When the heart’s gone

When we said, “For better or for worse,” some dewy-eyed part of us hypothesized a forever walk under an innocent Jacaranda, purple Cherub-flowered tunnel, through sickness or fortune, seamlessly walking to the sweetest song, hand in hand, laughing or smiling, kissing or just thinking of each other. But as the years rolled by, some wistful reverie made us theorize creating our own tunnel, out of the wood and golden auburn leaves that remained: if not something surreal, then something more earthly, natural, like a soft, glinting Maple Tree tunnel in Autumn with its own subdued, slightly muted enthusiasm. But then time being the strongman he is, shaped the heated metal of our relationship on an anvil of work, pressure and forgotten dreams. And this made us practical, and we stopped chasing the will-o’-the-wisp, and made the most of the embers on the hearth, prodding to create a quick spark now and then, because little affection is better than faking something long gone. But merciless fate changed our work shifts: you working as a teacher from 9 to 5, and I working my call center shift starting at 6. And the hour between throbbed with a jaded you, coming home after battling unnecessary childhood angst, real trauma and a profession noble but hardly helping foot the bills, and the black coffee lay on the table, with a white sheen on it, perhaps embodying the pretense we’d become: a couple purely mechanical, almost machine like. We drank in silence with the occasional forced smile, said our goodbyes with a façade of a kiss, and I left, returning with bloodshot eyes, to find you gone with a note saying, “Heat the sandwich up. I left it in the fridge,” and so, I guess we both think now; never nostalgically or even practically, but just impulsively about where we went wrong, and I guess we both have thoughts of an affair or a fling, but some clockwork keeps us ticking, just like the whiskey I drink secretly once I’m done with the sandwich, trying to wash away a memory of a memory, or a simulacrum of when we said, “For better or for worse.”

© Nitin Lalit Murali (2018)

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    1. Did I ever tell you that I have a crush on the comments you leave on my posts? They’re so erudite, introspective and beautiful. Thank you so much. That made my day.

    1. Haha. True. No country for an older couple, I guess. On a side note he’s a great writer. I’ve only read that book and I have The Road with me, but that book makes you reach and literally beg for catharsis, but the beauty of it is that you get none. Thanks Bruce.

    1. Thank you very much, my friend. I’m glad you liked that particular image I used, and even more so, that you enjoyed the piece. Yeah some pieces aren’t happy, but life isn’t idyllic too.

    1. Thank you so much Chelsea. No this one is fictional. It’s actually inspired by one minute of what John Piper said in one of his sermons, when I listened to them. I guess it just stayed with me, and I weaved a story out of it. Thanks again.

    1. Thank you so much. A lot of relationships are like this sadly. I removed your comment from spam, but I guess I’ll reply here. What you told me was some creepy crap. Anyhow my FB page has seven followers and is up and running. My writing there is very different. I just pen down my thoughts and use a purer stream of consciousness approach. You can check it out. I’m working on another project as well, and if all goes well, I’ll take an extended (much needed) vacation, and post rarely here. I’ll keep you informed. And I’m glad you liked it.

      1. Lol! If I tell you everything about that guy you’d probably faint. But it’s still better an experience than that girl you have referred to in the poem where you wrote ‘I don’t love you’ a million times 😂😛😝

        Send me a link to the fb page. I looked for it on your blog, it’s not there…I saw the insta page. Why so colorless huh? And yes, keep me informed for sure!

      2. Haha. It’s a crazy world. I’ll post the link somewhere on your blog, but delete it okay. It’s personal page, and I don’t want weirdos arriving there. The problem is I just use one colourless app and post stuff on Instagram. I should use other apps too!

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