sweet baby james


this is the strangest relationship i'm in. he's addicted to his
computer, something i also suffered from, and he plays games
on and off the net for hours.

last night i wanted to make love and he was playing a game.
Civilization. "just a few more minutes," he kept saying.

finally i told him, "fine. i'm going to annoy you by singing every
James Taylor song I know till you get off."

and i did.

i was, and still am, worried about his temper, and about the way
he talks to his mom and his daughter. i told him the other day
how i felt and it made a difference. i was surprised. why do i
assume no man could love me enough to let me make a difference
in his life?

yesterday we were having a conversation and i asked him, "have you
met very many bright and beautiful women?"

"not many. not till i met you."

and god forgive me, i laughed till i thought i'd cry.

then i did cry.

i really believed he was joking.

i look in the mirror and i see my blotchy skin, my gray hair, my rolls
and wrinkles. i don't see beauty.

but he does.

and it moved me.

"i'm really glad i met you, glenn," i told him today.

"i'm really, really glad i met you, denise," he replied. and i was surprised.

"really?" i asked him.

"really," he said firmly.

why won't i let myself believe that?

and what if it's not true.

oh, that urge to run was so strong this morning that i
thought about walking the eight miles into Gadsden
from Attala where Glenn lives. the closest i got was
when i made sure all my possessions were all in my
duffel bag and zippered up.

"Rock-a-bye sweet baby James."

i help his daughter with her homework, help his seriously ill mother
do things like clean and watch Krystal, Glenn's daughter.

and far into the night i sit on the bed beside glenn as he builds
towns and armies and cultures and i sing, very softly, all the songs
James Taylor's ever sung.

and if every once in a while i find myself shaking my head quickly at
some passing thought that worries me, it's not that big a deal, is it?

and if once in a while i feel like sneaking out in the night and
walking home, that doesn't mean that this moment can't be a
good one.

don't push, don't assume, don't judge, don't criticize.

just sing, sweetly, softly, till glenn smiles, turns off his computer
and makes love to me.


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