Monday, June 21, 2010

I am loving just being home these days. Even though we hauled out our calendars and made a few plans. Even though the wide world beckons and there are workshops to go to, and places to go and people to see. Even though life is short--no, because life is short, right now I just wanna be with the one I love best, learning to pick out "Summertime" on the piano, reading back issues of The Sun, and Stanley Kunitz and Anne Carson, working on 10-minute plays, watching Netflix movies and making love. The sense of the luxury of time is so amazing.

During the school year we rise and sleep by the alarm clock; it goes off at 6 a.m., and C is out the door before 8. He comes home and crashes down for a nap. We talk, of course, but there isn't enough time for the truly significant conversations. Sensitive topics are generally tabled to await the weekend when there will be time. The weekend arrives and there are errands, I teach a class, we read the paper, and it's over.

Now, in summer, the long gentle balmy evenings stretch out before us. And there's time to read and write and paint and play and stare at the moon and just be. And more and more I just want to be with C which scares the ever-living daylights out of me because I don't believe couples "should" be a world into themselves. I don't believe in putting all my eggs in one basket. What if he dies? He will die, someday--I hope many years from now, but you never know. I still love spending time with my friends. But C is not just my husband he's also a creative collaborator. He's the one I like to talk over new projects with, the one I like to go on nerdly learning dives, googling writers and films and Roman history or some composer or artist and learning everything we can about them.

More and more, we are holding each others' histories. A friend told me it took about five years of being in an intimate relationship to really re-wire one's nervous system and heal old old wounds of disconnection. We're three years in now. I also think that it takes seven years to be truly married. i don't care what the state says or does, what propositions get passed or overturned (although of course I want Prop 8 to be overturned.) But if you ask me the real law of nature is seven years.

I went and saw Giant Bones the other night, directed by my friend Stuart Bousel of No Nude Men theatre. It's based on a book by Peter Beagle. It was a beautiful, entertaining production, done in a small space with a dedicated band of actors playing multiple roles brightly and with total commitment. I particularly appreciated the metaphor of the giant bones themselves, the bones of myth and the old old stories which we artists and humans must digest and make our own in every generation.

I'm loving both classes that I'm teaching through Writing Salon, the personal essay and poetry. Next semester I repeat both of them and add a class in the 10-minute play which should be great fun as well. If anyone is reading this who lives locally, you can sign up at

We saw the movie about Coco Chanel and Igor Stravinsky the other night which was gorgeous to look at and to listen to. I'm not sure exactly what the point of it was, other than creativity and eros, which go hand in hand for me as well, but it was visually sumptuous and striking and made me want to go out and buy a bottle of Chanel Number 5 immediately.


Anonymous said...

you are truly blessed
hope you never forget that
i don't think you will...

Alison said...

most of the time (these days) I remember. Some moments I forget. That's why I write. In order to remind myself.


Anonymous said...

I am somewhere near or in the seven year mark of marriage, and, yes, marriage takes that long.

I worry everyday about how much I love my husband, how exquisite he is, how I turn to him for the best and worst parts of my life.

Everyday I think about the death part. I am learning to accept that I am going to have to cross that bridge when I get to it, but, in the meantime, I am just going to fall so deeply deeply deeply into what it means to be with him.

Otherwise, I would be being half in love. I don't want half, or guarded, or fearful.

I want all of him. And us. No matter the risk. He is such a superb risk.

I love your blog.

Anonymous said...

wish my husband could have stayed with me through
the thick and thin
but he copped out and went off
really, really off

maybe i should view that as a
blessing not a curse,
after all...

Mendana said...

Dear Ali,

Your words ring true for me as well. I just want to spend all my time with my love. We have been married for 9 months now and I can't seem to get enough of being near him. And I worry about that too. For all the reasons you listed here.

I know you are coming up on your first anniversary. Congratulations! May your summer be full of love and celebration of each other!


Shanley said...

I just found your blog, after reading your "What About God" in Sun Magazine. I love your writing. Thanks for this. I've been feeling the need to be home, as well. I've been reading a lot more, writing a lot more - sitting on the couch with a cup of coffee and looking at the lilies in my yard a lot more. There is so much BUSY during school, and I only have one semester left. I feel like this is my last catch up breath before the end, and a new beginning.