Scott and I indulged in unintentional mimicry last night. In our pre-parent times, when we lived on an escarpment above Albany, we had a standard date night: chips/salsa at Chili’s, coffee/book-buying at Borders, and then the treacherous winding climb home.
For last night’s date, our plans went awry and before we knew it, we were sitting in Chili’s; a place I love only for salsa. Unable to help it, we gravitated to B&N. The coffee was not wonderful and–ahem–not fairly traded. Like old times, I found myself on the floor passionately gazing at the poetry shelves. I could buy a book. Which one? I chose to pass over my beloveds. I pushed Neruda back in place. I lingered for a moment on Clifton, Sarton, Levertov, and Oliver. Atwood held me for a breathless second. I refused to make eye contact with Rilke–he is too powerful and would overcome my intent for new words. Without looking back, I snatched Anne Carson’s The Beauty of the Husband. Someone new! Would I like her? Would she me? Clutching her in my hands, I sat in the car as we drove in the snow (also a frequent occurence on NY dates). In the warmth of home, I absorbed her words:
Beauty convinces. You know beauty makes sex possible.
Beauty makes sex sex.
You if anyone grasp this–hush, let’s pass
to natural situations.
Other species, which are not poisonous, often have colorations and patterns
similar to poisonous species.
This imitation of a poisonous by a nonpoisonous species is called mimicry.
My husband was no mimic.
Off to a promising start.