Poder, sexo, amor, ambição, derrotas, quedas, trambolhões, é de sobra o que pode complicar a existência ou torná-la fora de série. Ainda bem que a maioria das vidas segue num ramerrão de hábitos, apetites, banalidades, horas certas, obediência à lei e aos costumes. Dos que escapam à rotina só eles próprios poderão dizer como na realidade foi e se valeu a pena. Para os outros fica a imaginação.
O que segue são excerptos do conto de Jeanette Winterson All I know about Gertrud Stein, publicado na Granta em 2011, e que nessa altura li. Tem a ver com amor e paixão. Reli-o agora numa perspectiva diferente e alguma estranheza, perguntando-me o que entretanto aconteceu ao mundo ou se a idade me tira a escama dos olhos. O itálico é o do texto original.
“In 1907 a woman from San Francisco named Alice. B. Toklas arrived in Paris. She was going to meet a fellow American living there already. She was excited because she’d heard a lot about Gertrud Stein… Alice Toklas had no previous experience of love… Gertrud Stein and her brother Leo had long since left the USA to set up house in Paris in the rue de Fleurus… But Gertrud was lonely.
I do very badly without a lover. I pine, I sigh, I sleep, I dream, I set the table for two and stare in the empty chair… Sometimes I have affairs. But though I enjoy the bed, I feel angry about the fraud; the closeness without the cost. I know what the cost is: the more I love you, the more I feel alone.
On 23 May 1907 Gertrud Stein met Alice B. Toklas.
Gertrud: Fat, sexy, genial, powerful.
Alice: A tiny unicorn, nervous, clever, watchful, determined.
We were both survivors of other shipwrecks. You looked sad. I wanted to see you again.
For a while we corresponded by email, charming each other in fonts and pixels. Did you…do you… would you like to… I wonder if…
The Stein and Toklas love affair was about sex… They talked about The Taming of the Shrew… not a poster-play for feminism.
Gertrud: A wife hangs upon her husband – that is what Shakspeare says.
Alice: But you never married.
Gertrud: I would like a wife… When al is said one is wedded to bed.
It was the begining of their love affair.
Women used to be in charge of love – it was our hole domain, the business of our lives, to give love, to make love to mend love tot end love…,
Alice Toklas never went back to San Francisco. They were together everyday for the next forty years… and they never stopped having sex.
Gertrud Stein liked giving Alice an orgasm – she called it ‘making a cow come out’. Nobody knows why – unless Alice made moo noises when she hit it. Gertrud said, ‘I am the best cow-giver in the world.’
I don’t think we talk about love in real terms anymore. We talk about partnership. We talk about romance. We talk about sex. We talk about divorce. I don’t think we tal about love at all.”
É um belo conto. Estes excerptos pouco dizem, dão apenas ideia de que possivelmente todo o amor é único, uma caminhada a dois, feita por vezes em solidão.