How You Know
How do you know if it’s love? she asks,and I think if you have to ask, it’s not,but I know this won’t help. I want to sayyou’re too young to worry about it,as if she has questions about Medicareor social security, but this won’t help either.“You’ll just know” is a lie, and one truth,“when you still want to be with themthe next morning,” would involve toomany follow-up questions. The difficultywith love, I want to say, is sometimesyou only know afterwards that it’s arrivedor left. Love is the elephant and weare the blind mice unable to understandthe whole. I want to say love is thisdesire to help even when I know I can’t,just as I couldn’t explain electricity, stars,the color of the sky, baldness, tornadoes,fingernails, coconuts, or the other thingsshe has asked about over the years, allthose phenomena whose daily existenceseems miraculous. Instead I shake my head.I don’t even know how to match my socks.Go ask your mother. She laughs and says,I did. Mom told me to come and ask you.
This made me laugh-I like that; I don’t even know how to match my socks. / Go ask your mother.