Posts Tagged ‘inside job’

An Inside Job

Do you feel his presence
all the time now? she said,
and I imagined she meant
do I find signs of you
in spilled salt, in the background
of my reflection, in the light
behind the trees, in the color
of the sky, in the shape of clouds.
No, I scoffed.
And then I thought of how,
in every moment
I beam love to you,
and how I feel you
receive it, how I feel you
send love back.
Yes, I said. Yes,
I feel his presence
all the time. Not some
abstract experience, but
something vital as blood,
something integral as breath,
no longer separate—
you the love that fuels me
from the inside.

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I keep staring at it in the catalog at the Ametist linen/modal dress,

in amethyst, a linen shirt dress the catalog describes

as “wonderfully forgiving.” Well, that sounds good, of course.


And the dress, with its shimmering linen, its turquoise

and aubergine flowers, well, it’s beautiful. And perhaps

because I do not feel beautiful, I stare at it as if


it has a secret I need woven into its threads, as if I could buy it

and then be as happy as the model who is walking

through a sunlit field with a large bouquet of long-stemmed


dusky penstemon in her hand. She looks over her shoulder

as if there is someone or something there that delights her,

as surely everything does when she is wearing


her amethyst Ametist linen/modal dress with its “generous fit.”

Perhaps I would rather not remember that I must

be the one who is generous, I must be the one who


is “wonderfully forgiving.” Easier to imagine slipping into a dress

and letting the fabric do all the work. Harder to remember

that beauty is less about how we look and more about


the way we choose to see. Oh, to buy that dress

so that I might notice how little joy it really brings me.

Is this the way we meet the self? Through disappointment?


I decide to make my own catalog. Of my clothes.

I walk through the kitchen, modeling my yoga pants

and a fuzzy top pretending I am me


walking through the kitchen in my yoga pants and fuzzy top.

It’s not much of a stretch. I smile over my shoulder

at the tea pot, the dishes that need washing, a lunch box.


And why not smile? Perhaps there’s a secret I need

woven into something here—in the stack of mail,

in the charging cord, in the marker, the dish towel—


some chance for delight, something beautiful waiting

if only I choose to see the shimmer.

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In the Cold



not past the tip of the nose

—Joi Sharp



foraging for love, while inside the branches bow with dark, sweet berries

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