"How beautiful..." Those were the only two words that I can muster with all the energy that I have left as the last of the colorful balloons left my fingers.
It was dark and the constant undying symphony of the cricket hiss were the only company I had in the middle of the meadows that I have grew up with. I shivered as my fingers absent-mindedly traced every curve that was carved across the cold gold pendant I held dearly in my hand. Circling the cove of the heart-shaped pendant, I felt a pang of sadness. A wall of tears started forming at the corner of my eyes. I sat quietly in the middle of nothingness, drowned in my own sea of thoughts as the early morning zephyr caressed me ever so softly against my skin.
It was a fine evening when I was trailing the fallen leaves in the middle of Worchestershire, feeling as though the whole world didn't matter. I remembered vividly the cool breeze that I felt against my skin and the brown leaves which were performing its dance recital. I was 25 then, feeling lost and restless, I fled my country looking for a home that I have never had back in the States. I was lost in my own thoughts, amused with everything around me and that was when I saw you. You were gazing into the neverending auburn forest, with such depth in your ocean blue eyes; a look that was so foreign to me. I stopped in my steps, and fidgeted for my camera but it was then when I felt your touch for the very first time. I was startled by your touch but your hand, covered with fresh scars and bruises was ever so gentle. And with that single touch, it was the beginning of our story, a stranger from half way around the world became the only person that has ever captured my heart.
it has been three months since the emotionless man in uniform stood on our doorstep holding a letter stamped by the government. ever since that very day, my puffy eyes stubbornly give in to slumber only at dawn hoping to once again feel your presence keeping me warm in a winter's night. your soft scent lingering in this four walls lets me know that you are still around. i slowly but surely found a home that i have been longing for in your familiar embrace that i dearly miss. it was you who held my hands and steered my tired aimless soul back to path. but you have left me.
you are a hero. you fought against the lump growing behind your brain and triumphed. never once did i see that charming grin of yours leave your beautiful face. you ran into the collapsing building only wanting to give life to the many children who are now in their universities. you've traveled the distance only to tear down the walls which guarded my heart so fiercely so that i could live again. you are everyone's hero, you are my hero.
i remembered when you last held me in your strong arms. your voice softly told me that you will have to do this. deep down, i know that you have to go. i pulled your arms closer to myself and i looked up at your chiseled face through my swollen eyes. you smiled sadly at me but your sincere deep ocean blue eyes never fail to remind me of the very reason why i fell in love with you. i know you will always be with me.
every morning was a battlefield for me. knowing that you will never be downstairs making my favorite waffles, or wishing me a great day before i leave the house for work or kissing me to sleep every night made it all the more difficult for me to leave my bed, my only solitary getaway. it was then, the doorbell rang. a total mess, i reluctantly left the bed to answer the door only to find a simple white envelope lying infront of the porch. it was the last letter you sent from Iraq. i was thrilled, i ripped the edges opened. a piece of paper and the locket you gave me for our wedding fall off. i held the paper in hand. it was the first picture i took of you in the forest. as i flipped it to the back, your familiar handwriting said "be there on your birthday" and the three words i have missed so much, i love you.
it was already the 26th. i rummaged through my belongings and hurriedly flew on the first flight back to Worchesthershire. the familiar roads and buildings greeted me with warmth. it was a different time from when we met. the flowers were blossoming and everyone was welcoming. i woke up early even before the sunrise on the 28th and made my way to the familiar trees. the temperature was rising as i hurriedly brisked to where we first met. i stopped in my steps. it was so beautiful. countless of balloons were planted amongst the blossoming flowers and the proud trees. i once again, felt you.
i will always remember the beautiful line of the unchanging auburn trees against the tall and muscular silhouette which soon be one that I would miss for the remaining years of my life.
an original piano piece by Au Jo Yi.