“ Love arrives
and in its train come ecstasies
old memories of pleasure
ancient histories of pain.
Yet if we are bold,
love strikes away the chains of fear
from our souls.”
In the first week of March 1970, a few weeks prior to my 17th birthday, my life changed, inextricably.
I looked up and saw a girl ascending a staircase, laughing.
The earth swayed in it’s orbit and my legs buckled under me. (I actually looked around to see how others were being affected by the earthquake. There was no sign of movement or of a general panic)
So I looked back at the girl. A radiance seemed to envelop her, emanate from her. I could breath but could not hear, as waves of emotion engulfed me and my pounding heart thundered in my ears. A great glory pulsed through my veins. My heart sang in harmony with the heart of the universe. My body was golden, strong and full of purpose. I was hers, inextricably, bound, and devoted. I was in love.
This story does not have an end. I have lived the last 40 years with the consequences of that (unrequited) love. Though I haven’t seen her for about 36 years, in some respects she has been with me every day, in my heart, in my soul, never far from my conciousness.
At first it was strange. I was this person who in an instant, had transgressed the boundaries of gender and sexuality as I then understood them. But at the same time, everything came into sharp focus and the strangeness of being me became explicable, the past confusions resolved instantly. I was made to love like this. And it was good, and great, and right.
And that, my friends, has consequences.
I’ll address these another day. This post was just to set the scene, and advise my audience, if any, of a major theme in this work.