NPM: Siren Song– Denouement

I am a siren still

And I sing the only song I know

Tenuously suspended

in a liminal space

Part woman, part bird

Flighty, I abhor a cage

And my sharp eye

and flitting bird-heart

Fear its confinement

But perhaps I have shed

A few of these feathers

and become more wholly

a person, not a fable

I sing and hope

for one who knows the perils

and dares anyway

to approach my jagged coastline

To take my hand, taloned as it is

and bear my flaws

Lead me not to a cage,

but to a horizon

And hear me, truly

hear me

Because I sing the only song I know:

My own.

 

NPM: Endures

I cannot stop loving the stars

Though I have never

in all my life

seen them fill the sky

They have always been

partially hidden

by smog or clouds

or city lights

But I dream of how they look

if I only had the eyes to see them

and they are glorious

swirling through the black emptiness

a sonata of energy

galaxies spinning, expanding

colors so vivid

they can’t be real

And perhaps it is the fact

that I have not seen them–

not gotten the chance to

get accustomed to the wonder–

perhaps that is why

my love for them endures

NPM: Not Yet

Let me not be satisfied

to the point of apathy, lethargy

It is the wanting that beautifies us

The longing, the dreaming

The hunger to be more

to be greater

to be filled

These are given us by God

to pull us out of ourselves

and into eternal joy

An endless pouring out

only to be replenished

This beautiful desire

for the glorious

will be fulfilled

But not yet

Not yet

NPM: Jack and Joy

Inspired by C.S. Lewis’ “A Grief Observed,” in which he chronicles his own grieving process after losing his wife Joy to cancer.

 

A grief that feels like fear

The tight fist of a heart

The sudden cold sweat

Short, shallow breaths

And the edginess of being pursued

The awful moment of waking up in the night

And wondering why the world feels so wrong

That confusion then being eclipsed

By the horror of remembering, realization

 

 

Colors really are flat

Friends once thought charming really are dull

Conversations that might have been interesting

Are now so much empty, grating air

Full of sound and fury,

Signifying nothing

Because when you left,

You took it all with you

 

 

It terrifies me to think

I might regress to the

Pitiful creature I was before you

Before I knew what it was

To be loved by you

And what it was to love you

Even now I feel the creeping thought–

“Maybe it won’t be so bad.

See? You almost felt normal for a moment there.”

Not so bad without a beating heart

Without sight or taste

Not so bad to float in a numb haze,

Only periodically pierced by a thousand hot knives

 

 

I let myself remember you,

But your face is a blurred smudge

How could it be otherwise?

I saw it from every angle,

Gripped with every possible emotion

One image in memory

Could never capture it

Your eyes– I can’t quite recall the color

Only the feeling

And that alone reduces me

to a whimpering child

NPM: Nothing Is Wasted

Every day I stumble

On the road to somewhere

My knees are bloodied

My palms scraped raw

But nothing is wasted

Every embarrassment

Every hesitation

Every doubt overcome

Every ounce of pain

And disappointment

It is all transformed

And used for my good

Nothing is wasted

 

Every day I push myself up

On the road to somewhere

A moment of fortitude

An exertion of will

And nothing is wasted

Every unseen victory

Every unspoken hope

Every secret generosity

Every well-done task

And unrecognized potential

They are all accounted for

And acknowledged by God

And nothing is wasted

NPM: Words Are Not Enough

Tonight the blank page is not my friend,

and all my words seem tawdry

when I try to talk about the things that matter.

Yes, I can describe the beauty of a leaf:

its gilt edges, delicate webwork of veins.

But I know of more than leaves and light

and those things, I cannot say.

I drop a stone down the deep well of my heart

and I hear, far below,

an echo, a splash.

There is a spring of fresh water there

but I cannot draw it up,

not with this leaky bucket of words.

There is so much I want to tell you

but I can’t get to the meaning.

So let me say one thing at a time,

and let me say it simply.

Today, I prayed

and someone was there.

And all I asked was,

“Do you love me?”

And despite everything,

the answer was yes.