To Willing Conflators Of Jeremy Todd And Jamaica Kincaid (twenty third letter)

Dear Friends,
She has gone far away from her family.  Maybe she thought she was going to a place of uncommon natural beauty, where everyone was filled with love and trust and greeted each other with the word “Peace”.  She’s definitely ended up meeting me regardless.  We sit in transit and eat our food.
As a present she gives me a notebook that she bought in Italy a long time ago.  She has found it while going through her old things.  The cover is of leather, dyed blood red, and the pages are white and smooth like milk.  When I first meet her, only about a year earlier, I feel as though my life is once again stretching out ahead of me, as much as it did twenty years before, like a book of blank pages.  As she gives me the book, I am reminded of this, and I ascribe this remembrance to her.  I have come to love her as she speaks to me of women and art, archives and ideas, and of course, history.  When we temporarily say goodbye on this occasion, I realize I may never be able to tell her this.
I am alone at home one night a little later on.  My wife and son are visiting with friends.  I do all sorts of little things:  I wash my underwear, scrub the stove, wash the bathroom floor, trim my nails, arrange the closets, make sure my old disposable razor is replaced.  When I go to bed, I lie there with the light on doing nothing.  I see the book she has given me.  It’s on the night table next to my bed.  Beside it is my fountain pen full of beautiful blue ink.  I pick up both and I open the book.
At the top of the page I write my full name:  Jeremy Gordon Todd.  At the sight of it, many thoughts rush through me, but I can only write down this:  “I wish I could love someone so much that I would die from it.”  And then as I look at this sentence a great wave of shame comes over me and I weep and weep so much that the tears fall on the page and cause all the words to become one great blur.