Snippet Series #9: Walang Utang sa Panliligaw

Another piece that mirrors frustration. At the end of the day, every man is his own, an Infinite Other.


“But I gave her everything,” he mourned, weeping.

“Darling, she never asked.”


I think the most painful thing about this that I have to remember is this: wala kang utang sa’kin.

I have no rights over you. I do not own you. I do not control you. I cannot make you think what I think or feel what I feel. I cannot make you want what I want or dream what I dream or find joy in the things that I find joy in.

You and I are irrevocably different. I am day and you are night. I am sky and you are ocean. I am steely reason and you are virile passion. And yet as the sun chases after the moon so do I chase after you. And as the sun never catches her, so I never will.

You are elusive, like sand. A contradictory truth, like a paradox. Proud, and stubborn, like me.

At first glance, it would appear that I should have the upper hand. I’m smarter, wiser, kinder, classier, better looking, funnier, more charming, more skilled, more popular, more influential, wealthier. And yet, you remain, frustratingly, one step ahead of me.

I will not deny it, I have tried all my tricks. I have practically courted you with words and acts and show. I have listened and swallowed my pride and wagered my time and expanded my understanding. I have been kind and forgiving and considerate and generous. I have allowed you into the bounty of what I own and into the bounty of my soul. Regardless. I cannot make you bend.

It would have been better if you tried to win me as well. If you had insisted, if you had taken up arms and made demands. I know you would not have been able to make me bend. But that’s not how it worked. You had no such desire. And now you have all hold over me.

I give. And yet you owe me nothing because you never asked. And you never asked because you never cared.

And so you forever remain outside of my reach. Unconquerable.

And it makes me feel powerless. It makes me wonder if everything is chance. I hardly try, and everything is given to me. The one thing I have invested everything in earns me nothing.

And you don’t even realize it. And it doesn’t even matter. It is one thing to fail, and another never to even be recognized.

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