about the first time I came to visit her in Santa Monica, about the day we had, the motorcycles to Malibu, the ferris wheel on the S.M pier, the play on the beach, the madcap surfing nightmare the long-lasting drawn-out picture of a mini-tornado measured in hours, exhaustion mirrored only by how much water you could drink. A good day. She drinks her water from a wineglass.
What I remember is the sun melting red-orange into the Pacific, the weather perfect. We had dinner reservations at eight, but I can't shut up.
*Y'see, I have this thing where being tired makes me talk and instead of winding down, I wind up and I blurt, babble, confess anything everything there's really no stopping me.*
Soon, I'm going on about death. I should be in the shower. But death has got me and I'm talking and next its a mix of the West=Death and orphans and thousands drowned in Indonesia and what happens here in the USA when the Atlantic and Pacific decide they just have to meet, imagine the floods, the homes lost, the crops ruined.
Suddenly, Jayne's hand jerks forward and what was a glassful of cold water finds its hurried way onto my face. Her wineglass is empty. I'm dripping from the chin. She's just standing there, sparkling like a lantern in the Serengeti night, she's laughing, her eyes, they "felt the rush of the sap in spring, they knew the wave which cannot halt." (D.H. Lawrence); they seemed to say "This is now. this is fun...moron." Stunned, I blurt out
"You are the hottest one for years of night Henry's dazed eyes have enjoyed, Brilliance." (John Berryman)
The wineglass averts its eyes and mutters something about the formation of an unholy alliance.
Over the years, women have thrown many things in my face, from a pair of tennis shoes to other, often ridiculous, men/women. None of those things taught me to see as much as 6-8 ozs. of California tap water.