In my writing, I want to reach music. I want to become a master of counterimage.
One song recently, one about kissing, made me write the following. The line of the song is included. The piece is not edited, but I consciously included as much hidden rhythm, repetition, and rhyme as I could on the fly:
“I am so busy thinking about kissing you, I spend all day in the back of my mind kissing you. I fell in love with you and it was the last thing I ever expected. And after that, the last thing I expected was to be alone with you. And we are married. And it’s a very good thing.
“They say you marry your mother. Not me. I married a tree. I married a girl with pine needles for hair and bark for skin. I put my hand in your hair. I put my nose in your hair and keep it there and with one more hour to spare in the early morning before work, we stay next to the window in bed, too exhausted to get out of bed for a day of sacrificing memories we together never made.
“Let’s just stay next to the window, where we can see the forest and the trees. And it is that forest I planted when my mother died. A tree for each life in the family. Lord, if you are a merciful God, may I have a tree before my wife after me, she is refreshing to me like a glass of iced whiskey. Do I like it watered down?
“Yes, I do. You make me want to put on a sweater in the fall or take a warm shower. And you will let me listen to you and when we talk, you don’t move away, you stay at the table like a pine tree, rooted, but if I breath breakfast in your face while we talk, you tell me and we move on.
“Over the phone, when I am at work, I hear your voice pressed against my ear like you’re near. With you, I fear no punishment, because with each other, we share everything. I know your past better than you do, I am willing to do the analysis your selflessness does not allow you. And you know my future more than you’ll admit, because if you told me, it’s sick.
“But your knowledge makes me safe. And we stay faithful to God together. And the walls of flesh that might separate us, the Holy Spirit has broken down and they lay on the ground at the end of the bed and when I come home from work, my office in the woods, you put a crown on my head, because we are all princes.
“I recline in the armchair at the fire and have you tell me about your day, because you have been dying all day to tell me and I’ve been dying all day without the light of God in you.
“Though the world reviles me, though I am left to some degree friendless and without my past liberty, though even my friends and admirers misunderstand me, and are unwilling to be lost in me, you have drawn a thousand Venn diagrams of my heart. I need you, because I have never had myself and I am complete when I love outside myself and into someone else.”
I hear the people who are actually married whispering to their computers right now, “But there is no sacrifice there – it is not real love.” Something to that affect.
Well, yes. The piece is highly romanticized. I would not defend that romanticism, but I would willingly defend the longing for love, which is a good. I was not trying to describe actual love, only the longing of a love song – and the comedy.