Thursday, April 09, 2015

The Palaces of our Ancestors

A pale morning: white sky, slightly triste; the firs so still that a crow launching itself makes a startling sway in the branches. An equal and opposite reaction, just so, but you don't often see it so clear.

Last night I cradled your head in my elbow and worked your neck with my other hand, and suddenly I longed to be done with service. Always the tenderness: but as time goes I understand better and better how little I can do, and how quickly it fades; or worse, sometimes, how it turns on itself and runs backward. We are strange creatures, with our little monkey desires and our fits of orgulous grandeur, our loneliness and our long parchment checklists for determining under what exact conditions we will accept comfort: checklists so long they get underfoot and trip us, as we peer at their fine print. We go stumbling along the halls of the palaces built by our ancestors, hankering and dreading; terrified of cockroaches but comforted by loaded machine pistols, seduced by glimmers of anything like admiration in a new eye, and indifferent to years of loyalty. 

I am tired of playing the fool, but it's the only role I know. And everyone agrees I'm perfect for the part. (And that's true too, nuncle!)


aravis said...

What you accomplish is not so little. A seminar I attended last week provided this statistic: A single 50 minute massage results in decreased Cortisol levels up to 6 weeks later. We all need some tenderness

Dale said...

Alas, I think you were misinformed about the the cortisol (unless some new study has escaped my attention.) But we do indeed need the tenderness.

Zhoen said...

But, the Fool is the best part.