Four-Word Breaking

A story by Sofia Sears

artwork by Peter


disintegration: the process of coming to pieces


coming to pieces


I write these words when the world is cold and quiet. I write this definition, plainly, straightforwardly, no trembling hands, no hesitance. Once upon a time I would’ve written about your lips and how uncanny it was that they fit impeccably when they touched mine. Once upon a time I would’ve been collapsing into uncontrollable fits of priceless, effortless giggles, cheeks rosy red and face warm with a honeydew heat. I would think of you and my fingers would ache as I wrote in my notebook, ache with a feverish, bumbling desire to touch you, graze your cheek, your lips. The world is quiet now, and I cannot find a flushing of the cheeks, or a childish bout of laughter to placate my hollow hell. Do you ever think of me? Because I do, I think of you, often, too often, always. I am disintegrating, see, I am coming to pieces.



despondency: a state of low spirits caused by loss of hope or courage


I write with swollen fingers that crumble with the weight of the meaning. I am despondent, indeed, here in this godforsaken room, this unbearable cave of missing, missing, always. The coffee spilled carelessly across the lily-pad duvet, but do I care? I do not, I cannot. We’ve been here before, caffeine-fueled nights of messy, spectacular ideas, redness, cherry redness, vivacious in our skin, hands on each other. I fell into you; you fell into me. We happened, inexorably, hopelessly. I love you in a place where there is no space or time. I sang to you and it hurts so much now to hear that goddamn song, incises my very being with a tactful devastation. I am in a state of low spirits caused by a loss of hope or courage, and too bad, too bad.



half: either of two equal or corresponding parts into which something is or can be divided


A divine thread, meticulous, teetering perpetually between strength and weakness, connected us. There were two, there were two of us without belief that there would ever, ever be solely one. String raws with time and filth settles upon the fine material. Filthy. An accumulation of filth, built gradually and tirelessly, created something unfixable. I miss you, I do. It’s straightforward and it’s not all too metaphorical, but there exists no other way to say it. I am half. Half an orange discarded upon the sidewalk by some restless, clumsy child with sticky fingers and knobby knees. Half a heartbeat; the lub, patiently awaiting the dub. I am half, fine thorns lacking a rose to cling to. I am half. You malicious surgeon. You cut me in half with blind eyes and a shrug. Desensitized to halves, to the creation of halves. To you, incisions are pieces of fine art, beauty exists through them, but they’re lifeless, meaningless. You cut me in half and yet you’re a whole. What fairness exists?



drained: cause the water or other liquid in (something) to run out, leaving it empty, dry, or drier.


A limit exists in love. Have you ever taken the time to consider this abstract idea? A limit exists in love. A limit defines humanity, we are no gods, possess no unparalleled influence, as much as we try to believe. We are no gods and never will be. We destroy and ruin and break and we fall. We simultaneously engage in an act of doublethink, we love and hope and dream and rise. This rise is limited. The fall is not. No glory, no inconceivable power, no happiness can ever turn us into the higher power. We believe in a god that cannot exist. We are alone, and our energy, our hope, our insatiable desire for beauty, for glory, will never truly be fully fulfilled. We become drained too easily. Giving up is what we are, but no shame shall come for this. We are weak and strong and mighty and idiotic. I believe in us and I believed in you but I am drained and exhausted. I have no glory left to find. You took it. I wish not for salvation, but instead, for a filling-up of self. I want to be full again. We can do this, but I can’t do it with you. You’ve drained my cup and I won’t drink from your poisoned holy water again. We rise, and we can do it together, again and again, and we will. We fall too many times to think of and we rise intermittently. The one new truth is this: I can rise alone.






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