Photo: (c) Jamie K. Reaser
She was standing in front of me,
to my left side, wearing a white dress
trimmed with lace, tiny flowers printed
upon it, head cocked, arms lifted and
reaching, little fingers wiggling in the air.
“Up!” she said.
This meant something; she had been
dropped so many times before.
What’s worse than having
to hold yourself all the time?
Falling from the arms of the
one you trusted to hold you.
Becoming convinced that bruises
should be expected by the vulnerable.
Forgetting that you are always being held.
Once I rescued a tiny black-and-white
kitten that someone had thrown into
highway traffic in order to end his life.
His little organs were badly bruised
when his soft body struck the hard
black pavement. Touch hurt him.
Thus, all we did to help him, hurt him.
He didn’t want to be held. Not for
This morning, when he looked up
at me from the kitchen floor, I lifted
him to my chest and stroked his
soft fur. He was still for a moment,
then sighed. He wedged his head
in under my chin. He began to purr.
I had been holding out hope
that he would someday know
of this possibility.
I know something of the little girl’s
story. Some of her bruises have had
odd colors and shapes, some shaped
like animals. I remember one looked
like a kitten.
I find myself wondering:
Is she, us?
Have you ever been afraid to look to the
heavens and ask for what you need because
you don’t trust that you will be held?
I am held.
You are held.
© 2016/Jamie K. Reaser
To be published by Talking Waters Press
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