‘I don’t believe in Love as an abstract,’ said 20-year-old me, probably over a pint and a cigarette in the Student Union bar. After all, I knew everything then.
What I think I meant was I didn’t believe in romantic love as a thing that is fired with an arrow and makes your eyes go all heart-shaped. What I probably meant was I don’t think anyone will ever love me. What I definitely meant was I have no idea what I’m talking about but I want to sound grown up and cynical and cool.
Today, the times are interesting. Every news report, every announcement, every result of every vote, tells something worse. Alliances drifting. Barricades building. Scrote-bags soliloquizing. The times are interesting and the times are frightening. War is coming. I hope it isn’t. God, I hope it isn’t. But it feels like it is.
I fear for my girls. My little, clever, funny girls. These future women. For them I don’t accept these boundaries that close in around this tiny, stupid island. These girls will fight – but they will not be canon fodder. They will not be pussy to be grabbed. This love is not gentle; this love is not kind. This love is fierce. It is war.
And Trulove – a silly, soppy name made up for its initial. I don’t believe in the magic powers of true love’s kiss. But I do, really. This love is a life-raft in roiling seas. It’s sanity in the madness.
So, what makes us get out of bed these mornings? What makes us able to do the things that must be done, and must be done again? What makes one foot move in front of the other? What fears war and makes it?
It’s Love, of course. My eyes are all heart-shaped (and, for now, my fingers are in my ears).