It is an unusual pleasure to be asked to officiate a wedding. And each time, I find myself, as I prepare, wondering what it is that I have to say about love. What do I know about love? What the fuck do I know?
I know that the uncertainty is my favorite part. That love feels to me like endless potential. We might be anything. To one another. For ourselves. We might be anything.
When I was small, someone told me love is a lit candle that you guard against the elements. Maybe sometimes it is that quiet, but for me it’s more wide spread. It curls and laps like sea water. It sprawls like forests. It stretches across landscapes like sand. Love is a place. We build there.
I like love best for breakfast. The way I watch her stir sugar into her coffee. The news she has noticed versus the news I have. A recap of fine moments and trying ones. The way she will say something surprising, something that may sway my own thinking with formidable logic. I like to sit across from her to see her face as clearly as possible. A face I know as well as my own. And one I am also startled by — the tension of how young her expressions and how long I have noticed them. I am in no hurry to grow old and that is what I mean. The wear of it. The wear of love.
I prefer movies.
I prefer cats.
I prefer the oaks along the Warta.
I prefer Dickens to Dostoyevsky.
I prefer myself liking people
to myself loving mankind.
I prefer keeping a needle and thread on hand, just in case.
I prefer the color green.
I prefer not to maintain
that reason is to blame for everything.
I prefer exceptions.
I prefer to leave early.
I prefer talking to doctors about something else.
I prefer the old fine-lined illustrations.
I prefer the absurdity of writing poems
to the absurdity of not writing poems.
I prefer, where love’s concerned, nonspecific anniversaries
that can be celebrated every day.
I prefer moralists
who promise me nothing.
I prefer cunning kindness to the over-trustful kind.
I prefer the earth in civvies.
I prefer conquered to conquering countries.
I prefer having some reservations.
I prefer the hell of chaos to the hell of order.
I prefer Grimms’ fairy tales to the newspapers’ front pages.
I prefer leaves without flowers to flowers without leaves.
I prefer dogs with uncropped tails.
I prefer light eyes, since mine are dark.
I prefer desk drawers.
I prefer many things that I haven’t mentioned here
to many things I’ve also left unsaid.
I prefer zeroes on the loose
to those lined up behind a cipher.
I prefer the time of insects to the time of stars.
I prefer to knock on wood.
I prefer not to ask how much longer and when.
I prefer keeping in mind even the possibility
that existence has its own reason for being.