When Daylight Is Chaos

Intricate stained glass
Shatters into thousands of pieces
Every time I open my eyes
The shards press into my skin
And this is how the day begins
Every time I open my eyes
Webs of gossamer lace with
Impossibly small rainbow dewdrops
Tear and twist into pieces
Too delicate to survive
Every time I open my eyes

And the stained glass
Tears my skin to ribbons
And the lace webs
Fly into my eyes
And the chaos that is daylight
Overflows into my brain
Until all I know is pain
Every time I open my eyes

I want to take my hands
And pick up the shards of stained glass
Unwrap the gossamer webs
And slow, delicate, careful, gentle
Put everything back the way it was
Before I opened my eyes

But the chaos that is daylight
Has overflowed my brain
And all I know is pain
I try to find my hands
But they are flying through the air
Flapping in the wind
Fluttering with a grace I can’t feel
Outside my control anyway
The rest of my body’s the same
My bones are absorbing the chaos
That entered my brain
The moment I opened my eyes

Twilight slowly forms around me
And I can almost feel free
Free of the shackles that bound me
When the sunlight was all I could see

And when the night finally dawns
I dare to look around
At the remnant shattered pieces
Scattered all across the ground

My hands only flutter a little
As I reach out to the shards
Just enough to keep reminding me
They’re here
And I feel my way across the floor
Until I’ve gathered
Every piece
So clear

It’s winter so there’s plenty of night
That’s how I console myself
It’s winter so there’s plenty of time
To fix all that went wrong
It’s winter and the days get short
With every passing day
And my hands flutter round the shards
To remind me it’ll be okay

I spend all night putting the pieices
Back together, one by one
Not exactly how they started
But a new pattern, just begun
I fill the cracks with gossamer
And look on it with awe
For in the night I can see
And I’m transfixed by what I saw

Even at night I see only the parts
But at night so much chaos is gone
My joints still ache from the thrashing
And my skin burns from the light of the sun

And this is not an idle time
It’s not a time of rest

It’s when I pick up the pieces
And I put them back together
One by one, and painfully slow
Painfully slow because
That’s where the pain all goes

My shredded burning skin
And the joints that rattled in chaos within
These things take time and rest
And I have neither

I hear a high-pitched keening sound
It seems to come from all around
My body curls into a ball
And images flash so rapidly
It’s like being there, body and all
Then I wake up
Curled up
Stiff as a board propped up
Drool covers my face and bed
But there is less chaos
It’s gone from my head

Instead there is silence
Like a deep watery pool
That has never been seen or touched
It’s silver like the moon
And as I lean over it
A feeling as if it is deep enough
To go on forever
And familiar enough
As if I’d seen it every day
Since before I was born

The silence is singing
Its own silent song
More beautiful than any
I have heard with my ears

It sings:

Darkness has a shape
And silence has a voice,
And if you reach down inside
You’ll find both
There are wordless words
And silent voices
And dark shapes
And endless silver pools

And it’s all so familiar
Because everyone has this
Deep down inside
Since before you were born

Before you were born
There was room for eternity
And when you were young
You could play at Her feet
Like that big redwood tree
Near the first house you’d ever seen
It positively shone with familiarity

Now child
Let me renew you
I am the voice of the night
I am the darkness taken form
And the other face of light

And She dipped Her ladle
Into the silver water
Said “Drink when you’re able
My child or son or daughter
This will renew you
From the damage of the day
And it’s here every night
Every night”

My hands fluttered again
But this time with glee
With the realization
That at night I am free

At night I am free
As I’m not in the day
The dark and the silence
Renew me

I took a walk outside
And everything was still
Save a few owls overhead
So I climbed up the hill
I saw the silver moonlight
Reflected on the lake
And the sight was so familiar
It made my heart ache

There is love in the darkness
That heals the chaos of the daytime’s light
There are secrets in this world
That can only be found in the dead of the night
There are people like you
For whom daylight can mean nothing but pain
And you’re welcome to find me
Night after night, again and again

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