Drop your sufferings, one by one
Spent petals from late summer’s bloom.
Watch, as the cloud of witness opens to reveal light.
Let words shatter time and space.
Our arms wrap you in the dark, rock you through the stormy sea.
For you are ours, sweet darling
Pull the arrow from your heart.
~ adapted from a line spoken by Alice Walker
Our stars crossed long before we met. From faraway I’d heard her heart beating, felt her skin on mine. Anna Bellerose. Every breeze and twig snap had me turn.
“Two souls tangled in time,” the townsfolk said. Others murmured, “Damned” and spit upon the ground.
A single thread entwined our destiny. Controlled on a loom, the silk was measured and cut by the three Fates: Clotho, Lachesis, and Atropos.
Goddesses. At night, they stood in the heart of the forest, long robes lit by moonlight. Hands held, they circled and sang. Silvery notes chorused heavenward. Even the stars winked back.
In one moment, three women had proclaimed eternal law, a steel trust that sealed our submission. The stories of two lives were to play out without obstruction. Their magic art would drag me across territories, to leave me standing on a snow covered doorstep.
“Old souls,” the keeper said, as he led me to a darkened room.
Anna stood beneath a broken chandelier, trapped in the shadow of a single memory. Her face, a moon in a well to wish upon, her crooked crown, from a fairytale. On a table lay an open book.
I knew the tale. Spoken words locked in time had already pinned me to the page.
She turned to me.
I met her with a smile.
“I am a woman but no angel.
Angels don’t exist,” she said.
dropping into another scene~
Roy’s arms reached for her and he whispered to no one. They existed in two worlds. A pane of glass separated him from his reality and Ella. A Sarah Vaughn song lulled his thoughts: ‘Lover Man.’
Meanwhile life went on. He knew this truth. The kids needed new shoes, Jacqueline nagged about a leaking tap, and the garage waited for paint.
In a garden, thirteen blocks across town, Ella paused beside a rose-bush and turned. A gentle wind wrapped itself around her. She imagined a presence, felt a hand warm her waist. A low voice whispered into her ear, “Wish that you were here.”
Ella turned, no one was there. She went back to her rose.
Across town, Roy rested his forehead against the glass. From outside he heard his daughters’ laughter. He’d paint the garage for his father in law.
My sister asked, “Do you remember that morning at the beach?”
How could I forget?
A memory of us. Two children lost in fantasy, tiny feet dancing as the ocean kissed the sand. Accidental twins, our small bodies snuggled in white hoodies.
“You took a stick and drew a huge circle,” she said,
“I drew a circle to protect us.”
I see her step inside the circle. She is careful not to smudge the rounded edges.
The circle was our make shift island. A sanctuary, both too young to appreciate, paused moments are fleeting. We didn’t know of danger.
The universe knew. Two sprites and a majestic sea. Brave and shivering as the winds blew. A shipwrecked dinghy, marooned on the sand. Their stick, an oar.
It was as if our mere survival depended on circles.
Circles were everywhere throughout our world. We scampered through dense forests, our hard backs kissed by a honeyed sun. When night fell, two wolf pups mapped the stars and howled beneath a buttery moon.
We studied planets. Ever curious, our questions wheeled with ‘whys.’ Never sure, we chased certainty’s tail, passionate in our quest for truth.
We embraced circles. In the 70’s it was mandalas, knotted bandanas about our heads, and bracelets upon our wrists. We drove cars round blocks, cities, and countries, always to circle back home.
We are all circles. The whorls on our fingertips, the irises of our eyes, our DNA cells, to the egg that gave us life.
She asked, “Will life break us apart?”
“Never,” I said. ” If we drift apart, we’re returned by centrifugal force and universal law. Our fingers, forever tangled by an invisible thread that binds.”
She reaches for my hand.
Our circle is strong.
Beneath a sky of diamonds
Raised her hands to the heavens
Perchance he could reach back
A gravitational collapse
Within a circular path of galaxies and souls
Humbled by Divinity
His daughter, his blood
Born with the stealth of a wolf
Fuelled by the heart of a fawn
Tenacious as a honey badger
Immutable thread: Do you hear her whispers?
A spoken oath, a crossed heart, a blown kiss
Rustling on the wings of Winter
A star collapses luminous and tumbles to earth