I sometimes feel like fresh snow watching the rain fall. Happiness like fresh snow can be a thing of such incredible purity and beauty, but even a soft fall of rain can decimate it and as though it were never there, it is gone. And so I must wait for snow again or perhaps the spring carpet of colour will warm my heart again.
My melancholia is my companion and has been throughout my life. That I am happy is beyond doubt, but my burdensome friend never strays far from my side. The absolute battle to keep him at bay is far more titanic than even those who truly know me could ever understand. Perhaps that is why I pour so much of him into my books. I want to exorcise my companion and relieve some of that weight. Yesterday I heard such sad news that it overwhelmed me and I took my sadness for a walk.
I walked with him into danger last night. I took him with me to a place I knew was unsafe and exchanged him for anger, hoping, desirous in truth of confrontation with some wayward creature of the darkness. I thought perhaps my new friend anger could be my escape from sadness but nothing happened. I met no unworthy foe. I was foolish and as I walked, anger got bored. We were never good bedfellows anyway and I realised that I had no use for such a stupid friend. In truth I knew it when he jostled his way into my thoughts.
But there waiting for me, the moment anger had gone, was melancholy once again. He was sitting on a stone pillar kicking his legs as I approached, head bowed, a little shadow boy who immediately fell into step with me. My old companion took my hand a led me down the darkest of paths until I finally found sleep. I awoke this morning at precisely 5.35, my very own witching hour.
That time has some as yet to be revealed, hidden meaning for me. It was at that time, that my other dark shadow man first made himself known to me when I lay in my hospital bed and I knew he was a demon of portent. I looked for him in the near total darkness of my room this morning. He was not peering in my window nor slithering across the ceiling as he had done before. Perhaps he wasn’t there, my shadow man, my Mr. Squiggles. I knew that naming him had not made him go away after all.
I looked to my right and there he was, right there by my bedside. He moved a little but only enough to chill my soul and it was my soul that he stared into. He has no eyes my Mr. Squiggles but he can see into me and I could feel the ice of his stare. There was malice in his presence I knew that much and I closed my eyes hoping he might leave me. He held his ground, searching my soul until he found what he was looking for and I felt his piercing, long-nailed fingertip, clawing at the places I needed to preserve from the likes of such a creature.
I opened my eyes and stared at him and his featureless shadowy face smiled before he scuttled away beneath the curtains. I watched his shape wiggle beneath them and then he was gone. Such was my morning and such is my day now.
I have to wait for my snow to fall. I know it will come but I need it soon. Until then I must wear my mask and imagine I am someone other than the man who holds the hand of sadness. There is a new year on the way and I know it will be as this one but that is ok, for I am such a contradiction in my happy place poking back the sorrow that, I know tomorrow will come just as surely as today.
I have tales to tell and tell them I will. In their telling will come respite, for my wounded bleeding soul will stain the pages and bring relief. Sometimes I am so aware of the sense of me, my own essence and sometimes I am a little boy lost. I am reminded of my favourite opening from Shakespeare’s The Merchant of Venice.
In sooth, I know not why I am so sad:
It wearies me; you say it wearies you;
But how I caught it, found it, or came by it,
What stuff ‘tis made of, whereof it is born,
I am to learn;
And such a want-wit sadness makes of me,
That I have much ado to know myself
Let the festivities begin for I desire the light. Draw back the curtains, show me the sun, give me mirth and merriment and I will be the heartbeat of the celebration. So many people let their sad companion lead them and darken the path ahead. It is not my way. I see his hand and take it but then I let him go. He still follows me, watching from the shadows, waiting for an opportunity to take my hand and lead me astray but that will always be so for I think he joins me for a reason. Maybe he likes my company who knows.
I don’t make new year resolutions for they symbolise regret and desire for me. Some say, regret nothing; I’m not sure if that’s good advice. As for desire, it must be your servant not your master. That being said I have my goals but they are not restricted by a calendar. Tomorrow is my new day, my next step in life. I will awaken to the light and find the good where I can. I will give of my heart and love as love is all important. I will hide my darkness and keep it for my writing and I will share my joy as only I can.
What will make the New Year special? I will make someone smile and I will smile too. I will have my heart warmed and I will warm hearts in return. I will give and try not to take so much and I will be the best I can be. No resolutions no regrets only desires that I master, things I will do. Happy New Year and if you still haven’t understood where my bleeding soul ends up, make a resolution to read one of my books in 2017…
Max Power’s books include, Darkly Wood, Larry Flynn Bad Blood and Little Big Boy
You can find more details about Max Power’s books here : –
Universal book links
Or why not read free previews here;
Little Big Boy https://read.amazon.com/kp/embed?asin=B00WRP0J8E&preview