Telling me what I want to hear

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I want to know where you go because you want to tell me that story and want to share inspiration.  I want to be the person you confess to with confidence in my care of your mess.

I want to know whom you met today because I want to be able to give you the nuggets of conversations from my  day,  from my aha moments and observations- many made about you being amazing and this person was well, merely likeable.

I want to know why you went where you did because I let myself go where I go and you should know what led me down that curious path and whether I’d walk it again- and whether I’d walk alone or bring you with me, to hold my hand, to stand in another spot on the map of reference I carry in my head.

I don’t test you to see if you are where you say you are.  I don’t make you share your day. I don’t check up on you. I want to give you privacy because I believe we all need a life of our own. But when you are ready to share, know I will have already shared mine, blurted out my little existence in snippets, given you my moments because I want to pull you into my life without reservation or censorship of how naive and limited I am from a stifled coming of age.

You live a big life. I live a big life.  And together why not meld these lives and build a third shared experience that inspires blinding passion from putting them together?

There’s comfort in the exchange of a day,  and while I’m running my fingers around yours, and up and down the lean lines of your forearm,  over the bend of your elbow where that divet holds a sensual space just under your bicep where I press and pause and press  and pause, while I lie next to you, my thigh draped over yours, chin nestled in the curve of your shoulder. I’m tracing the tatt on your tricep, ink which will someday be a sleeve with the story of your life, and the colors of our life.

I believe in this telling-time,  this pouring out of innocent awe, this is where we find our adventures complement and combine. We surprise ourselves again and again. We put images and memories in our heads to create the stamina for stories that we will want to hear for another 50 years, well into those longer days when we are on the front porch, rocking in our chairs, talking, re-telling, laughing, still holding hands.

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Give me your life- not in the golden band on the right left hand this time- but your mind’s life, the one that spins up there in that creative space where you reveal your naked self to my soul and I cradle your words and dreams with trust and fearless belief in your integrity and we honor each other in the safe keeping of hearts. 

#for rEticent mental property. Images courtesy of the web. September 24, 2017, the day the NFL stood up to #45 and locked arms in solidarity to support those who chose to stand Or take a knee without worry of repercussion.

 

 

 

 

Opening lines

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On Thursdays I pick up my farm share. It’s a box of locally grown organic produce sown, grown, harvested and delivered to a nearby locale for pick up by moi. I’ve chosen the  farmer from his seasonal crop planning and self-marketing session held each year at my favorite coffee shop.

Community Supported Agriculture (a CSA) connects farmers with buyers and opens a connection between buyer and seller that lends itself well to learning about everything from where food comes from, to identifying 7 kinds of lettuce, to cooking fresh with seasonal ingredients. For about $25 dollars a week, paid in advance, my farmer gets to do his thing and in the spring, I get to eat the fruits of his labor.

I used to pick up my CSA share from a garage. The door was opened to the public at about 2pm. The owner wasn’t home. CSA purchasers show up, unload the crate into environmentally friendly canvas bags,  or plastic, I have to admit when I’m just not on top of my schedule and forget entirely and have to show up before that garage door closes and use whatever I can find in my car to carry my vegetables home.

This year I live in a new neighborhood. I chose a new CSA that delivers to the local speakeasy a few doors down. To save a few bucks I split my CSA with a good friend and that means on delivery day I need to go into the establishment with two canvas (not plastic) bags and divvy up the goods. I’ve become something of a spectacle. I hope an anticipated and engaging spectacle, but I don’t get to determine what others think of me. I just have to be me. And hope they are laughing with me (not at me) (as the saying goes).

I arrive at the beginning of happy hour. Good timing, right? I know.  By now the bartender knows my name which is kind of ironic given it is a speakeasy so true anonymity would probably be best but this isn’t the 1920’s (as much as I’d like it to be.) And what does it matter that I’m unknown. I’m certainly not unnoticed. And neither are the Thursday happy -hour regulars who are at the rail every. single. week.  Jeff arrives on the dot of Four. He sits down. Orders a rum and coke. Peruses the menu, waits for his wife to show up at about 4:30 after she gets home from her job. When I come in, Jeff is sitting there, sipping, and serves as the buffer between paying patrons and the people who come in for vegetables but not corn based beverages.

Jeff makes small talk until the bartender is free. Last week that bartender was Kevin, he shared hints about the upcoming fall menu and a quest to brand the speakeasy as a spot for a variety of classic Old-Fashioneds. And he’s serious- he intends to serve the classic midwest Old Fashioned involving real cherries and pickled mushrooms. I’m liking this guy.  I’m not sure a speakeasy is known for brandy old-fashioners…I envision Gin Rickey’s  but I’m open to ideas. Kevin has them. He’s done this before. He knows what he’s doing. I think. He thinks. Does it matter? Kevin is telling me why he wants me to keep stopping in, why he wants me to bring my friends, why he wants me to talk about what they have going on there OUTSIDE of the bag of veggies sitting on his bar.

Holly is the waitress who has the gift of gab and can upsell a plate of steamed garlic infused kale as easily as a free refill on one of those Old Fashioned Kevin is pushing. Holly takes a peek into the canvas bag of veggies and admires the size of my zucchini. I smile and bob my head, no innuendo is lost on her. We grin together and stop ourselves from stroking the firm, dark, round eggplants.  She chides me for not stopping in for dinner and I promise to make the trek with my family if I can talk them out of being digital screen time addicts. I have teenagers. That’s another story.

Behind the bar is Devan. She’s new to this spot but cut her bartending teeth on a spot up the road at a cajun flavored NOLA themed restaurant and bar run by the same chef as here.  She knows the menu, likes good crab cake, is sad that the perch has been traded out for (sigh) cod and admires the bacon mac and cheese. Down the rail, the rest of the happy people spending an hour at the veggie pick up spot slash bar, all start nodding and spouting accolades related to crisp bacon and Wisconsin cheese. Devan and I get into a bit of a shared kumbaya moment recalling the power of last week’s viewing of the eclipse and she wants to show me her pics which she captured with the help of an infrared lens app that she used with her iPhone. I’m not sure if the latter actually exists but there’s no way to prove it as her phone is dead and is sitting behind the bar holding the proof of her conquest.

Paul wanders in and I politely move one of the divvied up bags of veggies so he can sit down to my right. He has his Packer jersey on and is staying for the game.  He asks why I’m sitting there having a drink with a bag of gorgeous red onions, leeks and some sort of jalapeño pepper medley? I’m hot, I say, and they get along with me.

I take another sip of my chocolate lab porter, brewed by Wisconsin Brewing Company, just a few miles to the west and settle in for a little back and forth with whomever might take the seat to my left.

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I’m not looking for anything. I do, however, love to connect up. It’s not the same as a hook up. It’s actually, totally different. And I’m okay with that. 

 

#for Reticent Mental Property. Images courtesy of the web.

 

 

 

 

Chaser

It’s nine o’clock on a Saturday. The little place in the country, the one still standing despite years of bands and hardwood dance floor abuse from men dancing with men, twirling actually with drunk men, completely heterosexual mind you, but just wildly letting themselves feel the base and spin at the same pace as the brain after a few hours of brandy old fashioneds downed between sets.

There’s a steady stream of locals and newbies, and very little reinvestment into the place as evidenced by the one stall bathroom and the lack of a decent top rail scotch. Still, it’s a good place for dancing and a great place for not having to talk due to the volume and a spot with a $5 cover is frankly, hard as fuck to come by these days.

Linda, she’s a blonde with a history that she can’t defend but recognizes that she’s not perfect either and she brings along the latest add to her crowd. She loves to dress up, has on a spaghetti strapped sequined black top and her best elastic fabric white jeans and at my request, strappy sandals that just barely emerged from the car before removing the toe spacers they supply at the local nail salon. She is so grateful she noticed and pulled the from her toes before she walked up to pay her $5 cover.

I’m behind Linda. I’ve got a grey leather jacket without a wallet. i need to exit and return with my id and my cash. I do so. I pay my way in, walk to the bar and order a blueberry vodka press for my friend and a corona with lime for myself.  $14 later plus a goddamn tip and I’m across the room waiting for a chance to dance.

Linda is the dancing kind. She knows the words. She knows the breaks and when to stop dancing. She knows the songs, and has a reference due to her good friend’s escapades in the past, she knows he will stop being a coherent fun tag-along, she knows she’ll have to babysit the drunken fucktard until she acknowledges she does dance, does it well, and does not need to make anyone happy.

Yes. She has to buy her own drinks. But it is worth it. No putting out for guilt. Instead, she puts out that she is turned on and capable of bringing the same. 

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# for Reticent Mental Property. Images courtesy of the web.

 

Can’t settle in

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Let’s not confuse settling down with settling in. One is an end, the other a beginning. There’s an implied discomfort with settling down, at least for me there is, an implied restricted constriction of blood that flows to the important parts. A little PTSD, trauma induced by expectations labeled security, marriage and tradition.

Let’s look at settling in.

It’s that shimmy of the hips when you are in bed with someone who spoons with you…the movement that can mean a comfort arranging snuggle position or an invitation to full on, full-bloomed love making frenzy…a snuggle that lead to the latter if you are settled in.

It’s that time when you leave the door open, relieve yourself, wipe and wash hands and don’t close the door. That’s settled in. NO. IT’s NOT. Don’t fool yourself.

Settling in is when you move in syncopated harmony in a two-ass kitchen. You know, the tiny kitchen that you have in your first place where there is really  not room for two chefs but it is so romantic to cook together, to cut the onions because they make her cry or simply because you have to have them cut  in a certain way and you know she’ll just butcher them and then your mouth will have to feel small onions and big onions and it will mess with your tastebuds and your whole fucking experience of shared kitchen tasks.

Oh, that settling in…it’s when you make a plan for an 9am yoga practice followed by coffee and you find yourself awake at 6am and fully aware that you have to either roll over and wake him up from a soft, flaccid, non-wet dream moment and make him grow in your mouth and create a major bed-shaking all out crazy morning of love-making where the sheets slide off the end of the bed, the pillows get jammed between the mattress and the headboard and when your alarm goes off at 8 you hit the dismiss so fast that the yoga instructor knows you are not showing up today because you are getting your downward dog on and do.not.need.an.instructor.

That’s settling in.

She figured that settling down was overrated, oddly, she still found herself aiming for it. WTH?

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#for Reticent Mental Property. Images courtesy of the web.

 

 

 

Fledgling

 

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There’s a man at a desk, clears it at five, imagines the after-work nest.

There’s a man at the rail, nods with a sigh, sends over a drink for the lady.

So many are waiting, inhaling the chance to breathe air with another,

to roll over and see someone in the light of the morning,

to reach toward,

to tenderly touch the bone of her chin, the line of her nose,

to know if she is what he calls his

to see if she feels like a tomorrow under his steady gaze.

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Settle in darling, he says, his elbow anchors her hip, his arm climbs her frame with wrist securely tucked in soothing fashion to hold her in the fold of his protective wing. 

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#for Reticent Mental Property. Sept 26, 2016. 

A Physical Presence

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Criss-crossed, my legs are in your heat, tucked under the rail. The tan purse from my shoulder rests under my elbow – the one you knew to look for upon my arrival. Your face is not turned toward me and I like the casual stance you are trying to take. There’s a busy bartender pulling the tap and trying to make conversation but she’s not listening to our answers and we don’t hear her questions.

You set the popcorn between us, don’t mind if my hand dips in the bowl when yours does. I wait and take a few kernels, you do the same. There’s a bit of the white that falls to the bar and you swipe it to the floor with the side of  your hand. Somehow a salty small piece takes to the corner of my mouth and you think nothing of reaching and holding my jaw -fingers open to the flesh under my chin – as you use your thumb to flick it off a ribbon of lips.

A bit distracted by your forwardness, I put on a smile and brush the same place with my fingertips. I grin with a bit of discomfort that I find I have but don’t hold long when I’m with you. We talk about golf- you don’t play anymore. We talk about your place and the storms of last night. We check up on the children we both raise, keep raising. We talk about nothing but manage to lean into each other, frequently, shoulder to shoulder a little shrug of acknowledgement of the ease of sharing our worlds.

It’s time to go.

I check my phone and reach out to shake hands, palm to palm, a solid touch, firm and strong no matter the heated tone of the conversations we end.

We used to kiss goodbye.

I look into your eyes and find your gaze, hold on to your attention longer than your hand.

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Cheers to happy hour and good listens. Cheers to verbal battles and the chemistry of banter.

#for Reticent Mental Property. Images courtesy of the web.

 

Overused

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Life finds us pulled in opposite directions.

When I wake up it is a new day, but I’m still trying to pull back the weekend’s sunrises.

Monday’s sun shines in the window, finds my face, slowly brings me to waking and with eyes open, the pillow cradles this mind for longer than it should, while my heart gets a grasp on our priorities.

It is another day of away. Repasser.

I climb from the bed, stretch my hand to my drawer where I pull the phone from its wired recharge, fumble the password, twice, and look for the little blue envelope telling me your words are waiting- slumbering and still sleeping maybe- but here, nested in the palm of my hand.

You are my peace.
You are my tranquil.
We find a center, a balance.
Slide over and wrap that leg over me.
Place your ear on my shoulder close enough to hear my heart beating as yours.
Palm my rib, stroke my chest, cup me,
Breathe me in.

There are so many ways to express the connection, yet repeated I love yous are both inadequate and necessary food for a lover’s daily consumption.

In my stubborn grasp lies wait the possibilities I choose to crave.  I know better than to selfishly cross boundaries but I allow it, this time, because I simply cannot deny myself your beautiful heart.  I love you is nearly enough, but not. We are worth more.

You are here, slide over.

Groggy good mornings whispered hot on my neck before the rising

Just wanted to share this bite of blueberry pie with you

Lie back

Hold my hand in yours, like we do

I want your voice

I want a time when I don’t have to miss you

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One day at a time is the plan. She pulls his Saturday shirt from the drawer, pulls it over her head drinking in his scent. Thumbs to her waistline, she drops Monday’s panties to her ankles. In one practiced movement she kicks them up to her fingers and slips them under his pillow for Tuesday’s return.  

#for Reticent Mental Property. Images courtesy of the web.