The sound that comes: ssshhhh.
Maybe instead of a word for the year, I need a sound. Maybe it will be more meaningful for me to swap out “om” with sssshhh in morning meditations.
It’s the sound that comes when the tide pulls out. When a person tries to calm a baby. Or someone else.
Let it go. Exhale. Let it be.
What else can you do?
For too long now, all this noise. All this pain. “Everything hurts” – I think it began as a complaint, but has become a mantra. So much so, even I didn’t recognize the seriousness of it all. The damage done.
I haven’t noticed the times when I am the only source of the pain.
I had a lover once who said I worked too hard at it: he laughed at all the unnecessary effort. Not mocking, he laughed gently: Like a ssshhh.
I was very young then. I thought pleasure was performative.
And I didn’t yet know that pain could be.
It is frightening to give up the self-deception of control. The storms, too, will come on their own. And then we need to let them go as they pass.
I get caught up in my own will. And turn petulant when I’m faced with the evidence of its meaninglessness.
Some facts that do not necessary make a poem:
- I swam in the river once, when I was about 14.
- Swimming is one thing – swimming isn’t the right word for this.
- My body was clenched because I was so afraid of water.
- I was deliberately pushing myself to get over it.
- I don’t know if it refers to the fear, or to my body.
- From the shore, my step-father threw my friend into the water.
- She couldn’t swim.
- She tried to climb on top of me to keep her head above water.
- I am still afraid of water.
- I go to the beach when I need to sort through the scary thoughts about being in this world.
- I run.
- Or I am still.
- Being still is like floating.
- I never wave.
- I always assume someone waving is waving to someone behind me.
- If you try to help someone who is drowning, you will likely drown, too.
We are empathetic creatures.
No. That is not a fact.
- We don’t really understand anything.