A few shoe cartons of a lifetime’s worth

Mercilessly tucked in between the red backs of my Tin Tin comics, the binders filled with my old drawings and the random little titbits I gathered throughout life, are a few plain-looking shoe cartons. It was a long time since they contained shoes. Instead, they have become museums of sorts. Or rather they are like those sad storage facilities for objects their owners no longer want to see, but don’t have the heart to get rid of. 

Each box contains a particular scene from my life. Playing a sick role as a window into a part of soul that died a long time ago: A time in school, a place I used to live, a failed relationships, a dream I woke up from.

I could exaggerate and claim that browsing the content is like eating ice cream with cyanide, where the cold pleasure numbs the taste of bitter almonds.  It would be right up my alley to exaggerate in favour of enhancing the artistic expression, but the truth is that I feel very little sentiment looking through their content. My feelings are more on an intellectual side. The boxes are the undeniable truth that nothing lasts forever. Nothing lasts even for a little while. Life is continuously ever-changing.

It is alien to see a younger me staring back from the company of people who today could not be described as anything but strangers. It is awkward to browse through my old thoughts written in small, black journals. Sometimes I am surprised at their sagacity but most of the time appalled by the naivety of my younger self. However, it is the seemingly never-ending stream of postcards and love letters written by people who I don’t even know if they are still alive, that is the most absurd of the trip down memory lane: knowing that I must have written just as many back. Eternalised on paper is affection, desires, snippets of heart and soul. I can’t help but wonder if my responses are tucked into oversized envelops, shoe cartons and hidden away on some attic somewhere; my feelings as alien to their recipients as they would be to me or if the words are as thrown away and destroyed as their sentiments…

Weighing like a stone around my ankles, while sinking, is: what does perseverance mean if ever-changing is the only truth?

It was a long time since I made a new shoe box. Still, past feelings linger on occasion as a persistent virus. But I care significantly less than my younger self and I am cruel to a hopeless case meaning that the few memories that leech onto objects are thrown out with them. I really can’t judge if this is liberation or damnation. I guess it does not really matter, if ever-changing is the only truth, the answer to this should also change. A new day dawns.

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