Astride a moonlight-colored horse,
naked and pale, our manes a near match,
I hold a load of stones against my chest.
Each one is my favorite.
The prickling of my mount’s milky coat
against my thighs
makes me remember, and I remember
why I’m not liked by everyone.
I’ve been the baby crying
knives in my mother’s ears.
I’ve been the whining child
in the backseat.
I’ve been the teenager obsessed
with my own confusion.
I’ve been the young wife and mother
feasting on melancholy.
I’ve been the divorcee flinging
I’ve been the thoughtless bitch,
the manipulative drama queen,
the woman who talks too much,
the employee who fails to pull her weight,
the judgmental fraud,
the hollow-eyed frost princess.
I’ve been that one
and that one and
Now my hips follow the rolling sway
of my horse’s gentle gait and I’m feeling
each stone’s shape against my ribs.
In being all the things I’ve been
to lose the love I’ve lost, I’ve collected
the knowledge of “why” – my precious
stones – to embrace, to turn over
in my hand, to hold up to the light, to
drop one-by-one, even as I gather
My patient silvered steed
stands by, huge hooves planted
in the dust of my days, and for
every stone I do not throw, I might
be loved again…or not.
So I ride exposed and magnificent
in my acceptance.
(c) 2008 Monica Gomez