Prologue: Two months ago, when “writersplace.net”, our authors web site began looking for the three most popular, most widely followed commercially unpublished poets, Barbara’s name came up and the three were invited to a poetry competition in Chicago.
Poetry with permission of Elizabeth J. Russo
A Three Day Liftime, Part Two
Friday, June 18, 2009
Thoughts swirling through my mind as the plane headed easterly.
Stuck in a crack, my life was fluttering away and all I do is sit.
Yes, I do love Helen... maybe. I’m not sure anymore.
Eight years is a long time to live next door to a woman you love knowing she is living with her – even though he is no longer the man she knew – Helen is still living with, who at one time was her boyfriend, literally.... literally cleaning his shit.
In eight years we’ve only been able to get away for a weekend twice, and in all this time we’ve spent a full night together only six or seven times, including the two weekends and these few times only because the drunk had been hospitalized.
Yet she loves me!
Yet together we can both spend the rest of our lives financially secure, living exactly where we wish to live.
But how much longer is the drunk, and Helen’s obligation going to go on?
I only have, hopefully, another fifteen good years left to my life and how much longer do I wait to live spontaneously? To say, “Helen, let’s take the dogs and head to Cambria this weekend.” Or to San Diego? Or to be able to spend “personal time;” to make love without having to plan the hour we spend together sometime later in the week, or the next week, or the week after?
How much longer do I have to be able to live spontaneously?
And guilt about Barbara? No, I am not going to feel guilty about Barbara.
I need Barbara in my life now... if only for a weekend... If only to know that I am still a man that can act spontaneously. That can, God willing, still make love spontaneously... Spontaneously, that is, with a little help from Pfizer.
And Barbara, and the excitement she’s brought into my life, taking me out of the crack. Bringing feelings and thoughts back to me that I haven’t felt or thought for years. And being in love with a woman I’ve never actually met! Being in love with a woman and not even knowing what she looks like!
Feeling excitement! Feeling love! Feeling wanted by a new woman!
Also... Feeling anxiety because if – God willing – we are naked together, from my neck up, for my age I’m okay, good in fact, although the flesh beneath my chin could use some tightening and I’m good from my waist down, although – even after loosing ten pounds – two or three inches less around would be nice, and, with the help of my little pills – this truly a “man” thing – I should have no problem with the sight of, or use of my dick. From my neck down and my waist up however, really, Arnold Schwarzenegger I’m not. But in the immortal words of Popeye the Sailor Man: “I yam what I yam!”
However... Thoughts swirling, swirling:
Did I possibly misread all the signals I thought she sent?
When Barbara sees me in person will she be disappointed?
When Barbara sees me for the first time is she going to think this is a mistake?
When Barbara sees me for the first time is she going to think, “He’s an old man?”
Emails aside, does Barbara truly, really think of us as platonic?
When people see us together are they going to think I’m her father?
Do I tell her I love her?
Do I pretend to be platonic?
What do I do when I meet her? Do I take her hand? Do I kiss her? Do I even touch her?
Oh, my GOD!
Looking up, I see the “Fasten seat belt” sign had gone on.
Looking through the rain streaked window, the sky was heavily overcast and though the plane was descending, I could see nothing but gray below.
Wanting to appear a bit more youthful, but not wanting to appear as though I was trying to appear youthful, wearing pressed jeans, a designer label chambray shirt and a dark blue, lightweight cashmere sport jacket, my one overloaded suitcase, that I’d been able to shove in the overhead compartment in hand, not knowing what to expect, and in either case having not the slightest idea how to react, walking down the slight ramp into the crowded “Arrivals” area...
Standing a few moments, looking about a few moments..
Looking in my direction, our eyes touching...
Wearing light blue slacks and a dark blue jacket, maybe 5’ 2” or 5’ 3”, approaching me, the heavy-set woman has short cut, dark brown hair and, coming closer, I see brown eyes and a pretty face, but she is too young to be my Barbara, but she’s smiling at me and before I can look over my shoulder to see if the smile is for me or someone else, for someone behind me...
Without hesitation, the woman’s arms are about my neck and her mouth is on my mouth and the kiss I am receiving is the kiss of long lost lovers and, leaning into the kiss, the suitcase dropped, my arms now about the juncture of her well defined waist, feeling the press of her ample breasts upon my chest, tasting the fresh taste of her mouth, my tongue touching her tongue, standing in the midst of the crowded “United Airlines Arrival Terminal” kissing this woman held tightly in my arms... Fuck ‘em if they think I’m her father! Barbara! I don’t want to let go of my Barbara.
Standing back now, looking at me, “Mitchie...”
Standing back now, looking at her, “Mitchie?” I asked quizzically, “Who’s Mitchie?”
Her mouth opening in surprise, her hand going to cover it, but seeing my smile she smiled back...
Barbara smiled and my heart melted.
Straight, dark brown hair brushed back partially covering her ears. Minimal eye liner highlighting beautiful, almond shaped eyes. Her face absolutely wrinkle free – which could be the reason I thought her too young – with but a bit of “blush,” Barbara’s complexion is flawless. A straight nose perfectly suited to her face, Barbara’s lips, Oh, God!
Holding her face in my hands, looking at her, studying the face I’ve seen only in my imagination. Liking... loving the face I hold in my hands, “Hi, honey, yourself,” I said, fighting the urge to kiss her again. “I thought you said you were shy.”
“Yeah, I am,” she answered, “but I’ve been waiting months to do that.”
So much for getting “wrong signals”. Looking about, “Think we better get out of here?”
Taking my hand, “Yes, lets. But we’ve got to get my case.”
Walking to the United Luggage carrousel, “Why don’t you cancel your room? As long as they’re paying for mine,” Barbara said brazenly, “we might as well both use it.”
Looking at her, my heart jumping, “You really want me to?”
“Do I really want you to? Oh, yeah,” she said emphatically, “I want us to have every minute we can.”
Oh, God! Thank you, God! “Thanks, honey, me, too!” I said just as emphatically. “Check in time’s not till four,” but reluctant to release the small hand, that fit so nicely... that seemingly fit perfectly within my hand, “I’ll call to cancel while you’re finding your bag, and I’ve got to use a washroom.”
Tightening her fingers, “Don’t be too long,” she said, pulling me closer, kissing me lightly.
I didn’t really need the bathroom but the real reason; putting my case onto a sink, opening it, then my shaving kit that, due to the inspection at “check in” was sitting on top. I removed the small “Kaiser” pill bottle and, shaking one of the little, almond colored pills into my palm – you know, the pill that says: “If you have an erection lasting more than four hours contact your doctor.” Which I always thought of as the masterpiece of all advertising ploys.
©May 18, 2010 / Mark M Lichterman