I have a sister I’ve not met. We know each other through words on a screen and the occasional photo. We are close to the same age but have lived wildly different lives.
She is the person behind
Our Lady Of Lust And Grace
On Facebook, and her blog is the first I ever followed. She has a way, she has a style that hits my brain like sugar cookies, she says things that feel like home and she calls me Brother Matt, because I told her she is my sister.
This was written in response to one of her blog posts, if you don’t read her you should.
“I love this. I love you. It’s not up for debate and does not require any action on your part… It’s what I am.
I have been debated and disagreed with on this point, but, my definition of love seems to me to be accurate. After seeing what is said and done, for four decades and in hundreds of varied relationships, I have narrowed it down to a one-word topic:
Love is service.
A mother loves her child, and there is no use in arguing, because when she loves her child it can be seen (and if she doesn’t, it can be seen)
Spouses love each other when they put in effort to show love to each other
Siblings love each other when they make sure to exhibit love for one another
Strangers display their love for other strangers, for the needy, for the lonely, for the random asshole that needs a bit more concern… When one person feels love in their person for another, they act. It’s used as a catch-all go-to default setting type of thing, but so often it’s being used to imply some type of obligation… (Of course I love you, now do what I want)
If I love you, it means I will help you, I will work for you, I will go out of my way to give you a part of me and whether or not there is any tangible return from you, my love is being shown.
Love is service. Love is given. Love is acted. Love is Eve and her children are the gifts of nature. Love is an apple tree heavy with fruit. Love is a flowing, ice-cold stream of clear water, waiting for you to drink. Love is gifts left on a doorstep with no ‘from’ address. Love is the unnamed stranger changing a tire and leaving without a word.
Love is not a weapon… Love is a choice, a decision, an action, a thought that brings a smile.
Love is, it just is, love is.
Love must be. “
I feel my soul in those rocks,
Standing against the onslaught.
Eventually everything is eroded,
But for now, I stand,
Eventually everything is washed away and worn down to grains of sand
Rage, I yell to the ocean,
Give me all you’ve got
Give me all I can take
I will stand, as it crashes on me,
I will wear away one tiny piece at a time
Electricity hums in the lines as it runs through neighborhoods and across towns, the towers go up and everyone only looks down. Pieces of dreams transmitted through the sky don’t know if they will ever live or when it’s time to die, I want to stack what I lack next to empty backpacks scattered haphazardly so the whole world can see what really matters to me, the words of praise don’t flatter me, it’s sad to see what couldn’t be left behind monuments and statues of what shouldn’t be, what wouldn’t I give to see a better way to live or a national day to give thanks to the stories of glory, history is full of gory tales that don’t get told, advertising all the lies that get sold for dollars no longer backed by gold, we got jacked and they hold all the cards, why is it so hard to find out the truth?
Love begins and ends and new faces become old friends as love that used to fly free is caged and locked away, shelves stocked with what we didn’t say, tomorrow becomes today and yesterday fades into lost memory. New ideas are met with skeptical review, because how could we stop doing what we knew, how difficult it is to accept that traditional methods were based on misconception and misunderstanding, what the previous generation was handing down was a smile painted on a weeping clown and we don’t look around to understand what’s fair, just to say that what’s there is only what we knew we would see, nobody wants to find a new way to be free, only old paths to familiar locations, hearts fill with desperation and lonely longing, rights are trampled with the desire for belonging to groups that sit on thrones, old piles of bones and fossil fuels generate more wealth for the wealthy, and leave poverty everywhere, kids living in unhealthy homes don’t know why they can’t get a share.
We borrow time from unborn descendants, and leave less than was left for us, our reality is porous and shaking but we don’t believe in creation, we worship the breaking and destruction, break ground for new construction while the sweat of overworked lives goes unnoticed. We give our energy to the holders of finance notes and they party on fancy boats while we dream of peace, but there’s always a new lease to sign, there’s always a new design to keep what we’ve had and nevermind if it’s always been bad for the majority, they call people minorities as dozens rule millions, the bottom lives on pennies while the top stack their billions.
In the river of life we all drown eventually, we all flow downstream.
In the collection of lost dreams and unheard screams, we all own the blame for what we ignore, we all play as pawns while kings and queens sacrifice what they don’t care about, what they don’t hold dear, nobody knows what the cost truly is in tears and years, nobody wants to know what they fear.
my car sits motionless,
surrounded by impatience
nobody knows I’m here
My phone buzzes
Telling me that traffic is heavy, heading north on I-25, and I am surprised every time, because this is not a highway,
This is not a thirty-nine year old man, smoking another cigarette and listening to ‘World Class Rock’ on the radio,
I am not this.
I am, however, getting irritated by the intrusion of turn-signals as impatience dressed in expensive clothes and fancy cars keep changing lanes in front of me,
Don’t they know I don’t belong here?
The Lexus tries to merge into my passenger-side door and pulls away at the last second when eyes find me in a mirror, and I wonder if life will notice me too late, will reality crash into me just before seeing me here?
Can you save my heavydirtysoul? (Twenty-one Pilots)
I am sitting on a beach watching my daughter and sons play in the water, the sun shining on my tired face, as I see myself standing on the stone jetty that my brothers just jumped from, they call me to join them, but I see something in the water they don’t,
There’s a dark figure floating just under the surface of the waves, beckoning to me with a promise of the end,
It looks peaceful, calm…
We all float down here (Stephen King, It)
I’m watching her walk into the airport, and I know I mean to tell her to stay away, a scared stupid fool, and my heart begs me to run after her, go get her,
Go get Her
But I don’t. No matter how many times I see her walk away, I never go after her, and nine years later-
I am not here, thirty-nine years old and sitting in a car, smoking a cigarette and hoping the concrete dividers would pick up the pace as they crawl past me,
I’m not here, and nobody knows it, they don’t see me.
Impatience rides my bumper and hits the horn, because I am not close enough to the car in front of me.
All my life I’ve been searching for something (Foo Fighters)
She is there, looking at me, and I am lost. She is my dream, crashing into me just before I swim away, she wants me and I cannot stand how badly I want her, I can’t believe that this is happening, I was only here to say goodbye…
I wonder if life sees me, like she did. Not the image of me, not the idea of me, not the preconceived notion of what I could be or what I was…
Just me. A few flaws, a few strengths, a few laughs and a few years, anger and love and passion and desire and imagination, all packaged in disguise.
I exit the highway to my destination and I know, I am not this. I am not thirty-nine years old and working for a living, I am not a second-time college student struggling for grades, I am not a twisted soul writing poetry for internet eyes and digital hearts, I am not this.