Tuesday, May 02, 2006

Still Waters

I am blaming this piece on a lack of original ideas and for Nocturne’s excellent work. Before you read my post, make sure you read Shifting Sands. I wondered what someone at the other end of the letter would write. This is a response to Shifting Sands, titled Still Waters. I tried to match the quality of the writing, but as you know, still waters stagnate.

Words. They narrowed the gap between us, swayed us when the ground beneath us threatened to be firm. It isn’t an irony, but destiny’s leaning that forces us to resort to words once again, now that the ground beneath threatens to swallow us. As I sit sipping coffee in the mug you gifted me so dearly and read your letter, I can only reflect on the nature of life. We spend half our lives trying to find the things that matter so much to us, and once we get that, we spend the other half lamenting the imperfection of what we just acquired. What do I lament? What do I celebrate? The sand that slipped through the fingers? The dew that moistened my face?

Do you remember us, sitting on the beach on a Saturday evening? Two fragments of the universe joined together at a junction of rock and sea, sky and earth. I reached for your face and wiped that drop of water that had settled on your face, breaching the distance between us. A tear, an expression of joy, of satisfaction, a moment dipped in perfection. You glanced at me and a faint smile appeared on the contours of your face. Just enough to break my heart, and render my words useless. Where do we go from a place like that?

Yes, I am dating again. New life, new tears, old struggle. Is it really new though? Visions of your body silhouetted in the dark and my hands feeling it with a familiarity as if it were mine, our lips meeting in a frantic haste before fate would tear us apart, my hot breath on the nape of your neck, a hug marked by the softness of your breasts pressed against my chest haunt me. And yet, having slept with someone else changes everything, doesn’t it? A feeling of dispossession, of having yielded, of having moved on.

When we have given each other joy that cannot be surpassed, we give each other pain. For the moments that you cringed on the floor on your knees, gutted by the few words I uttered to you, there were several that I spent staring at a blank wall. I lost sense of time, for a visceral agony had gripped my being. The knowledge that I was right did not help. I had to lose us in order to gain you. People asked us since to ‘move on’. We haven’t. We have just stepped aside. Stepped aside and watched our past with the curious eyes of someone who can’t understand why a child finds joy in splashing in a puddle. You and I are at the same place today. I just got tagged with the word ‘dating’. It means nothing. You are tagged with the word ‘single’. That means nothing either. Our present will always have a fond eye for the past, an ache that will refuse to go away. So, kiss me when you see me, but don’t search my eyes for a message, and I won’t look for love in yours. We are just two people with disillusioned souls. It will be good to see you, my friend.

8 comments:

RTD2 said...

Still waters don't stagnate. They run deep. This was really beautiful.

Nocturne said...

@Parth: for once, words are failing me completely. how did you do that? thank you. how did you know about the mug? it strikes to the very bone. there's no point asking how you...? but i am somewhat comforted by the fact that the subject of my post would probably never utter anything with such lyrical abandon. it is freaky because it feels like someone has read one of my poems backward to me. but thank you.

Parth said...

I have to be honest. I actually wasn't very happy with the effort, but the feedback from the two of you seems very contrary. The lyrical abandon was almost abandoned, but now I am glad that I went ahead with it. Thank you for the kind comments.

About the mug: I like coffee and am waiting for a good coffee mug to be gifted to me. Several requests have been sent out, from spouse unto other relatives. Perhaps its just a projection of my need that turned up in my writing :-)

Nocturne said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Nocturne said...

i've always maintained that one can never have too many coffee mugs in life. :)

RS said...

"Where do we go from a place like that?"

Beautiful.

Nocturne said...

@RS: where indeed? [well, i've got some ideas, but is anyone listening? :p]

Anonymous said...

Nocturne's blog and your response made my day today ... great stuff!