Blood-and-Guts Love Letter


“Boxing and bullfighting are elevated above other sports because of the blood that is in them.”

–       Ernest Hemingway (paraphrased from Death in the Afternoon).

 I have posted a few love letters on here over time. I was taken with the idea when I heard about ‘The Love Letters of Great Men’, courtesy of Carrie Bradshaw in ‘Sex and the City’. Let’s face it; we watch for blood. It’s not just ghoulish curiosity; it’s also for catharsis. And if you’ve been reading this blog for a while, you know that I don’t give a fuck about anything that isn’t bloody.

The following is presented for your delectation.    

Hi S,

I thought I’d send you a progress letter as to where I’m at. I think of you a lot, at particular times. I thought you might like to know.

I am really struggling to recover from my break up with J. I think I understand where it went wrong, but I find it difficult to accept. I did absolutely everything I could, and I believe that the reasons it foundered were beyond my influence or control.

It isn’t that I didn’t do anything wrong; I did plenty and did my utmost to take responsibility and redress it. It is a truly horrible thing to see that you are responsible for the pain of someone you love.

I am trying to stay entirely permeable to the experience and the pain. My love for her was the greatest thing to come out of me; to dismiss it is to lose what is best in me. I also feel that if I suffer its full extent, then I will be redeemed for the failure, and will also learn how to prevent something from going bad in future.

I do not believe I am suffering the concomitant problems that lurk behind the loss of true, profound love; for example, it hasn’t affected my self-esteem (I know you’re laughing at that one).

I feel like I won some amazing prize with a mansion and a car and everything and just as I had moved in, someone from a government agency came around and showed me undeniable proof that I didn’t win at all. And I have to give it all up and move out.

I even have regrets as a result of my relationship with her. I have very, very few regrets – about anything – and it alarms me to feel them. It feels desperately unjust that things came down the way they did.

And it is her way to turn her back on her past and discard it. I never throw away anything or anyone I have loved and it is agony to know that she has cast me away and created a crude, yet effective series of channels to cleanse her of responsibility.

Sometimes I find myself so upset I can be looking out a window streaked with rain and discover that I am crying. And this is when I think of you.

I am not sure how the brain works, but there was something about my relationship with you that transcended all the relationships I have ever had. I essentially close myself to people so the seams and weaknesses are concealed. But you had full access to all of me and the fact that I cannot have a relationship with you anymore is possibly my greatest loss to date.

You were always ‘there’; lonely Christmases and late at night and whenever else. At some of those times, you said things that have stayed in my blood like mercury. One was that I could never disappoint you, and the other was that you would always be there for me, no matter what.

I instinctively believed you, in the same way I fell so deeply in love with J. And it seems I was wrong about both. I am currently back at the shrink, trying to figure out why I fell so deeply in love with her. What does such a decision, such instincts, say about me as a person?

I wonder about the way I instinctively placed my trust in you.


I don’t know if you know anything about deer hunting, but some shooters will walk miles into the forest and create intricate blinds in trees and on the ground for concealing themselves. They climb into these things and hide for days, sometimes weeks at a time; shitting in a bag, waiting for a deer to emerge.

Often they will kill it with a telescopic rifle over such a distance that the animal will be struck by the bullet before the sound. Sometimes, the deer will run when the sound reaches it with the projectile already lodged in its heart.

Right now, I am running. I wonder if, when I stop, I will be dead.


One Response to “Blood-and-Guts Love Letter”

  1. The pain, the pain…..

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