behind the altar to experience dire moments of relational
desires, and true love, as two very different personalities battle to
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Grace felt tears of empathy
begin to wet her cheeks while a knot of pain grew in her chest. She
could not speak, even to acknowledge him. She could do no more than
stare at his pain- ravaged face. She wished desperately for the
strength to tell him that she did indeed understand – more than he
might ever know.
Instinctively, she rose and tenderly
drew Sal to her. She kissed him lightly on his wet cheek to comfort
him, like a child who had skinned a knee. Thus embraced, they looked
like a gay, sparkling, red and green Christmas ornament.
They remained still, clutching each other, for moments that seemed like
in time with the music, they began to move together, embracing the
whispered rhythms of a Jackie Gleason ensemble. Unsteadily at first,
then smooth and soft in a silent, benign sort of intercourse.