A Fractured Friendship

On misconstrued overtures and thwarted friendships

It all began to seem like a mirage,
One built only in my head at that;
When I realized the error of my ways
Inadvertent yet strangely impactful,
All of it now flashed back as a montage,
Cleared by hindsight
Sobered by new-found awareness.

Some of our ‘conversations’ seemed strangely one-sided,
Not so much now.
Most answers stilted and sarcastic,
Their tone anything but friendly;
A lot of my ‘good cheer’, seemed unanswered;
A lot of replies bore the forced conviviality
Of people who see each other every day, but don’t always want to.

I relied on your advice, your judgements, your good sense,
Always forthcoming, solid and steady;
I revealed to you facets not many know,
Voiced my uncertainties, gave vent to a few fears,
All whilst taking it for granted;
Not deliberately yet undeniably
I breached a barrier and burnt a bridge
Yet, oblivious to it all, I meandered along,
Along curves and contours that seemed
Only the slightest bit unusual, for what should have been
A seemingly normal friendship.

Another casual question, a seemingly insignificant topic
Broached over just another mundane conversation,
Was all it took to shatter this ‘friendly’ façade,
A façade built on your hesitation and my oblivion;
Anger simmering over trivialities,
Discomfort borne under the guise of outward cordiality,
Gushed through, repressed and redoubled;
I felt the force of your fury,
Enlightening yet unsettling,
Overwhelming in the moment,
Yet, oddly calming;
Those trivialities I’d brushed past,
Niggling voices warning me to be more observant,
Resounded in my now-ringing ears.

Valiantly yet in vain,
I tried to salvage the little I could;
Blindsided by hope,
Clinging onto its last vestiges
Naively optimistic with just a touch o’ wariness,
The deep crevice that had sprung between us
Seemed to me a wee fissure,
One that heals indelibly,
Leaving but the slightest of scars.

We still cross paths often,
Too often to forget this interlude,
Yet not oft enough to see beyond it;
I hoped I’d be forgiven,
Truly, beyond the banal responses to my apologies;
Hoped we’d reclaim common territory
With shared interests and the few pleasant memories;
But as the days pass and this rift deepens,
My hopes are rendered futile and I’m convinced:
All we had was a fractured friendship
Built on misconstrued overtures and illusory connections…

Written on October 3, 2019