Introversion Impulses -short story

 

“You have to let people see the truth of who you are”, she said.

I had no doubt that her intentions were sincere, that she was trying to get me to share more of myself, more of my work and to come out of the shell I’d grown comfortable in.

I also felt that she was somewhat attracted, that she was holding back by her own standards and not divulging her interests or motives for conversation. Why on earth would she extend such kindness, such interest in me or my words? Maybe she was thinking out aloud? Maybe I’m looking too far into her words, but she continued.

“You can’t hold back if you want people to find you, you know, if you want to commit to someone whole heartedly you have to show them who you are, how else will they commit to you and share themselves with you as well?”

She strangely intertwined the idea of commitment to a person within the idea of the collective she seemed to be generally referring to earlier in the conversation.

Only in a perfect world I thought. Perhaps if people were not so mean and would not squash your heart as soon as they had full access to it, not unlike many things losing their lustre once the hardship of having to attain them is overcome.

But my mind kept going back to the question; why was she so interested in me, or my writing? Maybe my words were an easier entry point into a conversation she was holding back from, but before I could articulate a reasonable reply, it happened, like a flood on a page, the same semi-conscious expulsions that propel me to write saw me blurt it right out into the plain of thick air.

“It feels”, I paused, “so invasive though….like a devaluation of sorts. Tell me I’m wrong. Do you really feel you can share that part of you? That crevice so deep and dark that you risk someone else holding it in their hands and having the ability to toss it at will? I think it’s a protective mechanism of sorts, for me anyway. ”

“Protective?”

“Yeah, if I keep that part subdued, to myself, I can control it. If I share it, I have no control.”

“Control what?”

“The urge to hurt someone for hurting me. I couldn’t take that. Sharing something only for them to use it against me.

I might even kill someone for abusing it. The hurt would be too much. I couldn’t contain myself knowing I share a part of me so deep, because I get urged or forced into the idea that I have to be open with a partner, that I have to share everything with a partner only for it to later be used as a method to hurt me, look down on me or whatever. It would for once, perhaps show me the other side of a person who’s lost control and killed another person. Perhaps they’re just people who could not handle their vulnerabilities being known and then discarded. I don’t think I could handle the hurt, I dunno, I’d much rather keep shit to myself. Even this I feel….”

I stopped and realised what I had just said. I could see her eyes turn cold – oh no, she thought I was a monster – and then warm again. Then she surprised me, they welled up as she then looked into her lap and placed one palm over other as if to say she was ready to catch a stream of her tears.

“That’s really quite sad”.

I felt my throat swell and fill with regret.

But she smiled and continued, “and beautiful at the same time”. The tears were now just falling directly onto her jeans as if to say there was no use hiding her own vulnerabilities and the moment was urging her to unshackle her inhibitions, to share more of what she really felt.

I thought about what I just said as the silence tempered the mood into an agreed introspective freeze.

Was I really that fragile, that afraid? Unable to share the truth of myself with anyone because I was repulsed by it all or was it because I was apprehensive of rejection? Am I crazy for thinking it was unacceptable for someone to squash you at will, after you’ve slowly desensitised yourself into sharing a part of you? I rationalised that it wasn’t. That people who did that with disregard deserved to be hurt back.

Could I kill someone over that? I could. I remembered the rage I felt when I was bullied when I was younger and my work I had been struggling with for a week, destroyed by a kid who thought it was cool. I was only twelve years old. Work I had spent hours on, deeply engrossed in, only for him to think it was funny and cool to destroy it. I still remember the coolness of the steel chair legs in my clenched blue fists as I picked many up, one after the other and hurled them with everything I had, directly at his head with no consideration for his life.

At twelve, I was quite comfortable in knowing he could be seriously hurt or die, because what I lost meant that much to me.

I could kill if someone discarded something that meant that much to me.

No, I thought, grand as the the fairytale of believing perhaps that someone could hold your heart in their hands and protect it, the temptation to discard it, the ease of discarding it for their own comfort would probably overwhelm them and they’d ditch your vulnerabilities at the earliest convenience to make themselves comfortable.

I’d much rather not hurt anyone, so I won’t allow them to hurt me by giving too much of myself.

Beautiful as her tears were, they suddenly became bound by a used by date. How I wanted to give her access, how I wished she could hold that part of me forever, safely, but I couldn’t believe it and back into my cocoon I went, and it felt as if the physical space between us grew hands that pushed us away from each other and back into everyday niceties.

Her face was kind enough for me to believe her, but not hard enough to accept the reality of how dark some of us are.
Better for her that she live in a world where she didn’t have to see that part of human capability, the compulsion to meter out justice.

People cannot walk around thinking it’s acceptable to hurt others without knowing there is a consequence.

Souls of men

 

Men let waves of grief engulf them,
hold their breaths until they pass,
surface, and swim on.

Wallowing or drowning is not an option,
men don’t float like spume,
we’re savages raging against whitewash,
but we’re utterly fragile beneath it all,
asking ourselves forever if we’re enough.

What you don’t get to hear is the breaths we hold,
the heartbeats we waste,
the anxiety we covet,
hoping,
we provide enough,
we love enough,
we see enough,
we do enough,
and if we are enough,
then it’s all worth it,
if we die before our anticipated time.

W.E.

An ode to dad, who constantly gave of himself until his last breath!

Chasing the tail of the unknown

I bathe in waves of uncertainty,
I brave in waves of uncertainty.
I’m infatuated with the unknown,
this love affair,
is the elixir of my existence.

I scrape the walls of my soul,
nails bloodied like Qays in search of Leila,
peeling back the veils of the unseen,
just for a glimpse,
a glance,
a dilation of a pupil but once,
a palpation and shortness at once.

Even if they’re my last breaths,
this uncertainty and burrowing towards it,
is far surer than this dragging and temporary.

I have no use for all this mundaneness,
when in the darkness of the morning everything is dead,
and I’m suddenly thrust into the inter-world of life.

One eye open,
the other unwilling,
a physiological metaphor,
an anchor to pull me back from drowning,
my heart hurts and so does my head,
and it daunts me,
that I’m not as in love as I think I am,
this ego trickery,
has dragged me face first into arrogance and assumption,
and shame is now the muse for a time.

Likewise, the unseen does not reciprocate,
show me any signs of acceptance,
is it leading me on, teasing this naive poet,
dragging out a line or ten so that I may realise the uselessness of stretching beyond my means,
or is it stretching me to increase my means?

Maybe, it’s too beautiful for me a companion,
but Divine kindness has intervened with a preview of hope,
because I’m an undeserving beggar,
a dog who’s voice has become grotesque,
who’s request has become insincere,
but on, I request.

W.E.

Image Art  By: Aakash

The patience of writing yourself into validity

 

I’ve patience yet,
my willingness to endure pain,
and be indifferent,
yet utterly conscious of it all,
until prose has its way with me,
is the blissful dichotomy,
that keeps the tongues wagging,
that keeps the minds piqued.

What is this expressive tragedy of a person,
who feels with his fingers,
writ tangled in webs of distance,
and still rages like he’s love yet to give.

A propensity to violence,
nonchalant and stoic,
and patience yet,
statue like patience.

Like leaves awaiting their decay,
like a woman waiting for barrenness to whither.
I have patience that gives birth to patience,
and I write, knowing,
there’s always another moment of indifference.

W.E.

 

An interesting response to the Christchurch Terrorist

Quite the opposite has occurred you imbecile. Your idiotic wishes have failed, perhaps you’ve given hope to one or two lone sharks, but I guarantee you, you’ve most likely made thousands more take a long hard look at themselves and assess if this utter senseless murder is actually what they aspire to.

But still, you’ve given our brothers and sisters who passed at your merciless hands the highest of statutes, granted them ranks beyond your comprehension, weep as your goals have gone unfulfilled and no one will know you for anything more than being excrement, which served to spring forth more beauty than your ravaged soul could ever imagine.

Below is not mine…

Beautifully written by a Chinese revert. (It is written to the killer who attacked Muslims in NZ)

(I) Appreciate that you made the effort to find out the timing of our noon prayer.

Appreciate that you learnt more about our religion to know that Fridays are the days the men go to the Mosques for their congregational prayers.

But I guess there were some things you, rather unfortunately, didn’t get to learn.

Perhaps you didn’t know that what you did made them Martyrs.

And how you have single-handedly raised the statuses of our brothers and sisters in the eyes of their beloved Creator with your actions. And how, through your actions, they will be raised as the most righteous and pious of Muslims.

Perhaps you didn’t know that doing what you did, at the time and place you chose, it actually meant that the last words that escaped their lips were probably words of remembrance and praise of Allah. Which is a noble end many Muslims could only dream of.

And perhaps you didn’t know, but what you did would almost guarantee them paradise.

Appreciate that you showed the world how Muslims welcome, with open arms, even people like yourself into our Mosques, which is our second home.

Appreciate you for showing that our mosques have no locks or gates, and are unguarded because everyone and anyone is welcome to be with us.

Appreciate you for allowing the world to see the powerful image of a man you injured, lying on back on the stretcher with his index finger raised high, as a declaration of his faith and complete trust in Allah.

Appreciate how you brought the Churches and communities together to stand with us Muslims.

Appreciate that you made countless New Zealanders come out of their homes to visit the mosques nearest to them with flowers with beautiful messages of peace and love.

You have broken many many hearts and you have made the world weep. You have left a huge void.

But what you also have done have brought us closer together. And it has strengthened our faith and resolve.

In the coming weeks, more people will turn up in the Mosques, a place you hate so much, fortified by the strength in their faith, and inspired by their fallen brothers and sisters.

In the coming weeks, more non Muslims will turn up at the gates of mosques with fresh flowers and beautifully handwritten notes. They may not have known where the mosques in their area was. But now, they do. All because of you.

You may have achieved your aim of intended destruction, but I guess you failed to incite hatred, fear and despair in all of us.

And while I understand that it may have been your objective, I hate to say that after all of that elaborate planning, and the perverse and wretched efforts on your part, you still failed to drive a divide among the the Muslims and non-Muslims in the world.

For that, I can’t say that I’m sorry.
(A Radiant Muslim)

How to marry, son.

 

Marry a woman with vision my son,
if she can’t see,
if she is so self absorbed,
and afflicted with infatuation,
how will she bear you a son,
gift you a daughter,
that holds humanity in their heart?
What future is there in all that intoxication with the self?

None, I promise you, none.

Do not fall victim to your eyes,
fancy words,
nor the pitter-patter of your heart.

All of that will be nonsense to you,
when in thirty years,
your heart breaks,
because your child bears the same fruit,
of short sightedness.

Wesam El dahabi