You look at me and I look at you the way broken things look at the hands of an angry god, the way complete beings look down at things that can never be their equal.
You and me, we take turns, learning to feel pain, to give pain reaching for the light in each other’s eyes, making copies of each others memories and spilling the ink on the originals.
You and me – we are children left alone unsupervised with this steel instrument of love. We now know of the blood and bone within our skin, thanks to this blade. We now know how to keep distance when nothing keeps up apart.
When we lose our color, our teeth of milk and cruelty, when the blade loses its shine and looks like any other rust of this world, only then we know the pain of having walked past a life we could have had, the journeys we could have walked, the meaning we carried in our selves for each other sake, the meaning we never looked up, never cared for.
He stepped down from his ‘cloud nine of the day’ as I stepped out from my house made of last drops of rain and at the intersection of fleeting memories we fell in love. That is what I tell my friends when they ask me about the moment I was tempted to end the sadness of my life.
I tell them about the words I borrowed from his lips, his borrowed tongue that helped me eat a bit more. How I taped his adjectives on my mirror so that I wouldn’t have to look at myself.
They sit with me on the table I can’t bear to share with my love. They stare at me, as I ask them what to wear, how to hide my poison, how to hide the crack at the elbow, the bruised collarbone, the split lip, the ache in my heels, my frayed wings, my broken voice and all other reminders of what love has done to me, and what more love can do, if i just let it in again.
They tell me it is all healed. They tell me it is all past. They hold their skin against mine to make me see that the cracks are all in my mind, how everyone looks just like me, how everything wrong with me is now the norm. And they laughed when I looked at them with concern.
They dropped me at the restaurant and vanished at the farthest bend of the road. As I dragged my feet towards another story that I will never get to complete, another tragedy that suited only me, I looked back and tried to think of all the things that these kind friends of mine suffered as they hoped and wished and lied to themselves. The exceptions they now considered normal, the wounds they cannot even see, the pain they cannot call pain, the love they cannot bear to leave- I tasted these facts in every spoon of artificial sweetness I fed to my mouth that evening.
I tried many times to write about you, to tell the world why I loved you once even when it makes no sense now.
Now, when the days in the sun seem like a dream, seem like a ruse, seem like a bait to everything that just gets worse. Now, when all that we once were glad to believe in and that we were has caused us to write this end.
This end where I have my own sky but end up looking at the fields below the harvest, the drought, the spring, the festivals that you live. This end, where your day always ends with looking for that bird who foolishly broke her wings for you, among the birds who only dream of flying.
I held onto my heart that wouldn’t stop running towards the possibility of love, towards you who smiled at me and yet never looked back. I held onto my heart, clawed at it, in fact. All because this role of wanting is an ocean of false memories and false hopes. This feeling of losing myself to something like love, someone like you, to everything out of my reach was wearing me down to a version of me I didn’t like. Wanting you has made me cautious, has made me aware of why I can’t be the one for you, why I can never be the one being loved. Wanting you makes me feel like I can never be happy again.
At a bus stand in front of mall (that I have never been to) I learnt how to wait and how to live with disappointments without making a big deal of it.
In the bracket of an hour, I grew smaller than I ever thought I could be. “this is what love does to you, this is what love does to all of us”, all the voices in me lied. I was again weary of the love that I had chosen and the person I had trusted (“again” – the word that showed me the real reason why it would never work out).
I stood beside strangers on the crowded bus stand, awkwardly crying. I counted these not-so-scary strangers who were trying to become one skin. I pretended that I hated to be rained on as much as they did. I pretended that I didn’t mind their warmth, that my suspicious mind was not at work again.
Hours went by, empty roads faithfully stayed empty. I became more aware of the boundaries of my body I became aware of the person who would never come looking for me, who would look at the three hour long rain and still won’t wonder what happened to me.
We all stood there, pretending to be the only human in the group of zombies who had taken over a bus stand out of boredom, who stared at the wide road, the darkness beyond, and the emptiness behind as if their eyes were made to witness only this moment. I closed my eyes and hummed something, anything that could drown the presence of everyone who knew the sound of my breaking heart now.
At a bus stand, that could protect no one, we all dreamt of the worst- of the submerged road, a rain that will never stop, the cold that would take us down for days, children forever waiting, of the lightning we could hear but not see
of a love painlessly ending and a heart that shamelessly survived.
The brightest star of my childhood dreams sits on the set of a sitcom and tells jokes about me. He wins few hearts and breaks few guitars- becomes an artist of some kind. He fills the screens with the love he only spoke about. I become a bit more irrational in his stories sometimes so much, that I feel no wonder when he forgets who I really am. It feels natural when I don’t look at him when I talk of love, or when I don’t talk about myself. I trace the distance between the dreams that he had and the person he has become and find myself stuck between choosing and abandoning the same person with different heart. How helplessly we have drifted to a life where our best doesn’t do much, where my undying love only causes me pain, where your eyes filled with dream only makes you blind, where the death of our love and the tear from my eyes are the only thing that gets you closer to what you want.
i remember your hands and their warmth like i remember the versions of me that were easier to live with (or so i think). the colors, their unnatural brightness, the scent of acetone always lingering on the tips of your fingertips, always hiding a sad rainbow (just my type). always a star that you forgot to rub and break, shined on your skin. under my lips, they shined brighter than my world. i swam to them as they stood in a world of darkness in the shapes of you and me. it is so odd that in my constantly breaking and building and growing brain and its images and meaning- everything about you meant love. i loved your flower hairpins and fake bullets and the magazines of the the people you would rather be and the window you glanced out of when didn’t want to look at me and your back against mine. it is odd that i could love you so even when i didn’t know why?
His face lit up with the death of every colorful explosion in the sky. He hates this sky on other days (among other things). Today he loves it, this darkness, this crowd, even me. (Maybe not me, but it doesn’t mean anything to me now. But in moments like this I am reminded of the “me” who would have wanted his love or at least be part of the world that can be loved. The ‘past me’ shakes off my hand and stands there looking at him as if he is her sky, but only finds the signs of deaths that have nothing spectacular about them. I stand there looking at my sadness, his sadness breathing the air and living some sort of life for once.) He stands there looking at the sky through my silence, through my awe, awe at his simple happiness. (How long has it been since he has loved anything with his breaking heart.) He stands there looking at the sky even when curtain of stars resurface, even when the screams of children dissolve. He stands there abandoned by the world and yet happy. (I stand there abandoned by him, by myself and yet happy)
As I climb, my steps remembered the shoes I once had the ones that didn’t hurt so much and how hands of mine that hacked through them just to become my own person, some sort of grown-up. I climbed over the yellow soft dress and the light that it caught just to get this, this body that looks held together but is not (this body knows only how to fall apart), just to get few more shadows that ruin my beautiful wrist with their persistent passion. They claw through me, to see how I am made, how I look and speak once I break. A stranger once left me at the bottom of a black pond and called it love just so that I won’t cry and in return I called him my love just for few breaths, just for my life. I climbed over the right to mean the word “love” thereafter and the dream of knowing a heart other than mine. I breathe as if I have sinned yet I walk like I am happiness and determination in flesh. I cling to all the bitter bits of this world as if they would ultimately save me. I climb over, get over, and forget so easily, so bitterly that each feeling of mine is just a shade of resentment.
“you make me forget the unpleasantness of my life. so i will call this love. calling you my love is the only way that i can depend on you without feeling weak.”
“i dreamt of you sitting and singing on the blue couch of my childhood home. home that my parent’s respective loves burnt long ago. you remind me of hope now.”
“i hold your name more dearly than your hand, because your hands are so human that i can’t seem to love them the way i love you. i stop myself from telling you how my own humanness makes me hate myself. have you heard of the heart that changes it’s mind too often that abandons as easily as it takes up new obsession, that makes us miserable even when we should be happy, even when we have all we want. i have that. you have that. that’s what i hate. that’s what i fear. i stop myself from telling you how often i wonder that even this love for you might be a grand way of looking at the easy way out.”