She’s solid gold, but she’ll never be mine. She’s like crystal, but it’s clear we’ll never be together. Yay, misery puns. If I let myself go, I could fill pages with this shit.
She can’t see, she can’t tell, that she’s brewing a poison that’ll take me down, and her… and I drain the tainted cup she hands me like a shot. The caring looks she always — always? — okay, not always, but still, sometimes gives me… the easy way she lets it slide when my feelings slip out… the sympathy with what I’m going through that’s written all over her face… are those supposed to help?
Yesterday, as I was leaving, she hugged me and said, “Goodnight, Werther dear!” — Werther dear! It was the first time she’d called me “dear”, and it shot through me like lightning. I’ve replayed it in my mind a hundred times, and yesterday, when I was trying to fall asleep and my brain wouldn’t shut up about everything, I suddenly said: “good night, Werther dear!” and just had to laugh at myself after that…
Hey, Will, I’m really grateful for how much you care about this, and I know you mean well with your advice, but I’m asking you to please not worry about it. Let me work this one out — as drained as I am, I still have enough strength to make it through this.
I have so much respect for religion, you know that, and I get that for a lot of withered branches and parched people it’s the water of life. Just — does it have to be that for everyone? When you look at the world, you see millions of people it hasn’t been that for, millions it won’t be that for, whether they’ve heard the Word or not, so why should it have to be that for me? Doesn’t Jesus say Himself that they will be with Him whom His Father has given unto Him? And like… what if I wasn’t given unto Him? what if the Father wants to keep me for Himself, the way my heart keeps telling me? — please don’t take that the wrong way; don’t read sarcasm into these sincere words; I’m laying my whole soul out in front of you; otherwise, I’m going to wish I hadn’t even gotten into it — like I generally don’t like throwing words around about all this stuff I know so little about (though, arguably, neither does anyone). Isn’t it just the human condition to suffer what you’re allotted and drink your cup when it comes to you? — And if God Almighty found the cup too bitter on his human lips, why should I act tough and pretend it tastes sweet to me? And why should I be embarrassed, in those terrifying moments when my whole existence teeters between being and un-being, when the past flashes like lightning over the dark chasms of the future and everything around me crumbles and the world collapses with me? Aren’t those the moments, when you’re forced into total withdrawal, out of touch with yourself, crashing too hard to save, when you scream, with all your useless, desperate strength, “My God! My God! Why have you forsaken me?” And should I be embarrassed to scream it, should I dread getting to that point, when even He couldn’t avoid it, He who crumples up the sky like tissue paper?
She called me out on my “extremes”! Ahhh, in the sweetest way! My “extremes”, that sometimes I let a glass of wine turn into a whole bottle. “Imagine me saying, ‘Don’t do it!’” she said, “just imagine me!” “Imagine?!” I said. “You think you need to tell me…?! Me, imagine!! — I don’t even imagine! You’re always right there in front of me. Today I sat for hours on the spot where you stepped getting out of the car.” She changed the subject to stop me getting further into it. Will, I am gone! She can do whatever she wants with me.
GOD! So much of the time now I go to bed wishing, hell, sometimes even praying I won’t wake up again… and in the morning I force my eyes open, see the sun again, and feel miserable. Ahh, I wish I had some excuse, if I could blame the weather, or someone else or some failed project or something, so that the weight of this awful checkedoutness wouldn’t all be on me… fuck me! It’s painfully clear this is all my fault, — not fault! the point is… the source of all this misery is deep inside me, just like the source of all that joy used to be. I mean, aren’t I the same guy who used to float around overflowing with feeling, finding paradise wherever he went, who had enough room and enough love in his heart to hold the whole world inside it? And now this heart is dead, the rapture tank’s empty, my eyes are dry, and without tears to relax them, my thoughts squeeze my forehead… I’m in so much pain, because I’ve lost the thing that was the only source of joy in my life: the sacred, invigorating force I built worlds around me with… it’s gone! — When I look out my window at the far-off hills, see how the morning sun above them breaks through the clouds and lights up the quiet grasslands, and the gentle stream snakes towards me through its leafless willows, — ahhh! When all this magnificent nature just hangs there in front of me as lifeless as a postcard, and all that BLISS can’t pump a single tear of joy from my heart up into my brain, and this dumbass just stands there, with transcendence right in front of him, like a dried-up well, like a cracked bucket… so many times I’ve thrown myself to the ground and prayed to God for tears, like a farmer praying for rain when the sky blazes above him and the earth is parched.
But, ahhh, I can tell, God doesn’t just hand out rain and sunshine when we whine for them, and… those times that it’s such torture for me to look back on now, what made them so blessed, other than me waiting patiently for His Spirit and drinking down the joy He poured out over me with my whole, deeply grateful heart!?
The number of times I’ve been this close to just throwing myself at her! God knows what that DOES to you, seeing so much loveliness going back and forth in front of you and not being allowed to touch it; and, I mean, touching is such a natural human impulse. Don’t babies try to grab everything that gets their attention? — And me?
I’ve got so much, and these feelings for her swallow it all, I’ve got so much, and without her it’s all nothing.
It makes me want to rip my chest open and smash in my skull, how little we can actually DO for each other. Ah, the love, the joy, the warmth and delight that I don’t bring to life, no one else can give me, and all the peace in my heart can’t make someone else happy when they’re standing there frozen and powerless in front of me.
Yeah, it just gets clearer to me, Will, clearer and clearer, how little it actually matters whether you exist or not… so little. One of Lotte’s girlfriends came over, and I went into the next room to grab a book, I couldn’t focus, and finally I got out my laptop to write you. I could hear them talking faintly; they were telling each other meaningless stuff, gossip: how X got married, how Y’s sick. Super sick.
“She’s got this hacking cough, her cheekbones are practically poking through her skin, she keeps passing out; there’s no way she’s gonna make it,” the friend said.
“N…. is in such bad shape too,” Lotte said.
“I know, he’s so bloated…”
And my hyperactive imagination launched me over to these poor people’s bedsides: I could see them, how reluctantly they turned their backs on life, how they — Will! And these chicks were talking about it the way you’d talk about it if, like — a stranger was dying. — And when I look around and see this room, and Lotte’s clothes and Albert’s files all around me, and the furniture that feels so homey to me now, even this trash can, and I think: See how much you mean to this house? Everything. Your friends treasure you! You make them so happy, and you feel in your heart like they couldn’t live without you; but — if you went away, if you split out of this circle? Would they — how long would they feel the hole that your loss tore into their lives? How long? — ahhh, we’re so transient, that even in the one place where we can actually be certain we exist, where we leave the one real mark of our being, in the thoughts, in the souls of our loved ones, even there we fade away, disappear, inevitably, and so fast!
Ahhhh, this hole! This horrible HOLE I feel here in my chest! — I keep thinking if once, just ONCE, you could press her against your heart, it would fill this hole right up…