To Be Embers
I wanted the kind of love
Where I would be burnt alive
I found it
And now I’m wondering if
I should have fallen in love
I blame the books.
I blame the books I read, for giving me a warped idea of love.
I’ve read all kinds of books. Announcing love, denouncing love, debating love, negating love. The sum of results I could draw was that most people fall in love with the idea of love. Once you see through that illusion, you get to the core concept of absolute, undiluted, one hundred per cent untainted, selfless love. Which is an ideal beyond reach in day to day life, so it might as well not exist.
Except that it does exist. After setting that purity on a pedestal, everyone who even tried to come into my life fell short. I did not want someone I could not look up to, the way I would if they belonged on that pedestal. Not that I was chasing angels, but flaws are not what define a person. On the contrary, flaws recede into the background, only to provide more texture in that fabric. And all the books I read deepened that in me. I did not want the easy going love of summertime and spring fields, of daisies and butterflies.
I wanted the fury of the storm. The last breath of air you surrender from your lungs when drowning in someone else. The ozone singed smell of the sky when lightning rips it apart. Beauty and complexity and infuriating, infuriating madness. I wanted love that transmuted each touch into a metaphysical journey, the kind where a passing glance could wrap brimstone fingers inside your rib cage and pull your heart and lungs down in one savage slash. I waited for love like that, while all other approaches simply bounced off me for years.
I wanted love that I could forsake Heaven for. And I found it.
And books would read themselves out inside my head when he touched me. It was symphonies and sonatas and crescendos and all the music of the world, playing itself out when we sat in silence. The world moved in funny ways, and I forgot how to walk like a normal person. I was the daylight astronomer, counting the constellations in the sun. I wrote books and books of words for him, and he is worth thousands of books more. I said them out so loud in my head that my throat became dry, my voice hoarse and not more than a croak. I disintegrated and dispersed among the black holes of his eyes, and I let myself be utterly bare, and completely accepted there.
I found the love I wanted to be consumed by…. but it did not consume me.
It left me wanting for more.
And it decays as swiftly as crushed leaves left out in the rain, as books who have lain languishing, exposed to the elements. You’re left just standing there, fighting for a love long abandoned, trying to burn yourself when his fire has gone out…
Oh I blame the books I read, for showing me what love truly is.
Because they tell you what it is, but they don’t tell you how it doesn’t last forever.
c. CM, 02.09.2014
To Be Embers- To be, for the Daily Post.