Agape: In Search of Universal Love
from the novel, The Lodging for the Rose
Rolf. A. F. Witzsche

Story 1a - The Lateral Lattice of Hearts.
page 202

      "Will we live long enough to embrace all aspects of love, and all the aspects of the universal kiss?" she asked. "Not by a long way," she answered the question herself. "It seems sufficient just to embrace the seashore and begin the healing," she added.
      Helen grinned now. "So, what do you say; was I right to invite you here?"
      It occurred to me, that the kind of answer that was needed for this question could only be conveyed with another kiss.
      By the time we were finished getting ourselves dressed that morning, and ready to go, it was already past noon. We had lunch together at what appeared to be one of the most prominent downtown restaurants. Afterwards I drove Helen to the Airport. On the way, we stopped briefly at the hospital where her pianist friend was recovering from his wounded fingers. He cried over our offering of support. The thought of him being able to continue his career as a musician by played the violin that had always been his love, brought a smile to his face among a shower of tears of emotions. He said something to the effect that he could never repay us for our gift that would enable him to acquire a fine instrument. I suggested that this wasn't needed, that he should invite us instead to his first virtuoso performance of the Mendelssohn concerto. He protested that this was too hard to play. Helen told him not to limit himself, and added that the Beethoven concerto would do just fine, and that he could play it wherever he liked, in Berlin, Amsterdam, Paris, Moscow, New York, wherever it would be most convenient. Fortunately, we couldn't stay long.

      When Helen and I said our good bye at the Airport, I called her, "dearest," the way I had wished to address Erica before, and had failed. There, finally, I said it out loud, and it came out so naturally. But I wasn't prepared for the response I got.
      She waved a finger at me as though I had said something naughty. She smiled, "Dearest, is an impossibility. It violates the principle of universality. In love we are all one. If you had called me, dear, that I could have accepted. But, dearest? It is a contradiction of the principle that it relates to. This makes it an impossibility," she said and grinned. "Dearest, is an invalid idea, isn't it?"
      "This also means that I can't call my wife, dearest, ever again," I said astonished.
      Helen nodded. "And that is her security," she said, "because you can't call or regard anyone else that way either," she said and began to laugh. "Of course, I love you for voicing your affection in your sweet and wonderful way, even if what you said isn't scientifically correct."
      She concluded her acceptance of the gesture with a kiss and a hug, and another kiss as we smiled at one another satisfied that this had been a wonderful day.
      In the final moments before parting, she said something to the effect that I shouldn't be surprised if I find it difficult to think in absolute terms, not being used to it, and that she hoped she had helped me a tiny bit to turn my life around towards it, since I would probably forget most of the deep things she had talked about. She kissed me once more, hastily, as the last boarding call for her flight was announced. In saying good bye, she added, "I love you dear." She said it while she stepped through the boarding gate.
      "I love you and I kiss you!" I called out to her.
      She looked back once more and waved, and grinned, before she disappeared out of sight, smiling.

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 (c) Copyright 1998 - Rolf Witzsche
Published by Cygni Communications Ltd. North Vancouver, Canada