Divorce, Single Parenting, Dating, Sex, & Self-Recovery

Posts tagged “love letters

she could not be caught (a poem)

girl in paris

girl in paris

just as i remembered her
on the gay streets of paris
i was 19
she was 22
and spoke no english
we managed
in the morning
the eiffel tower visible
through the small steamy window
i had arrived
or
fulfilled a fantasy
and until this photograph emerged
from an old envelope of black and whites
she was no longer an obsession
yet the fires flared immediately
as if i was still a young man
she could not be caught
she said
men had tried
i was different
but wouldn’t slow her down for a second
of course
she was right
the next night
she didn’t show
even though i told her i was leaving
heading off to spain
and on to oxford
for my summer program
stratford and all that
the other photo of her
melted into dust in my wallet
after a few hot months
the next summer

1-17-22


she is aspiration (a poem)

she is

she is

she is stronger than i know
more beautiful than i’ve had a chance to discover
reaching for her lover
with grace and a smile
to light 1,001 nights
beyond where i’ve ever been
and she knows
i am beside her
every step of the way
even as the course corrections may be numerous
this flight plan
is one we’ve both been drawing on our own
praying for a copilot
for the heavy weather
as well as ice cream sundaes
rainbow fkn unicorns
we are
she is

1-1-22


winter berry (a poem)

winter berry (a poem)

winter berry (a poem)

cold races in
whispers your absence
bed empty and disheveled
pillow tightly held
a wet winter day
beckoning to me
retreat
relapse
rest
release

12-29-21


her cherry christmas kisses (a poem)

liz phair christmas

liz phair christmas

is it okay to lust after rockgrrls
who sling strats
songs of younger men
extraordinary women
with everything
i
desire

i
am
on a path
towards
open tunings
chord voicings
and
her cherry christmas
kisses

12-15-21


open window (a poem)

the open window

the open window

there was a moment
as she turned away
breeze was billowing
with an afternoon coolness
the bedsheets felt rough
our attempt missed
i returned to the window
looking down
at the frigid mediterranean sea
crashing on the rocks below
all night
the window called us
to swim
or jump
or leave
just get up
get out of this horror
that should’ve been a honeymoon
but was something else
a dying gasp
and non-refundable tickets
to some paradise
we had spoken of many times
while i was still hopeful

12-14-21


for the trees (a poem)

forest for the trees

forest for the trees

there was the forest
and the trees
her
and me
the road ahead looked cold
strait
narrow
tightly controlled
and her lack of smile
said all i needed to know
she was the one leaving
not arriving
she needed me to know
why

i smiled
she didn’t expect that
it was her idea
this breakup
she was telling me why
i was pleasantly surprised
by her reasoning
the objections were quite sound
as she droned on
about what wasn’t working
what she needed
how i was the issue
not us
me

that might have been the problem right there
this amazingly beautiful woman
giving me the letdown
to go down in history
was not responsible
for her own meltdowns
somehow i was not playing
by the rules
as she understood them

just a few days before
in the middle of a crisis
she took off all of her clothes
and cried
i sat nearby on the bed
consoled as best i could
but the issue was not apparent
her sadness
from some distant pain
overwhelmed her thin white body
pale in the romantic lighting
the song
do you realize
seemed to be in some reloop
or perhaps it was time that was looping

i am not sure what to do here i said
but i can be here with you
beside you
i can hold you
she seemed more confused
additional tears poured
this appears to be something a bit bigger
than our erotic liaison gone amiss
i can leave if you’d rather be alone

a bit later
the conversation moved towards
a curious exploration
between us
she was still undressed
and looking as delightful as ever
it’s like your naked fairy dust isn’t working
i said
she stopped cold
what?
it’s as if your hot body would solve any issues
without any work
we’d just blow over the upset
and blow on each other
to quell the glaring heat
of something unpleasant
fill the void
with the passion
see if that gives us/you
some relief

that’s not me
that’s not what happened
i waited to find her again
but she had retreated
again
into an angry silence
she put her pajamas on
i kissed her forehead
and left

maybe that’s the answer
to my ease
as i see it
as she will never see it
as beautiful as she is
smart
happy
and
broken

11-29-21


morning, back to bed (a poem)

back to bed

back to bed

if the coffee tastes
as bad as i feel
maybe it is more rest
or better dreams
that i need

today

11-19-21


and there she was… (a poem)

and there she was

i keep wanting to start every story
every poem
with “and there she was”
but it has become cliché

and yet
these legs
expanding out below me
on my phone IG account
and i don’t see it at first
but as i enlarge
and look closely
it is me
in the background
clearly holding my macbook air
in one hand
as i whip up migas
on the fancy-ass gas stove
at my sister’s cottage
in the lakes outside of new york

it is warm outside
but the fall is coming
and i am arriving at love
with this amazing woman
it seems like we have just met
casually, randomly
by chance and circumstance
of this webby woven world
of gadgets
online dating profiles
kisses with strangers
promises never fulfilled
by the right swipe

i miss you
her
anyone

at this moment
i find my aloneness
almost unbearable
on the first cold night
in furry slippers
and sipping
my bubbly water
wishing i had more information to go on
the photo is beautiful
but there is no contact info
no touching
only my imaginative
lyrical typing
like an idiot
poking the cold plasticized aluminum
into tiny stokes
black on my white screen
clickity
all alone
clackity
on a night
when almost anyone would do
a cat perhaps
an Asian massage therapist
no
not that
just alone
me

staring at my phone

and there she was…

11-18-21


i am a room full of chairs (a poem)

in this place

in this place

and in this place
there are many comfy spots
for reading
kissing
writing

but no place for
cats
bad attitudes
enemies

i have graduated
to independence
from negativity
shame
anger
longing
unrest

out here we is stoned
immaculate
breathing with ease
holding nothing
embracing everything
even the hard stuff
loss
weight
as a gift

letting go of her
was the easiest thing

11-09-21


not yet here (a poem)

i’ve moved to another planet
away and out
in
over
my head
for this moment
silent in contemplation of my love
my life
my path forward

nothing is certain
futures are for fortune tellers
not for poets and singers
as i lean into the new curves
of country roads
that high beams don’t pierce
as gravel spits up beneath my wheels
i cannot slow to the speed limit
as i press into the seat
against my fear
against the door
pressures of this new flight path

my co-pilot is still missing in action
awaiting the all-clear
listening for some true calling
some push out of the pause
and into a freefall of desire
and winter fires
under heavy blankets
seeking a home within a home
this is my beginning
this is an ending of a long journey
an arrival
a heartbreaking moment of joy
and ghosts

no moment is more important than the next
and my heart is aching for the fine edge
the razor of desire
has wreaked loss
abandonment
hopelessness
and dark nights of the soul
winding down to the dead-end street
of this love
restless and ready
and
still
beside someone
arriving
not yet here

10-19-21


limitless (a poem)

an opening is becoming
moments together
that bring limitless joy
both thrilling and comforting
and a breath in each other’s arms
is a lifetime of what has been missing
all this time
all these days and nights
of seeking and resetting expectations
become stillness
a point in time
with you
is

10-16-21


mvd2.0

off-hearttree

[from strange horizons poems]

something about your heart doesn’t make sense
a desire beyond all desires
a part of your soul you don’t understand
but are drawn to
the thrill, the chase, the capture,
the loss, the love, the sadness
it’s all in there at the beginning
and if you spot the one you’re looking for
no amount of distress or baggage
will keep you from
giving it your best shot
communicating freely
loving wildly
being reckless
bold

don’t hold back when the winds of love arrive
the storm approaches and you can lean in
or run with the dust and rain

ours is the way of brave things
kisses like arrows of fate and joy and excess
piercing the veil
of loneliness
hope
and
desire

the poetry of desire has created the maelstrom
a belief in myself
in my power to call in what the universe demands
of lovers
and answering the call
who am i to hesitate
when the time opens up and says forever
i am good to go
perhaps for a year
perhaps for a lifetime
i have only lived this far
i do not know
but i feel

you have awakened the life in me
of potential and possibilities
lying together
side by side
strokes and cuddles
smiles
and groans
as we seek the hand
push back against the night
with laughter
longing
and
full
fill
ment
of
the
we

2-5-16


more than a love poem

mylove[from strange horizons poems]

a love day
to celebrate the year of changes
growth
kisses
and deep understanding

seeing you again today for the first time
i am reminded how easy you are to adore
that first laugh infected my heart
pulling me out of a slumber
brave and strong

aspiring to stand beside you
true
open
vulnerable
seen

reflecting back
brief moments of joy
and belonging
together

1-15-16


How Do We Gain So Much Energy from Love? Agua y besos

aqua y besosI can see how people become addicted to the rush of new relationships. There is a heady mix of lust, hunger, newness, and surprise that perks up your energy and hopefulness. And if we can stay on the positive side of it, we can use it to smash through some of the chains that might be binding us to our old relationships. Love heals all wounds, is a saying that you don’t fully understand until you are back in that gravitational pull of the heart.

The newness and novelty is not love, is it? The fresh new body, never discovered or explored is not where love lies, is it? What is in the air when we have begun to lose our despair and look out towards another person with that glow? What causes the glow? And if we could sustain it, like long-distance lovers, could we stay there in the honeymoon phase forever?

And the flip side, when did it start seeping out of our failed marriages? Do the mundane tasks of work, child rearing, bill paying, maintenance, and chores, wear away the golden glow of our lovers? Is there something we could do now to avoid that let down?

Sex seems so new when you’re with a new partner. There are different bodies, different styles, different smells and frictions. Sex is wonderful. And sex can be… oops… just sex.

Probably the easiest thing to do would be to protect ourselves from it. Avoid it. Stay in the surface, the sex, the passion, and the fleeting thrill of the new relationship. Once divorced, we are released from the tether and toil of our past, it feels like it’s time to sow our wild oats. And I have a few friends that are truly at peace with sleeping with several partners a week. Until they hit upon one who actually begins to make them think about a future together. “She was great,” my friend said. “But she really started to need me, and I’m not ready for that.”

So, here we are, adults. We often have children and responsibilities from our previous relationships. And we are ready for a little adventure. Why not? We’ve certainly earned it.

Sex seems so new when you’re with a new partner. There are different bodies, different styles, different smells and frictions. Sex is wonderful. And sex can be… oops… just sex. And after a few of those, I was not interested in “just sex” anymore.

When the mist of desire begins working its magic again, you learn how much you have missed really having that connection with someone. The thought of them makes you smile. The txt while they are away makes you feel connected. And suddenly, uh oh, you’re into it. You want more. You’re not ready for what’s next, you don’t care what’s next, you just want to keep the rush of warmth going.

Allow time with this other person to be part of what you look forward too, but don’t put all your hopes and dreams on them. Right now you have agua y besos, and there is no better place for you to be.

How can you open up to the risk of love if opening up to it means the possibility of losing it again? And it is the loss of this magical feeling that is the most painful. The contrast of what your heart is feeling now vs. what you were dealing with the last few years of your marriage. It’s almost enough to make you not want to go there.

But some of us are addicted. The romantic notion of love is real and alive. The hopefulness of a relationship that is durable and sustaining, is something we are prepared to strive for. Certainly I am over thinking this, as I lean back into the casual joy of being with someone who is wild about me. And feeling those feelings again, of putting a life together that is open and vulnerable to another person.

Water and kisses are enough in the early stages of bliss. But in the long haul you’ll need to find sustenance and shelter from the storms that are always on the horizon. Better to weather the hurricanes with a partner, you think, as long as that partner doesn’t betray me the way my previous partner did. And there’s the rub. You’ve got the old feelings of loss and anger. You’ve got these new feelings of heat and passion. And somewhere in the middle is the reality of life.

We can’t stay in the “agua y besos” phase forever. And would we really want to? I suppose the serial daters have an addiction to the new high. But I’ve never been able to sustain my passion when there was not more than just sexual attraction.

Feeling the hopefulness coursing through my veins again, I know that my reality is skewed and that taking it slowly is the best course of action. Too frequently we can get swept into decisions based on this wonderful glow. Perhaps that’s how our last relationship ended up in divorce. But not to strive, not to believe that it is possible…

Slow down. Take it easy. Stay in the present moment and enjoy this feeling. You don’t have to figure out the plans. Allow time with this other person to be part of what you look forward too, but don’t put all your hopes and dreams on them. That’s too big to hold. Right now you have aqua y besos, and there is no better place for you to be.

Sincerely,

The Off Parent

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image: first kiss?, John Goodridge, creative commons usage


What Is A Love Poem?

Screen Shot 2013-10-20 at 10.10.14 AM

Why does love elude accurate descriptions? Why is love perhaps the most sought after ghost and the song most sung by those of us who feel?

And the love letter too. So sad that such delicate work is not more widely shared. Often the masterpiece of passion and longing is shared by only two. Is it the privacy that makes it special. Is it the voyeurism that makes them so tasty to read?

Putting love, or our fleeting attempts to capture love, is a grand tradition. I am doing nothing unique or especially different. Of course, my word stream for it will be different from yours. Do you let yours out? If you gave expression to a love poem, right now, what would that sound that ringing of letters tell about your feelings.

Each love poem is a measure of the heart. Often those measurements and mappings are colored by the day’s events. Occasionally they are triggered by a smell, a memory, a glimpse of a photograph that held a tiny sliver of magic.

If we open up our own hearts, opening the veins a little, and let the expressions tumble out, even just for ourselves, we become more familiar with the soundings of our hearts. And as we get more comfortable with the process an amazing thing begins to happen. There is more love.

As we pay attention to certain things they become more important in our lives. And what is more important than love?

Word by word I try to get down something of my longing, quickly, unedited, and with the full force of my feelings. As best I can. But there are many things in the way of a love poem. Chores. Money requirements and thus work. Sadness. (Though finding a voice for the sadness is a way to release what might be underneath, longing for love.)

And poetry is not for everyone. Perhaps a clearly written love letter would be more to the point.

However for me, there is great freedom in allowing my heart and linguistic brain to try to hook up for a moment. Bypassing the editorial board for a minute, I occasionally achieve a satisfying result. But even the bad poems have a purpose. Even writing a poor love letter is better than not expressing that love at all.

Something about letting the expression out of your heart, through your words and sounds and letters on a page, that gives room for more. Each love poem inspires the next. And if you can nurture that “lover’s voice” wouldn’t you rather be speaking in tongues, than writing up another to-do list?

Each. Poem. Has. Value.

And if you write love poems or love letters, focusing on LOVE is a powerful medicine. And the transformation takes place without any effort once you let the flow start. Your heart and language begin to connect more frequently. You see things as LOVE again. You observe love or lack of love in the world, but rather than squelch it off you give voice to your feelings on the subject. It’s a process of opening yourself again to love and loving.

And of course, love is dangerous. If I let myself fall into a poetic trance and forget to pick up my child from school, there are consequences. If I muse for the entire afternoon without getting my work for money done, I’m not serving my life very well.

So love poems have to be tucked into our lives where ever and when ever we can find the impulse. There are so many distractions and requirements that would rather us not pay attention to our hearts, our impulses towards beauty. But with each turning back towards the heart, with each sounding out of a poem of desire, we strengthen that voice in our lives.

Sincerely,

The Off Parent

image via creative commons use – beauty in death

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