We all face trials. It's an eventuality that we cannot escape. I have endured patience, compassion, friendship, love, faith and many other spiritual trials and tests in my past. The last trial, aside from parenthood and couplehood, which are not things that I am ready for now, is detachment. I have longed to be detached from the world so that I can fasten my hold and grip on the hem of the robe of God. For years it has been my ardent and true desire to embrace detachment, nevermind the oxymoron in that statement.

You represent that final test, that trial of detachment. Now that I appreciate and realize this, I shall do my outright best not to fail; instead I will behave with deportment and dignity, not foolishness and jealousy. That is my only hope of passing this test, of passing you from my heart.

I kept it no secret, when I met you, that you are attractive to me in every way imaginable. Actually, I was rather up front about that- though not eager, merely appreciative of your complete beauty. I was so stunned and amazed by your presence that it stayed with me like a wafting perfume, lingering in my soul and mind like the most pleasant fragrance on Earth. So astonished by your all-consuming beauty was I that I spoke highly of you to the closest of my friends, my best friends. And even the best of my friends, a man whom I care for deeply and cherish as a brother, was overjoyed to see me with a glimmer of hope in my heart.

A week later, he met you and all was lost. He was equally enamored with your beauty and took his impression a step further, getting it in his head that you were manna from Heaven, put in his path by God.

I can contend with many things, but the kind of belief my best friend has in regards to you, I cannot even hold a candle to. I am not an aggressive man. I am not forceful or charismatic to the degree that he is. I am not the kind of angst spirit that he is, interesting and fragile and hopeless and afraid and in need of care and love. I am complete, independent, unfettered, faithful, strong, honest, kind and sincere. He is none of these things, at least not on a consistent basis. He is neither steadfast nor tame. He is more interesting than I. You have said so with your actions, with your late-night strolls alongside him, with your intimate conversations, with your ardor and praise. I am forgotten and he is always on your mind, even at the center of your schedule. I am a pleasant memory of a kind man with a kind heart and kind words, but utterly boring in comparison to my best friend.

He has stated, clearly, his intention to pursue you, regardless of the knowledge that you and I, when we met, were developing our own relationship. He is heedless and careless and thoughtless of nothing else but his own selfish desires. I understand this; you are worth a thousand deaths to pursue, beauty incarnate. I cannot blame his desire. I blame only his belief that my suffering is a worthwhile price to pay for his temporary lust-filled fantasies. I blame his greed and his blindness to my agony at this hateful choice. I would rather look at a rock than see my best friend. I would rather share the company of a murderer than that of my closest friend.

And I blame your lack of vision, your lack of maturity, your desire to embrace everything too quickly, your youthful invulnerability and your own blindness. I would rather love the sky than see you dote over a man that will ultimately harm you in ways you've never been hurt.

And, so, I am removing myself from your presence, the two of you. I find jealousy and rage to be repugnant and distasteful and undignified. I find this experience to be a prime opportunity to learn detachment- because I want you so badly, I want to tell you these things so much, that it hurts. I must put you out of my mind and rely on my faith in your strength. He will hurt you, and you will learn from it and there is nothing I can do about it because you don't know yet what lies the human heart is capable of telling itself. I am gone.

I am gone.

Call me when it's over. Perhaps, then, I can tell you the things I've always wanted to say.