Ticket To Ride, Book 2, Chapter 24: There’s nothing to do but love each other…

Skating at Rockefeller Center, Tina Cobelle-Sturges
Skating at Rockefeller Center, Tina Cobelle-Sturges

Livy – Journal Entry (cont.’d)

Our second day, the public library, the Guggenheim and doing the work of business that feeds me and he admiring my drivenness and saying how like the driven snow I am, being dreamy in my head and thinking romantic thoughts that cancel the others that would aggressively crowd into my head. Together we’re strong and more clear with the same clarity one gains from being in church, and in the words of the priest. With him and together I’m seeing the road as a clear one and the clutter is clearing and I for the first time in my life am allowing it and forgetting the brake pedal but minding that I not push too hard on the accelerator. Sparks flew when I first saw him. Got to try to keep those sparks from setting things on fire, keep the fire contained between us, and not let it let me let everything else go around me and blind myself to all the things I’d rather not do. The things that require walking and staying on the ground, being a well-fed, carefully tended fire and a wistful pedestrian with wings. As I sat on the beach in Ibiza I had hoped for this.

“I’m a little worried.”

“Why?”

“I feel like I love you so much I’m going to explode.”

“I know what you mean. I feel the same way.”

“What should we do.”

“There’s nothing to do but love each other.”

“Aren’t you afraid it’ll all come undone?”

“Do you want it to come undone?”

“No but…”

“Then it won’t as long as we’re honest.”

“Yeah.”

“I mean really honest, no convenient secrets, no holding back, no assumptions.”

“That makes sense.”

“We’ll just run with it.”

“Then let’s run.”

There was lots of music today in spite of the cold. He told me about how he’d like to make some, both with me and with a guitar, and his words. We walked by the Empire State and through Central Park, thinking about dancing in one of the clubs, and later dancing together in our nakedness. And finally I’d enjoy the dance of “the game” that it seems to be. The game that I’ve run counter to, not wanting flaunt my plumage in the eternal mating ritual; just to move together if that’s what it feels like. And feeling like it I pushed play and let it happen.

We walked by places and saw Times Square and the offices of the New Yorker and saw prostitutes and straddled the paradox of sex for money and how sad that is and how it must feel good sometimes. By the New Yorker we talked about my work. The New Yorker and all its highest of esteem and he stood there telling me how much more it is than the Pyramids and I gave him a running and romantic commentary of my history of gypsies and he, as I was, rode the magic carpet of Russian mysticism, paisleyed carpet with maroon and gold and tassels blowing with the wind of our movement. I smiled as he drew word pictures of seminal feats and pretended to play a balalaika to serenade me. It was serene as he spoke, and in the serenity our hair rose with the breeze and he looked at my neck and I felt him want to kiss it and my shoulders and my arms and my breasts and my shoulders, we, wanting to kiss everywhere and be suspended on a soft white cloud of down and thread counts uncountable.

We went ice-skating at Rockefeller Center with its golden flying mercury and I skated like a clod and he sailed, or maybe not. He told me about how he had a pond nearby his house in Portland and how it froze in the winter and how he’d skate and ride sleds but he also told me that he hadn’t skated much in the past 10 years and I laughed at his awkwardness and he laughed at me laughing at him and he loved that I found his awkwardness comical and hoped it was even endearing. And because he was the better skater he held me close to keep me from falling and then made me fall by being clutzy. On the ice we laughed again and I wiped some of the sleet from it and ate it and said “Mmmm,” tasting mountain springs and I gave some to him and smiled and we skated some more and then got Hot Chocolate with Peppermint Schnapps in it and we felt almost too warm, and loosened our scarves and I saw him see my neck again and I talked about tea and magic spells and brews that bring tranquility and peace.

He told me that his novella needed work and that there was bit of vagueness in it, “Not a problem,” I said and understood because I have a tendency toward vagueness too like when I tell of a place and don’t say where it is and tell of a person and don’t give details about how they look. But I volunteered to help with it and he was pleased with my interest. We were on the Circle Line then, going ’round the island and seeing the Statue of Liberty and there were Orthodox Jews on the boat and I admired their devotion, and all sorts of other people. We saw the ruins of Governor’s Island and talked about building our own cities and saw all of the old brick on the waterfront and thought of how charming the old things were in New York.

We went to the Met tonight and he liked the opera because I liked it. Big women and big men singing from the bottoms of their hearts and he didn’t understand what they were saying but he’d smile when I closed my eyes and he felt the song through me and loved the way I felt it. He tried not to be crass and came close to being almost cultured as he sat next to me and we enjoyed just being near each other in comfortable seats. I wore something shiny that lay softly against my skin and he said he admired the drape of it and how the color, being black and maroon and rich, complemented my olive skin and “set off” the blondish auburn of my tously hair. His hand held mine and he squeezed it occasionally and the squeeze sent warm shivers all the way through me and I liked how they sometimes wriggled into a knitting of cross-stitch and sweated a little. He rubbed one of my fingers with two of his and said he thought “how Basho might try to capture the simple beauty of a woman’s fingers and her hand.” and how he thought my hands were like the “hands of God and heavenly made” and how fitting it was, I thought, tongue in cheek, that they were the hands of a gypsy princess.

He’s here now, and being that we’re connected this way I fantasize that he knows that I’m writing this and knows how I’ve been feeling today. I’m a gypsy princess and all that that entails and I know now that I am entailed in his entailing. The sun casts a nice light this time of year. Bye for now Trudy. Writing to do. We’re gonna go places for a while.

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