The comfort of sadness

a circling wind of sadness, I can feel it, I can feel it circling me, staking me out, drawing nearer to its prey. I don’t have the energy to duck or dive. I don’t know where it comes from, or why it wants me. It is soft and weaving through the air like silk above my head. It dips down and it rises slowly back up, it takes a little bit of me with it when it goes, until all of me goes, until I follow it. It traces cold fingers down my spine, it trembles across my shoulder blades. It wants me to close my eyes and get lost. Music is no help.  Music floods me with wordless emotions, more and more of them, rippling through me, tugging at me until I go limp. Realisations comes like waves.  They beat at my heart one after the other, with brief exhalations in between.  Each wave is bigger than the last.  They aim to knock me down with what they know.  They know it and I feel it.  I stand still when it takes me.  But the world is rushing by in streams of violence and colour, trying to shake me to the ground.  Life is a snapshot.  Moving images and pungent emotions that squeeze at your insides.  Blows to the body.  All of it makes us want to walk away.

The sadness drapes me in calm.  Slows me down.  Takes my hand.  Leads me to a familiar place where my eyes grow wide.  It’s all right, just to feel it.  It’s all right just to take it.  Close your palm over it.  Your life.  I am a speck of dust and bone and blood, rolling around in an upright form that longs to fall.  I am the taste of the last drop of wine in the glass, that flicks around the tongue and dreams of another.  I am rising up at the same time I am falling down.  My heart sings.

Sadness carves a hole.  Breaks through the ice.  Chips down the walls so that the waves can roll in.  They feel warm, and roll you away slowly, like a dream.  The sadness is kind, and wraps arms around you when you sleep.  Time goes fast.  Each moment a blink.  Happiness hurts. Good feelings swell your heart until it aches and drips with love.  It needs somewhere to go.  Sadness is like the waves of the ocean, reaching in and out, rocking you. Happiness is a tease and a risk.  Life hurts because it is so very beautiful.  And it hurts more when you realise this, when you feel it in your bones, when tears push to the corners of your eyes blurring the edges, when your heart pounds and your skin sweats, and your lip quivers.  It hurts more when you realise that nothing lasts forever.  That everything must end.  That we are all alone.  It hurts because it means that nothing really matters.

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