Walk along, dear heart
and meet again the places that you’ve been.
Retell old stories of past steps.
Steps now covered in the shadows of those who feel they are alone.
their comforts out of reach,
while their exposed feet slide unsure into the impressions that your stumbling once left behind.
Their puzzled faces,
wrapped around minds which have not adjusted to the change they feel
yet cannot see.
For the dark clarity that swaddles their future selves, holds fast.
That unyielding darkness.
The great defender of the precious sublime,
not to be seen on this side of the mountain.
Walk along side them, dear heart.
Tell them that the dark keeps company with light
and protects it against any foe.
Old friends they,
taking turns at introducing themselves,
but dark comes first.
So stand with them, dear heart.
Stay close to those wanderers.
Stay until the light reassures its protector
that all is well.
Before her hope could run away,
before it could wrestle free from the need that had it surrounded,
before it could unravel the dreams it had made,
dreams sewn into place by the line that held together the horizon,
dreams that cinched the gap between earth and sky,
she clasped that hope in her hands.
Felt the weight of it buckle her knees.
Rethreaded what had come undone between laced fingers,
and laid her heart upon it.
And unwittingly found herself reenacting a scene from her childhood.
The picture of her younger self
learning the language of angels.
Clipped wings only made the sky heavier.
Only intensified the thought of what it would be like,
Clipped wings turned in, and folded against a mighty heart
that beat its fist against a coursing wind.
Then reached out to soar upon that same strength.
Though frayed and tattered,
clipped wings were an extension of the freedom they sought.
The innate desire for elevation.
Even clipped, they painted their purpose
in brushing strokes.
Fanning a faith that they could not see.
In an abandoned lot,
surrounded by fences holding nothing but what was,
the smallest flower grew in between cracks of pavement.
A spot of life at the foot of a dilapidated building.
Its color made brilliant in comparison to its grim surroundings.
Deep purple against grey,
against impossible odds,
against rubbled soil and concrete,
growing past the edge of shadow cast from crumbling walls.
Growing through crossing wire barriers that would keep out and hold in.
Holding to an instinct that called it to thrive.
It pressed toward the light.
Petals to the sun.
In the sweetest song of morning
her shadow leapt away, dancing.
With no more room to pull at tired feet.
No place to fit in this space where light flowed in from all sides.
No place to lay quietly alongside this brilliant hope reborn.
A hope that hovered in air, smothering the once eclipsing darkness.
Chasing off shadows.
Loosening their chains.
Setting them free.
No more search lights in the dark.
No more hounds in the distance, calling.
Now that morning light has found me.
She crept up slowly while I slept.
Traced me in a golden glow and opened my eyes.
She told me that I had mistakenly called her night, and had considered myself lost.
Deceived by my own heavy heart falling.
Confusing sadness for a setting sun, but the day had not yet left.
There was still time.
Chance tapped me on the shoulder – then hid.
She likes to play this game.
Keeping me guessing at which side she’ll show up on.
And when I turn my head to see her, she’ll move.
She does this so that I’ll keep my eyes open.
So that I won’t become idle.
She’ll even go so far as to leave traces of herself when she’s gone.
Making my skin tingle at the possibilities she leaves behind.
When something stirs inside of me, inspiring the notion of hope – that’s her.
When the light of morning pulls me out of slumber – that’s her.
Chance turns up with each consideration.
Quickening my pulse at the thought that we’ll meet again.
In the event that we’ll come face to face.
Constantly mindful of the moment if it should arrive.
And that’s just as chance would have it.