El-la, Breathe My Name One More Time

February 12, 2011
By nbu323 BRONZE, Charlestown, Massachusetts
nbu323 BRONZE, Charlestown, Massachusetts
2 articles 2 photos 0 comments

My heart shattered from the get go. As I felt his hands around my waist pull me closer to his body, the bubble of grief that separated us squeezed tighter and tighter until it burst, leaving me helplessly suspended in his arms; the wet remnants of sorrow clinging to his shoulders. Bitter tears fell heavily from my dark eyes and tracked trails down his sweater; his embrace tautened as if he did not trust the cold ground to support my melting body on its own. One slight hand, gently-pressed underneath my right shoulder blade kept me from not living. That flicker of human connection jolted through my blood stream, shooting particles of adolescent longing into my veins. Breathless breaths, runny nose, fused out nerves; this is how I first felt love.

Omnia vincit amour. Love conquers all, even grief. Weeks past, and we never spoke a word of that moment when in the sinuous shadows of the dark I could see the luminous glimmer in his eyes. We never spoke of that instant when he drew me so close that the meandering streaks of salty sorrow stopped moving, jet-tattooed as roots of an ancient willow tree on my fair skin. We never spoke of that moment when in the dead of night, he breathed a whisper to my lips, I heard it and replied. Maybe I could only feel love because the sting of grief and the punch of despair had resolvedly withdrawn to leave me vulnerable in the arms of a boy. Or maybe this was not love at all.
Sorrow, ’sär-(,)?, a feeling of deep distress caused by loss, disappointment, or other misfortune suffered by oneself or others. Is it possible to feel such grief for other people? Yes, apparently. The day came when it was my turn to hold him in my arms. Best friend gone; drugs, they say. He tells me that it is too hard to voice his emotions and I tell him that it is okay, that I understand, even though I do not. He holds my hand one last time and scratches a message across the lined pages of my math homework. Right underneath the equation b2 = 4ac +2a, indistinguishable from the warmth pressed right underneath my rib: It’s too difficult to feel. That, I understood.

Wrong. I was still wrong. We were not in love. The spark of existence, human sentience, thermal tenderness; these things all collapsed after grief left us. We had merely felt a hoax of real love, an imposter that craved for the breakdown of our mutual desire. At the time, I did not understand that in essence, grief was love. These emotional impressions had long since branded themselves inside my mind, and although I had failed to make the connection, personal premonitions of desire, pain for something lost, quelque chose que je ne peux pas expliquer, all pointed to the fact that grief and love felt the same. My capacity to feel, shrunk to a limited circle in which I trapped myself, boxed in like a frantic bird flapping in frenzy to be released, eventually died from overexertion. [I had never known].

Grief brought us together just as it had torn us apart. Crying, we came to each other, tandem as one, fluidly melting into a mass of indistinct limbs as a result of forlorn emotional destitution. I remember the way in which I ran into his arms, the way he scooped me up with inconceivable tenderness and love; love that I now realize was misconstrued by sorrow. Our emotions, although sewn together like chiffon’s filmy fabric and thus easily whisked away by the passing wind, were inseparable from each other, un-weavable by nature. The passion of sorrow tied stitch by stitch into our mortal parallel released itself as the warm fervency of desire for the human flesh and the misery of corporeal despair. An indescribable anguish, yearning for love, and knowledge that it could never exist, spoke to the unattainable unknown. What remains for grief to destroy? Nothing else. I realized that love and grief gravitated toward each other, creating the indefinable emotion that anchored us together. Us, us… the simple, two-lettered word had sounded like hope while grief was still around.

The author's comments:
This is a fiction romance piece I wrote in my English class about a girl struggling with the idea of grief and love.

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