That love is selfless and grief selfish, may be incongruous notions of illusion we perpetuate through rampant phases of emotion that strike us at very different times in our lives. What I want to be and who I am, are defined and separated by a chasm of uncertainly, self-delusion and reckless hope that make my aspiration noble but my reality shamefully fickle and lacking. I think perhaps I am not alone in this.
On grief, I have no doubt of the selfishness of that emotion. It is felt deepest when aligned to the loss of love of course and I have been caressed by its touch, felt the nettle sting on my cheek through fallen tears and try not to consider the next time it will visit itself upon me. True grief, is selfish. At its core is the rendering of one’s heart and the world stops for you alone. That it still revolves and how others can carry on and not notice that everything has stopped for you, is perhaps most noticeable whenever grief strikes for the first time.
That love is selfless is for many a lie perpetuated by the good and seemingly unholy, perfect people of this world, who I doubt truly exist except through their own press and propaganda. True love should be selfless. It is an aspiration but only on rare occasions a truism. Finding such a love is it might seem, rarer than our romantic souls can bear and our books and music is filled with words to touch and crease our hearts. That we can cry at a lyric from a song or shed a tear while reading a book, is a demonstration of how important the notion off true love is to us as a society.
My heart will truly break someday I know for sure. When I fell in love for the last time, it was not what I had intended, it was not what I was looking for. We have both been blessed by the nature of our love. When that time comes for one of us to mourn the passing of the other, I doubt there will be words to describe the grief cave that we will enter. I can of course only truly speak for myself, but there will be selfishness and I know this because I have lost so many people I love already that I understand the process. What I sadly understand more because of those losses, is that there are some loves I will not ever truly carry safely forward.
In my writing world, I always explore love, real, true love, loss and grief. Every book I write is about those things even when they are not fully up front and in your face. Darkly Wood for all its terror is my love story book and the theme of love and loss is explored throughout. This is developed in book II which will be published soon. Larry Flynn is of course a violent, vengeance filled book, but it is vengeance born out of love and loss so deep, that poor old Larry has spent a lifetime grieving. Even my serial killer story Bad Blood deals with love, loss and grief through a variety of characters but of course it is in my Little Big Boy that I truly explore the sense of what it means to lose someone you love with an unexplainable depth.
I broke my central character’s heart in a very particular way to touch the reader and I used every sinew of my own heart, every hidden scraping of cast off grief to find the soul in my Little Big Boy. Perhaps that is why it is so often mistaken for an autobiography.
The great fortune and misfortune of my life, has been that I have a love in my life that cannot be less than the wonder of stars for me. It is beyond my comprehension that fate could coddle me in such a way that I feel favoured. Right from the beginning I let her see my ugly parts and with every touch and soft word she made them shine. I was renewed in her careful beauty.
I have no idea what the future brings but I know that now my days are rich because of her. Such is my fortune and I am rich beyond need in this respect, but why then do I also say misfortune?
That love goes on forever seems wholly appropriate for me in the circumstances. That the tick of my tock, the click of her clack should someday fail to be heard is inevitable and I know somewhere, someday to come, the same fates that grace me now, have set the trap of mortality and a great parting awaits.
Until then, I will cushion my fall with the touch of hands that are truly felt beyond the fingertips, with the soft press of lip on lip to buoy my soul, the crinkle at the corner of her mouth that tells me I made her smile and the way she makes me feel every…single…day…
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Max Power’s books include, Darkly Wood, Larry Flynn Bad Blood and Little Big Boy
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