Anton's Ideas

Anton Wills-Eve on world news & random ideas

Category: serious romance

MY EPITOMES


a heart wrenching memory  can be the only real epitome of love

MY EPITOMES

As I grew up I always knew that everything I wanted in the girl I loved would have to be exactly as I imagined the epitome of my putative wife. From early, wondering years of innocence, yes even then when I was only ten, for my life-long lover to mean to me and I to she, everything I desired. I knew I could not live with any girl who lacked the following four outstanding qualities.

For a start, I was certain I could not live with someone who never smiled or laughed and, being vain, especially laughed at me. I mean of course in the sense that she should share my sense of humour and fun so that everything we might enjoy we might enjoy as one. I had such a tiny space for shared virtues in that partition of my mental world; there could never be room for more than two of us at once. Well not for another goddess-lover anyway because of my imagined lover’s second requisite quality. She had to be somebody, and this I think I knew beyond doubt when only fifteen, to whom I would want to be always faithful. And she always true to me. I wanted someone I could place upon a pedestal and to whom my wedding vows of love and constancy would not just be words, but the sincerest feelings I had ever felt. Promises that, were I to break them, I might as well have taken a cleaver to my heart, almost smote it in twain with all the strength I had.

Then her third necessary adjunct to her humanity would have had to be the depth of her love for me. How selfish can a man become when all he can see throughout his life is being worshipped and adored by his wife? But I also had a safety valve for this particular emotion, this necessary quality in the object of my devotion. It was this. If ever I should stumble, trip or fall and for a few moments gaze upon another girl. Then, should the wife that I had chosen, out of despair, disappointment, sadness or for whatever reason, take her revenge by similarly deceiving me I would totally and unconditionally forgive her. Providing she never asked me to confront the object of any brief and physical desire, I would absolve her, never query, question ask or threaten her. Just forgive. I could live with such a normal human thing. I could forgive, but only if I realised I too had been capable of setting her aside for the same reason, the same very short season and one that I could know would never last. Indeed, that I would have to know had already passed.

Her fourth quality? I am surprised you have not wondered, well you have not, have you? Why I have not included the beauty of her looks, her personality or her physical attributes. You know, they would mean nothing to me. I firmly believed this from my late teen years as so many girls of beauty, normality, shyness or vivacity had all seemed so alike to me. No, the other thing I knew she would have to have would be a deep and gentle love for her fellow men. In short she would have to come to me unburdened with any type of prejudice arising out of unreasonable hatred or dislike for others. I was sure I would place that quality above any fair features in her face or figure. I could only hold her really close and really love her, if I knew that she loved all humanity as much as I did too. So did I ever find her, this paragon? Or was she just a fairy dream?

Oh, I found her once. Then twice, then thrice and am settled now with my fourth wife. But every time the severance I had to undergo was due to the ending of her human life, and each widowing hurt me unbearably. But were they all the epitome of all those qualities I so innocently insisted I could not live without? Yes, of course, they each predominantly had one. My first brief Italian love loved me so much she would have given me up rather than fail in her duty to her suffering family. Lucia, of the four, was the closest to a saint in her love of others as she died at the age of twenty three, while kissing me.. My second, my deepest love, was in Vietnam. Anh, gave her life to nursing the destitute and in her way gave me the strongest reason to pray for another human being. She and my baby daughter were killed in a war, it tore the heart out of me. Of all my loves she was the epitome of selflessly devoting every second of her life to me. She left me the softest smile I ever craved or knew.

My third wife Anne, left suddenly of a cardiac disease. Ours was the briefest, oddest joining of two people. Before she died so suddenly she was the cause and the epitome of total forgiveness between two normal, morally fragile human beings. Her parting present in atonement, one for one, was my eldest son. Lucia ‘s gift had been twin daughters, their families now still and always a part of me, though living many lands away. Anh offers me herself every day with memories of herself and our lovely little girl. And finally my fourth, my longest, my most enduring love is still the epitome of everything that cheers. She shares her laughter and shows how much she loves loving me. Her gift is my last and youngest son. The epitome of any happy union with anyone.

AWE

Advertisements

MY EPITOMES


<a href=”https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/epitome/”>Epitome</a&gt;

a heart wrenching memory  can be the only real epitome of love

MY EPITOMES

As I grew up I always knew that everything I wanted in the girl I loved would have to be exactly as I imagined the epitome of my putative wife. From early, wondering years of innocence, yes even then when I was only ten, for my life-long lover to mean to me and I to she, everything I desired. I knew I could not live with any girl who lacked the following four outstanding qualities.

For a start, I was certain I could not live with someone who never smiled or laughed and, being vain, especially laughed at me. I mean of course in the sense that she should share my sense of humour and fun so that everything we might enjoy we might enjoy as one. I had such a tiny space for shared virtues in that partition of my mental world; there could never be room for more than two of us at once. Well not for another goddess-lover anyway because of my imagined lover’s second requisite quality. She had to be somebody, and this I think I knew beyond doubt when only fifteen, to whom I would want to be always faithful. And she always true to me. I wanted someone I could place upon a pedestal and to whom my wedding vows of love and constancy would not just be words, but the sincerest feelings I had ever felt. Promises that, were I to break them, I might as well have taken a cleaver to my heart, almost smote it in twain with all the strength I had.

Then her third necessary adjunct to her humanity would have had to be the depth of her love for me. How selfish can a man become when all he can see throughout his life is being worshipped and adored by his wife? But I also had a safety valve for this particular emotion, this necessary quality in the object of my devotion. It was this. If ever I should stumble, trip or fall and for a few moments gaze upon another girl. Then, should the wife that I had chosen, out of despair, disappointment, sadness or for whatever reason, take her revenge by similarly deceiving me I would totally and unconditionally forgive her. Providing she never asked me to confront the object of any brief and physical desire, I would absolve her, never query, question ask or threaten her. Just forgive. I could live with such a normal human thing. I could forgive, but only if I realised I too had been capable of setting her aside for the same reason, the same very short season and one that I could know would never last. Indeed, that I would have to know had already passed.

Her fourth quality? I am surprised you have not wondered, well you have not, have you? Why I have not included the beauty of her looks, her personality or her physical attributes. You know, they would mean nothing to me. I firmly believed this from my late teen years as so many girls of beauty, normality, shyness or vivacity had all seemed so alike to me. No, the other thing I knew she would have to have would be a deep and gentle love for her fellow men. In short she would have to come to me unburdened with any type of prejudice arising out of unreasonable hatred or dislike for others. I was sure I would place that quality above any fair features in her face or figure. I could only hold her really close and really love her, if I knew that she loved all humanity as much as I did too. So did I ever find her, this paragon? Or was she just a fairy dream?

Oh, I found her once. Then twice, then thrice and am settled now with my fourth wife. But every time the severance I had to undergo was due to the ending of her human life, and each widowing hurt me unbearably. But were they all the epitome of all those qualities I so innocently insisted I could not live without? Yes, of course, they each predominantly had one. My first brief Italian love loved me so much she would have given me up rather than fail in her duty to her suffering family. Lucia, of the four, was the closest to a saint in her love of others. My second, my deepest love, was in Vietnam. Anh, gave her life to nursing the destitute and in her way gave me the strongest reason to pray for another human being. She and my baby daughter were killed in a war, it tore the heart out of me. Of all my loves she was the epitome of selflessly devoting every second of her life to me. She left me the softest smile I ever craved.

My third wife Anne, left suddenly of a cardiac disease. Ours was the briefest, oddest joining of two people. Before she died so suddenly she was the cause and the epitome of total forgiveness between two normal, morally fragile human beings. Her parting present in atonement, one for one, was my eldest son. Lucia ‘s gift was twin daughters, their families still and always a part of me, though living many lands away. Anh offers me herself every day with memories of our lovely little girl. And finally my fourth, my longest, my most enduring love is still the epitome of everything that cheers, shares laughter and loves how much she loves loving me. Her gift is my last and youngest son. The epitome of any happy union with anyone.

AWE

OUR PRODUCTIVE HOURS


<a href=”https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/because-the-night/”>Because the Night</a>

the most productive time of day, or is it night?

                OUR PRODUCTIVE HOURS

Isn’t it lucky I’m not a woman? No, listen; not that way! I mean in the context of the prompt. If I was a woman then I would know what  my most productive time was, all my kids would be born at times the doctors noted as they delivered the babies. It’s easy for the the fair sex to know such things beyond doubt.

But it’s very unfair on the unfair sex. How are we supposed to remember? I mean my late first wife and current second wife were gorgeous and eminently loveable at any time of the day. I am no prude but you surely don’t want me to go into details do you?

You do!? Okay, well firstly I have to count up the children I have and see if I can work it out. No, you’re right it’s hopeless. Gemma, my little girl who was killed, could have been begotten  at any one of four times between midnight and eight am. Then The twins were almost certainly sometime in the late afternoon. My eldest boy was the victim of gestation on a Malayan Beach at around 3.00am, I think, and my youngest son was definitely around eleven at night, in a hotel by the seaside in England. Then…..

What are you looking at me like that for? How the hell should I know how many more I’ve got? Some women never tell you anything!

 

AWE 

 

 

LOVING SWEET HAZEL


<a href=”https://dailypost.wordpress.com/dp_prompt/born-to-be-with-you/”>Born to Be With You</a>

she desbribes herself, does she not?

LOVING SWEET HAZEL

A couple of weeks ago I felt obliged to miss a holiday and stay behind with a chap who had broken his leg and had to pull out of our University college students’ trip to Rome. Peter was a catholic and had never been to Rome. He had saved like mad that year to enjoy the trip. Then a week before we were due to leave for the Easter two week visit to the eternal city he came off his bike on the  the ‘High’ and broke his leg in two places.

Several of us felt really sorry for Peter but we gathered round his bed on the week before we were due to leave and promised to send him daily email videos and hoped he could make the holiday the following summer vacation. This was the point at which I wondered whether I should stay behind and cheer him up, but he would not hear of it. “John, you can’t miss the trip. Anyway I’ll be poor company stuck in this bed for the whole time, so I insist. Off you go.”

What happened next was quite unexpected. The holiday club that our college languages students had set up always managed to get good reductions on travel fares and accomodation on our various visits to cities around Europe. We were limited to twenty travellers on each holiday we arranged which meant a mad rush for any last minute reduced tickets and hotels if anyone pulled out. Several people called on the the door of the travel club, that year I was secretary, to see if there were any spare places. I was inundated and both tickets, the only two I had, were gone by 9.00am. As I commiserated with an Australian fellow and was about to shut my door to my rooms, a panting girl rounded the corner and managed to ask, “Am I too late?” I was nodding my head when I realised the poor soul was trying desparately to hold back her tears. I had to ask,

“I say, are you okay? I don’t think we’ve met but I’ve seen you at lectures. What are you studying?” She was amazed that I seemed to care about her at all. She blushed furiously and said very sadly,

“Oh I’m in my second year of Italian and I so wanted to visit the country. But never mind. I probably never will now.”I was just not prepared to put up with this and asked her why ever not. She turned away and I could see she was really badly upset. It was no ordinary disappointment it was something bordering on a fit of depression at the thought she would never do the one thing she had always wanted. I could not let her go back towards the college quad in such an obvious state of sad disappointment. She looked up at me as I asked her.

“Look I’m just locking up here, you wouldn’t like to come out for a coffee with me would you? I’ve nothing to do for a couple of  hours. Then if there are any more last minute cancellations you’ll be with me and I can see that you’ll get a place.” She was overjoyed and then became rather hesitant. I could tell that she was not being completely honest when she said,

“Oh, but I’ve got this work to hand in, but if you could keep any place that came along open for me I’d be very grateful.” There was something more nervous than devious in her voice and I was unable to work out what was getting at her. Then an idea struck me. I had not yet asked her her name and this of course was necessary if I was going to reserve anything for her, so I took a step towards her and half laughing said,

“But hang on a tick. I don’t know your name . Who are you and where do I contact you if  I find a place for you?” She went pale and I could have sworn a shiver went up her spine. She didn’t seem to want to tell me about herself at all, and yet at the same time realised she must. Now, as I was going to play along with her I let her take her time and then she told me,  “It’s Hazel French, even though I am reading Italian, and I’m in room 12 on the second staircase. Look I’ll give you my mobile phone number as well. I’m sorry if I seem uncertain of what I’m doing but I have got behind with my work.” I accepted this as I was starting to work out a plan of my own. Also her expression, ‘if I seem uncertain of what I’m doing,’ was exactly how she came across to me. I closed the conversation by taking a visiting card out of my pocket and handing it to her so she could get hold of me at any place and at any time. What struck me most forcibly, however, was the very definite sob I heard as I saw her disappear round the corner of the quad. The Ivy wall muffled the sound but not enough to convince me that she was not going through a very rough patch in her life.

There were three days to go to the ‘off’ for the Rome trip and a lot of us, seven girls and twelve boys, were getting excited at the prospect. But you may have noticed that we were only nineteen instead of the twenty originally booked. Only a few minutes before lunch on that Wednesday a chap had had to call off as his father was ill and so I had a place for Hazel. I was really glad to be able to ring her with the news, but both texts and phone calls went unanswered. I decided to go round to her room and see if I could find her. She was just coming out as I ran up the gothic hallway to her door.

Hazel, Hazel. Hang on a minute I’ve managed to get you a ticket.” My voice was full of obvious delight but not the tone of her reply.

John? John, have you really? Oh I hope it isn’t too late to make all the necessary arrangements.” She sounded almost relieved that she had found an excuse for not having to go. I could sense beyond doubt that I had to play this very carefully. My first thought was that she was ill in some way and did not think she could manage the journey. I was closer to the truth than I could have imagined. But I was determined to get to the bottom of the mystery and, given the time of day, I suggested we go for a drink and a sandwich and iron out any problems that she thought were insurmountable. The reaction was sudden and frankly frightening.

John, John look please just leave me alone. Stop pestering me and let me lead my own life. I can’t make the Rome trip and that’s all there is to it. Okay?” Then she burst into tears and raced away from me, out of the building and looking awful. I let her go. I was sure that this called for a much more subtle and medically well informed approach than I could possible manage in barely three days. But One of my closest friends from school who was at a different college was studying psychiatry. I hoped he could help.

What wonderful things mobile phones are. Within seven minutes Stephen and I were sitting next to each other over a pint of beer and he was fascinated by my mystery tourist.

John, the key to all this, if I’m right, lies in the first morning you saw her. How upset was she at not getting a ticket on the trip or was it all play acting?”

Definitely not acting, Steve. More as though she had screwed her courage to the sticking place and could not believe she’d been thwarted at the last minute. I think it was the obvious change in her attitude that intrigued me after that.” My somewhat pompous and self opinionated friend rubbed his hands together and said,

Case solved, John. But it will take very careful handling if you are going to get her on that plane by Saturday evening. John she has has a fairly common but seldon correctly diagnosed phobia. It is half agoraphobia and half claustrophobia. Now here’s what you have to do.” I’m so glad I never doubt my friends, maybe that is why they are my friends.

I calculated it would be around five pm that Hazel would return to her room. For a start Stephen’s diagnosis had explained how Hazel had managed to get such a coveted billet. Obviously the senior college tutor had been told what was wrong with her and had done all he could to help. I felt sure her fellow second year students just thought her family were very rich and had bribed the college. Poor thing, that was the last thing she needed. Anyway, I was leaning up against her door post as she rounded the corner to her room at ten past five. She was startled to see me and just froze on the spot. Thank heavens Steve had primed me really well.

Hullo, mystery girl, “I smiled at her. “Please just don’t hyperventilate until you have invited me in for a drink, which, naturally, I have provided. I hope you drink Champagne, most people with acute anxiety neuroses do. I have a chilled bottle and a couple of fluted glasses in my attache case here so why don’t we dive in before they get too hot?”

This was the moment I was not expecting. She burst into floods of tears. Then taking a quick step towards me she flung her arms round my neck and said, “Thank you John. Oh, thank you so much. How on earth did you know? Only my family do and they did not want me to come up at all as they thought the strain would be far too great. But, look I’m soaking you. Oh, I am sorry John. But did you mean it about the Champagne? I can’t stand it hot. And her lovely smile completely transformed her features. I wasn’t sure but I think that was the moment I fell very deeply in love with her.

The bubbly was consumed at a rather Formula one pace and Hazel was delighted to discover that I had a second bottle in my electric cold box. We both seemed to know instinctively that we didn’t want to be separated for even a few minutes and so I quickly got the problem out of the way by saying, “Oh, I’ve changed the hotel rooms and plane seats round, so you won’t have any trouble managing the tricky parts of the holiday. I shall be at your side at all times. Finally, on a practical note, my love, do you have serious trouble managing crowded or deserted places on your own, only, or are you ok as long as someone who understands your illness Is with you?”

She giggled deliciously. Actually John, I don’t know. When the really awful attacks hit me there is nothing I can do but hang on to someone like you. But I never get any warning.” That would be an eye opener for Steve, he assured me that could never happen. But it solved one problem for me. All I had to do was make sure her passport was as it should be and I could have her on that plane whenever I wanted.

Hazel, don’t take this the wrong way, but I really do love you so I would hate to spoil this holiday for you by doing anything that might morally or otherwise upset you if you were treating it as a sort of pilgrimage to help you get better. Are you?” Now it was my turn not to know what to do. She replied,

Yes, I am a Catholic and I was hoping this might show God how much I was prepared to put up with to deserve his help in curing me.”

I didn’t know what to say, so didn’t. I just gave her an affectionate hug and promised her I would never come between her and her God. She said she had never thought I would.

Throughout the visit to Rome several of my friends noticed how close Hazel and I had become, and we were the pair who usually made sure that some emails were sent to Peter every night. But more than that we were really happy together and on the Sunday morning of the Papal audience in saint Peter’s square I felt the first stirings of religious or spiritual love moving me and in an odd way drawing me much closer to Hazel. On the last night I asked her,

My darling, where do we go from here? I want to marry you as soon as possible, it’s been very hard not making love to you, but I did promise. Can you teach me what I have to do to be able to marry you soon?

She gave me a lovely answer. “I am starting to feel a lot better already, John. Just carry on staying close to me and we’ll both get what we want very soon”.

And to show you just how true her words were we are incorporating pushing Peter round the eternal city after our exams in May, when he gets his wish, and we get our honeymoon.

Anton Wills-Eve

EXCUSE ME, MISS GOLDILOCKS I PRESUME.


<a href=”https://dailypost.wordpress.com/dp_prompt/daily-prompt-4/”>Hello, Goldilocks!</a>

EXCUSE ME, MISS GOLDILOCKS I PRESUME.

That time in the life of any young boy, if he has happy expectations of his future and finds joy in the romantic ignorance of his mid-teen years, which stays with him for the rest of his days, is the period during which he tries to choose his first girlfriend. Is this mental Venus a purely physical delight or has the dayspring of heartfelt love begun to burgeon in his breast? It differs, oh how it differs, for all of us. She is so unattainable that invariably a mental list of all her putative attractive qualities turns into a list that might even rival the catalogue aria in Don Giovanni. Mine never actually reached ‘une mille tre’ Spanish syrens, but then I doubt that anybody’s thoughts ever spread as far afield as that. No I was lucky, well for wordpress I was lucky, because at the first sixth form dance I went to when I was sixteen I had to select someone to take and it would be my first formal date.

Four weeks before the dance just three fifteen to sixteen year old girls still remained in my mind. That is three who knew my reputation for probably having a vocation to the priesthood and saw me as a challenge  for this very reason. Firstly, as for all of us, there was the ‘unattainable’. Madaleine Dubonnetemps, daughter of a ranking French dipilomat, was known to many of us as she went to the nearby convent, as did my sister. I thought this was a good way to get an early introduction. But sadly the ravishing Mademoiselle, and she really was ravishing, could not fit me in higher than sixteenth. Well I was always a determined suitor and at least got my sister to get me an introduction and I actually persuaded the French beauty to accompany me to a concert at the Royal Albert Hall. I adored the music, and dad’s contribution of two press seats in the best cricle also helped make the evening, but Madeleine seemed bored to tears. She explained, as her father’s chauffeur dropped us at the embassy afterwards, that she hated the music but appreciated the evening. The best she could say of it was, “You know how to select seats where everyone can admire you at least.”

I was begining to think that my last two choices would have to be more carefully considered before I actually approached them. Red head Sally Carmichael was known among many of my year to be a ‘goer’ whatever that meant in 1958. Certainly not what it means for that age group today. In fact I had often had a coffee with her and a few other friends after school, and we had much the same sense of humour which I knew was a must if I was to enjoy myself. However, I had never kissed a girl properly and suddenly, whenever I saw her,  I realised I did not  know how to rectify this. She LOOKED approachable, but what did you do then? In the films the heroine always hid her mouth from the camera at the last minute in those years of hypocritical censorship so I could never quite see what was going on. One evening on the way to the bus I actually summoned up the courage to hold her hand and give it a meaningfulful squeeze. She seemed quite pleased and snuggled up to me on the back seat for much of the journey. But sadly as as we reached her house she just waved at me and said, “You should have kissed me. I gave you enough time and chances!” This was in a very cross voice and naturally she was scrubbed from the list. That left Jane.

What do you say to a monosyllabic straight laced brunette who nevertheless had a pair of incredicbly seductive eyes and seemed to enjoy using them. She could put an incredible amount of expression into her facial gestures in general and would often seem pleased to be the centre of attention to any group of boys without having to speak to them. This proved the stumbling block in our friendship. On two consecutive evenings when we went out for a spaghetti or a film she assumed that I knew what she would have said if she could have been bothered to say it. Then, worst of all, she never laughed at my jokes. This I really could not take and with six days  (and no weekends) left to the ball it seemed as though I was going to play Cinders or at best some wilting wallflower who couldn’t have danced even if he had a partner.

My sister looked at me hopelessly. She had captured our school head boy and was very pleased with herself. But she did feel sorry for me. “We’re going to have to find you someone aren’t we”, she said  “look, you wouldn’t do me a favour and commit an enormous act of Christianity would you?” I asked her what she meant. Well it’s Nick Johnson’s sister, do you know her?”

“Only by reputation and the very occasional silent meeting,why?” I felt doomed because Linda Johnson had mid length straight hair. Linda Johnson also had an odd shaped snub nose. Linda Johnson wore glasses which did absolutely nothing for what looks she had, and most important of all it was known Linda Johnson had a stammer which greatly embarrassed her and also made conversation difficult and devoid of any hope of spotineity. I also had another awful thought when my kind hearted sister asked her favour. I said, “Sis. How do you think it is going to look if I make some feeble excuse for not asking her earlier, you know as though I actually wanted to take her, and wouldn’t it just make her feel like the object of an act of charity?”

The answer, to my surprise, was ‘no’. But the reason was terrible.  “She happens to be one of a lot of girls who think they have heard that you want to become a priest and so they would be only too happy to be your partner. If I told her that you were very worried because you felt you had to go but didn’t have a girlfriend, and I also thought you’d both like each other, I could make her think she was doing you a favour! That will please her and teach you not to appear so holy! But it will also explain why you can’t dance.” So two days later I rang Linda and asked her if she’d like to be my date, though not in those words. She stammered out a really gratfeul acceptance and a lot of my own friends wondered how I had been reduced to making such an invitation .

But where does Goldilocks come in? Well on collecting her at her house on the night of the school do I suddenly thought of the children’s story and smiled to myself. Who in their right mind would have taken one of the three bears? So I introduced myself very gently and with a big smile on my face. As she opened the door I said to her, “Excuse me, Miss Goldilocks, I presume?” She was lost, but not so much for words as the ability to say them. A lovely appreciative grin filled her much prettier face than I had remembered as she replied,  “Heavens! Y-y-yyo’re n-n-ot D-d-dadd-d-dy  B-b-b-ear are you? ” It was the best evening of my life and we could hardly last more than a couple of days at a time without seeing each other for our last two years at school.

The only reference she ever made to the stories of my presumed vocation were when we took the dance floor for the first time and she stammered, y-y-y-you c-c-ertain-n–ly d-d-dance l-l-ike a p-p-riest!” The kiss on her doorstep, then a cuddle on her sofa as her mother cleverly kept out of the way while we had a goodnight coffee, beat anything on the films. I mean I didn’t even know you could DO that, but Linda did. She still does.

Anton Wills-Eve 

OUR OWN PLACE


<a href=”https://dailypost.wordpress.com/dp_prompt/places/”>Places</a&gt;

continuing the story in my  post ‘the end of the line’ published March 13th.

     OUR OWN PLACE

 

The previous December when mum died and I had to return home to Barbados a few days before the end of my first term at Oxford, I received a Christmas card from my really close girl friend, well she was much more than that, although we were not lovers. All it said was, ‘thinking of you, praying for you, loving you. Mai. xxx’

This meant nothing at first other than how sorry she was I would not be meeting her family in London at Christmas as we had planned. But then, the day before I was due to fly back to Oxford I received this terrible shock. It was in the form of a brief but tear stained letter.

Remember our names for each other? ‘Peter the Great’ and ‘Come what Mai’? Well hold on to them my darling. They are all we have for the time being. I told my parents and family about you and showed them that lovely picture of us in our favourite place. That was when they realised you were not just West Indian, but coloured. Oh Peter, how can people be so cruel? I explained that being Chinese I could well be just as much a shock to your parents, but they would not listen. I asked what I should do, about my studies in particular. My father said he would take his belt to me, and my brothers would kill you before they allowed me near you again. Why, Peter? Why? My family merely said I was their daughter and must do what they said and that I had no say in the matter at all.

I have been banned from Oxford and they don’t care that I was studying medicine, like you. They didn’t care about sick people, their control over me came first and that was that. My father is going to ring my tutor tomorrow to say I am too ill to study and that will be the end of it. To make sure of this I will be virtually a prisoner in my home and not even allowed out to shop for three months, mum said. At least I have got in first with this letter to you and one to your friend Leroy, giving him my address. He is still in London and I know he will try to help somehow. Be careful, Peter. You will always be ‘Great’. I Love you. Mai. XXX”

As you can imagine I was badly shaken and could not think straight for a while, but then I looked at the time. Sunday or not it was only nine pm in Oxford and I rang our tutor to get my call in first. I was incredibly lucky, Dr.Lassiter was in his rooms and when he heard my story was absolutely furious. He is going to ring you now and tell you how he can help you, although he was none too sure. All he did know was that as you were over eighteen, and so your family were breaking the race relations act, then you could do whatever you wished. He was reporting the matter to the Dean and the Chancellor so that they could also get in before your father to make sure he understood your rights. Leroy will certainly keep an eye on you so I’m adding his mobile number if you need to text him (if you can).

I Do love you, ‘Come what Mai’, and always will. xxx. Moi.

I heard nothing from anyone before boarding the plane today, but here in London airport at 9.00am I have managed to get hold of Leroy. He tells me he has informed the police of what has happened and that they are checking with the authorities in Oxford. It seems Mai’s father did ring Dr.Lassiter and was told in no uncertain terms that she was returning to Oxford even if the police had to bring her. That is all I know but I have told Leroy to tell Mai to meet me in our favourite place this afternoon if she get’s back to University as we hope. This is a picture of where we loved to walk together. Leroy is calling round at her house later this morning.

 

Our Favourite hillside walk.

Our Favourite hillside walk.

 

You can see why we liked walking hand in hand down towards the lake in the distance. Well in the hope that she’ll make it I have bought a ring which I hope to put on her hand this afternoon. I have to go now or I won’t make Oxford in time myself.

————————————————————-

Just imagine the scene. it was almost exactly the same time of day as when I took this picture, about four in the afternoon. I had almost given up any hopes that Mai would turn up when she suddenly appeared , running towards me up the hill between those sunlit trees. We clung to each other for what seemed like ages and then she asked if we could sit on a tree stump as she had something important to tell me.

“Peter, dad was in a terrible rage when Leroy arrive, he thought it must be you. But Leroy was very clever and had a policeman with him. The constable assured dad this was just a friend from Oxford who was returning for the start of term and thought I might like a companion on the journey. I picked up the hint and nipped upstairs to collect my case which I had ready with everything I needed in it in the hope I could somehow get back to University. Dad told the constable I was not going but the officer produced a court order accusing dad of racial discrimination and then actually arrested him. Only mum was at home and couldn’t stop Leroy from leaving with me. I don’t know what will happen next. I saw Dr. Lassiter and explained how I had managed to return and the college has changed my accomodation to a very safe suite of rooms on the third floor where he promised I would be looked after. It’s really lovely Peter. He asked me to bring you back so we could all discuss things as they are now. Can we go?”

I smiled back and said ,”Not until you answer this question. Give me your hand, Mai. Here, slip this on and then tell me that you will marry me.” She gaped in happy surprise and kept her arms round my neck for several minutes before whispering.

“Of course I will, Peter. After all you are ‘The Great!'”

(to be continued soon)

Anton Wills-Eve

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

THE ONLY THING I KNOW I KNOW I KNOW.


<a href=”https://dailypost.wordpress.com/dp_prompt/i-want-to-know-what-love-is/”>I Want to Know What Love Is</a>

 

 THE ONLY THING I KNOW I KNOW I KNOW.

 

You know that spine tingling feeling you get when something great happens and every type of joy imaginable happens to you all at once? Well, that is love. So too is the wonderful feeling of gratitude when something you’ve wanted for so long suddenly happens, comes true or is given to you.

But thanks and ecstacy are not the only manifestations of love. There are moments of spiritual love that nobody can explain but which make us so pleased that the really good things in life can, and do, actually happen both to us and to our loved ones. And there goes another type of love. The feeling of being a part of a world and its society that can lift you up and make you cry with relief when something really bitterly evil and nasty is overthrown to the benefit of our colleagues and our friends.

The love that many people feel for their God is yet another totally inexplicable sensation, that of not being able to tell the whole world, as you feel you want to, that the maker of haven and earth is on your side and for once in your life you’ve done something to make Him happy. This is in the soul and the mind and quite beyond the understanding of even the person who experiences it.

But for most of us, I suppose the most unforgettable love in our lives is discovering that the boy, girl or any person whom we feel we cannot live without feels the same way about us, is the greatest human feeling or sensation there is. And the proof of this is its opposite: the awful sadness of discovering that the love of our lives does not reciprocate our feelings. You know, when romance turns into a waterfall of blinding mental tears which can last for ever and a day.

But the very fact that having felt as I have, my love being returned and remaining all my life with my wife, is the proof that I can honestly say that love is the only thing I know I know I know.

 

Anton Wills-Eve

THE END OF THE LINE


   <a href=”https://dailypost.wordpress.com/dp_prompt/twenty-five/”>Twenty-Five</a> 

answer to a prompt in which I have chosen not to use the letter ‘U’.

 

 THE END OF THE LINE

When we first met at the railway station at Oxford I clearly remember the color of that almost jet black hair. I was taken aback as I had never seen a Chinese person before and was finding it hard believing it was really shining, black and so pretty all at the same time. I was both mystified and captivated.
     My good friend, Leroy, was with me; he was descended from West Indian grandparents. He told me the  only Asians he had ever seen were Indians and Pakistanis. We both agreed that this was very odd. I mean, think of it. Arriving in Oxford from London and we had never seen a Chinese! Well that was one for the record books. However, I decided to get to know my Asian girl as well as possible that first term at Balliol College, and  Boy! did we have a great time.

     Remember that party at Jimmy’s? Everybody can recall the first time they had alcohol, but  in this case it was very strange. We had three dances to a Chinese pentatonic beat with me doing a dance nobody had ever seen before. The lyrics were a joke as we didn’t know them properly and some lines were almost obscene.  And as the weeks went by something lovely began to happen. We went to the same concerts, gigs, parties and had dinner together more and more.

     By this time we called each other by tender nicknames. I was ‘Peter the Great’ and  was falling ever more deeply in love with my ‘Come What Mai’. I wondered what a Chinese family might make of me when I met them at Christmas as we had arranged. Mai told me not to worry. She was certain their  love for her, added to my smiling and cheerful personality were going to make us all hit it off really well together.

     However, I’ll never know if we might have done for a week before the end of term I received news that my mother had died and I had to go back home to Barbados at once. Apparently, when Mai’s relatives heard she had fallen for a West Indian they forbade her to go back to Oxford or even get in contact with me ever again.

 

Anton Wills-Eve  

Dear Jane


In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Audience of One.”

<a href=”https://dailypost.wordpress.com/dp_prompt/audience-of-one/”>Audience of One</a>

Dear Jane,

Why did you walk away when I called out to you that last day at school? All I wanted to do was say goodbye. Was that too much to let me do, or did you not want to hear me say it? Did you really love me after all but just could not bring yourself to admit it? I mean what did I do apart from kiss Linda a little too passionately without realising you were watching? That and you finding me in flagrante delicto with Jennifer under our favourite tree in the orchard? 

Teenage moments of loss of will power, that’s all they were. Honestly. I know you wanted to have me all to yourself, well I understand that. But what I don’t understand is why you thought such occasional moments of carnal enjoyment meant any more to me than your affair with Tommy nine months ago. Now that was a really passionate  and prolonged surrender to your  craving for physical satisfaction. But I told you I understood, I forgave you. I promised I’d never bring the subject up again. But Jane, you’ve left me no choice. I was really hurt when you wouldn’t even look at me as you walked away. Have you any idea what the difference is between loving someone and just wanting to MAKE love ? Have you? It’s all the difference in the world. 

And what am I supposed to do now if I want to find you again and try to convince you of my undying romantic affection? We often shared a joke, both enjoyed the same music and films and even went to the same church. What stopped you wanting us to become a happy couple for the rest of our lives? Was it perhaps the child I had through Pat, who would not even allow me to see my own son believing I  had only ‘had it off for fun’, and  saying  I thought ‘having a baby might be a lark’? Do you remember that terrible court scene when I lost the right to even see my own flesh and blood? You were very sorry for me then and helped me. Why not now?

And what about that night I caught you hugging  Wendy behind the gym and you pretended it was just because you wanted to find out what it would be like! Eh? Really Jane, I’ve always given you the benefit of the doubt why couldn’t you give me a break? I know you don’t even read my blogs, Celia told me after she saw you last month. What other medium have I got to contact you through when you never answer the phone, reply to emails or allow me to visit your house? Please give me one more chance. It could work, really it could. Or have you found another Tommy or Frank and forgotten all about me?  Jane, at least put me out of my misery and tell me. Please. Just acknowledge this letter with a yes or a no and I’ll try to start a new life if I have to. I do love you. Carole.      

Anton Wills-Eve

A Day To Die For


Feeling Fancy

My own little Sally was looking thinner and weaker each day. It seemed almost impossible to believe that in a matter of months, maybe weeks or even after tomorrow, I’d never see her again. Well not in this life anyway. And she was fighting her cancer with such determination. Determination not to upset me by letting me see how much pain she was really in. Then an incredible thing happened. I still cannot quite believe it. But it happened all the same. I was offered as much money as I wanted to give her a day we’d both never forget.

Imagine how I felt. I could plan a really super day for her, and to see her as happy as she could be would be the greatest luxury I could buy. But what do you lay on for a bed-ridden, pain-racked girl of just twenty nine summers who could not even keep her food down. I had only a few hours left, as well, to think up a magical twenty four hours for her. My mind drifted back over all the things we’d enjoyed so much in the ten years we’d known each other.

Her greatest love was classical music, especially piano music, and when looking through the main concerts on in London the next day I saw that one of her favourite pianists was playing Brahm’s first piano concerto at the Albert Hall. Now that really would have been the centre piece of a great day out for Sally. But it was a non-starter as I was thinking of it. It was such a shame because she loved good food too and I would have booked a table at our favourite restaurant which stayed open most nights until after midnight.

Imagine Sally sipping a delicate Marsala as an aperitif and smiling in that lovely, loving way of hers as I downed my Campari. It was odd how similar our taste’s were too. We’d start with a plate of oysters and wash them down with a white Burgundy, a Montrachet 2002. Then our joint favourite steak dish,tournedos Rossini with pommes frites and a mixture of fried mushrooms, tomatoes and chopped red cabbage. If we drank a 2007 Crozes-Hermitage with this we knew we’d be in gastronomic heaven. We were never gluttons and would just leave enough wine to accompany some really soft Camembert to finish. Naturally an Armagnac with a coffee would help us relax at the end of a wonderful day.

Are you wondering how we would have started the morning? I am not writing this in the wrong order or anything like that, just telling it like it came into my mind as I planned what I wished I could do.Sally always liked taking me with her when she went shopping so of course after a couple of croissants and coffee I thought we would quickly make our way to Oxford Street or Knightsbridge and let her spend as much as she liked on any clothes she wanted, but most importantly a really stunning outfit for the evening. I knew she would insist on me doing the same. I could just see my little love going spare as colours did not quite match, or ludicrously high price tags were about to be rejected and then the realisation she could have whatever she liked lighting up her face and garments way beyond her usual reach suddenly being added to her wardrobe.

Such an expedition would eat up the hours but I would enjoy decking her out in all the finery she wanted just as much as she would enjoy wearing it. The addition of a gourmet snack for lunch at Harrods, where I allowed us a bottle of champagne, Laurent Perrier Grand Siecle, which would sooth our palates and could never spoil our appetites for later that evening, would make a pleasant break around lunchtime. But she would force me to visit Hawes and Curtis to replenish my stock of shirts and ties and then a quick visit to Regent Street for a couple of jackets, pairs of slacks and suits as well as a complete new evening suit and bow tie for the concert.

This would all take up a lot of time, despite the numerous taxi rides, but we would just have time to relax with a cosy cuddle at the flat before getting dressed to go out.I sat pondering this lovely, impossible day. I even rang the ticket agent to find I could book a box for the concert, just one left. Oh Sally would have been on cloud nine. But no way could my wonderful day be arranged.

As usual that evening I took my supper up to her room and lay on the bed as she sipped a cup of soup and twice had to press her morphine injector on her wrist to conceal her agony. I freely admit that as I made sure she had had all her medication and I had tucked her up for the night, I could feel a tear running unstoppably down my cheek. I just looked at her as I got into bed and saw the clock was showing eleven fifty five. Our ‘never to be forgotten’ day would start in five minutes.

I turned to her and as I went to kiss her goodnight she raised a weak but silken arm up to my face and said, “Darling. Kiss me. Please. Like you used to. Her soft mouth on mine was filled with more love and tenderness than I had ever known. I put my arm round her shoulders to return her love and the clock in our hall struck midnight. As our beautiful day began my georgeous girl went limp in my arms and her beautiful face fell across mine as she took her last breath. She was dead.

I couldn’t let go of her, she meant too much to me. But I would like to thank my unknown benefactor for giving me that lovely, lovely day which I never actually had with a girl whom I will never see again until God reunites us in Heaven.

Oh, and dear unknown benefactor. Please give all that money to those in need. I no longer have any need of it at all.

Anton Wills-Eve