Is this love | By Writer in Residence Claudia La Rocco Jun 7, 2016

by Claudia La Rocco

Is this what ____ is, she wondered, this always waiting and never being able to read the instructions. The lights always stay on for too long, go down too quickly. The people do inscrutable things. Is this love is this love is this love she chants to herself, counting the words out on her fingers and stopping when she gets to the pinky on the right word. The hip of the woman next to her is oozing into her own hip. When she twisted her neck down and to the left, it satisfied her with an ominous cracking jolt, something felt more than heard. She couldn’t stay in the past or the present tense. The blond woman kicks the foreign-looking man off the plane, again and again, only with the right wrong words; she is tanned, toned, he is neither. I wanted to love you she tries but it’s no good it already has five words. No possibility of traveling. Now the woman and the man are naked and what they are doing to each other should be sexual but it’s not and her brain goes in circles and circles and circles. People like seeing the process doesn’t work either. She has her morning coffee with heavy cream, and stands over the succulents. The idea of the art world stopped seeming like a good idea. Don’t overreach. A global idea. How to come to grips with mortality and still have faith. Everything about the world is hard right now. She makes her neck do the thing again. She made. The wind whistling around the dark tower at night was the most beautiful thing. If you open yourself up to possibility. If you if you if you. Fidelity to a ritual. This is a simple thing, she thinks. Walk out into the dark evening unfurling before you after intermission and the theater all lit up like a globe and just keep walking and walking and walking and the woman and the man will continue to be naked, and to do the things to each other that should be sexual but are not, and the memory of this thing you have seen and/or are about to see will stay with you forever, seeping into the very rooms from which you would like to keep it. And this is the way it works and the way it doesn’t. Is this love is this love is this love.


OtB Writer in Residence Claudia La Rocco  | READ MORE