Bathtub poetry

If your thoughts should turn to death, gotta stomp ’em out like a cigarette – Bright Eyes

I lay in the tub, warm and cold all at once, holding wine in my mouth like some kind of offering, unswallowed. This is his body, this is his blood, and who decided I had to drink it to achieve salvation, anyway? All I can dream about on days like this is a quiet place in the center of a raging sea. A spot of solitude when all I really need is a pair of strong arms wrapped tight around my body. I look at the ring on my left-hand finger, the one that signifies a promise and a future. But what is a promise except something meant to be broken, eventually? How many good years can we reasonably expect before apathy, resentment, restlessness, or a potent mix of all three permeate into the wood and rot the floors out from under what it is we’ve built?

I love you so much
But do me a favor, baby, don’t reply
Cuz I can dish it out but I can’t take it – Brand New

I am uncomfortable with being loved. Because, have they truly met me? Seen every crevice, every gaping hole? Probably not. And how can they know. I mean, I love without knowing 100% of what there is to know about a person… But that’s different. That’s my choice. A broken person can fill themselves with whatever fits their cracks and crevices. Right? Wrong. Love is a two way street. Love is cultivated, yes, but it also happens when you are someone who is shining so bright that… even the dark corners you fear so deeply, so intensely that sometimes you sleep with the lights on… Even the darkness inherent in them is dispelled for enough time that the other person sees You. Naked and vulnerable, and wholly you. The only way you can be. The way you are to them. And even if it doesn’t last, it’s real in the moment. It’s real for the amount of time it exists, and it remains even if the darkness returns, encroaching closer and closer until it swallows the light whole.

I live inside my crevices, languish in those gaping holes. To invite anyone inside to see them up close is to expose myself down to the bone. And yet I do. And yet we do. It’s what humanity is about. Grasping, clawing, begging to be seen – to be loved despite and because of our cracks and faults. And loving because we can see those cracks, we can run our fingertips along those faults and lay soft kisses upon them, whisper sweet words of encouragement in the face of so much darkness. Because we have all seen the darkness, we have all bathed in its utter lack of light, and we all crave the glory of being bathed in the sunshine of someone who loves us… Just as we are… Despite our basest selves.

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