Monday, October 24, 2011

Conversations with the Self: Gratitude...


“Aren’t you supposed to write another horror story?”

I looked at him. I wonder what changed. I cannot pinpoint what it is but right at this moment, I knew that something was different. I heard his question but that was not the most important thing right now. Looking at him in the cold airless emptiness that is the abandoned subway station, I could not help but feel something slip away.

Yet I could not put my finger on it. The concept of it eludes my mind. I am only left with hints as to what it is.

For one thing, I could not help but feel the familiar heaviness of sadness – but it is not a sadness that is borne of grief, but rather a sadness borne of realization… It is a dull throbbing that is achy… which almost compels you to try and scratch at your soul.

I nodded.

But it is more than sadness… The word to describe it eludes me…

Like water that slips away from one’s hands…

It cannot be grasped – it is something that can only be felt…

“I see” he says. He seems to know it too. The way he tilted his head in resignation as he smiled faintly into the distance.

We both see the same things…

From different perspectives, perhaps in so many ways…

That is the tragedy that warps both our consciousness.

We wage a continuing struggle in the depths of my mind – the poet who yearns for the tragic existence of a life spent in self-imposed isolation and artistic sacrifice… and the writer that screams for the warmth of human companionship.

One craves pain and solitude to feel alive and the other desires to be rid of the loneliness that slowly devours my soul into a hollow emptiness.

Yet I too know that in the depths of his frozen heart that yearns for the tragedy of absolute solitude, he also seeks for that flame that will thaw out the ice that holds everything at a distance.

Who will win in the end? I wonder…

Would I spend the rest of my days drowning in self-imposed sadness  in the middle of a forest somewhere with only my mind for company consoled only by the sad refrain of the strains of a violin while drinking wine under the pale light of the moon.

Or would that future be changed into the warmth of a home embraced by the love of a woman who will rescue me from this prison that slowly engulfs me; with the laughter of children and grandchildren that will banish the echoes of emptiness that ring in the corridors of my soul.

“You are finding God again.” It was a statement.

I nodded. It’s not that we hated God before or refused to acknowledge divine presence. Was it resentment that I ran away from Him? Maybe…

Sometimes having the mind that grasp complicated things is a curse when it drowns the mind with frustration and bitterness… Existence is a farce… mortals are nothing more than pawns caught in between light and shadow… thoughts like these…

But I knew inevitably that I will find my way to Him again…

Part of chasing away the darkness that lingers in my heart is to find my way back to the light. I grew tired of life; or rather of life without meaning… Human despair, the madness of mortal hearts that crush and tear each other apart –

A mind without meaning  tires itself to the point where life becomes an empty existence.

That gave birth to the poet…

He who stands in front of me now; the one who stares at me in front of the mirror…

We are one and the same…

“She must be some woman.” He laughed.

I laughed with him.

“I don’t stand a chance though…” I said.

“Hmm” He grinned. “It’s the story of our life, it would seem”

We both laughed into the emptiness, the echoes resounding in the cavernous expanse of the abandoned station. It was a laughter born of realizing that even when one is saved, one finds despair. And yet…

…there is redemption there.

During the course of an entire lifetime, people touch each other’s souls.

In innocent gestures such as simple words, one soul can save another…

“It is indeed the story of our life…”

“Curve balls…”

“Curve balls indeed…” I smile.


We go through life looking for that hand that will save us. I think we are all the same, empty souls searching for meaning in a world that offers mostly illusions. This is why we dream and why we wake up every day.

We ask God why we exist… to find Him, yes… to provide an answer to the one who is taunting Him; but life is also about knowing how wonderful life is, to know what it means to laugh and smile, to know pain and sadness so that happiness can be appreciated…

Thank you…

It’s the least I can say…

Arigatto… Yorushiko onegaishimasu…

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