the words goodbyes are made of.
We sat on the swings as I gave you a gift that floated through the air, twirling its way through your hair and hitting you in the chest like honesty always does, wrapped in ‘um’s’ and ‘like’s’ but in one unique ‘thank you for loving me & reminding me that life is worth fighting for.’
And then we kissed and our smiles fell into each other in some sort of way that finally gives you the ‘aha!’ wonder of what it feels like in the movies.
(You come to find, it’s better than the movies.)
When I first felt that raindrop on my skin, it was as if Heaven was letting me peek through her fingers to see my surprise: a beautiful warm summer shower. My hair began to plaster to my face and your hair only seemed to curl more, as the summer shower turned into a torrential downpour. The sky opened up and boy, did she sing.
It was the moment when you said “you taste like rain” and I burst into a delightful holy laugh that I knew fifty years from now, I would want to remember this moment like it was yesterday.
You said “things can only get better if they change.” So we walked back to the car as tears chased after then raindrops on my cheek. All I could do was let them fall, and thankfully, you let them fall on you. Even as my mascara seemed to trail behind, over my nose, up to my eyebrow, across my cheek, and settling in to your shirt, you didn’t mind; you called me ‘beautiful’ just the same.
But I couldn’t stop it. The fears came just as quickly, spilling out like smoke from my throat- so this, this is what has been choking me- filling up the car, blinding me from seeing truth. But you spoke and where the light is, the darkness can not comprehend it. It was gone.
I saw you only to see me in the reflection of your eyes, an absolute mess but loved nonetheless. Then you pulled me in, a florist with gentle hands (& smiling eyes), leaving with ‘I believe in you, fearless.’
I find myself in the same place most days. I’m fighting for energy, choking on recycled air. I find my efforts lacking like those I have buried grudges against, six feet under, for their absence, and yet, I’m absent- the least of these, I am she.
And as easy as it would be to let this psalm end, I want to fight like David.
So I cry “forsake me not when my strength is spent” and I hope continually, and I will praise you more yet, never stopping to count my aches, only to count the ways you love me because you are good. Your very essence is good, and you don’t withhold from me. My God, with you, I lack no good thing.
It’ll be one year on the eighteenth
Since I’ve painted the roses red
And although I no longer want to die
A garden of scars remains on my side
Screaming for remembrance
“You can always frolic through these flowers again!”
And I can’t always hear Jesus
When He’s hanging on the cross
Begging for my life-
The one who shouted “crucify!”
So how do you tell someone
About the moments of doubt
The roars; the beating fists,
The silence when apathy hits
The “God, how could you do this?
How could you let something like this exist?”
How do you tell someone
About the moments you think
It’d be easier to eat the feast of the king
Than choke down
An old piece of bread
You take a deep breath and
Tell the ones who understand
What it means to wander
Through the wilderness
Unbind your vessels from the vines
And let the overflow of your heart
Fall from your mouth
Bringing rain to your drought-
Kneel before the flowers that bloom
Letting them train you in the art of opening up
And if the ones you trust
Offer to carry your load
Release your death grip
My child, just let go.
For it’s not good for man to be alone.
Or when you get the feeling
His handprints are branded into your skin-
And I say when
Because sin likes to remind us
Of where we’ve been-
Let the burn of iron to flesh
Provoke you to confess-
Tell your friends!
Undress, and let them doctor your wounds
The best they can,
Washing your raw and broken body
With the blood of the Lamb
Give your pores time to soak it in
Don’t try to exist with broken limbs
Healing isn’t something that just happens-
My love, you must chase after it.
So I’m already preparing myself
For the conversation
I will have with you,
On a rainy Sunday night.
Standing at the sink
My hands will shake
And the plate
Existing to inevitably break.
I’ll pick it up
Only for the broken piece
To bring peace
To my brokenness
When it meets my hand:
A rose painted red.
I’ll turn to tell you
“I think I’m getting bad again”
But I hold my breath
For the tears in your eyes
Tell me you heard my
Blooming days ago
When the buds started to show
You’ll pull me in,
A florist with gentle hands
Naming me Fearless
Because I didn’t hold it in