A couple musts…

Short post — got lots on the plate — but here are a couple bits and pieces worth sharing, devouring, consuming:

“Wild Strawberries.” Nope, not the edible kind, although those are always welcome, but the Ingmar Bergman variety — made all the more surreal after reading W.G. Sebald’s “The Rings of Saturn.”  Beautiful cinematography, a gentle cadence and the sense of being trailed — and doomed — in an unhinging, decomposing world.

From the reading list: Vivian Gornick’s “Fierce Attachments.” I find myself flinching at her honesty and insight, although she never does. And had to laugh — and share last night — her experience with a relationship that burned so fiery hot that the man seemed to melt into a molten puddle. And then I wished that I didn’t understand.

An excerpt:

A strange psycho-spiritual-metaphysical bable seemed to have taken possession of him. I kept saying, “What are you talking about?” Finally, in a loud, clear voice, he said, “You must exorcise your father’s spirit. Your masculine-feminine natures are pulling at each other. You are not a whole woman. I can only marry a whole woman.”

I received this information in silence. Then I said, “Well … in the meantime … can’t we just fuck?”

The following Saturday we spent an exhausting, obsessed twenty-four hours together. We made love continuously, and he talked endlessly at me. Over and over again he said to me, “I am the universe. You must spread your legs wide, open your womb to me. In me will be united all that you are, all poetry, kindness, tenderness, aggressiveness, all that is vibrant, glowing, alive, beautiful in the universe. If you marry me your children will be virile, robust, poets, makers of music, full of majesty. If you don’t they will be faggots and lesbians, evil and diseased.” He crooned, hissed and spat at me. We left the house once to go to a movie. Sitting in the dark, in relation to nothing that was happening on the screen, he gripped my arm and whispered in my ear, “The masculine and the feminine are one. You will not let them be one. In you is both the masculine and the feminine, the light and the dark, the black and the void. Let them come together and you will be one, you will be whole, you will be all, the woman and the man, the universal human.”

In the book’s margin I scrawled, in bright red letters: “Run for the hills!

She didn’t have to, since his meltdown ended with a near-overnight conversion to Orthodox Judaism, complete with the black duds, sidelocks and beard. My best friend, Isbell, took in the passage and repeated her refrain: “I want a relationship, not a traumaship, but they seem to go together.” Which is why she avoids it all.

Enjoy the weekend, everyone.

-Christy

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