As the Hourglass Runs Out

November 4, 2009
Robbed! The worst thing in life is to be robbed of the things you love and hold dear. For your treasures to be callously taken. It’s a traumatizing thing and it was happening before my very eyes. The woman I loved rested in my arms appearing as fragile and frail as gossamer when I gazed upon her. Slick red sap leaked from the gaping knife wound in her abdomen permeating her favorite Luck of the Irish shirt. My hand pressed down attempting to stem the flow and thinking about the irony of those words. Death stalked about the cold, concrete, and barren warehouse biding his time. He staked out the place like an interloping thief who watched his victim for days memorizing the pattern in her daily routine. Death was like a tree, patient and unbending as he waited for her soul to leave her body behind so that he could coax her into his realm. The soul is the treasure of the physical body and when it left her she would be gone. Death would win his victory. He would steal her from me.
I looked into her half-closed eyes. The pale gray no longer held that shine, that sparkle that had enthralled me completely in its depth and complexity. Only pain marked her brow now. Her lips were tight and thin from the cruelty of its assault upon her mind. I wish that I could take on both pain and death in her place but such a miracle would not occur. Death refused to be deflected by wishful thinking. He was a collector that cannot be persuaded to part with his favorite piece. I didn’t want to give her up but her every heartbeat was the tick of a clock counting down to the last beat, the last breath.
Every second seemed to last forever. This woman was intrinsic to my very existence in the deepest sense of the word. She was the only reason I lived. My only reason for joy, love, my entire world was in my arms and I was without a way to prevent her life from slipping through my fingers like the sands of time through an hourglass. Her every breath became music that filled my mind for while she breathed, she lived. As more time passed they became ragged, resounding as sour notes in the orchestra of sweet memories that played through my mind. The music abruptly stopped. The gray eyes I had been losing myself in for the last year and a half glazed over. Death’s inevitable victory had finally come about. When he took her, he took everything including my ravaged heart. Tears spilled in a river down my face and bathed her shell of a body. In this black hole of a warehouse, I was utterly isolated.
I felt as if I were not party to anything occurring around me. The sun, shining so brightly, was mockingly dancing across her face from a high window. A bird glided past, trilling it’s exultation at being reunited with its mate. How cruel the world is to me in my distress. Shouldn’t it reflect the sepulchral tomb my mind had become? Ghastly demons chased me through the maze-like woods of my mind but there was no escape. I would have to surrender to the anguish, despair, and a life without light. My eyes would be as those of a blind man. Unable to see in this world that had slandered all that was good and had slighted me in the worst way possible.
Nothing I had ever felt in my life could have prepared me for this. The torment bit too deeply and far more excruciating than the time my ribs had broken, the loss of my first puppy, and my unsuccessful suicide all combined. There would be no recovering. No finding my way out of the maze that led back to reality. My reaction surpassed shock and went straight to denial and then immediately to shut down. In the short time since the woman in my arms had departed the world of the living I had become one of the living dead. A zombie. I could move, eat, speak, and interact with people but there would be no feeling. My heart was gone, leaving me dead inside. I had a bottomless pit of darkness and grief to dwell in. There was no end in sight. I don’t think there will be a day or hour when such things like hope and love will return. Those sort of far fetched miracles just don’t happen when you’ve been robbed. As the hourglass of her life ran out of sand, time continued without it. Without her, and in a sense without me.

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