tenmilesfromtown

Where I write and you read

Things I’d like to tell a/my child.

  1. Stop speaking in superlatives. Life is a spectrum and life might be tough sometimes, but there is always someone who has it worse than you – no, you don’t always meet scum men, and no, you’re not the ugliest person in the room. You are not untouchable and maybe you’re the exact opposite of that – you let the smallest of things get to you and the emotions that cross your face can be seen from a mile away. But that doesn’t make you weak.
  2. Please know, that being a cold person does not make you strong. Pushing people who care away will not protect you from rejection and failure. And it will not make the lonely nights any better. If one day your single bed feels too empty for one, know that that is an emptiness that no one can fill. But I will be there, I promise, with waffles and rain boots. I will wait through the storm with you, and even if the tears don’t seem to end, I promise you, the heartbreak will.
  3. I hope that one day you will realise that writing the lyrics of love songs on your wrists is not the same thing as wearing your heart on your sleeve,  and no matter how much you scribble his name in that diary of a mind of yours, he will not love you, if you’re not the one for him. But someone will, someday.
  4. Don’t, just don’t, turn back to look at the boy who gave up on you, and don’t spare a second thought for the leftover pieces of heart someone threw out. They are not yours to keep and will never make you whole. And that boy, who gave you a second look? He’s not worth changing yourself for. You may think he’s the one in that few but he will never appreciate how you changed.

I hope life treats you kindly, with forgiveness and generosity, and that you find peace amidst the buzz of commuters that pass, that you find comfort in the throng of people that surround. And forgive me if my mind felt before my heart spoke, if irritation came to me as swiftly as instinct, or if anger was one foot faster out of the door than empathy.

Please, find love in your heart to forgive me, and to not let my mistakes shape your future. Never let your mum’s love for black and white turn you away from a world of colour. Patterns, rainbows, non-primary colours; those were the things your mum never dared to discover. Not that she had the talent to – every pattern she swirled turned as dull as the life she lived.

There will be days that you feel like you have nothing left to give, like you are as worthless as a single note in a time of loose monetary policy, or as left out as a 6th man to a 5 stack. Realise, that problems are only as bad as you let them be.

I hope that one day, you’ll pave the way for love in this world, and as much as destruction and pain follow some people in this world, I hope you’ll heal and build.

And I have not a single clue who your father is. But i sure hope he is a good man.

A/N: This has been on my mind for sometime (ever since #dearme videos started on youtube earlier this year) so I thought I’d finally write it all down. It’s still in random bits and blobs but please be kind, I’m a bit rusty.

+ n.b. There are so many things I’d like to add to this list. Maybe in a while after I get my thoughts together.

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What I’ll ask of you

Please don’t ask me to tell you my stories. If you ask what’s wrong, I might start to think you actually care.

Please don’t tell me you’re not like the others, because it’s the charmers like you who fostered my mistrust towards sweet-talkers.

Please don’t tell me to confide in you, because you’re not emotionally strong enough to bear the weight of my thoughts. If I suffocate in these thoughts, you’d drown in them too.

Please don’t tell me that there shouldn’t be secrets between me and you. Because between us, there’s distance, confusion, misunderstanding. Love. Secrets are the least you should worry about.

And just please please don’t tell me you love me, or even give me an inkling of hope that you ever will, because all I’ll do is depend on you for the love I cannot show myself. And if it turns out it’s anything but, the hopes that I hold on to to keep me breathing and the dreams that drive me to keep living, will cease to exist. Just like what we had between us, already has.

The things I want to be

I want to be a unicorn. Because even though nobody has seen one of my kind, it doesn’t mean I don’t exist. Because like self worth, if you believe hard enough, you might find that i exist, and that you are more adequate than anybody else can tell you.

I want to be the barbie doll that has a beautiful smile plastered on no matter what. Because people like it when you’re happy and sometimes it’s just so hard to smile when you feel the vitality seeping out from beneath you.

I want to be a teak bench. Someone’s teak bench. One which they don’t hesitate to lie and rely on whenever they are down. One which never wears down when their tears pour like torrential rain nor gives way when emotional baggage is unloaded upon me.

I want to be a lighthouse. One that stands tall even when waves of sadness crash upon me or biting gushes of words blow upon me. I wish to be the one that guides people through darkness towards shore –  a place of comfort and warmth. I want to be a signal of hope to those searching in the darkness, through the tumulous storms. 

Maybe all I want to be, is to be comfortable in my own skin. Not wanting. Just believing that I can be the best of what I will be.

Letting Go

That day I let go of you. Sounds out of the blue but because I can’t do in betweens nor stick to stipulated boundaries, we had to go to extremes. And part of me thought you’d have fought. Fought to keep talking to me, or just hang on to me. But you didn’t and I’m wondering why it bothers me so much. Maybe some part of me hoped you would. Maybe I wore you down, too thin, too tired, too afraid to try. But the thousand excuses that I have made for you don’t erase the fact that you didn’t try at all. All this time. That day, my heart felt like it had gone through a shredder. I felt pain, hurt, anger and bitterness. And a lot of pain. I wonder what about you.

It’s 4am and I am confused as fuck. My heart is filled to the brim with regrets, fingers aching with urge to just say hi but rationality reveals itself at intervals from the hidden depths of my brain, reminding me that I had my chance and I no longer have a choice. Back then, rationality presented itself in the form of friends, highlighting to me the fact that I’ve been incredibly selfish and it tore open my eyes, forcing me to see that you were in pain. During the time leading up to that day, I felt things change. Perhaps it was reality telling me I really was going to lose you, urging me to do whatever it took to hold on to you. Perhaps it was the night before that made me realise that perhaps it wouldn’t be such a mistake. But I’ve been holding on to you for so long such that that day, I was no longer was in the position to.

Today, all I have left for you is “be happy”, “stay healthy” and “I’m sorry”. And right now, all I can say is, I’ll be here when you’re ready to have me back in your life again, and that if you ever need anyone at all, I’ll be here for you. Whenever, whatever, no matter.

In between dusk and dawn

For us, the night felt like a graffiti artist, creeping up when we were hard at work or having our weekly movie marathons, painting circles around our eyes.

It felt like a thief secretly taking away seconds, for the hours seemed to pass too quickly when we’re asleep or staying up way past our bedtimes to talk.

It almost seemed like the life philosophies – giving us darkness to show us that sooner or later, light will ensue, and surrounding us in cold, so that we better appreciate warmth.
If the night were a piece of land above us all, the moon would be the king, the stars his jesters, performing on the stage, their true value only seen by those whom they shine upon.

It was also my disguise. I always said my goodbyes in the dark, for only then, you wouldn’t have seen how my irises had been dyed red and how the floodgates for my tear ducts had fallen. You’d remember me by my voice, and not the puffiness of my cheeks. You’d remember me by the sound of my boots hitting the marble hospital floors, obnoxiously ringing through the sterile, empty hospital air, fading with each steady but unwilling step I took away from you, not the thickness of the legs that walk them. You’d remember the warmth of our last embrace, not the coldness with which we sometimes treated each other. And you’d remember the scent of my perfume and not the retching aftertaste our bitter words left in our mouths.

You wouldn’t be bogged down by the look of longing and regret that lingered in my eyes, nor the gaze that focused on the what-ifs and not what we have become. I wouldn’t be tempted by your sheer physical presence to reach out and touch you because you had been distant for so long. We both knew if I did, I couldn’t let you go in time.

But the night was a thief. It stole your breath away and replaced your beating heart with a static one. It stole my memories of you whilst I was asleep and left only one – a single steady beep. Society didn’t notice. But I did. And while society hasn’t missed you, I’ve loved you.

I wish the night was your land. I hope you’ve gone there to become king. Because you always deserved to be looked up to, and the stars deserve someone as kind and respectful as you to rule over them. They deserve the you who always saw the beauty in things, who was always willing to fade into the background so that others would be in the spotlight, and who always lent your shine to bring out someone else’s spark.
The night became your disguise instead. The same cloak that I used, but instead of covering yourself, you covered my eyes. And by the time it fell, you were gone.

No that day, the night became your accomplice. It helped adhere to your philosophy. To leave others before they ever left you. To leave when no one else noticed because you were too cowardly to face the pain a proper farewell injected into our veins. To leave without actually leaving because your sheer existence left an imprint so strong in my mind that i have never forgotten you.
But it also became a barrier. You didn’t get to hear that I’d sooner break my wrists than cut off ties with you. You didn’t get to see that your heart was already drawn in permanent ink onto mine. And you didn’t get to feel my heart that I had placed in your hands.

The night is now my artist. It paints beautiful memories of us in my mind and screens beautiful dreams of scenes that could have been our realities. Now, when I lay my head on the mattress, I close my eyes, and the night transforms my heartbeat into yours. The very one that it took away from me.

Even then, the night was our thing. It was our light because it stripped us down to our bare souls and let us see each other without our exteriors. Pain was heard through voice, without the doubt that was cast by our smiling expressions. Love was felt through touch, the chemistry that flowed through our intertwined fingers, and how compatible we felt together, not how we looked together. By not seeing each other, we felt each other in the rawest forms.

Contemplation

People will tell us no, and talk of a predictable inevitable end. They will tell us to wait, that the love is not the right kind and the decision isn’t wise. That the home will be built upon unstable feelings, hollow gazes and empty promises. That sometimes rash is not just being hasty in making a decision or an outbreak on the skin but the start of a very disastrous end.

They will describe animatedly these lofty notions about how it’s supposed to feel and how the future is supposed to seem, like love is an instantaneous makeover that makes you glow or a pair of glasses that brighten up the tunnel. And from the look in your eyes, they know you don’t feel that way. From the emotions in your voice, they know your heart doesn’t quiver when he approaches. From the lethargy in your movement, they know you don’t anticipate your next encounter. From the wider smile and brighter laughter you share around someone else, they know your heart’s too filled for another, even if you don’t know it yet. And they question why either of you even think about opening your hearts to one another when you know it’s going to be thrown away someday.

But maybe sometimes, it’s worth it to hold on to what you have, and venture. To take a chance even if you know it may not last forever.

Sometimes it is worth it to watch the movie or read the book even though someone’s already spoiled the plot.

Because even if we will never be that 6am old couple strolling in the park, we would have been the 2am duo talking in the dark, or the 12pm item that overslept and woke up in each other’s arms.

Because even if our social circles, future plans and career prospects do not intersect, we know we’ve ran alongside each other once as parallels.

Because the person we are in the moment needs love too, whether that is the type of love that lasts forever or a love that only manages to take your heart here and now.

Because even if we do not have forever, it does not mean this is the end, neither does it mean we loved any less. And to disregard a love that does not last forever is to disregard a love that could still be powerful and life-changing in its own right.

Simply because,

if we are too caught up chasing other people’s stories and listening to all the other tales, we forget to spin our own web of unforgettable years.

A/N: I don’t fully advocate this viewpoint but well, it’s something I thought of when I heard a chinese song earlier today

Parallel Lines

You are like the water that slips through my fingers, running past, never staying for longer than that moment, and on some days, I wonder if we ever crossed paths.

You are like the sun that turns the black strands of my hair brown. Fleeting, unnoticed and irksome but eventually appreciated, and now, just as impossible to reach.

You are like the middle button on my shirt. A hassle to do up, but leaves a gaping hole when gone. There were days when I skipped past you in a hurry, or tugged at you a bit harder than i’d like, and I’m sorry. So so sorry for the neglect and abuse for now, you’re impossible to find.

You were the time never spent, adventures never embarked and risks never taken. But maybe some paths were never meant to be walked on, some trails never meant to be left and some dreams never meant to be shared.

But all this time, all I have been to you is the game you had to play before getting to the ultimate prize. Underestimated when played, forgotten when won and worthless when you get to the trophy.

The wait

I can wait, for that whirlwind romance that sweeps you into its fury.

I can wait, for those foodie adventures we only ever think about.

I can wait, for the sweet nothings whispered, back hugs stolen, long walks taken.

But i am no longer waiting for your voice to reach me. No longer waiting for those words of appreciation we all know you don’t even think. No longer waiting for your looming shadow crouched above me. No longer waiting for the reflection of you approaching to increase in size. No longer wanting you here with me.

And with everyday that passes, with each gaze that i avoid and each glance i no longer sneak, everything i just wrote becomes just that bit much more true.

The unspoken

When I look at you without speaking, it’s not because I have nothing to say. With every faint smile that flashes across my face, every subtle glance at your fallen gaze, every twitch and slight parting of my lips, a million things cross my mind. A hundred openings, a thousand happenings and endless, endless emotions. And I look at you with emotion brimming my eyes, willing you to read my expression and hear my thoughts.The fire in my throat intensifies with every word left unsaid, and as I muster all my courage and will myself to make sound, all that comes out is silence. And you leave yet again.

I never tell you what’s bothering me. Not anymore. You make it impossible to.

The funny thing is, I’ve always known exactly what I want to say;

With one read, you have become my favourite book

When I flipped through your pages, did you remember her fingers on your surface….A crease pointing backwards to the place you saved for her. And when she broke your heart, did she also crack your spine so you’d always fall in her direction?

And I admit, I never left you open on my nightstand but I guess you were already stolen in someone else’s secrets and affection.
There’s a reason I stopped using notebooks and pencils at least the backspace is relatively painless…
Because I will always believe in the portrait of disaster, even if it never begins.
So when did I become so old that I scrawled my hearts in marker hoping that they’d bleed through your body and become permanent?
You said, you would always be her diary so I guess that just makes me an entry on an off date.

You see, I don’t care how many libraries there are in the world, I still look for you, but I can’t find the right synonym for beautiful. When other men touch me, I am searching for your plot lines – the first thing I was willing to bleed for in so long. But I’m not blaming you. I blame me.

Cause if my heart is poetry then I only want you to remember the lies about love lingering like her scent lingering on my T-shirt that night you asked me over…I’m not trying to be more than your friend, nor am I postponing an inevitable end. After all they say, if you truly love someone, let them go.

So please know, I’m willing to paper-crane all your pages until they propel to the sky like the stars we’ll finally discover when we turn out the lights.I can never be the one who sleeps next to you at night but please, let me be the love letter tucked beneath your pillow case to remind you that you’ll always be in my dreams;