Who Concedes the Need?

December 18, 2012 § Leave a comment

How does a man have self-esteem when he’s barely allowed to admit that his body contains testerone? “Vanity” and “positive self-image” have been assigned as the male and female definitions of the same thing. Woman, though, musn’t admit a desire or need for man. So, everyone’s alone: the man tired of rejection and the woman who won’t relinquish the first-right to reject. He’s gone from being what he thinks she wants to what he knows he is, but still hopes it’s what she wants. (The faith weakens, but it never dies.) He stops pursuing and waits for her to stop waiting for him. So, they’re both alone. Who’s wait is more significant? Less impatient? Who concedes the need?

Until I Forget

December 14, 2012 § 5 Comments

With time and reflection, Herself grows ordinary. If she is still fascinating, she no longer fascinates. If she is still attractive, she no longer attracts. What she hides—what I wanted from her—she can keep. Once the challenge I set myself, she’s now only the futility. In love, what isn’t given isn’t true. Pursuit is a lie. She is a lie too long denied. What does that make me? The recovering liar? With her ordinariness grows louder the lament over wasted…just about everything. But what use, the keening? Ordinary strips from her the emotion I’d given her, takes back what was mine, the gift not accepted—and rightfully. I became the man she’d thought I was. I wanted her to be wrong, but I could only prove her right. Behind and ahead, I see clearly. It’s right in front of my face I can’t make out. Of the past I see that at best I held no interest to her; and at worst, following a disdain I did not respect, aversion. Of the future, which is near enough, I see a life as separate from hers as hers has always been from mine, and I won’t care. Of now, I cannot quite accept either vision. As always, knowing is not being, not until I forget what I know.

Stale Cake/Fresh Bread

December 7, 2012 § 1 Comment

The man I am, somewhere in me, is the man I was taught by feminism to be ashamed of, yet the same man the same people tell me I have to be to attract them. How can I be anything at all and expect to get what I need? How can what I am measure up to an ideal? Cinderella will starve for want of cake. The man who is expected to do all the pursuing is the person upon whom all of the rejection is heaped and whose emotional skin is thickened to deadness. That’s what control gets you: a dispirited simulacrum of your ideal; a stale, tasteless cake. Is that still to be coveted over fresh bread?

Better the Comforts I Know

July 28, 2012 § Leave a comment

Comfort is escape, but from what? At what point is it a denial of responsibility? What is the responsibility? It weighs heavily but has a big thumb on the scale. Comfort does not signify contentment of a real kind, but a buffer from the pain of coping with without. I look for comfort in myriad things, but in none do I truly find it, for futility ever leads the pursuit. The horse is dead in the gate. Contentment is not an accumulation of comforts. No number of good books I read, good movies I see, or amount of music I enjoy totals what I am after. In fact, I sometimes think that their absence will reveal the peace I seek, but I fear the void. It’s a theory I can’t bring myself to test. Better the comforts I know….

What It Is I Should Be Seeking

June 5, 2012 § 4 Comments

What am I anymore? What’s left of me once I roll my sleeve up over my heart? I don’t want to be this guy, some kind of crusader for love. I can’t buy what I’m selling. Am I a fake? Everyone, to some extent, “makes do,” settles. Gives up–or is it “comes to his senses”? Is love a childish thing to hope for? to be given up as unbefitting an adult? or do we simply redefine it to fit our lowered standards? My standards have risen, but I’ve been wrong to pursue it. The real pursuit is of something bigger and broader into which my standard of love fits. Love is a reward of the true pursuit, not the quarry itself. I am a seeker, but I’m not sure what it is I should be seeking.

Walking in Circles and Never Laying Down

May 22, 2012 § 2 Comments

If I can’t tear myself out of this caul of hope when I leave the apartment for entertainment, then there really is nothing for me to do. Nothing’s changed within that equation since The Trainwreck. Desperation to replace her becomes the reason to crawl Carytown, so I stop going. It always comes to that. Then I go stir crazy waiting for something to happen, desperation building as much on the need to get away from the memories of her as on the need to find something positive to hang my heart on. Pursue, retire, repeat. If I didn’t pursue I wouldn’t tire. Inertia doesn’t sit well with me, as too much time with myself can be too much time spent licking old wounds. Then I try to get away from them into the city. The cycle travels around the stillpoint, and I can’t break from the centrifugal force to spiral into it, caught up in the wrong pursuit, or in pursuit of pursuit itself–the dog walking in circles and never laying down.

Pursuit Cannot Fulfill It

February 7, 2012 § Leave a comment

This fascination I claimed to have for Herself is hard to define. Was it nothing more than another rationalization of love propping up my declaration of love? a shingle on the roof of the house of cards? a thread in this emperor’s new clothes? What fascinated me was what I didn’t know about her, a creation of my inference from what I did know. Is she the sad, dark vision I created in my mind? Answering that is not the concern it used to be. It comes down to being none of my business–that is, accepting it as such. I believe she is very much the person I imagined, but the desire to confirm it is no match for the reality of the impossibility. Allowing this reality to assert its rightful governance has gone far in taming, if not eliminating, the hope of ever knowing who she really is. The hope is still a fond one, but a patient one, too, now (though no more realistic). Pursuit cannot fulfill it.

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