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Oh, brother!

“Well, best of luck! Say hi to them, and thank you for the company!”

“Oh, thank you, and send them my regards!”

“All right, I will. Goodbye!”


The white door is closed, and, as the footsteps gradually lose themselves in the outside world, I am left alone. The beautiful, sincere smile that has been my protector during the day is struggling for existence on my face. Breathing in, hmm, and breathing out, huuum. It is a dead smile; it lost its honesty and beauty, and it so desperately tries to convey the feeling that’s missing from the heart: happiness. I look into the mirror. The feelings of the day are beginning to fade away. Today, my mind was entertained by a friend, who made me smile and laugh. We talked, and I was joyful. But he left, and now I am starting to return to where I was. The smile is still there: in its beauty, it shows my upper teeth, and makes my eyes look gorgeous, as the countenance of joy hangs on my face. Time slowly passes and the smile begins to listen to the heart: it’s over. The corners of the mouth are the first to go. What was once a broad and wonderful smile is now its old, withered form. As it dies away, my face changes, and my eyes are suddenly different: not joyous, but melancholy. The feelings of the day have almost extinguished themselves. Joy, merriment, excitement, a childlike ease of mind, laughter, and contentment are slowly evaporating through the walls. A moment passes, and they are gone. The mirror and I face each other. How I have changed! My smile is buried in the past, and the eyes have lost their brilliance; everything is so dull, and my head is tilted to the side, and my arms hang lifelessly from the shoulders. I feel sorry for the young man in the mirror. Silence has become king. Some sounds from the street, I don’t know what they are, try to break into the king’s fortress. In vain. It holds dominion over my world. The young man in the mirror is still. He takes a deep breath, and the release of air fortifies his melancholy countenance. His head droops and he is seen no more. I am alone.

Today, I was looking at her, saying nothing, as I had done many times before. I didn’t want her to notice that I was looking at her, though. As soon I noticed the slightest possibility of her returning the gaze, I averted my eyes towards something else. I wondered if she looked at me. I tried to look confident, and stared in front of myself; my face was stern, and I wanted that everyone should think that I minded my own business and that I was not interested in anyone present. I wondered if she looked at my stern expression. I tried to be dignified. I didn’t care if others thought I was dignified, I cared only for her. I had promised myself that I wouldn’t show emotion. In the whirlwind of disappointment, I had decided to withdraw from the world; from her world. I had built a wall of stern countenances, lowered eyebrows, confused looks, short speeches, long stares, and solitude. I had wanted to protect myself from the northern shores in winter, sounds of seagulls, snowy railways, desolated houses, white bare birches, long walks in autumn nights, injustice towards others, abrupt answers, and stony smiles, so I had built a wall of disinterest. But one look into her eyes and chaos is come again, and all the outer and inner walls around my desires get crushed and I am on the shore again; the fierce wind, the breaking of the waves, and the lighthouse on the island come alive and desire rules my spirit. I carried my dignified presence in her vicinity, and I felt her coldness, and she sneered at my awakened flame, and I found myself helpless, speechless, joyless. It was another failed attempt at breaking the clouds over that distant northern shore. The Sun is out of my reach. The awakened flame now burns in my heart hotter than ever before. The young man in the mirror, oh, what a pitiful creature! How his eyes pine for true affection, for those warm rays of sunshine that he thinks, no, that he knows the people surrounding him bathe in. Is he not a man worthy of those gorgeous rays? Has he not proven to be a sincere friend, a jolly companion, and inspiring orator? Hasn’t he got that unique smile that comforts and excites and warms? Haven’t his eyes that flame which melts deep ice? A miserable creature surely he must be. His obsession with her is deeply rooted in his heart. He first saw her a couple of years ago, and since then, he has grown accustomed to her being the deepest desire of his heart. In the beginning, he was encouraged by the looks, the smiles, and the warm expression of the eyes. She moved him like no other person has been able to do since. In her, he found his ideal. Her figure resembled the figure he had dreamt about. Every time she spoke, his heart beat faster. The smiles she bestowed upon him melted his heart, and a faint hope arouse in his heart. And the eyes…whenever he felt distant from her, one look at her eyes would diminish that coolness, and he would be wrapped in desires once again. But, days passed, and he felt unworthy of the love, and did nothing. His fear of being rejected beat his desire, and so he remained in the shadows, where he loved and pined and felt hopeless.

Photo: fialex / Pixabay

Narrow stony streets hand in hand we went long awaited joy secrecy i see our steps secrecy hair touches me time passes slowly the sky is clouded the houses gray silence people ask about me i sense joy in me silence i am happy i can’t talk silence silence silence can it be i feel something is coming i am not aware i realise people ask me questions murmur friends smiles i realise she is someone i know not her someone else she is someone i know i see her we sit on a bench smiles silence we look into each other smiles suppressed joy she is beautiful smiles i see her hair i realise i am married the burden is dropped i am not alone she loves me smiles her eyes wrinkle beautifully we sit on a bench everyone knows i realise the burden is dropped my soul is at peace joy we go hand in hand smiles friends company laughter laughter joy the eyes wrinkle beautifully the movements are graceful slow love not burning passion patient love i love her my soul is at peace she is someone i know she is not her i feel joy my parents sit beside me we connect we talk laughter we walk on the stony narrow streets silence the sky is gray her movements graceful her eyes wrinkle beautifully smiles smiles smiles

I saw her today walking with two guys and laughing sincerely. I felt stabbed and betrayed. I detested them, her laughter, the waving of her hands, their lively interaction, the friendship, and the bond. In the silent room, I am alone. A trolley is howling outside. Then silence again. I walk about the rooms and the rooms are empty. I am aware of the white walls, the white doors, the empty furniture, and the silence. I take a deep breath. I take a deep breath.

Oh brother! How could I not think of you? What opiate numbed my spirit to forget you? You, of all people! My brother, dear brother! The mound above you must be desolate this time of year. Oh, the memories: how beautiful your smile was, and how great your spirit; you were kind and gentle towards others, your hope was a thing to be nourished, your love was sincere, your hatred short, your shadow majestic! I see the little boy, hugging his baby brother and caressing his head. I see the little boy, hugging his elder brother and laughing with a melodious laugh. I see them sitting together and smiling at each other. Now they are celebrating his birthday, and see how they stand side by side! His pale lips I remember, as they laid him down. It was him, certainly, but it wasn’t him. Not my brother. It was an empty shell, life sucked out of it. To touch it? I would touch the shell, not him. I watch how my dad and grandpa sit beside it and caress its head. Their blue eyes are wet with tears. They endure in silence. My dad caresses his hair, his beautiful blonde hair. His eyes are bent towards him, and his countenance is gentle. His boy lies in front of him. My grandpa watches over him; he is like a stern tower gone soft by the storm. His boy lies in front of him. I watch my mum kissing his cold pale forehead, and she can’t suppress her tears. A group of people pay their respects to him, and he is so peaceful, so dignified; in white wrappers, only his head is visible. I cannot touch him, for I know his soul is elsewhere. I watch his covered body while the long caravan follows us. I almost can’t suppress tears. His body wrapped in white and green garments. His lifeless body! He is dead! The long caravan follows us, and my dad and grandpa sit beside him. Their eyes sometimes look towards him, but their gazes are directed elsewhere, their gazes are vague. We are at the graveyard and men are gathered around the grave. A speech is given. We all die; nothing lasts, better to die in full bloom than when we are withered and lifeless. Laying it down, careful with that, say the others. Shovels appear in the air, burying it. Come, throw something. I approach, throw dust onto him and then leave. Shovels work earnestly. It is almost done, a piece of earth follows a piece of earth and a mound appears. He is beneath the ground. My brother, beneath the ground, and I buried him! Tears start to flow down my face; someone is talking to me, but I don’t care, I want to be alone, and cry, cry, cry. I see the boy holding a wooden gun in his right hand while his left is on his heart. I remember. The summer he was alone with grandpa. Grandpa asked all of us children to join him on the mountainside, to keep him company in the wilderness. No one wanted to go, except him - the boy carrying the gun in his right and touching the heart with his left. The sincere, honest, beautiful boy! The best of all of us! And I deserted him! Then, and many times more. I wasn’t there when he needed a hand in the water. While his lungs were filling with water and his blue eyes starting to lose their glow, I was far away. I was laughing while he was desperately trying to endure in the depths of the darkness, alone.

I find myself looking at the photo album and crying. Tears are hot in my eyes and I can’t stop them. I weep, and weep, and weep and then I clutch my head and look at the photo again and my heart bleeds harder and I can’t bear it anymore! The loneliness, the silence, the smiles that die away, the pangs of despised love, the unfulfilled hope, the sweet false dreams of vague happiness, the despair, the futile yearning, the bleak future, the false promises, the meaningless advice, this desolate life! Oh, how it seems rich to die now! Love withers away into Sorrow. In the end, we lie in graveyards until no one is left to walk along them.

The crags on the shore are beaten by the thundering waves.

The gulls’ sharp cries are heard.

It is a cloudy day and the Sun is invisible.

The lighthouse stands alone.

Nothing disturbs this melancholy scene.


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