Blood, wetness, redness, cold–
I frantically check the night air around me
I try to breathe you in, inhale you
But I am inside
alone in my bed.
I get so confused sometimes.
It’s supposed to be
back to business as usual,
and it is for everyone around me
I am left holding the burden alone now
Carrying it, carrying you
and my arms ache.
Blood from old scars runs down my arm,
and falls gently off my fingers.
It splatters into a funny pattern on the floor
I feel like I’ve seen before.
Nothing is normal.
Normal is not a word I can process anymore.
There are others, too, that have slipped off the pages —
Hope, faith, excitement, joy.
None of them come out of my mouth well anymore.
The choking stops them.
The bitterness of fatigue and resentment
lodges a deformed spirit in my throat
that shoves those words down.
Down into my stomach,
deep into the sacral space
whose edges have been snipped off.
Like someone has popped a balloon
and dared me not to ooze out.
I’m sore from clenching a soul
I did not want to release
to let go
into the unknown.
I turn to look behind me
in front of me, inside me
under ancient rocks and between the palms
of praying children
wherever I might find you.
Who I loved before your first cells divided
before your heart knew to start beating
before the stars invited you
to join with them in the sky
It is that sky I look to the most.
Evenings when shades of gray
and tiny dots of light
seem to wrap their arms
around a lonely moon
I smile gently to myself
knowing those stars are always present
that darkness is just space without light.
that death is just the body without its soul
that what is real, exists
whether my eyes recognize the form,