Over 40 years after he knocked her to the ground, breaking her nose,
My earliest memory of him,
28 years after their divorce, followed by another failed marriage and another
With the yelling still echoing in my ears
He says, as he lay there in a bed draped in his last regrets
“I don’t know what went wrong. I always loved your ma. I still do to this day”
So I ask yet again, What is Love?
Puppy love, the love of a good book, “Love, love, LOVE my BFF”
Is it naive to think it’s much more than the quickening of the pulse one feels
As your date pulls up out front
He worked hard, it’s not that
He told us every day how much he loved us, hugged and kissed us
Then smacked you across the head if you wore the wrong shoes
“What are you, stupid?” Was he joking?
Not when the police arrived. Every time they arrived
I never realized how much he loved us until I was much older
I never realized until even older than that, the word “love” is a cop out
Naivety strikes again
If someone says they love you forty times a day yet
Does nothing to contribute to your well-being
Often as not hurts your feelings, throws their dirty laundry of life in your lap
Sucks the living life out of you
Does it make it love because they say it is?
Some times there are those who pretend for a really long time to do the right thing
What is that?
I stopped pretending I knew when I was sixteen and ran away from home
I thought I was in love
Talk about rude awakenings
So, why the eternal optimism?
I’m thinking now that it’s really just a game of hide and go seek
I always was competitive in my own way
Into the happiness of pursuit
Is it because they need you so badly and they want it to be so
She had the brains
He had the braun
They both needed someone
Wanted someone desperately for alleged acceptance or support I guess
Even after they split she would call him to deal with the repairmen
Or her unruly teenage daughter
What do I know
I suppose it can only be real if every part of you screams out loud
“This feels right!”
But, what about when it fades away?
Who stokes the fire, who’s duty is it, what does that look like?