Better to Believe in a Lie Than Nothing - Memory

by Matt Triewly

I'm sitting in the tranquil tea gardens of Quarr Abbey; blue, blue sky and the sun beating down.

I'm with Della. She's a handsome looking woman: thick curly dark hair; pale complexion; hazel eyes; neat features.

A couple of hours previous we had been fucking in my bed. I had savoured her naked body and ran my hands over her ivory flesh. I had sucked her ample breasts and penetrated her dark and thick black triangle. She had shivered when she had come it was a response unique to her; and her legs were gripped between mine as I too climaxed. We had embraced for a while after.

"It smells of sex in here. I like that," she had stated.

I had cooked her breakfast.

Easy like Sunday morning...

I had recalled the tune in my head.


Sitting here on a rustic bench amongst the carefully tended greenery; the distant and muted roar of the traffic; the murmur of the other patrons; monks in their long robes, wearing enigmatic expressions, occasionally wandering past.


I speculate that I could love Della.

A phrase unbidden forces itself into my mind. It is an intruder.

Better to believe in a lie than nothing.

Better. To. Believe. In. A. Lie. Than. Nothing.

What does it mean? Is it a subconscious reaction to the trappings of religion surrounding me; a warning not to be entranced by the illusion of religion?

We continue to chat.

I recall the words Della spoke to me once before in these very gardens: "Do you think we could still be friends if we ever split up?'"



Better to believe in a lie than nothing.

We finish our drinks and catch the bus back to Ryde. We then walk to Puckpool. Eat brown bread prawn sandwiches at Dell's Café: The sun glinting off Spinnaker Tower across the Solent; people lounging on the golden sands; swimmers in the blue green sea.

Better to believe in a lie than nothing.

I walk her back to the Hovercraft Terminal. I wave to her on the craft as it slides off the slipway, turns and heads to Southsea.

I think of her back home across the sea; near but so far.

Better to believe in a lie than nothing.

I make my way home.

Back in my flat I pick up a scrap of paper and a red marker pen. I clumsily scrawl in capital letters: BETTER TO BELIEVE IN A LIE THAN NOTHING. I secure it to my fridge with a magnet.

Every day I pass it and see it.

What does it mean? What does it mean to me?

Truth is subjective.

I conclude that you can't believe in nothing; it's a paradox.

Without God life has no value. No. Without belief in God life has no value. But, it is the value that is God; value is God.

My mind is at peace; but not for long.

Better to believe in a lie than nothing.

It still troubles me.

Della dumped me a year later - no real reasons.

Do you know what?

I could have loved her.

Better to believe in a lie than nothing.

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