Loving is not the sum of wishes brought to fruition.

No book can fully convey the nuances of longing,

or how wishing continues long after it has come true,

how the pain of seeing weeds and wounds can unravel dreams.

 

I dreamed of you

but all my imaginings

were leaves in the wind

insubstantial, 

and beholden to the elements and seasons.

Only living as long as they are connected to roots,

fed by dedicated cultivation,

and given room to grow.

 

I prepared for you

But no amount of study could ready me 

for the reality of living with you.

each tired morning

each night of fighting

    the pervasiveness of loneliness;

each perception check against my projections:

disappointments stacking like bricks in the wall

we never thought we’d build in the middle of love’s garden.

 

I am not what you wished for.

Could not, will never be.

And you are not what I hoped.

Wishes live not in this complicated world.

Hopes are only for those too conditioned to act

and too afraid to actually change.

But we are still, again and again choosing to be here

even as the coating wears off

and the cracks show.

We might have to dig up the foundation

to build a house that will last,

one careful moment of tenderness

at a time.

We might have to let go of what we think we want

or deserve

to meet each other on the solid ground,

in the real world.

To plant seeds we will have to carefully tend through the season of darkness

that precedes each revelation

and thus, be delighted by the beauty of Spring,

as the saplings push through

the cracks in the thawing wall

wearing it away until it becomes a frame:

a foundation for the new life to come. 

 

 

Love is not what we imagine.

Not born of a thousand wishes,

or a million full-breathed sighs.

Not a prize

to be won,

when we finally get it right,

and blaze like a well-placed Sun.

There are no happily-ever-afters

on the path of true lovers.

Happiness is a fleeting, gracious visitor,

who does not wait for the bed to be made to stop by,

nor choose to come just because a perfect meal has been laid

and the house is finally clean.

 

No one can take away our longing.

 

Nothing in love, in life, in these precious lives is guaranteed,

other than surprise.

 

Longing is humanity’s greatest gift,

and perhaps our heaviest burden.

 

Years of yearning

and careful study

cannot prepare us for the reality

of another breathing, hurting, needing, opening, human being beside us;

for the capacity to long for someone

even when he is seven inches away;

for the necessity to be willing, again,

like children, to fail, to fall, to make awful mistakes,

to try and try and try harder and fail better and try again 

until we learn the art of loving well.

No fairytale could touch the immense truth that is learning how to love,

or the knowing that forever is lived

one tearful prayer

one anguished fight

one remembered detail,

one. breath. of forgiveness,

one day,

one kiss

at a time.

 

 

(hear this piece on soundcloud)

where breath meets
and light explodes inside.
Sentences become questions
and the quest inexorably changes.
We are changed by this loving.
We are known by our seeing.

 

Loosing history
sand falling through healing fingers
enabling the dexterity necessary
to weave a blanket 
from our unthreaded tapestries.
We cast a new clay vessel
from the shards of every heartbreak
from childhood hence.
Pull down each post from the fence
around our garden hearts,
to become firewood 
that burns with our love,
to fire the pots 
that will hold our future food.

 

This love is not for the feint,
though sometimes the fey.
Not for any part that clings 
to our illusions of separation,
or clutches the familiar wretchedness 
our wounds would bind us in.
We are learning that the only bounds around us
are the ones we've built.
And this bond of love
a tight rope over the jagged sharpness of our jadedness.
We let go
we hold on
we breathe into our weakness 
to remember we are strong.
We practice togetherness
through each tremulous unearthing
of what is sacred inside us.

 


This sapling,
This tree of love we are growing,
watered by tears, prayers, orgasms, and gratitude,
enlivened by our pulling the weeds and rocks from the soil.

Spirit touches this body 
through his hands,
through his lips caressing my brow.


I am a little girl lost in the woods,
and he plants a sign post.
I am a homeless priestess
and he shelters me,
while offering that we rebuild the temple
through our living.
I am simply and fully, finally, a woman 
praying for freedom,
and he smiles and says, "come on, let's learn to be humans, being."

The power of being loved as we are.

Radiantly spinning around our own stars

born from the willingness to writhe and rise in mutual burning.

This effulgent elegance, this single branch

of a dream-tree long understood as essential to the unfolding

of a heart’s prismatic holding.

 

I am made partially of him, now.

Cells rubbed open by an unquenchable desire for knowing

of what we are truly made.

The words whispered in the depths of our mornings, mournings, moorings,

but a brush painting vague shapes across the ocean upon which we sail.

This boat made bit by bit,

each breath taken together a well-laid plank,

the lavish tears a lacquer against the inevitable demise of our preconceptions

into something that will wear our finish, but never break our bough.

This ship, made of every wish ever made to know the marrow of love

rocks on the uncertain certainty that we can never be more or less than our wildest imaginings:

that we can never be all we hope, yet that is all.

 

The undiscovered country looms before crystal-colored eyes,

and for a moment nothing is known

but the feeling of this heartbeat under my ear as home,

and the ground quaking to reassemble into an Earth where my island has been obliterated

and in its place stands a bridge;

backdrop to an unfailingly open palm. 

 

Receiving the unending acceptance and unblinking reflection

that transforms shame into celebration,

that makes art of every fat roll, every wrinkle, every disappointment

and dribble of well-crafted cynicism,

that calls and entices and awakens me into the fullness of the shape love would invite me to fill.

Which is exactly as I am, 

precisely imperfectly fully the me that sings,

minus the surrender of my brokenness,

and with the silhouette of tandem wings.

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© 2018 by Medicinal Poetry