Sitting My Own Shiva
For many years I sat Shiva for my own life and my own dreams,
Allowing in only good stories, so as to invite eternal peace.
Never would I allow others to tell me that I was mistaken,
That not all that had happened was worthy of fond memory.
I have only myself now with whom to share my fantasies
Of a life of love and sharing with all who crossed my path.
It is easier this way that listening to lying accusations
That seek to re-frame my history to fit another's stage play.
I know who we have encountered and given some of our sacred;
I am now at peace with hoping that my staying silent may help heal them.
I know our goodness wasn't false, though it has been turned against us,
As if we were stealing the very spirits out of the mouths of their babes.
The final words have been spoken. The casket is now closed.
No more will I suffer from seeing the accusations in their eyes.
How did I not realize that life among what are called humans
Is infinitely more dangerous than life among rabid wolves?
I will arise as a new person, this time with my spirit fully armored.
I have released the lies about myself and those who promoted them.
I see clearly beneath the shame and fear of my tormentors,
To my original strength and fully human dignity.
No more will I make excuses in the guise of forgiveness;
My silence has led others to overlook continued and great abuse.
It is not love accepted that heals all wounds; it is openness to loving,
That comes only with humility to accept our part in another's pain.
A heart that is closed to vulnerability cannot ever truly love another;
Because love, like conception, requires complete sharing of our energies.
How sad that we are taught that love is only ministering to others,
Without any acknowledgement that it also requires being ministered to.
How easily we give gods credit for our food, safety, and shelter;
It is easier than sharing in the pain of people who make these available.
If manna, loaves, and fishes actually appeared from the surrounding air,
Someone would surely have had to stoop to collect these miracle meals.
The scent of sweat from honest labor should be life's finest perfume;
Washing soil from work boots should fill us with gratitude for the work.
Signs of dogs that shed while watching over our children all night
Should become to us symbols of true protection partnerships.
What if fathers were allowed to catch their own new born babies,
And to wash the mother's sacred blood out of their almost open eyes?
Couldn't we reclaim shared parenting as a sacrament, like lambing,
In which all are in the effort to bring new life from the mother's pain?
We must give ourselves over fully to all aspects of life and creation,
Rather than sanitizing experiences and leaving others with the mess.
The greatest sense of peace on earth is completion of a cycle,
Sharing every aspect with a partner, from conception to afterglow.