A Picture of Phoebe

Author’s Note: I’ve been tinkering with this poem for days. I’ve cleared writing it with the young woman who is my model for Phoebe. I hope it does her justice and on a bad day gives her the courage to choose life and choose it to the full. If you feel like you want to hurt someone, please get help. If you feel like you want to hurt yourself, please get help. You might feel invisible sometimes, but  even the smallest person out of place has a trickle down effect.

Phoebe’s photo came across my feed today.
She’s always stunning in that Goth chick way,
And yet if you look closely,
You’ll see the disguise that hides the lies.

The flowing blouse…
Covers a stick-thin frame
Housing a soul starved
For real love–
Of self, from others,
With no negative ties.

The bright makeup…
Conceals a dark sorrow
Sheltering a heart that fights
To banish darkness–
Of anguish, Of self-loathing
With light of love and truth.

The fresh ink…
Hides scars on a wrist
Displaying for the world
To proclaim a shameful wounding
Too deep, too dark,
With words unspeakable to describe the horrors.

How I long to hold you!
Not as a resident of Sappho’s Lesbos,
But as a spiritual mother to a little girl-woman–
Tender, pure, loved,
The apple of Her Father’s eyes,
A precious delight.

I wish I had Creator’s power
To speak Creator’s Words–
To build a foundation for your soul,
To erect secure boundaries for your heart,
To install gates for your mind
That cleanse the darkness
And re-place the beauty
That Father God gave you in the womb.

But I don’t,
And I can’t.

It’s not mine to do.

All I can do is watch and pray,
But it’s not enough, it’s never enough.

And yet…it should be more than enough.


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