Come now and rest

trees and sky

The trees are welcoming me back
and the dust from which I was created
my flesh, failing me from too many nights
no sleep, too many words, not kept
and my lack of care has brought me here

The dirt says–come now, be still
rest here where no one will harm
I am soft and forgiving; I will not push back
when you lay over me seeking rest
your heart stilled by serial killers–

The ones we know, we all know
take your soul and they won’t let go
moving on to others, despite my best effort
to hold them here, but I tired, got so tired
leaves surround me, weaving a blanket

The sky watches, the clouds in their misty wisdom
call upon the Father to bless. I know
He sees all, he sees me, when I long for home
and home’s not best. Don’t fail me now
warm hay, soft fur. Take me back

where I came from, take me back
where I was born, this pure, safe place
bring me back to forest,
and dust and dirt
and home

*

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.”
Matthew 11:28

*

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Sum of my parts

I was composed by
Dickinson and Poe
Ingalls and Alcott
Cummings and Keats;
A pen with the ink of
Matthew, Mark, Luke
John, Ringo, George
And Paul, the apostle;

Shaped by the lashes
of a leather belt
and overcooked vegetables
with Sunday roast, and
endless vats of gravy
poured into cups

put food on the pain
eat until you’re stuffed;

Composed by Rock of Ages
What a friend we have in Jesus
sung by saints and the
pure-of-heart-
wife-beaters-closet bigots
friends and adulterers;

Unexpected kindnesses
wrapped in Jean Naté
and Chanel No. 5
a soft, wrinkled hand
with hard candy
wrappers that crinkled
during the prayer;

Constructed by long rainy walks
endless nights without sleep
teachers that saw through me
a welcome friend
in the middle of the heat;

Each cell, every organ complete
I won’t deny any of them
for to remove the painful limbs
would cause the others
to fall apart;

So I walk on
head up-chin out
this is me
take me or leave me
this is who I am
a sum of my life

Until I am done
I’m coming Grandma
some day-to sit next to you
and hear the rest of the stories

Of how we were all
written-prodded
stewed, and shoveled
into what we are