prose poem: we can never be strangers

do you ever wonder how we might have faired if we had lingered there in that little brick house in the lilac cul de sac of our castle in the air? if we hadn’t been so quick to dismiss the possibility of happiness, like some card trick that could fool us into believing what wasn’t for us? that if Christ truly died for sinners like you and me, he could bring us healing here, now, rather than waiting with lifelong yearning for a heavenly reunion in carnelian rain?

I do. despite my lack of regret for the way things shook out in that turbulent wash of foolish burdens shrugged off and hearts dropped and shattered on the fissured Pennsylvania pavement. despite years of despair and disparaging anger fueled by the belief that I could never be enough for you, for her. despite seeing myself out because I knew, deep down, what you told me four years too late, as if we could twist fate into something of our own design, as gods. I never wanted to call up the drawbridge and lock up the gates to my heart, but I saw we would always be caught, no matter how far we drifted, in that motion-sick dependency we had cruelly come to worship. I saw it in your eyes, that last time we cried, dividing your reality and mine. and I knew I couldn’t stay.

and now it’s Christmas again and nothing has changed but everything is different because I have unearthed a hint of hope. I’m scared, because hope means love and love means pain. but this, you, me — might it be worth the wait?

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