flaws, doesn't whitewash her being

To himself or the bar owner down by the shore

 

"We have to stop being assholes"

 

He begs her to see him - to feel his sincerity

So she may know he loves her still - despite the unnameable

She doesn't know who she is anymore:

"I am a good person. Am I a good person?"

 

We sometimes commit acts

That carry the force of collateral damage

We sometimes don't care what may follow

The pain's become so vivid

All that counts, that matters is how to alleviate it - in that moment

 

The dam of built-up sorrows breaks when light is shone

On the unspeakable

The shadows reveal the ponderously diaphanous

Daylight penetrates with greater ease, the view changes

It is prolonged silence that feeds the demon of doubt

It clouds our sensibilities and adds fuel to judgment

 

I - while watching each restrained scene -

Wonder whether my decision to hang on

Is a barren wish for fear to retreat

For patience to fertilize feelings

I think the arisen melancholy stems from not having

A significant count of Togetherness under my belt

She is an alternate me, a possibly lived out life

A marriage of 14 years, tried to the brink

Pain-filled, shattering, desintegrating, possibly without repair

But they endure - they both -  stubbornly endure

 

I don't know what barren means to a woman

Not personally, not viscerally

I've been fertile when I needn't be

So I can't know the desolation that comes

When babies are lost and no healthy ones

Grow in their wake

 

However I do know a dearth of feelings

When year after year the possibility of meeting someone

Seems to become more and more remote

When it feels as if prospects are drying up -

And my eyes become more downcast

My hope more timid, my daring more deflated

The view from the inside out something akin to barren

 

I thought of you while watching the film

I couldn't help it - I guess I felt the continued wait

Weighing on me - the wonderment keeping me curious

How beautiful it would be for someone to continue loving me

Even if little remained to be salvaged

For someone to hang on when nearly all going stops

No matter how arduous the climb out of love's ditch

I dreamt of a blonde male Supermodel

Kissing me deeply in a car to somewhere

I felt his tongue determinedly seeking mine

Melting into my mouth, finding a playful flow

The longing stopped

And we, entirely oblivious and carefree about

Where we might end up

 

Loneliness is real and sometimes it can be worse

With someone you've come to hate and despise

When communication has broken down

When distractions take on a stand in role

When attempts are misguided, forceful, desperate

When a touch provokes recoiling sensations

It's never a walk in the park to be denied

To feel something and the feeling not being replied

What's worse though is when love and desire are there

When admiration hides out in plain sight

When something else holds feelings hostage

A fear of being exposed, a fear of showing up

Maybe -

That leads to rushing the other way

Hugging pills and bottles instead

The glimmer of hope is a peep hole

On the other side of which a life lies

Where words and caresses become real again

When lying together, limbs enlaced, is something

Each party relishes in

 

The sheer beauty of being seen

By someone you love

Someone you can't shake

No matter the anger, the fear, the alcohol

No matter the desolate walks taken

The raging spirit along descending steps

Someone who insists on sleeping next to you

Even if touch has momentarily ceased

 

The sea has you and all I've been given is a peep hole

Which leaves me wondering whether there is something else

Left for me to say or do

Am I the fisherman sitting alone in a boat

Am I to let things be, let the outgoing tide decide all

For sometimes that's all we can do

Letting the natural tide decide

What will become of our lives...