Why I No Longer Collect Heartbreaks As Trophies

Painting by Jack Vettriano

Painting by Jack Vettriano

If many days ago
Someone asked me
If I would take a hurricane over a breeze
I would’ve laughed
Yes, a hundred times yes
A torrent was always better than a trickle, an avalanche more alive than a rolling stone
Chaos and the promise of probability it sustained
I lived for that
For time was running out.

The allure of madness, the illusion of sheer brilliance weaved around disarray as a way of life
Was all that I had idolised
From one tragic love story to the next
I was collecting heartbreak and personal awakenings like flowers
Except, my sunny days were tearful nights
And sleepless hours counted with cigarettes
Strewn amidst half hearted resolutions
And poetry that told me I was special
I loved it
I loved the rush of each new beginning
And I knew the horror of the endings
But I had never known the middle
For life was short
And middle takes time
But time was running out.

I met you and I wouldn’t say
That lightning struck or stars were brighter
Because they weren’t
For the first time
Stars shone as they should
The World was still moving
And life as I knew it did not change
For the first time
I was at the beginning
And somehow, there was a middle
It was happening to me
With no end in sight
I asked you, and you said
You would take a light drizzle over a storm
That made no sense to me
I said we wouldn’t last long, the end was near
You just said
There’s still time.

I no longer collect heartbreak
In fact, I no longer want to think of myself as someone
Whose mornings are new beginnings
And nights – some kind of rebirth
This is my middle
And it’s beautiful
The sun and the moon ascend each day
And I still go on
For chaos spread evenly over a long, long time
Is what the middle should be
And that’s how the planets were built
And cities and monuments
And human history
Because love only feels like chaos when we count the days
And I’ve stopped counting, with you
There’s still time, there always will be
For time doesn’t exist.

Written by Malvika Arora