Story type: Essay
So many people imagine that their love is returned, that their innermost thoughts are appreciated and understood, when lips meet lips in that kiss which brings oblivion–that kiss which even the lowliest man and woman receive once in their lives as a benediction from Heaven. So many people imagine that they have found the Ideal Friend when they meet someone with an equal admiration for the poems of Robert Browning; or the Russian Ballet, or one who places the music of Debussy above the music of Wagner. But, I fear, they are often disappointed. For the longer I live, the more convinced I become that Love and Friendship are but “day dreams” of the “soul,”–that all we can ever possess in Life is the second-best of both. Nobody in Love, or in the first throes of a new friendship, will believe me, of course. Why should they? There are moments in both love and friendship when the “dream” does seem to become a blissful reality. But they pass–they pass . . . leaving us once more lonely in the wilderness of the Everyday, wondering if, after all, those splendid moments which are over were ever anything more than merely the figments of our own imagination and had nothing whatever to do with the love we believed was ours, the friendship which seemed to come towards us with open arms–that the Dream and the Hope, and the fulfilment of both, merely lived and died in our own hearts alone–in our own hearts and nowhere . . . alas! nowhere else. I often think it must be so. Our love is always the same; only the loved-one changes. God alone is a permanent Ideal because He lives within us–we never meet Him as a separate entity. Thus we can never become disillusioned.