#1714

What meaning, these symbols, this strange play? The monster’s bride, as it were, though who knows what was ever truly in her heart, seeking sanctuary in a cathedral though surely she doesn’t believe. But she wants to right now and she mutters to herself to believe, believe, drawn in and hunched over with the weight of the darkness clinging to her back. Does she see it? Does she feel it? Or does she think the church doors can block out all evil? Perhaps they could, if only this shadow wasn’t so much a part of her that she carries it inside as easily as her bones and blood. She tries to sit on a pew but she’s too restless, she feels like she’s being followed, watched, hunted. So she paces, wandering near the priests as they light the great tall candles, and as she passes the shadow reaches out to snuff the flames and shatter the white wax into black smoke. One, two, three, four, it sends out its drifting tendrils to douse each candle and usher the shadows in the corners closer. She weeps, maybe, but she cannot or will not control the hungry thing she carries. Soon only the faintest, most remote tapers remain lit, for shadow does need a small bit of light for casting. The priests and worshippers huddle in fear. They watch as the darkness rises from her back like a cloak swept aloft by the wind, until with newfound strength it tears from her completely and drifts down to settle into its own autonomous form. A living thing draped in darkness, staring out at the fear and the panic with a smile on its hidden, or perhaps missing, face. It catches sight of itself, then, in mirrors hanging behind the crowd. I see you, sir, I think to the reflection, and bow my shadowed arms. Then I laugh, and the sound echoes through the cavernous halls. So thus darkness entered, came free, and took form. Thus the church was invaded and infected. But why? Why her, and why him? Who was I, in her body, in the shadows? Who was I in the mirror?

#1713

What if the priestess, once born, never died? What if she served her god so faithfully they gifted her with everlasting life, so she need only take a new form when the previous one was spent? Though perhaps immortality was never actually a gift, only a way to keep her spirit bound in servitude through the ages. Priestess, scribe, oracle, conduit – every life a different body and yet the same soul, the same bond, the same calling. Would she remember those past lives or would each rebirth restart the process of seeking and submitting? These aren’t questions I’m yet ready to ask; I don’t know which answer I hope for and which answer I fear.

#1712

.
a
grain of
sand is pushed
upward by the wind
and joins its fellows to
form a great desert sand dune
which in time turns to bright sandstone
all reds and golds and oranges
which in time weathers down
from wind and rain
to a single
grain of
sand
.
.
a
grain of
sand is pushed
upward by the tide
and joins its fellows to
form a beach and then hills
which in time are pushed into mountains
looming tall above the ocean shores
which in time weather down
from wind and rain
to a single
grain of
sand
.

#1711

Suffering forms a hungry absence, a black hole to which we are always vulnerable. Once trapped in the pull we can never get far enough away; everywhere we go, the event horizon tugs at our hearts. If we give in, the force yanks us into darkness. If we fight, we only delay the inevitable. Thus the asylum pulls at Daren, and even claiming its name as his own doesn’t make any of its power his. St. Anthony, patron saint of lost things, of lost people. St. Anthony, patron saint of black holes, ever dragging him back to the place of ruin. “Daren St. Anthony” has a nice ring to it, so it might as well be the name on his headstone. Part of him was buried in that place anyway, though by now he can’t remember what.

#1710

The goddesses who have sought me out are so different from me. Bast and Inanna both are goddesses of love, of sensuality and sexuality, of hot desert days and cold desert nights. What do these aspects mean for me, the one who guards her body like a sealed tomb and yearns always for the rain? You’d think such deities would want nothing to do with someone like me. The desert calls to me but it’s not a place in which my soul could take root. I can find pleasure in flesh but it never feels completely effortless. I feel the urge to sing and dance but can barely even bring myself to do them when I’m alone. These goddesses are both so unbridled, so unashamed, so free! I envy them the nerve to waltz into the Underworld, the ferocity to tear down their enemies, the confidence to embrace love in all its forms. I envy their self-assurance and ease in their immortal bodies. It’s hard to imagine either could ever be afraid or weary or uncertain. Do they realize they’ve picked some anxious little asexual girl with absolutely no rhythm who overheats when the temperature tops sixty-five degrees? I want to make them proud, I do. I just wonder how such goddesses could ever be proud of having someone like me as a follower.

#1709

“Inanna”

goddess for the ages
lady of war and fertility
goddess for this age
lady of rebellion and sexuality

instead of a scepter
brass knuckles capped in crystals
instead of a crown
face painted Dia de Muertos
instead of silk robes
ripped jeans and stiletto heels
instead of precious stones
metal studs on shoes, clothes, skin

lady of rebellion and sexuality
goddess for this age
lady of war and fertility
goddess for the ages

#1708

I don’t know if I’ll see you again, Little Flame, and the thought breaks my heart. I’m sorry I can’t be by your side while you struggle to live. You must be so scared, so lonely. I feel like I’ve failed you and The Lady both, though I know the situation is out of my control. Still, I worry and I pray and I try not to lose hope. I know you’re in good hands; I just wish you were in mine instead. Whatever happens, I promise I won’t forget you. If you must return to The Lady’s arms, then so be it. I would rather you pass on to the Eternal Land than suffer in this one. Visit me, though, will you? We only had a few days together, and may not have any more, but I love you and I’ll miss you terribly. If you can’t come back to me in this life, then at least stop by from time to time in the next. I’ll be looking for your bright coat and listening for your gravelly voice. You’ll always be welcome in my home, be you living or spirit. I’m with you, Little Flame, even if I can’t be by you physically. Remember that even if your time here is brief, you are loved greatly. You will not be forgotten.

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