Ghostyard of Monarchs

You enter the Castle grounds at dusk as the lights of the Round Tower gleam against a lavender sky, and walking through the ancient wooden doors that have fretted and warped under the weight of ancient stone, you emerge into the nave of the chapel as the strings of the orchestra begin to strum and the choral soprano of the boys choir travels through the transept like an echo through a canyon, and when tears fill the corners of your eyes as the violins shriek their mighty cry, you look to the ceiling to keep them from spilling over, when you see those pillars, those centuries-old gothic giants holding up the crests of Garter Knights and sheltering the final resting places of Kings and Queens and your feet feel as if they’ll rise from the floor as it all ends with the celebratory Old Hundredth and a rapturous wave of ovation, and spilling out of those medieval doors back into the ghostyard of monarchs, you pause for a breath before leaving the moment, the seraphic notes still ringing in your ears, your skin tingling with alertness, and you thank the universe for the existence of sounds so pure and transcendent they lift your very soul out of stagnancy and make clear how it feels to feel with every flesh and bone and gut of you.

The Shadowy Path

I used to write here often, but I haven’t in a while. Not any real words at least. A year exactly. Since I first started this book. I’ve been saving all of the words. Plucking them out of my subconscious and laying them down like bricks. Labouring to build a path as I trudge down it. It’s a dimly lit path with no signposts. All that exists is the next word, the next step in front of me and the sound of my unsteady foot lumbering forward into an unknown. Because you don’t know that the words will take you anywhere. You keep typing, keep reaching in the dark for something to anchor you, hoping that if you fall you’ll do it silently, so that no one will hear the thunderous roar of your failure. You don’t know anything. The only certainty is showing up, tapping on the keys and trusting that the right words will come. No one is forcing it, it isn’t life or death, and yet, sometimes it feels as necessary to survival as the next breath. And so on you write, and on you wander down the shadowy path, surrendering to what could possibly be found along the way.

Saving Each Other

Aren’t we all just here to save each other?

To put pressure on the wounds and stitch up the flesh and mop up the blood that seeps out of each other’s lives like rainwater from a potted plant; to help sew what’s torn, ice what’s bruised, fill what’s cracked.

Aren’t we all just here to lower ourselves to the bloodstained ground, look one another in the eyes, humbled and present, and whisper “I feel it too.”

And as we kneel there together, gripping each other’s hands for dear life and feeling each laceration as if they were our own, we hear the faint sound of music; not yet loud enough to dance, but not quiet enough to sit still. We lean against one another as we push upward against the weight of our mutual pain, steadied by our closeness and lifted by our oneness.

We limp slowly and hopefully toward the distant sound, side by side, the drops of blood becoming smaller and the pain becoming lesser as we walk, subtle hip shaking moving us forward as we step out of the shadows, soon to dance wildly like dandelion spores in the sunlight.

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