My guard is down tonight, fatigue I guess. By the time I do Espresso for the second time today…my Dad cooking for me…I want to suspend time. I want him to stay in my kitchen, peeling the ends off the rapini, patiently. And Tony gets me tonight. The lost love. The mix of experiences he came from. i know who has freckles on his shoulders like a boy. I know what happened in Beacon’s Hill park. Parts of me gone and yet not. Memories I spin into fiction that all come from something beautiful and painful and worth reliving. Worth celebrating. Worth mourning. Worth missing. Worth immortalizing. We all loved once. We all loved.Unknown

My Mom gets concerned when I run this show for too long. She sees what it takes out of me. These semi-autobiographical things.

After the show I stand by my mirror pulling out my pins and…darn it. I can’t quite be cool. I have to cover my eyes and shut out the world for a few minutes. Stupid tears pour down my face and I don’t want Rob or Lois to see because honestly, for the love of God, I’m fine, and we’ve all had a big week. And haven’t we all had enough of Lucia lately?! It’s embarrassing. I flutter my eyes open. I feel arms around me. Rob has snuck up silently to embrace me. I smile to myself. “Aw, man, this guy. He’s still in character, Amante, the embodiment of love.”. I love Rob so much. He’s in. That’s it. I’m gone. He’s a brother to me. Screw emotional transference. How can I not feel gratitude and love for someone who takes the time to understand this story? To embody it with such respect and compassion? Someone who brings my Dad’s voice back to life for me? Someone who undresses me when I am too numb struck to speak? It is intimate. It is an act of love. I don’t care. Rob, like Todd, is now family. That’s just the way it is. And I’m okay with that investment. Those are pretty damn awesome adoptive brothers.

I head out to the lobby and I am very surprised to see John and Jen there. She just lost her Dad this month and I didn’t expect her to come see a play that would hit so close to home. “That’s why I came”, she whispers when she hugs me.

Later she writes, “My heart was cracked open again tonight. Grief took a big sigh and breathed out fresh tears over my dad’s passing mixed with the excruciating gratitude of having been with him in his final days then witnessing his last breaths, the sIMG_1093udden fragility of a strong life. Remembering, on a cellular level, the sweet times as well as the battles. There were moments just in the last hour when the tears and sobs could not be held at bay. I welcomed it… and was held, by my rock, as it happened. Then held again through another wave. Sometimes we need a sweet trigger to open the gates. Sometimes that trigger is art. Sometimes that art is a play, a story, a heart wide open. I was breathless and belly-laughed and couldn’t find tissues fast enough through Espresso tonight. Lucia Frangione, thank you for writing from your soul and showing it on stage. I’m so glad that being human involves so much feeling and expression. What a gift.” Jenn MacLean-Angus.


So worth everything.

I head out to have a drink with friends I haven’t seen for a while: s bevy of beautiful young actresses with a couple of lovely husband fellows in tow. Then I head home. Alone. Yeah. There is that.

I wander out to my garden. I have been wondering whether I should dig out my wisteria and admit it is dead. I thought it survived the transplanting because it did sprout some new shoots last fall. But this spring, nothing nothing nothing. A dark shrivelled trunk. No life. No leaves. This wisteria has meant too much to me. It is all about second chances. It is all about Jeremy and Italy and Anita and hope and new home making and finding love again. I was damn depressed when I saw that thing die. I took it as a bad omen. Silly. I know. I should have planted something less temperamental. But tonight – MY GOD – it can’t be – ! A bunch of green shoots out of the ground at the root and a big fat green bud on the end of what I thought was a dead tree.

Oh the life that is there that I cannot see.

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  1. Leah

    ah, Lucia, thank you so much for sharing this.
    i have been feeling empty, old and used up lately, and your image of the bud reminded me of a Lectio Divina meditation i did on Psalm 1 a few years ago when i was feeling like a shrivelled up old tree with nothing left to give. here is verse 3 (slightly paraphrased) – “She is like a tree planted by streams of water which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither. Whatever she does propers.”
    no matter how old i feel in my spirit, God’s Spirit is watering me and showing me that i still have fruit to bear. This was a much needed remembrance for me today, and particularly apt since it is Pentecost. thank you!

    1. Lucia Frangione

      Beautiful Leah, and so true xoxo

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