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Monday, May 28, 2012

Quietude, Finitude and the War of the Roses

His eyes were fixed on her face.

Her hands instinctively flew up to her cheeks, hiding the lines that time and pain had etched there. He stepped towards her, gently grasping her hands in his, and raised them to touch both hands, fingertips all, to his lips. His voice was low, and quiet.

"You have life, and the passage of time, in your eyes, to mix with the fire there". He pressed one of her hands to his chest, and raised the other to his cheek, laying it gently there, like a bandage. She stroked his face gently, spreading the fusings of time and agony away, like a brushstroke on canvas.

"Ah, Mishka mine." Her laugh hovered in her throat, like a piece of toffee, savoured and tasted, like the fire of a sip of brandy, on a freezing winter night - just enough tremble and sizzle to make him breathe in, tingling, and exhale....and, in doing so, recognize the thrill of being alive.   

She bent her head, and pressed her lips to his cheek, and then drew back, smiling at him.

"I can feel the air, coursing through here". She touched his throat, gently, with her index finger, where the pulse was beating like a slow, methodical drum.

Then she threw back her head, and laughed, the wildness not yet extingished, despite the years.

He smiled, stroking the cap of hair, which made her look like some strange elf, or a wild Inuit woman, loping along in the gathering gloom, devoid of pelts. He rather liked her without the tresses...or with them; it just made her fiercer, somehow. The Roma in her made him twinge....and trod gently. He knew that glint.
"Can you imagine?", she murmured, leaning in against his lips, speaking against them, with hers, while conspiratorially, rubbing his nose with hers, and murmuring....."that some poor chit told someone else that I was a LESBIAN?'' The sudden, spontaneous grin split his face in two, with her glinting hazel orbs two inches from his face....he couldn't help it: he burst out laughing. It rumbled in his chest, comfortably.

Then he swung her around, roaring, until they both tumbled into the sand, and lay there, laughing; too old to care; and too young to stop from clinging to each other.  The urgency, after this time, was touching.

He pressed her face against his neck, and spoke to the top of her head.

"Clearly a manic woman, Contessa Fireball....or maybe just jealous, I think." He said the last somewhat softly, and kissed the top of her head. "Are you still mad at me for leaving?" They were locked in an embrace somewhat startling to him, if only for its fierceness.

"Everyone leaves me", she said, quietly."Except the ones who cling to me until I can't move, or breathe...." she sighed, moving her head back , to look him full in the face, softly, and smiled at him. He held his arms in the air, exaggeratedly, wide-eyed, and she gave him a soft punch in the arm.

 "Life gave me a moment of fire so sweet that it burned itself into my life, and my heart, forever....." She spoke the words with a nostalgic reverence, savouring them, quietly.   

She continued. "Some might call me old, my darling, and I never was any kind of testament to physical perfection or beauty, but the lines are a different, wild testament -  to fierceness, and feeling. Did you expect anything else from me, at the last, then?"

Her voice was soft, but her eyes were green flecks of steel, nestled amongst the grey. This was a woman who had made it her business to drag men bigger than him back into wanting to live. Beneath every other conflicting emotion coursing through him, there was immediately, there, along with what had been present the day he met her: unspoken, implicit respect. 
He ran his finger along her lips, and kissed them. They were soft, and firm, and gentle rock, just as he remembered.

Age had made her interesting, concerned, compassionate, fierce, and complicated: gone was the girl. The  wild rock woman in her place pressed her fingers into the side of his head, laid her cheek along the side of his face, and said,

"Time has flown away, along with all of the things I might have asked you, as far as what you might have expected of yourself,  my Soul. There is only today."

They lay back, wild and calm, peering at the stars peeking out into the blanket of ink sky, and as she cradled her head against his neck, the green flash of sunset burst out for a moment, lighting their face in glint and shadow - and the promise of a new day. He felt a calmness he had not felt for twenty years, surging through him, like an elixir.

He bent against her, breathing in Time with the rise and fall of her breasts, which he laid his face upon,  gently, as, staring into the sky, he was suddenly awestruck at the diamonds which had suddenly shown themselves, whirling and still, in the pale, glowing sky. 

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