If you’ve ever felt the love of another deeply, on the brink of fiercely, then I know you’ll pick up writing easily.
Easy like the slow ease that slipped through the cracks in the doorway to the bathroom as you stood beside your mother and learned the art of lipstick for the 300th time. Top lip. Bottom lip. Apply. Purse. Pucker.
That’s it. All I care to pass on after two years spent wedging words into this space.
Feeling the love of another so deeply, so fiercely, that you swear you could be the one to take that Same Love and groove it finely into someone else. That skill, that confidence… That will make anyone very good at anything they try.
If you’ve got that kind of Fierce Love, pick up a pencil and let it spill. Or a brush and let it go. Or a spoken word and let it ripple.
It’s my secret.
I’ve never taken a writing class. I’ve never draped my name in accolades. I’ve only watched my mother make black bean soup in the kitchen. I’ve only watched my father pour change in a jar. I’ve only stood so close to a man playing the saxophone in Central Park, perhaps too close, so I could pretend for just a second that he wanted to teach me how to breath. With Fire. With Passion. That he wanted to teach me to Breath Breathlessly.
After two years of coming to this blank slate of a Wordpress page, my secret to all the words is this: someone loved me good at a young age, good enough to convince me that I was worth breath & life & day, and that, if I had all these things, I would be ok. Tomorrow would be ok. And that if I was to be One of the Lucky Ones with this Rare Kind of Tomorrow that I’ve mistakenly used as a laundry basket for the things I One Day Might Do, then I should use it to make others believe the truth: that they too are all worth breath & life & day.
And that if I was here, standing here, then, it had to be for something. And I might as well explore and find My Something in this world. Because really, what else is there? I’ve believed in pennies turned heads up. In reindeer pawing just above my turquoise shutters. And I’ve believed that we were all born for Some Kind of Something.
Do you believe it? I mean, do you believe it enough to look for it? To give up for it? To wade in waters until you find it? To wade & wait and actually believe that you were born for Something much Bigger than what fits in the palms of your hands?
Me? I was born for this. Born to be held on subways and cafes. Born to be cradled at the spine, clutched in waiting rooms, held tight by the last flicker of a candle burning at the wick. I was born with this unexplainable, untouchable turns intangible turns untamable, madness inside of me that has left me wondering how you and him said goodbye. Leaves me carrying her heartbreak, his loneliness, the old man’s elation and the skinny girl’s pride, shoveled into my chest until I can dump it on a page. And sit. Just sit there. And find a way to line up words like soldiers, line up words willing to speak for unspeakable things: like Tragedy, like Death, like Heart in the Throat, Late Night “I’ll Meet You Anywhere” Conversations that might just end in We Won’t Make This Work because Here Let’s Circle It On A Map, The Miles That Drag Us Apart that will eventually turn into Let’s Just Forget It Until Morning, Until You Board That Plane, Until I Cannot Feel You Any Longer And Your Sweatshirt Loses Scent. That is what I was born for. My God, I am a bundle of breath because of it.
I am so fiercely, madly born for this that it leaves me walking away from this page. Crying where I shouldn’t cry. Pawing at God’s door like a little puppy. Because I want it so bad, every minute, to just give every second of this Short Little Thing Called Life to letting you know that you’re worth it… In Similes & Metaphors, you’re worth it. In Anecdotes & Allegory, you’re worth it…
I don’t believe people when they try to tell me how to be a child of God.
A child of God? There is really a way?
I say, if you want to be a child of God then find that space of breathlessness within you and then death grip it. Don’t ever let it go. Let it turn up your chin with the sunrise. Let it rock you to sleep. Let it leave you failing to put your finger on it. And let it be the very thing that makes you believe that people who lead breathless lives are the ones who first say, I’m worth it.