They were both waiting for each other, yet not for the same thing; although both assumed they were. He sat quietly on the bench with a friend beside him. He was waiting for her to arrive, flinging his arms out cormorant like and opening out his chakras. If she didn’t come, it wouldn’t matter much for he was one who had the intelligence to know that it meant the time was not right and that it was planned for later. So he was not in a hurry to see her, for how could he hurry the universe?
But she was different, although she also knew that intelligence. But it had deserted her after the argument. When she was coming along the path, she was thinking, I may see him, I know he comes here often, although with hard discipline she had trained herself not to worry or be disappointed if he wasn’t there. All the same she could not prevent herself from looking anxiously for him.
Therefore when they saw each other, it was without surprise. In fact, for him there was barely a reaction, his face was immobile. Yet his eyes were on her. She balked at seeing him with a friend though. Immediately she felt stupid, she was sure she was being analyzed, pitied, and mocked even. The argument had been particularly emotional. She was conscious of talking about her feelings too much. Yes, she was sure he had brought the friend along to take a look at her. Her face broke and she felt the anger she did not want to feel and frightened it would show, she struck out across the marshland. Not as she had intended. She had intended to walk past, head in the air, or just normal, pretending all was well, that she was free of childish passions and in control, she was sophisticated too. But she became aware of her gangly walk, the ridiculousness of her she felt sure they were experiencing. She could not allow for their own thoughts.
He was not showing anything but he registered she had turned away, had decided against walking in front of them. He deflected his concern by turning to talk to his companion, to say something, anything, to cover up that fact he was thinking about what she was doing, to cover up the stomach churning.
There, she thought though. There, he’s talking about me already!
She looked at his face.
He doesn’t care! She continued in her head.
Although there was terror in her heart and it did satisfy her worldview didn’t it?
She wasn’t ready yet. The argument stood between them and she wasn’t ready.
He was just talking to his friend but not listening to the words, he wasn’t aware. Perhaps he talked about the weather or perhaps he spoke about her, he couldn’t remember. But in his head he noted her childish behavior, the stomp of the feet and he did let out a sigh. Confused, he looked back, watching her walk deliberately away now. She glanced at him once more, saw the eyes she loved so dearly and was angry, she kicked a stone wishing he could see it, feel it.
Why was he there, what did he want?
The argument had been so long ago and neither had picked up the phone, yet time meant for nothing and it still stood between them. The friend was his lover she was sure and she was insanely jealous. Childishly jealous and guilty of it. She knew she could be better. That she needed to act better. She needed to have compassion for him but she wasn’t good enough she realized. She had the compassion but she couldn’t access it.
In his head (she fancied) he wanted to see how she was, perhaps if she wasn’t so angry or closed down he might try and speak but she had already judged him in a glance.
Still childish, he thought. Still holding onto things, wanting things I can’t give.
The relatedness was the thing. The fact that they were intuitively there together and knew each would be, was the thing. She knew about that sophistication, she’d known and celebrated it all her life- being by chance in the same places as the beloved, as if moving at the same time, in the same rhythm, such was the awareness of each other. It was powerful. So why was that not enough for her now? Why was she angry? She was base after all.
She’s not ashamed at strutting away until it is too late, until after and she is replaying the embellished scene back in her mind.
He wanted to know if everything was all right, she thought but all she could think about was what he wanted.
He wanted release she realized. Release from me. And no two chances were ever the same and she’d messed up this one. No chances were ever the same and you never knew when your next one was coming along, she thought, so you’d better be prepared, you’d better try and be prepared! Fine words.
She hadn’t prepared enough, she never prepared enough, she just reacted. She wasn’t at his level of accepting and letting go, which was the highest form of love. He was too good for her she realized.