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Soothing the Bear

At the risk of jinxing what I have, I do solemnly declare that I love being married.

This is not a new marriage. It will be 21 years next month.

Naturally, my pleasure in it has everything to do with who I'm married to, but also, I suspect, with the paradox of feeling utterly free within a construct. Poets who write in forms know what I'm talking about, as do those who follow the forms of an organized religion. In The Philosopher's Diet: How to Lose Weight and Change the World, which is both a good diet and good philosophy, author Richard A. Watson talks about the efficacy of living within the demands of some kind of form. I rate myself a notorious resister of forms, being an almost-prose poet, a disorganized agnostic, and an abandoner of diets, but somehow the form of marriage agrees with me.

Earlier in the week, when I was feeling quite foul, Don made me laugh as only he can. ("No, he's Fawlty." "Faulty? What's wrong with him?")

Yesterday, when he was feeling, in his words, "like a bear" (and growling like one, too) I eased his day by receiving it, as is our married-folk custom. In the construct we've built, "Tell me about your day," isn't small talk. For both of us, it's "How do I know what I think until I hear what I've said?" It's the Weltys' whistling duet, up and down the stairs, that ties the different refrains of our days together.

(An online notebook is a kind of form, too. But that's a different story....)

May 15, 2003 in dailiness | Permalink


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