living with you

We have a special music recommendation update! Sagar Bildani, friend of the mag, will be picking a song for us each week. It'll be suited to the newsletter's theme and he'll be telling us why. For this newsletter, he chose:

Japanese Denim, Daniel Cesar

My blue jeans

Will last me all my life, oh yes

So should we

I'm spending all this time

There is something really quaint about using fancy denim as a metaphor for a relationship. Aficionados say crafting the finest denim involves an arduous process, but the end result is worth it because the fabric virtually lasts forever. A relationship, along the same lines, is something that needs to be nurtured. In these circumstances of solitude, where all we have is time and each other, maybe we can weave some Japanese Denim ... make a meaningful connection with someone special.

You could never really say what it is like,

this hour of drinking wine together

on a hot summer night, in the living room

with the windows open, in our underwear, a

few distant tower rooms looking

down into our window, my nylon bra

gleaming faintly in the heat,

This Hour, Sharon Olds

This painting by Hopper reminds me of this piece by David Ignatow in Shadowing The Ground:

"You understand the lonely life I live, your life as lonely as my own and yet we share a single house and often share each other’s food but keep a door upon each other when each or either of of us must keep alone, not just to write and think but live the solitary life that is our life, that knows itself in solitude and keeps its own silent company."

“Ordinary Sex”, by Ellen Bass, which begins,

If no swan descends
in a blinding glare of plumage,
drumming the air with deafening wings,
if the earth doesn’t tremble
and rivers don’t tumble uphill,
if my mother’s crystal
vase doesn’t shatter
and no extinct species are sighted anew
and leaves of the city trees don’t applaud
as you zing me to the moon, starry tesserae
cascading down my shoulders,
if we stay right here
on our aging Simmons Beautyrest,
dumped into the sag in the middle,
that’s okay.
You don’t need to strew rose petals
in my bath or set a band of votive candles
flickering around the rim.
You don’t need to invent a thrilling
new position, two dragonflies
mating on the wing. Honey,
you don’t even have to wash up after work.
A little sweat and sunscreen
won’t bother me.

This poem reminisces of two people taking each other for exactly who they are. Chemistry and compatibility seem like sandpaper until the days turn into months and you've spent them all next to one person who seems enough, so enough that for the first time in your life, your happiness is devoid of overwhelm.