Storms in sunset

Leaving felt like sending my heart a drunken text: a fuck-it-all that was uncomfortable in the wake, as naked as raindrops trickling along skin when he dropped me and my broken umbrella by the doorstep.

Footprints on the mat, and words so soft they dribbled into socks, and slipped through my soles like echoes.

I heard them resonate: while ripples widen, circling their predecessors, his letters shrank and when I tried to catch each escaped breath, I could only hear my own ears beating red and black: the aftermath of storms in sunset, a beautiful kind of ache.

5am.

I miss the 5am’s
when thoughts were hopes
when thoughts were whizzing through the air
undisturbed,
when thoughts translated into perfect words
and the typewriter would set afree a silence
I thought I’d lost within my palm.

Today I wake at 5am
and see a different thing to blurry memories:
I see how the clouds collide
and mist befalls the breaths of early morning;
how dewdrops hang from balcony tops
never knowing how to fall;
how your laptop hums a tune
that’s static, warm, a subtle rise and fall;
how the smile by your lips
stays
even though you’re not awake;
how nothing moves
yet everything is alive.

Musings of a night

They say that you are the night, cold and born to die of light, but you’re smiling and there’s a swallow in your cheek and a shadow on your chin, and I realise that they don’t understand. They will never understand how you don’t have to be the warmth to warm me, how you don’t have to be the sun to show me an entire world, how you the starless sky are more beautiful than the taste of fireworks.

The way you stay.

Why am I still hung up on the past? Most days I force myself into the present, but sometimes, I find myself slipping away, away into the distance, retracing footsteps, looking back at memories of you with a hunger that aches, a longing unfulfilled, a possibility unrealised. The simplest of things are triggers – listening the song I told you was my favourite, drinking the tea you introduced me to, walking in a breeze that carries with it the sound of tired engines and flickering traffic lights just as we had done once. You are just a ghost now, that’s what people tell me, but that’s the problem, don’t you see? You may not be here anymore, but your presence still haunts me, still catches me when I least expect it to. People come and go, but ghosts stay by your side, following you the way unwanted shadows do.

Don’t you get it? Even when you’re gone, you’re not. I want to move on, but I’m only moving forward still clasping onto these memories of you as though they are my last heartbeats. It’s embarrassing to admit all this… I mean, how could so short a time with you leave such a deep impression?

I read a story once. The girl in that story realised that moving on is not forgetting, it’s being able to remember without feeling any pain. The thing is, I don’t feel pain but I feel something. A tight smile, foggy eyes. Something slight, rarely noticed but always felt. Maybe all this is because I’m “sensitive”, maybe my emotions are fragile like wet clay and any kind of weight imprints an everlasting mark upon them. But maybe it’s because you actually meant a lot, and I never had the courage to tell you that. Somehow I let you go without ever letting you go.

Then and Now.

(I am just a shadow of who I used to be.)

I try to remember a time when the world was still innocent. When I was still innocent. The earth tremored in delight, not in fear… did it not? And blue… blue was the colour of fine skies, not of sadness. The flicker of every heartbeat signalled to life, not to this creaking pain. I was once unhinged, free to roam and dream and smile at the thought of having those dreams because fantasies defined my realities. But now, fantasies have become just that – fantasies and nothing more; a testament to what could have been but will never be. I am just a rusted piece of metal, too frail to swing open, drowning in my own papery breathes. The doors that once beckoned at me with the vitality of a billion lights have now closed upon me. I am alone. And it is dark. And it is cold.

Innocence is not ignorance. If life’s greatest purpose is to be happy and I was happiest in my innocence, then surely I was at my wisest point in those childhood years? The older I grew it seems, the more unsatisfied I became – it was as though age impaled upon me the inability to see the good through the bad; so much did I acknowledge the bad that I forgot to consider anything beyond that.

But maybe… maybe I think… there’s no point comparing who you were to who you are? Maybe to lose your innocence is to gain a deeper understanding of suffering? And maybe understanding suffering equates to understanding happiness… because how could one ever know how it feels to be happy if one did not know pain and sadness first?

I think maybe I shouldn’t try to remember, because to remember is to accentuate the differences between the past and present – differences that cast a dark cloud of longing and unfufilled dreams over your head ’til you’re reaching for a version of your childhood that never even existed. The doors are closed now, but maybe I still have a little energy left in me to open them up again. Maybe this is a choice. Nothing’s easy and simple anymore, but that doesn’t mean nothing’s achievable. And I have a choice now: either to stay in the dark or take a step forward towards the light.

(You know what I’ve always liked about shadows? They are indications that even in darkness, light exists close by. And you are the reflection of that light.)

Darkness abound

People say that darkness is cold and static, terrifying yet strangely comforting. It has this power to hide the things we don’t want to see, to numb the fears we don’t want to confront, to shrink the parts of ourselves we don’t want to embrace.

But I think darkness is beautiful, because without it, we would never know light. Sometimes darkness may make you cower, but other times it empowers you to have the guts to be yourself.  Darkness is that moment when you are truly left with your own thoughts, lost in your own world, and there’s a silence that lingers in the air. A moving kind of silence that’s you driving on an empty road, window down, a gentle breeze passing into your ears.

It’s dark. And it’s warm.

a music to a heartbeat

The beauty of music, I always thought, was the way you could immerse yourself into it simply by putting on your headphones and the way it deciphered for you those feelings you otherwise had so much trouble deciphering. It was the way it gave you the tears you needed, the heartbeat you yearned for, the flash of life you searched for.

Sometimes when I play the piano, I find myself wondering: how could something black-and-white simultaneously be so rich with memories and emotion? How could something that is in essence just a series of sound patterns, become so meaningful to the ear? Maybe it all rests upon our interpretations of these sounds, our innate abilities to find points of resonance within the music and to connect.

Music was never about isolating yourself from the world, it was always becoming more in tune with it. You turn on the music, block out the white noise and listen to the world as though you are listening to it for the very first time.

Small is big and ordinary is extraordinary

This is a piece I wrote some time ago about New Year Resolutions. Just thought that I’d share it with you peeps. Hope you enjoy 🙂

*** *** ***

I’ve always been cynical of New Year Resolutions. I mean, what gives New Year’s Day the right to be so special and so magical and so spectacular anyway? Sure, it’s at the start of the year, but what about the start of the day or the start of the week or the start of the month? Why don’t we ever make a big deal out of Breakfast Resolutions or Monday Resolutions or Monthly Resolutions?

We’re always so busy trying to rush through everything in pursuit of the ‘bigger picture’ that we fail to notice the beauty and significance of smaller things along the way.  We forget about the box of matches that set off all those fireworks. We forget about the mountain of crumpled pages and drafts that had to be climbed before the novel could become as brilliant and effortless as it is today. We forget about the tiny names rolling in the credits that helped to seam up the film’s plot holes and costume holes and any other holes or rips or loose threads it encountered along the way.  We forget that New Year Resolutions would be nothing without the resolutions we unwittingly make and achieve every single day, every single week and every single month of the year.

Grand finales are only possible because of the little steps we take. That’s why Breakfast Resolutions, Monday Resolutions and Monthly Resolutions are just as special, just as magical and just as spectacular as New Year Resolutions. That’s why small is big and ordinary is extraordinary.

Eyes wide closed

 

is it in our human nature to constantly seek other people’s approval? to look for our own worth in someone else’s words? to find our perfection through the eyes of another?

i’m asking myself these very questions as i think of those people.

those people who question your dry humour and quirky laughter and clumsy dance moves, who make you question your own happiness. cynical people with narrow-minded views of the world, who inflict a lingering pain with their words – a pain that clenches onto your heart and will not let go.

your mind’s always telling you that you shouldn’t listen to what they say, but you can’t help it. you really can’t. when you’re so young and innocent and unafraid of your own vulnerability, you can’t help but open your ears as widely as you open your heart. you let them steal the colours that define your skies, till everything’s grey and tasteless, a stone.

till you’ve hit the bottom of the sea, without a ripple, without a sound.

and when you look up, all you see is a blurry world staring back at you.

but then i’m remembering those other people. the ones who taught you how to swim back up. the ones who made you realise that,

even when everything’s smeared together in chaos and mess, everything still makes sense.

and they tell you:

just because nothing’s as clear as it used to be, doesn’t mean you have to start all over again, as a nobody carrying a blank slate.

because you’re a somebody.

you’re older now, maybe a little more closed-off, a little more fearful of showing too much pain and vulnerability. but that doesn’t mean you’re a worse person than you once were. your skies may no longer be filled with the same colours as before, but that’s not because those cynical people have drained them all away; it’s because you’re creating new colours and adding them to the mix.

this is you. this person with dry humour and a quirky laugh and clumsy dance moves. this person who sometimes needs to seek other people’s approval because you don’t think you deserve your own. this person who doubts, who dreams big, who’s sad at times but happy other times.

you’re searching for something you already have. and you’re always returning empty-handed, wondering where your worth is, where your happiness is, where your life is.

stop searching, because what’s the point of finding something you haven’t even lost? be this person that you are, and i tell you now:

that’s perfection enough.