Arrested by the First Loss

Melancholy is about the loss of desire. The loss of the desire to do something about desire.

The mourner experiences every new loss as a new loss, even though there are and have always been, other losses. Loss is richer, as Baldwin said about suffering, because you know what it means to lose something/someone. Not in spite of it.

The melancholic has already lost (originally, constitutionally) in a way that makes every new love or achievement canceled, neutralized. “This has already happened before,” he thinks, in advance.

The melancholic never really wants anything or anyone ever again because the melancholic is still and always arrested by the first loss.

Crossposted with Love Dog.

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