Friday, October 22, 2010

Is That Your Feet I Smell?

Have you ever been obsessed with anyone? I’ve been happily married for two decades, but I remember what obsession is like as if it happened only yesterday. I’m lucky because I have a written record in my poetry, and I’m lucky because those who don’t remember history are doomed to repeat it.

In AA we say that the definition of “insanity” is doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results. I’ve been there and done that. In fact, I excelled at doing that. I was willing to do anything that might plug the vast hole in my psyche. And sometimes obsession accomplished that goal. It got my mind off me and centered on you. But in the end I was always stuck with myself again, and I wasn’t red-hot company back then. So the cycle would replay itself, until I finally found myself in an AA meeting where I heard my story told a dozen different ways by a dozen different people, and I discovered that the hole in my psyche could be filled in healthy ways.

I keep this poem around to remind myself what I used to be like. It’s 55 words long, which exactly fulfills the G-Man’s Friday Flash Fiction requirements. Fellow 55ers can be found here.

Woman Tracks Her Runaway Lover

Twilight falls on me
belly to cold ground
nose pressed to the
imprint of your foot
searching for the scent of you.
I am in hot pursuit:
However cold grows your trail
I’ll not abandon it.
I am the shadow
which trails behind.
I shall lay hands on you.


Elisabeth said...

Ah the pain of the 'stalker' the one who cannot let go.

I read the title here and then thought of my smelly feet, one foot at least. I can't wear socks or stockings because they look ridiculous while one leg is swathed in a brace, hence the shoe on my good foot gets worse and worse. Nothing to obsess about, though.

Brian Miller said...

nice...yeah i can feel that desperation...glad that is over...smiles.

TechnoBabe said...

That is really obsession. Great writing. Just scary enough to make it real.

Kim A. said...

As a very troubled and insecure teen I could have played the psycho-girl in Fatal Attraction. I was that obsessive. I have attempted to make amends to someone whose life I made miserable. I hope I get to make those amends one day. Your 55 is true for me in a chilling way. I am glad I have found another way to live. Have an awesome weekend, C.


Beth Niquette said...

Wow! That is a powerful poem! It sounds like something from the movie Twilight.

Dianne said...

Yep been there done that. This reminds me of the first poem that hooked me into writing....Neruda's Love Sonnet XI.
Thank you for posting this, I agree about the hole in the psyche, I think I'll go get the book "the languages of love"

Myrna R. said...

Wow! That says it all. Glad you're not there anymore. But still you had a wonderful way with words even back then.

gautami tripathy said...

I can actually identify with that kind of obssession...

caricatures of vultures

And do get aboard the Poetry Train every Monday
mornings and thereafter!

Monkey Man said...

Yes. Good reminder that creepy stalker person can lie within. Great or old.
My 55 is HERE .

Eric Alder said...

Stalker alert! (LOL!)

A very forthcoming 55.

PattiKen said...

That is a very powerful poem, and described obsession perfectly. I've been there, and without benefit of alcohol. I was delivered my a-ha moment with these words casually used by a woman friend talking about why she was still unmarried at 40:
"No more wounded wings."

G-Man said...

I'm glad that you are over this guy!
History is indeed the best teacher, that is if you were paying attention the first time.
Loved your 55 My dear.
You Rocked this one Baby.
Thanks for playing, and have a Kick Ass Week-End...G

RNSANE said...

I'm glad you could put all that into words, even back then. Maybe you should have been a forensic scientist!! Obsession helps.

Magpie said...

It's good that we keep ourselves aware of where we have been and where we don't want to go again.
Your poem it intense!

Syd said...

I married my obsession and am still here after many years. I guess it worked out okay after all, although we certainly have had our moments.

Totalfeckineejit said...

Your poems are ridiculously good, time after time after time. For once something worth repeating over and over with terrific results every time.

Olivia said...

Very beautiful- the simplicity is the key!!
Thanks for sharing this lovely one.. :)