Sunday, February 25, 2007

Heartbreak/Ineffable Fandom

Vukovar 1991

Laying in the dark, Luka Kovac listened to the sounds in the hospital hallway just on the other side of the closed door, he should be sleeping, but that like many things in his life was something that no longer came easily to him.  Even with working shifts of ten, twelve, fourteen hours, and sometimes even more,  he still found himself tossing and turning on the small cot by the time he found his way to it.

Once a storage place for linens and cleaning supplies the small, cramped room was now home for Luka and two other medical students.  Men who like him, no longer had anywhere else to go. Shelves that had once held linens and cleaning supplies had been removed, replaced by a single cot, the only source of comfort they would find.

It wasn't as if any of the three minded, the losses they had suffered had stripped them of any desire for reminders of what their lives once had been.  The room was a place to sleep, nothing more, and many days even that was impossible to find.

So, again, as was the case on far too many nights, or days, he lay awake, listening to those outside, and wondering if he would ever find his way past this.  He'd forgotten what it was like to smile, what it was like to be happy.  Ever since he had laid his wife and children to rest on that snowy wintry morning he had known only grief, only heartbreak and there was no reason to think it would ever be any different. He had lost his family, his home, his life, and with them all their hopes and dreams for the future were gone as well.  He had survived, as had so many others like him, in body alone, no more then a shell of the man he had been, and he was afraid he would never know anything else.

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