When I was in college, I had a year-long romance with one of my writing professors. He was a sweet man, with blue eyes and dark, curly hair. We'd clicked.

He had just gotten divorced from his wife of twenty-plus years. The divorce had been quite friendly. The two of them still shared studio space (she was a painter) in Somerville. We, he and I and she and her new boyfriend, even spent a weekend in Maine together. Their kids, both older than me, had been there and everything had been very well-adjusted and nice.

I told him during that weekend in Maine that his stories of Audre Lorde in New York in the '70s were what made me want to sleep with him. He'd laughed and said, "If you liked that, what do I get for Cheever and Carver at Iowa?"

After several months, it was apparent that he was still in love with his wife. I finally said this to him after we'd been to dinner with her following a gallery show for one of her friends. I told him he should try to work it out with her.

We were at his house in Brookline, sitting on the back porch. I liked him a lot, but I didn't love him and he and his wife were so wonderful together that it was painful to see them apart. He said he didn't think she wanted that. I told him he was wrong.

We spent our last night together in his bed. In the morning, when I descended the stairs to the kitchen, he'd made breakfast and placed a wrapped package on my plate. It was a signed copy of Between Our Selves by Audre Lorde. It was one of the most meaningful gifts I've ever received.

I went looking for that book today and found that I've lost it. Like so many things, I don't know how long it's been gone - like the sparkly butterfly barrette my grandmother gave me not long before she died; like the set of calligraphy brushes a boy with a crush brought me from Japan; like the picture-record of Lady and the Tramp I got for my 24th birthday from a man I loved who knew what it meant to me.

For a while I was sad about having lost something that was once so meaningful.


Yolk E said...

"I found I'd lost it." beautiful.

Your post resonates with me... that's quite a story, and I've got one or two like that I'd love to share. For now, I'll continue blogging about yoga ;-)

Dorothy said...

Yoga is a great thing to blog about. And the great thing about blogs is that they can be whatever you want them to be. If the day comes that you want to share other things, I think all of us will be happy to read that, too!

hannahjustbreathe said...

Wow... This was beautiful, sad, bittersweet.

I think I have lost as much as I have found in these last few years.

Dorothy said...

Yes. I, too have found much - much more than I've really lost - in my life. So it makes sense I need to lose stuff bow and then to make room! ^__^

bikramyogachick said...

wow. That is so poignant. I can picture it.....you are a very talented writer.....

Dorothy said...

Hey, thanks, Michelle!