What Could Have Been, and Then Not.

Dear you,

I cannot do this. We cannot do this.

You have successfully disarmed me, stripped me naked. With what and how, I honestly don’t know. The last few nights have left me utterly overwhelmed. Vulnerable. I’m scared shitless.

Perhaps you think nothing of it; I don’t know what you’re thinking, really. But before this acquaintance gets complicated any further, please understand that I have to nip it at the bud before it blooms into anything and something I will no longer have any control of.

The last few days had me finding slowly reacquainted with the past’s painful shadow. You make me want to wear pink and giggle. Tolerate dickery and playfulness. Run barefoot through Freedom Park’s grassy field. Chain smoke and roll some joints of Sagada weed. Chug down a few bottles of beer in some dimly lit bar. Pout and rant and make pakipot like a 5-year old and still expect to be chased after a huge fight. Prove to you that I’m the coolest girlfriend you can ever have. You make me want to take care of you, to fuss over you, to be falsely mad at you so you will quit smoking. You make me blush unashamedly every time you catch me off guard. You make me realize what I have been yearning and missing out all this time – tenderness.

But I cannot allow her to resurface. She always gave everything she had, and when she did, she became self-destructive. What you have experienced in this brief encounter is a glimpse of a ghost, vainly trying to get out. What she doesn’t know is that she is dead.

You asked me that one thing that can make me truly happy. I think I can answer that now.

It’s coming into terms with myself, and living with the resolve that I will not allow myself to be that vulnerable and giving and stupid again.

I don’t know how I would live with myself after this, but I had a life before you. And I was fine with that. It was cold, lonely. But it made my heart intact, from breaking further from what remains of its shattered state. But you and your quiet strength make a mockery of what I have carefully crafted to protect myself all these years – trying to appear like I have it altogether, that I am strong, impenetrable. The Bitch Goddess.

I cannot, must not fall for you. And so forgive me for what I am about to do to you.

I’m walking away.

And this, perhaps, is the most selfish decision I have ever made. And I know I will regret it.

Take care, big guy. I could have almost loved you.

I Wish You Well

Like so many before you,
and perhaps, after you,
I thought you fancied me,
and perhaps, loved me a little.

exempli gratia

(you came to me wounded, almost broken.
i wanted to fix you, but before I was done,
you cowardly return to the one whom
you fled from in the first place.)

(you attempted to write a poem,
and even though i cringed
reading it, i loved you for doing so,
and at the same time, aching to edit it)

(you spoke well of all the wonderful things
we can do together,
and i thought it was rather sweet that
you jacked off looking at my picture,
as i was listening to you, wondering which
picture you liked best)

(you said I was beautiful over and over,
and because i don’t take compliments well,
I thought you were being silly,
especially when you proposed.
you actually wanted to marry me. Gasp.)

(and You, whom this crappy poem is really for,
and at this point I really don’t care if its a crappy
attempt at free verse
and whom I thought of writing of in the first place,
well, there wasn’t much you did, except that
you really talked to me.

but i saw you mirroring each other, it’s sick.
juvenile, even.)

What was i supposed to make out of it?
i, who pride myself for being unassuming,
no expectations, no disappointments
(as a friend across the pond once told me).
But there was always that promise
of something, that I actually held on.

You are a sweet mistake.

You, who are many, came fleeting
and you never really stayed.
It was always the other woman, the fixture of
somebody old and familiar,
or somebody new and exciting.

Fucking go.

And so, good luck to you, to all of you.
i wish [she fucks] you well.

Of Broken Promises

I noticed that I write between finished accounts and new ones. I simply cannot distract myself during an ongoing project. Perhaps that’s just how I operate. Like a horse.

Lately though, I have been in such a lull that it took me quite some time to snap out of it. Spacing out between meetings, sleeping late, staring at the blank screen, picking on food, no drive at all. I was beginning to be pissed at myself for being unproductive, but no matter how I drag myself from one meeting to another, conduct brainstorming sessions, I still preferred to lay down and sleep. Sure, we do get tired sometimes, and we should allow ourselves to rest for a moment or two, to take a breath and calm ourselves when things don’t pan out the way you wanted it to. When situations or people disappoint us, it takes a while to get over it. Recently, I had a growing share of people promising things but not fulfilling their end of the bargain. I don’t bother going after them anymore. I learned my lesson not to humiliate myself that way. Let them be. Let karma take care of them, I always thought.

When I lost a recent lover to natural circumstances, I was in a state of denial that thinking about him was not an option, and that work was my refuge, even my strength. While most of us succumb to depression, I didn’t. I thought I was done with love, and that I never really loved him anyway; he was just someone who happened to be there. I cannot afford to be weak. Many people depend on me, and I cannot ignore my responsibilities.

I was at a Funeral Home visiting a friend whose father died when I heard a loud wail coming from the other room. I had a phone call to make and stepped outside. A new body was being laid to rest in the other room, and a trail of family members followed the coffin being placed in the room’s center. I proceeded to make the call, and was about to head back when I heard whispers from the old ladies. Suicide. Boyfriend. Young. Seventeen. He left her. Pregnant.

I looked up in their direction and saw a huge portrait of a very young, beautiful girl being set up near the coffin. That’s all I needed to know to make out her story. I felt my knees buckle and my heart swell and before my parents saw me, I rushed to the car and locked myself in and cried.

I cannot be that girl. I am not weak. I am not weak. So he fucked me over. He broke his promise. But who am I to keep him?

I’m not exactly sure if I miss the person; I think I miss the routine more. Of talking until I fall asleep, exhausted, and waking up to find him still there. Of being reminded to take water and Vitamin C’s everyday. Or being sung Happy Birthday to in the middle of the airport terminal before boarding flight, and the weekly bouquet of roses. And because he saw right through me, and fulfilled all my wishes and secret dreams unknowingly, I grew rather fond of him. He took care of me. He really, really took care of me. What I didn’t know was that I was in deeper than I thought I was.

I was prepared for such a loss, always have been. But I never learned to grieve properly. Not until now.