The Love Scene


The baby’s mother had an itch the baby couldn’t scratch. I was the person who
knew enough not to comment directly upon this to the baby’s mother. I was the person
who lifted the stroller over the threshold in order to allow the baby’s mother to reinsert
the baby into the stroller. And I was the person who watched this happening to myself.
I believe in the infinite love which can be offered with the help of one’s deepest
beliefs. So far, it hasn’t helped much.

Because we believed the baby would appreciate the experience we would have
there, we took the baby to the movie. Inside the ticket taker’s glass booth, a dog wearing
sunglasses and beads was sitting on the counter. We had been previously introduced to
this animal and he had represented himself as somewhat circumspect and thus we were
now somewhat perplexed by the sunglasses and beads.
We waited in line behind several former ticket takers with their oddly luminous ties
altering from one view to another in a manner that suggested they were on fire. These
former ticket takers had something red and apparently sticky and very like, we could not
help but suspect, blood upon their sneakers, and we suspected this would not become part
of the movie.

The baby started crying. We counted our change and found the wrong arrangement
of symbolic value. Our story appeared not to have been adequately arranged and this
moment appeared to have been a false conclusion. There was definitely something
wrong. The shadows were extending further away from the scene. The baby’s mother was
once more waiting at the threshold, where the baby’s mother scratched the baby tenderly
and the baby stopped crying, whereupon I was painfully successful in stifling my
complicated responses to the mother’s misplaced affection.
This too, of course, was a false conclusion, but this time I was the person who
knew enough not to mention it.

Rich Ives is the author of Tunneling to the Moon: A Psychological Gardener’s Book of Days currently being published in serial @ Silenced Press everyday in 2014 and forthcoming in paperback. Begin from the beginning, catch up, read daily. Just refer to the Burrow Guide.