We are creatures built on a foundation of want.
And sometimes that wanting is nestled so deep it dare not show itself, for fear of being seen and known in a way that makes it too real to be denied. Sometimes that want becomes a small, hard kernel of longing that you can’t speak, because to speak it would be to make it real for the world. and to make it real for the world would be to acknowledge that it is not what is true in the here and now, that it may never be.
Because this is true. What you want may never be yours to know. It may never have been or it may never be again. There is no way to be human and not know this – to not hold the truth of this, gritty and hard between your teeth, to swallow it down and give it a home in your being.
And it doesn’t matter what it is that you want. A love. A life. To make your art. To speak truth without repercussions. To be fully you without the constant threat of losing. Infinite tenderness. Holy justice. The wild taste of true freedom. A stable ground underneath your feet. The space where bare skin meets bare skin and everything is salt and the crashing of wave after wave. A full bank account. A body that does not hurt. A heart that feels whole again. A safe home. A respite from the world that is found in the power of art or in strong arms that don’t let go or inside a fortress so tall the villains can never get in. To be seen and known and fully met in the moment when everything is crumbling. Something so small it feels unimportant. Something so big it feels like madness to even dream.
What matters is that the want has knit itself into the core of you, and no matter how you try to deny it – it sits and roots in your belly. Holy and longing and insistent in its need. That want is a small, sad, quiet thing. It is a craving animal. It is desire that lives whole and hungry. It is a sacred prayer to possibility.
It rises in safety and silence and in moments of conflict, ravenous in the way it wants to rise through your torso and through your throat and flies through your mouth, forming truths that cannot be unspoken or even unknown. Truths that hang in the air, crystalizing and freezing your longing right there in the air in front of your face.
Sometimes, my want comes up and out of nowhere.
Sometimes, all my denial and all of my toughness and all of my avoidance are spent, and all that is left is the entirety of the want, naked and needy.
It whispers and it howls.
It cries and rakes at the earth.
It does battle with its own inherent contractions, at war with the ways it refuses to surrender to sensible or defined.
It tumble trips out of me, a ragged gaping wound.
It is soft and smooth and fully formed and ready to be met.
It holds out both hands and whispers ‘please, meet me here, please’.
I am on the bridge between here and there.
I am on the field that Rumi built with words, the one that lives between right doing and wrongdoing.
I am safe in the home of my own knowing.
I am curled in the shadowed corner of my room, hoping you will come through the door and offer me everything.
I am standing in the middle of a vast, empty space – bare of everything except the truth of this.
That want breaks me wide open to a world where hope can be born and throws up walls of boundary and protection to define my space. It stills me so that I can rest and pushes me unceasingly forward. It is guide and it is protector.
I am the me that lives now and the me that lived then and all of the versions of me that ever were and ever will be.
And in all of these, no matter how much I try to imagine or want that it could be different, I want.
I want and I want and I want.
And finally, I understand what is most true.
My want is the path that will lead me home.