The Marred Glow Of Our Love

Maharaj Kaul

Even before it was born, our story seemed stained with grayness.
When I first met you you were at a stream collecting twigs,
To make a montage to adorn our church portal,
But you turned away from me as if there was not much to see.

How I have pined to see you in the last several months:
To hear the crackle of your voice, to see the cut of your smile;
I miss the luster of your hair, the sparkle of your laughter;
I miss the contour of your silhouette, the rhythm of your walk.

When you smiled the pores of my body opened up,
When you talked your cadences melted into a sweet sensual whisper,
When you wrote letters your emotion outran the logic,
When you sang your opulent, spacious voice seemed could carry the music of the universe.

When I met you recently you were in a pensive state,
Disillusioned with the world, indifferent to life,
Your best hopes for the humanity seemed to have been wilted,
And you were straining to look beyond life.

I tried to comfort you in a thousand different ways:
Tagging you endlessly in your chores and leisure life,
Spending hours with you in silence to match your melancholic mood,
Hanging around you for days to give you invisible company.

I do not know what ails you,
Which broken dream haunts you,
Which hurt has gouged your smile,
What has squeezed life out of you?

In desperation I openly confessed my love to you –
Something alien to my nature,
Thinking it will cure a woman’s love anxiety,
But you did not seem to be very impressed by that.

Much I looked into my soul to find the cause of your studied indifference toward me,
Much I probed into your life to find the source of your malaise,
I came out empty handed, which further plunged me into frustration –
I realized there were mysteries of human life that I could not fathom.

The mood at our last meeting was somber:
You were sullen and cold, mysterious and reticent.
I raised the concern of our future together
But you did not give it much weight.

Slowly it dawned on me that it was not me that you were searching for,
You were trying to reach the innermost recesses of your soul,
You were looking for God – the ultimate reality –
You did not need the worldly love anymore.

I realized that all along you were cool to my amour,
You admired me but did not want to be part of my dream,
You wanted to be my friend
But did not want to be with the driving elements of my soul.

I would have given you all my time,
I would have cared for your every sigh,
I would have been with you till the end of time,
I would have loved you to the last spark of my soul.

In the end much against my impulse I walked away from you,
Carrying with me the marred glow of our love.
What might have been is my recurrent dream,
What has happened is my constant anguish.

Now I am gathering the half-broken and half-grown pieces of our love,
To build a fitting monument to it, so that it radiates a glow,
Even though it was imperfect.

Suffern, New York, 9.19.10

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