0019 | absence

Absence requires us to search for a part of ourselves, to rediscover something which is missing, something detached or lost within us, once connected to something outside. Absence is that state of something not being in the space to which it belongs. It is a tie that has been unfastened or cut away. Absence lurks and we’re not always aware of how susceptible we are: as precarious as a string knotted loosely to the neck of a balloon. Absence is the wretched creation of the head which can’t decide whether to console or torture the heart. It is a thing which replaces.¬†Absence can plummet following a moment of carelessness, neglect or spite, as we watch the thing that we love leave our grasp. A balloon becoming smaller and smaller and smaller against the sky.

Reader Comments

  1. I will never look at the word “absence” in the same way again. Your lovely post is like a poem.”Can’t decide whether to console or torture the heart.” Doesn’t get any better than that!

  2. “Absence requires us to search for a part of ourselves, to rediscover something which is missing, something detached or lost within us…”
    I enjoyed this line, it felt very true. And that’s always a big part of pieces that I enjoy, truth. Hemingway once said, “…all stories must be heroic and true, when they are true they are heroic.” Well, maybe he didn’t say that. I’m not sure. Maybe I’m getting Hemingway from that Woody Allen movie mixed up, anyway, I liked this piece. =)
    Cheers!

  3. You’ve tortured me a little with this fragment, Matt. I’ve felt the presence of absence this week, and your words have sliced it a little deeper. But that, of course, is the beauty of the best writing.

  4. You should try your hand at poetry Matt. I think you have a sense of rhythm that feels like it wants to break free of prose and would enjoy being let loose on a poem.

  5. Part of the power of this piece is that it set me thinking…
    I honestly feel that there is something positive and hopeful about absence – it’s not the same as loss, and for me, implies a much anticipated and strengthening reunion in the future. Thanks Matt – well written as ever.

  6. OpinionsToGo:
    Joanne, thank you, thank you.

    Chantel:
    Thanks, and yes, beautifully put. It’s all of those things.

    Sydney:
    Thanks, and glad you liked this one, I think you and I look for the same things in what we read.

    Kavey:
    Lovely to get your comment; I thought of you as I posted.

    Charlie:
    Sorry to read that, but thank you for such a generous comment.

    Philip:
    Thanks, and I can see what you mean. In truth, I don’t really know enough about the boundaries between each form to make the distinction between one or the other. Rhythm is one of the things which I’m most acutely aware of as I write, so it pleases me that you have an ear for that.

    Sharon:
    Thanks. I’d agree wholeheartedly with that, and I hope that’s implicit in the text. The piece begins with the line about searching and ends with the object diminishing in size, but not yet lost.

  7. beautiful matt, sometimes absence has a hollow feel to it and other times a deafening silence but this week it has allowed me a glimpse off myself that was often taken up by other distractions.

    oh matt i am so thankful that you share with us.

  8. Absence also makes the heart grow fonder! Good to see you’re back online. I look forward to reading #15-#19 over the next couple of evenings.

  9. Nadia:
    I’m more grateful still that you read and leave your own little footnotes. Thank you.

    David:
    Glad you enjoyed. Thank you.

    Charles:
    Welcome back to you too, my friend. A subject we both feel an affinity for. Miss you.

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