I think memory’s collapsed of that first kiss.
Perhaps in eight grade — could have been Ginger,
Who I remember but holding hands with;
Or someone in that spin-the-bottle group;
Funny, I just remember being there.
I’m sure I kissed at least two girls in High School.
But no heavy passion. Didn’t happen.
Have no memory of it. As I reflect,
Even kissings from college — none have stuck.
Drafted, stationed near Paris — things picked-up..
But no kiss memory. Except Ana!
We had three months together — in Fontainebleau-Paris.
She left Madrid’s Nunnery to travel, find herself.
But so very Catholic — I wasn’t.
She — virgin until marriage — I wasn’t
But we shared a true love-companionship.
I recall our kiss as she returned home.
Ana was beautiful and now so free.
It was a time lifted from time. Surreal!
Later, Ruth from college days visited.
We kissed much — and as she boarded the train.
But I’ve lost the existential hold of these kisses.
Two years later, back home, I finally met Marilyn.
We first kissed sitting by a restaurant’s
Sunny window table on old Route 50.
That most memorable kiss still holds today,
More kisses. Ten months later we married —
With a kiss that was worth the loud applause.
The problem I have now, at 85,
Widowed; Marilyn gone for nearly 10 years,
Is — I’ve lost that full existential-soul-feel
Of two held — lifted — as one by a kiss.
Where did that magical-feel-memory go?
I admit, I dream still of such a kiss.

[O for a beautiful Ana-Ruth-Marilyn to re-incarnate such a kiss again.
Not a sex thing at my age. More a spiritual-renewal-event thing.
Sacred rite of passage for an olding romantic. Oh, My!
I live it vicariously, of course, movies, books, and the lives of others.
Kisses, the deeply real ones that hold, are not to be taken for granted.
Ah, to be transformed again by that taste-feel of an immortal elixir.
I think what I most seek and envision will not happen again.
Beauty rarely kisses an aging Beast again. Blessed, I’ve known
The kiss of Beauty. I seek that soul-mate-held-as-one-human-to-human kiss;
A very mortal man-woman fusing with a sensation-taste of eternity now.
A reciprocity that stores its fruit-flower in the living garden of memory.
Seeds it there, that its living-feel can re-bloom some-sun-day.
At this point in life, I never expected to miss it so–indeed, it is not,
That trembling kiss of life….of a me a you a you a me and a we-our-us…]

I wonder for it!– for Death has it not
We’re mortals face-to-face, but once. Had I,
Such a soul-kiss in this time “once” again. . .
That freshened sharing of life’s wonderment,
I think I’d collapse in tears.

mdok — 3/15/19