“May the Lord watch between me and thee while
we are apart one from another.” -Genesis 31:49
If only he could go somewhere where I could go.
Not deeper into alone, for if the dead float then
I could still reach him. But in order to enter the
river I must learn to swim—he was always a
natural at that while I was consumed with fear.
Maybe God would let me unravel the stitches
on your lips and you could tell me how—how
you swim and how you float, because I want to
float along side you, but I can’t reach you while
your there—we always said “see you on the other
side” and we were always joking, but now–now I
really need to see you on the other side because
love makes you blood and blood is blood so tell me
how our bodies pumped with the same blood can
float along the same river. I know God needed you
but so do I. So maybe we can share you, or at least
let you talk to me because I see you out on
the water, so God send me a boat.
-after Traci Brimhall’s Dear Thanantos
The distance between two points
increases over time—like a map
being stretched little by little every
day. Force it too far and it snaps like
an old, overused rubber band. Instead
give it a rest and fold it in half a few
times. Though now, the map is distorted
and can no longer navigate from point
A to point B efficiently. Instead, the
journey entails trekking over folds
and bends and dead-ends until you
reach your destination with much
frustration. While the long expedition
leaves you with bumps and bruises
you are also left with a good story and
a map filled with memories within every
fold and bend and dead end.
My time with you is limited—all I hear is the
metronome of our descending clock
reverberating through my mind.
I want to take a piece of you with me when I go—
Tuck your laughter under my arm like a book of
poetry so I can read it whenever I please—
Then stuff your arms in my pockets so I can feel
your warm embrace whenever I’m feeling down.
But I can’t cut pieces of you like I can slice a piece of pie—
I can have all of you or none of you. But I don’t ever
want to choose none of you.
There was a sparkle in God’s eye when he told the clouds to
drape the sky like a lace covering;
patches of blue show through like skin through the open
stitching of a white lace dress.
The rain wraps around the city like a cold embrace that
envelops everything within,
until the only option is to collapse beneath its authority.
Because soon, the city realizes that
their skyscrapers needed to be brushed with the strokes
of water and their streets needed
to be swept by the broom of the droplets in order for it to
be made anew because sometimes
it doesn’t take the intense scrubbing of a bleach-stained
sponge to cleanse the city of its poison,
all it takes is a little pure rain to adorn the city and rinse
everything within and
God knew that when He told the clouds to drape the sky
like a lace covering.
For the first time in her life, she felt like a sea
shell—something to be picked up, looked at,
maybe admired by some, but soon thrown
back into the sand without a second thought.
She didn’t want that—she didn’t want to be a
silver charm that hangs on a bracelet and bangs
against the countless other charms she’s beside.
No one will notice her stuck in the sand or blending
in on a bracelet for she looks just like everyone
else. She wanted to be a colorful feather on a
bird, one that helps it go from bland to beautiful, so
beautiful that it is impossible to get lost in a sea of
sand or a line of charms, for she is unique and always
comes prepared with a map to lead her back to herself,