Wednesday, March 5, 2008

The Couple at Cape Town

In queue, with a
pair of bags housing
my portable life and my
windows turned beyond,
I wait, encapsulated by
my fellows of blood and journey.

Fluorescent, the putrid
taste of expected formality
settles upon me as I
chafe about chafing under
the tiredness of warmth,
buffeted by harsh jets of
air and ambiance.

Then apart from me
There whispers a soft wailing,
A swan's tears into the winds,
Silence and resolute exhaustion
Greeting that final realization
Of Farewell.

And as under the harsh
normalcy of stinking light
the epic of anguish unfolds,
I stare, agape and
sickeningly proud;
As beauty sunders
The Homely,
These clipp'd Wings
Illuminate the sky
- with Color,
rich and pure.

As I later ascend
into my home amidst the clouds,
I am still washed in purity

Benjamin Finkel,
March 5, 2008

That is a powerful memory, right there. We were in Cape Town, as a family, last summer. When we were at the airport heading to Windhoek waiting to go through security, Aaron and I noticed a very beautiful couple who were separating from each other, the man leaving on our flight and the woman staying behind. There was an anguish in both of them that, as you can see, still has an effect on me. The thing was, both of them were so dignified - the woman's tears were quiet, the longing, regret, and fear in her eyes so pure and powerful; the man's silence was almost comforting in its conformity to the needs of the situation, his feigned certainty so convincing. Even as I saw love - obvious, true, and undoubted love - get torn apart, I felt (beside the pity) an asymmetric comfort; to me, the situation proved that love is possible, and can exceed even my highest expectations.

Evidence like that is hard to come by. The rest of the trip was, of course, brilliant, and I expect to write about other memories at some point. But seeing as thoughts on love, relationships, and trust have been sieging my mind recently, I felt that writing this now would give me a good perspective on things. I feel it has.

What's interesting, though, is that afterwards, Aaron asked me, "So what did you think of that little soap opera back there?" My quiet rage had to be stilled as I explained to him my thoughts on the event. Even when we are so alike, out differences can be staggering.


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