“Let yourself be gutted. Let it open you. Start here.” ― Cheryl Strayed

Photo by Andrew Mckie on Pexels.com


A breath is kept,

Rules were bent.

A sadness spread

Inside me,

Warm and pasty.

Pulled a part like petals.

Suspended in air like a perfectly plumed bird.

Painted in the cold night of my eyelids.

I wanted anything but silence.

Gulls screeched to empty clouds.

Slow drugged insects hummed,

The white, sterile afternoon,

The air hummed,

The world felt like the eternal waiting room.

Nurses smiled at me, still hopeful.

My eyes pale, drained, useless.

The color of waiting is seasonsless

You watch everything


Soap bubbles,

The soot from chimneys and city curbs.

You fight back.

You tune out the breathe ticking clock,

You rock in the darkness,

You stop playing by the rules.

You watch newborns fingers curl

Like petals of soft white orchids.

You find your safe place in ruins.

You sit on a porch in a row of identical brick buildings

Where it is always winter

And there is no key.

You ring the doorbell.

You pound on the windows.

You stop being able to find simple things to say,

So inside you start screaming and never stop.

Then suddenly,

You catch yourself giving breath away.

You stop and save it.

You’ll take it to the hospital.

You’ll breathe it into her.

You won’t listen when they say ‘you need sleep.’

You will stay draped across her like a sheet.

You will wait till she feels the June wind you breathed into her,

Full of strawberries, and lavender hillsides

A ripening and blooming of the world

That says,

Feel how much I miss you.

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