…a vague and constant desire for something that does not and probably cannot exist … a turning towards the past or towards the future.

I fervently love this single word that can encompass so much feeling, so much nuance.  Maybe THIS will be my first tattoo. Probably not, I’m too indecisive to settle on this word for long. I’m scared of getting sick of things.

It is how I feel always. Suadades. More ardently lately. Winter always gets me singing the blues. Wondering, yearning, Ted Mosby-ing, mooning over Mr. X, wherever he may be right now.  I tried to become a hardened cynic, believe me. At nearly 25 and still being all shiney-eyed when it comes to romantical notions isn’t cute anymore. It’s downright dumb. It’s kind of cruising for a bruising. I know.

The thing is, well this is the thing. I’ve always been a late bloomer. It always took me a little longer than the pack to come around to things. I don’t think I’m quite ready yet for Mr. X anyhow. That’s okay with me.

BUT…Mr. X, wherever you are, whatever you may be doing now. I want you to know that no matter how long it takes, I will never give up hope that you exist, this vague desire, this suadades, I have been feeling it for centuries, all my past lives, and particularly this one. Sometimes the pangs come from nowhere, but I feel like there’s some sort of a magnet in my soul that must be drawing nearer to you. Ever closer. Ever searching.

I’ve had my misfires, certainly, but that’s only because I didn’t listen to my gut. I settled. That doesn’t work. I learned my lessons and I’ll never do it again. I’ve decided I’ll remain celibate all the rest of my days if that’s what it takes…no I don’t necessarily expect the same from you.

Yours eternally, infernally,

Ms. X

PS – Do you feel it too? Particularly this time of year?

Oh and just because I think you and I will both relate…

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A unique Galician-Portuguese word that has no immediate translation in English. Saudade describes a deep emotional state of nostalgic longing for an absent something or someone that one loves. It often carries a repressed knowledge that the object of longing might never return. It’s related to the feelings of longing, yearning.

Saudade has been described as a “…vague and constant desire for something that does not and probably cannot exist … a turning towards the past or towards the future.”[2] A stronger form of saudade may be felt towards people and things whose whereabouts are unknown, such as a lost lover, or a family member who has gone missing. It may also be translated as a deep longing or yearning for something that does not exist or is unattainable.

Saudade was once described as “the love that remains” or “the love that stays” after someone is gone. Saudade is the recollection of feelings, experiences, places or events that once brought excitement, pleasure, well-being, which now triggers the senses and makes one live again. It can be described as an emptiness, like someone (e.g., one’s children, parents, sibling, grandparents, friends, pets) or something (e.g., places, things one used to do in childhood, or other activities performed in the past) should be there in a particular moment is missing, and the individual feels this absence. In Portuguese, ‘tenho saudades tuas’, translates as ‘I have saudades of you’ meaning ‘I miss you’, but carries a much stronger tone. In fact, one can have ‘saudades’ of someone whom one is with, but have some feeling of loss towards the past or the future.

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Monologue for an Onion

Suji Kwock Kim

I don't mean to make you cry.
I mean nothing, but this has not kept you
From peeling away my body, layer by layer,

The tears clouding your eyes as the table fills
With husks, cut flesh, all the debris of pursuit.
Poor deluded human: you seek my heart.

Hunt all you want. Beneath each skin of mine
Lies another skin: I am pure onion--pure union
Of outside and in, surface and secret core.

Look at you, chopping and weeping. Idiot.
Is this the way you go through life, your mind
A stopless knife, driven by your fantasy of truth,

Of lasting union--slashing away skin after skin
From things, ruin and tears your only signs
Of progress? Enough is enough.

You must not grieve that the world is glimpsed
Through veils. How else can it be seen?
How will you rip away the veil of the eye, the veil

That you are, you who want to grasp the heart
Of things, hungry to know where meaning
Lies. Taste what you hold in your hands: onion-juice,

Yellow peels, my stinging shreds. You are the one
In pieces. Whatever you meant to love, in meaning to
You changed yourself: you are not who you are,

Your soul cut moment to moment by a blade
Of fresh desire, the ground sown with abandoned skins.
And at your inmost circle, what? A core that is

Not one. Poor fool, you are divided at the heart,
Lost in its maze of chambers, blood, and love,
A heart that will one day beat you to death.
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Pleasure for the beautiful body, but pain for the beautiful soul.

Often in times of sadness I return to familiar haunts, familiar books or passages that have offered me solace – or sometimes -a more eloquent form of validation for my feelings  than I could come up with myself.

One of my most favorite essays to read, on occasion, just to remind myself of the beauty of it’s prose is “De Profundis” by Oscar Wilde. Not really the best example of his razor sharp wit or caustic observations of society…but, I mean, he was in jail when he wrote it. He was at the bottom of the bottom, it is the pinnacle of self indulgent, angst ridden, self reflection. Wilde, being the brilliant writer he is, somehow still churns out something that is soul shakingly beautiful.

“I remember talking once on this subject to one of the most beautiful personalities I have ever known: a woman, whose sympathy and noble kindness to me, both before and since the tragedy of my imprisonment, have been beyond power and description; one who has really assisted me, though she does not know it, to bear the burden of my troubles more than any one else in the whole world has, and all through the mere fact of her existence, through her being what she is – partly an ideal and partly an influence: a suggestion of what one might become as well as a real help towards becoming it; a soul that renders the common air sweet, and makes what is spiritual seem as simple and natural as sunlight or the sea: one for whom beauty and sorrow walk hand in hand, and have the same message. On the occasion of which I am thinking I recall distinctly how I said to her that there was enough suffering in one narrow London lane to show that God did not love man, and that wherever there was any sorrow, though but that of a child, in some little garden weeping over a fault that it had or had not committed, the whole face of creation was completely marred. I was entirely wrong. She told me so, but I could not believe her. I was not in the sphere in which such belief was to be attained to. Now it seems to me that love of some kind is the only possible explanation of the extraordinary amount of suffering that there is in the world. I cannot conceive of any other explanation. I am convinced that there is no other, and that if the world has indeed, as I have said, been built of sorrow, it has been built by the hands of love, because in no other way could the soul of man, for whom the world was made, reach the full stature of its perfection. Pleasure for the beautiful body, but pain for the beautiful soul.”

That is all. For now. I feel bloggylicious tonight, so maybe I will continue. But my moods are fickle, so we’ll see.

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A Black Wedding

Something I saved from my friend Eric. I think of him at the most peculiar times. We’re not friends anymore, we completely lost touch. I can’t even find him on facebook. This is still one of the most beautiful pictures painted in my mind however.

I want a black wedding
I want everything black
Bridesmaid dresses
groomsmens tuxes
my tux
a matte nondescript black with no distinctive stand out qualities
I want even the invitations to the wedding to request that the people in attendance wear all black
An odd request you may say?
Certainly odd, but let me paint a picture for you.
You’re a fly on the wall at my wedding.
As you look down all you see is black.
Black fills the pews, sweeps the entirety of the church.
Ahead of you stands the groom, bridesmaids, and groomsmen, all in stark black clothing, surrounded
with the blackest flowers.
You watch as the flower girl walks down the black carpetted aisle.
Black carpet which was laid out explicitly for the occasion.
You watch as she sprinkles white flowers on the carpet.
As if she was deliberately creating a path for something so pure and beautiful.
Nearly the whole wedding party has gathered at the front of the church.
The doors at the rear of the church close.
There is only one piece missing at the front of the church.
The Center Piece.
The bride.
The entire church is filled with a black, almost palpable silence.
Then a beautiful, instrumentally perfect, vocally stunning, six and a half minute version of Ave Maria
rings through the inwards of the church sending a hush over the already silent attendance.
The people sitting throughout the crowd are no doubt wondering, why everyone is wearing black, why all
the decorations are black, and surely what all this suspense is building up to.
On the last note of Ave Maria, dawns the first note of the Wedding March, and the answers to everyones questions.
As the doors to the back of the chapel swing open, light streams forth filling the room with an iridescent
glow; you see what seems to be the only girl in the world take what seems to
be her first step. For today is her day.
She is wearing a bell shaped ivory dress, that slightly drags the ground. And as she steps out of the light and
takes her first step on the trail of petals which gracefully cover her path, everyones breath is simultaneously
taken away. A glimmer of white in a sea of black, she makes her march to the front of the room to join her other half.
And however unconventional, and eccentric the people in attendance find the proceedings to be, no man can deny
she’s the most stunning thing in the room, and no woman can say they don’t wish they were her.

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An untitled poem by an author I don’t remember

She wonders about her own luck, what the future
masked in financial pitfalls and uncertain
self could unveil. Bills are crumpled on the
nightstand, covered with penned calculations.
She strives to chart this world while sensing
conquerors from all sides. Yet she folds
origami birds from the paper of her glass
bottle at the cafe table, to the fortune of
what comes after her.

Her compassion is such that she notices bird
cries at an outdoor cafe, not as nature, but as
hungry solicitors. As if feeding a restless
babe, she casually rips off  bits of her almond
muffin, to scatter on the cobbled street. But she
relates to strangers to be wary of her, for
“I seem nice at first glance, but I’m rather
inconsiderate at heart.”

She is often afraid, of her own dreams, it seems. For
3  months she’s been planning an escape from her
problems, 3 pills here, 2 there, sleep a few hours, 3 pills
here, 2 there, sleep a few more hours. “who will care for
my kids, my dad, what about my friends?” Her smile is
often pale, like a cloud in midwinter. But beneath her scarf
of fragility is formidable endurance like the draft horse.

She doubts her own goodness, feeling inadequate.
She often apologizes for small accidents, “oh,
I’m so sorry!  I must be stupid.” or asks
if she’s been bothersome or dissatisfactory.
But she brings hot tea in the mornings of her own
will, and sprinkles little kisses like a spring
shower. Her fidelity is a still stone on a
rocky summit, and her arms are the warmth
of a hearth fire.

So that to say: I love her, is not
a fanfare of spring flowers bursting with
celebration; but instead, a quiet affirmation of
the sun’s existence.

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