You see those two people standing in the room? One a figure so delicate it looks almost breakable, her sight stretched to faraway lands as she gazes from the frosty window; beyond past, present, or to-be. The other stands by the foot of their bed and stares plaintively at the floor, or sometimes at the creased cover-sheets on the bed which they both use. His hand is in his hair.
These two people—I don’t call them a couple. I call them apologies.
You will see now that the man will walk to the window, slowly, and stop a foot away from her. Then he will put his hand on her shoulder. She will turn back immediately, but not too quickly, and they will both just stand there for a moment until she realizes that he is smiling–that his smile contains every bit of sorrow there is in the world–and then she’ll smile too. Hers will be weaker, like something one would give after accepting the uncaring atrocity of life every day, but neither of them would care.
This will be done casually every other day.
You will find that the space of nothing between them has sucked air so much that in order to breathe, you will have to struggle. You will notice that it doesn’t affect them.
You will find that their eyes are empty but their hearts aren’t. They sympathize sometimes, like they did a while ago, and silently assure one another that it is not and will not be okay, but they will see to it until the end. They won’t complain nor hate. Sometimes he would kiss her lightly on the cheek and she would smile. (A year ago she would’ve had spent hours in the bathroom scrubbing, scratching away the kiss and crying. But this doesn’t happen now.)
You will see that it’s not regret that has settled in as a mountain between them. It’s not a grudge that has separated their ways like a sea in between. It’s not the absence of effort. It’s not that. But it still is.
That is the future I see of ourselves. Pardon me for saying so but it’s true.