::Literate Blather::
Tuesday, January 08, 2008
Reginald, the Pretentious Creepy Guy from Your Writing Class, Sends You a Love Letter

Bonjour, Mademoiselle:

I’ve seen the way you discern me when you believe my attention is avert elsewhere. It reminds me of how Elizabeth Bennett made puppy dog eyes at Mr. Darcy when they first met at a ball (I’ve read “Pride and Prejudice” at least a dozen times and savor each morsel of Austen’s masterpiece). Last week, after I recited my acclaimed poem “Future Day Romeo and Juliet” (which is seriously being considered for publication by the online literary journal Yo! Poems!), I once again saw you turn those remarkable green eyes in my direction.

Was it the enchantment of my verse?

“The twosome began to necessitate each other,

In every solitary way,

Even though her parents damned it,

They wildly, sweatily fornicated each and every day.”

Or was it the fresh lavender highlights in my hair? I sense in a spiritual way that Mr. Darcy would have approved. Don’t think you’ve gone unnoticed in your little front corner seat, all earnest and huffy. Do I detect a slight infatuation with Mr. Woodbury? I certainly hope not. He may be a published novelist (although his first two volumes are out of print), but that astringent has-been wouldn’t understand modern poetry if it crept up on him and nibbled on his rather plump derriere.

But it depresses me to discuss that cad.

I’d rather converse about you. I don’t want to be forward (he said slyly), but you look exquisite in those damnable Cashmere sweaters you’re so fond of. They embrace you the way I imagine Odysseus must have hugged Penelope after he slaughtered her suitors. Unfortunately, I’m not quite as captivated by your hair (I don’t want to be brass, but you might want to consider a new coiffeur).

In fact, your hair makes you look like a frisky Meg Ryan in the film “When Harry Met Sally” (I don’t want to be “low-brow” but the film is perhaps Rob Reiner’s most splendid feature). With a new style, I think you could be the twin of French actress Martine Carol (a classic blond beauty who starred in the obscure French classic Lola Montès).

So sparks (perhaps ignited by our clandestine passions?) seem to be crackling between us. Please don’t be troubled about the scandalous rumors that I’ve been involved with Jenny Carmichael (who writes those excruciating fantasy stories. My God do I despise J.R.R. Tolkien and all that he has unleashed!). Jenny and I had one measly date – shortly after my hospitalization -- which I barely managed to survive unscathed. Obviously she’s attracted to my intellect and I found it difficult to evade her advances (I’m a man as well as an artist, but I can assure you in this decade of AIDS I protected myself – so please do not fret about my being impure). Needless to say, I have broken it off with her. Never date anyone who knows more about elves than Proust!

I can tell that you possess a singular quality (and not just because I caught you ogling me last Thursday). I’m captivated by the way you raise your hand in class (my gracious – who does that anymore?)! I’m taken with the way you nervously nibble on your bottom lip before having to read in front of the class. Or the way you carefully adjust your bra when you think no one is watching. Are you signaling me? Is this a message to me? I feel that it is which is why I’m putting pen to paper. You are the Juliet of my poem:

“His visage in her vanity mirror gave her a gasp;

She dropped her blood-colored lipstick on her dresser,

He vaulted over her window sill and dash to her,

His tongue flickering and ready to French kiss her.”

I’ve been disheartened lately (my 300,000-word novel about the failures of the French Revolution was rejected by a major publisher and my cat Fortinbras recently passed away). I don’t desire your sympathy – only your enduring affection. I believe we are kindred spirits who worship literature and poetry and are ready to take the arts by tempest. Please, my secret darling, consent to a steaming cup of low-fat Cappuccino with me! Or just play with your bra in class tonight and I’ll know you’re thinking about me.

Vôtre dans la passion!


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