Mr. E Asked A Question

In response to Mr. E’s comment on a previous post:

If I were insane, how would I know? You and I could sit over coffee and have a nice chat and at the end of it you might be tempted to tell me you were fairly certain I was off my rocker, but would I be able to believe you? In my case I have lots of history to look back on and that gives me some perspective on myself. I can look back and say “Oh, my! I was certainly not thinking too clearly, was I?” It is all relative, after all.

So what about love? I have offered a few paragraphs here to describe my understanding of the nature of love and its effect on Man and I know I have mentioned that there is a difference between this love to which Man is predisposed and the Romantic Love that is the source of such joy, such excess and such sorrow. I understand that first love- I rely upon it when I try to understand you and everybody else surrounding me. The second love, let me spell it Love for clarity’s sake, is something I try to avoid. It is dangerous to me. It is madness most raw.

Just so that you do not begin to think I am talking nonsense, please understand that what follows applies strictly to me and not to others.

Love is an invitation to pain and despair. When I allow myself to fall in Love I am guaranteeing myself a painful ending, one that is not possible, but inevitable. Tell me, please, what is rational about willingly inviting such horror in to my life? Given that, is it at all surprising that I have only had Love in my life four times?

Each time, I fooled myself in some way.

The first time was easy- when I confessed to him that his slave was immortal, he nodded and pronounced me Diana for he had encountered me as a huntress in the wilderness. Somehow my lack of chastity did not deter him in his conviction. When over the next few years our mutual foolishness made itself clear he ordered me bound hand and foot and forced me to watch as he opened his veins and bled to death. He believed he was doing the right thing.

I was none too eager to repeat that experience, but I did, three more times, the last being my Jeremy, whom I have discussed at some length. Each time I told myself that I could grasp those brief years of delirium, that the pain waiting at the end would be bearable, that this time I was far too mature to allow the inevitable to scar me so. Each time I was wrong. Oh, to be certain with the passage of time the pain eased, to be replaced with a certain rueful recognition of my own foolishness, but the memory of those times…

Only the last time came close to breaking the pattern, but I begin to suspect that there is more to play from that episode in my life. Jeremy is not through with me yet.

So, Love lures me with the promise of decades of joy and blinds me to a century of pain in payment. Self-delusion indeed. Do not seek to find flaws here, instead recognize that what I say of myself does not apply to all- it cannot for reasons I do believe I have made explicit.

One Response to “Mr. E Asked A Question”

  1. The following comments are as they first appeared on the old BlogSpot/Haloscan system. –ZM

    It is love and pain that reminds you that you are yet alive. Without either, you are nothing but a whisp of carbon.

    So love.

    chris | Email | Homepage | 10.30.03 – 11:03 pm | #

    I could imagine growing tired of remembering I was yet alive, in her shoes. From time to time anyway.
    Travis | Email | Homepage | 10.31.03 – 12:26 am | #

    Even as there is no way I can fully comprehend your rather unique perspective, I would contend here that there is little chance that you, being who you are, could really understand the depth of the honor that you bestow on me with the mere implication that my thoughts on the topic would be worth discussion. I have noticed that you do not suffer fools lightly. That you should address me at all makes me feel somewhat less the fool.

    If I may be permitted to prattle a bit further, though, I would say this. As the gourmet feast and fine wine are to simple nourishment, so is romantic Love to the simple form of love that is the natural state of Man. It would certainly lead to various unpleasantries, including a number of life-threatening health issues, if I were to feast in Dionysian splendour over a lifetime, but there are equal dangers to the more spartan diet.

    As with the sustinence of the bosy, so is it with the sustinence of the soul. It is unseemly, even self-destructive, that one’s heart should be ever-ripe for the harvest, in constant state of flame after one with pretty face, or the other with sweet words. But to deprive one’s self of that richest of fare, the utter abandonment of senses and self-preservation to one who would do the same, even under the promise of inevitible suffering, is to condemn the soul to oat porridge. Can one such as yourself, having tasted, make that condemnation, even with a soldier’s dicipline, a master’s logic, and an incomparable intellect?

    I should hope for more than that for you, who have inspired so many, including my meek and humble self.


    As for your proposed “madness”, even were I to concede that one cannot recognize one’s own madness, surely it must be clear that one so lucid, so clearly communicated, as yourself can not be pronounced anything but sound.
    Mr. E. | Email | Homepage | 10.31.03 – 6:23 am | #