I’ve always been skeptical about love because to me no physical love could actualize the idea of love found in poetry, novels and movies. I believed that I would always have to settle for a kiss that was okay and a touch that didn’t make me feel as safe as I wanted. I was a cynic who kept her heart in a wooden box under my bed and laughed at the people who wore theirs along the edge of their sleeve. But then I met you, and I realized that I had it all wrong.
I contemplate that maybe the reason poets, authors, artists, directors are so obsessed with this idea of love is because no matter how hard they try, they can’t seem to translate to the people who haven’t felt the magnitude of it yet. I know you haven’t got much to go on because I’ve never been in love before and I’ve been so cynical in the past. I know you may be scared because you don’t know whether I’ll love you in the ways you’re meant to be loved or deserve to. So, look at this as a sort of guide– A guide of the ways I will love you.
1. I will love you quietly.
In the same way the waves laps up at the sand, a lover too afraid to be brazen, while the moon watches. I will be there to stitch you up when your seams begin to unravel, when everything begins to slip through like sand between kissed fingers. When everything fails to go your way, I will be there; picking up the broken pieces and cutting myself on the edge. I will not tell you I told you so, I will not look at you with smug satisfaction. Darling, we all make mistakes.
2. I will love you fiercely.
In the same way Kuala Lumpur’s sun unfurls its hissing heat along the city. I will show you what passion really feels like, how it feels to be so consumed by someone that you start to tell time by each of their heart beat. I will teach you to love yourself, to believe in yourself and I will help build you up so that the words of others no longer ring in your ears as you try to go after what you really want. When the others have turn their backs on you, I will fight for you and I will be there for you when you’ve pooled into nothing but cigarette ash and doubt.
3. I will love you slowly.
In the same way Andrew Marvell talks of his mistress in that one poem. I will take my time to explore every corner of your mouth and slow down time just so I can observe the different shades of dark your eyes go when you’re drunk on lust. There’ll be silent moments where I’ll try to sketch out the structure of your face, even though I know I’ll never be able to emulate on paper how the sharpness of your cheekbones present themselves like the edges of a folded origami. I will spend years learning the language of your face just so I can find out what you’re dreaming of when you’re asleep and your jaw squares out.
4. I will love you in flashbacks.
In the same way an cellist with amnesia looks at his cello and longs for its familiarity. When my hair has silvered out and I no longer am able to remember what I had for breakfast, I will believe that you’ve gone out to buy milk–That you’ll be back soon. I will remember the mole 3 quarters down the insolent curve of your neck, the one I’d place my mouth over. I will love you in fragments, in disjointed puzzle pieces– The way you speak, your thoughts, the way you sneeze when you’ve drunk to much.
5. I will love you from afar
In the same way forgotten lovers often do. I will not be angry that you’ve dealt with me the same way you would a styrofoam cup; marking me with your teeth before throwing me out. I will touch the dips of flesh where your teeth went and I will always remember you. 3,5, 7 years from now, I will wake up in the middle of the night and I will think of you. I will be in bed with the curves of bones that happened to remind me of you and I will wonder to myself whether you think of me too.