“The District Sleeps Alone Tonight” by The Postal Service

The rush and push of long-distance relationships, and the inevitable in-betweens of lonely nights that seem to last too long, is what this song reminds me of. The kind of loneliness when you know in your heart you are not really alone, that you are with someone dear, and yet you are still undeniably lonely. They say that feeling alone in a crowd of people is worse than actually being completely isolated and physically alone. If that is something you believe, the it seems also to be true that it is a worse feeling to be fraught with loneliness when you are in a relationship then if you are truly on your own, and lonely in your singledom.

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“The District Sleeps Alone Tonight” by The Postal Service – from the album, Give Up (2003)

“The district sleeps alone tonight,
after the bars turn out their lights,
and send the autos swerving,
into the loneliest evening.”

“The District Sleeps Alone Tonight” by The Postal Service
from the album, Give Up (2003)
Song Of The Day – July 5, 2011

In that distance when love is far away from where each person typically sleeps, the nights can seem endless. Sad songs echo off the walls, whether you are playing them, or just feeling them. The floorboards creak, the bed feels too big, and the phone becomes your closest companion. That kind of ache and longing, well, it’s not for the faint of heart.

Art by Kat Tsai

The nights when the two are reunited, they are joyous, passionate, but also terribly fleeting. For me, when I was part of a long-distance love, there was always that shadow hanging over us when we were in-person together that nagged at the reality that soon we would be apart again. Each sentence seemed heavy, each embrace fragile, and the sun coming up in the morning, though often beautiful, seemed to signal the tick-tock of time pulling us too soon apart.

For me, well, I’m too faint of heart for that kind of love. I could never do it again.

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