expecting (adj).

there was a seed planted and
the soil was well kept
the sun shone fondly and
the water made a soft bed.

we have waited
and prayed
we got up at dawn
we dug our nails into the dirt.

this keeps us up all night: we did everything right. 

we look to our neighbours: mary, how does your garden grow?

what life is this
except to give new life
and find life
in the middle of an empty field. 

simultaneous (adj).

here is what there is to say about the lost and the living:

are we not both
saved and
being saved

are we not both
cracked and
healing

are we not both
tied and 
free to go

are we not both
burdened and
light

are we not poor
in our wealth
but perhaps rich
in health
in vision
in hope
in Love

at any given time
are we not
incredibly confused
and also
incredibly lucky?

Scoop up your mess and
put it out in the yard
all of our closets look the same. 

Are we not all
trying to get to work on time
and
waking up tired
and
buying coffee for a lover
and
feeding the children
and 
asking questions with no answers
and
making a life
and a name
and 
revelling
in how beautiful
this all makes the task of breathing?

misuse (n).

did we know what we were doing
and what was even said
in all of that talking we do
what do we think we're getting done
what
do we think
with all our pacing
and timing
and editing
and editing again
with all of our strategies
and hesitating
and waiting
and holding back

and withholding

with all our over sharing
with all our imposing
with all our littering and tearing down and
all our waiting in line.

we spend a lot of time
doing not much at all. 
we spend a lot of time
looking away from
and only looking to
and not looking at
anything ripped with tragedy
but also anything completely magnificent.

how often do we miss it
how small we are
and how beautiful it is
to be here, together

selah (n).

often I think about the Maker
and lately:
is this what you had in mind?

do You worry
about the way it's all leaning
and the way it appears to be going
and all the things we do
to keep ourselves busy
to keep ourselves feeling important
to keep ourselves feeling like we are in control

what do You see
in us
and do You see
 what's to come?
and what kind of story are you writing
why such an epic
and why all the secrets
and why
must we flail around so?
 

teeming (adj).

These days
this circles:
could I be 
more full?
could I have
more gratitude?
could there be
more love?
It all abounds
it wouldn't fit
except to spill it 
down the street
and fill the bathtub
and drink it up
like we drink 
our coffees 
on the porch -
more please,
one more,
 

study (v).

In the morning when we start to wake
I trace your outline with my hands
like when we were kids, we learned to draw like that. 
I am taking note
of the spine that holds you up
and the skin that holds you in
of the map of the lines of your brow
and the purse of your lips when you look at the clock.

And then, my head on your ribcage
your heart in my ear
and all the way through me.
We learn to feel, like that. 

indicate (v).

All you need to ask yourself 

whether in the morning as you are stirring yourself awake
whether looking into the eyes of your love
whether quieting yourself trying to decide what next to do
whether in the uncomfortable stillness in the everyday
whether in everything that is difficult and hard
whether considering setting it all on fire and starting back at the beginning
whether tucking yourself in at the end of your day, laboured and long, or easy,

is, "is there peace here?"

and that will quickly make things quite clear. 

way (n).

You appeared and
I began to write it down,
and I’ve kept every note.

I want to be an expert
on the way your hair falls
and the way your head turns
the patterns of your sleep
and the sound of you waking.

I know you enough to paint your laugh
and sing with your worries
and curl up with your quiet

I know every time you’ve shaken your head
at all the ways I try to show you
all the ways you make me light.

If I read it over (which I do, each day)
I see how easy it was to love you
from the very start
and in these ways:

like the sound of the wind in the grass from where you came
a constant rustle and sway
like our ankles in the water, washed by the coast
like the space between sleep and waking

like the song that swelled in me when I met you
and hasn’t left me since. 
 

[commissioned by Jon for Nicole; happy birthday! xo].

mother (n).

A few glimpses of mum that come to mind are these: 

That there was always a blanket laid on the living room floor when dinner was a picnic in February, when Narnia was read by the fire, on the floor where we learned to read. 

The smell of her room when she is getting ready (that smell of eye liner pencils and palettes of eyeshadow and blush). I would peak in, slightly mesmerized by the process and also her grace. 

Clamouring out of the pool exhausted, dripping, she was dry, and gathered me in her lap. 

Amy Grant blaring when she would mop the kitchen, 90's hair in full swing and in a scrunchie, windows open, "ask me just how much I love you, you are starlight, I'm Galileo." And also: years later, going in to Chapters and mum returning Amy Grant's memoir because it was just that boring. 

In the few months after school was done and I lived at home, our sweet morning ritual, drawn out cups of coffee, how could we have so much to say? 

And all of the times I have been quiet because of maybe doubt or embarrassment, fear, she always knows, and always calls. How did you know?
"I always know. You lived in me." 

Posted on May 10, 2015 and filed under the word project-.