The opposite of death is desire

Tennessee Williams was a Virgo and it has often been speculated that Blance Dubois, the vainglorious doomed heroine of A Streetcar Named Desire was a female version of the playwright, or at least represented his emotional life.

He made Blanche a Virgo and sharing her sign, I have all had the thought that we really are all Blanches. The difference among us is how we play her. Williams seems to written the blueprint to our souls which we instinctively want to share with the world, but soon come to understand that bared souls are something to toy with. Williams stated in an interview that he viewed Stanley and Blanche representing human impulses in all of us.

Virgos also are astrologically driven to stay pure, so they don’t handle guilt well. They must eventually confess their sins. The avoidance of this takes them down paths that they wouldn’t have lovingly chosen. And we have the added cosmic distinction of not have a sighted planet.

Blanche’s sister Stella tells Stanley, her husband, that a brutal world changed Blanche that ‘no one was more loving…..’ Blanche is so sensitive and tender she falls in love with a gay man in pursuit of a empathetic companion.

Her shock at the discovery that he wasn’t just a poet but a sexually active homosexual causes her to lash out, so her lover kills himself. Blanche cannot handle the guilt of this and starts to escape in liquor, fantasies and sex.

She logically handles her romantic fantasies by embracing poetry, literature and music and tries to make her life as a high school English teacher. Her libido is more stoked by romanticism and after the death of her mother, her grief is acted out by avoidance. Her seductions and hunt for sex to forget tragedy throws her into a mid-life heat. Williams wrote this decades before it was culturally understood that many women hit their sexual peaks at Blanche’s age.

She usually ‘takes her victims to the Tranantula Arms’ she defiantly tells her hapless suitor Mitch. The opposite of sex is desire- this classic Williams line speaks to a psychological mystery of heightened libido during the grief period when a spouse dies.

After my husband Jack died I would watch that scene over and over again. My inner Blanche was totally unleashed. It is a psychodrama that unfolds often at the death of a spouse often arouses the libido. Unless, like Blanche, you are led offstage to an unstable future in a state facility for poor, traumatized relatives, one must work it out alone.

Advertisements