Healthy couples argue. Anger is normal. Sometimes you have to raise your voice.
Sure. But have you ever heard yourself when words fly out like ugly, winged monkeys? When you just can’t NOT finish the rant and it keeps going and you’re getting to your point, but there are crucial details and now NO ONE is listening?
And you know, the longer and louder you go on, the more ugly, winged monkey crap you will have you clean off your floor and furniture?
UGH! Anyway, as justifiable as this is sometimes, I immediately feel sorry. Not because I expressed myself or made my point. I feel sorry because I did not handle myself like an adult and instead became a verbal volcano, hurting the people I love.
The French word for sorry is “désolée” – literally desolate. And after I feel sorry, I feel alone. Empty. And I am not sure where to sit. Or what activity in which to engage to make things better. The people in my life are precious to me. I love them and I am loved.
I’m not Vesuvius or Pompeii or Krakatoa. I’m not going to make cinder and ash from this little blaze that warms us and keeps us close.
I believe in all the good there is in him. I believe he tries his best everyday. And he reminds me to do the same. So I’ll stick with this. And him.
So here is my poem:
In quick, ugly moments when
we occupy the same space
and sheer physics denies our
solitude, I morph into an ancient, dark crow.
My cackle jarring the blue, raw nerve of you,
My endless prattling caw about nothing of consequence
Grating to your sweet ear
My uncertain love song unwelcome.
Flutter of my weak wing scorching to your fine skin
My bright shiny eyes beholding you like a treasure
Magpies would surely steal away
I want so much to be the happy bluebird, the Gothic raven,
The garish flamingo, the mythic phoenix or
even the clumsy albatross.
But I am just an old crow who loves the flannel
pattern of your shirt moved by the wind.
The softest breeze carries wakefulness in
Your limbs and mystifies me. I know how soft
and warm straw can be.
How pieces of you have
been carried away and need reclaiming.
I understand the metal skeleton under it all
Hardened and yet soulful, the glint of wisdom
And truth you hide under the ragged hat.
I want so much to be the exception, the one blackbird
You allow close to the open radiance of your fertile dreams.
Even if I need to wear a disguise.
I want sometimes to be the match, the incendiary kiss of flame
That sets you alight, blazing like angry copper.
But I know if you ever burned, I would only fly
to your crumbling shoulder
And set my withering wing against your heart.