Live Your Verb

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Tag: love is a temple (page 1 of 2)

At the Museum

There we were, lit up
by so many
tiny white lights
in the black of night,

and I thought

some kinds of love
should be shown off
on walls
like the ones
around us,

everyone could see
the beauty of

everyone could see
what sanctuary
looks like.

I think of art as
colors and lines,
bodies moving through
space, the long note of
a violin in my ear,

but also
(also! Don’t forget!)

the overflowing container
of a heart

that loves
and is loved,

that finds
poetry in the being
and the shadows
and the simple idea
hope for
something better,

or feels
gratitude for
the answered prayer.

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I should say

Before I forget to tell you later, before this begins to fade until we cannot quite remember it accurately, like a dream, I should say these words that bubble up to the surface and perch on the tip of my tongue…

Before one of us finally leaves for good, flies off dreamily or scorches a tongue on an argument or swiftly retreats into the shadows, I should say something about the here and now, about what is… (Soon it will only be what was.)

I should say that loving you has been the best part of my life. I should say that I carry a little piece of you with me every day. I should say that I still wrap my anxieties in thoughts of you, the way I used to fold myself into your arms and escape the weary days. I should say I learned that no one is really right, and that’s okay because the important thing is to be happy. And to love. And to beat on with the rhythms of our hearts and the currents of the rivers and the flutters of winged things.

My soul beats on. I carry on.

And we remain. We will outlive it all.


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morning poetry

I saw a couple embracing this morning. It wasn’t a hug; it was more of an intertwined tension, an electric current moving between their bodies. She fell into him like a rag doll and he pulled her up and in like he was trying to prop up her very soul, like he was trying to mend her whole being by wrapping himself around her. It was stunning. I felt like I was intruding by watching such an intimate display of emotion, but I couldn’t look away. There it was, a bit of poetry out among the traffic, men in suits bustling past them, the raging California sun beating hot on their skin. How simultaneously sad and lovely.


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(my own) truth

The truest truths of this universe
remain. They don’t fade or fall.

They may cast different
(misleading) shadows

but they remain (the same).

Because truth (real truth) is always
just that.

Because love (this love) is always
just that.

Because you are always
the most familiar place
to go home to.
Because you are always
(my own) truth.

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A Lion and a Lighthouse

I want to love
a man who is
a lion

A wild creature

with his courage
and his pride

and his love

A man who lives
with abandon,
who is unbroken


Even by love
Even by me


I want to love
a man who is
a lighthouse

A constant

A map of
the way home,
a map of
the safe places

A man who will
wait and know
I will come back
to him



I want to love
a man who has
a whole universe
inside his soul,

a man who can
a whole universe
within his arms

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road trip

Our favorite place
was nowhere

in between
the past
the present
the destination

(the obligation)

We were free

underneath a square
of sunlight and

only those long lines
stretched out before us
as far as we could see

We could have gone

on a whim
on a flick of the dial

(on love)

We could have gone

without a map
with each other

(We could have
missed the turn)

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You Make My Dreams Come True

Dance. Romance. Shenanigans. Combine them all and what do you get? A perfect proposal. Any man who puts this much thought and planning into his proposal is undoubtedly a great catch. Watch this to feel all aflutter. 

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When she was still barely a girl, just on the verge of being a woman, she met a boy and quickly fell in love. She spent hours admiring the nape of his neck, his carefree laugh, his distinctive way of moving through a crowd to reach her - the unique traits that only lovers really know.

After a while, she began plucking out little pieces of her soul and gently presenting them to him. He hadn’t asked her to; she wasn’t sure why she started. She didn’t even notice she was doing it until it had been going on for quite some time. She guessed she just loved him so much that it seemed natural to make an offering, to give herself over to the momentum of it all. Besides, they would be together forever, so she could retrieve the pieces any time she needed them. She might as well share.

He did not keep hold of the pieces very well. Some were dropped, others lost among his pockets, a few seemingly discarded. He had always been a little absentminded…

When his arms were full, she thought she might like a little piece of his in return, just a tiny one to keep in her pocket, turn over in her hand when she missed him. A token. She waited patiently, certain that he would press one into her palm… but he didn’t. She waited, waited, waited longer. Finally she asked him for a piece, just a tiny one, to hold close to her during his nights away. But he shook his head.

He must be confused, she thought. He must not understand that their souls were already fitted together like a puzzle. And so she asked again. And still he shook his head.

She sighed. She pointed to all the pieces she had given him - brimming from his pockets, stashed in his drawers, messily piled in the corners of the room – and then, hesitantly, she held out her upturned palm.

He stood very still for the longest time, so still she could hear the tick of the clock. Then he shook his head. “These are my pieces. If I give them to you, what will I have?”

“I gave you mine… You will have mine,” she said.”And I will have yours.”

“Why should we give away our pieces?” he asked.

She thought for a moment. She wasn’t sure. It had just seemed natural. “I guess… I guess to… to be part of each other,” she fumbled.

He smiled. It was the smile a teacher gives a student who speaks too quickly, who has already learned the answer to the question but fails to realize it.

“Give me your hand,” he said. She placed her hand in his and he pulled it to his chest, ran it along the outline of his rib. And she felt the most intricate patterns there, thin vines wound around and over and through. She caressed another rib, and another, and there, on each one, the same elaborate design. How had she never noticed it before?

“See?” he said. “We already are part of each other. We made our marks long ago.” He gestured to the patterns. “You have always been part of me.”


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Love Like a Temple

Once there were a boy and girl who lived in a temple with tall, golden walls. They each had soft, scarlet lips. They stayed inside the temple and spoke words of love and caressed one another with touches as light as the breeze. They occasionally gazed out the temple windows at the round, gleaming moon - and then just went on as before. No one kept time; they were too busy loving to bother with numbers and schedules and rotations and other such nonsense.

One day the girl went into the attic. Everything inside was covered in a fine film of dust except a tiny white clock in the corner. She ran her hand along its face and felt how smooth it was. Lovely. She carried it out of the attic, into the hall, stood high on her tippytoes and hung it on the wall. Satisfied, she wandered off to find the boy and go back to loving. She soon forgot about the clock.

Some time passed and one twilight the girl awoke to a tic-tic-tic-tic. She nuzzled into the boy’s ear. ‘Don’t you hear that?’ she asked. And then fell asleep again. They slept soundly for the rest of the night.

More time passed and again she awoke in the twilight. Tic-tic-tic-tic. She lie in the bed for a while and listened. Silence. Silence. And then, tic-tic-tic-tic. Silence. Tic-tic-tic-tic. Eventually she fell asleep.

Soon after she was wandering down the hall and saw tiny flakes of gold flitting to the ground. She went and found a broom and swept them away. Then she asked the boy ‘Did you see the gold is flaking off the walls?’

‘Nonsense,’ said the boy. ‘Gold cannot just flake away.’

Again, time passed. And again, she awoke in the night to a tic-tic-tic-tic. The next day she found more gold flaking off the wall. She fetched the boy and led him into the hall, tugging at the ends of his fingers, gently, the way lovers do. ‘Do you see?,’ she asked. ‘Do you see the gold?’

‘Oh,’ said the boy. ‘Oh.’ He paused. ‘Well, it’s only the wall. It’s only the gold. This is still our temple and we still love here.’

‘You’re right’, said the girl. ‘At least we have our temple. At least we have love.’

The days and nights passed. The round, gleaming moon appeared, then disappeared, again and again. The boy and girl loved. And sometimes little flakes of gold flitted to the ground and the girl swept them away. She did not care for the flaking, or for the sweeping, but she swept and went on with loving.

One dark twilight, the girl awoke with a start. Tic-tic-tic-tic. Silence. Tic-tic-tic-tic. She leaned over the boy. ‘Do you hear it, the tic? Listen.’

He rolled onto his back, lie in the dark for a moment gazing at the round, gleaming moon. ‘I hear it. But what shall we do? It’s just a tic.’

‘The tic wakes me up’, she said. ‘I don’t like the tic.’ He wrapped his arm around her and pulled her close, and they soon fell asleep.

On the darkest twilight of the year, the girl awoke again. The bed shook ever so slightly, echoing the tic-tic-tic-tic. She glanced toward the window, but there was no moon. She lie very still, found the boy’s fingertips in the blackness. She listened to the sound of her own breathing, focused on the slow inhale and exhale. But there it was. Tic-tic-tic-tic. And again. Tic-tic-tic-tic. Growing louder and louder. Tic-tic-tic-tic.

She finally rose from the bed and felt her way outside the bedroom, down the hall. At first it was very black but the hall grew lighter and lighter as she approached the clock. As she neared, she saw it had grown as big as the moon, a bright light looming high on the wall. With each tic-tic-tic-tic, the moon-clock shook. And with each shake, little flakes of gold flitted down to the floor.

Tic-tic-tic-tic. Shake-shake-shake-shake. Flit-flit-flit-flit.

She stood up high on her tippytoes and reached for the moon-clock, stretched her fingertips until she just brushed it. And with a flick, she hit it. She thought it would fall to the floor with a clatter, possibly break, but then, that wouldn’t be so bad, would it? She could put it back in the attic. And sleep. And love. And not have to sweep any more gold.

But the moon-clock did not fall. There was no clatter. Silence, for a moment. And then… Tic-tic-tic-tic. Shake-shake-shake-shake. Flit-flit-flit-flit.

She tried again, but could not reach. And again. And again. Her lip trembled, the first time such a thing had happened inside the temple. She bit her lip, rose onto her tippytoes again, stretched farther than she had ever stretched. And then – she felt two strong hands slip around her waist and gently lift her. She pulled hard on the moon-clock and a stream of nuggets broke loose from the golden wall, falling all around them. They toppled over.

She pulled herself up to a sitting position, smoothed the hair from her face and looked up. And there was the boy, sitting in a pile of gold rubble, bits of the wall crumbling behind him. Holding a tiny, broken clock. And grinning that grin of his.

She smiled, stood up, dusted the gold flakes off her nightgown and said ‘I’ll sweep in the morning.’ And then she padded down the dark hall back to bed. He followed soon after.


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