My mind is a grey, hazy morning. One eye open to treetops cowering at the sight of rain. Pounding on sidewalk till the concrete browns. One eye closed as the world news passes for a ticking clock. There’s always a build up before a standstill: in music, a crescendo.
You headed east to find adventure. “The world feels wide open,” you used to say. “I want it to swallow me whole.” I never understood you. With your big eyes hungry, your heart made easy. You were always so dramatic. Swallowed whole, like the world had been waiting for you all along. Open, as if there was an insatiable need for your beautiful, dark face somewhere. I’m only sorry that I was never able to love you properly. All consuming, eloquently.
We landed in the middle of a heat wave and were told to stay inside the lines. Climbing down a stairway from heaven into paradise, our eyes burned bright from the colour. Viridian and ultramarine, it was as if we’d been blind all along and were suddenly made to see.
I remember slow dancing in the water. Kicking up sand as we shuffled along the blue ocean floor. When we grew tired we would float close enough together to anchor ourselves from the push, pulling tide. Rest under an ever burning star. On shore sometime later, covered in freckles and drenched in love, I kissed you and tasted salt water.
She has this mark above her navel. A beauty spot. It’s round and dark, anchored and celestial and I tell her it’s my North Star. “Belonging or relating to heaven.” She laughs her sweet laugh and asks me if I’ve ever been lost. Bewildered. “Second to the right, straight on till morning.”
Write your name in the sky, sing your song to the heavens. Every lark is born unsure (unaware) of how to fly. Every sparrow. The nest may seem a long way up (long way down) from someplace, somewhere but it’s something. Call it home. Call it yours. Call it practice for the real thing, the big thing that pulls us out of our selves and demands that we be ready. Able. Beautiful and strong to move through with purpose.
“Close those eyes. One day, star. You and I dream in living colour because life is a palette of intake and output. It favours the brave. L I S T E N when I tell you to burn for something more than warmth. Strive. What is freedom? It’s what happens when you divide risk by courage. Rounded out chances (sometimes you pray). Be ready to run.”