love

Dearest ______,

I am heavily drugged right now, owing to the doctor’s orders for healing the sinuses and the recurring inflamed throat. I’m shivering in bed despite the 32 degrees inside the house and the 168 pollution index outside the window. So drugged; head thinking slow, heart beat doing whole notes every 2 seconds or so, eyes drooping like-

This could very well be how the intoxicated geniuses of the written word felt during their drunken bouts of scribing. Only I am not a genius and the closest likeness I have with those people are these formations of saliva at the corners of my oddly grinning mouth.

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So I’m thinking now:

At some party, you start having this conversation with a new acquaintance about music. He mentions jazz and you don’t hesitate in saying you “love it!”. Then he proceeds to ask you who you particularly love. You feel your tongue getting heavy at this point because you’re drawing a blank. Inside your head Miles Davis is playing Flamenco Sketches from Kind of Blue but you don’t know anything else save for the melodies. You proceed to hum tune after tune to him but no words nor names come out.
“Do I really love jazz that much?”, you ask yourself.

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Love is such a strong word that it has gradually replaced all sorts of nouns, verbs, and even adjectives (“This dress is love.”) in our daily, mundane conversations. It gets thrown around quite easily these days that poor Shakespeare might be rolling in his grave at the thought of “love”- the grand and lofty ideal that his protagonists have literally, painfully died for- having been reduced to idealizing cookie butter or some other trivial novelty on the Internet.

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And yet here I am, none the better.
I always sign these letters with “Love” because “Sincerely” or “Yours truly” just won’t cut it. And while we might not know each other; while there is nothing monumental about these words, there is a lonely jazz chord inside my ribcage. It swells at the thought that all kinds of people can be loved, even from afar.

Love,

Karlita

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Phone images from Mother and text by Author. All rights reserved.

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