Negative Entropy Blues
She shares my values and like me, believes they have to be lived, not merely held, and live them she does, from the smallest aspect of her quotidiani (perhaps a neologism or merely cultural borrowing from the Italians) to her highest aspirations. Despite needing help herself and having lived a life no stranger to deprivation, she is a magnet to those in need, and it is my privilege to be here to help her in her own need.
It’s certainly not love I feel in any romantic sense, that delightfully egotistical slant on the emotions that word represents, although apparently she does and is prepared to grant me anything I want. It’s a mixture of respect and admiration for her character devoid of sexual overtones, more’s the pity, I miss that. But it’s been enough to bind me to her and that makes me feel somewhat better about who I am, even in the midst of the frustration the missing parts of our relationship engenders.
She is a test as to who I am, how true a person I am, whether I really can and do put others interest above my own, at least when the price is not too dear. But I feel the pull of old desires, physical and emotional, of wanting to be so entranced by someone that my cognitive processes seem stalled and I wonder just how long they’ll be forestalled, I wonder if I’ll hold out long enough to give her the strengths she needs to be the whole and confident person she should be.
If I believed in an anthropomorphic god that expected this from me things would be so much easier, but I don’t. If divinity exists, I believe it’s an impersonal, totally self-centered force, knowing not good from evil, perpetually experimenting as though afflicted with attention deficit disorder, as much concerned for me as I am for the cells in my toe nails, and not really caring all that specifically what I do, unless I somehow cause it a reaction making it feel pain. Perhaps that latter phenomena is what we refer to as successful prayer.
So, … I’m left to my own evolving ethics, my own sense of morality, and a deep rooted desire to avoid hypocrisy, at least when it seems that I can. But just what does that mean in this world of such confused values. Where evil always seems ascendant but where good somehow survives, if only as an ideal, an aspiration. As a young teenager watching someone the media had dubbed heroic culminate the heights of public life, I remember asking myself when and how he’d be corrupted. A cynic even then. And I remember asking when and how the same would happen to me.
Like Iulius Caesar, I respect the Goddess Fortuna. One of the songs that most impacted my life was the Joan Baez version of “There but for Fortune”, and the impact has been both brutal and tender, it’s made me insecure and sometimes unselfish because of that insecurity, knowing that I could easily have been or someday might find myself amidst the misery that I see surrounding me. And when I do something noble for someone in need, in the back of my mind rests the hope that in my time of need, or in that of my children, someone will be there doing something similar for us, a hope that when put to the test has almost always proved hopeless, but fortunately, perhaps hope does in fact spring eternal.
So, … returning to the beginning of this introspection, I wonder if it’s right to share so much with someone who deserves the best but doesn’t generate the feelings our current culture tells are required for the binding of kindred souls. Is it a form of deceit rather than something decent? Does the honest refusal to acknowledge permanence as a basis for the relationship bridge that gap. What does one do when one desperately wants to do what’s right but can’t perceive what that entails?
What to do, what to do, what to do, when suffering from the negative entropy blues?
© Guillermo Calvo Mahé; Manizales, 2016; all rights reserved