I look back through Novemember’s
just-hanging-on leaves, the negative space
of our promises to drive through Malabar’s
winding road, taking in October’s blasts of color.
The weeks have whipped by, the leaves ignoring my
requests to stay, to never fall away, and my melancholy
drips bitter without the sweet.
Then I see our love’s first fruits hanging
on you, lying on you like so many apples,
our children’s morning sweetness, their bodies’
hard softness, wild hair, pokey elbows,
squishy bellies and meaty feet. They grow
unconditionally from our branches, buds,
and blossoms. They grow their own stems and leaves
and seeds and develop their own autumn flavors.
We drop away when we are ripe
thankful for what we are
what we have
and what we miss.
I see the water-filled sky
and its broken light; I see its
clouds, swept milky-white.
We’re practicing looking up,
looking out and up
rather than forward and down,
and it’s working,
I’m almost seeing through
is a fluttering life lived imperfectly
within the vastness of
God’s big heart.
We make this life together,
our own dusty prints over the road;
our own hands making up
and turning down the beds;
our own mouths tasting
the bitter and the sweet, the salty and the sour;
like Rumi’s chick pea and cook,
we are each other’s teacher,
hitting each other with the skimming spoon,
boiling in our passions and in our sufferings,
in our mysteries and in our unknowings.
And these baby chick peas
we think we are cooking; they are
cooking us, the little gurus, the little lights,
the little creatures bedazzling our tapestry,
its bedraggled edges torn through sleeplessness
and sorrows. We are all jumping in and out
of this blessing pot together, our understanding
deepened and flavored, our love seasoned and spiced.
Our beds warmed and cooled; you are my blanket,
I am your pillow; they our comforters, we their bed.
Our footprints pressing deep and creating distinction.
We carry each other over the road, through the joys.
Christ within us, keeping together.