An Answer

You were searching for coffee beans and you accidentally stumbled upon one of the pieces I wrote about heartbreak. I defined it as the blankness in her gaze as she lay on the hospital bed and dragged her breathing like a crippled foot.

You wrote, in response, that I have been in thousand storms and had my heart splintered into million, despairing shards. That I have earned my right to this life by living through the devastation of it all.

But she wasn’t my heartbreak; she was the thread that connects my pieces one after the other — my aspirations, my fiasco, my little victories, my glum days, my glorious dawns, my secret selves and private languages — only to have her violently thrown into the gutter, into the mist until all I am is nothing but an acrid and sullen rain.

I wish I can dance in barefoot on the wreckage of everything and mock this grey, grey land but I cannot. Death had unraveled my thread and replaced her with a white ocean of silence and a bubble of grief.

I do not know if these two are inhabiting me or if I am inhabiting them, but I see life through the refracted lens of my sorrow and I live it through the ocean of my isolation — sixteen by six under, drowning myself day by day.

I was wrong when I wrote about that heartbreak. I was wrong when I defined it as the blankness in her dead eyes as she stares at the ceiling, at the sawdust, at the vacuity and the whiteness of it all.

I was wrong when I summed it as her parched lips and her opened mouth, as the beads of sweat on her forehead, as her husk, broken voice and her incoherent strings of words asking for a drop of water. It was not heartbreak.

Death took her away from me and replaced all her warmth and laughter and living days with an assurance that I will never see her again, and all I have on my hand is this frozen bubble of grief. No, it was not heartbreak — not at all.

It was devastation.


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