Lost light

There is no end of things in the heart.

Somebody once told me that. She said it came from a poem she believed in. She understood it to mean that if you took something to heart, really brought it inside those red velvet folds, then it would always be there for you. No matter what happened, it would be there waiting. She said this could mean a person, a place, a dream. A mission. Anything sacred. She told me that it is all connected in those secret folds. Always. It is all part of the same and will always be there, carrying the same beat as your heart.

I am fifty-two years old and I believe it. At night when I try to sleep but can’t, that is when I know it. It is when all the pathways seem to connect and I see the people I have loved and hated and helped and hurt. I see the hands that reach for me. I hear the beat and see and understand what I must do. I know my mission and I know there is no turning away or turning back. And it is in those moments that I know there is no end of things in the heart.

1

The last thing I expected was for Alexander Taylor to answer his own door. It belied everything I knew about Hollywood. A man with a billion-dollar box-office record answered the door for nobody. Instead, he would have a uniformed man posted full-time at his front door. And this doorman would only allow me entrance after carefully checking my identification and appointment. He would then hand me off to a butler or the first-floor maid, who would walk me the rest of the way in, footsteps falling as silent as snow as we went.

But there was none of that at the mansion on Bel-Air Crest Road. The driveway gate had been left open. And after I parked in the front turnaround circle and knocked on the door, it was the box-office champion himself who opened it and beckoned me into a home whose dimensions could have been copied directly from the international terminal at LAX.

Taylor was a large man. Over six feet and 250 pounds. He carried it well, though, with a full head of curly brown hair and contrasting blue eyes. The hair on his chin added the highbrow look of an artist to this image, though art had very little to do with the field in which he toiled.

He was wearing a soft blue running suit that probably cost more than everything I was wearing. A white towel was wrapped tightly around his neck and stuffed into the collar. His cheeks were pink, his breathing heavy and labored. I had caught him in the middle of something and he seemed a little put out by it.

I had come to the door in my best suit, the ash gray single-breasted I had paid twelve hundred dollars for three years before. I hadn’t worn it in over nine months and that morning I had needed to dust off the shoulders after taking it out of the closet. I was clean-shaven and I had purpose, the first I had felt since I put the suit on that hanger so many months before.

“Come in,” Taylor said. “Everybody’s off today and I was just working out. Lucky the gym’s just down the hall or I probably wouldn’t have even heard you. It’s a big place.”

“Yes, that was lucky.”

He moved back into the house. He didn’t shake my hand and I remembered that from the time I first met him four