in between the silences

perhaps my words fall

flat and lifeless to the ground

perhaps you feel loved

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Ent

I imagine you a tree

perhaps a tall cedar or oak

older than I, and wiser

with branches that shade

and roots that run deep

bending in the wind

unmoving, yet so alive

and I lay myself down

and breathe deep

and sleep

mending

How is it that I can pass my heart from hand to hand so easily?

Perhaps that is the wrong word.

No, it’s not for lack of bruising by their touch.

There isn’t ease as it’s mangled and oft torn in pieces, but still it seems to grow stronger with each passing.

Like the way it grew to contain love for each of my children when I thought I couldn’t love anything more.

Somehow, I feel stitched together again to share anew for every bit that’s been taken from me.

The callouses formed don’t seem to make it harden, just able to beat with more steady rhythm… love deeper… live fuller.

rooted

If you would just be like all the rest

this would be so much easier

ask me to leap, to fly

take no heed for my safety

or the feelings deep in my chest

then I could fall, feel the bruises

pick myself back up again

like all the other times

instead you gently hold my hand

and coax me off the cliff

warning me of the distance

like I haven’t felt the ground

rise up below me

taking away my breath

as I crash at the bottom

as though this will make me turn

and walk away

thinking you don’t want me

to live and fly and be free

but once I had a vision

of a tall, strong tree

rooted just back from the place

where I’ve thrown myself off

so many times before

I saw myself lashed to it

allowing its roots to save me

from certain death

and the binding feels like arms

circling around me

safely

you don’t seem to realize

that your deep roots

make me want to plant my own

and give up my attempts to fly

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to be neighbors

tonight I would brave the dark

to walk along the wooded path

and arrive at your door

chilled, and just a little tired

you would greet me

light shining out the doorway

illuminating you on the porch

and the kettle would whistle

and we would go in together

where I would make you a cup of tea

while you stoke the fire

and we’d sip together in silence

as I lean my head against

your shoulder and listen

to your steady breath

because we are and are not yet

and steadfast choices

keep you rooted deep in the earth

where you grew up strong

as hope rises and falls

like breath filling the breadth

between our doorsteps

and I will not hurry along

towards some destination far off

I will hold the sacred space here

as our tie grows further knotted

like roots of trees planted close

like fingers wound together

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sightseeing

do you know what it is like to be

round about these parts

that I have hated for so long

hiding the range of my body

like it’s not a scenic view

like it’s not worth traversing

like it’s not allowed so much space

as if no one would want to travel here

and all the months of solitude

learned me this thing

I’m not designed for hiding

I won’t be scared of my own skin

or find flaws where uniqueness lies

in what my tiger mother stripes encircle

allowing someone else the power

to name my worth based on weight

or measure

or painted on eyes

dead in apology for

this spot… that spot…

wrinkle – scar – jiggle – gray

beat down broken heart

healing and won’t allow you to

pick apart until there is nothing left

a nothing called too much

because this body moves

it carries me to places I want to go

not afraid to hear “so pretty” and believe it

not afraid to feel the sun or the moon

or 3 o’clock in the afternoon

with sunlight streaming in

no, this body is alive

cut-off shorts and cleavage

kissed by strangers under the music

kissed by friends who don’t remember

kissed by my own soft words reminding me

that it will out pace you

because when this heart

beats quickly

you will want to be near

and if you miss this trip

you will miss an entire world

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A list of wants

I want to do what I want to do

and not regret

I want to get lost in the woods

and not be found

I want to pretend my heart is strong

and not praying you’ll stay forever 

while I sit in this ray of sunlight as long as it will shine on me