Love is when two souls live in one body.
I remember my very good friend- Joe- mentioned the above words to me. We were at The Table of Men that night savoring our friendship. He told me the quote was from Aristotle. I remember telling him that, “Aristotle is a delusional dreamer like him for saying that.”
“Two souls can never live in one body,” had been my rejoinder to him.
Joe is a walking reservoir of romantic emotions and fantasies. You always loved that about him. That night he sat on a chair and spilled them on my doubting ears, like a cracked rock spilling spring water on an unmoving stone. I had very little to say to him when it came to matters of the heart anyway, so I allowed his words inundate my already inebriated brain.
He went on that day to drone on about how beautiful and blissful falling love is. He told me that, “it’s the best thing that can ever happen to any living soul.” He equally said, “it gives one unfettered wings to soar so high above the ground,” and that, “a world filled with love is a world filled with fulfillment.” He even narrated how he met Jane, his long time fiancée of three years and how they fell for each other. You should have seen Joe’s face that night. It radiated with that striking smile contented men always had plastered on their faces as he narrated the romantic story of Joe and Jane. He was so wrapped up in his tales that he forgot who he was talking to.
You’d always known me to be a sorely logical and practical man. Thus, none of what Joe said that night appealed to me. Relationship had simply been to me about two individuals coming together to fulfill each other’s wants and desires. And nothing more. I never considered it to be as complicated and emotion-draining as the one Joe mentioned he had with Jane.
I never did understand.
How could I have understood? When I never experienced any emotion as seemingly powerful as the one Joe described to me. Not once in my entire life before you. Could I ever be able to care for someone more than I cared for myself? Could I allow my world, dreams and aspirations to be centered on a particular individual, a total stranger? Why would I seek to destroy my adventurous spirit? Why would I want to confine myself in a monotonous relationship with a single woman? Those and many more were the questions that tugged at me when Joe explained the elements of love to me. It was too unpractical and illogical for me to believe.
But like an apparition you appeared into my life and made me believe. And like an apparition you’re gone leaving a deep hollow in my heart.
I still remember the day we met like it was yesterday. I still relish every memory of it. It was 1:15pm on a beautiful Saturday weather in a bookshop along Ekeki. I wanted to purchase the last copy of Laurann Dohner’s “Valiant”. It turned out that a lady -you- standing next to me wanted the same book. When I turned to look at you, your eyes shone with excitement. I’d been struck instantly by your beauty and friendliness when you smiled at me. You said, “I’m the only one you’ve met that also took to the series and is excited to meet me.”
I’d known right there, right then that I needed to maintain a contact with you. I wanted to know what it was you had that turned something on within me. So we struck up a bargain that I would call and you would narrate what you read to me. The rest I hope is still fresh in your memory.
Since then I lived like a king, knowing my heart was secure in another’s soul- yours. I cared for none other than you. I loved none other than you. You were my centre, my behind and my front. You gave me that unfettered wings Joe talked about. With you by my side, I soared high above the tallest of mountains of doubts and gazed down at valleys of obstacles. I became a conqueror of myself and of the world around me. You were everything to me. You were my love. And I yours.
This was why I’d been doing a lot of soul-searching since the day you left, mostly pertaining to our relationship. For you see my definition of relationship was redefined the moment you walked into my life with a promise of undying love and faith. I became a strong believer in love as an unshakable foundation a relationship must rest on to flourish as one expects, and that eternity is a core characteristic of mutual love. Confusion saddled that belief. Was this supposed to be one of those occasional winds that rock a steady boat on calm water? Or was it supposed to end just like everything else? Or had I expected too much from it? Was Gran right when he said that time is certain to make love pass? However, with all these questions bothering my mind I was certain about one thing: I needed you like I needed my eyes. I don’t want to believe that Gran might be right for I still feel something for you. I don’t want to believe that our souls have been separated over my mistake. Maybe I expected too much by believing I would be forgiven. But forgiveness as I was told is the essence of love. Did I expect too much by asking for your forgiveness? I desperately need you back.
Back to where you belong- my heart. Gran doesn’t have to be right you know.
Do I need to remind you of what we had together? Still have if I can speak for myself. Those songs we used to sing, with you adding a soprano to my hoarse bass. Even with our terrible voices, it was so beautiful when we sang it together. Now I can sing no more. There’s no soprano to my bass. Remember the books we reviewed together. The stories we wrote together. The promises we made to each other. The wonderful times we shared together. Remember how you loved the poems I wrote for you. We’d been perfect, you and I. We were fulfilled and lovely and happy. It doesn’t have to come to an end.
I still feel something stir within me whenever I see you. I felt it yesterday at Joe’s wedding. Just a look at you reminded me of the things I missed and still wanted. That well-sewn azure gown with white embroidery looked very lovely on your trim figure. The matching Gucci bag and pumps exuded a touch of your stylish attitude. The gold watch and bangles adorning your ankles capped your exquisite dressing. Your braided spaghetti-styled hair was equally splendid. Some tresses cascaded down over your smooth heart-shaped face, but it did little to hide your eyes from me. Oh those eyes. Those brown soothing eyes I used to look into and see myself lifting the world. You were a sight to behold. I couldn’t tear my eyes off you. Neither could every other male guest at the wedding. When you walked my direction, I saw your eyes flicker the way they used to whenever I was in suit. “It makes me look sharp and masculine,” you used to tell me. I waited to hear it from you then but you only mounted a weak hello on a weak smile, and then breezed past me to congratulate my dear friend and his wife. You and I can make a better couple than Joe and his wife. I know we can if only you’d learn to forgive, learn to listen to your eyes and heart.
Remember how you used to dream of what our honey moon would look like if we got married. Remember I used to fantasize about it with you, even when I was already familiar with every inch of your body. A feat you told me no man before me had been able to achieve. I knew how you ached when my tongue caressed your earlobes. I knew the intensity of emotions my lips evoked when it was locked into yours. I knew how you shuddered uncontrollably when my mouth found its way to your thigh. I was familiar with the moan of excitement my gentle penetration elicited from you. I equally felt the fulfillment that came with the jets of your innards as you climaxed. You always wondered how it would feel like doing those things we used to do when married, and on a water bed in another continent with me reading those poetic lines with each trust. I always laughed at how wild your imaginations were and shared those dreams with you.
This gulf shouldn’t exist between us right now. We had plans, you and I. Huge and healthy plans that would have stood the test of time. Plans that equaled no other. What happened to those plans?
You and I had been two seeds in a pot once. We’d been two lovely birds on a tree top picking each other’s feathers and singing our hearts out for the world to hear. We had dreams of growing old together and placing our bones in museums to showcase to the future generations what love should look like. Like Winstead opined in her book, our relationship had been that of two soldiers fighting side by side against the world. We’d been a great team, you and I. In fact there had been no equal to you and me.
Now all that is gone like the beautiful summer season. I keep hoping and wishing for it to return and that if it does it would look exactly like the last one.
I wouldn’t have kissed that girl if I didn’t think the lady was you. You know I’d never deliberately do anything to hurt you. I’d been drunk after your birthday party that night. When I staggered into your room like a rocking ship on troubled water and saw her wearing the same black dress you’d worn, I sincerely thought it was you. I never knew she was your roommate. I was so convinced that when I realized my mistake, you were already standing at the doorway with hurt and anger marring your beautiful face. My world crashed right then. But I hoped I would be forgiven for it was only but a kiss. Little did I know you’d been hurt so badly, that while I was seeing a little mistake you were seeing your past life all over again. Little did I know you’d chosen to protect your heart immediately you saw me with her. All my attempts to talk to you were rebuffed by you. Not even Joe’s intervention could make you change your mind.
What else shall I do to make you see how much I regretted my action?
It’s now two months since you left. Each day I thought about you, chastised myself for what I’d done. I made sure to convey to you how deeply sorry I was in the letters I sent you. But you still chose to ignore me. I’m nothing but a fallible man and I fight the tempting offers of lust every minute of the day. I used to fight it better when you’re with me. I only needed to look in your eyes and see love undulate inside and lust would be gone like a camera flash. I can’t fight it any longer and I’m tired of writing you letters and not getting any response. My plea has become trite to my mouth and pen. I can’t think of any new way to put across my sorrows to you. I’ll understand if you still choose not to reply me, but know that this will be my last letter to you. I’m sorry you had to go through what you went through. I wish you luck in whatever you decide but know that my heart will always belong to you.
Lots of love.
From you know who.