It’s not everyday you look back over your life and try to string the dots together to make sense of the mess but today, it seems, is such a day.
This kind of thing happens at the end of any year I suppose, the reflecting, collecting, sifting through what happened, what you did or didn’t do with the time you had.
So much waste. So much treasure. And in the end what is it all for? Where have you come from and where have you gone?
The trees in the field are soft and strong and standing naked and alone under a blank pale sky. Winter is a part of everything now. In the icy running stream, in the sharp invisible air current beneath the tiny bird who soars silently into a bush of holly for shelter.
It is possible for a year to be stolen from you, you know that now in a way you hadn’t before. The rich and powerful will use what they have to bury you alive. Annihilation of the mind. Did you not know evil was a kind of intelligence or did you just forget?
It is a strange thing to wrap what’s left of your sanity around and an even stranger thing to fold into your heart in order never to forget. We make choices, we make selections, and we watch as chunks of our former selves float off far and away.
There is a new year coming around the corner, I can smell it like a wood fire burning, burning, as I pull on my boots and step out into the cold December air. I can feel it in my bones as shivers spike down my spine.
When the snow begins to fall, I duck under my hood and turn away from the wind.
All this time I have been given crowds and bursts in my chest like a flower desperate to bloom. I bite my tongue and close my eyes just to feel my skin without the noise.
It is the middle of the holiday week and all is quiet and still inside and all around. There is a certain kind of mood that is twinkle lights switched off and dead holiday decorations scattered on front lawns. Some kind of party is over that never quite began. It is the morning after and we are clutching our breasts on the wet walk home.
But there is beauty in the wreckage in our veins. There is a flicker of warmth in wide open sky.
How full of stories we seem to be but yet who dares to tell theirs out loud? Even to the bed sheets, even to the laptop screen. Who wants to see herself up that close and if she does what does that say about her.
Neurotic or adventurer? Poet or circus freak?
How much of what you worry about ever comes true? Has it been worth it to hang on or are you ready to just cut loose, come clean, break free?
As I make my way back along a side street, the purple evening sky begins her quiet descent over the white frozen hills. I can hear the geese cry out as their thick black bodies fly together in a V over head.
How this life comes at you screaming even as it’s drifting away.
All this churning in our souls as we decide how much we’ll say.
Photo by Taylor Harding