Him for Her

There was a cruel miscarriage of justice written in ash and embers. The amber glow of spent vigour twisted the vines that once hugged the old tree. Once brilliant with chlorophyll and teaming with life, the luminous veins were the symbol of a hope that lived before the sky summoned it’s executioner. Now ashen and frail they lay strewn amongst the blades of grass, robbed of vitality, bearing no semblance to there original beauty.

From the speckled screen of privilege, I was kept safe at a distance, watching the ruckus unfold. The storm would rile itself up with that thunderous call and response that claimed the stormy nights. The room would shake as the air, taught by the rain and imposing clouds, was cut clean by the limbs of lights that stretched down. Outside my looking pane, out of reach of the reality of it all, nature was claiming its dominion over nature. My mother told me that lightning never strikes the same place twice. I’ve heard the words repeated time and time again, now looking on at the remains of the old tree, smitten by the sky, I prayed the heavens would spare that patch of earth another bout of fury.

I can’t remember when it was that I stopped running from those thunderous claps. I never took note of the way the fear molded itself into fascination. I out grew the cowering and faced into the storm from the safety of my window. A veil clear enough to never hide whats there to see, but veil enough to to ensure I didn’t taste the sting of the moment.

The elements wear their emotions on there sleeves, never resigning themselves to the judgment of onlookers. The thunder has been praised and vilified, none of this had altered its readiness to do its bidding. Staring at the remains of the old tree I see that beauty has hidden bite, nature has hidden might, the sharp sparks of heaven could strike as marvelous, or touch upon earth with ugly hues of destruction. There is a pantomime of ether that will wind to unfold in unexpected endings, in unexpected beginnings, unexpected majesty and mourning.

 

 

There was a cruel a miscarriage of justice written in ash and embers. The amber glow of unchecked rage, rattled off in storms that ate away at her. Such jagged diction, then taken as norm, was gifted thoughtlessly until they touched on the sinews of that lone soul brave enough to stand tall in the open, weathering the storms.

I hate that I wasn’t the only one watching as another cloudy day claimed her smile as the hope that coursed her veins was claimed by thunder. Her voice was lost in the wash of a horse wind begging her to “Remember her place.”

“What place?” I thought.

Sadly I knew.

There are only so many storm that privilege can shelter me away from. With out the rain on my back I’m numb to the reality of the stand, I forfeit forever my watching post.

My sister. I will be counted in the forest that will grow around you. I will be there to stand by you when the world is all raindrops and fire. I will stand tall, rooted deeply, footing firm and far reaching so every storm will tread tentatively before washing the ground around you. She fights for her right to stand tall in the bitter air. She stands tall to outlive the roar of the witless lumberjacks chains, intent on binding her strength. I have watched those branches tapped for way too long, limbs leaking with majesty, bleeding your sustenance dry. Your crooked bark outlines the story that was written in silence, the broken Armour that recounts the nights fighting against the storm.

When the sky is all raindrops and fire, I promise to stand with you.

Writing 101, Day 4: Seriously lost 

 

We slip through this river of time together, I remember your faces. It’s a crowded place sometimes, at times its deadly silent, I don’t know where this current takes us, but I’m certain our journey’s end. We are never in the same place twice, that is the nature of this river, it is the beauty of time.

We start off with nothing, we leave with nothing, somehow somewhere in the middle we feel as though we’ve earned things, gained things, made things ours. Sometimes we hold tightly to everything we have, sometimes we lose a thing or two to the white wash of passing moments. Maybe we lose them because we couldn’t hold them tight enough, we were not strong enough. Maybe we lose them because we held on too tight, or maybe we lose  them because there was nothing to there hold on to in the first place. 

Loss is inevitable, I have lost and left a lot behind, I am familiar with the sudden sense of lacking. I’m not saying I am happy about losing, I’m not saying it has gotten easier with time, but I look at the losses differently now, I see what it is left, what it was I truly  lost. 

I never thought I was losing you when I dreamed of change. I assumed, I assumed you would follow, that you would finally see the visions I painted into our summers. I just assumed you’d always be that spontaneous voice on the other end of the phone, coaxing me out for another day under the sun, another day to settle our tumultuous spirits, away from where the world teased us into tightly clenched pockets of confusion. I miss always knowing your home was mine. I look back and call for you at times, I try to pretend you’ll come, but you only wave and smile at me, I guess that’s enough for now. 

I never thought I would lose you, my second in command, my partner on my every conquest. We took to life with the winds of youth at our wings, with the endless string of chances we thought we had ready at hand. They doubted us then, they are doubting us now, but still we cut our way against there negativity. It’s a shame that we seem to doubt each other now, just as much as they did us.

 I never thought I’d lose the stage that claimed our memories. Behind our closed doors we dreamed of building our legacies. I realised that I had to swim to build that dream, treading water has lost its allure. 

I remember our wildest nights. When the sun forfeited its flight, we did what they all did, we marched amongst the wild and free. I hated when the guise had worn thin, I could see the binds. I was taken by fear when I saw the truth, what I thought to be my freedom had held me captive. 

You were the faces of my memories, I forever hold you close. It is not because of lessened love that I appear to remain hidden. It isn’t you that I am leaving behind. I know that you have seen them, those troubling sparks inside me that have always burned brightly and coloured our conversations with something memorable. I want those flashes to be a beacon in the night. I will disappear into black, but I promise you’re not forgotten. Watch for the beacon and you will find me. I hope you have the patience to wait.

Sunrise

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My early call to rise rings out at the same time ever morning, 5 am. Every morning, at 5 am, I rock myself out of a shallow sleep, gather the scattered pieces of my focus and brace myself, ready to face the budding day at its root. I loathed dawn for so long, returning to it only through necessity.

I recently found hidden value and beauty in those early hours. It wasn’t the way in which the horizon bled as the sun stalked the weakening night sky. It wasn’t the tranquil air, alive with a heady mix of possibility and bird song , it was something different. It was the way it mediated my conflicting thoughts and gave my hope a backbone, the way it allowed my compass to settle to a true north, it allowed me to breath in the realisation that, like that rising sun, coming from everywhere, to embrace everything, I have to go far from comfort to pierce the blackness.

My eyes are drawn to the morning sun, with envy and curiosity. When 5 am arrives, I rise to chase a dream.

 

SUNRISE

As your golden arcs dissolve the night, I wonder where you’ve been.

you trace the distance silhouettes with ribbons of foreign fire.

Fermenting the swollen shadows by imposing your rosy sheen,

as your golden arcs dissolve the night, I wonder where you’ve been.

I’ve been tested by dawns return, the burn of an auburn, keen

to unfold the day, invoke a steam to power our souls desire.

With your golden arcs dissolving night, I wonder where you’ve been,

you trace the distance silhouettes with ribbons of foreign fire.

–  Triolet

(c) Saili Katebe