The mask of bright-leafed gaiety
drops away and displays
the bare truth, vulnerable and thin
without the show of exuberance.
Let’s not pretend, you and I,
that life is easy and fair.
Let’s face ourselves as we truly are:
sometimes empty, sometimes full,
broken, healing, gnarled, and weak;
no need to hide death
with pretty lies of endless health.
Lest our fears deny reality,
let’s accept the silences,
the browning grass, the dry stream beds,
the cracks and blight and hollowed limbs;
the floods and mud, the swarms and storms,
the fire fall, the haunting newess of snow,
the sorrow shadows that couch every joy.
There is a real, gritty beauty
in the finite
and the sublimely flawed;
though we lament the edges of our limits,
being other than perfect and whole,
we are fully known as other
and, as other, as beloved.
There is freedom in the truth,
in surrendering to Highest Will
that blows and buffets and ebbs
as it carries us.
So, let us be naked and unafraid
as we trust in the Love that made us this way.
Let us be brave
and drop our pretense of perfection
as autumn leaves.
© 2020 Christina Chase
Although crippled by disease, I'm fully alive in love. I write about the terrible beauty and sacred wonder of life, while living with physical disability and severe dependency. A revert to the Catholic faith through atheism, I'm not afraid to ask life's big questions. I explore what it means to be fully human through my weekly blog and have written a book: It's Good to Be Here, published by Sophia Institute Press.