This piece was first written and published 2012.
I have edited it now in November, but it’s still a
long text – 3 long A4 pages. I don’t know what it
is… how to label it, I mean – it’s too long to be a
prose poem, and I don’t think it’s a short story
either… It’s certainly not a sweet little biscuit
easy eaten, but maybe it’s a Swedish crisp bread…
He left her. She didn’t die. As she had feared she would. No, but time went on and so did she. An idle day when she had nothing to do and no one had requested her for a long time she passed the time by reading celebrity gossips in a web magazine, and she got caught in an article about a famous manly Hollywood film star, where he was alleged to have said in an interview – as he had his 50th birthday the year before and was single again – he felt lonely sometimes in empty nights. And there was a photo of him too with that special handsome-guy face and big creepy charmer smile saying: “yes I know I am very good looking man and my smile is so appealing and charming, so like me and love me, please”. And this his charismatic look got her to recall the man she once had loved so much, and how he instantly had approached people with his big smile and a nice face. He came into her lonely heart and filled it to the brim, and right from the start she was so deeply in love with him.
Yes, he got people to like him with his charm, but even if that was what he wanted, his frustration and anger soon came next. “Everybody wants something from me”, and “They want to eat me”, he complained to her, and he looked both flattered and disgusted. But this sympathetic look was just a glossy varnish that not for long could disguise his troublesome personality. As soon as they became lovers his angelic manners vanished and he began to treat her hostile and callous. Still he wanted to know everything about her, but then again only to psychologize over her in long and tiring analyses. It didn’t bother him he made her upset – he just said he understood peoples inmost better than they did themselves. His changed ways towards her were hard enough to put up with. But then came those unpredictable and terrifying occasions which lacked all reason, where he lost it completely and seemed to live out the pressure in him in outburst of rage. And he walked around in his apartment and beat on doors and walls with his fists, while he screamed and roared out his wrath and scared her with angry and humiliating words and absurd allegations. He frightened her into crying, but it didn’t stop him only made him feel offended by her and raged he demanded apologies from her. And he attacked her even more when she refused to give him any. When she couldn’t take more she rushed back to her home, devastated and crying. But still she loved him so much.
With time all this allowed her to see his soul and it was such a sad and depressing sight. It was like standing in the door to an empty and burned out room. One could see some fragments of trash on the floor, most of the walls were black with soot, the fire had burned out long time ago and the smell of it had vanished and there was nothing in the air, but silence and emptiness. Still one could see it once had been a room for home life, but everything in it and all trace of him were gone.
But he had a sharp mind and a few faded memories from times when his soul still was vibrant and this together with his faith gave him visions and ambitions for a better life and a happier way to relate to world and people around. He tried desperately to bring back sentiments in those memories and into his present daily life – all in order to get rid of the painful insensitivity torturing him. Meanwhile he imitated how he recalled what it was like to socialize with people, based on his current intellectual understanding of emotional reciprocity in human relations. He thought he could fool himself and others to believe in his acting. No charmer smile could, however, help him those painful anguished moments when he faced his truth, haunted by his inner ghosts. He was what he was, abused since infant and never receiving the love and care he needed during childhood, and as an adult dealing with unspeakable horrors and hardships – and never getting peace anywhere. He was shown in those horror moments such an empty and lonely creature he was shaped into in a barren and inhuman world. And there was no mercy for him.
In those times of deep and boundless anxiety he never wanted to see anyone for hours or days. And all he afterwards could say to explain his absences was to say he had been sick. And often he was too, as he didn’t take care of himself properly. Or he explained that other people fussed with him causing him all kinds of problems. And often it was like that too, as he never were there he should be and did what he should do, and never could follow a line. And everything in his life was a mess all the time, all the time. And his head ached. And his stomach ached. And he couldn’t sleep. And the horrors he had been through haunted him in flashing images behind his eyeballs. And he brutally shoved her away verbally abusing her for next call her back. And she always came as she loved him so much.
There were moments when she hated him for how badly he treated her and regretted everything she had done and still did for him – gave him money and classes and wrote his home exams and put up with all his manners. But then again she could only see the battered child and young man he once had been, and she couldn’t hate him for long and not blame him for his bad behaviour. Her compassion disarmed her common sense. But it was certainly not his immaturity but his manly charisma that once had attracted her to him and still did. She felt like none before had come so close to her and it tied her even more to him. She was thinking – regardless of the costs, he got her back in writing and loving again. And she believed she would always love him for that.
But for him it wasn’t like that. He kept their relationship secret of fear his friends and countrymen would abandon him and make a fool of him if they found out about it. And one night he asked her to promise and swear never to write any about him, or even talk about him. It was such an outstanding and outrageous demand and she lost her temper and became instantly mad, telling him he this time had passed the line too far. And then they had the worst and longest quarrel ever. All she ever could write about was her own experiences, she claimed. He ignored her arguments as he apparently didn’t gave her the credit to have a story and experiences of her own at all, but only went on accusing her of using him for love and for inspiration and for getting a better health by stealing his youth. “That is what is called projections”, she said sarcastic. “Who of us use the other? If any do?” But in spite all those awful quarrels and breakups, she still loved him so much.
They had been together less than a year when time had come for him to move on and leave town for higher education. He told her he in future wanted to get a training that would provide him free therapy that would help him to personally function better, as well as making it possible for him to work with people with similar problems as his. She was thinking that him as a therapist would be a real disaster and suggested him cautiously to focus on management in that field and a shorter training. For some mysterious reason made her advice him very delighted. And maybe he will make it all the way, she thought to herself while they were talking. After all, he was still pretty young. Whether or not he would make it, he would never be able to forget her – because she had given him the keys to move on and become somebody. And he was aware of what great work she done for him and said he would always be grateful for her help and support. And that he should always love her for that.
His coming move made her very unhappy as she feared they would lose contact, but he said it would only happen if they wanted it to happen, “you’ll never hear me say goodbye”, he said. He seemed to believe talk like that would comfort her. But she only felt dumped and this time she was the one captured by her inner demons telling her brutally she was only someone to remember, never belonged to anyone, but only for a time a tool to use and throw away. Whatever he said to her, she was nothing now but a bleeding, tormented and humiliated piece of meat. Lose him – then life was over for her and all she wanted was to die. Because she loved him so much.
And she collapsed and cried non stop. Because she could cope with everything but not with his lies. When they met after two lonely days of constant crying and he held her tight she started to cry again and now again she simply couldn’t stop. And he held her all the way through, and didn’t push her away this time. And then he made her some herbal tea with honey and they sat in silence in his living room with only the light from the street lamp outside the window, and she said quietly “I love you, you know”. And he said “and I love you too, but I wish you would trust me…” And she said “Yes, but I don’t”. But after that night she was calm and cried no more. But she still loved him so much.
And he never said goodbye, but he never kept in touch either. And she moved on with her life. If she occasionally came to think about him, hatred and bitterness threaten to overwhelm her causing her feel damaged and vulnerable. So she avoid thinking about him. But she never forgot he always had an open door for her, and that he for a time was her best and closest friend. She could drop by every single day, for tea and talk or just sneak in and creep under his blanket and put her arms around his solid and warm body. And she was in those moments completely happy only to breathe his sweet breathing. And her now empty hands and arms couldn’t forget how lovely it was back then to touch him, and how much she once loved him.
When she later came to look at that photo in the gossip magazine of the smiling man she could hardly believe it was true she once had fallen for that kind of charming rascal. Or that one could love as passionately as she had done, and then simply survive the loss of such big love; Not to speak of – forget the loved one in such a short time! If that is how it is, she strongly felt, it can set off with love – she never wanted to love again! But, she noted, it was the same for her as for the glossy celebrity-guy in the web magazine – she too felt lonely sometimes at nights.
A year after he had left her he stood one day at her front door and surprised her with a visit. And he came into her hall as if yesterday, and as if he had the right to show up like that. And he smiled and said “you’re looking good!” But she didn’t, she could see in the hall mirror behind him. And he sat on her sofa and talked about his life and his problems with people. “The same self-pitying man”, she thought while listening to him. And then he said he had to visit some other friends and family, but he would come back later the same evening. She said nothing but looked at him and he was so familiar and still he was a stranger. And she let him go and locked her door and was thinking for a while. Then she called him on phone and said “don’t come back here again”. Because she didn’t love him any more.