Love, of course is the ultimate conversation… as is hate. And– like all genuine conversations– its subject is, to a large extent, itself. So that lovers (at least those who have any right to the name beyond the purely physical act) are always engaged in the process of defining what love, in fact, IS.

In that first embrace, the first kiss, the first tenuous touching of hands, two ideas of love connect, but do not yet meet. Detached from having to locate it in any one individual, I carry love only as an idea as to its possibilities. Choosing you, I ask you to carry the weight of making my idea flesh… of embodying it.

The irony, of course, is that, having chosen you because you in some manner (imagined, or, at least partially, real) embody my idea of love, you assure me (being flesh, and not thought) that my idea is wrong– i.e. that it needs to be modified. In the best of loves– the most accepting, the most grounded in the actualities of the other– it may be that love ceases to be an idea altogether and becomes (God forbid! cries the romantic) an actuality… And that then the imagination, every ravenous, will have to look elsewhere for what nourishes it.

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