Recovery

Trigger warning: References to crucifixion, death, torture. 

We play
Like resurrection
Wouldn’t stink

We are all daffodils
And sunrises
Chocolate
And marshmallows

But three days
Of rotting flesh
Had to have a fragrance

More like
Hard boiled eggs
Forgotten in the backyard
Found weeks later

Our rising up
Must require
Airing out the
Putrid smells of our own
Decomposition

 

Breathe deeply
The sweet spring smells
Of lilac flowers

Enjoy
Green grass peeking through
Sidewalk cracks

But the signs of spring
Ebb and flow
Of natural energy

Are not the same process
As embracing life again
After death
By torture

 

The idea that a twisted legacy
Of pain and trauma
Might disappear
After a few nights sleep

Haunts our celebrations
Shapes our dreaming
Twists our expectations into knots

Would it be so easy to
Belt out
Triumphant songs
Of rebirth

If we took
Survivors seriously

 

Of Course.
Joy.
Redemption.
Possibility.
New hope.

Reclaiming
A transformed life
Out of wreckage from the old

Yet the ache from that broken rib
Still lingers
Even after a fresh coat of paint
Makes the outside
Look brand new

Memories of violence
Painted into
Some
Body’s
Flesh

 

Maybe Jesus was just so special
Hallelujah
He is risen

No awkward stories of his panic attacks
Disrupting dinner with friends

Never spoke of how he
Winced when Thomas touched his hands
Still bearing scars from a few days before

Maybe some of us
Will be special too

 

But after our limbs
Have been tied up
Unable to move
Atrophy set in

Learning to walk again
Is not so easy
Orchestrating movement
Through so many aches and pains

Body now a stranger
Grief lurks nearby
Fear catching in our throats
As we try to sing
A new song

Deprivation
Shapes how we occupy
The empty silence that remains
After

It takes more
Than just
A weekend
To recover
Ourselves

©2016 Chris Paige. All rights reserved.

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