while sitting outside my kitchen on the porch in my garden that I planted myself with peonies, roses, lavender, sage, rosemary, parsley, thyme, greek oregano, lilies, lilac, irises, baptista, or false indigo, and morning glory, and basil, cilantro, and white wisteria. And tulips and hyacinths in the spring, when you can’t believe that anything is flowering because it has been dark and cold for so long you forgot what green looked like.
And I’m thinking that I love him, of course. He’s the first being who came here and stayed, and only after much upset and dissatisfaction on both sides. We never seemed to be able to please each other utterly, even though we called one another “boyfriend” and “girlfriend” and had not made such a serious commitment in years, and it has lasted way longer than we ever thought it would. And neither one of us is even considering living somewhere else.
Sometimes he seems so aloof, so who-gives-a-shit-about you, and at other times he’s so needy I feel like I”m suffocating. You know? I mean, I adore him. But he’s so difficult. Every man who comes over, it seems, gets the royal treatment. It’s as though he cares more for them than he does for me. I understand that it’s just an act, a form of politeness, and that finally it’s me he loves best. I’m the one. And I even get something out of the arrangement because he makes the guy feel really good, and when I say, “o, he loves you best of all,” the guy always falls for it and starts to thinking that he’s the shit, that he’s got me, that he’s in control. When actually it is I who am manipulating him. The cat helps me with this.
He’s big and orange and stripy, like a mini-tiger, and fat, and lazy, and lazier and fatter every year. He complains loudly when he wants attention, or when breakfast isn’t served promptly enough. Sometimes he even paws at my bedroom door. Drives me crazy. Not in a good way. Sometimes I just don’t seem to have the energy. I love him and think he’s gorgeous, sexy, but I just can’t go there tonight. Thank you so much honey for understanding. I’m soooooooo tired. Then there are other nights when HE (can you believe it?) just couldn’t be bothered. I mean I know he knows I’m here, that he sees me, even wants me, but god damn if he’s going to show me that. No. It’s I’m just gonna sit here in this chair and stare at the wall as if you didn’t even exist. And see how that feels. Yeah. That’s what he’s doing right now. Sitting on the chair, looking off into the night, ignoring the airplane whooshing by overhead, the cloud of gold where the streetlight hits the trees, my fingers clicking. But we sense these things and one another. We know we’re ignoring one another, the bus roaring down Negley, the silence on the grass. It’s too early in the summer for cicadas or crickets. Just the dull irritation of a motorbike in the distance, the sea-shell sound of the city behind it.