Memories Of A Lost Love
Eyes closed, he let himself get carried away by the music. He’d always enjoyed classical. The collective efforts of dozens of instruments playing in perfect synchronization drew him in more than voices ever could. There was a mystical attribute to the way inanimate objects could be used to produce sound and the way a group of them could, in the right hands, generate such breathtaking music. All of it seemed to be beyond comprehension without an understanding of the science behind it all, and still felt like magic when the secrets behind their workings were finally revealed.
Classical music was a treasure. A treasure capable of enchanting all its listeners, charming them regardless of their ages. A treasure that surprisingly required the work of an entire stage of men to produce, but also fundamentally required the presence of inanimate objects. Even the thought of how it all worked was enough to amaze him.
Without realizing he found himself lifting to his feet and letting the music draw him in. His body slowly swayed, carried by the rhythm of the piece. A grin formed on his lips, as the notes guided him toward a familiar bliss. A sense of peace washed over him with the gently beckoning melody. It was as if the collective strings behind his speakers stole away his stress, silently calming him.
Resting his face against the back of his hand, he closed his eyes, letting himself get lost in the tune. Suddenly a sense of overwhelming sadness panged him, as images of her flooded his mind. Like the music, she was beautiful. And, now she was gone.
He could still see the moment that she happily picked up the CD case. It had been his recommendation to her. He could still hear her laughter in the air. He opened his eyes, reaching out to her transparent silhouette. She was gone. Just like that.
He should’ve given it to her at some other time, some other place, perhaps things wouldn’t have turned out this way. Perhaps, she would’ve lived if he hadn’t given her the disk just before her drive home. Tears welled in his eyes. Knowing her, he should’ve expected that she wouldn’t be able to wait. knowing her, he should’ve expected her to listen in the car, unwilling to wait even a moment longer.
He should’ve known. He should’ve waited. He should’ve taken the news and studies more seriously. He buried his face into his arms. He shouldn’t have been so shocked when the police found the disc in her CD player.
Despite the calmness of the strings playing in the background, his emotions hit him like a truck. She was gone, and it was all his fault. All his fault…
He felt tears stain his sleeves, but none of that mattered. It wouldn’t bring her back. Nothing would. He knew better than anyone else. Being a surgeon in the emergency room that night… being one of the last few trying to resuscitate her that night… he should know better than anyone else.
He saw her condition. He should’ve known… She was beyond help. Still, he couldn’t help but try. He knew what it meant when a patient came in like that… When they come from an accident where they were found without seatbelts. He should’ve known. So, why did it still hurt so much? Why did the result shock him so? Why did he hope for a different result? Why was he so disappointed by his failure? Why, when he had seen it coming all along? Why?
If only, he hadn’t recommended the piece to her. If only, he hadn’t given her the CD that day. So many if onlys, so many possibilities that he would never have an answer to, now that she was gone.
A hand rested over his shoulder. He straightened, letting out a sigh. It’d already been five years, but it still occasionally comes back to him. The pain. The regret. The sadness.
But he also knew that the past was the past. There was little he could do to change it. He turned, placing a hand over hers as he acknowledged his wife’s knowing smile. She, too, had suffered that night. He let out a sigh, pushing those memories aside. She worked so hard to move on. He couldn’t let himself drag her down.
Taking her hand, he stood and walked over to the radio. Pressing the off button, and abruptly cutting off the music, he turned to her and smiled. A smile of shared pain and shared understanding. She was right. It was time to move on.
This story was inspired by a writing prompt from the “Microcosm” Publication.
pick your favourite or least hated song from either of … genres [Psychedelic Rock or Classical] and write a story that it inspires.
Song of Choice: Bach’s Air by Nemanja Radulović & Double Sens
Some additional resources and references