Thursday, December 13, 2012

My Friend William

I have a friend we all know by William. He's far gone from this world but his words live on through time.

He writes these awesome plays and I had the opportunity to read one of his famous works. I was frowning halfway through the story; when I finished, I set my copy down and sat quietly. He tapped me on the shoulder and asked me what's wrong.

"Do you want me to be totally honest?"

He nods.

"Sorry old man, but I didn't like it. Of course, I love how it's written... but story-wise, I'm not fond of it."

He nods understandably though. I liked that, so I took a deep breath and braved on.

"Why did you have to do that? Why do you have to instill in the minds of people that having a tragic love can be one of the best things in the world? Why do you have to make such an effort to help people feel better through this?"

He inclined his head, his ear touching the starched ruffle around his neck, but remained silent. I felt the fight going out of me and I look down to my hand still holding his book, my index finger serving as a bookmark to the final page of the final scene of death and supposed love.

"I... I just think you didn't have to go that far to prove your point..."

I could feel his curious gaze on me but I kept my eyes down, looking at the words he had written and reading them again and again, thinking that maybe through this I could read him as well and finally understand a little bit better.

"Romeo and Juliet's ending to their story... maybe I just can't understand the kind of love they had. I'm happy that love conquers all--even death--but do they really have to go that far? If love was such a beautiful thing, why do they have to die for it? They loved--love--each other so much... why do they have to be 'star-cross'd lovers'?

"I never understood why people wanted their love stories to be like Romeo and Juliet. Didn't they die at the end because they though the other was gone to them forever? Does one have to leave for good to realize the intensity of their feelings for a person?"

He prodded my arm gently with his elbow and I smile at the rough fabric of his sleeve. Maybe I am just being grumpy over everything.

And we were both silent, until I sigh and shrug my shoulders.

"No offense Mr. Shakespeare--William--,  but if ever I should be lucky enough to have my own love story, I don't want it to be like Romeo and Juliet."

He raises an eyebrow, a question on his eyes.

"I don't want to love the person I love like that. I wouldn't want a person to lose himself over me either. Being forgotten when you are gone is a sad and scary concept, but I wouldn't want the person I love to follow me to my death. I want him to share his existence to the world, so the world would know why I loved--love--this person.  wouldn't want him to miss the people he should have met, the experiences he would have had, the scenes he would have seen. Because I would love the world to know the beauty of love. It doesn't have to be tragic to be beautiful.

It just is."

I looked around and I was alone. 

"Thanks for listening, old man," I whispered to myself.

And I stretch my arms over my head and set out to make my own story.

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