Wednesday, February 1, 2012

The most real thing I know

our friends,
Lau and Vali,
have been with us for 2 weeks.

we served with them in Galati.
the man I plant with has known them for a long time.
and so, it has been with joy
that we've welcomed them into our home
and shared our days with them,
even as we used to share days
so far away.

and now the past seeps up into our days.
we were there.
with them.
with them all.
for days and days
and weeks and years.

we are not trying to escape what was then.
if anything,
we hold on
to faces and names and stories
grounding us in our now.
even though
it is gone.

because all those months that ran together
they color my eyes the brown of a roma girl
and scatter bugs through my hair like they ran through hers.
in one of the deepest parts of my heart
i still hold her hand.

and with them here
it's as if for a minute of all those days
the hand held wasn't just in my heart
but in today.

we left them at the bus station
and what felt so real again
suddenly feels-

and i grieve anew. afresh.
something that is so solid
has become what was solid.
what was real.

i want to demand that it remain real.
i want to shout: we were there. we did that.
we loved. we were loved.
and we have not been the same.
we are not the same.

that's the most real thing i know.
because of that love
we are not the same.

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