a-calypso-beckmann

A couple weeks ago, a friend asked me what I write about here if I’m not having sex.

Exactly.

Last night I was lying in bed, late, and from nowhere my mind conjured Robbie’s smell and taste.  If I named the components of his smell, it would not sound flattering: tobacco, coffee, soap and shampoo, a hint of urine, the oil from his skin.  Rolled together, the scents smell like chocolate or toasted almonds or anything light and edible.   I started to cry.  I chided myself for getting emotional, and then I thought, well, that’s stupid.  Cry if you want to.

Today I got up and started to get ready for a weekend at home with my family.  The last three Easters in a row I’ve spent with Robbie, but this one is just not in the cards.  I just pulled down my suitcase to pack (my plane leaves in a few hours; typical) and I realized that I hadn’t unpacked after my last, most disastrous trip there, the trip during which I gave him back my collar.  The suitcase was full of clothes that I’d left at his house for months, and the clothes were full of the smell of him.

Now I’m sitting at my desk with a lapfull of soft black cotton shirts and pants.  They are drenched in his smell.  I want to hug them and hold them until I can turn his smell into solid him.  But I’ve got to go catch that plane.

I’ve got the feeling that it’s a lonely time ahead.

Odysseus and Calypso, by Max Beckmann.