Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Walking away

I finally deleted all my old emails from the Ex. All those old shadows and ghosts lurking in my sent folder and inbox - gone, exorcised.

I felt ill going through them and deleting - they brought back memories of the girl that was and how ill and desperate and unhappy she had been. Life didn't begin until he left. I should have kept just one email though. The one I sent several months after the break up. I could see stirrings of spirit in that one. A growing strength and confidence.

But no, better to banish them all into virtual hell. It is enough for me that God sees and remembers. I don't want to carry the weight of them with me anymore.


A Walk to Sope Creek

Sometimes when I've made the mistake of anger, which sometimes
breeds the mistake of cruelty, I walk

down the rocky slope above the ruined mill on Sope Creek
where sweet gum and hickory weave sunlight

into gauzy screens. And sometimes when I've made the mistake
of cruelty, which always breeds grief,

I remember how, years ago, my uncle led me, a boy,
into a thicket of pines and taught me to pray

beside a white stone, the way a man had taught him, a boy,
to pray behind a clapboard church.

Sometimes when I'm as mean as a stone, I weave
between trees above that crumbling mill

and stumble through those threaded screens of light,
the way anger must fall

through many stages of remorse.
Any rock, he allowed, can be an altar.

- David Bottoms


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