The heart is a funny thing. You can twist it, break it, give it away. You can make it light or it can sink. It can race or slow down so much that you can literally feel the seconds drip by and still…
It’s its capacity for pain which captivates. Because the pains of the heart are myriad.
But they all boil down to loss. Loss of self, loss of control, loss of hope, loss of love, loss of permanence.
I would like to say that it’s only pain, but it is medically possible to die from the emotional pain of a broken heart. That’s how connected we are. That the loss of love can break us. Kill us. And when it hurts that badly, you hope for that. Desire it. Because then it stops. And that’s all you can see.
I know that feeling. I know it bone deep. I fear it but it’s a road I’ve mapped, so it is intimate and familiar.
I’ve been rereading my older work and it paints in vivid hearts blood. A man trapped by pain.
I hope to not go back there. But some things are beyond control. And I, unfortunately, am emotionally mature enough to know that. Having your eyes wide open, remembering it all….
Each peel of laughter
A sounding of the gulf
between what was and is
That yawning pit beneath my feat
Blood slow seeping
What was will never be
The past stretches behind
A shackle to what was
Letting go of what was lost
The allure of what we were
Locked behind doors
Waiting patiently to be free
Into dreams of paths not taken
Choices that can’t be unmade
And the thin slivers of light
That make it past the fog
Self imposed barriers
Last bastions of sanity
Last soldiers holding the line
Scraping out the lining of bags long closed
Opening doors nailed shut
Remember the pieces that didn’t fit the narrative of self
Remember the fights
Remember being young
Remember being stupid
Remember walking in front of speeding vehicles with a glib phrase and the secret desire to die
Remembering the unkind words and the immediate regret and the silence that followed
two people hurting and hurting each other to feel human for a few minutes before they went back to drowning separately
Remembering trying to be the hero for unheroic reasons
To rescue for the reward instead of to defend this battered soul of youth
Remembering days of loneliness and ache masked behind moments of epiphany
The long slow climb out of oblivion
Out of the things done and not done
out of the pits of what have I done
And the tainted desire for a little more
And the bitter poison fruit of vengeance
In whose seeds bore the sweetness of peace
Trying to save everyone because I could not save her
Waking paranoia because a moments inattention caused a lifetime of pain
There are lifetimes within lifetimes and deaths within deaths. Sometimes change is not enough and what was must be allowed to fade
If I could save her, of course I would, of course. It’s easy to say, discounting all the years past that point. Discounting all the changes I made to be a better person.
Of course, I’d go, I’d be there and that would make the difference.
If I could save her I would.
If I could make a different choice
And accept that it means that the man I am now would be annihilated.
All of those experiences that turned me, minute by minute would be destroyed as well.
Of course, I’d save her. Of course.
Knowing how it happened, knowing it all.
Of course, I’d save her. Of course.
And accept that saving her, means dying in her stead. I’d still be breathing but the man I am now would never be. The love I’ve experienced, the people I’ve met, the family I’ve connected with, the goddess of my heart. It all gets snuffed out, turned on the wheel of a choice.