I think I know now.
I can never stop. I can never stop clasping at
dreams given in sweat-filled sleep (glimpses of
this body’s legacy).
I am a mosaic of mothers, don’t you see?
It’s something imprinted on my heart, still.
And it is branded deep.
The revelations of this me seep through the barrier of a simple mind:
It is not only I who live, but them through me.
My responsibilities, therefore, run as deep as
my privilege to have lived through coups and rodeos
and a million memories they made.
Yet, I do not want to acquiesce the hand dealt to me by life.
I want joy. Not just theirs, I realise, but mine.
I want to know this body, this heart, the way my mother’s hands know my hair.
The way my friends know my face,
the way my past knows my secrets,
the way my future knows my hope,
the way creation knows its Creator.
That’s the way I choose to exist.
So,I can never stop, you see. I’m going to get it, joy I mean,
no matter how much fear I have
to wade through to know her.
And I know, that in this cloud of witnesses stands a parade of mothers
Offering me encouragement, gentle discipline,
and needed rest. So that one day, and one day soon,
When I finally commit to letting my striving cease,
I can be the coloured tile, small but significant, in someone else’s
- Chloé Jarrett-Bell
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