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DoodleScribbles

Scribblings and scrawls of a hopeless romantic soul

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love

Lament of the Dead

I have always known I’d die this way—
Hands reaching for what’s left of the sunset
Wilted and dried
Like a sunburnt flower left in a barren land

Sadness almost feels like a second skin now
Purple bruises scatter from unbidden words
They pierce, they hurt
Reminding me of the borrowed prose I never get to return to the world

They say our entire life flashes before our eyes on our deathbed
But I saw a person instead—
Dimples and heavy brows,
A portrait of the carefree man I met at Bo’s

Something pokes from inside my darkened rib
Was it regret? Guilt? Or something else?
More, more
I need more time, Charon

Let me immortalize this man with words
Soak my pen in desperation, desire and dread
I have always known I’d die this way—
But why must have to be today?

My hands reach for the last of the sunset
I cry for borrowed prose I never get to return to the world

Writer’s Quote Wednesday – Let love shine

Featured quote for Writer's Quote Wednesday

“Love, whether newly born or aroused from a deathlike slumber, must always create sunshine, filling the heart so full of radiance, that it overflows upon the outward world.”

― Nathaniel Hawthorne, The Scarlet Letter

Nathaniel Hawthorne died, on this day, in 1864. May this quote awaken the spirit of love within us all in these trying times when anger, hate and fear are at its height.

Psalm 143:6

I dream in fast forward
Of that which never was
My pale, moon-drenched skin
Shiver ‘neath the grieving stars

I wait in quiet desperation
Feeling nothing of the real world
Seeing only that which
I have not yet held

Between midnight breaths — a poem
Reviving my half dead hope
I spread out my hands to you;
I thirst for you like a parched land
.

this time, i found my breath.

It took me sleepless nights and a slit wrist to unlove you. My eyes, once insignias of misery, now glow beneath the cloudless sky. I no longer freeze on a Bublé song. No longer break on the streets where you used to hold my hands. The forget-me-nots have died under my pillow. And on moonlit nights, I dance.

It took me sleepless nights and a slit wrist to love myself.

Now, I wear a tint of blood on my lips
To remind you of what you left
And will never ever get.




A Letter to Fanny Browne by John Keats

My dearest Girl,

This moment I have set myself to copy some verses out fair. I cannot proceed with any degree of content. I must write you a line or two and see if that will assist in dismissing you from my Mind for ever so short a time. Upon my Soul I can think of nothing else — The time is passed when I had power to advise and warn you against the unpromising morning of my Life — My love has made me selfish. I cannot exist without you — I am forgetful of every thing but seeing you again — my Life seems to stop there — I see no further. You have absorb’d me. I have a sensation at the present moment as though I was dissolving—I should be exquisitely miserable without the hope of soon seeing you. I should be afraid to separate myself far from you. My sweet Fanny, will your heart never change? My love, will it? I have no limit now to my love — Your note came in just here — I cannot be happier away from you — ’T is richer than an Argosy of Pearles. Do not threat me even in jest. I have been astonished that Men could die Martyrs for religion — I have shudder’d at it — I shudder no more. I could be martyr’d for my Religion — Love is my religion — I could die for that — I could die for you. My Creed is Love and you are its only tenet — You have ravish’d me away by a Power I cannot resist; and yet I could resist till I saw you; and even since I have seen you I have endeavoured often “to reason against the reasons of my Love.” I can do that no more — the pain would be too great — My Love is selfish. I cannot breathe without you.

Yours for ever,

John Keats


One of my favorite poets and letter senders, John Keats, died on this day exactly 200 years ago. Sharing this extract from one of his sweetest and poignant letters to Fanny Browne, his betrothed.

Ah, so much love. 💛

Two Ghosts

She finds loneliness in crowded hallways
He finds isolation in busy streets
They are two ghosts, breathing
Living in silent screams

On a bleak night she finds solace
Amongst stars he finds peace
They are two ghosts, breathing
Chasing madness and dreams

we molded this valley of memories with love

i wouldn’t call us
a mistake
this empty valley
that we left behind
once flourished
with laughter
and though the poppies
were long gone
and the river’s
drained with love
i have memories—
i’d go back to them
as I trudge the earth
until, one day,
the trails lead you
back to me

Vignette: Stolen gazes, knowing smiles, paperbacks

Fingers tapping softly on the table, each second a louder beat of the heart. Murmurs, inaudible conversations— your voice drowning the noise of the crowd. Two seconds ago we were strangers, standing at the opposite aisle of a bookstore. You on conspiracies; I on poetry.

Stolen gazes… knowing smiles… paperbacks…

Life’s grand orchestra
Plays a loving melody
For just you and me

Three days later

tied haired woman wearing top photo – Free Neck Image on Unsplash

I must carry on. Live this life, get up, pick the debris of your memories scattered on the floor. Breathe.

The world has not stopped revolving, I see. And my mom’s bacon and egg smell just the same. She lives with me now — for the mean time — using old age as an excuse to tiptoe into my room and check my chest for a heartbeat at night. Don’t laugh. Don’t make the funny face you always do whenever I tell you about my mother’s excessive paranoia. “I know!” I used to say, eyes rolling as I jump into your arms for comfort.

On the way to work, the old man on the street who once sold us matching rings smiles. I touch a finger which now feels bare. At two minutes past 11 o’clock in the morning, a Fat Man explodes over my life. There you are, laughing from a distance, with a woman whose hands are wrapped around your waist. I never thought the space you asked is meant for somebody else.

The sun shines with a blinding white flash in the sky. What a cruel twist of fate to see you two on the fall of Nagasaki. It’s only been three days.

“Are you crying, child?” the old man asks.

I wipe my mascara-stained tears, take a deep breath and walk away. “This is nothing. The people who experienced the black rain had it worse.”

MS

Two years ago, I wrote a Haibun titled Memories Sting. It was supposed to center on the tragedy of love but it somehow alluded to the ordeals of war. Revisiting my old blog posts reminded me of how I love weaving fiction with real history — of how comfortable it was to write Heritage and Some battles.

This story is my attempt to reconnect with the old me. It is also a commemoration of the Nagasaki bombing which marks its 75th year today.

Image via Unsplash

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