Three Studies of Love

by sunil on February 24, 2009

Three studies of Love:

Men! Well, they are simple. Their idea of love is a boat set afloat to reach the other side of the river. But women, ah! there, what complicated creatures they can be. They’ll dress themselves in all the sails and float away, without a compass at hand or a port in mind, all by themselves in an ocean of their own. Because,  for a woman love is not a fulfillment, it is a memory of a sensation. It is to sail. It is to hold someone else as precious, to feel the other as a part of herself, to merge the spark of her soul with his.


So it wasn’t surprising that in less than two days of meeting her, I found myself wondering if I was falling in love with her. But then you don’t give yourself away so easily. First I dismissed the idea as a ridiculous fancy; then I said to myself, maybe I just love her but am not in love with her. See, the problem with such thinking is, the more you do it, the more unsure you become. Finally, after three days and two nights of torturing myself with such thoughts I asked her.We were playing our weekly game of squash on the Tuesday when, without taking my eyes off the ball I asked her as casually as I could, if she fancied going out with me on Thursday. She laughed, an accomplished feminine laugh – a wave that starts as jest and ends in wonder. All I remember after that was hitting the ball harder than ever through the rest of the game. But, when we had changed after the game, she held me in her gaze, and informed with a zany smile to pick her up at 7:00 pm on Thursday. So that’s how it was.


Porch light flickers for about half a minute and dies down. I want to replace the bulb but she hollers through the window not to touch it.

“ It’ ll be hot and I don’t want to spend the evening dressing up your hand ”.

I mutely nod.

“Off for a quick shower, shall be back in 10 minutes, don’t bother looking for the bulb in the storeroom. You wouldn’t find it”.

She returns wearing a mauve gown smelling all citrus and tangerine, her hair still wet and dripping. A packaged bulb rests in her hand. I offer to fix it, but she dismisses with a smile.

“First , always read the specifications” she says and reads aloud.

Wattage 100W

Voltage 240V

Cap Description 27mm Edison Screw (ES/E27)

Finish pearl

Length 105mm

Diameter 60mm

She cups the bulb carefully and throws her arms around me, softly whispering into my ear “ Lift”. I lift her and let her twist the Edison screw looser. I guess now even I must be smelling of wet citrus and tangerine. Done she says. I let her slide down. Now , face to face – she pouts a slow thank you.

The wind jingles the charms hanging outside – gently nudging the other to produce a soft clinking rhythm. We hold each other and dance, mirroring each other’s movements, floating away in this imaginary rhythm. The breeze ceases. We don’t hear the music anymore but we continue dancing to our laughter. The music in our hearts.


So after eight days of regular love making, lying in his bed, she asked the question he had anticipated all along , Do You love me?

He had thought about it before; no, not about her but about the question. What does it mean to love someone? And to declare that you love someone? It did not bother him that he could not answer it for himself but that no one seemed to know what they meant when they said it. He thought it was supremely arrogant of someone to announce that they loved another someone. It was at its best a unilateral assumption.

She was waiting, curious about his lengthy silence.He said, yes I do love you. And you know it. But still I am far more careful with you for you to ask it. But now that you have, I don’t think it is going to help me to be any less careful. So I don’t know if that answers your question, may be you can just ignore all of this – you asking the question and my supposed answer as a mindfucking charade of our vanities.

For the lack of better verb, she loved him. She had fallen in love with him for exactly this. His ability to make a misery out of even the most simplest of feelings, to see him reflect on himself as though he was someone else. Okay, sure, I’ll ask tomorrow she said with a smile.


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