Advocates

When the love is too large
and it spills messily on the floor
and you are two years old,
strapped to a high chair,
you cry,
watching it lonely splat
all over the floor.
You toss your plate of overcooked spaghetti
to join it
then stop your tears,
your breath,
and peer downward.
The pause is needed.
The wails might overwhelm the masterpiece:
love and spaghetti.
When this happens the dog comes scampering over,
hastily lapping up both, heartily,
bringing brightness ~
until you are scolded,
but you know your love is safe in the dog’s belly.

When the love is too large
and your offerings form into words
that don’t stick
and aren’t caught,
words that float past unanswered,
not sad,
words that settle on a bluebird’s wing,
then fly
on the proverbial
wing and a prayer.
You hear them,
safe in flight,
as birdsong.

When the love is too large
and boys grow tall and somewhat frightening
because you can no longer run faster than they can
and they look at you differently,
(scared themselves,
of themselves?)
maybe it is too soon.
Love alights on round-backed ponies
in fields and novels and shiny magazine photos.
Black birds on sun-dappled hide.

When the the love is too large
even as years pass,
it lands heavily with a thud.
No innocent dream can carry it forever,
try as it may.
This is when the heart grows tentative,
taken over by a frantic quest for answers.
Careers, degrees, marriages, divorces,
children, hangovers, mistaken recognitions,
fears of love lost or love never found.
Exhaustion.
Resignation.

Love is there,
grazing,
prancing.
Just the right size.
They come to us
in this place and time
because we have earned our way.
Both of us.
Instinctually, unavoidably,
we are pulled
because the fit is inevitable
and perfect.
Our love is great enough
to carry them.

Atop Junior, the horse that called me back.

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