Love's Threnody - [short story]

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Love's Threnody - [short story]

Postby Yas » 16 Feb 2005, 21:52

This is intended as a submission for the Writer's Club, but I can't seem to post though I am part of the Usergroup. Anyway, do read on. Feedback and comments highly appreciated, for all literature is open to criticism and it is only through criticism and analysis that writers develop and mould their art:

A threnody is a deeply grevious lamentation. Love's Threnody is an intimate exploration written in a combination of the first-person and external narration, giving a sense of immediacy, contributing toward the delicacy and sensitivity of the issue.


The two gleaming large eyes on his angelic three-year-old face were enough to make anyone love him. Blue ones too, like sapphires inset on black gold. He giggled as a gentle tickle rubbed over his soft skin, a delicate burst of flawless innocence. Almost emotional blackmail a cynic would say. Meet his parents – compulsively obsessed into their daily schedule that had been irresistibly interwoven into their lifestyle. Not the delicious irresistible, rather the forced one which imposed itself upon them – the long sixty hour weeks creasing and wrinkling their once young energetic faces. They were the typical 40 year olds on a typical limited budget, a typical hectic lifestyle, and your typical bills to pay.

Yet what was untypical was the ocean of love and dedication they showed, crashing and trying to battle your average childhood upbringing problems. For they truly loved their only son. And it wasn’t the kind of love which limits itself to feeding, sheltering, and of course without forgetting satisfying the angry demands for toys. It was a more profound dedication which established its roots in their ambitions and high hopes for him. It didn’t matter how hard they had to struggle. Nor did their tremendous sacrifices for the very basic pleasures of life matter. He would acquire the best education life offered. He would clothe himself in the best garments the high street sold. He would bathe in the delights and whatever made him happy. One day, his name would shine as a brilliant man. Their aspirations said it all - plant the bitter roots now and let him have the fruits, now and forever. It was all planned to perfection.

Or was it. “Then began a drama to which I was a witness from beginning to end.”* For as he grew up seemingly superficially a happy, satisfied child, while his parents toiled, life’s transient temptations began knocking at his door. It was the girl that he brought in one night for dinner. His blind love for her ignited the gradual tragic ending which was nonetheless becoming more and more evident as his demanding nature began to slowly subconsciously suppress his compassion and understanding of his parents difficulties. They say that marriages are made in heaven, but then again, so are thunder and lightning. Well, the sparks of love were certainly flying between the two, or so it apparently seemed, however to the parents it was immediately obvious as it would be to anyone else – she was in for the money. As an external observer, although indifferent of the touchy-feely aspect of the relationship, I could also ironically see that it was inclining towards a one-way “true love” relationship – him on the giving end, her on the receiving end, receiving more than just affection. I remind us all of the cliché of the day, “love can be magic, yet magic can be just an illusion”; unfortunately for him, this was just a saying, with no place in his life.

So they did the unimaginable. They actually tried to explain to him the truth that he was blinded from. But oh no, we can’t have Mr. “I-want-everything-in-life-my-way” listening to someone else now can we? Definitely not. And as the drift between parent and child grew even further, not helped one single bit by the “love of his life”, their affection became his desperation; parental bliss became a torturous nuisance. The relationship between parent and child was deteriorating. To make matters worse, the boy was totally out of control. Whenever they made a feeble attempt to impose their parental authority upon him, he would simply pretend not to hear. Not that he was under any significant restricting authority at anytime, anyhow, anyway. Their sweet angel who was promised to become a respected young man was now a family renegade.

Then one day the inevitable happened. It was a cold, dark, depressing winter’s day. He was seen leaving the house with merely a few suitcases in his hand. Not even turning to bid some farewell - if not out of genuine feeling then out of formality - he slammed the door behind him and speeded out of the drive. He never came back. Ever.
We now reflect, while acutely conscious of the stark reality underlying this fiction: the nature of humanity’s strongest bond. And we sympathize, for the gravity of the pathos for the parents is almost unimaginable. Perhaps we must empathize, and within ourselves feel the heartbreaking twinge, the shattering agony. They dedicated and sacrificed both financially and in all other ways possible for their son. And what did he do to repay the favour? He left them stranded ashore on an island with no aim in life to work towards. Probably left them to rot in a nursing home, to tell the stories of a child they once had. A child who abandoned and left them for his own desires. Their dreams shattered and the entire pivot of their life no longer present, life itself is rendered meaningless. Welcome to a glimpse of the human race.

*Quoted from “Something by Tolstoi” by Tennessee Williams.
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Postby Umm.aly » 16 Feb 2005, 22:10

wow! thts superb writing! high class english too :) ..
I think its very well structured; I like the way you introduced the characters in the beginning and.. it was all short and precise.. and the description of the emotions in the end were too good..
gr8 writing! thumbs up!

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