The Visit

Knocking at the door with the promise of an answer
Night time with no stars and the street lights are dim
The passing cars of night owls and night enthusiasts cruise by silently
Only the hum of the bass and the growl of the engine signal their presence at all

Again I knock
A little harder
A little louder
The nighttime chill rattles through my clothes causing me to hug my cardigan closer
Crossing my arms in a feat to warm myself
A stance of visible defense for those who may lurk among the shadows
The windows reflect the deep blue hues in the sky
No sign of life inside
You promised your presence but it’s too quiet for the walls encasing this door to hold any dwellers

I glance at my watch
It’s getting later
Almost too late for me to continue standing outside on a rickety porch
While others settle into their vulnerable states of peaceful sleep
I stand with my back against the wind and the cool air
More vulnerable than they
Alone and afraid
Too unhinged to be unmoved
But too dissatisfied to unhinge

I can’t
I physically cannot loose myself from the floor boards of these steps to walk back to my car
To drive back to these situations that are like dead ends
No hope and no help to ignite a flame of continuance
Depression has more consistency than desired and the light unto my path has dimmed

I have cried alone too many times
In bathrooms stalls under the hush of running water from the showers
Under the thin layers of protection that bed sheets provide
Only heavy enough to block a sniffle or two
And I have run from living
Run from the experience of being more than a body on this green earth
More than a cog in a 9 to 5 slot
In a job with no benefits and no promotion
I am stuck in more ways than one

The old say that I cannot appreciate what lays at my fingertips
But of what did they dream?
With the goals flashing across my television
Walking into my work place
Driving in front of me in traffic
There is more to desire now than then
And even then their desire was that I have mine
Perhaps they were more selfless
that I cannot guarantee
But lest it be stricken on me, this title of greed and pettiness, I must add that the cars, the homes, the income are not so much a pursuit of mine as they are a bonus
I only wish for unshakable peace
Unhindered joy
And an unphased confidence

To wake up in the morning and commence my day
To view myself without the lens of comparison
With hopes of skin more clear
Physique more shapely
And presence which commands
To take the risk, the path less travelled even with fear clenching to my chest like a new born child
And reap the harvest of faith sown
To make that mistake and not reside in its camp
To not cry myself into a means of punishment
To not sleep myself into a state of forgetfulness, a wolf under the cloak of forgiveness
to relish in youth while it is yet at my hands
And grow without regrets, only wisdom

And this is not the first time I have knocked at your door without answer
Your folly promises to meet me
Answer me
Receive me
Banging my fists and ringing the doorbell
Listening to it chime and chime and chime
And you somewhere
Anywhere
But at the threshold of your door, extending invitation for my entrance

I have come and have cried at this door
Wiping my eyes and nose with the sleeves of my shirts
I came with curses on my lips and foul fallacies on my skin
I came ugly and hurt
I came broken from solitude
I came with nail marks on my forearms
And hunger in my belly
I left the janitors supply room
I skipped class
I hid on the roof
I sat in the foyer
I waited in the car
And it rained on me, hailed on me
Stormed so that the thunder shook the very dams loose
And every hurt and pain came flooding in
Sweeping away my weak foundation
And I always beckoned for you at your door with no answer
No reply
Knock and the door will be opened
Ask and receive
Are you not of your word
Is there not premise to your promise!

I yell so that you hear me
They look on with curiosity and pity
“Poor child” they must think
To make such a fool of myself
but I yell and scream until I make you hear me
Do you hear me yet?
Where is your reply
Your answer
Will you answer me?!

And as the silence curbs around my grating voice
Out of the corner of my eye I see a door open from a few houses down
the interior light erupts in the shadows, driving out a degree of darkness
and there you stood, peeping out into the satin curtain of midnight
You leave the door ajar as you shuffle out onto the deck
Down the steps
Up the sidewalk
Making your way to me
Closing in the remaining space between us with your coat hanging in the crook of your arm
You’re fully dressed as though without meaning to rest
Even this late your jeans are pressed, your shirt is buttoned and tucked

“There you are. I’ve been waiting for you. What are you doing over here?” You ask as you throw the coat over my shoulders
Shielding me from the penetrating breeze at your own penance
The holes in your hands visible even with the late night haze
“You’ve been waiting for me? I have been waiting for you! I knocked and knocked and you’ve never answered. You told me you would answer” I whispered, trying to conceal the welling in my eyes and the swelling my throat
And you looked me genuinely anguished
Understanding even with my low voice the burden that lay my heart
the world’s weight and it’s unforgiveness
And you replied
“why yes I did but child you are at the wrong house. There is no one here to answer your knock. But I am here, I have met you where you are.”

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