61yrs • M
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||A Bitter Hue
"I stared and stared and stared, and I stared and stared and stared.
I looked at her face, her eyes were closed, and I tried to write her existence in my mind.
I tried to memorize it. I closed my eyes and I opened them, and then shut them again."
Her hair, her round oval face. It was familiar in a way nothing had ever been familiar before. There had been love, deep love, with others. But nothing so mirrored in life whatever beauty was inside him as she did, all her faults irrelevant personality quirks that posed no real threat or question.
Beauty, he defined it, and stared at her, trying to memorize it so when she was gone, he would not yearn for it. Time was ticking, and there was finite time between this moment and then, when, that beauty would begin its descent into the past. Like the color in her skin, it would fade into a pale gray, for the blood would cease to flow, the heart would cease to pump, and her hair would shrivel and she would breathe no more.
He leaned down, holding his hand under his eye to prevent the tears from waking her, and listened to the murmur of her breaths. Fleeting joy in his heart now, every breath a finite event not to perpetuate itself through years of laughter and interaction.
Finite now, knowing that his analytical mind, if left at its own whims, would calculate how many breaths remained, fearing the dwindling of the number as each went by. The thought made him wish for her to breathe slower, to stop altogether each minute, to last twice, maybe three times as long.
And reality returned, for it was not his counter that dictated the outcome of this. No extension could be provided.
He leaned up as he had done 400 times already, reacting to the same series of thoughts, the hope, the means to achieve it, and then the acceptance of its eventual and difinitive loss.
He stared at her round beautiful head, and knew not the world that existed beyond its expiration. What was it, he thought, what was it that mattered if she never coughed again or held his hand.
The color would go, and he would be colorless, standing in a world of muted grays. Silent, for even his eyes would scream silently.
And then he believed everything would be okay, that he would survive, that life has color, perhaps, and he would survive. But at that moment, he had forgotten about the nature of the finite world, and that she had only a set number of breaths left.
Some moment, soon, he would find that information again. And the story will repeat itself until he loses it again. Over and over, until she is no longer there, will no longer awaken, permitting him to believe that it may just last forever.