Love This Body

I love these legs.
They keep me standing
in the fiercest winds.

I love this skin
all brown and brave,
the color of delicious sin.

I love these breasts
that feed my babes
as they drink down life.

I love these eyes
though wet with tears
overflowing divine light.

I love the power
of this heart, the
secrets in my cells.

I love this body
like no one could,
save the Creator Herself.

Good Morning

Sitting in the quiet of the world,
embraced by the waning dark of night,
I think of you and I want to say –
“Good morning…

Look what joys life continues to bring!
Hear the songs my heart’s learning to sing!”
Then I remember you’re not here on this
good morning.

So I whisper my words to the sky,
as the darkness gives way to the light,
and I still my aching heart,
ever mourning.

Let the day come as it may.
Let life pass, let my soul age.
‘Til we meet again, I’ll greet you in my thoughts
each morning.

The Mourning Year

In month zero
I mourned the loss
of a child I would never meet.

Then month three came
and I mourned the loss
of the first true home I’d seen.

Month six came
and we mourned the passing
of the man my husband called dad.

In month nine we
shared an anniversary
where we mourned everything we once had.

Month twelve came
and I mourned the death
of my beloved brother and friend.

Month thirteen has arrived
and I’m tired, so tired,
of this mourning that just won’t end.

I’ve lost all perspective
on beauty and hope
and my dreams being held at bay.

But I give thanks for the love
standing strong by my side,
month after month, easing my pain.

Despite all the hard
and the endless tears,
one thing for sure I now know.

This mourning year
gave me one great gift.
The knowing that I am never alone.

Two Lil Souls

Once upon a time there were two lil souls
sitting on the edge of a cloud.
The first one said, “Let’s have some fun! Let’s go!
Let’s play on the ground!”

The second one said, “I’m worried. I’m scared.”
The first replied, “I’ll keep you safe.”
The second one said, “I dunno. It looks hard.”
The first replied, “I’ll pave the way.”

So the first one jumped down and found a mother
and became a lil boy.
He laughed, he played, he skipped, he sang,
he amassed a mountain of toys.

“Come down,” he called to the second lil soul.
“Life is so great and grand!”
“I’m scared,” the soul said. “I love you,” the boy said,
“I promise I’ll hold your hand.”

The lil soul had faith in the brave lil boy
and decided to give life a whirl.
She leapt off the cloud to the Earth below
and was born a lil girl.

The boy taught the girl how to read and write
and ride a bike real well.
He taught her how to climb real big trees,
and wiped her tears when she fell.

As they got older he taught her to fight, not just stand
like a helpless lil doll.
When other boys started to look at the grown girl
big brother made all those boys crawl.

When big brother had two kids of his own,
sister knew he’d be a great dad.
He’d raised her like she was his child.
He was the best any kid could’ve had.

But then one day big brother got sick
and he went back up to the clouds.
“Where’d you go?” sister said. “Why did you leave?
You promised you’d be around.”

“We’re soulmates, lil sister,” he whispered from heaven.
“Now dry those silly tears.
I’m in the wind and the stars, and when you come back
to our cloud, I’ll be here.”

Dedicated to my beloved big brother, father-figure, and closest friend. May he rest in peace. 1973 – 2014.

Let Me

Let me hold you, wipe your tears
and press your heart close to mine.
Let me tell you it’ll be okay
even if it’s a lie.
Let me stop this storm from comin’,
or at least shelter you.
Let me soften the swift destruction
of the only peace you knew.

If I could cry your tears for you
I’d create another ocean.
If I could scream your screams for you
I’d tear the skies wide open.
If I could shatter into enough pieces
so that you wouldn’t have to
I’d outnumber this planet’s grains of sand;
the stars in the sky, too.

Let me mend your heartbreak,
be the haven where you rest.
Let me spend my life rebuilding
your broken, shattered nest.
If I can’t do any of those things,
or you think I can’t understand,
At least let me sit by your side
and gently hold your hand.

A Choice

Tell us what you see, they said …
These two men. Gorgeous. Sitting on my couch.
Talented beyond compare. Both of them
Asking to be seen through my eyes.
Tell us the truth, they said.

What do you see in me?

You, I said to one …
I could look into those eyes for hours and days.
I could kiss every line of your body, every crease of your muscled limbs.
I could break my heart over your beauty, the stunning debonair of your face.
I could wrap myself around you and cling to you,
spend nights
and nights
and nights and nights with you, lose myself in you
until I shattered in your embrace.

He laughed, blushing.

And that smile, I said …
Holds secrets in its dimples I’m desperate to learn.
I want to sit on the swings with you.
I want to play in the sand with you.
I want to run and laugh under the sun until all we can do
Is collapse into one another’s arms.
And then I’d want to do it again with you.

He smiled, his eyes sweet, and said …
(in that rich, polished accent)
You’re silly.

And that voice, I said …
I could listen to it every night,
every night, over and over,
telling me tales,
speaking sweet syllables of poetic sorcery.
I could drown in the luscious sound of you
And it would be a good and joyous death.

He said, as his dimples shined …
You really are a poet.

Sexy, that one
I thought to myself.

Now you, I said to the other …
He looked down, away, thinking, perhaps,
Himself not so handsome as the first.

I gulped my bourbon while he sipped his.

You, I said to the other …
I could lay beside you night after night,
Talking, giggling, listening to all your secrets,
All your thoughts, every hope and every dream.
I could lay beside you and explore your skin
With my hands,
First with just my fingertips,
Then my palms,
Then the whole of my hands,
both of them,
each of them,
one after the other,
night after blissful, endless night.

You, I said …
I could look into your eyes
And seek out every story that made them weep,
Every glimmer that sparked each laugh.
I could touch your lips and listen to every word they’ve been afraid to speak all your life,
Until you met me.

I could hold your hand through every fearful moment
And jump with joy in every extraordinary time.

I could watch the spotlight grow over you,
ever brighter,
and stand beside you to
cherish you,
celebrate you,
support you,
encourage you through all the hard,
laugh with you to fight the pain,
hold you up through all the exhaustion and all the shame.

You, I said …
You I could spend so many of my days with,
So many of my nights with,
So much of my life with.
You, I could love.

A tear slipped past his mouth as a smile curled his lips.

You, he said …
I already do.