She left notes all over the house. Notes of regret, of recrimination and self-recrimination, of childhood memories.
One by one he found them, and began a deep file into which one day he would look again, only superficially noting her silent reflections on her life and theirs together.
Among these, a list of lovers, going back forty years.
Can I answer her notes to me? Would it make sense? Why didn’t she ask me directly, while alive?
How many of the notes were to me, how many to herself?
I never knew that love would continue to grow when she was no longer here – as some say does hair when we lie there, thoughtless, but thought of by those left behind.
We were lucky to have found each other. We worshiped each the other. Each of us had done things we were not proud of, but in loving each other it seemed that past misdeeds no longer mattered. We were living finally for someone we loved as much as we loved ourselves, if that makes any sense.
This was how I saw it. We were obsessed by the other, almost as though the other was oneself.
Only now do I understand that the above was true only for me. She had always loved like this. What’s more, she never stopped loving any of those she had once loved; whereas when I left a love behind me, for whatever reason, she was behind me, and I no more thought of here as a love, only as a woman on my way to finding this one. The real one, the true love.
Not so for her.
Another excerpt from a collection of files Patrick called Scattered Notes.odt. I remember him telling me this story more than once.
Patrick Meadows 1934 – 2017.