Vera called. The one time I pick up the phone without seeing who it is, and it’s HER. Damn…
After 16 years, she calls me up to do her and her new boyfriend a favor. She’s happy, because he’s out on parole now, and they want to get married. I swear it’s true.
LOVE WILL HAVE IT’S WAY
I met Vera when I was young and stupid, an Assistant Pastor in a little country church in Louisiana. This town wasn’t even on the parish maps, population 50 or something like that. One of my prime functions there was to keep peace between the local gris gris woman and the Episcopalian pastor. I guess being semi-Pentecostal was regarded as being somewhere between the two enough to act as moderator. The Episcopalian liked me because I’d been to school and could read Greek and Hebrew. Mama gris gris liked me because she’d heard me pray for people and decided I had “the juice”. I thought they were both ok in their way. I liked the Voodoo woman more though. She had cool parties.
Vera took one look at me and saw her ticket out of town. She was the ninth of eleven children. The family was very proud of the fact that several of the kids had finished high school. In this community unemployment ran to about 60%. Alcoholism ran to about the same figures. Unwed mothers were far more common than wed ones, and drug trafficking was a primary source of income. It kept the local economy moving. I think she liked me, but mostly she thought I could get her out of town. I would have been desperate to get out too, if I hadn’t been such a do gooder. But I liked the attention she gave me, a lot. All I had to do was close my eyes and picture a man and I was in Heaven. We got married in less than six months and moved far away from her family. I knew they were bad, but I didn’t know how bad until later.
One side of her was breathtakingly sweet, like an angel. I really loved her. I privately thought that if I could love her enough, I wouldn’t have to psyche myself to make love to her.
She was so shy she wouldn’t let me see her in the bathroom for the first several weeks we were together. She would wait ’til I left the house. I only caught her because I had to come back in to retrieve a forgotten item. After that, I couldn’t go to the toilet alone. One thing I’ve never understood about women is the tendency to view going to the toilet as a social event.
Late on she morphed into something like Travis in Taxi Driver, over on the dark side. Since Vera, I’ve had some wildly exciting weekends with Travis types, but a psychotic woman with an automatic weapon is just unappealing to me. When it’s a guy, I want to meet him. I secretly have this idea in my mind that I just know I can make him happy enough to straighten out all those murderous little quirks in his character(No worries, I generally restrain myself in time).When it’s a woman, I just turn and walk away.
At first I felt guilty that I had to think of men to make love to her, but after a while I just accepted it. The sex was earthshaking, too. She would squeal and scream like a banshee, while I moaned and roared like a wounded lion. We would go into this whole body clench thing, screaming and moaning, waking the neighbors in the next apartments. The next day they would give each other Significant Looks as we walked by. It was great.
Vera desperately wanted a baby. I think she believed it would redeem her past. But cruelly, she had an early miscarriage. I came home from work to find her on the edge of the bed crying. I’m pretty sure she believed that God was punishing her for what she considered the sins of her youth. I just held her for a long, long time.
After that though, things went downhill pretty rapidly. She got into crack, and decided she liked it. There was this fellow in the neighborhood, who liked to help out girls with their need. It seems he had this “service”.
Before too long, Vera was turning tricks for crack. Once, I had to go get her when it turned into an ugly scene. Another time I came back home and caught her with a trick in our bed. The guy managed to get out through the bathroom window. A few times I answered the door to find strangers asking for Vera. This kind of stuff went on for a little while, before she blew out of town with her dealer/pimpdaddy.
After that, for me it was pretty much over. I didn’t really hate her, because I knew how hard she had tried, before she gave up. She came from a family of incest. Daddy had played with all of his little girls, and there were 6 girls, and 5 boys. She despised herself and worshipped her Daddy. She also believed God hated her. I hate superstition.
But I also kind of blamed myself, for not wanting her physically. It was a long time before I found out just how common that is with guys.
But for sure I didn’t want her back. I felt like I did everything I could to hold it together, and I was done with it.
A friend of mine had some friends in the DEA, and they fixed it so I could get an annulment. Vera just disappeared for the next several years, which is easy to do in rural Louisiana.
THE END OF THE STORY
Fifteen years later, and she calls up, wanting me to go down to the courthouse in Tucson, and pick up a copy of the annulment decree, so she can get married to her new demon lover.
I wonder what he thinks about when they’re together? Maybe I should pull him off to the side and find out. He’s a bad boy, it could be fun. What a way to get revenge.
Nah… I don’t want to stir that kettle again.
It never ends.
Look closely at this. I think you’ll be amazed.
P.S. This was originally posted May 13, 2006. I’ve added some detail to the original, and changed the graphics.