“If you love something enough, let it go; if it comes back it was truly meant to be”
I’ve heard these words, or variations on them, more or less constantly for weeks now and they never cease to make me sick; sick because rather than expressing some noble sentiment or offering profound insight into the true nature of romantic love, they symbolise but one thing: cowardice. The phrase leaves the air stale with fear, with a craven fatalism I abhor, and leaves me feeling that the cretin uttering them never deserves to feel true love, the kind of love that leaves you weak as a kitten, all the while supplying you with strength you had never imagined, love that infuses your dreams and permeates your every waking moment. “Let it go”? Believe me, if you had ever experienced love this pure you would hold on to it with your dying breath. Not for me this helpless, wretched sentiment; I propose a revision:
“If you love something enough, fight for it with every muscle in your body; scratch and claw against the vicissitudes of fortune which conspire to wrest if from your grasp; bellow yourself hoarse until your vice is but a whisper; don’t loose your grip until every last ounce of strength is drained from your frame and you can hold on no more.”
Unfortunately, as with all else in this world, there is a price to pay. The reward for displaying such valour in the face of fading feelings is beyond imagination, glory and riches the likes of which the greatest king could scarce dream. The punishment for failure is utter spiritual death, all hope lying drained of life on the altar before you. The end of dreams, the end of faith, the end of the future. The body lives on but life, at least for some time, is robbed of the vibrancy, the detail and nuances, which rendered it so glorious before.
Such a position I find myself today, my struggle finally at an end. Rather than let love fade I took up arms and sallied forth with everything I could muster, every rational argument, every impassioned plea, every desperate promise, but all to no avail. Never one to choose my battles wisely I excelled myself this time and threw down the gauntlet in front of an enemy no man could hope to face with any prospect of victory. David and Goliath is a myth. In harsh reality the giant triumphs every time.
Broken and bloodied, I’m now nursing my wounds surrounded by a bleak, wintry landscape which could never be more apt. The fresh cuts and bruises still sting and will take time to heal, time which will be drawn out yet further by the very absence of the love for which I was fighting, but heal they will. To some extent the blows were softened by familiarity, this being the third defeat at the hands of the same enemy, but they hurt all the same.
Did I do the right thing? Was it naive self-torture, some inner masochistic urge, which compelled me to haul my body off the floor and take the same beating over and over again? Perhaps, but one thing I know for certain. I’d do the same in a heartbeat. Love is everything, love is the one purpose I cling to in a world devoid of meaning, love is the key to the universe and life eternal and for that I’d risk all I have, time and time again.
Another far superior man of words, Dylan Thomas, expressed this same sentiment many years ago. He wrote in reference not to the end of love, but to the end of life itself. Given that I find the two to be near indistinguishable it’s only right that I include his thoughts here:
“Do not go gentle into that good night.
Rage, rage against the dying of the light.”