Friday, March 23, 2007

Between

2) “Summer’s Heat and Heart’s Loneliness”

River regattas (Een-out!) in the brilliant sunshine. Watched, self consciously alone.

Heat. Loneliness. Noisy trippers everywhere. Dust.

Pool in the Oxshott woods. He cycled there to swim but was lonely and afraid, so came away again. On the way he passed a place called “Gay Adventure”. “Behind this wall there is a beautiful garden…”. Someday he would go there, swim, dance, see that beautiful garden. But not now.

Near Virginia Water he once met an old man with a tea cart. Sat on the grass talking for a long time, whilst weekend traffic streamed past. The old man was filthy and crippled with VD. Yet he was happy!

At the Works he saw green leaves around the fuel oil tanks. (How hot it was!)

Once, he sat with Withey beside the river, near Weybridge. They were content, and told each other stories, in the evening coolness. After that, the friendship gradually seemed to dwindle away, till it was gone.

There was a ramble in the Maidenhead district and he had a glass of wonderfully cool beer at a village pub. In the tap room sat two lovers, their fingers touching as they looked at one another’s eyes. Inwardly, he sneered.

Gradually, through the summer, his character altered. He tended to be more steady and calm, less emotional. More alone.

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