On Subtle Shades of Sadness


I wonder whether you might sense my sadness. I’m sure you must, at times. I wonder more whether you might perceive the dark pools of my eyes and think me jealous—jealous of you because you are young, or beautiful, or filled with a naiveté that was lost to me long ago.

I wonder what you might perceive; and yet, I am confident in that which you do not. I bear a certainty bred of experience that you cannot hope to fathom my feelings; that you do not yet possess the capacity to understand, much less to empathize with a jealousy bred of something much more profound than rounded breasts, or youthful figures; that you cannot yet conceive of an envy fed by the recognition of hope, of possibility, of an infinite array of futures which have yet to unfold.

I am sad, but my sadness is of that rare, rich variety that breeds subtle, knowing smiles. I am jealous, but my jealousy is that of a worn and weary traveler arriving home just in time to bid farewell to others—to those who are only now departing on paths that he never had the chance to walk.

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