Sweet and Trifling

I want to purge these words from me so they can exist somewhere concrete, out in the Universe, instead of eating away at the corner of my mind when it gets dark and everyone else goes home with whoever they’re loving or fucking or both if they’re lucky. But it’s almost summer now, so the season of long drives and breathlessly exciting encounters and sweaty sheets and sleepless nights has officially started.  In short, I can no longer distract myself from your absence; the world is permeated with memory.

You were my friend. There were others before, and will be others after. If ever I get that close to another, they will know the parts of you that are left inside of me. You have been my reflection, borne witness to me, helped me gauge my own growth in my long and convoluted life.

And now nothing. We felt no more fireworks when we kissed. I slammed the door on the compassion. I cried, sickened with myself for trying to ignore my temporary existence in your life. You pulled away, confused.  Weren’t we supposed to be experiences for each other? Not love, not human beings for fucks sake. The real Us is socially unacceptable. We were emotional blow-up dolls, for satisfaction without complications, a shell to project all of our expectations on to, a body for the person we had each created in our heads. I couldn’t fuck you like I meant it anymore. You noticed. You left.

I am lost. I am not sad and I am not afraid. But something has died. I do not like the things that remind me of you. I hate to see red cars, bright stars, the smell of a wet dog, and the things I think you might like. I hate myself for not loving you enough. You did nothing wrong, except act your age. Even at the end, when our hearts were so twisted up we were spitting words unrecognizable to each other, even then you were too good to say what we were both thinking- that I did not love you well enough. And you’re right. Because the kind of love I found I had for you, the one that remakes your soul into something better, and forces you to recognize and honor the humanity in another person- that kind of love wasn’t what I was looking for.  A decent person to talk and fuck and let me stay closed up until I learn how not to be so vulnerable – that’s what we both wanted. Maybe I’ll go for the cheap ones now. The guys with square jaws and big arms and small brains. They haven’t read any philosophy, or possess the gift of playful banter, or looked me in the eyes and focused on my soul. I will not be doing Us justice. I am taking the easy way.

Cupid made me sick to my stomach when I did a search, put in my shallow criteria and it came up with you at the top of my list.  95%, Clamdever, braggart of blarney, fuck me, was it only 5% that did us in? My heart beat so hard and my skin crawled cold on me when I read all the things you wanted that I never gave to you. I look at your pictures now to remind myself how young you are. You won’t understand this. You can’t. You don’t yet know the difference between first love and living-sedulous-sapient-love, between obsession and attachment sānctitās.

I knew the things about me that you would never accept. You told me in quite ways. And now, I just want to be alone. This kind of love is why half the world walks around heartbroken, glazed over, given up. There is nothing else in my life that is wrong, sad or without hope, except for this. I’ll wake up and make tea and read books and laugh with my friends and cry at night. This is the empty existence.


Bailey’s banana trifles

(sweet and trifling, like love sometimes)

Serves 6

  • pot extra-thick double cream
  • 7 tbsp Baileys
  • 6 chocolate brownies (about 250g/9oz), broken up, or use crumbled chocolate biscuits or loaf cake
  • 3 bananas , sliced
  • pot vanilla custard
  • 6 tbsp toffee sauce
  • 1 oz chocolate , grated
  1. Mix the cream with 1 tbsp Baileys, and set aside. Divide the brownie pieces between 6 glasses, then drizzle each with 1 tbsp Baileys. Top with the sliced bananas, custard and Baileys cream, dividing equally, then drizzle with toffee sauce and finish with grated chocolate. Can be made a few hours ahead.

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