That quiver at the corners of her lips, that nervous tick, quickly covered, that first hint of an expression only squinting eyes can see, spends as much time simply being as considering what its purpose might be.
That uneasy moment once begun, so quickly undone – but never truly undone – is enough for me to know that with every word she speaks, her silences grow, filling in the sound with silence, our conversations with ghosts, our intimate moments so quickly coated in dust and comments unsaid that it is quickly becoming impossible to read the parts of us still unread.
My soul is a sunflower blossoming yellow petals and bittersweet seeds that crackle under the tongue or the heat of the sun, its withering leaves brushing together mindlessly, like lost memories.
My body is a green stem that holds my sunflower soul skyward despite the presence of birds and the danger of breezes that might pull loose some crackly seeds at any moment, casting them to the dirt below.
maybe to grow maybe to grow
maybe to rest for a time in my hollow shadows we may never know
“The swiftest horse cannot overtake a word once spoken”
– Chinese Proverb
Be wary what leaves your lips in anger or in passion, for by fractions those words fashion your reality – for better or for worse, for worse or for better. Not a thing can be unaffected that is touched by these words once spoken.
Once silence is irreparably broken it can never be repaired without scars and you can never unmake words, Not with the swiftest or surest hand, Nor the tightest fist, Nor with the softest kisses laid across ears that cannot un-hear your words.
The heart heals itself like skin, suturing along its frayed lines, each stitch creating new scars so that even in health there remain traces of brokenness, faceless faces, stitched together smiles, a hollow reflection of what was once beautiful with eyes that will never look at you the same again.
A word once spoken does not collapse in the desert, bone tired and sweat drowned, nor does it cry out, legs mangled under the weight of racing the universe, chest heaving. It rises like hot air, borne from the earth into the clouds to rain a harsh and toxic rain over unsuspecting heads while you sit watching the rain in the distance, knowing what you have done.
The longest sunset pours over the world’s edges like a waterfall.
The horizon tries in vain to wrap its golden-yellow arms around every inch of the globe, dipping its hands in as many oceans and running its hands along the sides of as many mountains as it can reach. Even on this day, the other side of the mountain remains out of reach and the ocean only gives up some of its depths to horizon hands.
The shadows lengthen under the spectrum sunset in contradiction.
The shadows pace further from their homes on that day than on any other, their feet borne beyond the safety of their usual haunts, as if taunting the sunset at its inability to destroy the darkness. Even the shortest, the weakest, the brightest of nights is announced by the darkest of shadows. While the ground melts into nothingness, the sky is on fire.
Look up at the fire as though there is nothing else – to know you’re alive.