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Remains of the day

What happens when our lives are not quite what we expected? When the moment arrives that we see not just what we have become but regrettably, we see, with a glaring, growing, discomfort, what we might have been and now most assuredly are not?

What do we do then, when we’ve reached the moment where future intercepts present and past is just that — in the past? Is it better to remember the days of believing, recall that naivete, reach back with a slightly clawing hand toward the effortless sexual, sensual, emotional, inundation of days gone by?

Is there an alternative?

The thing is — you must, whether you want to or not — remember that time when touching the skin along your lover’s back … running your thumb down the back of the one you thought you loved was in itself a kind of worship at the altar of, yes, of course, a kind of eroticism, but more than that, a kind of exclamation of alive-ness, a cri de coeur for feeling, of feeling, of being felt.

Just the thumb. Against the skin. Slowly running with an irresistible pressure, trailing lackadaisically along the spine, and erotically in every other perspective, heading south with no particular hurry. The luxury of time we had in those moments would have made a mockery of the experience — if we’d had had even the slightest inclination of the paucity of time to come.

That thumb. That skin. All that stillness and moving. All without pretense. All without illusion and/or remembrance of other things past. All without a wish desiring to be fulfilled in some future moment 30 seconds or 30 days forward. All done, all felt, all wordlessly acknowledged without an acknowledgment of the hour, or of the lateness of the day.

Just that twilight moment from day to night; when all that existed was that weighty, weightless, dizzily exquisite feeling of someone’s hand moving along your spine and coming to rest on the small of your back. With no word. No comment or question; no expectation of what comes next; no acute awareness of what does not.

Those — and all the other moments of mundane and super-fabulous and silly and sophisticated moments of loving and working and living and breathing without question— are the remains of the day.

And I want them back.

“A butler of any quality must be seen to inhabit his role, utterly and fully; he cannot be seen casting it aside one moment simply to don it again the next as though it were nothing more than a pantomime costume.” from the novel, The Remains of the Day by Kazuo Ishiguro and if you haven’t read it, I can’t imagine what you are waiting for.

Posted on May 31st, 2010Comments RSS Feed
8 Responses to Remains of the day
  1. Thanks JW, as always, for reading.

  2. Great writing as always MC.Welcome back.We were worried about you!

  3. Thanks; appreciate the concern!

  4. Anais Nin, “Look Out”! Mary’s back and in full swing….

    Welcome back M.C. – You’ve certainly been missed.


  5. Oh, thanks Dan for reading and for missing my writing!! 😉

  6. Insomnia for life
    June 1, 2010 at 9:43 pm

    Well it took u long enough to write back!
    I hope it’s a good read
    I will check it out at the library
    what happened to u?
    2 week hiatus
    I almost thought about going to another site.
    But I know how u feel about loyalty and being faithful.
    Welcome Back!!!!!!!

  7. Loyal, faithful Insomniac. Read the book and you’ll learn even more about the vagaries of being loyal and faithful — it’s the entirety of the book I recommended.


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