So, some amazing friends of mine are publishing a zine called Crowned by Star and Sky. It’s gorgeous and scholarly and interesting and wonderful. You should check it out, just in general. AND, in a burst of shameless self-promotion, I’m also going to mention that I made a piece of work that is included in the latest issue (and was even used for cover art! woot!).
But you should check out both published issues because there’s lots of other great stuff in there. Plus, you should consider submitting something for future issues! For real.
Would that I could quell this restless longing, it will not leave me be.
Like a stormy sea it rises and falls, pushing me far beyond the ken of land. In truth, I have been so long without, I cannot aver its actuality. I know not whether I would even recognize my own landing, since sands are just as shifty as the sea.
Hanging above me in silent benevolence, the moon illuminates my intemperate journey, describes an erratic path through this swell of inchoate desires. She is cool, remote, unmoved by any appeal; no longing disturbs her mild countenance as she gazes down through mist and spray to the teeming souls of earth.
Above, not among, she smiles at me. I know that I am animal, not celestial, and yet I am. Both.
The gravity of knowing pulls at my molecular bonds, rattling my heart in my chest and the thoughts in my head. It does not rest easy in my body.
I believe that enlightenment is the integration of disparate forces of material and numina, but to achieve it I needs must put aside my desire. Desire is sticky and clings to my fingers, it is beautiful and sad, lilting and radiant, and I can resist all but temptation.
That is a lie, I resist temptation at every turn. So deeply that my muscle memory has forgotten how to accede, though my heart remains a wild beast banging against the bars of its cage and roaring to no one. I muffle it as best I can with shrouds of circumspection while the roaring in my ears grows still deeper, a vibrato note that tingles in my teeth and fingertips.
Little beast in my body, lie quiet. Rest with me in this sea of stars until we come upon a welcoming shore, until the gentle murmur of earth ripples softly over us, until the breath of bird wings fills the silence and joy substantiates.
And then be free.
How many doors open, how many doors closed?
Moving through them each by each, sometimes you cannot tell until you get there
Sometimes I fear there are no more open doors
Sometimes the intractable shutness is cool water on a burn
Denial and affirmation elaborate their swirling dance as summer builds
Another summer, another spin, another tumble toward dissolution
Green shoots are rumoured to follow
Which door will that be?
This uneven ground is rife with hazards. No matter how many have trod it before the road never seems worn to smoothness by the cumulative footfalls of so many broken hearts.
I oscillate between striding with purpose and aimless shambling. I get lost. I stumble. I curse and cry and throw things occasionally. I spend a lot of time alone, and trying to change that pattern is both welcome and not all at once. In still moments I attempt to pry the mashed and damaged bits of my own heart from this bloody road, cleaning off the dirt as best I can. There are small stones embedded in tender places and I can’t seem to free them without causing further damage so I leave them to be healed over. In time, with hope.
Hope is a bitter, sorry Band-Aid and I often begrudge it space in my house, though I don’t seem to have the heart to banish it entirely. It whispers sweet nothings in my willing ears, but is never around at two in the morning. It is fickle and inconstant and its presence is as painful as its absence and how I wish it would just die. Still I can’t let it go.
Freedom does indeed sometimes feel like just another word for nothing left to lose, but I would not go back. Even as paychecks fall short and expenses loom large and loneliness echoes through my body I would not go back. Freedom is my anchor and deliverance my guide as I trudge through the acrid smell of decay toward an ineffable brighter tomorrow. Too weary for optimism, too stubborn for surrender. Tomorrow tomorrow tomorrow.