It was once a simple separation. I lusted often, but I rarely loved. The lust was clean and easy. The love was tangled up with ideas of rejection, low self-esteem, my jealous streak.
I have become soft in my older age. I have my everyday moments of lust but they seem not to touch me with the same kind of intensity. Potential lovers brush past me and I am barely moved. They wouldn't be interested anyway. They are fading from my view just as I have become invisible to them.
Love is dragging me out of my comfortable sleep. My body is waking to it. I greet the ones I love with more ferocity. Sometimes I cry. I love you and I will never touch you. An ache like a cancer. It has infected my whole body and I am sick with it.
I love you, you love me too. Smiley friendly love, and that seems not enough for me. The youthfulness is seeping out of my body and it will be wasted.
My beautiful boy is here with me in my bed and his body is robust. It is weathering the storm. Mine, like my confidence, has not been so resilient. I feel the loss of this.
No point. I turn every piece of clothing out onto the bed. None of it makes a difference to me now. It is all a veil to hide the truth from the world. I will waste no more energy. I am here. Underneath the clothes and the tired sag of skin. Beneath the caricature of sexuality. I have things to say, truths I have stumbled upon, poetry, words lying dormant as seeds waiting for the winter to pass.
The winter is passing. All my care will be for the next book now. Something beautiful might grow.
Yes I love you, but no, I will never have the coveted jewel of your attention. I will let go of your hand and you will fall into the care of someone more appropriate. I stop now and I turn back to my work.