Saturday, June 22, 2013

The Day Comes When I Will Ask No Longer

One recoils from the limestone ossuary - that image of first century heartbreak - and yet writes it anyway. For the heart of darkness resists light and yet light continues. And words, always words.

When we get close to want - not the object but the longing itself - we begin to perceive the outline of Christ. One sees the mandate of attention: and heeds it. Together we go further: is the responsibility clear?

I want her - in all the ways that wanting is cataloged - and am not condemned because of it. Cardinals cross the yard and rest on the fence and are beautiful. And in the distance one senses - but does not see, not yet - the waking deer, the depth of their awareness, and their hunger.

Through the mail he begs her to send him photographs, trying to explain how her image saves him - how deeply it affects him - and yet she will not do it. He lives with her refusal - and the shame of his wanting - even as she asks for - and takes, over and over - the gift of his sentences. He gives and waits: in brokenness and grief, he waits.

For so many women have loved me for what I write, the gift I can neither explain nor manage. Nor do they see me but only their own selves reflected in what is written and so ask for more, and more, and more. There was a monk once who wanted a little hut and a quiet companion with whom to pray but instead was made by his superiors to sing at every service and every event simply because his voice was lovely.

Who is lost looks to the body. I want her to lead now - to meet me in this place, this giving beyond boundaries, beyond logistics - and to lead so that I might rest. For I am so very tired of pointing the way and want only to rest: in the soft space of your heart, the secret space of us, may I?

Who knows what I need must give or else find another companion with whom to travel. For the day comes when I will ask no longer but simply go - alone - into the desert.

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