Damage

Damage is a funny thing

How it trickles and pools into every aspect of your being, your life

Like an infestation, crowding in the dark places

Scattering to the crevices and cracks when the lights are turned on

But always ready to creep back out in the quiet still of night

Damage does not respect the boundaries of the recipient

Rather, it uses connections and lineage like a deep root system

Permeating relationships and soaking into offspring like a malignant mental cancer

After all, the source of damage cannot be defined in self

It is a legacy of our very beginnings

Passed on and on through time and history

And if we, the individual, make a choice to eradicate, to attempt to heal the cracked and broken places inside

Our remedy will seep and flow in much the same manner as the damage, but it cannot kill the blight altogether

It can only staunch the flow from one

It is up to the others, the tainted, the tinged, to lead the cure through

To milk it on to the next

Free will must make a choice at each checkpoint or the blot will continue to spread.

Still, if we, you, I-can just take a bit of that tidal wave of hurt away

Make it ebb in slight recession

It is worth the cost

The price of forgiveness

Paid once by one

May now be given by all

Posted in damage, forgiveness, God, healing, Past, Poetry, Renewal, Trauma | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Entrench

In the muddy trench that we have dug

Where we lie low together

I know I’m not alone

But vanity of vanities

That death buzz deep inside of me

Suffocating monotony

And ricochet of day to day

I am here alone

I raise my head in desperate plea

Where above me there are golden strings

Like spider webs, glistening

Pulsating in arterial melody

Mary beads of hope

And if I turn myself around

And reach my hands up to their sound

Pulling blue sky heaven down

I can strum along

It is orchestral, symphonious, operatic in its majesty

And when I hear that harmony, I know I’m not alone

All this suffering, this sacrifice-we are not alone

So I turn back around, to pull you up into the sound

And find you lifeless on the ground

Face down in your despondency

And as quickly as it is realized

My fear is made reality

I want to believe that I too will die, that without you I’m undone.

And I am

Undone from zip to fingertips

But I know I will go on.

When all hope is lost and all is dark

I will still go on

I will hold you close and breathe you deep

And then I will go on

Vanity of vanities! I am all alone.

“We are all in this together, we are all in this alone.”*

In this muddy trench that we have dug

None of us alone

*Pierce Pettis-Just Like Jim Brown

Posted in Blue, covid, depression, God, Lost, Love, Poetry, Trauma, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

A poem for my mother

La Chinita

Dark haired girl, dark eyes stare out to the sea

But she could not see

Here on her little island, high upon this hill

Where you can almost see everything

Thunder rolling in the future

Her future

So many miles away

A hundred miles away from everything

A hundred miles across the sea

 

Dark eyes, soft eyes close against the warm breeze

Warm against brown skin, warm on tiny shoulders

Her little bare shoulders-so small and so free

Free from the weight that they will bear,

Barely able to bear it

They will still bear it

But for today, she has her island, her home, her family

And, the sweetest face, the softest cheek teaching her to Hail Mary.

Hail Mary! You too knew tragedy.

Yes, none knew it better than you.

 

La Chinita runs back home

Home to Abuelita, to brothers, to Papi, to Mami

Home, to where arms will reach and hold her close

And gently lay her down to sleep

She sleeps in peace

Holds the days in memory

These days and nights before the journey

Her journey across the sea

Where she will wait. And wait and wait.

Sent so far to keep her safe.

 

 

But little girl will only know that she is scared, she is alone

And foreign eyes will look on her, but little girl they will not see.

While in the night, she cries and cries

Cries for her island, her home, for her family.

Still child, be still

Across an ocean of time she may hear me

And know that I see her, there in the night

So I whisper her comfort of things to be

 

La Chinita, listen.

You must wait a long, long time, for them, for me

But you won’t wait forever

This won’t be forever.

And you will be loved forever.

And one day, someday- your little island will be free

 

Posted in Lost, Parents, Past, Poetry, Trauma, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Adoration

Here. Where the veil hangs so thin. Ripples and waves in time

Here. The tree of Jesse, pierced and broken-for me, for you

Here. A fountain, a river, a waterfall, doth pour forth in white watered glory and rushes over me

Here. In my humanity the might is diminished; I am not crushed

Here. I am renewed and every cell drinks in the rich mercy of our Lord

Here. I see my own tree. Every branch connecting us-even the ones I wished to prune

Here. From that endless fount I am enabled and pour out your mercy to my kin. Though mine does only trickle, through you it is sustained

Here, we are substained.

Posted in beauty, God, Love, Poetry, Renewal | 2 Comments

Communion

For a moment, I am like Krishna
The infinite universe in my mouth
A white hole where I might escape
Empty myself to take more in
But never emptied enough
And after, palms still burning
Oceans and oceans receding away
I will smile
For a moment
For the moment
I held God in my hands

Posted in Poetry, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

Sober

I am tossing myself into this rolling ocean of “What ifs”. The smallest and most insignificant of stones.
Still, my ripple may matter the most to someone, somewhere.
I am watching the world play out like some mixed up rom-com tragedy.
The profane and horrific intertwined so tightly with the glorious and good.
I am learning stillness as a world of purposeless fury and desperate indirection buzzes around me-realizing that nothing matters much here, except for Love, and that Love makes everything matter the most.
I am seeing how precious life really is. Beautiful and fragile. Yet it is the choices that shape us, birth us, and make us become. And life – at least as we know it -is only a cover to be shed when all seems lost.
I am frantically making up for lost time. A lifetime spent in self absorbtion and a daily race towards an inevitable demise, now slowing down to live in each moment, knowing it may be my last. Loving each person like they are already dead and feeling the greater love God has for us all, sinner and saint alike.
I am failing every day, but I don’t mind as much as I used to.
It seems to be much more about the try -I hope they will know how much I tried.
And if I  make it ( for all things are possible through God), if I can drown this old self inside, this wrinkled, stinking thing I used to think was me- raising up a Mary from a fallen Eve- then I pray that when I slip under for the last time, my final ripple may become a wave big enough to help push someone else, someone still struggling up on the surface, further up and farther in, and towards their way back home.
Posted in beauty, Blue, God, Love, Renewal, Uncategorized | 1 Comment

Morning Song

Who can describe a morning?
Who can tell you of the breeze blowing softly through your hair?
Of the dappled transcendence that occurs as you walk from shadow into sunlight and back into shadow again?
Whose words can give justice to the growing warmth of the rising sun against your skin as the coolness of the dawn passes into day?
The honey scents hanging in the air, the sounds of the birds in the sky and in the trees? How the culmination of sight, sound, feeling and thought cause the heart to grow tight with joy and float in dance as you are enveloped completely?

The finest of words, the most eloquent passages of speech can be no more than warm vapor.

Our involuntary emissions breathing death without conversion back to life by these green and good things it trys so desperately to describe.

And so God doth make a compliment from a contradiction and boundless beauty from our endless waste.

And in our silent reverence we too may enter into morning’s song.

Posted in beauty, God, Love, Nature, Poetry, Uncategorized | 1 Comment