Monday, October 26, 2009

Gloves off

The time had come.
This night was different.

As she stood in the all-too-familiar ring, staring into the blank eyes of her opponent, she felt something within her change. Her clenched fists began to loosen, and before she knew it her gloves were falling to the floor. As if in slow motion, they fell to the ring floor, bouncing slightly as they met the floor covered with so many of her tears, sweat, and blood. And in that moment she was more aware of herself than she'd been in a long time. A voice within her bellowed loudly, "NO MORE." Her eyes ran from her bare hands to the opponent across the ring, and then she turned and slowly climbed out of the ring. The opponent quietly chuckled, having seen her leave the ring before, always to return. But this time was different; she left the ring that night without looking over her shoulder to see if anyone was chasing after her.

Free from the ring, she walks with her head held high, with a new sense of security; a security rooted within a long lost sense of self worth. Walking away has been the best decision she's made in a long time. She is finally happy.

The struggle is over.
She is worth more than that...
and finally believes it.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Unfamiliar Silence

These sea foam green walls are covered with the work of little artists. The warm Louisiana sun shines through the front windows.The familiar sounds of tools clincking against medal and Joe's voice carry in from outside. Every crack and corner of every room holds a sweet memory, and sitting here in the silence almost brings me to tears. This house holds a very important part of my past, and the people who fill it each day hold my heart.

Soon, the kids will dart up the stairs, pulling me away from my daydreaming, and act surprised when asked if they have homework. The silence will quickly evolve into an organized chaos of ABC's, time tables races, and complaints about completing homework.

But for now, for now I sit in silence and stare across the street at an old brick building which may just hold my next adventure...

Thursday, October 8, 2009

the empty moments

It doesn't interest me what you do for a living.
I want to know what you ache for
and if you dare to dream of meeting your heart's longing.

It doesn't interest me how old you are.
I want to know if you will risk looking like a fool
for love
for your dreams
for the adventure of being alive.

It doesn't interest me what planets are squaring your moon...
I want to know if you have touched the center of your own sorrow
if you have been opened by life's betrayals
or have become shrivelled and closed
from fear of further pain.

I want to know if you can sit with pain,
mine or your own,
without moving to hide it
or fade it
or fix it.

I want to know if you can be with joy,
mine or your own,
if you can dance with wildness
and let the ecstasy fill you to the tips of your
fingers and toes
without cautioning us to
be careful
be realistic
to remember the limitations of being human.

It doesn't interest me if the story you are telling me is true.
I want to know if you can
disappoint another
to be true to yourself.

If you can bear the accusation of betrayal
and not betray your own soul.
If you can be faithless
and therefore trustworthy.

I want to know if you can see Beauty
even when it is not pretty every day.
And if you can source your own life from its presence.

I want to know if you can live with failure,
yours and mine,
and still stand on the edge of the lake
and shout to the silver of the full moon,

It doesn't interest me
to know where you live
or how much money you have.
I want to know if you can get up
after a night of grief and despair
weary and bruised to the bone
and do what needs to be done
to feed the children.

It doesn't interest me who you know
or how you came to be here.
I want to know if you will stand
in the center of the fire
with me
and not shrink back.

It doesn't interest me where or what or with whom you have studied.
I want to know what sustains you
from the inside
when all else falls away.
I want to know if you can be alone
with yourself
and if you truly like the company you keep
in the empty moments.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Southern Rain

I miss the southern rain.

The moments on rainy days in which I would slip outside, into the quiet the porch offered...until the door would swing open and my name be uttered by a little voice, pulling me away from my thoughts and back into the house, back to UNO, Connect Four, checkers, and the little lives that hold my heart.

Hoping my outdoor friends had found shelter.

Blue plastic chairs in the carport. Moments treasured not for spoken words, but for the simple gift of presence.

Southern rain is different. It's more powerful--it begs you come and sit a while and listen to its sound, to let it speak to you. It's appreciated, and it gives you an excuse to stop, to slow down. Here, we put on our rain boots, pop open our umbrellas, let out a sigh, and trudge through it. When it rains in Shreveport, things slow down, sometimes to a stop. There rain is like an old friend; its presence is appreciated because its visits are sparse, and it always stays a while to catch up.

It's raining there tonight.
Boy, do I miss the southern rain.
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