Oslo. Winter comes early and doesn’t leave until you force it. It was colder than her heart but just as majestic, and that itself was like something you’d read about in a Penguin Classic. It was there I’d first met her long ago. She’d just lost someone, crying on a park bench long after the sun had set, but there was a certain bravery in her demeanor. She crossed my mind somehow and never left it. I think that’s what others refer to as…feelings. 

Toronto. Years later under a dimly lit streetlight she decided it was time to go back. I understood. She was tired of the feigned delicacies people aspire to, tired of our fat, crack-addicted mayor for not taking responsibility for his actions. She’d simply had enough. I gazed into her eyes and felt her pain, like I'd left her in some vicious British rain as if there were no one here for her, as if she were all alone with no more hope left in that perfect body of hers. And all the feelings she’d hidden in her valiant soul coupled with the things I couldn't feel oozed through the gilded masks we'd both cultivated in that moonless December night we let the snow course through the air. But none of it was enough, she closed her eyes and I watched her...slip away, and just like that she moved back. I never blame her; home has a particular equity. She thought she was nothing without her mask, nothing without the superficial things I could've provided her. That's what made it worse; I could've given her those things but I didn’t. I burned my tomorrows and traded my dreams for nightmares because those around us were too dumb to understand reality and opted for illusionary abstracts.

Helsinki. Here I was now, chasing an ideal around the world doing the same stupid things I always did, the only difference now was I couldn’t speak the language. I knew she could’ve blended my heart in with her morning smoothie anytime she wanted but I also knew how she thought. Even more than her desperate yearning for wanting to stand out, she’s always had one fatal weakness. Deep down, she was a good person, and deep down, I wasn’t. I looked through the mist, the moving fog and behind it, was the still moon staring back at me, cringing with the pain I knew it felt, and the sure sound of raindrops landing on dead leaves sunk my heart in line with my boots.

Bergen. Wet leaves squished under those same boots and I only heard the sound when there was a break in the Symphony of Sorrow playing through my headphones. Suddenly, something shuffled out of sight, intensified the air and…growled. The lone wolf. I knew how he felt. A creature that recognizes the futility of being solitary. Abandoning his pack means his odds for survival go down; he is one instead of two, even if he’s no longer putting up with their crap or listening to their exaggerated fables about how awesome they are. But the choice, the decision to be a lone wolf is perhaps more rational than we’d care to admit. In our landfill, lies burn through the grapevine; he’s this; he’s that; he’s bold; he’s cold…it’s those who withdraw that can then view things from an apathetical but necessary disconnection, to see things as they are rather than what they're meant to be. The single grass pane lit up by the moonlight rather than a wild forest imploding from excess. 

It didn’t matter where she was or what she was doing or even…who she was with. As the darkness of the planet consumed me bit by bit, I smiled rather than cried. At least this way I'd die in peace, finally. 

Vincent Van Gogh.   Melancholy  . 1883.

Vincent Van Gogh. Melancholy. 1883.