Love makes me present

by DRM

He returned to the other point of view — opposite to that of his love and of his jealousy, to which he resorted at times by a sort of mental equity, and in order to make allowance for different eventualities — from which he tried to form a fresh judgment of Odette, based on the supposition that he had never been in love with her, that she was to him just a woman like other women, that her life had not been (whenever he himself was not present) different, a texture woven in secret apart from him, and warped against him.

Marcel Proust, Swann’s Way

Once I could understand this and now I can’t.

For a long time, I wanted to be in love and in looking forced meaning and import into places they had no business being. My heart was like a big, tired dog that kept flopping down in ridiculous and inconvenient places.

Those times I thought I was in love, I struggled with time, imagining the past and the future, vacating the present. Like Proust says: “apart from him, and warped against him.”

I’m describing shadows now, things that I knew but can’t clearly recall.

Love gives you the present. It invites you to be here. It pulls at you when you dawdle, it picks at you when you wander, it draws you down to the very foundation of your soul.

Love takes us out of the clouds and roots us deeply in the ground.

I’ve stood shoulder to shoulder with T. for a long time now. From the very beginning, I couldn’t remember what had come before. The beginning is like yesterday and the future is right now. Every time I look at her I find something new. The natural world emanates from her. She is how the center holds.

There is no time apart, there is no fabric to rend, no handiwork to unravel. In our love, there’s the deep loam, the morning sun, the lyric day and the thick posterity of roots that are wound together, that draw up the earth’s water from a common source of wonder to fuel the brilliant green of the canopy above.