HEARTBREAK

Written By Oorja Engineer



isn’t it always in the pursuit of a person?


HEARTBREAK


is in the subject you spent hours studying in high school, believing with all your heart that it would pitch a tent in your head and make pansies bloom, only to land in college one day, and realise what you’d fallen for was an illusion of the real thing, and the real thing makes your soul shrivel up, it’s no longer a reason to get out of bed.


HEARTBREAK


is in the artwork you ruined, because you sat down over three days to draw with the pencil, but when it came to colouring, you were weak, unable to fend off the devilish urge to plunge right in, no trials, no practise, and so you put oil pastel to sketchbook paper, wrist sloppy with greed to reach the finish line, sadly, your Prussian blue became a shade too dark, and your lemon-yellow failed to shine; now you chug cold, black tea, wishing you’d been just a little patient.


HEARTBREAK


is in the paper you begin working on three weeks before the deadline, scouring sources on the internet till your eyeballs burn, taking three different kinds of notes in three different documents, poring over every word choice, passionate about every claim, dreaming of thesis statements, adding an extra comma, that dramatic pause, to your conclusion because you’ve worked hard and you revise with pride; now you can’t be blamed (how were you to know how this would end?); but that’s the thing about love, your heart swells for an a-plus, and that’s the thing about heartbreak, it’s in the paper that fell short and the b-minus you got, it’s in all the could’ve been and where did we go wrong.


HEARTBREAK


is in the words you’d once let spill so freely out of you, never chiding them for how awkward they sounded, however purple they were stained, you didn’t care that they were said a hundred times before, you only wanted the feeling that came after, of having let go, having been honest, but those words, they aren’t yours anymore; it’s been long since you handed them over to the technicalities of writing, the various tips and rules scrawled across websites, where each bullet point shoots through yet another feeling, until words stop burning with feelings, and feelings stop fueling words, cause you’ve handed those words over to the fear of seeming stupid, losing rhythm, in submission to the sentences, out there, flowing with more grace, more eloquence, than yours ever will, and so heartbreak is in the words you lock up, in the orders you scream at them, ‘show yourselves with beauty, or don’t bother showing up at all!’; heartbreak is in the words you thought weren’t good enough, so they killed themselves, leaving ghosts in place of memories, and blank pages in place of art.


HEARTBREAK


is in the discipline you flirt with at the beginning of a semester, but what should’ve been a fling stretches into late nights, early mornings, long weeks, unwanted weekends, and every time he whispers a new thought into your ears, you freeze, burn, and wonder where this has been all your life; then you scroll deeper down, cause his soul is old, and it’ll take you more than a lifetime to explore it, and as you do, wide-eyed, find yourself thumbing at bites left on his body by past lovers, and think to yourself, god, he has such a long list of past lovers, some of whose names will never be forgotten, whose touches will always remain, and you feel like a toothpick next to those oak trees, competing with people who came fifty, sixty, seventy years ago and shook his heart forever, with their big brains and seductive ideas; but sometimes, you’re only thinking of how the world looks different when he’s beside you, answers in the things you never questioned, questions in the things you thought were answers, he puts in you a hot hunger to read and learn and change the way you live; so heartbreak is in the days you don’t get him, when he’s trying to tell you something, and your notebook is chock-full of his voice, down to the very last inflection, but you never seem to understand, and he isn’t slowing down (are you meant to be?); heartbreak is in the way he turns his nose up at your essay, at all of the three thousand words, because what seemed like a revelation to you means nothing to him; heartbreak is in the way he’s unimpressed, unmoved, saying, ‘you’re nothing next to the one before’; and he shows you the door, but even if you were to step out today, you’d come back running tomorrow, cause heartbreak is in there as well, being unwanted, unwelcome, knowing not how to love, but loving anyway.


HEARTBREAK


in the pursuit of art and academia, that deserves to be written on too.

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