mosaic

you ask too much, they said

who could imagine such –

that one should deserve a life

so rare and stunning?

it’s impossible they cried

no one really gets that..

and we each took our dreams

like shards of glittering glass

like brightly colored bits of hope

like joy in the morning…

and tucked the pieces away

but not forgotten, not discarded

waiting to be discovered

by careful hands

with honest hearts

and here they are now

shining like jewel weed

in a green field

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2 am

waking from deep slumber

world heavy on my heart

and yet I feel an ember warm

and glowing in the dark

I didn’t know it lived there still

I did not know it lived

as though perhaps it’s spark

was doused, not able to be lit

as if that day I’d lost all hope

salt tears flooding my eyes

when standing there beneath the tree

I made such compromise

my world so surely rent apart

and then reformed anew

and I thought then, as I do now

of something quite like you

with heart outside my chest I stand

my sleeve a bloody mess

the beating drum of sudden starts

and sudden, lovely, rests

I do not know from whence this came

or where my feet will go

but in the warm and gathering dark

an ember burns and glows

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deeper still

I’d like to grasp the words

that form behind my eyes

and sink deeper still

to a place I cannot reach

somewhere in my chest

where it’s warm and safe

but words are a flighty thing

devices meant to explain

what cannot be contained

in a code of shapes and sounds

so I’ll sit in silence

letting them sink deeper still

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the way of this

all the small things

I fold them between my hands

pulling close to my chest

these hopes and fears

that sometimes you shelter

and sometimes you smash

and I wonder

do you even realize

the strength you wield?

the way they crack

the way they crumble

the way the fall away

the way my chest expands

and contracts with a hollow ache

when I let you hold

in your trembling hands

all the small things

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clatter

my fingers fly to find the keys

to unlock why I even care

about the words that come

in flurries and rests

like a song I thought I knew

until the bridge comes

and I loose my place

stumbling over the lyrics

my knees are bruised

from all the times I’ve tripped

over words that burst

from my breasts

and fall at your feet

with a clatter

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far from perfect

And then – just like that –  there are the days I don’t struggle with me at all… Because I remember that we are all flawed. Because I know we are all struggling in some way to find acceptance. Love. Hope. Joy.

Nothing is harder or easier for any of us. It just is.

We put on our faces, go to work, go to school, pick up the kids, make the dinner, do the dishes…

Some days we just fall apart inside while the outside looks perfect.

Some days the outside fights back against the internal dialogue that is striving for perfection.

Have a massive breakout. Trip and skin your knees raw and ugly. Wear yourself down so far that your body begins to collapse, keeping you from the ability to hide how hard life is behind a plastic smile.

But real is beautiful. Because it’s real.

You are beautiful… in all your mess and disaster.

Own it.

Today, I do.

I don’t have to go in to work today. Good thing.

I slept fitfully. I woke up at 5:30am. Then went back to sleep. It’s nearly 11 and I’m still in flannel pajama pants with polar bears on them. I haven’t even brushed my teeth. I’m on my second cup of coffee. I’ve already wasted an hour on Facebook. I’ve done nothing of value today. Wait. I fed the dogs because otherwise they wouldn’t have left me alone. There is a list of things that need doing as long as my arm. Literally. I have half finished projects everywhere. There is a large pile of painting supplies (and other various home improvement tools) in my kitchen. It’s been there a month. I have things I should be doing from home for work. But I will work about 25 hours in two days this weekend, so I’m avoiding anything to do with it…

And I need a shower.

But this is life. I’m breathing.

Are you breathing?

Good.

That is enough.

Take another deep breath.

Show me your real face… the one that’s afraid.

Let’s be real with each other, my friend.

I don’t expect you to embody perfection.

Just breathe. Just let yourself be. Just be.

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to look

Somewhere along the line

I got the idea of what I am

supposed to be for everyone

else. But not what I am

supposed to be for me.

So I sweat my way through

feelings. Fearful and flailing

as I try to keep my face turned

in the direction I’ve been taught

to look. Like a woman of valor

like a pretty thing that smiles

like someone who’s got her shit

together when I’m falling apart

as though my worth comes

from how someone else sees

the lines in my skin

and the curves of flesh that roll

away from my bones in a way

that I’ve been taught is too much

and somehow this makes me

not enough. So I diminish my voice

because I can’t shrink my hips

or my thighs enough to please

someone. I don’t know who.

Maybe its me. Maybe its you.

Maybe I just want to be

wanted for what I already am

and anything I might become.

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an easter hymn

do not be troubled for me

for I know the ways of my heart

fickle and faithful at once

unsure and unable to settle

all the while digging in

for I know what eternity feels like

the birds sing her song

and I will build an alter 

where I find the stones

old trees will tell me stories

of how to love again