What We Talk About When We Talk About Love
How we cite our quotes:
"What do any of us really know about love?" Mel said. "It seems to me we're just beginners at love." (56)
The title of Raymond Carver's original draft of this story, "Beginners," takes its name from this line. If the story were still called "Beginners," would that change the way you read it?
"I'd get up to his mouth-hole […] and he'd say no, it wasn't the accident exactly but it was because he couldn't see her through his eye-holes. He said that was what was making him feel so bad. Can you imagine? I'm telling you, the man's heart was breaking because he couldn't turn his goddamn head and see his goddamn wife." (75)
Ah, true love. You know it when you see it. And it, in this case, is an old dude, who looks like a mummy, who's heartbroken because he can't turn his head from side to side. Well, based on the rest of this story, with all its conflicting notions of love, this sounds like as good a definition as any.