I tend to be an emotional writer, for the most part. Most of my stories (and all of my poems) have roots in some deep, powerful emotion that I feel or have felt and want to convey. Sometimes these emotions express themselves in poetry, sometimes in short fiction pieces, but once in a while I’ll sit and down and end up writing something that basically falls into the category of creative nonfiction. It’s about some important event in my life, and usually ends up just being a way to vocalize my thoughts and feelings around that point in time. The story I have for you today is one such story. I wrote it earlier this year during a really difficult, depressed time in my life. Maybe some of you will connect to it. At any rate, enjoy.
The Words Between the Lines
You were the words between the lines, everything that was subtle and beautiful about the world. You swept into my life like some fairytale prince to save me from the villains who hurt me and the demons that haunted my dreams. I was so broken, so shattered, I couldn’t even see myself as human anymore, but you could. You were gentle to me, gentle and kind. You picked me up from the ground I’d been thrown on, and showed me that not every character in my life’s story was a villain, that there were still some heroes to be found, if I only knew where to look. I saw adventure in your eyes, beckoning me to press on and explore. Not every tale has a tragic ending, you seemed to say whenever I looked at you. You said my story would be a happy one.
You were the music between the notes. Your soft words fell on my ears like a symphony, stirring me to greater depths of feeling. It was you who first called me beautiful, you who told me that no one ever had the right to say otherwise. The way you cared for me in my pain and sickness lifted my spirits as if I was listening to a sweet chorus that let me believe, if only for a moment, that I wasn’t hurting at all. Your strong arms around me held me close, and our spirits sang together like angels in the gathering twilight. We danced to the music in our souls, pure and lovely. There was great beauty in those moments, listening to that music.
You were the light in the void. You showed me that I wasn’t alone, that someone else would help me share my burden. You touched the emptiness in my heart and filled it with your love. I learned to laugh again, because of you. You coaxed me out of my shell a little, trying to show me that I didn’t need to hide. I slowly began to lean on you in the tough times as you encouraged me to trust you. I started to look for you when things got rough, always searching for that beacon of hope, you who would let me cry when I couldn’t make sense of my world.
But you weren’t there. I searched and searched for you, but you had disappeared into the darkness. Many were the nights I lay awake screaming your name as the emptiness inside threatened to tear me apart. I looked for you in the words, but your story had taken a different road. I looked for you in the music, but the notes were discordant. I looked for you in the void, but the light had been extinguished. Gone. All hope had disappeared with you, and the pain finally engulfed me in a storm I had no strength to fight against. I almost allowed myself to be swallowed up by the emptiness. And then you came back. I saw you, heard you, felt you, as if at a great distance, a dim figure shrouded in mist. But I’d gone back into my shell. I wouldn’t let you see me anymore. It was the hardest thing I’ve ever done, saying goodbye to you. You don’t know the eternity I spent in the dark, senseless, deaf, and blind. But I had to say goodbye. I watched you walk away again, and it was all I could do to not scream your name and beg you to come be mine again. But I couldn’t. You’re gone now, gone forever, and I’m all alone. You were the words between the lines, and now the page is blank.