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ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.

By Rooineck


I am writing this down, although no one will ever read it, most of all the one person I really want to read it. I am doing this because, although once it is finished I will destroy it, I need to. To work out how I feel? I know that. Just to feel once more, then, perhaps.

Today I lost the woman I love. She turned around and walked away from me, not looking back. She kissed me first, a kiss that I felt everywhere and then told me that although I could do nothing about the way I felt, she could. So she did.

I watched her from my window, inside the physical prison that I am condemned to and from inside walls of my own making that no one but her has ever got past. It broke my heart to watch her go. I don't know if I will ever hear from her, see her again. I desperately want to.

She has gone home, to do what? What does she do to relax? What does she drink? What does she eat? All the things I don't know about her. So many things that a lover takes for granted. What is her favourite film, piece of music, colour?

I know some things about her – her perfume, the smell of her hair. Her understated make-up, severe suits, creating and emphasising the barrier between us. I know she is brave, facing up to things and dealing with people that I would not like to deal with. She is kind and compassionate and I know she feels something for me, but she can still walk away from our 'inappropriate' relationship.

It's not an abuse of power when I feel the way I do about you and I think, no, know that you feel about me the same way!

She is principled and stubborn. I cannot fault her for that, though she breaks my heart with those principles. The right thing is a curse. Even though here, deep inside, I know that it is the right thing.

I want to know so much about her, and I want to share myself with her too. I want to be there after she gets home from a stressful day at work, run her a bath, candles and wine ready; massage the stresses away from her body, cook her a meal, feed her, make love to her all night long.

All our conversations and meetings have been so intense here. I want to take her out for dinner – does she like Indian, Chinese, Mexican, Italian? I want for us to enjoy each other, each other's presence, each other's company. Something that we may never have a chance to do.

I want to make her laugh by being silly, have her kiss me better when I cut myself or bang my head. Does she know that I cry like a baby when I chop onions; that I can't stand rap music? Does she care?

I sit here, lost in the world that I want, that has been taken away from me, the last shred of all I had to work for and to hope for gone. Instead I have the world that my body occupies. This place is never silent. I listen to the voices, shouting, screaming, crying and threatening. I want to yell at them, rail against the system, hit something, hurt someone, as I am hurting.

The numbness has passed now. I hurt inside, deeply. The tears have dried for the moment and I am not the same. I could not be the same, having known and loved her. She is with me, in my mind and my heart forever, even if I never see her again. Loving her has changed me, even as the women I have loved in the past have changed me, but not this much, not this painfully.

I regret few things in my life, even the actions that put me here. And I cannot regret being here because I would not have met her, but I do regret not knowing her in other circumstances.

Today the most beautiful, caring, loving, unique, special woman in the world walked out of my life. I had no choice, could say nothing to stop her. I have lost everything. But I still have me. So I shall sit here, watching the changing colours of the sky and the moon as it charts it course through the heavens. I can make out the seas on the moon, my companion through many nights and thoughts of her. The seas of Crises, Storms and Imbrium, the Sea of Tears. My old friends.


Part two: Before

I sit here, unable to read; not wanting to talk, because I want to talk of her; restless. I can't look forward, because now I have nothing to look forward to. I don't want to live in the present, because what is there about this place to want to think about?

I see snapshots of my past. Me, aged 19, working on a summer job. The work is hard and the hours long, but the money is good, especially when you are that age. The sun is shining, I and my friends are smiling.

I look at myself as I was then. Philip Larkin's words come unbidden into my mind:

"Never such innocence,
Never before or since,
...Never such innocence again."

And I was innocent, then. I had no idea what was before me, what would happen. I had no foreknowledge that one day I would be here, imprisoned for murder.

Then I was living a dream. The world was at my feet. I was invulnerable, believed in many things that I now know don't exist: justice, happily ever after, humanity, dignity. What's human and dignified about being locked up for twenty-three hours a day with an open toilet?

It is an optimistic picture. Therein lies hope, confidence, a teenager's ego, fragile and insecure. A conflict of characteristics, but always hope and wonder at what the world held for me.

My mind moves forward. Trisha. Holidays together - smiling and laughing into the camera; sun-kissed skin, unlined faces. Carefree, young. Our first dinner-party together: the linen crisp and white, candles unlit. Food still being cooked. Everything still to happen.

Later on that evening pictures showed a different story: red wine spilled onto a white cloth, looking like blood, a libation to the Gods; a forest of empty bottles on the table. A group of people, obviously drunk and putting the world to rights - what my parents would have called debauched behaviour.

But the Gods weren't listening, were they? The world never got put to rights and here I am, alone. You are born alone, you live alone and you die alone. Can anyone ever truly be with us inside our heads? Would I ever really want anyone there?

I have felt this before. Alone in the midst of a crowd of people, isolated and solitary. It is especially true of this place. The wolves stalk the sheep and only the strong can survive without visible scars.

The future does not bear thinking about, now she has gone. The present is too painful to want to think about and the past? The past could never have prepared me for this.

Our history is what makes us. Everything I do, everything that has happened to me has made me me. I'm just not sure that I want to be me at the moment.

The End

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