- And you think that's good?
- It overcomes instinct. Instintcs push us into fighting for survival. Like the pols ringing all the campuses. Survival of ourselves at the expense of other; each of us claws his way up. I can give you a good example. My twenty-first husband, Frank. We were married for six months. During that time he stopped loving me and became horribly unhappy. I still loved him; I wanted to remain with him, but it was hurting him. So I let him go. You see? It was better for him, and because I loved him that's what counted. See?
- But, why is it good to go against the instinct for self-survival?
- You don't think I can say.
- Because the instinct for survival loses in the end. With every living creature, mole, rat, human, frog. Even frogs who smoke cigars and play chess. You can never accomplish what your survival instincts sets out to do, so ultimately your striving ends in failure and you succumb to death, and that ends it. But if you love you can fade out and watch--
- I'm not ready to fade out.
- ...You can fade out and watch with happiness, and with cool, mellow, alpha contentment, the highest form of cotentment, the living on of one of those you love.
- But they die too.
- True... It's better not to love so that never happens to you. Even a pet, a dog or a cat. As you pointed out: you love them and they perish. If the death of a rabbit is bad... But you can grieve. Grief is the most powerful emotion a man or child or animal can feel. It's a good feeling.
- In what fucking way?
- Grief causes you to leave yourself. You step outside your narrow little pelt. And you can't feel grief unless you've love before it. Grief is the final outcome of love, because it's love lost. You do understand; I know you do. But you just don't want to think about it. It's the cyrcle of love completed: to love, to lose, to feel grief, to leave, and then to love again.
Grief is awareness that you will have to be alone and there is nothing beyond that because being alone is the ultimate final destiny of each individual living creature. That's what death is, the great loneliness.
- Are you frightened by it?
- Yes. Consciousness of unconsciouness, if you dig what I mean. When we do die we won't feel it because that's what dying is, the loss of all that. So, for example, I'm not at all scared fo dying anymore not after that bad trip. But to grieve; It's to die and be alive at the same time. The most absolute, overpowering experience you can feel, therefore.
Sometimes I swear we weren't constructed to go through such a thing; it's too much. Your body damn near self-destructs with all that heaving and surging. But I want to feel grief, to have tears."
FLOW MY TEARS, THE POLICEMAN SAID.