Friday, April 22, 2011

epistle #2: ophelia

[another letter i'll never send...]

dear ophelia:

it's not like i didn't try. i did, more than you could ever have known. i mean, i felt like i owed it to you not to give up. loyalty was something you prized above all else, and i understand that better than most. but at some point, it's just not worth it. there came a point when you were just not there anymore. and it's not like i begrudge you the stressors in your life. again, no one else understands what it's like to watch your mother slip away from you, while you stand powerless to do anything, like i do. but instead of accepting my hand, you slapped it away.

'course, the distance started long before this, i guess. you never really forgave me for getting out, for having the courage you never could have. you stuck it out, and on some levels it was easy for you. we suffered the same slings and arrows there, you and i. and at first, we managed it the same way - as destructively as possible. but i woke up. i smacked myself into a form of reality and got over the troubles. you, on the other hand, got addicted to the darkness. patton oswalt said, there's a chilly thrill in moving with the herd while quietly being tuned in to something dark, complicated and unknown. we both fell for the seduction of depression as glamour. but the difference between us is, i realized that it was a glamour, in the old witchcraft sense of the word. y'know, a swindle, a lie, a joke. there's nothing sexy or special about being miserable.

but i could even deal with that. i could understand that. it was the paranoid delusion that pushed me over the edge. you just flat-out lost touch with reality. every small slight became a gigantic cosmic sign that THEY were out to get you, eh? you just could not see what you'd become. i remember the last time i saw you, how happy i was and how… miserable, i guess, you were. it was so hard to watch. i tried to stay with you, be your friend. hell, you stood up for me when i married the ex. the three of us were so melded together. but you sliced us off like a moldy patch when you felt "betrayed" by us.

and what was our crime? to indicate to you that you lived in a world that did not exist. i think my final sin against you was to root for a different baseball team. it's like that old twilight zone where the embittered old movie star, once a young ingenue but now well past her prime, was so trapped in her reverie that she actually willed her delusion to exist. she literally ascended into the supposed heaven of her former glory, abandoning those "killjoys" who kept trying to tether her to the painful ways of the real world. if it were possible, you would do that in a heartbeat, i know.

but you've done the next best thing, haven't you? you just cast people aside, into perdition, when they violate your unspoken code. and if that's the way you want it, that's the way you'll get it. you kinda hurt me. but really, the reason i'm sad to see you fade into the mists of my past is that it didn't have to happen this way. you didn't have to wade into that water, letting the weight of your finery drag you into the depths. but you were too far gone, too deep into your own vision. so here i sit, waving my hands, watching you drown.

i tried to help. but i can't work miracles. goodbye, ophelia.


  1. Maybe it is a fate tied to her name... Ophelia is the name of my bird. I named her Ophelia because she is a drama queen, like the princess who lost her mind when her lover killed her father and throw herself into a river and drowned. But that is Shakespeare so it is supposed to be drama.

    I am sorry about your friend, I think breaking up with a friend may be even harder than with a partner, even if your sanity demands it. Hugs.

  2. Hmmm... 'Ophelia' soujnds like my ex wife... I loved her so, but she just wouldn't let me. I tried to be there to alleviate her madness, but she wouldn't let me.

    Sometimes we have to let someone like this go just for our own survival...


  3. I think it's really healthy that you're writing these letters. Let it all out! And here's to hoping this doesn't happen to you ever again.


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