Facing death calmly is praiseworthy only if one faces it alone. Death together is no longer death, even for unbelievers. The source of sorrows lies not in leaving life, but in leaving that which gives it meaning. When love is our whole life, what difference is there between living together and dying together ?
I think our last kiss was meant to be quick and chaste, but after the first touch of his lips fire leaped up and roared through my belly. My fingers yanked him close, digging into his back, and his arms crushed me to him as if wanting to meld us together. I knotted my fingers in his hair and bit down on his bottom lip, making him groan. His lips parted, and my tongue swept in to dance with his. There was nothing sweet or gentle in our last kiss; it was filled with sorrow and desperation, of the bitter knowledge that we could've had something perfect, but it just wasn't meant to be.
THIS IS WHYHe will never be given to wonder muchif he was the mouth for some cruel forcethat said it. But if he were(this will comfort her) less than one momentout of millions had he meant it. So many years and so many turnsthey had swerved around the subject.And he will swear for many morethe kitchen and everything in it vanished --the oak table, their guests, the refrigerator doorhe had been surely propped against--all changed to rusted ironwork and ashexcept in the center in her linen caftan:she was not touched.He remembers the silence before he spokeand her nodding a little,as if in the meat of this gray wastehere was the signalfor him to speak what they had long agreed,what somewhere they had prepared together.And this one moment in the desert of ashstretches into forever.They had been having a dinner party.She had been lonely. A friend asked her almost jokingif she had ever felt really crazy,and when she started to unwind her answerin long, lovely sentences like scarves within herhe saw this was the waythey could no longer talk together.And that is when he said it,in front of the guests,because he couldn't bear to hear her.And this is why the guests have leftand she screams as he comes near her.
Technically, on the spectrum of very bad things, they did nothing truly wicked. But of course, that spectrum has no measure for the greatest of all carnal sins, the kind that occurs before skin touches skin, before wondering turns to yearning, yearning to having, having to holding for dear life, when two people cling to each other so desperately that even when they lie, inches apart, neither is fully satisfied until the light between them turns to darkness.
He were found drowned. He were coming home very hopeless o' aught on earth. He thought God could na be harder than men; mappen not so hard; mappen as tender as a mother; mappen tenderer. I'm not saying he did right, and I'm not saying he didn't wrong. All I say is, may neither me nor mine ever have his sore heart, or we may do like things.
He was lovable the way a child is lovable, and he was capable of returning love with a childlike purity. If love is nevertheless excluded from his work, it's because he never quite felt that he deserved to receive it. He was a lifelong prisoner on the island of himself. What looked like gentle contours from a distance were in fact sheer cliffs. Sometimes only a little of him was crazy, sometimes nearly all of him, but, as an adult, he was never entirely not crazy. What he'd seen of his id while trying to escape his island prison by way of drugs and alcohol, only to find himself even more imprisoned by addiction, seems never to have ceased to be corrosive of his belief in his lovability. Even after he got clean, even decades after his late-adolescent suicide attempt, even after his slow and heroic construction of a life for himself, he felt undeserving. And this feeling was intertwined, ultimately to the point of indistinguishability, with the thought of suicide, which was the one sure way out of his imprisonment; surer than addiction, surer than fiction, and surer, finally, than love.