Thursday, September 11, 2014

I Do

Somehow, I completely forgot about this post. It has been sleeping in my drafts since July. The only reason I can think of as to why I forgot about this is that I have wanted to write about something happy for so long. This is not one of them. Well, better late than never. Today, it will now see the light of day, but still half-sleeping, I guess. Warning: this is one of those not-quite-short drivels that I usually write. You have been warned.


One day you will marry, and eleven years of waiting now force me to confront the reality, clear as daylight, that I can no longer deny: I will not be the man waiting for you at the altar, watching you walk at the aisle, closer to God and the man of your dreams, the people you hold dear to witness the wedding you rightfully deserve. I can only wish that I am the groom, and though my life will never be the same again, know this: what you mean to me, who you are to me, will remain, as though the years ahead will be quite like the day when I came to realize that all the people I have known and met hold fragments of you. This I know with all the honesty that hindsight can offer a man so broken. And it is through these acquaintances that I try to gather, one by one, my memories of the girl I once knew, so that maybe one day I can make the pieces whole, cluster them until they resemble your familiar completeness. I will live them so that I may never forget.

This desire, a yoke that sometimes I fear I was born to carry like an inheritance that no one wants, shall be mine to endure until the earth reclaims my mortal coil. But until that day, I will write about you even on days and nights when the right words fail to course themselves through my pen. I will sing songs about you even when my voice tells me not to, because there is nothing a man can do to stop his heart from wanting to be heard, like a bleeding that just would not heal. I will sketch you despite trembling hands, for I have long understood that fatigue comes from difficult and restless labor, oftentimes beyond what tired bodies can manage to sustain, and even then it will have to be done because people who live by the gift and curse of their hands know no other way.

I will run. I will sprint. I will join marathons. One way or another, I will let my feet take me to places I have never been to. For all I know, you might be there, somewhere, or you might not. Nothing is certain, or will ever be now, so anywhere is a good place to get lost without expecting to be found. After all, you are every direction I am bound to take — north of where I am, which is south of my present, west of my past, and east of my future. You are everywhere all at once.

I may not be the one to take you for my wife, nor you the one to take me for your husband, but know that I still do: I do recognize you for who you will become — a woman intent on raising her own children at the right time with the right man, a man who I can only aspire to be; a woman destined for greatness, of which I feel humbled, notwithstanding that fate would not let us share the same path, for as you negotiate the heights and turns to your pedestal I will remain outside everything you will build along the way, and all I can do is to accept my solitude as I am solitary in this acceptance and more, yet hoping just the same that the universe be gentler, favoring your prayers because I understand how it is to live with frustration, and it is enough that you be spared at my expense. I am strong because you are my strength. Let it be that way.

I do. I do take you as my eternal muse, giving wings to my words so that they may take flight, take dominion over the skies, even as they are weighed down by the memories that the world has imposed upon them, as though it is the penalty that my words need to suffer for daring to breach the comfort of silence, for when nothing is said or written, hearts find no reason to move mortals. In the stillness of life, all we will ever need is a pulse. No lovers. No romance. No attention for the greatness in small things. We will live with just our vital signs, and that could be enough. But life is violent, disquiet being its own parlance to dampen our fiery confidence that nothing can go wrong. But that is a tall tale. Some things go wrong as some other things go right, and to find out, we must take risks. I do, or I did, with the words that have found their way to you, and they had to return to where I am, having been read and sent back with urgent dispatch, with a response so heavy and light at the same time that they almost cancel out the plethora of emotions they elicit, until all that is left are my words and the wings you have given them. They still fly, even in my dreams.

I do. I do realize that greater sorrow beckons, the kind that will tax my heart so completely that it will have to plead for its life, question God why it had to suffer the way it had to, beseech the universe to grant it the happiness it probably deserves, no matter how small, no matter how late, because the promise of better days feels so near, so reachable, so possible that my heart can almost taste them, wrap itself around them with no intention of letting go. But promises are neither yours nor mine to give and take for we have none. In sickness. In health. For richer. For poorer. Until death do us part. Or until life itself does, again and again, as it already had a long time ago, and I am yet to see the last of this parting, hoping that it has one. I hope it does. I do.

What kind of man says these things a little too late, I do not know. For so long I have wanted to know myself in your eyes, and for the life of me I am yet to understand why each time I looked at you you always looked another way, as though you were searching for someone else, and it is only now, a little too late for everything, if not a lot too early for nothing, that I realize how right I am, that you have finally found the one you have been searching for all your life. In your eyes I can see a man I barely recognize.

Know that I still hope of becoming your wedding singer, for now I understand that it will be the closest I can get to the altar with you, even if you will be with another man. I will sing your song for him, and his for you, and when all has been said and done it is only then that I will get to sing my songs to you, for you, even if I have to do so all by my lonesome, and I do not really mind if I have to. After all, I have been doing it for years. But one day, I will stop. I intend to do so. I do. I will find peace in my silence.

Or with the woman who deserves all the love I could have given you.


Anonymous said...

And the first thing that comes to my mind is this: Love will always keep us alive.
I don't know the relevance with this post. 😄

SPLICE said...

That reminds me of an Eagles' song. :)

ken vincent said...

And this, I see a dreadful romance. For every girl we had casted our love upon, I wish they would have known right there and then the love we are willing to offer -- an eternal vow. But, life has to go on and there is so much more in the sea as the saying goes that better deserves that love.

Orange said...

this broke me