Sunday, March 28, 2010

Consumption


She's old now. And you'd wonder at the bitterness that she wears like a jacket pulled tight around her. But finally on a snowy cold Saturday evening your patience pays off. The flames of the fire create the intimacy of the confessional. A couple of glasses of sherry and the story slides right out of her.

Did you ever love a man so much that when it finally all turns to acid you get to experience a hate you can’t even imagine?

A hate that makes you want to hurt him so badly that he lives in pain the rest of his life? You don’t want to kill him because that would be too good for him and you couldn’t handle the grief anyway of him being dead. But you could handle him suffering every day of his life. And part of his suffering would be hating you.

Have you ever felt that kind of hate? It curdles your stomach every morning when you wake up.

Sure we all pretend to be above that kind of thing, don’t we? Well some of us are. But the some of us that are have never felt the kind of love that wants to draw blood either, right?

Like you could never get enough of him. Like six of him would be ten too short. Like if he were ten thousand drinks you could never get drunk on him.

It’s like a disease, an addiction. There’s something mental about it. Like you’re not living in this world at all, like you can’t work or eat or sleep.

And part of you knows how insane it all is and part of you never wants it to end but part of you is weeping for the end of it all the time, because you know it has to end. No one could handle this kind of passion every day for the rest of their lives.

And then it does. Ends. Like it burns out. But something else gets lit. That hate. And it makes you doubt the love you felt. As if you don’t know what love is about at all.

And that’s your hell right there. So you make a hell for him. There are all sorts of ways of making a hell for a man. Women are far too clever and devious for their own good and only get caught if they want to be, right?

And you become this person with the hate pouring out like sweat. Every single pore leaking it. And it never seems to go away.

And you can’t seem to love anyone else when you wake up with that sour in the belly every morning and that sweat waiting to leak all over everything. It doesn’t matter - be it a child or a cat or an old lady.

That hate takes everything away. It puts a face like mine on you. And you’d think the fire of that hate would light up something else.

But it’s like one of them black holes. All it throws out in front of you is darkness.

12 comments:

  1. What she felt for this man may have been passion, it may have been desire, it may have been possession, it may even have been lust - but it was never truly love.

    Neither does she hate him. She hates herself for losing him.

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  2. We label lots of things as love, even hate. When we wrap our whole life around another, the relationship is bound to suffocate and die. Better to be the cake ourselves and let another be the frosting.

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  3. Hate like that sounds like a terrible way to live. I don't feel like I know enough about love to say that what she felt was not love, I don't feel like I can condemn her for not loving enough. I do feel sorry though that she can't seem to move on from something that is obviously so self-destructive. Maybe she's just held it in too long.

    I once lived in a small town and fell into a similar trap, I think if I had stayed there I'd be in her shoes. Sometimes the geographic cure works.

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  4. I've never hated that intensely, but then I've never loved that intensely either. That degree of passion can bring either ecstasy or agony, clearly agony in this case. I hated my father but not that bitterly, it was just a sort of simmering, slow-burning aversion.

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  5. At least two lives ruined because someone doesn't know how to let go of an old passion. This is the sort of tragedy that gets dragged through family court every day and marks children for life, as hostages in an unending, unwinnable war. I don't know how you could bear to hear it all pour out of her, WWW. xoT

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  6. The lady deserves our sympathy, I suppose, WWW. She's just about as unbalanced emotionally as they come. On the cusp of mental disturbance in fact.

    I'd love to know her birth data - I'd bet a clear imbalance would show up.

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  7. @RJA:
    I'm a firm believer in that 'love' can't be boxed and labelled. I've felt the love she described (only once and I'm grateful, I couldn't have handled more than that!)and it can take that kind of turn if there's nothing to take its place, like a child or an artistic passion of some kind. She lives on a substantial alimony monthly cheque which will never end. There is more to the story of course than I've written here.
    @Pauline:
    I wonder about that, a healthy relationship is to be admired but one of passion can truly inspire even though they never do last!
    @Annie
    You know whereof I speak then. Trapped in s small town feeling like that is what does the head in. I am using part of her story in a novel I'm finishing. I would call it love, even though it devours everything in sight. I could be wrong. Lust doesn't seem to be the term at all as it is beyond lust. IMO.
    @Nick:
    I did have that as mentioned above and it very nearly killed me (and him). One never gets over it and it impacted my future relationship in a kind of wistfulness. Hard to explain. I don'r regret it though.
    @Tessa:
    I'm a marvellous listener and also story teller. Part of me was thinking "she never thought of killing herself" - remarkable. Because after I went through my 2 year hiatus from life in the heat of Grand Passion I did feel like life was no longer worth living. Remember the Lady Gregory poem?
    @Twilight:
    Aye, but there's the rub. Apart from this hate, she functions beautifully even unto being prominent in the local church. I'll see if I can pry her DOB from her.
    XO
    WWW

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  8. I know of a case like that. My stepfather's first wife hated him after their divorce for the rest of her life. And her hate extended to my mother and to me as a child of 8 years. She used to call up and say terrible things about him, about my mother and about me.

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  9. 20CW:
    I believe there are more around than we are aware. It is a raison d'etre for a hidden subsection of humanity. Most are not as obvious as your stepfather's first wife. They are more subtle, like my conversationalist.
    XO
    WWW

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  10. I´ve loved that intensely that it made me lose my mind and it was horrible and took me many years to get over it. I´ve hated that much too and sought revenge. Luckily, I´m cured now and amazed by myself, but I will never forget those feelings and what it made me capable of.

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  11. GSW:
    Somehow I knew that about you. it changes us forever, doesn't it?

    It is like being in a mental institution. I'm glad we got out. My poor acquaintance is still in it.

    XO
    WWW

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  12. Hate ages the skin and etches lines of bitterness into it.

    No man is worth that fate.

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