On my lowest of days when darkness surrounds my heart and fills it with rage I wonder what I ever saw in you. When my anger results in tears, my frustration born out of arrogance and pride, I also realize how much I owe you though – a new beginning, a lesson, a spark coz for the first time in my life I truly fell in love. And that’s the gift I’ll always remember you for, although I really need to let you go and outgrow those feelings that once made me whole. You don’t want them, that is more than clear, so I have to be strong and let go of my fear of being unlovable, prickly or wrong. Bottom line: I need to move on.
And just as I understood that I have never known who you really are
that loving you has made no sense
that I fell for an image of who I wanted you to be
an idea rather than a person
a simple sentence made me crumble
reminding me that my heart has had its say in this and not my mind
and that it misses you
Don’t hide behind a hashtag. Be the change you want to see. Support your fellow women. Believe them when they tell you a man you know has molested them. Don’t belittle them in response. Don’t tell them that’s just how it is. Don’t be a silent victim, speak up if you have been harassed. Teach your children to have self-respect and voices of their own. Raise your sons to be feminists and your daughters to be respectful to them in return. Don’t expect women to be better than men. We are not. We are just as flawed. Don’t call yourself goddess or a queen. We are all humans. Just imagine if men called themselves gods and kings. Don’t call other women bitches just because they disagree with you. Don’t sell yourself short for a relationship. Don’t objectify other women or reduce them to their looks. As an artist, create the content that you miss. Write female leads without abuse. Don’t tell their stories in relation to a man but let them be strong for themselves. Don’t support violence. Don’t promote, condone or further it on stage or screen. Don’t be a part of what in real life you oppose. Take responsibility for your actions. Simply practice what you preach.
20°, the sun unusually strong for a day in mid October. A woman leans against a tree, her feet bare on the grass still luscious green. Her bike right next to her, her head buried in a book – she makes me pause. A group of seniors playing cards on a stump. Fallen trees all around them like wooden corpses as the last remnants of a storm so heavy it knocked out an entire city for a day. Unusual for us. I look at them, the splinters, bark and branches. They make me sad. All those golden crowns depleted on the ground, the random specks of red like drops of blood. My park was wounded badly, I can see that now. And every tree that lost its grip with roots too weak to withstand a tempest on muddy ground slows my steps and makes my heart cry out. How vile that force of nature, a tantrum really, sudden, crass. Such a reflection of my year or less self-centered: the world at large. That’s why the woman sitting by the tree caught my attention. Engulfed still by her story, she oozes calm.
Missing you has lifted my spirits in a strange way today. I don’t know how, nor why but feeling my gut knotting up over longing for your voice, the sight of you, your touch, has helped me breathe through turmoil and frustration. My aching heart too preoccupied to care about things that do not matter, about developments that normally would blow my mind. But you keep me calm, my love, in the eye of any storm. Not having you a whirlwind of emotions that outdoes any other I have faced before. No pain left, just sweetened sorrow and the gratitude for knowing love, not just desire. Love, not plain but simple. Each thought of you a happy one, putting the puzzle of my self together, improving me. No fear left, no doubts there, none.
Why is it that I cannot let you go? That no matter how often I tell my heart I must, it starts beating wild, tearing at my strength? Why do you haunt me in my dreams although I’ve worked so hard to trick my mind into believing I am fine – my love for you unrequited, unknown to you to some degree, at least in quality. Why does my soul have to remind me how deep my desire runs for you, not for your flesh but for your mind? That it is my wish to make you smile and be your rock in dire times. Why does it hurt so bad that your shields are up with me but lowered for the world it often seems? That you look happier these days without me by your side although I still see that spark of sadness in your eyes.Why do I forgive you every scar you keep inflicting on my heart? Every word you fail to say? Every gesture of sincerity you do not see. Why can I admit that your ignoring me is forcing me onto my knees and yet I cannot free myself from you? I could get up and stare your rejection right in the face but not just walk away. Why is that? Why is loving you so easy and yet so full of strain?
Across from me on the train sat a large man of Greek descent or so at least my guess, his middle-age bordering the old, his eyes warm and friendly. His arm full of roses, their colour pink and so intense they rivaled the beauty of a sunrise half-hidden in a cloud-cluttered sky. Next to him a woman, her skin mocha smooth, her red-rimed glasses giving her an air of quirky elegance. And as we exchanged a smile over flowers displayed to us in such magnificence, her eyes lit up infecting mine. It was a smile I carried with me on my way to work as I poked along, past worker bees and office ants and parents in a rush tugging at their children’s nerves, always ready to be the first ones at their daily crosswalk, bakery or coffee shop. I shrugged them off, their rage mild today, unfeasible somehow with the sun still lurking behind some sleepy clouds. So when I reached my morning hangout, my mood was balanced, frolic even – minus the fatigue I cannot shake without my first hot chocolate of the day. So I placed my order and my favorite waiter met my smile, then brightened it by knowing exactly what I wanted. “Almond milk, an espresso and a croissant,” he beamed, “Early morning order. Busy day.” I nodded. “And with a start like today, I don’t mind one bit.”
Hope is a glass half full wishing for a refill while being trapped in an entity that’s easily broken, its shattered remnants piercing your heart with fragments of dreams long crushed, scarring your soul if you don’t find the essence of your one true love.
Two days of summer this year. August 30 and finally a clear blue, no clouds anywhere to be seen except those plane-painted lines up high in the azure. To say this year so far has left me unscarred, my soul untainted, my heart intact would be a lie, but through my tears I’m finally able to embrace my blessings. No need to count them really because for every blow I took, a gift was there to help me breathe, so they were plenty. I just had to see them through the mist of heartache, rage and longing. My favorite season blown away by wind, the heat I need to make it through a long gray winter washed away by storms and heavy rains – the weather matching my mood so painfully, my life, my situation. Or was my mood inflicted on me by a sun just smiling in absentia, depriving me of energy and warmth? On the days that counted she was always there, however, shining through a cloud-cluttered sky. And although my skin’s still pale, my heart still bleeding from every dream that burst this year making my smile look crushed, these two days of summer have lifted my spirits and patched me up. With autumn fast approaching, I hope this vigor, verve and and vim will last.
I hear a seagull laughing in the sky as it passes by my window and instinctively I turn around to share my amazement with you, but you’re not there of course. I often feel your presence like this, see things I’d love to show you, details I know you would appreciate. But then I remember, you are not part of my life the way I wish you were and yet you’re always there. It’s that kind of madness that drives me out of my mind, an ambiguity laced with longing, palsy and desire. I close my eyes just for a moment, my heart taking me back to us first sharing an honest smile, a joke, a laugh. It sent a jolt through my body then, made me quake. I was so unprepared for how you made me feel, so at ease and yet so tense, reminding me of everything I wanted and everything I missed. It was then that I realized what an emotional wreck I had been and without knowing it, you told me why and showed me a way to be true to myself again.