Posts Tagged ‘love’

No, you didn’t misread that, and no, you haven’t skipped five weeks into the future.

A short post today.

A very short one.

I almost took today off blogging in fact. But something occurred which had me opening up the app and typing something.

I’ve seen four references to Valentine’s Day today: two people talking about its approach, two people promoting their gigs (which happen to be taking place on that day), and one person lamenting that she’d just broken with her girlfriend and so will likely be spending Valentine’s Day on her own for the first time in a decade.

Which is odd, as a concept to me. No, not the idea of spending Valentine’s Day alone… the concept of not doing so.

I’d say I can’t remember the last time I spent Valentine’s Day with anyone, in a romantic sense, but that’d be a slight exaggeration.

I proposed to my ex-wife on Valentine’s Day 1993. For a naturally unromantic fella like me, I guess that for once I wanted to do it ‘properly’: on bended knee, with a single red rose, and a poem.

Yes, I wrote the lady I hoped would do me the honour of becoming my wife – ok, fiancée, to start with – a poem.

And, while we were married, I think we spent most 14th February evenings together, unless I was working that night.

Since then? Since we split in July 2005?

Ah, well, since then… I’ve never been romantically involved, (to put it formally), or ‘seeing anyone’ (to put it casually), on the day itself.

And although I’ve no doubt I’ve been in company on various 14th Februaries over the past decade and a half, I’ve neither sent nor received cards, nor bought roses nor chocolates for anyone on Valentine’s Day since at least… ooh, February 2006.

Indeed, I’ve neither been romantically involved, nor ‘seen anyone’ at all, for… well, trust me, you don’t want to know how long it’s been. You’d be surprised. (People always think I’m exaggerating when I say that. I’m not. It’s been a very long time.)

I’m sure that should probably bother me tonight more than it does.

I mean, it sometimes does. Sometimes it bites, hard. But not always, not even the majority of the time. And I’m sure that should probably bother me as well.

Here’s another tale I wrote for ElephantWords.

For once, a rarity when it comes to my stories, I remember precisely where this story came from: once seeing a couple walk past me, hand in hand, the woman’s eyes constantly moving, his eyes fixed ahead.


The object they were walking towards proved an interesting backdrop to the monologue she was listening to, she concluded.

It occurred to her, studying the grey, craggy exterior of the mythical creature, that it seemed to parallel the sharp and edgy parts of their relationship; what used to be the exciting bits.

She tuned back into the sound that he’d been making for the past three minutes, idly wondering whether during that time he’d paused for breath. He used to surprise her. When did that stop?

She recognised the tone; he was only in mid-rant, and would continue in that vein for some minutes yet.

They approached the sculpture, and she gazed at it, enjoying the contrast of restrained movement. The Golem held the rock high, as if it was about to rid itself of an irritation in a fit of pique. She looked up at the Golem. It looked annoyed. Definitely annoyed. She felt the same.

She lifted her wrist and examined the face of the watch he’d bought her on the first anniversary of their meeting.

For a moment, she wondered what he’d say if she took it off and just left it. There, at the feet of the Golem. If she just left it there and continued walking, how long would it be before he realised? Would he ever realise? When did he stop noticing her? It hurt more than she wanted to admit.

She realised there was silence; oh, he must have finished. She focussed her eyes on him, wishing so desperately to see what she had seen in him that first night, when she’d been so important to him, his entire reason for staying at the club. She wished he’d pay that much attention to her now.

He paused for breath and then smiled.

“I’m sorry,” he said. “I’ll shut up now.”

She smiled gently… and then the smile slowly faded as he did the oddest thing.

He stopped walking, and she stopped next to him.

“You do know I love you?” he asked. “You know that you matter more to me than anyone else on this whole fucking planet?”

“Yes, of course I do,” she said, failing to bring heartfelt sincerity into the words, but in truth not trying that hard anyway.

“Oh, ok,” he said. “Only I just asked you to marry me.”

© Lee Barnett, 2008