I Went to the Temple Last Sunday
to the Temple
The temple was moved by an earthquake with the saints standing in disco sentimentality. I’m not supposed to tell you what that means. It had something to do with the good, the heroic, the worth-full, in indestructible grace. All things we have no idea about.
The glass windows raved on every heel that would bless them with any sacrifice. Only scars were allowed. You’re not hurting enough because you never cry. I was only trying to avoid the black Roman tiles who called on thunder.
The aisle of believers made a mountain out of their bones. They thought they could have a wish if they broke themselves. I don’t know who gave them that idea. Some were kneeling with their hands clasped lock, perpetually imploring for mercy. Were they praying to die or were they praying so they won’t?
While walking among the ruins, there was a time I thought I might never see you again. The smoke was too thick, the dust rained on, and the earth opened itself in welcoming— waiting for me. I’m not supposed to tell you what that means.
I suppose it had everything to do with the worst. Of things we know all too well. But worth is inconsequential; that you could be in a billion scattered pieces. And yet still be loved.
is something I want you
to know the meaning of
who’s to say we’re not meant to be
midnight becomings of the waves on
suicidal rocks by the shore at the time
when no one is awake except the
moon to bear witness to what pain
does to people no we blame it on pain
that’s easier yes even when the crows
croak of lullabies from the book of
the dead in preservation of your life
you choose to relish in all the hurt of
the world but my love who’s to say
we’re not meant to heal each other’s
emptiness slowly filling it with things
more than love things we never knew
things we never saw before never felt
before step on closer to the fault line
let your toes be touched by the sea
you won’t be swallowed alive
dragged to the depths swept away in some
misery-eating current don’t hold your
heart all on one hand if only you see
what the holy sands see
how the world is blessed by your footprints
who’s to say that i shouldn’t write
lyrical truths of the things you don’t
realize when these are the only things
keeping me holding me when the
wind tries to carry us apart only to
bloom in concretes and in the harsh
arctic and again the skies will bear
witness to the wider tapestry of the
universe that what is you is me and
wherever i am there you will be so
who’s to say we were not meant to be
born with the sun as it kisses the sea
Maisie Russel is a poet based in the middle east. As a third-culture kid, poetry is her avenue of exploration and understanding. Inspired by classical prose and modern poetry, her works usually revolve around the nature of connections and our relationships – human to human, human to nature, and human to a higher being.
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