Arthur Meiselman

Daisy, Daisy

     Give me your answer do!
He wasn't an old man. She wasn't an old woman. They were rather young in this time of 50 is really 40. Yet... one day, he couldn't remember his name. It went on for days. And then... she couldn't remember hers. They simply could not remember their own names! It was mildly disturbing like a wind in the house with all the doors and windows shut.

So... each wrote the other's name on a paper bracelet and wore them all day and all night. The wind was still there. Her name on his bracelet was ‘Daisy’. He didn't know if this was actually her name because she didn't recognize it. To help her, he switched bracelets. Now the name on his bracelet was still ‘Daisy’. The house wind continued to blow.

They had been together, married nearly fifteen years. They had no children and little contact with any family since they lived on the other side of the country, a side their sparse families seldom if ever visited. Together. They lived together alone. She had some money, no need to work for a living. Neither did he. Together they could not think of any problems they had in the bedroom or the bathroom or on the porch when the summer nights were soft and the trees wind-talked to each other.

     I'm half crazy
Still... this blankshot of memory when each reached for "my own name", this absence of a title card in front of remembered identity, this was more than mysterious, more than unbalanced. He became uneasy, uncentered, undoing. He shifted his balance in front of a mirror for long minutes, staring at his face, staring at the bracelet on his wrist, holding it up in front of the image in the mirror. He heard her whisper, stop, it doesn't make any difference does it? He looked at his wrist and said, yes Daisy, it does.

They had a large garden. They gardened together. When the plants emerged and spread, they walked together, strolling the lanes of the garden, unnavigated, unplanned walks. If she stopped what she was doing in the house to walk in the garden, he would stop what he was doing and catch up to her, walking along. If they could only remember their names. Being alone would not flush the skin from flashes of caution.

     All for the love of you!
It rained one day for long hours. When it finally lifted, the house was costumed with water-drop jewels that rolled, slipped, lingered especially on the windows. They stayed in bed together during the long hours, half asleep, half awake. Smoothing his hand over her warm skin, he said, I don't really know who you are. Look at your wrist, she said. I mean, he said, without your name I see a deep part of you that I don't know.

It wasn't the same for her. She knew him... from his eyes down through his belly, down to the rounded edges of his toes. She knew his moods, his desires, his comforts, his often sleepless sleep. She knew him like she knew the plants in her garden, down to the roots, always searching for light, always searching for moisture, always waiting to be consumed. And she knew... what he didn't know.

     It won't be a stylish marriage
Love... sensual love, emotional love, love of body, love of mind. He loved her all, all. She loved him all, somewhat all. Once she asked him, what causes this unthinking attraction, this hypnotic pull toward one person? It's mysterious, he said, it lays deep in the river of our evolution. Deep in her river, deep in her evolution she could not find it. Can you have it for more than one at the same time? He didn't answer.

They were happy on their wedding night, and every anniversary of that night. Now another anniversary was coming and they could not remember their names.

     I can't afford a carriage
He said, I’ll give you everything I have. She said nothing, only smiled. He said, I'll give you everything that is me and take everything that is you. There will be only... we, and no one else will ever be part of we. One day we’ll fall asleep together and never wake up. Her smile faded. She said, that means we would cross from white to black… no shades or colors in between. He smiled and said, the most dangerous expense of life.

     But you'll look sweet on the seat
She touched the bracelet on her wrist. She looked in the mirror. The few fleeting tears at the edges of her eyes disappeared.

     Of a bicycle built for two!
Another anniversary. Today it is snowing, a fluffy, white cape on the ground, a necklace of glistening icicle jewels hanging from the trees and bushes, a faint trace of music in the wind-talking trees. She stands in front of the mirror whispering her name... ‘Daisy’. He is sleeping. She walks through the rooms of the house, stops where he sleeps. The sun has quieted the snowfall. She wraps a warm shawl around her, drapes her bag over her shoulder and steps outside on to the white cape. She begins to walk through the sleeping garden, across the sleeping grass, on to the road. She looks back at the house then at the sun. She begins to walk down the road.

She never came back.

After one day, he went to sleep and never woke up.

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Arthur Meiselman is a playwright, writer and the Editor of Scene4. He also directs the Talos Ensemble and
produces for Aemagefilms.
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©2016 Arthur Meiselman
©2016 Publication Scene4 Magazine


June 2016

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