Musical Selection: Bishop Briggs|Be Your Love
She said that’s how she’s been feeling —
e m p t y . . .
I am seated next to her, drifting in
and out of the conversation.
It’s a struggle today to be her shoulder
to lean on as I’ve been needing
one myself, but I snap back
into position. I react and become alert.
She sips from an old coffee mug
her favorite tea’s steam kissing her lips.
I watch her curl her fingers
around the base of the mug,
rubbing it lightly as she speaks.
In between sips, she lets a tear fall.
I quickly pull a tissue from a nearby box,
offer it to her, and pat her thigh with my hand.
I know what it feels like to have
a space in your heart that is
v a c a n t . . .
No one’s currently there to fill it,
to counter the vacancy and you begin
to feel that no one will ever come.
I don’t tell her this.
She is having a hard enough time
making me remember our
college days when we were fanning
wantoned eyes and hands away from us.
I see that reminiscing is sending her
higher than I can fly
and I struggle to strap myself in
and remain seated.
I don’t want to soar too far away
from where we are.
This moment is important.
She loops back into the beginning
of the pain as if we have not
touched on where the hurt lives before.
Replays and rewinds — we are
sopping up the very essence of
what is bringing her down.
I reach up into the air above us,
pull forward memories of happier days
and remind her that we have experienced
w o r s e . . .
There, in the comfort of
teary eyes, lingering breaths,
and a friendship that spans beyond
fifteen years, we build a stronger
The webs we’ll weave in the future
will hold flightless loves.
We’ll gather all of them
one-by-one, sign them up
for forefront truths and rely
on their integrity.
Empty will become a past place
for both of us as we
step away from the shadows and
adapt to living in the light.
©2019 Tremaine L. Loadholt