It will not surrender
A descriptive attempt
I remain captive in
Detained by an insolent gaze
I shout where I am not heard
I feel what is not
Torment expressed through a sigh
I’ll let the skies cry for me tonight
It bends my need toward
It debates my intent to
It cloaks me in its own
With the dowry of my will
I hear what remains to be spoken
I see what cannot be
Acrid to faith’s failing light
Let the skies cry for me tonight
It takes what has not
Believes what has not
Disrobes what is meant to
Suffocates what is trying to breathe
I tread where the path is uncertain
Where the deep waters
Unsinkable only on land
The skies cry for me tonight
It’s okay to hope. For hope is not a proclamation of what is, but a whisper of what is desired to be.
It is so tender and sensitive that we must shield it from the siphoning gaze of disapproval, and hide it from the scorn of disbelief.
It is not something sure; it’s hope.
And the cast of this kind does not fare well in hostile environments. To nurture this delicate shoot is a specialty in its own rite. The untrained hand will clumsily treat this vulnerable plant with imposing fingers, and suffocating pressure. The wisdom of a gentle touch is what reveals its treasure.
There are a few collectibles of hope my heart still keeps in display, but they are hidden from view; protected from disrepute. It is among these whispers I hear my heart’s voice clearly; beckoning to come, a longing which never makes a sound.
We anticipate the hope and expectations to remain neatly packaged in a small parcel. For what else does it mean to expect?
But what is the proper response to a birth which is…still? We call it a birth even when life no longer animates the tiny members of our…expected.
Her face ashen with the pain that still accompanies this process. Her body jolts instinctually; directed into crushing rhythms orchestrated by knowledge only nature enjoys.
She has no time to cry. The strength required to assist this process empties the reservoir of her energy. So tears remain tucked away; unspoken, but not unheard. What could ever be the redemption in this?
Her body grinds in protest of its delicate occupant, and her fists cling to the cold bars of the bed. She wonders if she can slip away; if there is a way, also, for her to be still.
An incredulous scream unfurls from the brokenness of her heart as she yields to the undulating breaks in silence.
And then, he’s here. The air remains still. He’s here. The place of his arrival drops in temperature. He’s here, but already gone.
Her lips inquire ‘why’ as her tears baptize her infant son. He’s here, but already no more. And the questions of existence assault her delicate faith as she desperately implores the absent sky to show her the same dismissal.
Life is too silent. The cries are too still. And hope…well for her an abomination.
Life just seems to flow from him in unexpected ways.
The disappointments of life are interrupted by his dazzling smile, or sincere embrace.
A day burdened with trouble is worth a shot again just for the chance to be gifted by his delightful disposition.
I can do today again tomorrow for the chance that he’ll live more free. That he won’t collapse when the weak leave; that he won’t be destroyed when humanness shows. I may lack the perfection I wished to give, but I give what I have so he learns just to give.
In my offering of a Christmas card recently, the recipient sighed in sullen tones as she juxtaposed her assessment of the still image against the regret and longing inside of her: “I wish we had this,” her heart barely whispered.
I rendered a soft, understanding embrace, but silently wished she knew. I wished she only knew that the captured image does not show the whole picture.
It doesn’t show a woman so unsettled by her fractured home she didn’t want another reminder of what’s missing. It fails to show the broken and misspoken promises that led to the breaking of her home. It does not show the wringing of her heart as she wished she could only give her son more…no, those are not there.
The lighting of the image misses the darker parts of the whole picture. If we knew it all, would we still covet what lies beyond us?
I am more careful, now, when my heart wants to drink morosely from the wells of want.
The glistening smiles may simply be the reflections of a hundred broken dreams. A face forward may be the briefest pause captured before gasping for air. And the prettiest picture may be the only one left of the entire collection. As I wanted her to uncovet me, I felt a similar reminder to consider the parts of a picture we don’t see.
I sly smile conceals the depths of torment I am actively abating at your evaluation of me. Sure there are parts I present which I would not necessarily label as disposable, but maybe good for the refinery.
Refinery? What do you want to improve of me? What do you think needs refinement? I never asked you. I. never. asked. you.
But I resignedly resist the need to really present my best to you; give the treasured of my gifts to you; bring the truth of my being to you. I must resist this place in which a part of me welcomes you, but a wiser part forbids you.
Perhaps I have given the choicest fruit away before, and in horror and disbelief watched its simple covering receive a scathing glance; witnessing the soft flesh of my being torn through by unrelenting, unloving jagged teeth.
Perhaps it was only my valuation that honored this fruit; that assumed that as this fruit yielded itself with its mix of tormenting flavor that it would be savored- not greedily devoured as it left blissful tracks of nectar in the satiated corners of my consumer’s mouth.
Yes, maybe it was only me. The unlovely remains of my purest offering maintain that instead of becoming selective in who I give my best to, I resign- crestfallen…to only give, only be, only allow to breathe- a presentable, but mediocre me.
It doesn’t fit well bound between two covers. It seeps through the crevices, and claws past attempts to contain it neatly in the confines of a single story; or a simple lesson. It bleeds; it pulses; it bends in areas, and breaks horribly in others. It is not just a story; it is my life.