Breathe to me

So many things can be perceived
in the simple cadence of a breath.
The pace, or lack thereof,
gives away every
fragile emotion.
A quick inhale
is the shock
that sets the heart to race.
While a simple slow release,
is a sigh returning the calm;
or offering a melancholic protest.
Stuttering to a stop,
tears of grief halt its
staccato steps.
A steady increase signals
physical exertion.
Slow breaths grow
to frantic panting.
Just what is it that makes you pant?
What drives you to gasp
so desperately
through burning lungs?
I want to know what makes you.
Breath to me.
Let me see
what you are inside.

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Perfection

Do I do someone a disservice by finding them perfect?

Someone found me perfect once. He loved me unconditionally. Well, he thought he did. It wasn’t until he knew me better that I realized I wasn’t what he pictured me to be.

But I loved him; so I tried to be.

Being perfect is exhausting. Every moment being exactly what someone wants and expects of you. Even falling asleep before him and waking first so he can’t see the way you drool into your pillow.

Just flip it over, nothing to see here.

Finally he found out. No. I wasn’t perfect. He was shocked. How could I be different? I was “someone he didn’t know anymore.”

Yeah, he didn’t know me.

Not anymore.

Not ever.

The next one, he thought I was perfect too.

This time I almost believed it. I made no attempts to hide myself, upfront about everything.

I told him the good and bad.

He knows about me the things that I thought I could never tell another person. Those dark experiences that even your own mind doesn’t want to think about.

Still I was perfect.

But was I really? I can’t be. The definition of perfection is to be without flaw. That is not me, nor will it ever be.

To him I was perfect. But that does not make me perfect. It makes me perfect for him? I suppose that is the best way to imagine it.

I am not perfect. Much like the first time, our understanding of one another was lacking.

He thought I was perfect.

I strove to perfect myself.

I outgrew us. Is that harsh? I typed it once, deleted it, then again typed it, then deleted it. I tried rewording it to ease the blow. But in the end this was the only thing that made sense.

And that is what he told me. (A different he mind you. I know, at this point it’s rather confusing.). That if someone finds perfection in another, that person can do one of two things. Accept that they have reached their Plateau; or struggle to improve upon their perfection.

Did they do me a disservice? I don’t think so. The disservice done was me to myself.

At first, trying to conform to someone’s perfection.

And later feeling that the perfection was enough.

This time however I’m ready.

Prepared to be perfect.

When is a rock like a flower?

“Water flowers not rocks.”

That’s what he told me.

That’s what he told him.

There is a depth of profundity in that statement that is so obvious and yet so easily overlooked.

How many years have I spent expecting my rock garden to grow into a beautifully colored displays of hope, success, happiness, love…

Why do we delude ourselves? Rocks are no closer to flowers than the sun is to the earth. In the distance you watch them kiss as the glowing orb disappears beneath the curvature of the horizon. In the distance there is promise, something that looks like it is possible. But as you walk closer, it continues to move away. They meet eternally out of reach.

This rock, though it may be shaped like a seed, though I might treat it as lovingly as a child, nurturing it at every step. I put it in the sun, I water it…

Never will it blossom.

It is a rock.

Is this thing on?

I’ve always been nervous when taking the mic. All eyes on me, expecting something extraordinary to come from my lips. Realistically that is a reasonable expectation. When I take the stage, if I expect people to listen then I better have something good to say. The symbiotic relationship of author and reader. If I want to receive the praise that I desire, then I must create something magical. Please do not be afraid to criticize or hang from my every word, I welcome both in equal measure.

For now I leave you with this:

Check.

Check.

The feedback makes them cringe.

I tug at the neck

of my tee, one size too large.

A gesture from the wings.

My hands tremble.

Check.

Check… one… two…

Better now

Sweat drips down my face.

I can’t breathe.

The lights…

Too hot.

Check, one, two, three?

Thumbs up.

My heart pounds.

My hands shake.

Finally releasing the mic,

secure in its stand.

I am a ghost.

Disappearing before

being remembered.

My mic check;

just a warm up.