I fell in love with a young girl once, she had soft fairy white skin that looked unlike anyone in her family, hair dry and curly but with one effortless braid it looked neat and feminine, and she spoke with a low voice and hardly ever looked into your eyes, words departed from her lips slow as if constructing a sentence was in itself an attempt at something bigger and beyond and her point was lost in her curious mannerisms, those long, timid fingers and lips a virgin pink.
She wanted to do art in college she said, but when I pestered her what exactly this meant she had trouble predicting what she’d do in an art course, but braved this confusion with a smile, it didn’t matter to me what she did, because it was obvious she was meant to do one thing, to absorb, then create. Everywhere we went she had to pause, contemplating a bizarre flower that had not bloomed, in my eyes it was a static green and thin, inellegent stalks but she saw something I couldn’t see, a beauty that just eluded me.
Her paintings however, were vivid and conveyed something that I could grasp, if abstract, I felt the colors, strokes communicated some strong emotion, whether or not we agreed on what it meant it didn’t matter, there was a dialogue between artist and audience, although our bond was deeper than this.
When I say she was young, I mean young in age, she was a mere 16 and I much older, to our friends it was indoubtably a bit inappropriate, but it was something I didn’t care to explain or justify, there was a voracious, silent energy running between us, and to me, the secrets I’ve kept from the world, all the events that have nurtured me into such a dark person, it was a side I didn’t need to keep, the beast I sought to hid was to her a curious animal that for some reason, deserved affection.
Her world was not something I wanted to cross over, she was infatuated with Asian culture, how people in Japan were so self-sufficient and their culture a microcosm protected by all that is Fish & Chips and Starbucks, and of course I appreciated this, but it was a bizarre place outside the snowglobe that is KL, she read books that began with words before graduating into comics and symbols and things like this confounded me, I was attracted to things that were simple and poetry that didn’t trick you with their mutating structures, or large, intimidating words and this was how I began to write, my prose took a conversational approach, what I couldn’t communicate as I was expected to, was nude in what I wrote, and she took the time to read it, once in a while insisting that I read small pieces to her, I’d read aloud from my notebook and peer up to see her eyes wide and enamored, it was the first time I could captivate someone so completely, without even trying.
And like a lot of young lovers, we took to each other mostly for the wrong reasons, both of us still raw, but later we became good friends, she’s still an artist and what you don’t see portrayed on the canvas is apparent on her being, long white legs and a mild glow about her face, a presence that is warm and in sync with your implacable chaos, but to me she was a brief supernova of light and inspiration, that feeling of bliss that comes right before a certain heartbreak.