I remember her, as if she were me. But, there’s only a whisper of her left, a highlight of blond in my hair, when the sun catches it, just right. This girl, looked at her father this way, many many years ago, before he died. Her eyes were blue. Mine are not. Mine are green, like a stormy ocean on a raging grey day. The blue left them on a cursed day. This girl, yes. I remember her. These overalls had little blue and red daisy pins on the front pocket; I remember the way they felt on my fingers, the way the ridges burnt themselves on my brain. I remember that’s how my amethyst mug felt, before it broke. I suppose I’ve a tactile heart. I remember feeling, without the burden of time’s eraser. I remember age four like a faded dream, hollow yet real. The misty colours scented in pipe smoke and trimmed in scarlet & violet columbines, soft ferns, water mint—does time even touch there, or is it suspended somewhere?
Clever, how the heart beats so many times from childhood to death, yet there, in a smile, is all my life; a quick moment, left fading, to dust, to decay. While knowing, God willing, I will not be dead, not for even one day, I smile. I bask in a small hope.
Every small hope leads me, through the terror.
Did you draw me to you, knowing all my wickedness? Knowing, I would fail you? What kindness is, surely, I don’t know.
To love the girl who didn’t even know herself. To assure her, knowing, she would fail. To draw her, despite her worst traits.
Teach me to love.
How does a person love themselves when they are spawned on hate? How do they love another?
Yet still, you found the child of my heart, the untainted web of red, and bound me to you. Years became the girl’s lullaby. But, the web of red remains. I am affixed to you as a child to her father. Not a father, who cruelly becomes her hated enemy, but a father, loyal in his love. One unyielding to time or corruption.
I have one father. I sit silently, as in a smooth voice he speaks to me. Tell me again of Asaph. Tell me again of Job. Tell me again about Abagail. Speak to me, about the unyielding chains of Sheol, how this is like love. Jael, what of her? Of Deborah and of Esther—tell me about the little Israelite girl. Speak to me about Isaiah’s words. Of Daniel’s; Ezekiel’s; teach me why you loved Jonah, even tho he lacked faith, and he ran.
Do you ever tire of me? Have I asked too many questions? And can you tell me, what it is you love about me? Why you have loved me? When he didn’t love me?
You gave me the rock within myself when all my world crumbled away. And for this, Father, I will love you, every day, everyday. Until all my days have passed away.