Tell me your story!

62243941_2529420197088606_4204089743681519616_n-The night sky is more generous than ever, cradling our dreamy eyes in milliards of stars…

-But you can’t see them, silly girl, ’cause you’re only starring at me! Not that I’m complaining…

-I do see them, as reflections in your eyes…

-Tell me one of your stories!

-Nooo…you know that all my stories are sad!

-It doesn’t matter…your voice can take me there, and I need to escape…

-Okay…Once upon a time…

-Yesss…

-There was a little boy, very sweet and gentle, with big eyes and a good, carrying, generous heart.

A good little boy…

-One day, he was walking down the dark forest, and he got lost…So he ran and searched for his way out, but there was none…and he felt scared and hopeless…and so alone…

-Oh…

-Looking down, he saw a little light…golden, flickering light, so he followed it. It leaded him to his way out of the forest. Only that the light wasn’t just a light…it was a little bird.

-Right. A bird.

-With golden wings and sparks in her eyes…wounded, unable to fly, only to crawl. He took her home and build a cage for her. A golden cage.

-Still a cage, no matter if it’s golden.

-A place for her to heal and to be safe. And, with his love, she got better…

-That’s nice…

-Her wings grew stronger, so she wanted to fly. But, no matter how much she pleaded with the little boy, he wouldn’t let her…

-Selfish and possessive!

-He was afraid for her, that she might get hurt. He was afraid for him, that he might lose her. So she stopped pleading and stopped spreading her wings. But she couldn’t stop dreaming! And the dark forest’s whispers were so alluring and so seductive…

-And?!

-Finally, she got too weak to fly, so he thought it’s safe to leave the door of her cage wide open. So was the window…

-Nooo! She jumped and smashed her body on the floor!

-She flew! Maybe her dreams gave her strength…or maybe it was the dark forest, who knows? Maybe some charmed wind took her and held her…but she flew! She found her way back into the forest!

-Wonderful…

-The boy…what do you think he did?

-He learned to respect other people’s choices?

-He grew up as an angry, resentful, bitter soul…Searching for nothing but revenge! I’m sorry…

-Heyyy…please don’t cry! Why are you crying? Oh…you are that bird! That bird was you all along and I didn’t noticed!

-No, I’m not that bird…

I am the girl he used to replace his lost golden bird…

 

 

Photo from my personal collection.

When love was nothing but a battle cry

3524484971_a524f481d3_bDo you like this fragrance of smoke in my hair?

I wrote you a thousand letters and, with each one of them, I loved you a little more. Sweet lines with bitter meanings and big words with senseless metaphors, yet, you forgave my lack of judgement in each and every promise I made. You tried to decipher the empty spaces, unaware that the key is buried deep inside me.

Do you like when my eyes are changing from green to fire-bright carnelian?

I wrote you a million poems and, when rhymes faded away, I used my tears to paint a proper ending to my endless questions. You were the hero and I was your muse, you saved the world and I was saving you, you got the glory, I got insecure. I failed again, this pain has no rhythm, it’s blank and white and cruel!

Do you like the warmth of my hands on your body?

I wrote you a love song, inspired by the way you’re undressing my shivering soul, leaving me naked and ashamed in the spotlight. You listened and asked for more of this passionate, self-destructive desire. You loved the harmony in my whispers and you wanted me to teach you how to play. Guitar, violin, piano, my heart…you played them beautifully. Then, bored and lonely, you deleted my song from your playlist.

Do you like my slow, sensual dances under the moonlight?

I wrote you a made-up story about the boy on the moon who saved the sad girl from falling. I sent you a page every day, so that you could add some more drama, some more mystery. Some more love…I saw you laughing, changing the lines, breaking and cutting the thin wire I was hanging on to. You asked for a realistic script.

My love, reality lies broken under my burnt feet and no one wins. Your love was nothing but a battle cry in this war of hearts, my hero. Don’t cry, my boy-from-the-moon, no one will break me anymore…

I wrote a thousand letters and I set them on fire.

This was supposed to heal me, but, instead, I fell in love with the ashes…

 

 

The title was inspired by Tom Neuwirth’s song “Heroes” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=puRPBdZPfi8

I found the image at: http://www.flickriver.com/photos/nuvan_buet/3524484971/

 

 

Where love is stronger than fire…

61Rvvs8lliL._UY395_

-I’m sorry for being late…

-Well, we’re like…twenty years late. So what’s another hour? You’re beautiful.

-Thank you, uhmm…you’re beautiful too.

She was a beautiful girl, even if she has never admit it to herself, but, twenty years ago, we were both struggling to accept ourselves for who we are. We were there, for each other, in our daily attempts to build our identities as teenagers in a post-communist society. We were mirrors to each other when the real mirrors seemed broken.

-You always said that my mirror is broken…

-You used to talk about yourself in such low terms, it was heartbreaking to even listen…

-I never understood what’s about me that you like so much!

-No…you understood right, but you never accepted.

-I’m sorry for…I’m just so very sorry…

-Don’t be, this is how it was meant to be. Losing you was terrible, but it seemed the only way…

I want to hug her, but I know I shouldn’t. This woman standing in front of me knows pain, sadness, rejection more than anyone…And it was me, the one who caused…

-What are you thinking about?

-We need to talk about that afternoon…I need to…

-I know, it’s okay. Let’s talk about it…

She takes my hand, just like she did twenty years ago, in that sunny afternoon…the day that created this gap in time. The day when we lost our friendship.

(1998) twenty years ago:

She takes my hand and, somehow it feels different. I confessed her, a few days ago about my struggle with anorexia, about my nightmares, my fears. I felt she changed and I was afraid that the burden was too heavy. And now, when she told me that she has something to tell me, I just…

-About the other day, I didn’t meant to sound so crazy…I’m sorry, I was only…you must think I’m a crazy monster or something…

-Stop, please, stop saying such horrible things. I love you.

-Oh, I love you too! You’re my best friend, the sister I never had…

And I open my arms to hug her, but she continue to look into my eyes with an intensity I never saw before. She comes closer and I feel…uncomfortable, strange…

-It’s a different kind of love. I look at you, you’re perfect…in every way…and you’re my soulmate. I am in love with you.

Her hands are cupping my face and I’m lost in this nightmare. She leans over and now she’s so close that her lips are almost touching mine. And all I want is to run away…

-NO! This is wrong! You cannot feel this! You’re just confused…I’m…I can’t believe…just don’t touch me like this…

She’s so hurt and I’ve done this. I rejected her. She’s crying…

-I thought…that maybe you…would…feel…the same…Please don’t tell anyone, okay?

She ran. I ran too. And we kept running for twenty years…

now:

I wonder if she was ever able to forgive me. Maybe not. But losing my best friend was enough punishment for being so closed minded, so ignorant and judgemental.

-You’re thinking bad things about yourself again, I know it…every time you do it, you have this shadow in your eyes.

-I deserve the bad things…

-No, you don’t. We were 18, we were kids. You grew up believing that, any moment, the fire of hell will burn you alive. Sometimes I think that this fire only exists in your own mind. So, put an end to this torment.

-I can’t.

-I still love you. I don’t want another twenty years of running away. Let me be your friend, if friendship is what you feel. I’m here for you.

And I hug her, I finally hold her tight, I finally cry with her. I finally say the right words.

“I’m here for you too.

Because there’s a place where love is stronger than the fire of hell.

And that place is your heart.”

 

Will someone rescue me?

Tell me you wont save him! Look into his eyes, now look at me and tell me you don’t want to save him!

I knew this would work eventually…and it did, like so may times before. We were both eight years old, best friends, even more…Stephan was the kind of friend who would have followed me to the moon and back.

-We’re not supposed to be here, Claudia…I’ll get in trouble because of you. And it’s also dangerous…

In a way, he was right. We were not supposed to be there. In the backyard of this abandoned house where the sun never seemed to shine. It was always dark, always shadowed, and our parents were very clear…

-You know what? If you’re so afraid, just go! But I wont let him die here! Just look into his eyes…he’s begging us to help him.

The white pigeon was fighting for his life. He was caught in the thick bush and, with every struggle, he got deeper. I raised my hand, trying to reach out to him…

-No, please don’t do that! I heard there are spiders in the bushes! With venom…have you heard of the black widow? A child died after being bitten…don’t touch the bush!

Then you do it…

My tactics didn’t seem to function so I changed my tone…

Stephan…you know you’re the bravest boy I ever known…that’s why I asked you to help me. I could have called Christian…oh, maybe I should have done this…but you’re my best friend, not him…Will you, please, help me? Like a real hero, like Superman…

Reluctantly, he got closer to the bush. Another brave move and the white pigeon was in my arms. Stephan had scratches on his arms and a feeling of victory in his eyes…

-His wing is broken. I’d better take him to my grandfather, he knows how to fix broken wings…

-But…can I see him? He’s my pigeon…can I visit him…? 

-Claudia, I…

-Where were you? And my pigeon? How could you take him away and not telling me anything about him? It’s almost a week since I…since we saved him!

-He’s not…

I’m coming to see him! Where is it? In your room? Give it to me right now!

-I don’t have it anymore…He…died…my grandfather couldn’t fix his wing…and I was grounded for going with you to the abandoned house!

Big tears in my eyes…He died…my white pigeon…

Did you bury him? Can I see…the grave? 

-I did not…It’s not my fault! My grandmother made soup…she said it’s good when you have a cold…and I…

What? You…disgusting cannibal! I hate you! I hope the spiders will catch you and the black widow will eat you! You’re not my friend anymore! You’re nothing but a cannibal!

He tried to explain but I ran. I cried all evening. I heard he cried too…

-Do you remember? You called me “a cannibal” and I was trying to explain that cannibal means something else. God, how I cried that day! I was grounded the whole month, no TV, no games, only school…worse than jail! If you knew how I hated you…

-I was so sorry for the way I treated you. I wanted to apologize, I searched for you but then you left…Do you realize that this happen almost 30 years ago? Look at you, you’re so changed…with your white coat, taking care of all these sick animals…

-I know…I recognized your eyes…the same big green eyes…always a little scared, always a little defiant…

-That’s me, the rebel! So, am I forgiven for calling you a cannibal? Friends…again? Hey, Superman…remember?

He laughed and, for a moment, beyond the serious and professional aspect, beyond the gray hair and the eyeglasses I saw the little boy…

-Well, it’s a long time since anyone called me…Superman… so I guess it’s a good start.

 

A “happy ever-after” mask

6 years ago…

I can feel his hesitation, even if his face remains in the darkness. From all the confessions he heard today, mine took him by surprise. Because no matter what I’d do, someone will get hurt.

She should have been the sister I never had. Our children were supposed to play together and we imagined ourselves sharing beautiful memories over the years. When have I started to feel so suffocated? When was the first time I avoided her? What was her first mean word? How did we build this wall so thick, so unbreakable?

People change, not always in better. Sometimes the little voices in our minds, telling us that we’re not good enough, just grow into monsters, destroying lives and friendships. And maybe my best friend was, all this time, just a hurt child, searching for confirmations. And me…

-Does this relationship helps you grow spiritually? Or emotionally? Do you feel a better person around this friend of yours?

– …

-Then you have your answer…

today

He keeps talking even if I stopped listening long time ago. I saw in him my best friend, he saw in me a mirror. Reflecting his mask of perfection.

-…so, I told her that there’s no way we’re going together if she doesn’t change her attitude. And, guess what? It really worked! So, next time, I wont even try to play nicely! Want to see what she said? I’m sending you her messages…

-No, don’t.

-Why???

-Because there’s something I’ve been meaning to tell you…

-What? Wait, someone’s calling me!

-It wont take long. I’m going to ask you something. About these messages, I need you to stop contacting me.

-Really? Well, as you wish. But why?

-Because we’re not really communicating. You talk and I listen, I don’t feel like you’d even care about…

-LOL

-Why are you laughing?

-Because you, women…Look, I’ll tell you what’s happening. You like me. I knew it all the time. So, you’re jealous and you can’t stand it anymore…

And I actually considered him my best friend…So how could I be so wrong? Again…I find myself in the same situation, encouraging toxic friendships.

So, I’m sitting here…looking into my soul. I see them, the voices that kept me from wanting more, from being more. I also see an inner strength I never knew I have. And a special light…

Love…because loving and accepting ourselves is the first step into accepting the others without judging.

And even if your smile has traces of tears, it’s still better than a happy ever-after mask…