Sunday 31 March 2019

Where the Heart Is

I often gaze at the moon and think of you.  Hoping to meet you there, in dreams.  I often look upon the heart my little sister painted on the wall many years ago.  It too reminds me of you now.  It used to be a girl's way of dealing with her first romantic relationships.  The pain and ache of young love.  But that heart on my bedroom wall has come to mean something equally profound to me, of course.  In that strange way fate has, as it dances with us beyond our notions of time or space, organising association and synchrony that is only later illuminated.  Strange that the symbol of the heart should come to mean so much to me in these recent years.  That I would lose lovers, friends, my own home, and find myself back amidst my childhood realm – where a heart adorns the old room.  Like creation itself was winking at me before these hands had ever decided to build a gate of love.   
    Fame is a strange thing, and love even stranger.  When our public faces and private selves begin to trade deeds, energies and inflections.  We find ourselves wondering who we are now, and who we're becoming.
    Asha, I've always been an angel, and a mortal man, but never one so public.  At least not in this life.  It's strange, isn't it?  To be known.  To have your outlook elevated, your moods studied, your actions mythologized.  No former mortal truly wants to be a demigod among her kin.  To desire that kind of immortality and to actually possess it are very different things.  The burden can break you for a time. 
    Even one as strong as my beloved.   
    That's why the image your heart, I suppose.  Tattooed within my spirit and upon my wall. To remind me of the truth of centre.  To remind me of both the price and reward of love.  It's been a painful thing to carry you in this way, wild one. 
    To be everything and nothing to you.
    My eternal spirit is beyond space, and time.  It gets to watch you grow.  It gets to turn away when appropriate.  When you need your privacy.  It can happily be all things for you.  But here, in this nightmare place, Kashi is bound to flesh.  And limitation.  Become a man, fighting wars. Become a boy lost in the grass, hunting monsters.  Blind and sighted, as my conscious mind struggles to hold on to those fragments of you.
    How best to help you?  
    A baffled king composing beyond even his own comprehension.  Lonely and complicated this life has been, sweetheart.  Like most artists, I imagine.  And this world deifies those who come here speaking of love.  Or kills them.    
    Or both.    
    Sometimes I think the moon and stars and hearts aren't enough to ease the agony of grieving mothers and fathers, or protect the honour of lost, weeping children.  My entire being bursts into utter fury when I think about it.  What this wraith-magic has done to the most vulnerable.  
    The sweetest, kindest members of our family have been abused the worst by these hideous shadow-things beyond the veil, and their sickening priests.  Cowards, all of them.  Asha, if they want to know just how far this once shining realm has fallen, they need only look to how it now treats its innocents.  To look at how poisoned our harbours have become.  They cannot eat money.  They cannot drink plastic.  True magic has left their tongues and fingers, but our family unknowingly call this place 'true history'.
    What a mockery it is, Asha.  A disgusting mockery of everything we stood for.  A perfect system.  One of balance, harmony, and love affairs between all cultures.  Because all cultures shone, and learning of each other in mutual respect was our greatest thrill.    
    This was not always an ashen hill, or a throne of bones.     
    This was our shining blue pearl of All Waters, known throughout the Myriad for its gates and keys and poets. Other worlds came here, Asha, just to walk our gardens.  And hear our songs.  So, I seethe with rage at these corrupted chronologies because I cannot help but feel like I’m wandering through a ruin within a ruin within a ruin.    
    I won’t lie to you, my love.  Kashi fucking hates it here.
    So far from the poet's moon; that scarred thing that now eclipses the sun.  So far from the heroes that once were – this world that oppresses, exploits and defiles.  So, I hold on to my dreams of centre and softly reflected light.  Lanterns, guides, gatekeepers.  The pages of tired, struggling artists.  Famous ones living in both spotlight and shadow.  Hearts on walls that recall lost love.
    I've told you before, my brave girl.  You owe me nothing.  You needn’t hold yourself to any expectation.  I have none.  I love you too much for that.  This lost boy you know by heart and word and image, but have never met face to face.  Friend, lover, stranger.  He grasps how unusual this is, how wonderful and difficult.  He honours your spirit, always.  I’m not asking for a miracle, beloved.  But I am your angel, your guardian.  And so I make no demands, save one.  
    Keep fighting for them.  The lost, and kind.  In a world this fallen they need their heroes again, believe me.  Love fiercely, in every way you can.  And perhaps, should those imaginary stars align perfectly one day, I'll get the chance to look into your eyes again. 
    I still carry all that you saw within my name. 
   Perhaps I’ll get a chance to take you by the hand.  To put my arms around you.  To whisper in your ear of how I love you and how proud you’ve made me.  A simple hope, but earnest.  These things are much for the one who loves, Asha.  As we both know.  One can live by them alone.  That she and I breathe the same air, and that the earth we tread is one.

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