Postcard from the Knife-Thrower’s Wife

September 1 – Elkins, WV 

I want to hold faith for broken things

a bird struggling to fly and hope the wing 
isn’t truly broken but maybe only strained 
and when I walk by later it’s absence means 
it has flown back to their mate.

The man on the exit ramp in parka and boots 
on a mid-August day with a marker scrawled 
anything/helps/i’m/homeless sign is simply 
one good luck day-could be today-from a job.

I want to hold faith for the child taught to hide 
their feelings, for their broken heart, and scars 
they scatter like breadcrumbs throughout their 
life; waiting for someone to find them.

The woman who believed, trusted, & patiently
loved; ministering, soothing wounds far deeper
than ever imagined. Not giving up until the last 
remnant of her spirit becomes brittle and dry.

How does love turn into a batteringing rain 
that drenches then drowns you, leaves you
shivering alone with nothing but fragile bits
of faith to keep you alive.