Saturday, 20 September 2008

Missing Jo

These last three weeks, he had been avoiding her. 

She had turned up in his writing like a stray pet, uninvited, and had made herself instantly at home. Now he had cast her aside. All his own fault. 

He had got caught up in shaping a story for her, in DOING IT HIS WAY, when he should have just let her get on with this magical life where it happened to meet his, and to let the story unfold. Too much thinking and scheming had taken a destructive bite out of something that had an easy way of it's own making. He had been too impatient to let the story find a way to shape itself into words.

So today, after a third week of standoff, in a gesture that arose from desperately missing her, not knowing what else to do, and being unable to bear it any longer, he talked to a frail vision of her turned back and downcast head. He expected to sound like a madman ranting, but it took him by surprise. His words flowed like a spacious mixture of prayer and confessional. It was a quiet monologue, unemotional, thoughtful, or perhaps heartful - if such a feeling existed - because he was aware that these words didn't arise from his head. 

He told her everything, left nothing out. And when he had finished, when the silence after his words had sat for a longer time than the words themselves had taken to be spoken, he went and sat on the back step and cried. He cried in the sun there, in the solitude of his high walled yard, because he knew that she might be gone when he went back inside again, and that he might have lost her forever.