Mikaila - Every gesture of tenderness from another person.
A Musing About Loneliness
What is it?
It is a concept we so rarely describe in detail.
We've made up a specific word for it-
Three little syllables-
Just so that we can say it and be done with it,
And escape the contemplation.
But I know my own loneliness cannot be captured,
Cannot be encompassed,
By merely the word.
What is loneliness?
It comes in all shapes and sizes,
That can be big or small,
Sudden or excruciatingly slow,
Sharp or fuzzy at the edges.
It can even be comforting.
What is it about loneliness that is so insidious?
Harder to rid yourself of than fear
Or even such tricky, barbed things as doubt
Loneliness doesn't stick.
You stew in it.
It is beginning to occur to me that I don't believe,
Once one realizes loneliness for the first time,
That one is ever truly rid of it again,
Even for a second.
I think it is a permanence that we as a race refuse to acknowledge most of the time.
Some forms of lonely are fairly benign-
The little tingle on the edges of you, when you are home alone and the house is silent,
And for no apparent reason at all-
No sadness, no fear, no thought that is particularly unpleasant that you must drown out-
You nonetheless feel the compulsion to switch on the television
Even if you won't watch,
Just to break the stillness with a human voice besides your own.
Then there are the darker types, the truly ensnaring ones,
The lonelinesses born of the memory of times when,
Perhaps, you were less lonely,
Or even thought that you had flushed the feeling from your soul entirely.
Loneliness is an otherness,
An alien thing that lives in your heart,
That makes you question whether there is anyone out there who would have you
If they knew
What was on the inside.
There is the type of loneliness that creeps up on you and follows nipping at your heels like a shadow on the pavement as you move through your day,
Reminding you, whispering in your ear that here you felt less alone, and there, and that those places are full now,
Because those times have passed and not had the courtesy to clean up their cobwebs-
Memories linger in certain little spots, and collect like dust little pockets of loneliness that grab you all of a sudden,
The way forgotten spiderwebs stick in your hair as you move through an old house.
October 26th, 2013
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