You lie next to me.
Next to the soft warming glow of a tending fire. Mesmerized you watch the flames dance; mesmerized, I watch you watching. Orange, yellow, crimson, gold; a secret brews in the oceanic depths of your deep blue eyes.
Eyes. Eyes softening as you stare into the blistering pits of universal combustion. The flames fickle and cackle, drowning the last remains of residual air. I sprawl across our makeshift camp, crinkling the old hotel sheets we tossed so carelessly onto the floor. This moment feels like a small slice of our heaven, hung and strung so delicately together by short wisps of time. It’s the most intricate array of fleeting chances smiled upon by the fortuitous Lady Luck.
A stale half bottle of wine. A crusty rind of an aging cheese.
And like my favourite book, I read you. The way your royally ruby-stained lips slowly chap with the sweltering, dry heat. The way your lower jaw locks as you are met with a soft gust of hot air. The way the creases across your face deepen to outline the most passive of emotions. The way your mind works, and, the way your thoughts paint the world with the most terrific of colours, naked to even your closest lover’s eye.
The flirting of the flames, laughing in absolute mockery, sympathizing in a bittersweet empathy. Your voice trembles playfully with the shadows; your words roll smoothly off your tongue, slow and sweet, dripping into a jar of thick, viscous honey. And in vast contrast, you melodify my name, like it’s the most harmonious sound fluttering free from a light summer flute. The notes dancing to our pipedream conceived under a dazed, golden sun.
I coil up against you. Your heartbeat riots mine in violent rebellion. It reminds me of an aquatic creature – the swell of a single strong pump chased by a trailing tail of fading dreams. Swimming, gliding, meandering through the soft currents of my wandering mind. I am experiencing an entirely new spectrum of emotions. Feelings of utmost fullness.
A subtle scent of rustic firewood. Your breathing is so gentle. Your tenderness, so mystical. The faintest and lightest drop into the stillest of waters. Rippling the body, a masterpiece so finely tuned. I’m lost in your maze and my senses trance in blissful oblivion.
Sent from Seattle via a beautiful moment when the Earth stopped moving
“Why do you love traveling?”
I recall, dusting the lids of the moments tucked in the closet of my memories, shoveled between decaying, mahogany bookcases nestled in the labyrinths of my mind. Soft pages, my fingers rummaging through, the soft sunlight from a window of awareness, descends ever so delicately upon the fragile pages of experiences, backpack hanging off one shoulder, meandering through a fish market, balancing on the journey of a 60-mile bike ride, pages, pages yellowing with antiquity, bounded by the smell of old, worn leather.
Love is a feeling. A melancholic longing for something in the past, present or future. It is an overwhelming craving, of lust, longing, a moment in its purest freedom, in its untainted form, contained only by the chains of passion.
We are constantly seeking, craving, wildly sprinting after a love tied to a human being. We need, no, want, no – are fixated on this superficial idea of a lover, a savior – the kind that wears a Superman cape and swoops down to save you from the perils of a humdrum life.
Why do we tie our every changing wants, our desire to understand ourselves, to one unique human being? Why do we tie our happiness, our sadness, and all that comes between to someone we arbitrary picked out from a sea of individuals?
Places, not People.
I believe you should fall in love with a place. With an experience. With a feeling, created by a mix of fleeting instants. A shy first kiss on the bottom of the Swiss Alps. Hands cold, toes damp, snow gently falling as we slowly brush the frosty crystals off our innocent youth. A lustful moment in a midsummer night, night as dark as the tail feather of a black raven. And once again, next to you. Craving, lusting. We’re surrounded by late 19th century buildings, the night as silent as a dead man’s grave while neither one of us can admit, and accept the innocence behind each other’s eyes. A two hour journey, cramped into two small seats on our way to New York City. A runaway, a getaway. A moment steeped with freedom and beautiful impermanence. Love songs recited ever so tenderly. Lost in our whimsical fairytale, our heads rest with melancholy at a companionship that cannot be.
Places, not People.
It is the moment that moves us. The series of happenings that unanimously unraveled to make the heart quiver. The overwhelming sense of perfection.
People are like stars. A dust within the speckle of time, a sparkling fragment of a new found memory. People shine, come and go. Ephemeral synchronizations.
Places, however, always remain the same. Past, present and future, they are the old friend who beckons you home, the one who supports both your happiness and sorrow. Places are the blank canvas you are about to paint, about to slash. They are the heavens you are about to glitterize. And with a splash, you illuminate all the small slivers of life. They become a part of you, a part of the dusty memories you keep so closely hidden in those mahogany bookshelves, littering the hallways of your mind’s labyrinth.
Places. Not people. Love the place where you can be you, the place where you will be who you want to be. After all, how can you fall in love with a person, when all you’re looking for is the missing piece of the puzzle to yourself?
(Sent from New York City)
As social beings, we are constantly moving, changing, developing. We continuously chase after different materialistic goods, dreams, desires and satisfaction. Our soulmates are the ones who step in, and rattle up our idea of a conventional world- they show you how to paint with colours that are not constrained by the limits of the rainbow; they are that missing puzzle piece that you are looking for that very second.
These people waltz into your life and unknowingly, transform gaping holes of emptiness into memories of happiness, laughter, and brightness. Fulfilled, complete and feeling as a whole, you do not know, and simply cannot revert to life without these people, for they have sculpted you into the person you are proud of being today. These people create the city you’re living in. They make you feel so carefree, and more importantly, so light.
When your lover breaks up with you or your best friend moves to a different country, you are devastated. I remember meeting my best friend in Year 9. She was my better half and taught me the value of real friendship. When she left Hong Kong to go to boarding school in the UK, I loathed her for it. I felt like she abandoned me to the empty shell of a dead-end city.
Fast forward 7 years down the line, and here I am still referring to her as my best friend. The off-chance we are both in the same city, we would still lie on her hammocks, stargaze with dry red wine, and gossip about work, love and life. Conversation is always effortless.
We all have many different soulmates – each exist for a particular purpose, to enrich and fulfill a particular hollowness. We relate to those we think will make us a better person and like chameleons, we take a little bit of our soulmates and lock them up in our hearts.
But at the end of the day, we are all human and we subject to change. Soulmates exit your life as easy as they enter it. You may meet again one day, but when that day comes, maybe you don’t need them anymore. They live a different life, you live a different life – maybe you both have moved on.
We have all grown to be strangers. Maybe they’re no longer your soulmate, but just a fragment from the past, reminding you of the memories that you used to hang onto so tightly.
You thought you could not live without them but, look at you. You’re alive.
(Sent from Faro, Portugal)