“Lord, we pray this day mindful of the sorry confusion of our world. Look with mercy upon this generation of your children so steeped in misery of their own contriving, so far strayed from your ways and so blinded by passions. We pray for the victims of tyranny, that they may resist oppression with courage. We pray for wicked and cruel men, whose arrogance reveals to us what the sin of our own hearts is like when it has conceived and brought forth its final fruit.
We pray for ourselves who live in peace and quietness, that we may not regard our good fortune as proof of our virtue, or rest content to have our ease at the price of other men’s sorrow and tribulations.
We pray for all who have some vision of your will, despite the confusions and betrayals of human sin, that they may humbly and resolutely plan for and fashion the foundations of a just peace between men, even while they seek to preserve what is fair and just among us against the threat of malignant power.”
from Reinhold Niebuhr (1892 – 1971)
i don’t want to have you to fill the empty parts of me.
i want to be full on my own.
i want to be so complete i could light a whole city.
i want to have you.
cause the two of us combined could set it on fire.
you are a horse running alone
and he tries to tame you
compares you to an impossible highway
to a burning house
says you are blinding him
that he could never leave you
want anything but you
you dizzy him, you are unbearable
every woman before or after you
is doused in your name
you fill his mouth
his teeth ache with memory of taste
his body just a long shadow seeking yours
but you are always too intense
frightening in the way you want him
unashamed and sacrificial
he tells you that no man can live up to the one who
lives in your head
and you tried to change didn’t you?
closed your mouth more
tried to be softer
less volatile, less awake
but even when sleeping you could feel
him travelling away from you in his dreams
so what did you want to do love
split his head open?
you can’t make homes out of human beings
someone should have already told you that
and if he wants to leave
then let him leave
you are terrifying
and strange and beautiful
something not everyone knows how to love
– Warsan Shire
They fashioned a tomb for you, holy and high one,
Cretans, always liars, evil beasts, idle bellies.
But you are not dead: you live and abide forever,
For in you we live and move and have our being.
When did you first learn that love was the wind
That seasons and fashions and politics would change
And so would he
That you could only trust his arms for a moment
That kisses could melt away faster than carnival day cotton candy
Sister, tell me
Who taught you that love was water,
Always looking to spill out of your clasped hands
Or evaporte into thin air
Who told told you to distrust the sound of affection?
To believe that everyone leaves in the end?
Where does this memory lie?
Who fed it until it grew so ghoulish and real?
When will you let love in?
When will you start to see that his embrace is eternal?
When will you let his words rest in the small of your back
In the pit of your stomach?
When you hear “I love you” and believe it – no questions asked?
Let those who love you love you
Let light shine through yonder window
Through darkened night
Into the deep and locked away place in your heart
Let those who want you have you
No more chasing after shadows of what if
Meet the one running towards you
Let what is yours be yours
Like the timber of his voice
The soft and woody smell of his shirt that lingers
Let it warm you
Remind you that, while it may not be so all over the world,
In this corner of brick and steel
In this patch of cotton and spice
You will always be worthy of love
I want to go back to the days when I thought 30 was ancient,
when the best part of my week was crispy crust pizza day,
when nothing mattered but this place,
There was no longing for better.
Better was already here.
There was no questioning if someday.
That someday had already come.
I was certain I would be something, when the time came.
I was never anxious,
I wish I was as cool as I was at 7.
I wish I was as certain as I was at 12.
I wish I could silence the fear that I might never amount to anything at all and remember the days of counting down to snowfall and crispy crust pizza
and knowing everything would turn out alright.
“But if these years have taught me anything it is this: you can never run away. Not ever. The only way out is in.”
― Junot Díaz, The Brief Wondrous Life of Oscar Wao