The specter of some darling child was always blocking the bridge between our futures. Evident now, but the moment itself is rarely clear.
No: the moment itself was many other things. The fog of your dark cologne creeping over my brain every evening; our laughter ringing as (more)I chased you down a Parisian street; the waft of le chocolat chaud from Angelica's rising like a force field between us and the rain-battered window; the sharp intake of breath and my eyes rolling back in my head, I forgot everything else, a hit better than any drug I ever tried.
We floated through the year like a pair of swans touching beaks, simple and sure. I danced at your shows. You proofread my articles. I wrote you horrible (but sincere) poems. You painted me pictures.
One Saturday as we strolled through Les Jardines du Luxembourg I was brought up short by the way you beamed at children playing on a swingset. It was the same air you got after one of your guitar improvisations blossomed into magic: you looked joyful, pure, a light-filled vessel. I caught your sleeve.
"Julien," I said. "Do you want children?"
"Of course!" you said instantly.
We spent the next two years creating a tempest of our lives, attempting to break up. We tried on compromises. None fit. Two things I knew at the core of my being:
-I loved you fiercely.
-I could never deprive you of fatherhood.
The day I was accepted into the PhD program in New York I disappeared, changed my phone number and email. It was the only way.
I pick up the phone, dial your number. I put the phone back down. Maybe I'll call you in another three years. Maybe your darling child will answer.
"Can you play me a song? Its my birthday!"
"Sure, whats your name doll?"
No way, your names not Darling Bell--
It is! I'll prove it.
(more) Well, your name is Darling Bell, but its not your birthday.(less)