Is it really so hard to understand?
Are you so guiltless?
In the minutes before I bend my knees to the dead wood of the confessional
I find myself confronting the horfrost
Of your persecution and my own confused shame.
You ask “Why?” And I find the heavy heat of incredulity suffocating.
As if you yourself are without the freckling on your conscience
And I alone have ever sinned.
Standing before you in this moment I am a gymnast in the cavern of my own chest;
Anxiety the hand waving about my rapidly devolving excuses like a ribbon.
My knees crack against the base of our private altar as the trumpet’s hollow brass rings out and the ribbon falls still.
I wrap myself in self preservation, felted and cheap though it is, and choose to lie a little longer.
I imagine a house in the woods.
Down a narrow road with green growing up both sides.
Infinite leaves and bark overhead and underfoot.
Fog and four-legged creatures scampering about.
I imagine a house made of glass.
Crystal clear views in stereo surround.
On display for the no one who can look in.
And living in that house I could walk into the wood
It would be nice to feel so heard.
What they don’t tell you about the boy and the wolf
Is that it wasn’t a wolf who bit the boy.
For in the same village lived a girl who the boy loved to tease.
Three times when he pushed her to the ground she ran to town
And they exclaimed that boys will be boys and let the matter be.
One last time he pushed her down and she ran to the wolf and threw herself at its feet.
“I want to howl and bite, be strong and fearless like you” she cried.
To which the wolf replied, “a wolf is a spirit, girl, not a set of teeth.”
A week later she walked out of the woods with wildness in her gate
And freedom in her eyes. Three more times the boys played his games
And each time the girl bared her grin and dared him one hit further.
One last time he came for her, only to the shock of town, the girl fought back.
What else would you learn, little Ella,
Each night asleep beneath the stairs?
Than to rise unencumbered
and with no regard for those who
upon you tread.
‘Isn’t there always some kind of condition to contentment?’ – R. Brand
Why else would I feel guilty
when I want to say “I’m good”?
Because what I really mean is I’m content
and no one would understand why.