Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Intervention: Tomorrow, the Kingdom

I am here today because I love you.
You have a disease and this is how it affects me.

I wanted to believe, to be like you and place one
foot one small step in front of another, but I have seen
the body dredged from the waters, the worms that spill
like seeds upon the shore.

What had those eyes seen before they were food
for the crabs? Was it always green fields?
The covenant between a young girl and the flowers,
the animals: to everything a name and we blossom

to fill the space of those words. The soft spray
of the surf nothing more than kiss upon innocent
skin. And then what was first? The mistaken moment
when she uttered the word: riptide? Or did the waves

sing their songs of a home unbounded by shores?
Did she believe standing there with a stranger under
the moon that both could feel at home? But certainly
one or both must be away from home. Exactly who

was whose guest to be worked out over tea. But then
who would make the tea? And who would remark,
“Oh this is lovely. And I do love what you’ve done
with the portico.” Then perhaps she goes to name the sea

and the sea informs her that it has its name. The sea
is not angry. It asks her name. She has never given
herself a name; so, she asks the sea to give her one.
The sea gives her the only other word it knows—

a word with no meaning to the sea: diminishing.
At first the girl is pleased, but as she blossoms, grows
into it, she feels less and less herself. She returns to
find the birds have flown away. The lamb consumed

the clover field, the wolf the lamb, the hunter the wolf,
the industrialist everything else. Soon she finds there
is no place like home. She sheds crocodile tears into the sea.
“What is wrong?” asks the sea. “I am less and less—diminishing.”

The sea is sorry to hear the words, but can offer no relatable
anecdote for with every tear the sea increases. “Can I come
with you? Is there another home that I may enter?” she asks.
“Of course,” the sea says, “for as long as you want and longer.”

But she will always be diminishing. And when she finally
returns home, she is no more. You ask me to have faith
that the waves will hold me. I cannot. My mother, my father
before me were both diminishing. I will remain in the boat

and be tossed by the turbulent waves. Perhaps, in your eyes,
I am diminishing and with me your faith in me.
The others—those who you did not ask to walk with you—
they whisper. I hear their words; they sound strange to me.

They blossom into silence, silence that lingers between us.

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