But I want him for life, she said, quivering.
The man just stood and smiled. Standing and smiling and grieving. How can you condemn one to such a task? You know nothing of life beyond this moment. And this very moment, he is not yours to keep. Will you ask that he fail you even before he knows for what he lives?
I will ask, she said. How can I not ask?
Askance does not align with such claims. Ownership for life equally assigns one to subservience for life. You cannot make a slave of the man you love. You must ask, and therefore you must ask not.
And she thought love was the answer.
Perhaps, she had not loved long enough.
You drink wine long enough, you pass out. Inhale nicotine dreams long enough … fall into cancer and never crawl home… Love … is it the same? Have I not yet discovered its poison? Have I not yet matured into its pain?
And all she could think, hiding under the mink threads and forgotten sun, was how fitting that love, to her, was just like wine. Nicotine. Uncontrolled, destructive substances, that she once believed would bring her to Grace.
…. He was smothering her, one breath followed by silence. A silence that lasts through the night, through her dreams and drips out, the blood sucking through his teeth. How can one become such? No suchness … no life. Just one soul consumed. Living beneath the pavement of all else that screams to be real. To be walked upon and be bled upon. One life underneath the waves of war; a breathless moment that survives without air.