“Till death do us apart”
Rang out bouncing off the walls of the church, lingering even so, as the bride and the groom embraced love with their lips. He was a soldier, she is a cardiac surgeon.
Because a year later, a bullet from across the border hit his heart and stopped hers. It’s been 30 years since then. She has kicked more than a thousand hearts back to life but hers remained unmoved, lifeless and searingly quiet. She had become achlamydeous without his touch, without his sight.
Love, in all its eloquence, has the power to wilt the strongest of trees and the pulchritude to bloom the weakest of buds in a place they are never expected to. It is the rainbow when people are looking for a silver lining. It is the rains when the greens yearn for a drop. It has the power much beyond our comprehension for its power lies the beauty of its mere existence.
She was all of 5 feet 4 inches tall, with a crown of curly hair and a body as svelte as God could’ve made a woman. Her skin coloured by the most exquisite mix of hues that was possible. Small, jet black eyes against a white more luminous than the day itself. A smile sitting in the creche of a pair of perfect cheek bones, and a gleam brighter than the stars.
He never thought, never imagined they would meet again after the first rendezvous, let alone being spellbound for life. Three and a quarter of a year since they met, she had plucked him out of the trenches of despondency, while he, he just liked to make her smile. It was this give and take in which they both got a new lease of life, a different dimension of vision, metamorphosis. Love.
They both complemented each other so well and were yet so similar. It was almost poetic, almost too perfect, too good to last.
The widowed doctor kept the picture of her soldier back on the shelf from where she had picked it up. The wedding bells still ringing in her ears every time she went to sleep. This was the last time she had to suffer thus.
Why is it that the greatest of love stories told, retold and remembered are always the ones that didn’t have a happily ever after? St. Valentine-Julia, Heer-Ranjha, Romeo-Juliet, you know the drill.
Maybe the answer is so simple that we choose to ignore it or rule it out. Maybe because true love isn’t something that is vanquished by the fragility of physical presence. It is in the souls, in things that are beyond the slavery of time and space, a keychain, a pillow, a mug, a smile, a kiss, a hug. Maybe we were always wrong.
Maybe it’s never “Till death do us apart.”
We will always be together, we are meant to be, now, forever.