the sun is sinking behind the mountain, shadows chasing each other across the rocks and grasses and hills across the valley as the warmth recedes, curling back into oblivion for another day like peeling paint. even the winds settle as the sun dies. for a few, breathless moments -- here; now -- the tranquility is unperturbed by all but the softest sounds -- birds singing lullabies, the whispers of gentle breathing (inhale, exhale), the slow, steady "drip, drip" from the kitchen (iron stains around the nozzle, condensation on the faucet), tentative fingers on piano keys. melodic chaos, remembrance and wonder and serenity in embracing familiarity; in loving the things that never change.
it is March. ice still lingers in the space between sunset and sunrise and there is a fire burning in the wood stove, flames licking at the wood, sparks spitting light into the chimney, smoke exhaled into the air. i taste woodsmoke on my tongue. it reminds me of summer. of heavy days and grass stains on the palms of our hands and dirt between the calloused furrows on our knees and hot dogs dripping grease into the fire and slapping mosquitos by the lake and watermelon juice dripping off our chins and innocent, careless joy flowering across our lips and sparking in our eyes. summer will be here soon. we realize this, even as the wind stretches our quaking souls thin, shoulders hunched against an entity of nature - beautiful and terrifying and awe inspiring, all, in its ferocity. summer is coming. we know this. even as the sun slips behind the mountain, plucking us out of warmth and hollowing our bones with the coming of another night, we remember what summer feels like; long lazy days and amber skies and freckles spread across our skin like the memories we hold in fragile hands, treasured like the first wildflowers that bloom in the lungs of spring.
i can see lights in the town from our living room. the house creaks, old bones complaining as the air cools, as water films over with ice, as benumbed hands seek for and find each other -- for warmth, for companionship, for the reassurance we all need that tells us we are not alone. my eyes are heavy, weighted, pulled down by the beautiful burden of living and loving and dreaming and being and trying, trying, trying. we once thought this was a deadly disease that plagued all of humanity, you know; a disease found amidst the efforts that go unrewarded, the struggles that go unnoticed, the aching that goes unalleviated. but no. this is simply life -- in some form or another, this aching, struggling, fragmented reality we find ourselves a part of is all that there ever was on earth -- and ever will be. the real disease is not the forced endurance of the struggle, or the struggle itself, but the end of it. we strive endlessly, but not without purpose. we weep in solitude, but we are not alone. this ache between our ribs -- this burden on our chests, this beauty our pain creates -- tells us that we're alive, that we have something yet to fight for, that there is hope for the remainder of our wandering. we search for splendor our entire lives, but maybe -- just maybe -- the true beauty is found in the knowledge we gain through pain, in the peace we find through our search, in the entirety of the journey itself, rather than the destination.
you hold so much beauty between your hands, my dear. there is still gentleness in the depths of your burdened soul. don't give up. don't give up. don't give up. you will get there. you will climb out of this valley, you will see the sun again, you will find the answers you are searching for -- but don't ignore the aching splendor of the sunset as you wait for the warmth of the sunrise.
fiction / non-fiction / thoughts and distracted memories over 6 hours // march 24th, 2016
i remember yesterdays like they are words written in stone, marked into concrete with fragile fingers and stamped onto crumbling bones.
i remember your face like it was in the soft morning light, lips as gentle as wildflowers in summer, eyes burning like stars in the night.
i remember what you once laughed at, and what it took to make you cry, how you promised to never leave me, and when those words became a lie.
i remember the things you'd whisper when you thought no one was near, words i used to hold and cherish and now cannot cease to hear. i remember the distance between us, and the pain you tried to hide, you always wished to drown your sorrow, but it was always you that died. i remember the day emptiness finally found a home in your eyes, when your dreams became memories, and all your hopes took to the skies. i remember the smell of you, for your ghost clings to my skin, fragmented pieces of what we are, and what we could have been. i remember what we used to be like the winter remembers the spring, before the shadows crossed your memory and your heart cut all its strings.
i remember when i lost you under the trees that autumn day, the leaves fell to mourn your absence as if they, too, wanted you to stay. i remember the warmth in your eyes before you learned how to run, and i still see you everyday in the light of the rising sun. i remember the night we met, the tangled fingers and amber skies, but sometimes the hellos we say are the beginnings of goodbye.
"breathe in. breathe out. do you feel the pull on your lungs? do you feel the ice in your chest? does your heart feel as if it might crack with the weight of feeling and loving and longing and losing and trying and being? do you grow weary of the fragmented shards of glass you are holding in bloody palms? are you tired of feeling broken?
don't be ashamed. we all are. i am.
but pain reminds us that we're alive; that we still have something to fight for, that we still have someone to love; that we still have someone who loves us. pain is there to drive us forward; to push us onward, to remind us that we're not lost, that the ache we feel might be the end of something we once loved and the beginning of something we will learn to love.
pain is difficult to understand, hard to bear, impossible to avoid. but if there was no rain, there would be no rainbows. if the earth never disappeared in darkness, there would be no sunrise.
and if there was no pain, how would be learn to appreciate beauty? embrace it. learn from it. let it change you, make you stronger, increase your will to fight. everything has a purpose. sometimes we just have to wait a while to see it." // (via instagram) // i wrote this yesterday on the spur of a moment, and when the words stopped flowing, i realized how long it had been since i'd sat down and simply wrote whatever came to mind. it's been a while. again. and this time, i'm not making any promises of future posts, or new poetry, or tales of my (extraordinarily ordinary, unexciting) life, but i have missed this place more than i thought possible, and all the people that are connected to it. i've missed the honest words, and the aching poetry and the raw, messy stories that i used to spend hours reading.
i want to get back to it. being here, reading my old poems, cringing at my poorly worded sentences, laughing over my attempts to be "cool"... it reminds me of when things were simpler; when life was straightforward, and people were open and honest and we all knew what we wanted to do, and where we wanted to go and how we were going to get there. at least, we thought we did. but part of the beauty and bittersweet novelty was in that innocence; in those impossible, glorious dreams.
no one ever told me growing up would look like this. no one told me it would hold so many questions in the form of people you've known all your life, or a time that was once looked on with fondness, or a circumstance that is somehow unfamiliar in its sameness.
nothing has changed with me. nothing exciting, or life altering, at least. i'm currently writing a novel, trying to find a part time job, playing music and reading as many good books as i can cram in, and life is ordinary and slow and tiring and beautiful and full of hope and promise. this growing up thing is terrifying, eh? exciting, but terrifying, and i guess i'm muddling through it as best i can.