Before the Kiss

We have a responsibility to hold to the power of love that we know to be true,
and to not allow the world around us to deaden that in ourselves.


So many thoughts this week. And so little time to write.

It’s been a week of un-braiding the aspects of my life – working out the tangles.

The work, the relationships, the writing. And the assumptions, the expectations, and the goals I’ve half-consciously made for myself – and have taken for granted.

I began thinking about Neil’s comments. About his generosity. About his question, ” When did the sense of intimacy become available without any qualification?”

The deep truth here that – this is what we are all longing for, isn’t it? It is encompassed in that moment before a first kiss: the deep inhalation and the diving-in, opening oneself to the messiness and un-staged reality of intimacy. The moment where everything is at stake and you are only in that moment. Listening. Being. Trusting.

Not evaluating. Not judging. Just giving into the moment.

This thing beyond decorum, beyond language – after all what is language but specific decorum? I know when to say “please” &”thank you”, and when to say “fuck”.

But beyond that, under that surface: we are all body, and instincts, and vulnerabilities.

This body is new to me.

Sometimes it is like greeting a former lover who’s been around the world, and come back smelling of strange perfume, touching you with unfamiliar gestures. There’s a slight inflection when she says your name, and you think it might be an affectation. You hope it is an affectation.

“Just knock it off, will you?”

And you wonder if you ever really knew her at all.

This week I’ve been soft with myself. Trying to will the muscles to ease in my neck and upper back. Trying not to berate myself for not having more strength, more resilience – more sense from sensation.

But my hand fell across my stomach last night.
Just as I was falling asleep.
And I thought, “So soft.”

And I exhaled
and I thought, “So beautiful”.
“This thing that moves me through the world.”
“Through this life.”

And there wasn’t a qualification of any kind.

And I wonder if I’ve ever known my own body intimately
before that moment.

One Reply to “Before the Kiss”

  1. pardon what feels my slowness here.

    thank you Ren. I’ve learned an unexpected lesson about myself reading your visceral expressions here. writing is important for me. but what I adore, what I love – is enlivened by this idea – response. for this opportunity you’ve given me – gratitude.

    in that moment Ren, Listening. Being. Trusting.
    a good stance to embody in our lives.

    I may ask pardon using the word “Spirit”, what that means within my experience. (and please, not that insincere, impersonal name of common religious use. I don’t mean that, not at all.) if we allow for a moment that spirit, then what is generosity? what is this existence and life given us?

    how would we want to be ungenerous in response?

    a person I do trust said, to know it at all (existence), you must know it all. pretty tall order you think? I am not that able in my life. but even unrealized that is who I want to be.

    so yea, words are ever approximations for what we really feel, experience and mean. we can only come just this-much-close to connecting with each other. but in working to become that bridge, what more can we want of a child? sweetness is.

    I suppose thoughts are “true” enough. but they are not what animates me.

    so it’s not the words we say, it’s how our intentions harmonize.

    maybe I’ve learned the nature of existence includes both intimacy AND affection. (if you were spirit, how else would you have it be. for real I mean! answer for yourself.) long time I didn’t include affection.

    I was wrong. affection wants to be, to be expressed. yes?

    what your hand discovered of yourself, your belly that night, “So soft.” could I be more in love with this moment you shared! one moment is more than enough for intimacy to land. you had me right there! and even saying “beautiful”, unnecessary ‘cause it is all implied by your intent in seeing and sharing.

    I might wish I lived so well as here all said. I forget a lot. forget and remember and forget again. including as now with some health issues yet my companions. in remembering, I am less the breakable broken thing I’ve called myself of late.

    my body is some broken but my heart is not.

    I am the I of I am. (one of my teacher’s lessons)

    can we ask, when you’re not afraid – what do you run to?

    in gratitude