There’s a movie in somebody’s mind, played over and over until the lines are committed to memory. The plot gets tightened in all the right places as it is run through the brain. Everyone knows the beginning of the tale, and no one knows – perhaps, no one cares – when and how it will end. What matters in the story is the long, sustained exchanges of glances, stares, and words.
The stutters and the stammers articulate the feeling of affection; walking side by side, arm in arm, with hands clasped together can provide the image. It could be, for all intents and purposes, frozen. The tableau of two lovers perhaps kept still in a starry night, or walking off into the sunset. No one cares much for the scenery, or the camera angles, but always – certainly almost always – the focus is on the couple. How they talk, how they spend time with each other, how they get to know each other in the course of that lifetime.
Love. It is the long, extended chronicle. It is fiction, yet too many times, the movie in the mind can be ever so true.
The storyteller is faced with the problem of telling the tale as it happened, or speaking of the dreams of the characters. Does one speak of the event, or the feeling? It’s almost always the challenge to weave the feeling along with the event, and the dream and the reality are never congruent. They live and exist so apart from each other. Maybe that’s the reason why the writer is almost always challenged to write the story at that difficult, if not overbearing, instance between the real and the true. That is, to marry them together and make the perfect couple: in this case, the love story.
I’ve never been really good at telling stories, yet I’m inspired by them. While I wouldn’t take my cues from movies or from novels, I’d take them from what I feel, and when I see what I feel. I’ve always felt the feeling of being the spectator in everyone else’s love story, but not anymore. In time, maybe I can tell that story because I felt it, experienced it, and made it come alive in me.
I guess I better change tenses. That story is told because I feel it, experience it, and it is alive in me. To some degree in halting Japanese, Ai-jin and Koibito in the volumes and chapters of a daisuki monogatari written every day for the rest of my life.