Sunday, May 22, 2011
The Poet & The Butterfly: What Comes After
From: Mandy Richardson
To: Keveen Gabet
Date: Sunday, February 24, 2008, 4:48pm
Thank you for correcting the passage so quickly xo
And now a story...
After calling every place I could think of, the 6th shop had your scent. I got off the phone and made my way to the mall, to a very small shop called Couture Parfums. She had been expecting me and had the various sized boxes ready for me when I got there. I asked for a sample right away and she sprayed a tester onto a perfume stick.
I smelled it and gave it back. 'That's not it' I said. I felt my heart break.
I looked at the boxes in front of me-all men's, and I asked if she was certain she had used the correct bottle. Turns out she had offered me the women's version of it.
She returned with a new perfume stick and I brought it up towards my face and gently inhaled.
Tears welled up in my eyes and then ran down my face. The clerk gave me a tissue asking me if it reminded me of someone I knew...
I told her the story of you and I and she ignored other customers to hear it. She was touched by my expression and asked my name and the name of the book. She also took a picture of me holding the box that contains the scent of my beloved.
I walked around the mall, repeatedly smelling my wrist, where I had dabbed a drop of you, and the tears would not stop flowing.
They still haven't.
I had to leave the mall because I looked like a fool, smelling my arm and wiping my tears. I did not take the bus home because I knew my sobs would echo inside, and I needed to be alone. So I walked a very long walk, crying the whole way, saying 'It's you', 'You're here', as I smelled my wrist.
Then I stopped by the library to rent Amelie, needing to enter fully, once again, into all of the symbols that lead me to you. With the movie in my hand and the essence of you on my wrist, the librarian asked me when my next book is coming out.
I began to cry.
What a day.
I had my journal with me while I was out today because I knew I would need it. I was already tearing up when I approached the store, so I knew once I actually smelled you again I would lose it. And I did. On the way home I wrote as I walked.
Words to you, words to me. I wonder if there's any difference now.
And as I cried and spoke to you and spoke to God, I wondered if I am destined to live merely with the scent and the memory of the man I adored. Is it not some cruel fate that I should be given a glimpse of heaven and not be able to return to it but through words we had written in the dark?
I know not how to get you out of my system, or why after giving you all of me I have yet to fully penetrate yours. I curse God and not you however, for the depth of the soul who cannot help but pour herself into your beautiful vase.
I feel right back where I started, fully reentering a time that is no longer, but somehow feels brand new.
I am crying each day, some days two or three times, feeling so touched, so alive, so in love with the experience of living.
But in my journal I keep writing 'what comes after?'
I wonder what on earth could follow the best time of my life. How could anything compare? What could top the highest point?
My friends suggest the topper would be a man living in Canada, just for starters:) But I don't believe they understand.
I'm not wondering about a relationship or a man.
I'm wanting to know what could possibly top the experience of my soul's recognition during the time of you; the experience of finally finding the place where I belong.
When I met and fell in love with you, I felt I had returned home, but I have since felt homeless.
This is my dilemma. I had it all. I soared the heights with and through you. And I fear I am destined for mediocricy somehow, because since that time only one thing has truly marked me in a similar way, and that was the graduation of my first Diva class, and your letter only added to the perfection of that night.
So what am I to do? Pray for another miracle like you? Just be grateful that I was able to fully experience something others only dream about?
But there are many more years to live and create, and I can't spend them all knowing what I knew with you, without having a way to keep that knowing close. So until I figure out a better way, Jaipur and Amelie will help me remember the love I once knew; when all was perfect and pure. When my soul grew alive and my life turned brand new.
Keveen, I am certain I will wear your scent each day because for me it is the scent of life and love, of my soul and your words. And to have a daily reminder of the time when all was perfect and magical, is to be reminded of how to live.
I wish I could envelope you forever, in my coat of love. I wish you could feel for me what I have felt for you because it would change everything in your world. But I doubt you need an awakening like I needed when you came along; for you already know how to live.
'He touches all things, and brings them to life', was what I wrote of you 2 days ago...
Yours forever and always, without knowing why,
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
The above email was written to Keveen almost a full year after we had embarked upon the adventure of a lifetime, which became the non-fiction soul story, The Poet & The Butterfly: An Intimate Dialogue.
The above picture was taken by the clerk at the perfume shop the day this email was written, after I had cried and shared the story of us.
Thank you for reading our hearts,