Tag Archives: Melancholy

Love letter # 559

This evening, amidst the detectable softening of winter and the sweet aromatic emergence of spring, I felt you on my skin. Or was it your absence that quickened my senses? The vacated space you formerly inhabited, the quiet that once resonated with your proximity. Was the scented air in my nostrils the remnant mist of your tenderness? Did I swoon in such vapours?

One day, I swear, the weight of all this nebulous beauty will surely crush the last breath out of me – so that I can go missing with you. Be similarly hushed. Allow the light to shine right through. For now your love is the long sigh of distance, strung like the horizon at the edges of my awareness. As though, from elsewhere, your absence maps the borders of my presence.

Tonight, my love, I am touched by the hand withdrawn. Kissed by the mouth obscured. Wrapped in the arms of atmosphere. And in the hollow of your departure, a silence – the overwhelming beauty of which I can barely behold without sub-bass tremors shivering through the oceans of my blood, making holy floods out of memory and desire. Melting even melancholy into euphoria. Because you’re not here. Because the softly brushing evening, with its deep, invisible promise, is the flower of your leaving.

Sounds crazy, doesn’t it? Except it’s magnificent.

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Love letter # 532

I walked into a fire to be with you – and now I live in the river of indescribable beauty. I tore off the hinges to let you in, so that you might lay ruin to my kingdom. At your golden behest, I reached up to the canopy of heaven, only for it to rain until there was nothing else left. Yet I did not take shelter. Made no effort to swim. Would not pluck the knife from my heart. For the rush of my blood was the swoon of your name. And all the broken pieces…they had fallen from your hands. Yet had I done what everyone told me – what they would do – all I would have is a busted resolve, dried up and mild. Dead inside. Instead of this. Which is a form of euphoria. For which there is no way to thank you, other than to let it flow. And to be swept into the sea.

Love letter # 326

And in a blink, with a quiet inevitability, we find ourselves at the end of summer – these the last balmy nights, the last songs of the season. Soon, we will turn our heads away for a moment and, when we look back, will see that it has gone. Leaves at our feet. Beginning shivers.

I swim into the shimmer of your gaze, the long golden hour of love in its vaulting prime, and, in a blink, suspended autumn, with a barely noticeable creak of the levers, inches into motion. How then shall we walk in this shortening light? What dance might we do in the absence of songs?

Love letter # 328

It happened a couple of days ago. It wasn’t a surprise but it did burst a bubble. Intellectually knowing it is one thing, seeing it so clearly demonstrated is another. Hope and fantasy thrive on denial, on pretending, on maybe maybe – but they cannot be sustained when reality is so unwittingly played out before you.

There is no blame. There will be no name calling. No retro-fitted accusations. The simple fact is that the flame I have been quietly kindling burns in you for another. I saw it your eyes and smile when he arrived. In the way you looked up at him. And in that moment I understood without any possible recourse to fantasy that you did not and will not reserve such eyes for me.

So if I seem a little strange, withdrawn, not so forthcoming – you now know why.

Love letter # 717

And so it has come to this. The bridge that will not be crossed. The line that separates the wishing from the will not be. Yet although I have been here so many times before, I too am rent as though by newly inflicted wounds. For I know so well your side of the line. I know it like the memory of knives. Like blood pouring out so hard and dreadful you want to let it run to the very end. Till everything is washed away. That I should now be the carver of such cuts will surely set those ancient floods in motion once more.

Of course I did not mean this. Of course I hoped we might not arrive at this awful precipice. I felt so good in your presence, so seen by you, that I wanted it continue. Perhaps this was foolish. Selfish. It did not seem so at the time – but I concede that it may have proven so.

Yet for all that, here we are. With the brute animal fact before us. That for all of our absurd posturing, our dressing it up, our pretending we are somehow something other than what we are, desire is not a polite and constructed destination but an ocean far deeper than any philosophy we might dream of or insight we might proclaim. The river is made of blood. The castle built from bone. And dreams are made of skin. So easily torn.

I too have looked at another and wondered. How? What? Why the fuck not? Like you, I have scratched at the hard surface of love and rejection and found no satisfactory answers. Because there are no answers. No logical or ethical reasons. No conscious criteria.

So I will not insult you with a bogus explanation or political apology. You feel the way you feel and I feel the way I feel. Sure, we might try to conjure up nice, middle class theories about this but in the end they are all a denial. A way to paper over what all we fear. That sex, that desire, even love itself spring from wells we cannot control with neatly packaged ideas or the vanity of our so-called enlightenment. That in their narcotic thrall each of us shall surely fall.

I am in pain today but I know that yours is hotter. Darker. Perhaps full of fury. I have stood many times at that gate, waiting and hoping, trying one more time, turning over one more stone. Because of this I know that there can be no consolation prize. No quietly suffering nearness. If I were you I would be doing exactly the same right now.

Au revoir, my friend. I know there is nothing I can say, so I will say nothing more.

The space you once coloured with wonder.

The mundane so often reveals itself to be a quiet form of the profound. Like yesterday. Sitting watching a simple scene – a disjointed gathering of strangers at a café. It was as if I could see it all being played out unwittingly before me.

In one corner, a group of girls – young women in their early twenties – so full of easy confidence, so loud with the certainties of youth, so utterly assured of their attractiveness.

Two tables away, an Asian couple in their thirties with their adorable cherub in her stroller. The way the man doted on his girls. How the mother glowed when she stroked the child’s beautiful black locks.

Next to them – another couple. Older. Silent. Both prodding away at their phones, barely giving a flicker of notice to the waitress delivering their lattes. A tiredness it seemed – a routine resignation to a less than perfect but still comfortable arrangement. The fear of not having it.

And then – landing on the table next to me – the silver grey man who made the whole scene burn. A taut, unrelaxed frame. Drab utilitarian clothes; doubtless the same non-style he’s known for decades. But his face. His gaze. At the distance of despair. In the certainty of loneliness. Knowing that the table of young girls had not even registered his existence – and would not. Ever.

Of course, you know that this is why I’m writing. He was the mirror. A window abruptly opened on an emptiness I try not to ponder too often. The space you once coloured with wonder.

Love letter # 562

I won’t lie. It’s like a knife. This silence. Distance. The way that abundant promise has winked into nothing in just a few months. From everything to this.

I still don’t know why it went the way it did. What it was in you that said no. I guess it doesn’t matter. Explanations are a pale recompense.

Maybe there is something you value more than love. Or fear less. (Whatever.)

Then again – maybe it’s something in me. Or something missing that you couldn’t do without. Either way, I’m here now – and you’re not. And I think of you, even though I know full well you never think of me.

I used to be a romantic. I once hoped for the miracle of returning. Not anymore. Now I sit and breathe.

Au revoir, mon amour.