I am …

I am not my mother.
Or the mother before her.
I am not like another.
I am not the lies I have believed in secret.
Or the ones still screaming my name in broad daylight.

I am not defeated.

I am not lost.

I am the pieces I have gathered,
Flame tested,
made ever stronger amongst the ash.

I am the lessons I have watched
Unfold before me,
The ones that still leave
The taste of blood in my mouth.

I am battle tested,
A collection of scars,
Redeemed and made beautiful,
Over and over and over again.

I am a universe,
A love story,
Stitched together by grace.

I am relentless.
I am hope.

cswhitlow

Shattered

Shattered like stained glass

Scattered across such unforgiving ground

Price paid for a reckless rebellion

Elbow deep in abandoned hope

She sifts anxious

Through bloody shards and dust

Searching, digging, scavenging

For just one piece

The one,

That will reflect the Light back in.

The one,

That always reminds her

why she should

Stand and fight again.

cswhitlow

My love 

My love,

Listen…

 

You are not broken.

You are scarred and still standing,

Battle worn, weary,

But still kind,

still needed.

 

You are not defeated.

 

Stop feeding that darkness

with old lies

and unrelenting doubt.

 

 

My love,

Look….

 

Look through my eyes,

Into this heart,

Offered,

Open in these bloodied hands,

 

Listen,

Look…

And I’ll show you,

the miracle you’ve become.

 

cswhitlow

Will

I will set this fear on fire.

I will brush the blood and gravel from these weary knees.

I will stand and sift through the glorious ash of the girl too afraid to live.

I will gather up the good pieces left refined

And leave the rest to become ink and scars.

I will put to good use this needle and thread.

I will allow to mend what has been left torn open.

I will open wide, wiser eyes and seek.

I will sing a new song.

I will emerge less of her ….

and so very much more.

I will.

I am.

cswhitlow

Growing Pains


Woken from nightmares again …

What if’s and Why did I’s

raining down like volcano ash;

suffocating,

gray,

smothering the light

that sets free.

What if I simply slipped back into winter, frozen and numb?

Why did I let myself begin to burn?

What if I ran again …

from him, from her, from the dreams?

Why did I let myself be seen?

What if I went back into hiding?

Why did I step from the shadows at all?

What if I gave back into fear?

Why did I ever believe their lies?

cswhitlow

Afraid

I am afraid of her…

She whispered.

 

I am afraid of falling,

And I am afraid of the standing still.

 

I am afraid of staying numb forever,

Unmoved and frozen in worn out armor,

And I am afraid of the exposure,

Of catching fire under a blinding sun.

 

I am afraid the roots of loneliness

Have grown too far-reaching,

Too deep to be torn to the surface,

And I am afraid my love

is a storm tossed ship lost at sea.

 

I am afraid these broken pieces

Left behind from so many sorrows,

Are too sharp for innocent mortals,

And I am afraid I don’t quite recognize myself

When whole and happy.

 

I am afraid of all that’s hidden inside me…

The passion, the hate, the wild wind,

The sorrow, the overwhelming joy,

The untapped ocean depth,

And I am afraid it can no longer stay contained.

 

I am afraid…

And I am choosing to be brave.

 

cswhitlow