Outlandish love

“I loved the bad in you before your perfection”

أحببت السوء فيك قبل الكمال

—  Nizar Qabbani
Perfection is an appealing illusion because it fools us into thinking that our fantasy world is real. It’s a figment of deception.
I was asked: “Why don’t you get marry? “

I fell silent. It was a gut feeling, my reason, and I had to go into myself and scrap together words to dress this gut feeling. Why didn’t I marry the dozens of suitors that have come and gone? Why did I barely look up from where I was sat in an island of books and quotes?

I didn’t exactly know but when I opened my mouth to answer, the words somehow had magically lined up

“Because I haven’t seen anyone brave enough to show me their bad side.”
Her face grimacing in utter confusion. You said what? You want someone bad?
Her half-opened mouth betrayed the bewilderment that my outlandish statement caused.
Knowing what she was going to say, I continued:
” What I mean is, perfection doesn’t exist in humans. So when someone portrays perfection, they are hiding behind a facade and I will never truly know their true self. And I can’t stand loving someone who will never be able to reciprocate my depth. But when someone forgoes the facade and shows up with flaws and all, there’s more to it than public perception. It shows their commitment to honesty. And I know that I can rely on such a person, for life.” 

She leaned back, relaxed and mouth agape in wonder. Her eyes seemed distant yet transfixed, as if last night’s dream was gradually coming back to her and she was focusing hard to remember what she had forgotten.
Her eyes came wandering back to meet mine and she smiled, half-chuckling
“You’re such a weirdo, you know that? That’s why you’re not married ! “

I burst into laughter.

” I need to go back to my galaxy. You earthlings are so hostile” I quipped back. There was a standing joke that I was an alien, and deep inside I truly felt like one.

As we calmed down from the laughter attack, I noticed a poignant look on her face as she twirled her wedding ring around  her finger, and I knew. I knew why she had momentarily gone into her mind earlier; she knew she had married a facade, an empty shell- handsome,funny- but empty nonetheless. She wasn’t ready to face that , so it was easier to reject my thoughts out of hand. Truth can be awfully inconvenient, don’t it?


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