“I love you like a river…” (from Aleph by Paulo Coelho)

by Catherine Chiu

“I love you,” I tell her. “I love you because all the loves in the world are like different rivers flowing into the same lake, where they meet and are transformed into a single love that becomes rain and blesses the earth.

“I love you like a river that creates the right conditions for trees and bushes and flowers to flourish along it’s banks. I love you like a river that gives water to the thirsty and takes people where they want to go.

“I love you like a river that understands that it must learn to flow differently over waterfalls and to rest in the shallows. I love you because we are all born in the same place, at the same source, which keeps us provided with a constant supply of water. And so, when we feel weak, all we have to do is wait a little. The spring returns, the winter snows melt and fills us with new energy.

“I love you like a river that begins as a solitary trickle in the mountains and gradually grows and joins other rivers until, after a certain point, it can flow around any obstacle in order to get where it wants.

“I receive your love, and I give you mine. Not the love of a man for a woman, not the love of a father for a child, not the love of God for his creatures, but a love with no name and no explanation, like a river that cannot explain why it follows a particular course but simply flows onward. A love that asks for nothing and gives nothing in return; it is simply there. I will never be yours, and you will never be mine; nevertheless, I can honestly say: I love you, I love you, I love you.”

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