About Love

Inspired by and dedicated to Z.M.

 

“Set me as a seal upon thy heart, as a seal upon thy arm: for love is strong as death; jealousy is cruel as the grave: the coals thereof are coals of fire, which hath a most vehement flame” (the “Songs of the Songs”)

This cosy December evening is one of the few remaining pages in the book of 2013. Rachmaninov’s Vocalise is petting my ears and soul, the sun is setting behind the window and the whole magical, pre-Christmas set is completed by the candle light. I am dipping my fingertips into the flame – it does not burn. When kept with care, fire grants us light and the pleasure of warmth. A moment can change everything, turning the tamed and peaceful flame into a wild fire which burns everything down to ashes. Be careful with fire: together with light and warmth it may leave burns.

In the mad mechanic world, where feelings and thoughts are standardised and everything is supplied with a price tag, it is quite natural to turn into somewhat robotic. A protecting shell of positive thinking, complemented with a few advice on how to prosper in smartness and success, serves well when it comes to avoiding possibly harmful feelings and emotions. It seems, poets and writers have said it all, films and theatre plays have explored all aspects of love. But still, do we know everything about it? Is it, in fact, possible to reach the certain heights of the feeling with a protecting crust on top of the heart and the mind? I dare to say, it is a million times more valuable to end up with a broken heart and wings than to remain smart and proud of never falling down. “Chingis Khan and Hitler were rolling in blood, but wheels of love reached them too”.

This too shall pass”, said King Solomon and the Persian poets. “Though lovers be lost love shall not”, argues Dylan Thomas. Short moments sometimes grant us with more life and colour than years and decades. Whether we blaze or smoulder, everything burns down to memories. Let the shine of the bright ones light up your way – for rust of routine will never touch them.

Mikhail Vrubel, Demon and Angel with Tamara’s Soul, 1891.  Illustration for "The Demon" by Mikhail Lermontov
Mikhail Vrubel, Demon and Angel with Tamara’s Soul, 1891. Illustration for “The Demon” by Mikhail Lermontov

The busy, crowded with people and events place we live in, gives no importance to  tender feelings. It is entirely our job to keep those flames alive despite wars and financial crisis (which make a human being so insignificant compared to their own scale), despite never-ending commitments and ambitions. Though, when reality ruins even the utter masterpiece of a feeling, memories of it survive.

There have been kingdoms and kings, and of them no trace has been left, as of a wind that has sped over a desert. There have been prolonged, merciless wars, after which the names of the commanders shone through the ages, like ensanguined stars; but time has effaced even the very memory of them. But the love of the lowly maiden of the vineyard and the great king shall never pass away nor be forgotten,—for love is strong as death; for every woman who loves is a queen; for love is beautiful.” (A. Kuprin, “Sulamith”).

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