Before I can call it my own, I need to figure out what it is. Did I know it before? Or am I only realizing it now in a new and different frame of reference? It is different: Now love and passion carry no social preconceptions and assumptions, no constructs, stereotypes, restrictions, proscriptions or expectations. My friend suggests I am “experiencing passion of a type hitherto unknown…unfettered by any external restraints for perhaps the first time in [my] life. It is something new and exciting, and yet it comes…late in life.”
I wondered if this would happen. Do gay men seek frequent anonymous encounters to perhaps someday find love? Well, as far as I can tell, not entirely. They do it because it feels good. Some probably want that special love, others not so much, and many want both.
So I wondered if there was a special guy out there, and what would happen if we met. There is, and what happened rocked my world. I’m too damn old to be mooning like a school girl…and yet moon I do. I’ve given myself over to it: love fueled by significant passion.
It’s no wonder I get the two confused. Does love require sexual passion? Certainly sexual passion does not require love. Yet sexual passion is vastly different, more intense and meaningful when motivated by love. So they’re the same yet different? They’re complimentary. Is it a chicken and an egg thing? Is it all semantics?
I do wonder how the hell it happened. I believe my lover and I are sexually compatible on a fundamental personality level. I previously never could conceptualize or articulate that although masculine, I am sexually submissive to sexual domination. My man is very sexually dominant, which suits me just fine. That deeply personal relationship is the first fundamental of my passion. And that passion is ironically the foundation for what is turning into…love. Oh, dear…
“Did I lie about what would happen to you?” asked my lover.
“Not at all,” I answered. “How did you know me so well so early?”
“I knew you would cave in to any real man who strongly seduced you and could back it up with powerful sex.”
That’s too much information, right? Outside the box from the get-go, gay men are forthright about sex.
Yeah, but “love?” Isn’t that a leap? Apparently not. Although I recognize the symptoms, I am blind-sided, gobsmacked. I am no longer practiced at the logistics and mechanics of love. It’s been a long time since I felt myself “in love,” a situation in which I thought never to find myself again. It’s been longer still since I tried to write about it. Yet I love and I am in love. Jeez…
So love and passion are inextricably interwoven. They appear in different ratios. Casual sexual encounters are high in passion but low on actual love. Love enhances passion, which can occur in varying degrees and probably changes over time. In my case, passion came first and drew me in like coming home, like something I’d wanted my whole life but didn’t know how to articulate.
It’s different this time around because it is real. It has nothing to do with whatever expectations I experienced with women. This time I can tell my feeling arises from deep in who I am. I am homosexual and for the first time in my life, I am in love with a man. Passion and love.
And none of this is apparently affected by age or the wisdom commonly attributed to it. Love and passion are as exciting and imponderable as they have been my whole life. I guess that’s why poets are the only ones good at talking about it.