When “it” is Over

I remember to have written before in my old defunct blog something about love, loss, and longing, and the waiting, uncertainty, and anticipation entailed. It was about you.

***

I have already been used to not seeing you, not speaking to you, not even thinking about you. You were my “could have been”, though eventually I deemed you my soulmate. Sounds weird I know, but remember when we went around randomly and wasted time on things that were irrelevant to our lives yet seemed to have made sense? Those became remembrances that brought clarity as to how and why we can never be. Those were the moments that haunted me, but at the same time hauled me back to safety and sanity whenever I was in great irrepressible pain.

I even wrote to you and wrote about you. How can I not? When you were the one who taught me the meaning, value, and gravity of each word, more than the dictionary could ever offer. Of course, I added romanticism to that. That’s how we deal with things and people we used to love, right? Also, I could not help it then, knowing that’s the farthest we could ever/never be.

***

And as you always do in the past four to five years, you came to me as a surprise. But this time, with utmost realness (discounting the fact that it was virtual). It was not surreal though. Nothing magical, really. It was unexpected, I cannot put a feeling on it. This was what I wanted years ago. This is what I would have given up things for. But that was not an option then. All we did was pack our things up and leave.

It kind of makes me happy though of the time we have spent apart. Maybe we needed that to wonder and wander. Maybe that was one way of making us grow and realize some things. Maybe it brought us into thinking how we cared for each other in each’s absence.

This is my story of love lost. A narrative of longing, waiting, and anticipation that have gone. It will never be the same love as before. This is now the kind of love/friendship far more than your words can convey.

I am thankful I already have my life on track, and to have people I have lost back is a mere bonus. I guess friendships really do not end. You gobbled up your own words. In the end, it came from you even; that it has to be rekindled.

You were one of my greatest (and weirdest!) friends after all.

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Thus “He” Spoke (A Repost)

This post was lifted from my personal journal, then published here.

Still, I remember her. It’s been more than a year since we both sat in this bench facing the lake. Same warm sun, same cold wind, same paddled boats, same pedaled swans, same dome of yellow blooms above our heads. Same everything – except her.

Right there before we have entered the park, I could have said what I felt, what I was suffering from; but her imperfectly orchestrated ways got the best of me. She flew me right to the other end of the rainbow even before I opened my mouth.

She was silent until we sought refuge at this bench. She was in between a smile and a frown, in between laughter and tears. She spoke no words – as if I have never taught her to perfectly choose and use them, or maybe, because she felt like they were awkward – more awkward than her silence.

We just stared at the lake. It wasn’t actually a beautiful sight. Thus, we sought beauty in the eyes of lovers passing by, in the smile of kids riding their bikes (I still know looking at them makes her happy and envious at the same time).

We left with the usual parting words. I would have liked to hug her and tell her things the way I did that cold December night, or simply give her a high five so I can catch and hold her hand – that she’ll find security in me and that I’ll feel assurance in her.

Months after, she told me she wanted to talk to me. I asked her to meet me at the library. Eight in the morning. Just us two. She nodded. She smiled.

But when I woke up in the morning , a message from her said she cannot make it. She already left the night before for something more important but she promised she’ll save the words. I insisted that she tell me still. I asked, yes I did, and she let out the words. It wasn’t the most beautiful litany – it was more of a random set of words she confusingly put together to make sense, but its chaos was concrete enough to understand what she was trying to say.

I did not know. Maybe I found something inadequate, or maybe, I found myself uncertain. Things kept coming and going in and out of my mind. For once, I did not know which words to choose. Seemed to me, a “goodbye” was the only remaining thing that made sense. And that I said – without a hug, without a touch, without a bitter smile.

She spoke foreign words as her farewell. I never heard of her since. But sometimes I feel her – in sincere smiles, in soft drizzles, in loud laughs, in smiling eyes, in girlish giggles. Weird though, I remember her in winning playstation matches, in warm well of coffee, in nighttime study breaks, in comic films. and yes, I do think of her and her stars when i brush through Exupery’s The Little Prince.

I wonder if she has already turned me into literature – calling me different names, utilizing different metaphors like what she did to my yearbook testimonial.

I know she comes here every now and then. I’m just not sure whether she sits at the same spot and feels the same way again.

It was our last long walk and talk together. Now i wonder where’d she be. Who she’d be walking with, who she’d be sharing a bench with. But with her imperfectly orchestrated ways, which I actually find interestingly beautiful, she must be flying right now. She’s probably flying to places only a few people could find and explore – but not the way back to me, not even to back to this bench.

***

Dear Former friend,

I’d rather not call you that way, but how else will I? Anyway, something reminded me of you, although I’d rather not be reminded of you in that light. Same news reached me days ago, it coincided with your birthday. It didn’t concern you though, it just made walking down memory quite painful. But that’s just how it goes. You’re way better now anyway. Hope you always will. That, and a Happy Birthday.

Asteorra

Wading Through the Curtains

This is exactly how you say “Hi” to me years ago.

You were well aware of my shallow threshold for pain. You have seen me burst into tears due to some simple cramps and shed a whole lot more due to homesickness. You knew how to hush and calm me down. This you do with the littlest effort – your company.

I have colds, fever and astigmatism attacks recently. No, I don’t blame it on the train anymore, it’s just that the weather has not been good lately. The sun shines right after random rain showers, vice versa. The Psychology minor you might have comically judged the weather as bipolar. You find academically-related jokes like that way funny, but yeah, I wasn’t thinking about you anymore, not even the last time I was writing about Baguio.

I was surprised how you appeared in my dreams Saturday evening. I don’t even think the slightest swirl of alcohol in my head could have composed an apparition of you. But in such cold and surreal world of dreams, your smile was warm, like that cup of coffee you held with my hand one cold December night. You sat beside me and we talked like our old selves – only, we were not in our sanctuary anymore. Only, I have to wake up with my phone resounding an alarm.

I have thought of you, well, as cheesy as it may sound, my soulmate. Elizabeth Gilbert’s Eat, Pray Love serves as my Review of Related Literature:

“People think a soul mate is your perfect fit, and that’s what everyone wants. But a true soul mate is a mirror, the person who shows you everything that is holding you back, the person who brings you to your own attention so you can change your life.

A true soul mate is probably the most important person you’ll ever meet, because they tear down your walls and smack you awake. But to live with a soul mate forever? Nah. Too painful. Soul mates, they come into your life just to reveal another layer of yourself to you, and then leave.

A soul mates purpose is to shake you up, tear apart your ego a little bit, show you your obstacles and addictions, break your heart open so new light can get in, make you so desperate and out of control that you have to transform your life, then introduce you to your spiritual master…”

Guess Ms. Gilbert has already laid out the cards. I need no explanations from you anymore. (I never did ask all these years anyway) Your presence, absence, and whatever you call this sort of existence makes you and me profound.

That, and thank you for wading through the curtains of sleep just to kiss me in the forehead. Unknown or strange your means may be, they never fail to shy away the pain and make me feel you care, like you always do. I miss you.

Your Almost Lover is Dead*

*Allusion to Stars’ Your Ex-Lover is Dead

When there is nothing left to burn 
You have to set yourself on fire 

God that was strange to see you again
Introduced by a friend of a friend
Smiled and said ‘yes I think we’ve met before’
In that instant it started to pour,
Captured a taxi despite all the rain
We drove in silence across Pont Champlain
And all of the time you thought I was sad
I was trying to remember your name…

It was like a dream.

It was like a nightmare.

To awaken from a deep slumber of our souls and ghosts meeting again.

This scar is a fleck on my porcelain skin
Tried to reach deep but you couldn’t get in
Now you’re outside me
You see all the beauty
Repent all your sin

I have never traced stars on your skin.

Yours were my first constellations.

With every little touch, be it under the rain or midst the cold wind, they sparkle.

You did not have the chance to feel them.

You have not seen them even.

You were gone, long before they existed.

It’s nothing but time and a face that you lose
I chose to feel it and you couldn’t choose
I’ll write you a postcard
I’ll send you the news
From a house down the road from real love…

You were the same words I have spoken since the first day.

We have forgotten the poetry we have weaved together.

But I still use the same rules we have established in writing my love letters.

I have sealed them each in an envelope.

I have kept it under my earth and shall be excavated and sent to your doorstep with a ribbon only when I’m forever gone.

Live through this, and you won’t look back…
Live through this, and you won’t look back…
Live through this, and you won’t look back…

Au Revoir

There’s one thing I want to say, so I’ll be brave
You were what I wanted
I gave what I gave
I’m not sorry I met you
I’m not sorry it’s over
I’m not sorry there’s nothing to save

Our bleeding tongues met in prose and poetry engraved in stones.

So I have bled during confession, yet ceased to do so after which.

And shall bleed of you no more.

I’m not sorry there’s nothing to save… 

I’d be Lying if I Tell you I Didn’t Want This to Coincide With Your Birthday

There might be an ocean of uncertainties right ahead of you, but it definitely makes beautiful sunsets and successful sails.

Today marks an event you’d never imagine would involve your life immensely. But changes do not happen overnight. That’s a fact. Reason why when I got home at the eve of your birthday hours ago, you were the same old kid (little sister) to me the past years.

***

I’d like you to peep through my microscope. This is not as technical as the usual thing, for this shows you the depths of my heart and allows unimaginable magnification of how it is to be Twenty. This is the first time, and may even be the last, I’d allow you to look through it. You may have never seen it this way but maybe one day you will.

You did not actually care what I was doing when I was twenty. All you knew was that we were sharing the same closet we had for years, we were having special dinners every weekend (because you stayed miles away from us for school), and that I occupied (and fixed) your room whenever I visit or stay in my soul’s sanctuary. All of these seemed normal to you; except for the last one which you never really mentioned to me, but I knew seemed extremely stupid to you.

You knew the reasons why I opted to do so. You witnessed the whole course. From travels, to reunions and finally that moment where all came to an end. You lacked the words able to comfort me. Instead, you pulled a string from your heart and tied the pearls and stones that were my tears. Maybe, that made you really think how stupid I was.

You knew another reason. I could call this place paradise and even replace Burnham’s bust with mine. You knew how I fell in love with the people, their way of life, the culture and it’s every little detail that I wanted unharmed (untouched even) and considered my own. I knew you understood me for this that I got you to come with me to unknown yet beautiful places.

There’s one more reason I am just uncertain of whether you have deliberated true or untrue. I was twenty when I became the epitome of “escapism”. I always tuck away the city’s noises via a five-hour trip to the mountains. That was when I read too many books (other than my school readings), written fragmented prose and poetry, and cried only for myself.

You haven’t seen it that way. You haven’t read me between the sighs and laughs we had together. But I see you, dear little sister, a lot like the person I was two years before. Although you were more of a daredevil than I was – a lot stronger, a lot experienced (you’ve got far more credits under your belt) but yes, still a lot careless. Be wary kid, take these few pointers from me, but life will teach you more. You’ve only been twenty for a few hours and there’s certainly a lot for you out there. There might be an ocean of uncertainties right ahead of you, but it definitely makes beautiful sunsets and successful sails.

I am not usually this nostalgic nor this preachy. I normally talk to you in some weird language only the two of us can understand. It sounds funny, but we are somehow already serious that way.

That, and a HAPPY 20th BIRTHDAY, my little Pau.

Day 1: Dear J,

Once upon a February, we woke up wanting to see each other over lunch. We found ourselves in a cozy restaurant – with millions of couples around us. We laughed at how odd this could be. You proposed that we pretend to be one. I only laughed at the idea. At the back of our minds, we knew we actually/already were.

That was the last lunch we ever had together.

A Permission to *Plagiarize Our Baguio Story

“She’s called Summer because she lives in the summer capital. She’s an artist. She’ll meet this man who will be temporarily based in Baguio for a study. They fall in love, but the man has to go back to Manila to his lover.”

This was how a friend proposed to me her concept for another short story for her Creative Writing class. I laughed at how she played with the idea knowing both of us. This is not our story. Neither of us is an artist. But we were both temporarily based in Baguio for some scholastic reason. And yes, we did fall in love.

Ours was a story written in between sighs of exhaust and relief. We were each other’s escape from theories and statements. We were the names sketched at the back of our notebooks during dull classes. We were the love letters on the margins of our drafts. Ours were the emotions traced in your graphs. Ours was the beauty of the words I used in describing art.

Ours was a story of a thousand tales of transit, of reiterated chapters about profound conversations during long afternoon walks, of repeatedly mentioned cups of coffee after dancing in the rain.

But we were just each’s almost lover.

I have already buried our manuscript along with the pens we have used for writing. Our friend’s request might require some sort of excavation, some archival work. Hopefully, the aged and brittle pages are the remaining things to be unearthed – our emotions need not be anymore. They will only be relived in the bibliography – like history, reference, written document of what was.

*Plagiarize – to my friends and i’s dictionary, this means borrow; became a sort of inside joke/term after the plagiarism issue of the SC