I was told that love is something that

comes knocking, and is not something you can look for.

[this post is available in audio form at this link.]

And they also say that love is something that will bypass my head and knock straight on my heart – so this must mean that whatever emotion it is that knocks on my temple is not it.

I am not looking for an overbearing emotion that floods me or absconds with my rationality, I think I would loathe that.

I should hope that love is not a war where there are winners and losers.

If there is something that I can help with, I should like you to part your lips and say it so clearly that I reply as crisply.

But I am looking for something close to love – a fondness and affection that I could live for the rest of life with; I confess I am not too picky on this front.

But since I do not ‘need’, I will not ‘lose’ and I will not accept losing in any circumstance.

Is that as close to a confession as I might give? Well, I guess this is what it is, insecurity, rather than true apathy. Not a lie, but not true either.

I woke up one day and dreaming: there it was, love, that had already taken root in my heart like a rambutan tree sprouting from the crown of my head.

But I cannot promise you love, because this is not what I feel at all. There is no emotion there and there is nothing taking root.

There is only the threat that someday I will run out of patience and I will destroy you. And more than I am afraid of love, I am afraid of that.

I do not mean for this to hang over your head, but I hope to point you to the executioner’s blade.

The tree rests on our temple, bunches of fruit dipping low. The sweetness that beckons, the leaves descending down upon me.

There can be two tigers on this mountain, I do not mind it.

But, otherwise, there shall be none.

We are not good with this emotion that rattles my ribcage because it is cold. Her hand is warm to me. As is his palm, clapping against mine.

But again, this is not love, and we are not seeking it either. Because there is nothing more I need, and nothing I want from you.

I didn’t mean nothing, as in, I am okay with everything. I mean that I don’t want it.

It is unkind to say now at this point that I am uncomfortable since I’ve felt that way since you started this. But it is more unkind to know that you are not reading this and that I continue in my dealings with you, trying to show you in the simplest of ways that I am –

that I am

not what you are looking for and that you are not what I am looking for.
(that I cannot be what you are looking for when you do not even know what you are looking at)

I tried harder to convince the

other person,

more than I tried to convince myself.

I have come out all the poorer for it,

not because I had nothing to gain,

or that I had lost anything.

But this protracted process has come with

attendant problems,
attendant people,

aborted attempts
exasperating exchanges

that I am now trying to untangle.

It is now the end of the month. We already agreed that it was easier that if I rejected you, and I already told you clearly that I don’t expect these feelings to change.

And, sincerely, I am trying to treat you normally. You are right, in those two months I was not myself around you – in fact I treated you like glass because I was afraid.

But you continue to treat me abnormally: I can’t really deal with your messages in a normal manner, because none of my friends will ever talk to me like this.

Or I am lying, some of them do, but it doesn’t seem strange for them to ask me these things because I know why they are asking.

The more I treat you normally, the more differently you react and I must tell you that this is slowly beginning to alarm me.

So I cannot help but treat you like glass. How clear must I be if you are wearing your heart on your sleeve and I am just at a complete loss.

Right these are called making excuses.

I lied when I told you that because I feel nothing I can go back to treating you normally. There is nothing normal about our present relationship.

Because I feel nothing and I can feel that there is still your emotion (and I’m not blaming you for it, there’s nothing to blame) I cannot help but treat you like glass and hold you as far as politely possible.

Because I am afraid of whatever it is that you want and you are still hoping for. I know, how human it is to hope and to dream, but they told me that love is something that comes knocking and not something that can be found.

I have already tried for about two months to find something. And each time I come back to the same thought: won’t you fall out of this?

I want to grab your shoulders (which are much higher than mine) and shake some sense into you.

our world trundling along the multitudes of ‘you’,

constantly growing and changing.

And I, wandering along the coast

that moves with the moon’s waxing poetic,

Still, I dare wonder why you keep moving,

such that I can never find you.

Maybe Unlike Pluto has the right idea: our insides that are constantly changing which mean I might never really understand you; and you me.

But surely this is enough for now.

Before I realised it, or because we kept coming back to this, unable to let go of the emotion that wells up inside us, this post became long and disjointed and stilted.

Sincerely, if I could tell you these words, maybe you would understand the direction I’m coming from. Last night was the first clear window I got into the way you work, and that helps me.

I could moot about anything, even hamburgers, as long as the people are good. And good is my subjective evaluation. Because mooting is a process rather than an end state, and I think you would be aligned on that – for you to learn PIL, investments, commercial law, even ICSID. Those things that you said you wanted to learn, those are aligned with our moot, but they are not our moot. But it is your moot.

I want to moot of course, and I enjoy to some unknown extent. I don’t love it, but I like our team, and of course I definitely like the partner that I chose to do this with. You all are not our moot. But you all are my moot.

Ironically, as I keep finding, over and over, my need was for affiliation in this sphere. Maybe because I trust that a good team will lead to a good outcome, but more pressingly, I cannot live until November if our team is not good.

Power in a group context? What use would that be?

Achievement? Nothing is individual, what is the point of being better, or not being at fault? If we went down, we would all go down together.

I couldn’t imagine that this was my pre-dominant motive, not from any logical perspective, but somehow this seems to be the conclusion.

Strange. I thought that I could be concise and still convey enough of what I wanted to convey.

Here, more things I wish I could tell you before we meet again, but maybe that’s too much emotional information that you cannot use, will not use, have no use for, see no use for. (Strange. I have so much control, and control is so important to me, so why am I trying to amend you?)

I trust you. (Like I said, I trust you and I know based on the alignment of our goals that this emotion is well-founded.)

But sometimes it feels like you don’t trust us – and I’m not sure how else to tell you or convey to you how much that feeling hurts [me] and hurts [us].

Through your interactions with us, maybe if we play this game of trust for a little longer, you will realise that we can be trusted.

I must warn you that we are all different people and that we are not playing this game with only you, but between each of us. By the time you make your assessment, it may be too late – we will already have made our own decisions.

I am learning peacefulness.

I am learning fondness for all of us.

For the people who smile,

the people who turn curt,

the people who taper off into silence.

And yet, to learn these things, how aware

I am:

that my reaction drawing back and away

is something I have steadily come to

repress because I am afraid that if I don’t,

there will be no one else who will.

So, our team makes me into a strange person.

Over time I wonder if the person you get to know

up til November is us, or someone else


Maybe it is asking for a bit too much right now

and indeed, I am not prepared to gamble my sanity

for my comfort.

So I am not myself. I am a collection of skills and words,

work and patience, soothing, intervening.

But that is not me – not the me who is human and who is

also hurt by those words, who wants badly, to quietly leave

the room.

I am a teammate, a robot or a mirror, trying

my best to soften those words.

The me that you know, but I don’t want to be all the time.

I do it only enough so I can go back to being my normal self.

So actually, this is not strange, really. I don’t trust you in this aspect and we don’t trust ourselves in this aspect.

It must be the recognition that if you don’t concede at least a little, we are certain that we will falter. Maybe not first, maybe not last, I do not claim to speak definitely of the rest, but I am issuing my clarion call – a plea.

I will falter.

It is now July. If I do not let go of these words now, I may have to wait for next April or May. For the first you, I am easing up slowly, since we have gone back to interaction levels that pre-date this whole situation. Maybe that is the only kind of normalcy that I am okay with.

And for the second you, please let today be a good day.

How stressful it is – and the source of stress is all of us. I am still trying to learn peacefulness, learning to trust everyone else, at least a bit more.


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