On What My Love Is

Three years ago a man told me he couldn’t be with me after all because he wanted a ‘blank slate’. That didn’t even compute for me because what? I mean, what?! I may have laughed. Through my hurt, I may have laughed.

More recently I found myself loving a man who I later discovered was committed elsewhere. You can be as ‘private’ as you please on social media until someone tags you. She tagged him. But even then denial was my friend. Denial was the glue that held me together until I stood in the circle of his arms and everything within me wished him farewell. I said to one friend ‘I don’t know who I am when I’m not with him.’

She may have laughed. Through my hurt, we may have laughed.

It took many, many days to stitch myself back together. It took many, many days for the bits and pieces I’d given to him to settle back as me. It took strength I never knew I had; recovery almost killed me.

But this is what I know:

My love is light, it is peace, it is holy and sacred, it is whole and much more besides. Darkness will flee before it, storms will quiet, goodness shall come from it. I am a goddess, not dust, and I will not settle for holograms of love.


On Learning To Keep Silent

Last night I dreamt I was in conversation with a certain gentleman known to me in waking life to be of dubious gentleness and gentility and yet possessed of infinite charm and that thing that made me want to give him not just my body but my heart, my soul, all of me. It was a conversation we could have had in real life but didn’t, and of course upon waking the first thing I did was pick up my phone to tell him about it. Because habit. Because foolishness. Because I cared for him longer than I should have and believed he cared for me and so because of all these things I wanted to share my dream with him.

Thank God for pauses.

Because in those few seconds of considering one word over another I also questioned why it is that I was typing in the first place. Why did I want so badly to share my dream with him? Besides sheer foolishness, what is this need, this desire to discuss the matters of my heart with someone I know couldn’t possibly care less? No seriously, what is that?

Because I had no answer I stopped typing, deleted what I’d already typed and curled up in a ball to comfort myself. No, I’m kidding.

I deleted the text without sending it and mourned the impulse that made me forget for a few minutes that this man isn’t available for me to text at all hours. I’ve been that woman that loves a man that loves another woman and you know, that’s one place to which I can categorically state I’m NEVER going back. I’m too much of a muchness to be anyone’s side-piece even though in principle I have nothing against side-piecery. Amadoda ayashota and we need to promote the spirit of sharing.

It’s just not a situation I can thrive in. Everything is not for everyone, remember.
And that applies to my dreams too. Everyone doesn’t need to hear about them. That’s that shit I need to keep for my therapist.



I know how to love you beyond the worst thing you ever did because
I know how to love the moon when it’s full and when it’s waning.
I know that you use words
In lieu of Elastoplast –
You know I could peel them away
To see the blood pumping beneath.
You know I could;
I know I won’t.

I know that you know words mean different things
According to who’s listening
Not just who’s speaking.
I know that hearts don’t always break,
I know that sometimes they crack;
Stop three degrees from full shatter.
I know that whatever happens
Whatever life throws
My heart will mend:
Not always easily
Nor always swiftly
But always.

I know that only I can break me.
I know that nobody else wields that power.
-Beauty’s Daughter
(Inspired by Buddy Wakefield – We Were Emergencies)

We The Broken Ones

We call expression of emotion ‘ranting’ when we are unwilling to face our culpability.
We accuse our lovers of tantrum-throwing when they try to speak of how we hurt them.

We mock, ignore, belittle and ridicule any attempts at truth-speaking because we cannot bear to look into the mirrors life and love hold up.
We choose delusions of grandeur over the substance of love. The myths of our unbreakability sustain us even when our brokenness is laid bare for any who care to look and see.

We break hearts where we go.
We walk through storms of tears uncaring.
We pity those who give us chance after chance because we know we are undeserving of grace.
We who stuff our emotions into chasms deep within and numb our pain with lie upon lie, we do not deserve the kind of love offered by those who see us for what we truly are and love us regardles.
We know this and so we despise our lovers. What is their love worth if they love such as us?

We want it, crave it, and loathe it all at once.
We want it because it – love – is our salvation.
We know this and rage against it. Our egos are the size of planets.
We loathe love because it demands we live truth and we cannot.
We will not. Not that we’re incapable you understand, just too frightened to try (but I will deny this if you ever mention it).

We have been hurt too much and have hurt too many to believe ourselves worthy of the grace that makes love possible. Even though the evidence of our souls says we are loved, we the broken ones –

We are loved but we believe ourselves unlovable (ego says we are better and worse than everyone) and so we burn the loving out of ourselves, bury it deep. Destroy it where it takes root.
We are too self-absorbed to notice how this burns those who love us. When self-preservation forces them to step back from the flames we call it betrayal.
We suck our lovers dry thinking to prove their faithlessness, leaving empty husks where we found lush life.

We have spent too much time pretending we don’t care, pretending we don’t want love. We the broken ones –
What would we look like if we suddenly started believing in love? If we suddenly began to act like lovers and not world-breakers whose actions are diametrically opposed to their words?

A Tale of Sunset

There is no urgency to his kiss, no rising heat. Do not take this to mean his kiss is without feeling or cold. It is fire checked, that kiss. You would be mistaken to think it is completely free of passion.
There is no rising because these two know better now than to lose control. They know better than to kiss but they kiss anyway, though they keep the fires banked and tight reins on minds keep their bodies from full betrayal. There is no moaning here, no pressing harder or holding tighter or hankering for still more. Instead, things far more dangerous rise between them: a claiming and a discarding.
She claims what parts of him she can reach, her mark forever after a whispering at the back of his skull, a conscience where his is seared, a tingling between his shoulder blades just out of reach of scrabbling fingers. He will carry that mark – her -forever and always.
As she unknowingly yet not unwillingly lays her mark upon him he discards everything she represents, throws it away for the effort it would take to claim her in return, chooses the path of least resistance and all because when everything has been said, his word cannot stand.
He has the capacity to break her and in his presence she knows it, cannot deny it, accepts what he is capable of because to resist is to break anyway (she knows that much at least). In his arms, holding to the moment to stop her mind reaching for other moments that would break the world, her world, as he broke it once before, she accepts what is offered, takes it with thanks, savours it. It is good.
That acceptance that what is cannot transmute to more is what saves her: a kiss is offered and she does not yearn for more, she enjoys kissing him not in lieu of lovemaking nor as a prelude to deeper intimacy but simply for its own sake. Thus, kissing him is good and satisfying. Sated, she walks away almost whole, quite unbroken, without regret and only a tinge of sorrow. She is only human after all and what is it to be human but to feel?
He takes what she offers and finds it suited to his need and perfect for his pleasure. He does not know that what she gives him is tempered out of her desire that he, too, walk away without regret. He does not know the price she pays to hold him and be held by him and keep both wild desire and hot tears at bay. Of course he does not know. He thinks it is his handling of her that’s done the trick. He is too blind too see or too distracted to notice or perhaps he is wading too deep in melodrama of his own making.
All he knows is her willingness which he misinterprets as need, and that makes him pity her. That pity dooms them. There is no passion without respect after all, and who can respect or desire that which arouses pity?
And there, the answer to the question she used to ask in moments of self-indulgence: does he feel what she feels?
Not anymore.
Where there was once a wanting and a rising and a burning for each other’s attention and affection, now there is only his pity. That pity is a stain in her memory of that kiss but she accepts it too, bends with it and does not break. What choice does she have after all? To break or not to break, and having broken once, this time she knows to bend and sway. He is what he is after all, a mere man, broken, and with too much awareness of the darkness within himself and too little of the grace within her.
That too dooms them.
Only grace can dress those wounds, but what is grace in the face of unbelief?
She is the passion he seeks but it will take depths of emotion he can no longer reach to arouse that passion and he is too tired to try. She does not know just how tired he is and as he misinterprets her willingness as need and pities her for it, she reads his exhaustion in her own way.
So much that they could and should share but what would life and love stories be if there were no missed opportunities? Here, between these two, there would be trust, honesty, commitment (eventually, perhaps) but the story would also be one of fighting for one’s right to choose, of betrayal and lust and sacrifice. Here the sweetness of life and the joy of communion but also a tragic tale of disharmony and families fractured.
But, that kiss. There is more to that kiss. Goodbye is entwined with the familiarity of that kiss. It is stained by the shadow of what could have been. They did not know until later – she sooner than him – that that kiss was a goodbye, a farewell to a love that could have been but is not. Even the gods and goddesses grow tired of the folly of humanity and withdraw offers made. A great love was offered, a chance not taken, and now it is gone.

She, perhaps more than many others, knows that everything is not for everyone. She, more than him, knows that she is not for him – not anymore – and that he is not for her. Perhaps he never was.

Run Away As Fast As You Can

If he easily gives you the last dumpling
But is never around when you need him –
If he runs himself ragged for others
But is too this or that when you call him –
If integrity is something he values
But all you have is a pile of broken promises
Under a heap of half-truths
Hidden beneath a wet pillow,
You might want to consider that perhaps –
Perhaps he’s not the lover you need,
Perhaps you’re not the girl he wants.
Let Yeezy teach you:
Run away as fast as you can.
-Beauty’s Daughter