Talking to Patrizia
Patrizia doesn't want to Talk about love she Says she just Wants to make Love but she talks About it almost endlessly to me. It is horrible it Is the worst thing in life Says Patrizia Nothing Not death not sickness Is as bad as love I am always In love I am always Suffering from love Says Patrizia. Now I am used to it But I am suffering all the same Do you know what I did to her Once?--speaking Of her girlfriend--I kicked her out I literally kicked her she was down on the floor and I Gave her the colpi di piedi the Kicks of my foot. She slided out. She did this To me promised to go on a trip I am all waiting prepared Suitcases and tickets She comes and says her other friend finds out she Can't go she guessed about it. I KICKED her out Oh we are still together Sometimes. But love is horrible. I thought You might be the best Person to talk to Patrizia since you Love women and are a woman Yourself. You may be right Patrizia Said. But this woman who abandons You I think you should Disappear. Though maybe with this woman Disappearing won't work. I think not disappear. It's too bad I don't know her If I knew her if I could see her Just for ten minutes--I'm afraid If you saw her you might take Her away from me. Patrizia Laughs. No it hasn't happened to me Thank God to like such young women yet Why? When you are my Age--still young--she Is thirty . . . nine? you are close enough To people very young to Know how horrible they are And you don't love them You don't want to have anything To do with them! Oh Uh huh, I said putting My hands down on the table and then off Look at you excuse me but I have to laugh At you sitting in this horrible Restaurant at one o'clock In the morning in a City you don't want to be In and why? For this woman. It is horrible I know but Also funny I know I said. Listen I have An idea. Do you know her address? You know where She lives? You should go there Go and hide there Outside her house In the bushes Then when she comes out You jump out You confront her. You will see If there is love In her eyes or not. It can't Be hidden. You will know It can't be mistaken This works This has always worked For me. It won't work for me. I can't Go and hide there It is true Patrizia says when there is love everything Works when there isn't nothing does. Love Is a god These Freudian things I don't believe at all This god you have to do what He wants you to you are Angry but all you really want Is to get her back. Then--revenge! If This woman did something like this to me I would simply dislike her in fact I would hate her You may want to consider Patrizia said that this woman is Doing this test to you. No, I Said. I know she's not. I know something. I feel A hundred years old. Yet You don't look so bad, Patrizia said. Find another woman. I can't. I Know Patrizia said. But one always thinks it Is a good idea. But If you can't you can't. I Can't even eat This food Patrizia I said. I'm sorry I said Patrizia to be so Boring I can't stop talking Forgive Me. It doesn't bore me at all Patrizia says It's my favorite subject It isn't every day one sees somebody In such a state you can help him by talking to stay alive You know, Patrizia says if she Does this thing to you now She will do it again And again so you'd better be ready Maybe you can get the advantage By saying she is right you Don't love her Good bye You leave However if you want her You should go into the bushes And surprise her when they see you It always makes a difference I can't go hide there Patrizia That's insane. I went but not Hiding and not confronting. Patrizia: What did she say? I said The same things. Patrizia said Did you see love in her eyes? I said No. I didn't. I saw Something else. In Florence it's rainy Her (relatively) short hair and Her eyes along the Arno The last time I'll ever see her again As the one I am seeing again When seeing again still has some meaning. It's finished Patrizia's saying For now but don't worry I think you will get her back But it will be too late. Oh Patrizia I Let my back and head fall against The chair Late isn't anything!
From One Train, published by Alfred A. Knopf, 1994. Copyright © 1994 by Kenneth Koch. Reprinted with permission.