A line from a book he once read kept echoing in his mind; more than eight months had passed since the words first came across his wandering eyes and left them in their search for the next phrase. To be fair, he’d admired the context, the wording, and the possible meaning behind it, but never really had he understood it; of course, “understood” as in the sense of feeling it, feeling the true meaning — the one that can only be understood, or felt, by life itself.
What’s changed? One may wonder. In terms of event, not much happened; only what is known to be regular for everybody; what is known to be expected for everybody. Indeed, nothing extraordinary happened, regardless whatever he might have thought at some point. Even deep inside, although he underwent the overwhelming belief that he was on the verge of a milestone; a course that should mark his life, nay, that should direct his life — his bleakly but intelligently planned out life — into the honest happiness of joy and pain, as well as of arbitrary energy which was thought to take hold of his existence and add lively significance to his years to come; although he underwent that overwhelming belief, deep inside, when in moments of lucidity, which are only to be hinted to the soul and glimpsed by distant emotions, he knew that he was well far into his usual zone, detached, and hasting for a cold future of slow decay in spirit .. a rush of lassitude was still the main theme of his days.
Hopes, realities, technicalities, requirements, commitments, duties, revelations, and finally the devastating shock; doubts, quarrels, over thinking, selfishness, and, most of all, subjectivity; the complexity of difference along with the impossibility of harmony — all that kept him restrained and somewhat shut even tighter. He knew the storms in his mind were mere gratification of the facts, but he’d never been in concord with the common simplicity, nor had he ever been able to avert looking into an austerity in the offing. Was this a bliss or a curse, he knew not.
The line itself spoke of death (something that has absolutely nothing to do with all this): a character in the book is to be shot; when the order of firing is given, he is not afraid of dying, no; he’s only nostalgic about life; he doesn’t care about death, so he doesn’t fear it; he cares about life and no more than in the sense of missing it. Evidently, he understood now this meaning; he, nonetheless, contributed to the line its agreement with anything that is to be ended in one’s route of living. If anything is over for one reason or another, he felt no fright, no wondering of what is to come. Whatever done away with is not to be yearned or cried over. Whatever lost is lost and gone without further bewilderment or soreness. The only sensation left for him is that of nostalgia, which suits his murky path, dismal fantasy, and dreary character well.
“Death really did not matter to him but life did, and therefore the sensation he felt when they gave their decision was not a feeling of fear but of nostalgia.”
It’s funny how a most mundane incident mixed with high-flown contemplations led him to an affected comprehension of an irrelevant and forgotten line. It’s funny why this tedious story — if one may call it so — is shared here and now.