Epistemysics

Some theatre each day keeps the doctor away…

Sonnet 7

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Our courage wanes at hot proximity,
With distant eyes unsteeled when metres close;
Far glances loose become rigidity
Upon a blanding view; your phone; my toes.
We walked together, side by awkward side,
Last night when we first met – first met? first caught! –
Then with naive pretense did idly glide
Past once, past twice, past thrice with vict’ry naught…
When play was done we stood apart to leave;
I slowed, you sped, we leveled in the crowd;
The air turned short, lips tense, yet none would thieve
A simple line, as bravery was cowed.
Yet hope I have to see you once again,
And trust the fifth encounter’s not in vain.

What could have been, yes?  What weary, saddening words.  One day I will learn to pluck courage from a chicken.  Shall we psychoanalyse, dear reader?  Shall we probe dear Adam?  Let’s.  For I have the maddening habit – the defense reflex (defense from what, I know not) – of becoming suddenly proud and aloof in the presence of a person I’m interested in.  In the close presence, that is.  I can look across a room, I can subtly grin upon the glance away from eyes that meet, but the moment that something might actually happen, that said person might near my person, then any kind of semblance of openness shuts down most of the time.  Indeed, if I were madly in love with an elephant, I would do such a good job of pretending that I didn’t know it was in the room that the animal would begin to doubt its own existence.

There was a point during the interval of Vere (Faith), after we’d seen each other a few times beforehand, where I was walking down the foyer, on my way outside to take in the fresh air and eat my muesli bar…  And I looked up to catch the aforementioned walking towards me, and looking directly at me, and as we neared, it looked as if they were about to slow, or they were slowing, and they were turning towards me (instead of walking past like they originally seemed to be doing), and so I did the only sensible thing and looked away (you know, in case they thought I might actually be interested, or that they might notice that the mere fact that one of the most attractive people I’ve seen all year was looking back at me out of their own volition was making my chest tighten) and headed straight for the door.  Of course, I can’t be sure if they were even going to approach me, because I didn’t let it get that far.  And I’m swearing at myself on the inside, basically convinced that – probably exaggerating my own actions in my mind somewhat – I’d virtually slammed a metaphorical door right on their nose and acted as if it were their fault that they were in the way of it, and so there’d be no chance that they’d pluck up the courage I didn’t have to do what I wouldn’t do.

But then the play finishes, and even though they’re in the second row of the stalls and I’m in row N (I randomly unearthed their position when everyone was turned around for the person who collapsed (I did not look systematically; I thought that the best chance to see them again would be in the interval – ha!); I think I read about a page of my book in four whole minutes after I noticed), and even though they weren’t in sight when I hit the stairs at the side (I knew they had to be further down), by the time I’d made it to the top, and was walking along the back, they were next to me for the rest of the journey out of the theatre.  And then I’m wondering whether it’s just blind coincidence or if they’re positioning themselves, and it takes me all of half a minute to even half look in their direction (and get a profile of their face in the corner of my eye)…  And this walk along the back of the stalls is the width of two people, and they didn’t seem to be within range of anyone they knew, so there was no ‘group’ to intrude upon, leaving space for lust/love/whatever to take the floor…

A simple “did you like the play?” would have sufficed – what other question could be better in the situation? – but that was far too intelligent and reasonable a response for me.  How much better to do nothing, avoid embarrassment, and be miserable!  Never mind that it might be my only chance to start a relationship with someone whose face I could stare at contentedly across a dinner table for the rest of my life…

This is why I will die alone, surrounded by 30-year old newspapers and half-eaten by my twenty eight cats.

Then again, maybe they were a complete imbecile, and so I’m missing out on nothing.  Yeah.  That’ll get me to sleep easy at night, thinking that, won’t it?  (Not that I’ve lost sleep, mind you.  Give it a week and I will rarely think about them anymore.  Until they pop back into a theatre of mine in the future.)

And of course, to make matters worse, I end up being perfectly sociable and have a good time with about ten complete strangers and stay until the very precipice of the party coming to a close.  (One of the waiters, for instance, let us know that what he was pouring was the last bottle of wine left.)  (And I say ‘perfectly sociable’, though I don’t really know, as that’s somewhat of an objective – or a summed up subjective – judgement.  Let us say that I “didn’t feel awkward with ten complete strangers”, which is all I can ask for.)  I managed to ask all of them whether they liked the play or not, too.  We even delved into our opinions on it.  Oh, the melancholy irony of it all…

Anyway, this is all to say that the sonnet is somewhat autobiographical for once.

Well.  That was a good way to demoralise myself.  We should do this more often.  Next week, say?  I’ll bring the heartache, you bring the alcohol.

Something’s wrong with the twelfth line of that sonnet – with the rhythm of it – and I don’t know what it is, and it’s annoying me.  (Which is not to say that the rhythm of the rest of it is perfect, mind you.)  I suspect that the lack of a volta is overweighing things, and especially asking too much of the final couplet.  Probably.

It suddenly occurs that if I bury myself within my book, and don’t take notice of what’s around me, then I wouldn’t have time to tense up when attraction disturbs my orbit.  Hmm.  Of course, I’m guessing that there’s quite a lot of people that I might like that wouldn’t come up to me while I was reading, so that I could be inadvertently culling prospective mates.  Hmm.  Hmm!

531/whatever.

For some reason today – presumably hormonal – I was considering the idea of two people having sex blindfolded, as a way to ‘spice things up’, as it were.

Half an hour later, my mind returned to those thoughts, and I realised that one may as well just go into a room and turn the lights off, yes?  Duh.  Or, you know, do what most new couples will tend to do regularly, and mess around under the covers.  One could hardly say that the eyes are used much in such a situation.

What new ways of attacking life will I think of next, I wonder?  Perhaps you could wrap cling-wrap around the tines of your fork, to create a kind of bowl, so you could eat soup with the fork without it all dripping through!

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Written by epistemysics

November 13, 2013 at 1:18 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

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